Gunsan is a city that played an important role during Japanese colonial rule. They were one of the regions that led the independence movement against the Japanese empire to recover their lands. Many protests were held in this area which has now become the Guam historic park, a place where you can learn about the past.
The Guam historic park is a place where you can learn about the past. It is located in Guam-dong, which is the place where the independence movement began in the region. It occurred 4 days after the 1st of March Independence Movement began in Seoul, in 1919. The movement was led by teachers, students, and Guam church members. The church has now become a main attraction of this park.
It was in March 2012 when the government decided to turn this area into a sanctuary. Due to its importance, it was adopted as a historic park. Now, you can learn about the Japanese colonial era, the hardships, and the heroes through immersive education at this place.
Plus every year there are vast activities to recreate the past and keep the memory of the movement alive.
In Modern Times
Just as Gunsan city planned, this is a place where the past and present coexist. Beside the old buildings, you can now even find new areas to do exercise. There are also playgrounds and many benches to sit and enjoy the view.
Therefore, it feels like the perfect place to hang out on any day. You can have a relaxing evening while learning about the past.
This place is not big. However, if you plan to enter each one of the exhibition halls, then it might take around a half day to tour. The main museum has a lot of information as well as the former Guam church.
Former Guam Church
This is the most meaningful place in this park. This is because it was the starting point for the movement of independence in Gunsan, which was on March 5th, 1919.
Guam Church was established in 1896 by the missionaries W. M. Junkin and Adam D. D. Who taught about patriotism, in addition to religion.
It is important to mention, that some of the important figures of this movement, were members of the Guam church. Or at least, were linked to the other places that W.M Junkin established. Such as the Guam Jesus Hospital and the Youngmyeong School.
Now, it is a memorial hall. They also show the Bible and talk about the religious practices they had. Their religious beliefs had a strong link with the wish for Independence. Needless to say, this place focuses more on the story of the Guam church’s members who participated in the protests, rather than the church itself.
In case you want to know more about this place, we recommend you to read the next article.
Modern Guam Church
Since Gunsan is a city that is always seeking to become modern, they built this church in 2009. It was part of an urbanization project.
Here, they also hold exhibitions regularly. They show us touching stories reflecting on the past, including the joys and sorrow of the people who went through that period, which are fully on display. You can learn the link between the church and the movement for independence as well.
But the most important thing is that there is a memorial project every year. Where they hold various recreational activities. And they do performances as well. To not forget this part of history. If you want to know more about this place, we have prepared this article for you.
The coolest thing about this park is that it is up on a hill, but do not worry! You will not have to do hiking, as it is not as high as it sounds. However, be prepared to go up and down.
The path is curved. And, by following it, you will reach the highest point of the hill – so as the lowest point. It is important to mention that due to how these paths were constructed, is not tiring at all to take a stroll.
In some areas, you can see what seems the old Korean flag, painted on the floor.
Gunsan 3.1 Movement Centennial Memorial Hall
The highlight of the Guam Historic Park is for sure, this museum where you can learn about the past in depth. Here, you can find the complete information on how the events happened. It is completely dedicated to the first movement of independence.
From the outside to the inside, you can get to know everything about the Declaration of Independence as well. But the best thing is that the way they teach you about it, it is entertaining.
As they showcase many replicas. And even have some photo spots! Where you can feel as if you were back in that period.
They have storytelling as well. This means that through the speakers, you will hear a recreation of that day. To be in their shoes and understand more that feeling of wishing for freedom.
But the best part is for sure the immersion education area. There, kids and adults can learn about history through video games. For example, there is a game where you need to use a bicycle to run away from the enemies and reach your compatriots.
As a foreigner that does not know much about the past, it was a great way to learn about it.
In case you want to know more about this museum, we recommend you to read the next article.
An Honorary Monument
If you go to the back of the museum, you will find these stairs, which will lead you to the main monument of this park.
At this commemorative statue, you can read a summary of what happened during the first movement of Independence. Additionally, you can also get to know who where the leaders and heroes are.
Guam Historic Park is for sure the best place to learn about the past. Since it is constructed in the area where the movement of independence was held in Gunsan. Plus it now has a museum that has all the information on it.
If you have already gone, what are your thoughts? Let us know in the comments!
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