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Synapticism

An experiential journal of synchronicity and connection

Linnei 林內

Línnèi 林內 is a rural township in Yúnlín 雲林 on the border with both Changhua 彰化 (to the north) and Nantou (to the east). It was home to a thriving tobacco cultivation industry many decades ago.

Jiuqiong Village Tobacco Barn 九芎村菸樓

An Old Tobacco Barn in Jiuqiong Village
An unexpected find in a small village in Yunlin: a red brick tobacco barn!

What little remains of the historic tobacco industry in central Taiwan 台灣 is disappearing fast. Tobacco cultivation was big business for much of the 20th century but went into sharp decline in the 1980s and essentially ended with globalization and Taiwan’s accession to the WTO. Robust preservation efforts in south and east Taiwan ensure something of this industry will remain for future generations but the situation in the former tobacco cultivation areas of Taichung 台中, Changhua 彰化, and Yúnlín 雲林 is far more ambiguous, and documentation of what cultural assets remain is sparse or nonexistent. For this reason I’ve made an effort to record tobacco barns anytime I encounter them in my travels—as I did while driving through Jiǔqiōng Village 九芎村 on the south side of Linnei in Yúnlín 雲林 earlier this summer.