C is for Changsha

A street in Changsha, 1910s-30s, Bannister collection, ba04-44

A snapshot of a busy thoroughfare in Changsha, capital of Hunan province. The men are not sporting the ‘queue’, so this is a post-1911 shot, and the flat cap on the left dates it perhaps to the 1920s at least. Changsha had a tumultous time in the republic. It was the scene of bloody purges targetting the Communists in early 1927, as the revolutionary alliance between the Communist Party the Guomindang collapse; it was held briefly by Communist forces in 1930, and beseieged and briefly held by the Japanese. The snapshot comes from the Banister family albums. William Banister (1855-1928) was Anglican Bishop of Kwangsi-Hunan between 1909-1923.

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