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Saturday, 8 March 2014

Temporary Capital Memorial Hall, Busan Seo-gu: Temporary Capital of Korean Republic during Korean War


A temporary capital or a provisional capital is a city or town chosen by a government as an interim base of operations due to some difficulty in retaining or establishing control of a different metropolitan area. The most common circumstances leading to this are either a civil war, where control of the capital is contested, or during an invasion, where the designated capital is taken or threatened.

The Temporary Capital Memorial Hall (Hanja: 臨時首都紀念館) is a Temporary Office of the Government of Republic of Korea a.k.a South Korea during the bleakest moment of Korean War (1950~1953). Located at 45 Temporary Capital Memorial Road/ImsiSudo Ginyeom-ro, Bumin-dong 3-ga 22-beonji, Busan Seo-gu - the construction of this complex was completed in August 10th 1926. It is used as the official residence of the Governor of Southern Gyeongsang Province. That time, Busan was a provincial capital of Southern Gyeongsang.

On June 27th 1950 - two days after Korean War commenced, President Syngman Rhee secretly evacuated from Seoul with government officials to the safest place in south-eastern tip of South Korea. This is because the Principal Capital of Korean Republic has been compromised. For 3 years (1950~1953), Busan was the South Korean provisional capital during the time of the Korean War. During this period, this building was used as the president's residence. 

In 1984, this building became the Provisional Capital Memorial Hall, and exhibits pictures and other artifacts from the Korean War. This Building was renovated in April 2000 through November 2001 establishing the current Provisional Capital Memorial Hall. This building is gazetted as Designated Artifact No.53 of Busan Metropole.