This blog was created for USASTRATCOM Long Lines Battalion Army personnel who served in Taiwan during the 1965-72 time frame. Specifically, those who lived and worked in and around Taipei are the target. If you worked at the Grass Mountain or Gold Mountain facilities or anywhere in downtown Taipei, we would like to hear from you. All are welcome to visit and contribute to this blog. Your comments and pictures are encouraged.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

July 4, 1969 Celebration

You haven't experienced a really great July 4th celebration unless you are in the armed forces and live overseas.

Independence Day has a deeper meaning when you are a minority in a foreign country.

For a considerable length of time, AFNT advertised the terrific fireworks that would be exploded at the Taipei American School on that evening of the 4th.

We showed up along with our friend who brought his camera and a tripod. He was tinkering with f-stops and shutter speeds to get pictures of the fireworks as they exploded.

We've never seen so many rockets explode in one evening. There was a constant thump when the rockets were ignited, followed by the beautiful explosions above. (Ahhhhhh!)

It had to have gone on for at least an hour straight.

Pacific Stars and Stripes covered planned festivities throughout the island.

After awhile, many people just lay on the ground and looked up.

For some fireworks, just click HERE.

Earlier, our neighbor thought it would be a great idea if he spliced a few rolls of firecrackers together.

Then the contraption was hung from the third floor of his apartment building on down to near the ground.

After the top row was lit, the explosions continued down the side of the building.

Black gunpowder stains remained on the building when we left the island.

Image courtesy of

There is a real irony here, of course. After WWII, products made in Japan and sold in the United States were often the butt of jokes.

Something similar in nature could have been said about China. As kids, we suspected that China was great at making firecrackers.

Anything else? Not that we knew. The ignorant bliss of childhood.

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