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Soudabeh Maamouri, Marzieh Mansoorizadeh, Hassan Akbari,
year 6, Issue 19 (5-2022)
Abstract

Abstract
The customs buildings complex at the Persian Gulf in Bushehr Province was built at the end of the Qajar era and the beginning of the Pahlavi era. These buildings are very similar. All these buildings are architecturally built in the same way. All these buildings have two floors and match each other. The architecture of these buildings is derived from the architectural style of the second half of the 18th century and 19th century of the West. This style entered Iran’s architecture as a symbol of modernity and strongly influenced Iranian architecture. It has to be mentioned that this influence was much greater in the last years of the Qajar era compared to its first years. By using the historical research method and library studies, it is tried to collect the necessary data about the research subject and obtain adequate understanding of the customs and telegraph offices in Bushehr Province. 
Keywords: Telegraph Offices, Customs, Bushehr Province, Qajar Era.

Introduction
Bushehr was considered one of the important commercial and cultural centers since ancient times, which would connect the Elamites with the Mesopotamia on one hand and the Melos in present-day India with Oman and the Mesopotamia on the other hand, and this is emphasized in linguistic sources apart from archaeological data. (Hesari et al., 2011; 247) There are some ruins of an Elamite port that are found in a place called Reyshahr, near Bushehr, where an inscription of Šutruk-Nahhunte was discovered and read. This city is probably Liyan Elamite, and it seems that until the 15th century BC, it was under the control of the Elamites and it was a city dependent on Anshan, rather than Khuzestan. Even its name has an Elamite root, and the word NIM is placed in front of the name of this city. Based on the texts of Ur III, Steinkeller has dated Liyan to Bushehr of the late 3rd and 2nd millennium BC and has suggested that Anshan had a direct route to Mesopotamia through this port (Steinkeller, 1982: 252). The new history of trades in Bushehr began with the kingdom of Nader Shah Afshar, which has played a special role in the last two centuries of Iran. By the order of Nader Shah, the main boundary of Bushehr was built by Sheykh Naser Abu Mehiri. (Hamidi, 2010: 50), but the overall structure of Bushehr today was formed in the Qajar era (Ranjabr et al., 2010: 24). In the 18th century, Bushehr was considered as the most important commercial port of Iran in open waters. (Dashti, 2001: 117). The presence of customs in Bushehr Province during the Qajar era caused most of the major countries of the world, including England, Russia, Germany, France, etc., to have a political representative office in this city. This city became the southern gate of Iran for the exchange of political ideas and cultural relations. During the Qajar era, the English telegraph line extended from London to India. This line in Bushehr Province extended to Fars Province, and the line was transmitted from different countries, including Iran, either on land or sea cables. 

Research Introduction 
The main objective of this research is to study the reason for the exitance of customs in Bushehr and the telegraph houses and studying their architecture. The research question is: why are there several customs and telegraph houses in Bushehr? And what are their architectural characteristics? 

Bushehr Custom Building 
The first modern custom building of Bushehr Province, known as Chehar Borj (Four-Tower) is in Bushehr City. This custom was built and established during Naser al-Din Shah Qajar era, by Mo’in-O-Tojjar-e Bushehri at his expense with the plans of the Belgians. This mansion was known as Four-Tower at the time of its building and it was the center of the governance of Persian Gulf ports and islands during the Qajar era. Whenever the governer of Bushehr would come to Bushehr City for the governance of the city from Tehran or Shiraz, they would settle in this place. This building was designed by Joseph Naus, known as Belgian Monsieur Naus. (Fig. 1-8)

Bulkheyr Custom 
This building is a two-floor building facing the sea. The eastern and western façades of the building are similar. The two floors match each other and share the same façade. There are three rooms on each floor and all three rooms are connected to each other. There is a small room on the north side which might have been a pantry. There are stairwells on the northern and southern sides of the building. (Fig. 9-14)

Dayer Custom 
This building is a two-floor building facing the sea. The eastern and western façades of the building are similar. The two floors match each other and share the same façade. There are three rooms on each floor and all three rooms are connected to each other. There is a small room on the north side which might have been a pantry. There are stairwells on the northern and southern sides of the building. (Fig. 15-19)
Kangan Custom 
This building has two stories and both stories are similar and they both match each other. The balcony with its beautiful round columns has led to prominence of the building. There has been a stair well in the south part of the building that would connect the second floor to the roof. There is an office, a lobby and a kitchen on each floor. There are squares on the top of each door that were used for lighting. (Fig. 20)

Mohammad ‘Ameri Custom
The unique feature of this building is its shape and design, which was built uniformly on the entire coast of the Persian Gulf. This building is one of the buildings of the Qajar customs whose remains are left, and it was used in the early Pahlavi era. (Fig. 21) 

Lavar-e Saheli Custom 
This building is built in two floors and has an entrance that opens to the west. The two floors are built in the same shape and match each other. There has been a staircase in the south of the building that connected the upper floor and the roof. (Fig. 22) 

Bushehr Telegraph Office 
The telegraph office was initially in Jabri neighborhood and then it is moved to Haft Bangleh in Bahmani neighborhood. The marine transmission cable line extended from Haft Bangle to Karachi in India. The last telegraph and post office in that time was located in Kuti neighborhood near British Consulate behind Shahdokht school, that is ruined now. During Naser al-Din Shah era, telegraph offices were only established by the British and they were managed by British presidents and Iranian employees. 

Conclusion 
Undeniably, architecture changes during any era according to the lifestyle of people in any country. From the middle of the Qajar era, with the change of intellectual resources and thoughts ruling the society, as well as the awareness of the progress, different needs were felt compared to the past. They saw meeting these needs and the solutions in following the Western methods. The establishment of Dār ul-Funun, sending students to Europe, hiring foreign teachers and publishing newspapers, triggered a change in social and political attitudes during the Qajar era. The atmosphere ruling the architecture of Qajar era also followed the same attitude. From the middle of Naser al-Din Shah era, the confrontation between tradition and modernity gradually led to the victory of modernity, and architecture lost its old forms and found on a western form. It seems that the frequent trips of the Qajar kings to Europe left a significant impact in the field of architecture. The kings and princes wanted to implement the western architectural design in their land. Western examples also quickly became popular among the people and all over Iran. This architecture is characterized by the protruding and columned main entrance and grand ceremonial stairs, and the rooms are built in two wings on the first and second floors. The customs buildings in Bushehr Province were built at the end of the Qajar era and the beginning of the Pahlavi era, and they were among the first buildings in Bushehr Province that appeared with a different architecture, and their design is not derived from the architecture of that period, but it is influenced by the architecture of the West, and due to extensive connections of Bushehr with other countries, the role of foreign architects has been prominent in this province. Care should be taken in order to preserve valuable buildings such as these customs building which were studied in this article, so that they are not destructed.


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