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Rise of success

During 1778, Yingyin Lin moved to Taiwan’s Tamsui Hsing-Chuang (what we know now as Taipei’s Hsin-Chuang) from Longhsi, Changzhou, Fujian, China, taught as a teacher, and returned to China in 1785.  According to the examination by historic scholars, Yingyin Lin was the first ancestor who settled in Taiwan.  His second son, Pin Hou Lin came to Taiwan at age sixteen (1782) to seek for his father, and started working under the Cheng-Ku’s rice factory.   Pin Hou Lin was very good at merchandising and worked hard; therefore, Cheng-Ku lent  him some money to start up his owm business.  At the time, transporting rice was considered one of the largest trading business. Pin Hou Lin worked specifically on transporting rice.  Due to the sudden Shuang Wen Lin’s incident, prices for rice went sky rocket which gave Pin Hou Lin a great profit.

Afterwards, Pin-hou Lin and Shao-sian Lin partnered up and took over Taiwan’s salt industry and further accumulated more assets. When Ping Hou Lin was already forty, he decided to head back home and served as a government official for seven years.  Later on, Pin Hou Lin was no further interest in bereucracy. He resigned position and resided in Taiwan in the 21st year of Jian Ching Reign (1816).  At the time, Taipei’s Tamsui was involved with the frequent armed clashes between Chang-Chou and Chuan-Chou.  In order to avoid disasters, in the 23rd year of Jian Ching Reign (1818), he moved to San-Ceng (today’s Fu An Village in Taoyuan County’s Dasi Township), built mansions with fortress-like walls for defense against outside, cultivated and expended new farmland, and earned a lot in rent.  After that Hou Ping Lin helped the government to handle citizens affairs many times and also requested the government to build Tamsui City.  In the 27th year of Tao Kuang Reign (1847), for the convenience of collecting rent, Lin built a Bi Yi Guan and this marked the beginning of construction of the Lin Family in Ban-Chiao.

Lin had five sons.  They were Guo Dong Lin, Guo Jen Lin, Guo Hua Lin, Guo Yin Lin , and Guo Fang Lin.  They ran the Lin family business that was divided in five major shops named as Ying-Ji, Shui-Ji, Ben-Ji, Si-Ji, and Yuan-Ji.  With the first letter combined from the names of these five business companies, the phrase  ,Ying-Shui-Ben-Si-Yuan, means that one should be grateful for all the things they enjoy . The Lin family' business name was also called “Ben-Yuan.”

  Of the five children, Guo Hua Lin and Guo Fang Lin were the most capable. They expanded their business with ambition.  Since the fight between Chang-Chou and Chuan-Chou was still going on. To avoid any disaster, with the invitation from local residents, the two brothers decided to build three-courtyard House right by the Bi Yi Guan in the first year of Hsien Feng Reign (1851).  In the third year of Hsien Feng Reign, this construction was finished and the Lin family moved in.  In the fifth year of Hsien Feng Reign, they started to build a castle to avoid harassments from the Chuan-Chou people.

  Soon after, the Lind Family started to build a garden behind the mansion and hired scholars such as Si Cun Lu and Guan Jiao Hsieh as teachers. These scholars also enlighten cultural development to the northern end of Taiwan.  Lin family’s third generation, Wei-yuan Lin and Wei-rang Lin inherited the past two generations wealth and became the wealthiest family in Taiwan.  After Sino-French war, Wei-yuan Lin assisted Ming-chuan Liu, the first governor of Taiwan, in cultivating the land, supporting , and promoting Taiwan’s industries and made new systems of farmland.  Today, the Ben-Yuan Lin’s Family Mansion and Garden that visitors can see is under the successful operation done by the current generation.

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