Old Incheon: A Walk through Korean History since 1876

Date: 
Sunday, June 16, 2013 -
1:30pm to 6:30pm
Destination(s): 
Various neighborhoods in Incheon
Cost: 
W20,000 for members and W25,000 for non-members
Tour Leader: 
Dr. Robert J. Fouser

During this excursion of old Incheon, we will explore the many layers of Korean history since 1876 when the Treaty of Ganghwa with Japan forced Korea to open three ports to trade, one of which was Incheon. Incheon, or Chemulpo as it was called at the time, developed soon after to serve the needs of foreign traders. Trade brought Western missionaries, who built churches and schools; Chinese traders established a community that became Korea's largest Chinatown. Many of the buildings and other landmarks of this early "international history" still remain. After Japan annexed Korea in 1910, Incheon quickly developed into a city that served Japan's purposes in Korea. A number of houses and other buildings from Japanese colonial era remain, giving a rare glimpse into the organization of urban space at the time. Incheon played a central role in the Korean War when General Douglas McArthur made a dramatic amphibious landing that eventually drove North Korean forces north toward the Chinese border. A famous statue of McArthur in Freedom Park honors this event. From the 1970s onward, Incheon grew east toward Seoul, causing the hollowing out of the history city center, and rancorous debates over redevelopment.

We will begin the excursion with a walk through Baedari, an area designated for redevelopment that has recently attracted artists and has become a center for anti-redevelopment movements. The area also has some important historic school and missionary buildings.
From there, we will make our way to heart of old Incheon by going through a neighborhood contain Japanese Western-style houses build during the colonial period. As we make our way to Freedom Park, we will visit several historically important churches, including the Dap-dong Catholic Church. We will walk through Freedom Park, stopping to enjoy the vistas of the port of Incheon, on our way to historic city center with several excellent examples of late 19th- and early 20th-century Western-style architecture and a number of buildings from the Japanese colonial period. Our final stop will be "cafe pot_R," a café in a restored colonial-period merchant house. The excursion will end there at about 17:30. Incheon Station (the terminus of subway line #1) offers the easiest way back to Seoul. Participants may wish to stay in Incheon and have dinner in Chinatown on the way to Incheon Station.

The excursion begins at 13:30 at Exit #3 of Dowon Station (near the end of subway line #1). The walk is mostly flat, but there are a number of ups and downs; comfortable walking shoes are recommended.

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TO: R.A.S. (02) 763-9483
Please reserve space on this Excursion for the following:
Name: _________________________________ Member _____ Non-Member _____
Name: _________________________________ Member _____ Non-Member _____
Phone No. (Mobile) ________________ (Home/Office) ______________________

Cost: 20,000 for RASKB members and 25,000 for non-members
Please make payment to the following account: Shinhan Bank Account #100-026-383501 (RAS-KB)

Contact Us

Royal Asiatic Society Korea Branch
Room 611, Korean Christian Building, Daehak-ro 19 (Yeonji-dong), Jongno-gu, Seoul 03129
왕립아세아학회한국지부
[03129] 서울시 종로구 대학로 19 (연지동) 한국기독교회관 611호

Office is open Monday through Friday from 10 to 5 but we are short staffed and there are meetings elsewhere often: please call or email before your visit.
Phone (02) 763-9483 FAX (02) 766-3796
Email - royalasiatickorea@gmail.com

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