SEOUL, SOUTH KOREA, February 28, 2019 — A special exhibition titled the “March First Independence Movement in Seoul and Pyeongyang” will be held at the Seoul Museum of History from March 1 to May 26, 2019, to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Movement. The opening ceremony is scheduled to take place at 3 p.m. on February 28.
The actual preparations for the March First Movement started from January 1919, and in February, believers in Cheondogyo (a religion which began during the last years of the Joseon Dynasty), Christians, Buddhists, and students decided to hold a ceremony for the Declaration of Independence together. On the night of February 27, the Declaration of Independence was printed at Boseongsa printing office and distributed to the entire country on February 28. On March 1, the Manse demonstrations started simultaneously in nine cities including Seoul and Pyeongyang. This time’s exhibition highlights the systematic preparations of the March First Independence Movement and its detailed implementation process in Seoul and Pyeongyang.
The exhibition includes the display of the Declarations of Independence presented in Korea, Japan, Gando and the Maritime Province in Russia during the March First Movement, as they are brought together at one place after 100 years. Original copies of Jo So-ang’s “declaration of independence of Korea (the declaration of independence of 1918),” two copies of “declaration of independence” announced by the National Assembly of Korea in Russia, and the “declaration of independence printed by Shinmunkwan printing house (the declaration of independence of 1919),” which is at the central library of Cheondogyo, will be unveiled. “The declaration of independence of 1919 printed by Boseong printing house” and the “February 8th declaration of independence, Japanese version” as well as the “petition for calling the Korean people’s congress” which are kept in the diplomatic archives of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan will be displayed their copy versions.
As to Pyeongyang, 19 items that belonged to Na In-hyeop, who was one of the 33 leaders in Pyeongyang as well as a Cheondogyo leader, will be presented, and a map of Pyeongyang, which was kept by the Dr. Hall couple, who were missionaries, as well as photographs of the place where the declaration of independence started, will be exhibited.
In addition, a more vivid approach to the situation at the time is expected to be possible through various exhibition contents. It is the first time for the visitors that they are given the chance to read the declaration of independence themselves, as their voices will be resonating in Tapgol Park, as part of the exhibition’s program focusing on visitor experience. Also, videos titled “the production and distribution of the declaration of independence,” and “A patriotic martyr of Gyeongseong (Seoul’s old name)” will be presented, to allow the viewers a stereoscopic approach to the situation back then.
The exhibition is free of charge, opening from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. on weekdays and from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturdays, Sundays and public holidays. It is closed every Monday except holidays. For more information, visit the Seoul Museum of History website (www.museum.seoul.kr). (Inquiries 02-724-0274)