Foreign Historical Documents on Taiwan
Harold M. Otness, a retired professor of library science at Southern Oregon University, United States, and his wife, Ms. Chang Min-hui, in December 2014 donated a total of 604 foreign-language historical documents and books on Taiwan. Professor Otness started collecting books on Taiwan in the 1980s. By 2003, he had collected nearly 600 precious items produced between 1704 and 2003. They include historical files, academic journals, official reports, literature, and postwar Taiwan Studies. The collection provides thorough perspectives on Taiwan from a Western eye. It includes a book published in London in 1704 in which hoaxer George Psalmanazar presented a fictitious history and geography of Taiwan; writings on Taiwan by 19th-century Westerners such as George Leslie Mackay, William Campbell, Campbell N. Moody, and James W. Davidson; observations on Taiwan by Westerners during the 1895-1945 period of Japanese rule, including research papers on Taiwan indigenous peoples published in 1922 by Janet B. Montgomery McGovern, a British female anthropologist; and reports and reviews about the Kuomintang (KMT, Chinese Nationalist) government that ruled Taiwan after World War II, such as A Pair of Oysters (on customs and political circumstances in 1950s Taiwan) and Green Plums and a Bamboo Horse: A Picture of Formosa (Taiwan in the 1960s, when it was ruled by Chiang Kai-shek).