Bodies and Structures 2.0: Deep-Mapping Modern East Asian HistoryMain MenuGet to Know the SiteGuided TourShow Me HowA click-by-click guide to using this siteModulesRead the seventeen spatial stories that make up Bodies and Structures 2.0Tag MapExplore conceptsComplete Grid VisualizationDiscover connectionsGeotagged MapFind materials by geographic locationLensesCreate your own visualizationsWhat We LearnedLearn how multivocal spatial history changed how we approach our researchAboutFind information about contributors and advisory board members, citing this site, image permissions and licensing, and site documentationTroubleshootingA guide to known issuesAcknowledgmentsThank youDavid Ambaras1337d6b66b25164b57abc529e56445d238145277Kate McDonald306bb1134bc892ab2ada669bed7aecb100ef7d5fThis project was made possible in part by a major grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities.
Troops erecting temporary housing
12020-04-30T18:06:56-04:00Kate McDonald306bb1134bc892ab2ada669bed7aecb100ef7d5f355Report on the Progress of Xing'an Tunken, p. 4.plain2021-09-02T10:44:39-04:00Zou Zuohua, Xing An qu tunken (n.p.: Xing An qu tunken gong shu, 1930).Copyright undetermined.Shellen X. WuSXW-0013Kate McDonald306bb1134bc892ab2ada669bed7aecb100ef7d5f
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12020-04-30T18:05:27-04:00Patriots / Colonizers12Who were the colonizers in Xing An?plain2021-10-08T16:25:00-04:0046.46918, 121.24832Xing'an10/1928Shellen X. WuZhang XueliangZou Zuohua
In 1928, officers affiliated with the Manchurian warlord Zhang Xueliang undertook the tunken 屯墾 (land reclamation) of the Xing An region. They also established a Xing An Tunken Bureau, which was headed by Zou Zuohua 鄒作華 (1893-1973). The officer Gao Renfu 高仁绂 (1897-1966) organized three units of men to participate in the settlement.
For these men, the project was first and foremost an effort of national defense. According to the first year report:
The first phase of this tunken project will consist of military reclamation, the second phase civilian reclamation. The two former banners and various Mongolians in the area have never undertaken border defense and have no public safety measures in place to speak of. This is why in addition to launching immigration, construction, transportation, promoting animal husbandry, forestry, and mining, the most important task is to undertake military reclamation and using the military to protect the country and ensure public safety. The true significance of the military reclamation lies in the ability of soldiers who could both join production and protect the country. When they put down their guns and pick up their goes, the soldiers could farm and work to economically develop the region. When they put down their hoes and pick up their guns, they could kill our enemies and reinforce border defense.
After bombastic proclamations, three units of men left the nearest town, Tao'an, in late October of 1928, missing the entire growing season, which meant that they also had to immediately construct emergency housing and endure the harsh winter on the steppes. Camped out near Tao'an town in tents, the soldiers drew curious onlookers before their departure. Under strict military regimentation, the soldiers were told to rise at five in the morning for a jog. During the day they dug out ground dwellings. The real work of settlement began with the coming of the spring. At that time, approximately 4,800 refugees from Shandong and Henan joined the troops in the settlement zone.