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  Mituo straw mats
  Category: Handicraft
 Kaohsiung inhabitants wove their dreams into the straw mats for four decades.
 You thought straw mats are an exclusive specialty of Tachia, Taichung? Wrong. The material Cyperus tegetiformis (also called “mat straw”) is grown in the low-lying lands in Kaohsiung’s Luchu, Gongshan, Wuchia and Mituo townships.
 In Mituo, “mat straw” grew in Weng-an, Yencheng and other villages. The campus of Mituo Junior High School in the Mituo village used to be “mat straw” fields. So was the huge piece of seashore land in front of Nan-an Primary School in the Tahti village.
 The 1970’s and 1980’s saw the peak period of straw mats. In the Mituo village, the Chungcheng West Road between today’s Mituo Primary School and Mituo Junior High School was virtually a “straw mat street”. And the Miching and Kuangho villages also had production centers for straw mats.
 In those communities, most households installed machinery for weaving straw mats on a fully automatic basis. The straw mat industry thrived for almost four decades and, together with leaf hats, laid down the economical foundation for Mituo.
 As industry advanced, replacements for natural straw mats gained popularity. And mainland straw mats are much cheaper. Now, you can only get straw mats from Chen, Wangchang’s plant.
   
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