Timeline of Taiwanese history

Timeline of Taiwanese history

This is a timeline of the History of Taiwan including the History of the Republic of China on Taiwan (1945-present).

For the timeline of the History of the Republic of China on mainland China (1912-1949), see Timeline of Republic of China history.

Pre-Historic Times

*Sometime between 13,000 and 3,000 B.C.: Earliest inhabitants for which archeological evidence has been found. Changbin Culture (長濱文化). [http://www.gio.gov.tw/taiwan-website/5-gp/history/index.html Taiwan GIO: A Brief History of Taiwan] ]

16th Century

Kingdom of Middag (1540s-1732)

*1540s: Kingdom of Middag established.
*1544: Portuguese sailors passing Taiwan record in the ship's log the name "Ilha Formosa" (Beautiful Island).
*1582: Portuguese shipwreck survivors battle malaria and aborigines for ten weeks before returning to Macau on a raft.
*1592: Japan unsuccessfully seeks sovereignty over Taiwan ("Takayamakoku" 高山国 in Japanese, lit. high mountain country).

17th Century

*1604: Dutch envoy Wijbrand van Waerwijck and his army are ordered to occupy the Pescadores in order to open trade with China. However Ming Dynasty general Shen You-rong demanded their withdrawal.
*1609: Tokugawa Shogunate of Japan sends feudal lord Arima Haruno (有馬晴信) on an exploratory mission to Taiwan.
*1616: Nagasaki official Murayama Tōan (村山等安) leads troops on an unsuccessful invasion of Taiwan.
*1622: Dutch envoy Cornelis Reijerszoon occupies the Pescadores in an attempt to persuade China to open trade. The Ming court rejects his proposal.

(August 26, 1624-February 1, 1662)

*1624: Ming China opens trade with the Dutch. The Dutch establish a trading base for commerce with Japan and coastal China. Dutch official Maarten Sonk takes up his new post at Tayuan (present-day Anping District, Tainan County) beginning the Dutch administration of Taiwan.
*1624: Dutch begin construction of Fort Zeelandia which is completed ten years later.
*1626: Spain sends an expedition to Santissima Trinidad (Keelung) and build Fort San Salvador due to the Dutch threat to Chinese and Japanese trade to the Spanish Philippines.
*1628: Spanish establish a settlement at Tamsui and build Fort Santo Domingo in an attempt to attract Chinese merchants.
*1642: With the Dutch in southern Taiwan and the Spanish in northern Taiwan, confrontation between the two adversaries were inevitable and eventually the Dutch drive the Spanish out of Taiwan, becoming the sole ruling power on Taiwan.
*1653: Taiwan becomes the second most profitable trading port in Asia, due to its ideal central location between Japan, China and southeast Asia.

Kingdom of Tungning (1662-1683)

*1662: Koxinga lays siege to Fort Zeelandia with the Dutch surrendering nine months later.

(1683-May 25, 1895)

*1683: The remnant forces of the Ming dynasty are defeated by the Qing dynasty, which has assumed full control over mainland China.

18th Century

*1732: Qing forces under the administration of Yongzheng Emperor conquer Kingdom of Middag.

19th Century

*1874: Japan sends an expedition force of 3,600 soldiers to Taiwan to test the situation for colonizing the island.
*1875: Taiwan is divided into two prefectures, north and south.
*1887: Taiwan is reorganized administratively as a Taiwan Province with Liu Mingchuan as the first governor.
*1884: Keelung and Tamsui harbor are blockaded by the French Navy during the Sino-French War.
*1895: Qing China signs the Treaty of Shimonoseki ceding Taiwan and the Pescadores Islands to Japan after being defeated by the Japanese Navy in the First Sino-Japanese War.

(May 25, 1895-October 21, 1895)

*1895: Pro-Qing officials declare the Republic of Formosa in an attempt to resist the arrival of the Japanese. Tang Ching-sung (唐景崧) named president.

(June 2, 1895-October 25, 1945)

*1899: The Japanese Imperial government heavily suppresses any opposition to its rule, having systematically eliminated all anti-Japanese factions on the island. POV-statement|date=December 2007
*1899: Bank of Taiwan established to encourage Japanese investment into Taiwan.
*1899: Taiwan yen is issued by the Bank of Taiwan with an exchange ratio on par with the Japanese yen.

20th Century

*1901: Railroad between Keelung and Hsinchu rebuilt.
*1904: Taiwan bank notes issued.
*1905: Earthquake in Chiayi.
*1905: First population census. (First Provisional Taiwan Household Registration Survey)
*1905: Taiwan becomes financially self-sufficient and is weaned off subsidies from Japan's central government.
*1907: Beipu Incident led by Cai Ching-lin (蔡清琳).
*1908: North-South (Western Line) Railway completed.


*1913: Miaoli Incident.
*1915: Tapani Incident, largest revolt in Taiwanese history; over 100 protesters killed by Japanese authorities.
*1915: Silai Temple Incident led by Yu Ching-fang (余清芳).

Dōka: "Integration" (1919-1935)

*1921: Taiwanese Cultural Association founded.
*1921: "Petition to Establish a Taiwan Parliament" movement begins.
*1923: Crown Prince Hirohito (Later Emperor) of Japan visits Taiwan.
*1924: Yilan Line Railroad completed.
*1926: Hwatung Line Railroad completed.
*1927: Taiwanese People's Party, Taiwan's first political party, founded.
*1928: Taihoku Imperial University (now National Taiwan University) founded.
*1930: Jianan (or Chianan) Canal (嘉南大圳) completed.
*1930: Wushe Incident; Japan forcefully crushes rebellion by the Atayal aborigine group.
*1935: Earthquake in Miaoli.
*1935: Exposition to Commemorate the 40th Anniversary of the Beginning of Administration in Taiwan.

Kōminka: "Subjects of the Emperor" (1936-1945)

*1937: Four national parks planned.
*1937: Sun Moon Lake Hydroelectric Power Plant completed.
*1939: Industrial production surpasses agricultural production.
*1941: Taiwan Revolutionary League formed to coordinate anti-Japan resistance.
*1941: Segregation of primary schools between Japanese and Taiwanese children ends.
*1941: Pingtung Line Railroad completed
*1943: Compulsory primary education begins. Enrollment rates reached 71.3% for Taiwanese children (including 86.4% for aborigine children) and 99.6% for Japanese children in Taiwan making Taiwan's enrollment rate the second highest in Asia after Japan.
*1945: Popular Legislature Election Law enacted.
*1945: Japan (then including Taiwan) defeated in World War II by United States military forces, United States directs Japanese forces to surrender to the ROC as per General Order No. 1. Chen Yi appointed as Chief Executive of Taiwan as ROC proclaims Taiwan retrocession.

(October 25, 1945-1949)

*1947: 228 Incident; "White Terror" begins.
*1947: US consulate in Taipei proposed "status of Taiwan is undetermined" and "Taiwan Under UN trustee" program in March; proposal was rejected by the United States State Department.
*1947: Chen Yi recalled and Taiwan Provincial Government established.
*1948: National Assembly of the Republic of China passes Temporary Provisions Effective During the Period of Communist Rebellion.
*1949: April 6 Incident.
*1949: The New Taiwan dollar is issued, exchanged at 1:40,000 old Taiwan dollars.
*1949: Kuomintang army defeated in the Chinese Civil War, flees in exile to Taiwan with 2 million refugees.


*1949: The capital of the Republic of China (ROC) relocated from Nanjing to Taipei.


*1951: Treaty of San Francisco; Japan officially renounced claims to Taiwan (thus superseding Treaty of Shimonoseki), but without designating a recipient.
*1958: 823 Artillery War.
*1959: August 7 Flood: serious flooding in central Taiwan.
*1960: Free China Incident.


*1964: Shihmen Reservoir completed.
*1964: Peng Ming-min arrested for the draft of "A Declaration of Formosan Self-salvation".


*1971: The seat for "China" at the United Nations Security Council is assumed by the People's Republic of China, in place of the ROC.
*1972: The United States establishes diplomatic ties with the People's Republic of China, and acknowledges without explicitly endorsing the One China Policy in the Shanghai Communique.
*1975: President Chiang Kai-Shek dies. Yen Chia-kan assumes the presidency until May 20, 1978.
*1978: Chiang Ching-kuo elected President.
*1979: The United States passes the Taiwan Relations Act, which affirms US commitment to defend Taiwan militarily and to treat Taiwan as a state for most purposes of U.S. law.
*1979: Kaohsiung Incident.
*1979: Western Line Railroad fully electrified; North-Link Line completed.
*1980: Lin Family Murders on the anniversary of the 228 Incident.
*1980: Hsinchu Science Park founded.


*1981: Chen Wun-cheng (陳文成) Incident.
*1984: Labor Standards Law enacted.
*1986: Typhoon Wayne makes landfall in the west coast of central Taiwan.
*1986: Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), the first oppositional political party after World War II, formed illegally from the Tangwai movement.
*1986: Yuan T. Lee wins the Nobel Prize in chemistry.
*1987: Martial law lifted.
*1988: President Chiang Ching-kuo dies; Lee Teng-hui assumes the presidency.
*1988: Bans on publishing newspapers lifted.
*1989: Bans on establishing new commercial banks lifted.
*1990: Taiwan Wild Lily Student Movement in Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall.


*1991: Legislative Yuan and National Assembly elected in 1947 were forced to resign.
*1991: Opposition parties legalized.
*1991: South-Link Line Railroad completed.
*1992: Fair Trade Law enacted.
*1992: The first democratic election of the Legislative Yuan.
*1994: National Health Insurance begins.
*1995: US government reverses policy and allows President Lee Teng-hui to visit the US. The People's Republic of China responds with the Third Taiwan Strait Crisis by launching a series of missiles into the waters off Taiwan. The Taiwan stock market loses one-third of its value.
*1996: President Bill Clinton dispatches the USS Nimitz supercarrier to patrol the Taiwan Strait.
*1995: 228 Incident monument erected; President Lee Teng-hui publicly apologizes on behalf of the KMT.
*1996: The first direct presidential election; Lee Teng-hui elected.
*1996: Muzha Line of the Taipei Rapid Transit System completed.
*1997: Danshui Line of the Taipei Rapid Transit System completed.
*1997: Private cellular phone companies begin services.
*1999: Chi-Chi earthquake.
*2000: Chen Shui-bian, the opposition candidate from the DPP, elected president by a lead of 2.5% of votes marking the end of the KMT status as the ruling party. Voter turnout was 82.69%; first peaceful transfer of power.
*2000: Yilan Line Railroad electrified.

21st Century


*2001: Three mini-links between Kinmen, Matsu and the mainland of Fujian begins.
*2001: Private fixed-line telephone companies begin services.
*2001: Serious flooding caused by Typhoon Nari.
*2002: Entry into the World Trade Organization.
*2002: Penetration rate of cellular phones exceeds 100%.
*2003: SARS outbreaks.
*2003: North-Link Line railroad electrified.
*2004: Second north-south freeway completed.
*2004: 228 Hand-in-Hand Rally.
*2004: President Chen Shui-bian is re-elected by a margin of 0.22% votes after being shot the day before.
*2004: Taipei 101 becomes World's Tallest Building.
*2005: The first direct commercial airplane flights from Beijing to Taipei for the Chinese New Year.
*2005: The PRC passes an "anti-secession law" authorizing the use of force against Taiwan and the ROC government should it formally declare independence. In response, 1.6 million people marched in Taipei against China's "anti-secession law". Similar marches occur across the world by Taiwanese nationalists. Protests against the PRC were held worldwide, including, but not limited to: Chicago, New York City, Washington DC, Paris, and Sydney.
*2005: The KMT visits mainland China for the first time since 1949.
*2005: President Chen is invited and attends the funeral of Pope John Paul II. He is the first Taiwanese president to visit the Vatican.
*2005: The National Assembly of the Republic of China convenes for the last time to implement several constitutional reforms, including single-member two-vote districts, and votes to transfer the power of constitutional reform to the popular ballot, essentially abolishing itself.
*2006: Taiwan's first high speed rail line, Taiwan High Speed Rail, begins operation.
*2007: Taiwan applies for membership in the United Nations under the name "Taiwan", and is rejected by the General Assembly.
*2008: March 22 presidential election; with 58.48% of the vote, KMT candidate Ma defeats DPP candidate Hsieh. Many voters boycott the referenda on whether and how to join UN so the level of voter participation required for referenda to be considered valid is not achieved.
*2008: July - the first direct China-Taiwan flights begin in nearly 6 decades, in a new sign of improving ties. [ [http://edition.cnn.com/2008/TRAVEL/07/04/taiwan.china/index.html Historic China-Taiwan flights begin - CNN.com ] ] [ [http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/asia-pacific/7488965.stm BBC NEWS | World | Asia-Pacific | Direct China-Taiwan flights begin ] ] [ [http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2008/jul/05/china China resumes direct flights to Taiwan after 60 years | World news | The Guardian ] ]


ee also

* Timeline of Republic of China history (1912-1949)

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