In 1841 A.D. flooding of the lower reaches of the Yellow River devastated the City of Kaifeng in Henan Province, tearing through the city and destroying more historic landmarks. Much of the city was reconstructed in 1843 A.D.
In 1854 AD unusual rainfalls upstream caused massive breeching of levies in Shandong Province, diverting the river into a new more northern trajectory and shifting the mouth of the Yellow River by 100's of kilometers.
In 1887 a huge flooding of the Huang He in the lower reaches in Henan and Shandong Province once more changed the path of the river and killed and estimated 900,000 to 2,000,000 Chinese.
The river has changed course in a major way at least five times, the last one taking place in 1897 AD when the river changed its course in the lower reaches along the Shanxi-Hebei borders and in Shandong Province.
The Yellow River has dispenses many blessings and an equal number of sorrows throughout the Ages. Many times the river flooded or worse, changed course dramatically, wiping out whole villages and cities in the process. Many of the course changes of the river have in its lower reaches and in the North China Plain. The first
(well) recored major shift of the path of the Yellow River in this region occured in 11 AD. Other recorded years of disaster were 1048 AD, 1128 AD, 1234 AD, 1391 AD, 1546 AD and 1854 AD.
In 1907 AD the first ever Iron Bridge was built across the Yellow River at Lanzhou. This bridge, today known as Zhongshan No. 1 Yellow River Bridge was constructed at the ancient crossing point of the Yellow River and the main pathway of the Silk Road out of Chang'An, for over 2000 years already the most crucial crossing point along the entire length of the river.
The original bridge, which was financed by German Banker, still stands today and is known as the Zhongshan (an honorary title for Dr. Sun Yat Sen as founder of the Republic of China) No.1 Huanghe Bridge, crossing the River at 'Gold City Gorge' (Jincheng Guan). On the other side lies the Western Pass (西关).