Kings of Chaktomuk Period
After the reigned of King Ang Doung, the capital city of Cambodia was moved from Oudong to Chaktomuk (Phnom Penh). And a new period of history has started.
1. King Norodom (1859-1904). Reigned after his father, King Ang Doung, in Oudong.
In the reign of King Norodom, Cambodia started new pages of history, in which Cambodia came has come into the French sphere in 1863 and signed a protectorate agreement with France in August 11 1863, to void the threaten from Siam and Vietnam. In 1866, the capital city was officially moved from Oudong to Phnom Penh.
After visited many modern cities such as Hong Kong, Macao, and Manila in 1872, King Norodom has decided to make changes in the country’s regulations related to Royal affairs, government, taxation, court, and slavery, in the purpose of modernize the country.
2. King Sisovath (1904-1927), He was the son of King Ang Doung, brother of King Norodom.There were many remarkable events related to many sectors of the country to be reminded in the reign of King Sisovath.
Many provinces of Cambodia which lose to Siam and Laos were returned. The so called three big provinces: Battambang, Siem Reap, and Sisophon were returned in 1907. This event is being memorized by the sculpture built at the north of Wat Phnom until today.
King Sisovath was paying special attention in the country’s education. In 1912, there were a Royal Regulation stated that all parents must send their children to school. And many primary schools were built in villages to support the Royal Regulation.The first secondary school was Sisovath Secondary School, built in Phnom Penh in 1904.
In 1915, King Sisovath has established a commission to compose the first Khmer dictionary. In 1921, the Pali school and the Royal Library were also built.
In 1918, the National Museum of Cambodia were built to house and displaying Khmer ancient sculpture and it keep active until present day.
In economic sector, the first rubber farm was created in Chub (Kampong Cham) in 1921. Since the first farm was successful, many other bigger farms were created in the area of red soil in Kampong Cham and Kratie. Just in 10 years time, the total area of planting rubber plant was 25,000 hectares.
3. King Sisovath Monivong (1927-1941), He was the oldest son of King Sisovath.
In the reign of King Sisovath Monivong, the agriculture sector was going developed. Memot rubber farm, with 550,000 of rubber tree planted in the area of 600 hectares, was the biggest rubber farm in the world in 1931. Many big rice field which were abandoned, stared to be used again. In 1930, a Royal Regulation was applied to create banks for funding the farmers in Battambang, Prey Veng, and Kampong Cham.
In 1932, the first railway in Cambodia was built in the length of 275 km, running from Phnom Penh to Siam border, crossing Battambang. Beside this many road and bridges in all over the country were also built. Especially, Preah Monivong bridge (Spean Chba Ampov) crossing Tonle Sap river was built in the length of 292 meters and inaugurated in Nov 18 1928.