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Summary of prison establishment affairs

  • Publication Date :
  • Last updated:2023-01-16
  • View count:3604

     After the budget and employees got ready, administrative staff was responsible for official affairs and material supply at Taitung Prison and the rest employees began transferring the 80 criminals selected from all prisons to Green Island. There were no transportation vehicles except for the military jeep used by the major general in the command post. Therefore, the committee made a three-wheeled cart (three-wheeled cart with diesel engine) in Taitung. It would be responsible for transporting construction materials, bricks, and sandstone.

     The advance employees, Mr. Li Dong-ming and Li De-sheng (islanders with carpentry) transported bed plates, cooking coals (there was no cokes, gas, and firewood at that time) and cookers by fishing ship (on a wavy day). After arriving at Green Island, they established the dormitory and kitchen range at the old storage of Green Island Township Office. The simple worker dormitory and kitchen were initially built for criminals.

     Later, the chief of Section of Custody and Security, Mr. Li Zheng-jie, led the criminals, employed technicians, and the three-wheeled cart to Taitung Fugang Harbor. They sailed to Green Island on the military wooden ship "Jin Xing Fu." All employees and criminals got aboard first and then the cart driver, Mr. Li Xian-ming, drove the cart aboard through the gangboard. With nearly the same width with the boat, the cart got on the ship and parked after getting to and fro for three times. However, as the three-wheeled cart was getting parked, the wooden ship hit against the bank of the port. The ship was broken and nobody noticed the hole. It was lucky that someone noticed the hole from the land before the ship started off. He cried out "There's a hole. There's a hole!" Then others found the hole with astonishment and they repaired the hole immediately. A disaster was prevented thus. It had been night as the ship arrived at Green Island. With the lighting of flashlight, they counted the criminals by touching their head and sent the criminals to the dormitory at Chongliao Village for dinner and sleep.

     After resting at the working dormitory for three days, criminals began working. They got out in the morning and returned at night everyday. It took half an hour to walk from the dormitory to the site. The diet was four dishes and a soup. They ate on the land. If the food was not enough, the governmental expense would offer the subsidy. Criminals were allowed to smoke (cigarette was forbidden in all prisons then), and the salary (working pension) was enough for them, so they lived freely here and worked hard. All criminals remained stable here.
  To arrange for employees in the hard building process, Taitung Prison Section of Operation was entrusted to build ten employee dormitories and one warden dormitory. The total budget for completing the project amounted to 240,000 NTD. The base of the prison was a rectangle with the front higher than the back. It took human force to dig the soil on the back side and to fill up the front side. The land was sandy soil. There were no bulldozers and compactors then. The land was thoroughly filled up and impacted by human force. The illustrator, Mr. Wu, designed several iron balls with round top and square bottom. Workers pulled them up and released them down for compacting the land. The land grading was accomplished then.

     After land grading, the construction was begun, such as processing steel bars, fixing formwork, and digging the groundwork. As digging the groundwork, the base for pillars required deeper foundation and six processed strong erosion-proof wooden piles were erected. Then steel bars and ground beams were erected. The following procedures such us grouting, window and door building, groundwork laying, roof forming, polish, and floor grinding, were practiced based on the rules. Scaffolds were built for workers to mix cement (there were no grouting machines and appliances such as fixers and vibrators at that time). The ratio of cement was 1:2:4. The kitchen, generator room, dormitory, plant, office, central stage, corridors, and isolation room (Note 3), employee dormitory, and the surrounding wall were built in order. The grand assembly hall was built by the second warden, Mr. Tu Qi-huan.

(Note 3: the isolation rooms were a back to back construction located at the back of the main construction site. Criminals had to dig earthworks and fill up the lower front. For encouraging them to work hard, the official usually gave them 35 Cigarette as awards. They hung the cigarettes at the lower front and criminals were divided into groups for contesting. It was an effective strategy when the work seemed to be difficult.)

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