Images of Childhood in Taiwan Memory


The exhibition of ‘Images of Childhood in Taiwan Memory’ presents the historical images of children from over a hundred years in Taiwan. There are four themes on display: ‘Children’s Clothing’, ‘Children’s Games’, ‘Children and Buffaloes’ and ‘Children and Women’.

1. Children’s Clothing

Clothing is the most obvious element reflecting children's life. Through the photos of different ethnic groups and times, such as traditional Aboriginal costumes, traditional Chinese clothes and embroidered shoes, Japanese costumes and hats, we can observe the changes of Taiwanese children's clothing in different periods. What is the special feature of clothes you wear now?

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Savage to [shoot] a Bow.
(1910,NCL Accession No. 002414274)


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A Savage Woman at Weaving, Formosa
(1920,NCL Accession No. 002414072)


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Savages of Tatsutaka, Formosa
(1920,NCL Accession No. 002414430)


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Girls as they dressed in the late Qing Dynasty
《Precious old photo album in Taichung.episode 4》(Chen Wu-xiong,2000)


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Children's clothing in the era of the Japanese occupation
《 Precious old photo album in Taichung.episode 4 》(Chen Wu-xiong,2000)


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Girls’ and Boys’ Play of Formosa
(1910,NCL Accession No. 002415072)


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《 Old love Nanxun:Old photos of Tainan 5 》(Jiang Bo-zhi,Huang Wu-zheng,2000)

2. Children’s Games

What were some games that children in Taiwan used to play? Do you remember those jingling rhymes you chanted when playing those games? You are invited to enter the world of children’s games. We used to chant in Mandarin, “Little ball, banana oil,” and “One penny, two pennies, three triangles,” and we used to chant in Taiwanese, “Asphalt road, sticks to my feet,” and “Big fat boy, frying chives.”

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The book was created by 11-year-old girls during the Japanese occupation.
"Seven Mother" is Seven Star Empresses who is the protector of children.

(1940。NCL Accession No. RI0008324)

2.1. Playing Ball and Skipping Rope

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Elementary Chinese Textbook
(Taichung Chinese Book Store,1946)


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No. 442 Liberty Lottery Ticket


2.2. A Baby Cart is the Best Toy

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Sister and Brother
《 Old love Nanxun:Old photos of Tainan 5 》(Jiang Bo-zhi,Huang Wu-zheng,2000)


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Barefoot Childhood 1951
《 Old love Nanxun:Old photos of Tainan 4 》(Jiang Bo-zhi,Huang Wu-zheng,1999)


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A Wooden Baby Cart
《Jiuzan Toujie doll》(Wu Ming-zhong,1998)

3. Children and Buffalos

What comes to your mind when you hear the words “children in Taiwan” and “animals”? Huang Tu-shui, a sculptor whose relief sculpture “The Portrait of Water Buffalos” was created in 1930. The sculpture shows water buffalos and cowherd boys, a sight often seen in the countryside in Taiwan. The following pictures show images of children and water buffalos collected in Taiwan Memory.


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A Portrait of Water Buffalos
(Huang Tu-shui,1930,Image source:Taipei Fine Arts Museum)


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A Poster from the Paper Windmill Theater
(paper windmills,1997,NCL Accession No. PS0001968)


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A Boy and a Buffalo
(1920,NCL Accession No. 002414800)


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A Boy and Buffalos
(1920,NCL Accession No. 002414820)


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Children and Buffalos, Formosa
(1910,NCL Accession No. 002414834)


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Children and Buffalos, Formosa
(1920,NCL Accession No. 002414839)


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Children and Buffalos, Formosa
(1920,NCL Accession No. 002414849)

4. Children and Women

The image of Mother and child conveys the most intimate relationship among parents and children. The pictures of mother and child, represented individually or in groups, collected in Taiwan Memory, show the intimate relationship in different ages and different life settings through their expressions, movements, and clothing.

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Pepohoan Woman and baby
(1920,NCL Accession No. 002414144)


4.1. Double Photo

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Paiwan woman going out to farm
(1920,NCL Accession No. 002414144)


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《 Old love Nanxun:Old photos of Tainan 5 》(Jiang Bo-zhi,Huang Wu-zheng 2000)

4.2. Group Photo

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Aboriginal Woman and Children in Formosa
(1910,NCL Accession No. 002414740)


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Customs of women and children
(1910,NCL Accession No. 002415047)

4.3. About Shoes

With the passing of time, bare feet, bound feet, clogs, leather shoes, slippers, and other stories concerning shoes, are collected in Taiwan Memory, stories that you and I are familiar with.


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A studio photo
《 Old love Nanxun:Old photos of Tainan 5 》(Jiang Bo-zhi,Huang Wu-zheng,1999)


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A memorable picture(1938)

《 Old love Nanxun:Old photos of Tainan 5 》(Jiang Bo-zhi,Huang Wu-zheng,1999)


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Bound feet and Hookah
(1961年)《 Precious old photo album in Taichung.episode 4 》(Chen Wu-xiong 2000)

5. Zhu-Qiang Elementary School Exhibition

5.1. Taiwan Memory at Zhu-Qiang; NCL’s exhibition goes to Hualien

The Exhibition“Images of Childhood in Taiwan Memory” will be copied in its entirety and sent to the Zhu-Qiang Elementary School Library for display. The content of the exhibition is divided into two main parts: themed book display and picture display.There was also a commemorative stamp station and a booth where attendees could experience the type of children’s games and toys adults used to play with. Exhibition content was aligned with teaching activities to deepen the meaning of the exhibition.

The 50 books that comprise the book exhibition will be donated to the Zhu-Qiang Elementary School library when the exhibition is over. An additional 40 volumes on Taiwan will be on display, provided by the Hualien County Bureau of Culture, making the exhibition even better.

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Director-General Tseng Shu-hsien Presents Certificate of Appreciation


5.2. Opening Performance

The students put on a well-rehearsed performance for the opening ceremony.

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5.3. The Appearance of the Exhibition

Teachers at Zhu-Qiang Elementary utilized their reading classes to help their classes prepare to view the exhibition.

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Entrance sign


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Decorations in the library


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Main exhibition table

5.4. Exhibition Content

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Book Display


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Books provided by the Hualien County Bureau of Culture


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Book Display

5.5. Activity

The difference with the exhibition at NCL was that Zhu-Qiang Elementary had a commemorative stamp station and a booth where attendees could experience children’s games. At the booth were some children’s toys from yesteryear, such as shuttlecocks, diabolos, bamboo-copters, pinball, tambourines, slingshots, space balls, tops, marbles, rubber band guns, etc. These were available to try, allowing the students to experience what adults used to play with when they were younger.


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Display of children’s toys


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Pinball machine


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Paper dolls


Colorful bamboo-copters


‘Images of Childhood in Taiwan Memory’ coordinated with Zhu-Qiang Elementary School to provide books related to the exhibition theme. The aim was to increase students’ interest in reading through this event.


5.6. Student Reflections


Insights from children:
“The first song we performed was ‘One penny, two pennies, three triangles’; the second was ‘Little Ball’; the third was ‘Stir Frying Turnips’; the fourth was ‘Tricycle’; the fifth was ‘Asphat.’
I felt like it was so fun! When we were finished performing, a lot of people were clapping, and we even took pictures together!”


Insights from children:
“I felt like the volunteer mom was really amazing at spinning the top. She was really good at it. I want to be amazing like her. We don’t have a top at our house. I would like one though.”


Insights from children:Pinball machine


Zhu-Qiang Elementary holds a book exhibition every semester. That this exhibition could be hosted in coordination with National Central Library, as well as books send over from Hualien County’s Bureau of Culture, brings together resources from the central government, the local government, and the school. The exhibition opened the eyes of the students. They enjoyed looking at the displays and reading.

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11/22 Shared on National Central Library’s fan page
Newspaper source: Keng Sheng Daily News


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11/24 Shared on National Central Library’s fan page