The Spaniards built mines for gold in Hualien in 1622. Permanent settlements began in 1851, when 2,200 Han Chinese farmers led by Huang A-fong (黃阿鳳) from Taipei arrived at Fengchuan (now the area near Hualien Rear Station). In 1875, more farmers, led by Lin Cang-an (林蒼安) from Yilan, settled at Fengchuan.
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