The Mingzhi Academy 明志書院 in Taishan District is the first academy in northern Taiwan, it was established in 1763 during the Qing Dynasty. The academy had two branches: One in Taishan, one in Hsinchu. Taishan's Mingzhi Academy was divided into 4 branches by the end of 18th century: Taishan, Tamsui, Sinjhuang and Sanchong. In 1875 the land belonging to Mingzhi Academy was divided in two, and the second part was given to Manka's (today known as Wanhua's) Xuehai Academy 學海書院 (source). The Hsinchu branch was demolished during the Japanese occupation, today's Migzhi Academy is therefore the last one remaining. What we see today is just a small part of the former complex, that was originally much larger. The building was slowly decaying throughout the 20th century up until 2003, when the bricks nearly collapsed. The local government finally decided to renovate and rebuild what was left later that year, and in 2005 the renovation works were completed (source).
Here are some of my photos from January 2013:
I'm not sure about the opening hours, but I guess, if you arrive during the week throughout the day, you will be able to enter. There was a woman inside, when my wife and I arrived, but she was not asking us anything. We were free to walk around and take photos. There is a small exhibition inside in the two smaller rooms on each side next to the big main room. The exhibition is in Chinese, and shows the history of the academy, the building, as well as the renovation works. To get to know how to find the Mingzhi Academy, check my Taishan overview post and follow the instructions.
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▷ RELATED INFORMATION
• Pinyin: Míngzhì shūyüèn
• Related website: Wiki-CH
• My useful tips: Transportation in Taipei
▷ RELATED POSTS
• Upper Taishan Temple
• Lower Taishan Temple
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