China and the Silk Road - Modern History of the Silk Road
A Chronology of the Silk Road
Estimated 500 BC - 14Th Century Emergence Maritime Trading Routes
This page was last updated on: October 30, 2017
This page was last updated on: October 30, 2017
China Report - Historic Map - China (Qing) Empire in 1910 AD
An obviously non-Chinese but western-made Map of the Qing Dynasty Chinese Empire in the year 1910 AD, a year in which China's sovereignty has been under threat and siege for over 70 years.
In this Map of 1910 AD, made one year before the abdication of Last Ching Emperor Xuan Tung (a.k.a.Aisin-Gioro Pu Yi) and the final end of China's Feudal History, China is depicted as in its smallest boundaries and definition. Most notably Manchuria, and Inner Mongolia, both territories nominally under Chinese Control and under Chinese Sovereignty are depicted as separate area's.
Other interesting features of the Map and geography of the Time : after the Sino-Japanese war of 1899 AD, both Korea and the Island of Formosa (now Taiwan / ROC) have been annexed by the Japanese Empire.
1865 - 1874 AD : The "Dungang" Islamic revolts (or Hui Minorities' War, or the Muslim Rebellion) once more temporarily turned Hotan into independent Muslim hands (a time during which the Mogao Caves at Dunhuang were vandalized!). A few years thereafter Hotan briefly became part of the short-lived state known as East Turkestan.
In 1865, while the Dungang Islamic Revolts were ongoing in what today is the Xinjiang-Uyghur Autonomous Region of the Peoples Republic of China (P.R.C.), in Himalayan Territories of north India, the firs steps were made in what later has been dubbed "the Great Game" for Central Asia. In that year,
Modern History of the Silk Road I : 1800 A.D. to 1950 Re-discovery of the Silk Road
1946: French Forces are withdrawn from Lebanon, at the very western end of the silk road. After withdrawal, the country of Lebanon is for the first time factually independent, although having been granted Independence of the Nation had been formally declared as early as 1941.
1946: Jordan (previously since World War I the British protectorate (State) of Transjordania) becomes an Independent State in the form of a constitutional Monarchy led by King Abdullah Ibn Hussein. It is the birth of the Haeshimite Kingdom of Jordania.
April 17, 1946: After a long Colonial Rule and Foreign overlordships, Syria becomes an Independent State as the Syrian Arab Republic.
April 1946: The newly emerging Kurdish state of the "Republic of Mahabad" sign a military alliance with the adjacent newborn state of the "Autonomous Republic of Azerbaidjan". Five days later on April 26 of 1946 the Soviet trained, equipped and backed Kurdish Forces face 600 Iranian troops supported by Cavalry and backed with heavy artillery. Kurdish peshmerga fighters repel the first Iranian attack and declares a victory. On May 3 a cease fire agreement is reached with leaves only occasional clashes between both parties.
May 1946: Kurdish and Azerbaidjani State sign an Oil agreement with the Soviet Union, to be ratified in parliament later.
March 1946: In response to United Nations Security council resolution 2 (in history) (and later 3), the Soviet Union promises to withdraw its troops still lingering in northern Iran and supporting the fledgling Kurdish and Azerbaidjani States. In reality, the withdrawal of Soviet troops is slow and protracted.
June 1946: a second Iranian offensive against the emerging Kurdish State of Mahabad defeats Kurdish Forces. Inside the State tribal support for religious and political leader Qazi Mohammad dwindles, especially when promised Soviet support does not arrive. Meanwhile, the United States and Allies put unrelenting pressure on the Soviet Union to stop supporting revolt in Iran.
June 1946, the British Government cracked down on the Zionist movement in Palestine, arresting many leaders of the Yishuv (I.e. Black Sabbath). Golda Meir (גולדה מאיר) took over as acting head of the Political Department of the Jewish Agency during the incarceration of Moshe Sharett. Thus she became the principal negotiator between the Jews in Palestine and the British Mandatory authorities. After his release, Sharett went to the United States to attend talks on the UN Partition Plan, leaving Meir to head the Political Department until the establishment of the exclusively Jewish "state of Israel" in 1948 (The Israeli Declaration of (Jewish) Independence (in Palestine) on May 14, 1948).
In response to a British crackdown on Jewish terrorist attacks on British and Arabs, Irgun Zvai Leumi (Led by Menachim Begin) mounted a reprisal terrorist offensive in Palestine. Among things, the King David Hotel - the locations of the British Administration in Palestine was bombed on July 22, leaving 91 dead. Later a the British Embassy in Rome was bombed. In Palestine Jewish terrorist groups again attacked Palestinian (Arab) villages and targets across Palestine, according to Irgun's own words and sources, a strategy devised to intimidate Arab (villages) and make them sue for a (long term) peace settlement with Jews in Palestine.
November 1946: Following another Iranian offensive backed with U.S. resources the newly formed "Republic of Mahabad" effectively ceases to exist. In the following 2 months the Iranian army clears all pockets of resistance, retaking all territories. Qazi Mohammad and the Kurdish State leadership are tried in court and subsequently hanged (in 1947). Peshmerga Forces are supposed to hand over their weapons for amnesty, however many Kurdish Arms are smuggled across the mountains to be available for a new Kurdish uprising in spring of 1947.
While the Kurdish State in north Iran crumbles the adjacent "Autonomous Republic of Azerbaidjan" suffers a similar fate. Its leadership ingloriously flees across the border to the neighboring Soviet State of Azerbaidjan (Today: Azerbaidjan).
February 1947: Birth of Mohammad Najibullah also Najibullah Achmadzai (Pashto: ډاکټر نجیب ﷲ احمدزی)(Life: 1947 - 1996), in life President of Afghanistan (In office: 4 May 1986 – 16 April 1992). With Soviet (USSR) support Najibullah was President during the Soviet Occupation and "management" of Afghanistan. This period ended around 1989 with the complete withdrawal of all Soviet troops from Afghanistan. Regardless a continuing civil war there after, Najibullah managed to hang on to power until the year 1992 when all forms of Soviet help were withdrawn forcing the newly established Afghan Defense Force to a grinding halt. He was deposed in April 1992 ending his career.
5 August, 1947: A massive 7.3 on the Richter scale earthquake rips through the remote Pasni Region in south-west Iran (now in Balochistan, Pakistan) causing massive material damage but a mere 500 deaths (estimated).
November 1946 - February 1947: The first of now famous Dead Sea Scrolls (also known as the Qumran Scrolls) are discovered by herdsmen in Wadi Qumran, near the Dead Sea in the so called west-bank (of the Jordan River) area. With additional finds done by archeologists in the following decade and even as late as 2017, the scripts reveal an early version of biblical text, some of which were previously entirely unknown to the world.
Mohammed-I-Hameed, a Native Indian but British Agent for the first time succeeded in completing and mapping a road between northern India and the territories around the Taklamakan Desert which today are part of the Xinjiang-Uyghur Autonomous Region. The mission to send a native Indian to explore the wild lands beyond the India that was already known and controlled by the British Empire, had been conceived of as early as in 1866, when one Captain Montgomerie who worked with the (Grand) Survey of India had noted that natives of the Ladakh Region (in Kashmir) traveled more ore less freely across the high passes to meet up with the main route of the silk road at Kashgar, Yarkand or Hotan.
In the period between June 12 of 1863 and roughly the last week of September in 1863, Mohammed-I-Shameed traveled via Kashmir to the Ladakh Region, from there passing by Camel caravan northwards across the Karakoram mountain range to Yarkand (today a part of Kashgar City Prefecture). He subsequently lived in Yarkand for some 6 months until March of 1864 when authorities had become suspicious and the secret spying expedition had to make its quiet leave. Although Mohammed-I-Hameed died of illness in sight of home, all notes, measurements and reports gathered by him were received by British authorities providing them for the first time with invaluable geographic information, but also with rumors of buried ancient treasures to be found in lost cities out in the Taklamakan Desert.
February 19, 1865 AD: Birth of Sven Hedin in Stockholm, Sweden. Later in life Hedin would become one of the leading silk road explorers and experts of his Era.
June 25, 1865: The CIM, China Inland Mission, a Christian Missionary organization which aims to spread Christianity across the poor inland Provinces of China, is established in Brighton Beach, Sussex, England. Although ultimately the proselytizing efforts in territories along the Silk Road will not form the bulk of the activities of the organization, members of the CIM will make their mark on the history of the Silk Road in China.
In May of 1866 the first party of Christian missionaries sailed for China. A first mission and headquarters was established in Hangzhou, Zhejiang Province in 1866 by John Hudson, one of the front runners of the movement.
1945 AD About half a Century after the Tours of the Great Explorers Sven Hedin and Aurel Stein another scholar, a British diplomat, a Cambridge Man and perhaps explorer the right honorable Professor Joseph Needham reached the trajectory of the Silk Road. Passing from Chongqing in Sichuan through a stop-over at Fengxian in Shaanxi Province and via Huixian in Gansu on to Lanzhou. To traverse the neglected and sometimes nonexistent road to the far west the Needham expedition traveled by army truck and reportedly visited the small peasant village of Shandan (in Zhangye Prefecture) (where New Zealander Rewi Alley was dropped off), Jiuquan and JiaYuguan on the way to the famed Mogao Caves at the town of Dunhuang.
1829 AD: The German Geographer and Explorer Alexander von Humboldt embarks on an expedition on the Silk Road. It is a Russian sponsored mission to chart the Western Sides of the Altai Mountain Range which today separates Xinjiang-Uyghur Autonomous Region of China from the nations of Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan.
Von Humboldt did write an official report for the Russian Government on his findings during the journey to the Chinese Border Regions, however -possibly due to the sensitivity of his Mission- he refused to divulge or write any personal accounts of it.
1834 AD: Chinese Government declares its citizenry now numbers over 400 million, a growth of 60 million in the 22 years since the 1812 year National census.
1908 AD - 1909 AD Russian explorer Colonel Pyotr Kuzmich Kozlov and his expedition travel in the Tarim River Basin, Inner-Mongolia and the Hexi Corridor, discovering valuable scriptures hidden inside a stupa at Kharakoto (Today: Heicheng in the extreme north-west of Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region), the abandoned former Capital of the 13Th Century Tangut Empire (982 AD - 1227 AD). The find constitutes as unique and amazing historic find which will end up restoring the Tangut Kingdom to its rightful place in the history of the Silk Road in China. Since more finds have revealed more of this interesting civilization.
At the Mogao Caves at Dunhuang further Chinese and Tibetan scriptures are "gained". The scrolls and scriptures later provide a unique understanding of Tangut Civilization, language and culture.
1908 AD William Edgar Geil travels along the Great Wall of China from Shanhai Pass in the East to Jiayu Pass and Jiayuguan Fortress in the West. It is the first full length trip along the mysterious Great Wall by a Westerner. Geil 'discovered' the 'Eastern Fork' - where the two layers of the Great Wall in North Shanxi Province are connected, the Loop of the Great Wall of China through Eastern Tibet and many other smaller facts about the Great Wall unknown outside of China. Through Geil's Book and Photographs the truth about the State and Lenght of China's mysterious Great Wall is 'finally revealed'. Not entirely, as later discoveries proved there was even more to the Wall then Geil discovered, the Han Dynasty Great Wall leading from Jiayuguan to Dunhuang and even beyond to Lop Nor.
1910 AD - A Uighur hunter named Ördek makes the First Discovery of the so called Xiaohe Tombs at Lop Nor in south-east Xinjiang of China (P.R.C.). The discovery of the Xiaohe (Little River) a bronze-age burial site, although not made public for another 24 years would open a brandnew chapter in Silk Road history and archeology.
In 1911 a Revolution finally put an end to the ailing Manchu-Chinese Qing Dynasty (1644 AD - 1911 AD), with the Revolutionaries soon declaring the rising of the first (ever) Republic of China. While the Revolution swept the now politically insecure Chinese Provinces, Russian Forces took de facto control over Mongolia. In the combination of events (northern) Mongolia saw its chance and time fit, declaring independence (from China or Chinese claims after the fall of the multinational Qing Dynasty) in the following year.
After its independence in 1912 Mongolia initially reappears as a Buddhist Theocratic state much resembling the befriended brother Nation of Tibet (which had also declared Independence) however officially still recognized as a Russian Protectorate. Regardless its official status as Buddhist Theocratic Kingdom, the period 1911 to 1923 is regarded a turbulent and violent chapter in Mongolian history today popularly but largely incorrectly thrown together under the title of Mongolian Revolution. The Mongolian revolution initially played out as a striving for National independence, mutual cooperation and freedom from outside threats and interference such as from neighboring China. Eventually however through foreign influence it was turned into a flimsy communist coup D'Etat which eventually lead to Russian overlordship, as was planned by its executors.
Hedin's route took him to Lahore, Delhi, Agra, Lucknow, Benares to Calcutta, meeting there with George Nathaniel Curzon, England's then Viceroy to India.
This expedition resulted in 1,149 pages of maps, on which Hedin depicted newly discovered lands. He was the first to describe yardang (landscape) formations in the Lop Desert.
1899 AD: A German expedition under leadership of Rudolf Hoernle returns from Central Asia reporting the finds of Indian Scriptures but of an unknown langauge at the site of abandoned Khotan.
1900 AD: Aurel Stein launches his first expedition in Central Asia during which he travels along what today is identified as the Karakoram Highway. He passes through the Swat Valley and over the Karakoram Range to Tashkorghan (currently in Xinjiang-Uygur Autonomous Region of China (P.R.C.). From there Stein moves eastward to Khotan for two weeks of excavations.
1901: Evangeline (Eva) French meets Mildred Cable while working for the China inland Mission in China. From then on the two would be inseperable in life, among things working together along the Silk Road in Gansu and Xinjiang, and there after co-authoring a book which makes them legendary silk road travelers in modern times.
1903: British Invasion of Tibet. British Forces on what today is widely known as the (Sir)(Francis) Younghusband Expedition invade Tibet from India advancing on Lhasa. After a massacre of a Tibetan Army on passes leading to Lhasa the British Army reaches the city. The purpose of the expedition is to force Tibet to seed disputed border regions to British India, which also occurs. After some time the British retreat back down the mountains and into India but the matter of cross-border relations with the British will continue to play up. Friendly contacts with British Officers in India continue afterwards.
1904: Russia completes construction of the Trans-Siberian Railway between Moscow and Vladivostok after some 12 years of hard work.
1904: Protestant Missionary George Hunter of the China inland Mission opens a Church and Mission in Chinese Turkestan (Xinjiang). The first in the enormous region with an overwhelmingly Muslim population.
1905 AD: Birth of Mohammed Abdullah also known as "The Lion of Kashmir" (Life: 1905 - 1982), who later in life would go on to lead the Kashmiri Independence Movement (1947 - 1982 officially).
1906 AD - 1908 AD: Sven Hedin travels to the source of the Indus River and the source of the Brahmaputra Rivers in eastern Tibet and follows the Sutlej (Satadree) River, and in so doing "discovers" the Trans-Himalayan Mountain Range.
1899 AD Loulan rediscovered by Svedish Explorer Sven Hedin, after being lost to history for a 1000 years. (Further discoveries at Loulan were made later by Hungarian Marc Aurel Stein in 1914 AD).
When Hedin reaches Lop Nor it has recently filled with water after a period of long droughts ended. Hedin navigated the Yarkand, Tarim and Kaidu rivers and found the dry riverbed of the Kum-darja as well as the dried out lake bed of Lop Nur. Near Lop Nur, he discovered the ruins of the 340 by 310 metres (1,120 by 1,020 ft) former walled royal city and later Chinese garrison town of Loulan, containing the brick building of the Chinese military commander, a stupa, and 19 dwellings built of poplar wood. He also found a wooden wheel from a horse-drawn cart (called an arabas) as well as several hundred documents written on wood, paper and silk in the Kharosthi script. These provided information about the history of the beforehand but mythical lost Buddhist Kingdom and city of Loulan, which, among things according to the histories of the famed Han Dynasty historian Sima Qian) had once been located on the shores of Lop Nur but had been abandoned around the year 330 CE because the lake had dried out, depriving the inhabitants of drinking water.
During his travels in 1900 and 1901 Hedin attempted in vain to reach the city of Lhasa, which was forbidden to Europeans. He continued to Leh, in Ladakh district, Kashmir (India). From Leh,
Asia Report - Map Roads & highways in Central Asian Nations
A geographical and topographical overview Map of the Central Asian Nations of (South) Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, and Parts of North Iran, North Afghanistan, North Pakistan, North India (Jammu & Kashmir), and the region of Kashgar (Kashi) in West China's Xinjiang-Uyghur Autonomous Region of
Map includes International Borders, national provinces and regions (where possible), main cities and roads, main lakes and waters, as well as the locations of Historic Sites, wildlife reserves, officially designated ethnic autonomous communities, main mountain peaks with heights and more coming soon !
Browse the Map, click and follow the links to additional information on each site and location. Click on selected highlighted Map sections for a more detailed map of that Region. Explore the connections in central Asia as never before !
1906 / 1907 AD: After entering Chinese Turkestan (Today's Xinjiang) overland from India via the Pamir mountains, Hungarian-British archeologist Marc Aurel Stein found the Library of Documents sealed in a previously sandblown cave at the Mogao Caves outside of Dunhuang in current day Gansu Province. From the Library Cave in which at around the year 1015 AD massive numbers of books and also other antiques had been stored, he managed to secure a multitude of documents. Among the most famous documents collected by Stein as they are known today are the now famous Diamond Sutra, better known as the worlds first printed book dated at or around 868 AD, thereby precluding the Guttenberg Bible by many centuries. The other books were found to contain great historic books of Buddhist art, treaties on Buddhism and the like. Stein takes away 24 cartloads of ancient scriptures, including ancient Star Maps and the now Famous Diamond Sutra, which is a block-printed document.
The entire collection by Stein from the Mogao Caves and send abroad ultimately wound up in the collection of the British Museum in London. In the modern day all documents of what is known as the Stein Collection have been made available online for free for anyone around the world to see and study.
As visitors to the Mogao Caves may find, at Dunhuang in particular but across China Aurel Stein is loathed for what is often seen as cultural vandalism and moreover the theft of priceless cultural heritage.
In 1924 Mongolia officially becomes a protectorate of the Soviet Union (U.S.S.R.) and is formally organized as the Mongolian Peoples Republic. The event liberates the Mongolian Nation from century old infringements, infiltrations and claims to Sovereignty over Mongolia by neighboring China, but it is the beginning of an age of dire political repression. Soon the destruction of the famous Buddhist Monasteries spread along the roads in Mongolia starts. Monks are humiliated, made prisoner-slave and are executed en masse, their Monasteries robbed then burned to the ground.
In the same year, with Soviet style organization imposed within the main political party in China, the Kuomintang, and its army, Russian influence in Chinese affairs is growing. For the time being Nationalists and Communists cooperate in one Government under heavy soviet advisory.
1924: Forces of Ibn Saud take Mecca, the Holy City
When the news of the Xiaohe finds first made it out to a world audience raised considerable interest, especially among archeological specialist. However, the true depth of their meaning would only be revealed overtime.
As the adjacent video vividly illustrates, it eventually turned out that a fairly large and developed ancient Civilization had existed in the Tarim River basin. A Civilization that had existed long before the existence of the magnificent cultures of the earliest Silk Road, as they were recorded by the envoys of the Han Dynasty (206 BC - 220 AD). These had so far been the earliest recorded civilizations in the regions.
What was even more shocking and is a news that still reverberates around the world was that the mummies found encapsulated and preserved within their tombs were apparently not of Asian ethnicity but of a Caucasian origin. Among things some had red or blond type hair and blue or green eyes.
As various researcher teams have since established, the settlement and the associated cemetery belonged to the Gumugou culture, also known as the Qäwrighul culture, which itself was part of a larger civilization which had lived surrounding the Lop Nor lake and along the rivers of the Tarim River Basin (and what is not Taklamakan desert). Another “beauty” found in the region, a mummy known as the “Beauty of Loulan,” also belonged to this culture. Various other stunning finds have been made recently at Loulan, Yingpan, Cherchen and other locations proving that as early as 2000 B.C. (when early Greek Civilization developed) a European type of peoples had been arriving from the far West (Iran, Iraq, the Black Sea and Turkey) traveling through Central Asia to the large Tarim River Basin fed by glacial rivers. There, they encountered Asian peoples with whom they
YouTube Video: PFS NOVA The Mysterious Indo-European Mummies of China (Part 1), describing the pre-Silk Road Aryan mummies.
intermarried and eventually build a Civilization with. As if all of this was not shocking enough, these peoples knew a primitive art of bronze working which is an art that was previously thought to have been developed in China independently from other parts of the ancient world. As historians now hold it, it is quite possible, if not increasingly likely that the migrations that occurred on the Eurasian continent in the millennia before the birth of Christ and the advent of the Silk Road have carried the ancient knowledge of bronze working into China at that time. One of the routes through which this knowledge must have traveled is the Tarim River Basin, which sort of establishes a silk road of knowledge in existence long before the opening of the historic Silk Road as dated by the Han Dynasty (206 BC - 221 AD) scribes to the year 138 BC.
1929: Arab-Jewish rioting in Palestine claimed at least 200 lives with many more casualties. It was the beginning of a long period of growing emnity which would eventually lead to the Arab Revolt in Palestine and subsequently to the (first) Arab-Jewish civil war in Palestine (1936 - 1939).
1929: Birth of Yassir Arafat, in life co-founder and leader of the P.L.O., Palestinian Liberation Organization in 1956 (Al-Fatah) in Cairo, Egypt.
1929: British archeologist Leonard Woolley published his book "Ur of the Chaldees" on Sumerian Civilization finds at Ur in Iraq.
1942: George Hogg, a British born journalist for the Manchester Daily, helps Rewi Alley - a New Zealander set up a school in Shuangshipu Town (Today: Fengxian, Fengxian County, Baoji City Prefecture, Shaanxi Province). It is called the Bailie School which will be the home for some 60 orphaned children. It is the beginning of a memorable adventure. In the next year George Hogg is made headmaster of the school, becoming the center of the Universe for the 60 odd orphans struggling for life in a very dark and turbulent period in Chinese history.
In 1943 - Edmond O. Clubb, the American Consul in Tihwa (Urumqi) at the time, sent a message to Washington D.C. Making a mention of local rumors which say that the Russians, who have invaded the (Kazakh Populated) northernmost region of Xinjiang, have found uranium and are making preparations for mining uranium ore.
1943: Menachim Begin became leader of Irgun (Zvai Leumi), the Jewish Zionist Nationalist Armed organization in Palestine. Begin would later become one of the lead Politicans and eventually President of Israel.
1944: Death of Silk Road explorer (by then Sir) Marcus Aurel Stein.
Late in 1944: Chinese Nationalist Forces (Kuomintang) search the Bailie School in Fengxian for the needed fresh recruits to help fight the Japanese invaders in what is now the "War of Resistance against Japanese Agression". In order to escape the forced recruiting the Chinese armies have been notorious for, headmaster George Hogg decides to relocate the Bailie School to a location out of reach of both the Kuomintang and the Japanese Forces. The destination ultimately chosen for the relocation will be Shandan, a remote town situated over 1100 kilometers (700 miles) from Shuangshipu (Fengxian) in the Hexi Corridor of Gansu Province along the ancient Silk Road out of Xian and Lanzhou.
In November of 1944, at the onset of winter, the first group of boys sets out on a journey across frozen high passes and through deserts in order to reach their destination. In January of 1945 a second group of the remaining 27 boys sets out on this trail as well.
After some 450 miles and a month of arduous travels, the first group reached Lanzhou and the Yellow River, where with credit arranged for by Rewi Alley, Hogg was able to rent 6 venerable diesel trucks which would transport everyone of the silk road and the Hexi Corridor to Shandan in Zhangye (City) Prefecture. The Bailie School was re-established in an abandoned old Temple in Shandan.
22 March, 1945: Arab League is founded by 22 Nations in Cairo, Capital of Egypt. It is an organization which declares a goal of safeguarding the Sovreignty of member nations, extending cooperation and working together to advance the interest of Arab Nations. Significantly, its first President was the Palestinian leader Haj Amin Al Husseini, better known as the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem (notorious for his cooperation with German Nazis in world war 2).
In July 1945, George Hogg stubs his toe while playing sports with his pupils. The toe is infected with tetanus. While two boys are sent by motorcycle to Lanzhou in a desperate rescue mission to retrieve the much needed antibiotics, George Hogg dies on July 22nd. He is buried a short ways outside of the small town of Shandan with a small headstone honoring his sacrifice and contribution.
July 26, 1944: Shah Reza Pahlavi, the former Iranian General turned founder of a new Monarchy in Iran dies in exile in Durban Johannesburgh, South Africa while his son retains the throne in Iran.
6 November 1944: The British administrator (Governor) of the British post-war mandate territory of Palestine is assassinated by Jewish terrorist of the LEHI Organization (Stern Gang).
November 1945 - September 1946: The "Iran Crisis".
Following the withdrawal of British and Commonwealth troops from Iran in September 1945, Soviet Troops linger in northern Iran. Having created, among things the Azerbaidjani Democratic Party (ADP), Soviet agents instigate insurrection in Azerbaidjani regions in northern Iran. The ADP spreads its influence throughout all of Azerbaidjani northern Iran and stages and subsequently dissolves the openly communist and modernist Tudeh Pary ("Party of the Masses") in the first week of September. Later in the same month, at the first ADP Party congress, the party establishes an armed militia which, with soviet arms, help and active support claim control of all villages and towns.
By mid-November when sufficient control is established the ADP declares the establishment of the "Independent" "Autonomous Republic of Azerbaidjan" in northern Iran.
In December of 1945, right after the establishment of the "Autonomous Republic of Azerbaidjan" in mountainous north Iran, the independent Kurdish State of Mahabad was established. The obligatory new religious leader of the newly emerging Soviet Russian backed State of the "Republic of Mahabad" is named Qazi Mohammad.
Tudeh ("Party of the Masses" ; Persian: حزب تودۀ ایران), the Iranian Communist Party, creates a mass movement for change in Iran while a Soviet backed insurrection is staged in north Iran. CIA agents and operatives launch a counter-propaganda offensive in Iran critizing inspiration and guidance taken from the Soviet Union, as well as the anti-Islamic character of Tudeh political ideas. The influence of the Tudeh Party continues in Iran and will be crucial in Iranian Politics in the next decade.
June 4 to 7, 1947 - "Peitashan Incident". Chinese forces and local tribal militia in north-west Xinjiang's lower or little Altai Mountains do battle with troops from the Republic of Mongolia in the disputed border zone between current day Altai Prefecture of Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region and the Province of Khovd in the Republic of Mongolia. At the time it seems as if Russia, by use of its proxy the Peoples Republic of Mongolia, is steering towards a full takeover of all of Xinjiang (a territory fully claimed by the Peoples Republic of China based (mistakenly) on the assumption that the current Chinese Nation can lay claim to all the territory claimed by the Manchu invaders of China during their further conquest dubbed in China as "The Qing Dynasty (1644 AD - 1911 AD)". However, the Qing were Manchu and not Chinese thus it cannot have been a Chinese Dynasty (in proper)).
August 15, 1947: Formerly British ruled India is split between predemoninantly Muslim Pakistan (with current day Bangladesh as eastern Pakistani Province) and the majority Hindu and other State of India, creating the Islamic Republic of Pakistan and Democratic India. The political split causes a mass exodus of Muslims to Pakistan and others
Map of the current day Republic of Mongolia showing the western border a line dviding the minor Altai Mountains (Chowd Altai) bteween Kazakh Territory (Altai Prefecture) and Mongolian Territory (Khovd Aimag). In this arrangement the Kazakh held on to pasturelands on the south-west slopes of the Mountains, whereas the northern- and eastern slopes fell under control of Mongolia and local Mongolian nomadic people. Naturally, disregarding politics the regions have always been interconnected.
Chinese controlled part of Xinjiang into the East Turkestan Republic and fight their way to the region of Koktogai which is also their native tribal pastureland. Not many historic details are known about this remote event, however ultimately the Kazakh's re-invading their own homeland were repelled, it is said with the help if Russian Forces, and ultimately ended up retreating into Chinese held territory more to the south.
Rumor has it that at the time the Koktogai Region had been the location of the first and only Russian Uranium mine, a crucial part of the ongoing Russian efforts to steal the American Atomic Bomb design, find uranium and produce nuclear weapons itself (At the time uranium was the only substance know to be usable as the nuclear fuel driving the atomic explosion). Based on the scarce information available it appears that the invading group of Kazakh's had received weapons from the Chinese Nationalist Army just prior to November 4 and that earlier in June of 1947 the Kazakh's had taken weapons from their Mongolian enemies at a place known as Peitaishan during the "Peitaishan Incident" (The BeiDa Shan are a mountain range also known as the smaller Altai Mountains (Chowd Altai) which extends in a south-eastern directions from the Altai Range and so forms the border between today's "Altai Kazakh Prefecture" of Xinjiang and Khovd Aimag (Province) in the far west of the Republic of Mongolia. This border had been disputed in the years prior to the "Koktogai Incident" and was fixed by various battles of the time. One such battle had included the Kazakh Tribe from Koktogai.
November 1947 AD - & U.S. Army Officers are flown out to the U.S. Consulate and "listening post" at Urumqi. On the long haul flight, they stop off at several points along the way in order to inspect sites designated by Douglas MacKiernan as possible spots for the location of (Ad Hoc) American strategic bomber bases to be used in case of war with the Soviet Union. Most notably, one of the sites included a
Xinjiang-Uygur Autonomous Region Satellite Map 1A
A Satellite Image overview Map of Xinjiang-Uygur Autonomous Region entire and parts of neighboring Nations of India, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan, The Tuva-, Khakassia- and Buryatia Republic of the Russian Federation, The Republic of Mongolia, as well as Chinese Provinces and Territories of Gansu Province, Qinghai Province and Tibet Autonomous Region.
This Map Includes Cities and Towns (shown by size), the Irtush River Valley, the Dzungarian Basin of Xinjiang AR, the Taklamakan Desert in South-Central Xinjiang AR, a variety of border passes in the Karakoram Mountain Range and the Tian Shan Mt. Range, plus main waterways, rivers and lakes of this large region.
+ Nuclear Test Site
Tarim River Basin
(& Taklamakan Desert)
Malan Nuclear Test Site
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large flat swath of dry desert land situated immediately north of Jiayuguan and Jiuquan in Gansu Province, two closely related rural towns better known for their position at the very western end of the Ming Dynasty Era Great Wall of China. Because the fortunes of the American alliance with the Kuomindang Government of Jiang Jieshi (Chiang Kai Chek) in the (2nd) Chinese Civil War turned sour and events were overturned by the victory of the Chinese Communist Party leading to the establishment of the Peoples Republic of China (Formally, Oct. 1st, 1949) no U.S. Bomber base ever emerged in the desert near the end of the Great Wall. However, although the American plan for a bomber base to reach Central Asia and the Russian atomic sites in Kazakhstan (Semipalatinsk ; Semey) "nearby" was thwarted, someone in the Chinese Administration had been informed and made due notice. Within 10 years of the American stop over and inspection of the site, the location at Jiayuguan / Jiuquan was secretly designated as a military base established for serving a role in the Chinese Atomic program and associated missile program). As was many years later, overtime the secret base served supporting functions for upcoming nuclear tests in the western deserts of China (P.R.C.). Gaining a military airfield along the way at some time during the 1950's) it was further developed into China's first (nuclear) Ballistic Missile Testing Range which became designated with the codename: DongFeng 1.
On 20 May 1948, Folke Bernadotte was appointed "United Nations Mediator in Palestine", in accordance with UN-resolution 186 of 14 May 1948. It was the first official mediation in the UN's history.
January 1, 1949: Fighting ends in the undeclared Pakistan-India War in Kashmir through a United Nations mediated ceasefire agreement. The territory of Kashmir albeit still disputed is split into a Pakistani Controlled part and an Indian Controlled part, the line of split runs along the factual (military) lines of control held by the armies of both opposing the Nations. It is the start of long period of military occupations, cross border wars and insurrections of the local peoples.
15 May 1948 – 10 March 1949: The first Arab-Israeli War (also dubbed 1948 Arab–Israeli War) breaks out in western Asia after a unilateral declaration of the founding of the State of Israel by Jewish colonists and settlers in Palestine sparks all out civil war in Palestine. With the essentially illegal act of the unilateral founding of a Jewish State occupying large parts of Palestine while United Nations negotiations (the first ever in world history) are still ongoing, Arab States of the Region feel themselves forced into war with the newborn but illegal state of Israel. A coalition of Arab States including Egypt, Syria, and the Kingdom of Jordan, supported by expeditionary forces from the State of Iraq invade Palestine in order to put a stop to the emergence of the Jewish State of Israel.
While being cornered from all sides the newly created illegal State of Israel receives massive help from the United States of America from where large shipments of military equipment, ammunition and airplanes and financial aid are received. Jewish volunteers join the fight from all over the world particularly from the United States.
17 September, 1948: United Nations chief Palestine peace mediator, the Swedish Diplomat Folke Bernadotte, in World War 2 saviour of some 31 thousand Jews from German Concentration Camps, is murdered in Jerusalem by the Jewish Terrorist Stern Gang (LEHI group), eventhough this group had officially been disbanded and banned as part of the 29 May 1948 unilateral declaraton of the formation of the State of Israel in occupied Palestine. Ralph Bunche, previously the deputy negotiator, succeeds him as Chief Negotiator.
After the assassination, the new Israeli government declared Lehi a terrorist organization, arresting and convicting some 200 members as a token gesture to placate the United Nations. Meanwhile LEHI terrorist Chief of operations Menachim Begin (Life: Brest, Russian Empire 15 August 1913 - 9 March 1992 Tel Aviv, Israel) enters democratic politics later to become the 6th Prime Minister of Israel (21 June, 1977 - 10 October 1983) and even sharing a Nobel Preace Prize with Egyptian President Anwar Sadat (1979) after signing a peace treaty with that State.
6 October, 1948 AD: The 1948 Ashgabat Earthquake (Turkmen: 1948 Ашгабат ыер титремеси; 1948 Aşgabat yer titremesi; Russian: Ашхабадское землетрясение 1948 года; Ashkhabadskoye zemletryasenie 1948 goda) strikes 25 kilometers south-west of Ashgabat in the Turkmen Soviet Republic (Turkmenistan). The 7.3 magnitude earthquake event rips open the ground, heavily damages concrete buildings, levels historic adobe homes and derails freight trains. Through heavy censorship by the Uzbek Government the true extend of the damage and loss of live remains unknown to most of the Soviet Union (U.S.S.R.), let alone the outside world. A considerable percentage of the entire Uzbek population, an estimated 10 to 110 thousand people loose their lives.
15 October 1948 – 10 March 1949 In the so called October battles, Israel launched a series of military operations to drive out the Arab armies and secure the northern and southern borders of Israel.
November 1948 - After seeing off his newly wed (and 3rd) wife in Shanghai, around November 10 Joseph S. MacKiernan, a CIA spy in undercover function embarks on his last drive across China, taking one month to reaching his first goal, the City of Tihwa, today better known as Urumqi. During World War 2, the city had been MacKiernan's station. He reached Tihwa (Urumqi) on December 10 of 1948 AD ostensibly bringing with him a truck load of (secretive) equipment. The equipment likely included Geiger tellers and other sensors intended to be used in order to detect and locate any (Russian) atomic test in Central Asia.
Within half a year Douglas MacKiernan would become the first CIA Agent to be killed in the line of duty.
December 1948: the UN General Assembly passed Resolution 194. It called to establish a UN Conciliation Commission to facilitate peace between Israel and Arab states. However, many of the resolution's articles were not fulfilled, since these were opposed by Israel, rejected by the Arab states, or were overshadowed by war as the 1948 conflict continued.
1949: After 60 years of neglect, archeological excavations resume at the ancient ruined site of Nimrud near Mosul (Historical Niniveh) in northern Iraq. Excavations are led by Sir Max Edgar Lucien Mallowan, Britian's pre-eminent scholar and expert in the field of ancient Middle Eastern History. Numerous archeological missions have followed through the decades until the total destruction of the site by ISIL in March of 2015.
In 1949, Israel signed separate armistices with Egypt on 24 February, Lebanon on 23 March, Jordan on 3 April, and Syria on 20 July ending the First Arab-Israeli War (or in fact freezing it in place for about a decade while Israel was built). The Armistice Demarcation Lines, as set by the agreements, saw the territory under Israeli control encompassing approximately three-quarters of the prior British administered Mandate as it stood after Transjordan's independence in 1946 becoming the Hashimite Kingdom of Jordan.
As a result of humiliating defeats suffered by the Arab Nations of Egypt, Syria, Jordan and Iraq, Israel controlled territories of about one-third more than was allocated to the Jewish State under the United Nations partition proposal and subsequent resolutions. After the armistices, Israel with a Jewish population of just over 600 thousand, had control over 78% of the territory comprising former Mandatory Palestine or some 8,000 square miles (21,000 km2), including the entire Galilee and Jezreel Valley in the north, whole Negev Desert in south, West Jerusalem and the coastal plain in the center.
The armistice lines were known afterwards as the "Green Line". The Gaza Strip and the West Bank (including East Jerusalem) were occupied by Egypt and Jordan respectively. The United Nations Truce Supervision Organization and Mixed Armistice Commissions were set up to monitor ceasefires, supervise the armistice agreements, to prevent isolated incidents from escalating, and assist other UN peacekeeping operations in the region.
1949: Women win the right to Vote in Syria and later that year in the new Peoples Republic of China, established on October 1, 1949 with the National Capital at Beijing.
1949 onwards: Archeologist began to uncover fossilized remains and artifacts of Homo Erectus dated between 80 thousand B.C. and 500 thousand B.C. in many locations in Northern China.
August 29, 1949, the Soviet Union exploded its first atomic bomb. The nuclear test dubbed Joe-1 by western intelligence (after Joseph "Uncle Joe" Stalin) was conducted near the city of Semipalatinsk (Today: Semey) on the steppes of the then Soviet Republic of Kazakhstan and had roughly the same yield as the A-Bomb that destroyed Nagasaki in August of 1945, around 21 kilotons of TNT (equivalent). The test came as a considerable shock to U.S. Government circles but not to its intelligence circles in Central Asia, especially at Tihwa.
A geographic overview Map of Tibet, the Tibetan Plateaux and relevant adjoining regions and territories. Map includes a large part of Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region (PRC), Kashmir, North-West Pakistan, Northern India, Nepal, Bhutan, Bangladesh and the culturally associated region of Myanmar (Burma). A small part of Yunnan Province of China is also depicted.
This Map clearly defines disputed borders and territories, Nations (except for Tibet), Provinces and Regions, as well as geographical features such as main mountain ranges, main rivers & lakes of the region, basins and plains, plus the locations and names of main cities, towns, monuments and landmarks.
Browse the Map and follow the Links where available to access more maps, information and photos on each location and landmark.
A year after Mohammed-I-Hammed completed his mission, in 1866, the first westerner managed to make his way across the Indian Himalayas from Leh in Ladakh via a previously unidentified pass which led through the Aksai Chin Region northward to Hotan along the silk road in the Taklamakan Desert. Helped by an unexpected invitation from the local Khan Badsha to stay for a few days (later Sir) William Johnson, the man who one earlier had helped investigate the cause of death of Mohammed-I-Shameed, traveled to Hotan where he mainly gathered political and military information. During his brief stay Johnson was however able to further confirm the rumor of the existence of ancient buried cities in the sands. As he reported, ancient tea bricks, reportedly found out in the desert, were regularly on sale at the local bazaar(s) where they were outright popular especially since the ongoing rebellions and battles in the Xinjiang Region had disrupted the usual supply lines running via Mongolia and what was by then Russian held territories.
With this feat and new by-road of the Silk Road, a shortcut between Hotan and India bypassing the Karakoram Range had been re-discovered (for the International Western world, of course locals knew of its existence).
In 1868, the Buchara Emirate lost a war with Imperial Russia, which had colonial aspirations in the region. Russia annexed much of the emirate's territory, including the important city of Samarkand (in current day Uzbekistan).
In the aftermath, in 1869, the Samarkand Kufic Kuran (Uthman Quran, Samarkand codex, Samarkand manuscript and Tashkent Quran), an 8th or 9th century religious document taken to be the oldest surviving Kuran text in the world, was taken from Khoja Ahrar Mosque of Samarkand when the Russian general Abramov bought it from the Mullahs of that Mosque and gave it to Konstantin von Kaufman, Governor-General of Turkestan, who subsequently sent the important historic document (book) to the designated Russian Imperial Institute for study of foreign and antique documents, texts and artifacts, which was the Imperial Library in Saint Petersburg (now the Russian National Library. Once on Saint Petersburg the document attracted the attention of Orientalists and eventually a facsimile edition was published in Saint Petersburg in 1905. The 50 copies soon became rarities. The first thorough description and dating of the manuscript was undertaken by the Russian Orientalist Shebunin in 1891.
1869: Manchu Qing Military Forces begin a long but successful campaign of reconquest of territories lost in the Dzungar Islamic Rebellion led by Yakub Beg. The Rebellion has spread from western Xinjiang along the pathways of the silk road into the Hexi Corridor of Gansu Province and the rebellious forces demand succession (independence and regional autonomy). A military response is the traditional answer.
While the military campaign evolves, official Government military arsenals are established in the cities of Xian and Fuzhou (the former end or start point of the Silk Road in China, the latter location a major port of the maritime silk road, location of the Naval Shipyard as well as the Naval Academy).
1870 AD: Russian military forces invade and take control of large parts of the Valley if the Ili River in the north and central west of Chinese Turkestan (aka Xinjiang). The occupation would hold until a Chinese-Russian land and money swap arrangement in 1881. Meanwhile, the Ili River Valley would serve as a Russian intelligence base and stop over for Russian Expeditions in the nearby mountainous regions and the larger Chinese Turkestan Regions.
1870 AD: In the wake of fresh Russian military conquests in Central Asia, Russian explorer Nikola Prejalevski made the first of his total of four major trips through Central Asia (1870 AD - 1885 AD). One of his greater achievements was the mapping of the Lop Nor Desert in the eastern expanses of the Taklamakan Desert in Xinjiang or Chinese Turkestan.
1871: The Fifth Great Buddhist Council (of the world) meets in Mandalay (royal Capital of Burma (Today: Myanmar). The council introduced a new authorized text of the Buddhist Canon, the Tipitaka.
1872 AD: Manchu Forces under command of General Zuo-Zong Tang besieged the famous silk road town of Suzhou (Jiuquan) situated just within the Great Wall of China (in current day Gansu Province). With the city taken from rebellious Dzungars nominally led by Yakub Beg (in west Xinjiang), the Manchu Armies are ready to start their advance westward towards Xinjiang, taking back territory along the way.
1872/73 AD: Buchara Khanate (Persian: خانات بخارا ; Uzbek: Buxoro Xonligi), since 1775 the Buchara Emirate becomes a Russian Protectorate and thus a part of the expanding Russian Empire in East-Asia. It will last as an administrative entity until the year 1920 but is soon factually surrounded by the newly created Russian Protectorate (Province) of Russian Turkestan (Русский Туркестан) which included current day Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan and parts of Kazakhstan.
1873: After several earlier failed attempts, Russian armed forces take the city of Khiva former capital of Khwarezmia and the Khanate of Khiva (Uzbek: Xiva
Xinjiang-Uygur AR - Kasghar - Map Path Karakoram Highway
A Schematic overview Map of the Entire Length of the Karakoram Highway (KKH), known as the highest paved road in the World. Map Area depicted: Karakoram Highway in the Region between Kashgar in China and Islamabad and Peshawar in Pakistan.
Clearly depicted is the Path of the Karakoram Road through Taxkurgan Tajik Autonomous County, Khunjerab Pass, Kunjerab River Valley, Bara Kun Lake, Hunza River Valley, Indus Valley, Khagan River Valley to its destination at Islamabad.
Main Items of interest - Main Mountain Peaks of the Area with Height, small towns, Tourist and Historic Locations and Landmarks, Main Rivers, current WAR ZONE of the Swat Valley and other dangers on this road, the North West Frontier Province of Pakistan, Ethnic Regions and language Area's, Kashmir, FATA Federally administered Tribal Area's on the Pakistan-Aghanistan Border and more.
Xinjiang Autonomous Region Geographic Map 1A
A Geographic overview Map of the entire Xinjiang-Uygur Autonomous Region and large parts of neighboring Nations of India, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan, The Republic of Mongolia, as well as bordering Chinese Provinces and Territories of Inner-Mongolia AR, Gansu Province, Qinghai Province and Tibet Autonomous Region. This Map Includes Cities and Towns (shown by size), Main Monuments & landmarks of Xinjiang AR, the Taklamakan Desert in South-Central Xinjiang AR, major highways, provincial railroads, a variety of border passes in the Karakoram Mountain Range and the Tian Shan Mt. Range, plus main mountains, waterways, rivers and lakes of this large region.
1890's/ 1900 AD : At the highpoint of the Colonial Era, European Silk Road explorers Sven Hedin and later Sir Marcus Aurel Stein explore the Silk Road paths of Central Asia. Hedin survives the sands of the Taklamakan Desert to refind the Lost Civilization of Khotan. In 1900 AD Stein makes excavations of the Khotan Site.
1889-90: Captain Hamilton Bower and Expedition explore the Northern Rim of the Taklamakan Desert, ostensibly on a mission pursuing the murderer of Andrew Dalgleish, a Scottish born trader who had been murdered in the previous year (1888) while making his way through the notorious passes between Leh in Ladakh (today Kashmir, India) and Yarkand in Xinjiang but also on a secret mission under orders of the British Government of India.
During their exploits the expedition visited Kucha (today a County in the east of Aksu City Prefecture. The expedition brings back scriptures written on birch bark in an Indian Language. Today the document is famous as the Bower Manuscript which after deciphering revealed to be an originally Tocharian text written in the Sanskrit language but making use of the Brahmi Alphabet. The document confirmed earlier rumors of existence of Lost Buddhist Kingdoms in the great East Turkestan (Chinese Turkestan) Regions, which previously had been thought to be exclusively Islamic in origins.
Although wild rumors had been circulating in prior decades, the recovery of this valued and still rather unique documents is said to have started in earnest the race for exploration and archeological discovery in Central Asia (and along the Silk Road) which flourished and topped in the early 20th century.
1892 AD: A French expedition under leadership of Dutreuil de Rhins explores the southern rim of the Taklamakan Desert and later Tibet, where the expedition leader is murdered.
1893-94: Archeologist Ernest Chantre opened the first few trial trenches at the village then called Boğazköy, today better known as Ḫattuša, the ruined and abandoned Capital of the Bronze Age Hittite Empire (Estimated c. 1600 BC–c. 1178 BC), which encompassed large parts of current day Egypt, the Levant, Syria, Mesopotamia (Iraq), Turkey (Asia Minor) as well as southern Greece. It is the first of many such archeological missions.
1893 AD - 1897: Later world renowned Swedish Explorer and geographer Sven Hedin makes
The first of his great journeys and explorations into Central Asia.
1994/1995 He makes several attempts to climb the famous Muztagh Ata Peak in the (Eastern) Pamir Mountain Range, before heading to Kashgar to prepare his expedition into the Taklamakan Desert.
In January 1896, after a stopover in Kashgar, Hedin visited the 1,500-year-old abandoned cities of Dandan Oilik and Kara Dung, which are located northeast of Khotan in the Taklamakan Desert. Although his first attempted expedition through the sands of the Taklamakan Desert between the Yurunkash and Hotan Rivers nearly left him dead in the Desert, regardless afterwards, the expeditions continued.
At the beginning of March 1896, Hedin discovered Lake Bosten, one of the largest inland bodies of water in Central Asia. He reported that this lake is supplied by a single mighty feeder stream, the Kaidu River. He mapped Lake Kara-Koshun and returned on 27 May to Khotan. On 29 June, he started out from there with his caravan across northern Tibet and China to Beijing, where he arrived on 2 March 1897. He returned to Stockholm via Mongolia and Russia.
At the end of his journey Hedin is the first to have explored the western rim of the Taklamakan Desert, taking away to foreign countries hundreds of historic objects recovered from ruined and lost Oasis towns in the Taklamakan Desert. His finds further ignite the western strife for recovery of ancient archeological treasures from the Silk Road in Central Asia.
1895: Eva (Evangelina) French arrives in China to work with the China Inland Mission (CIM). In the coming two decades she will explore along the Silk Road in Gansu Province and the current day Xinjiang-Uyghur Autonomous Region, spreading the gospel and co-authoring a book about these uncommon adventures which today is best known under the title "The Gobi Desert - the adventures of three women traveling across the Gobi Desert in the 1920's".
1898: A German team of archeologists for the first time starts exploration of the historic Ruins of Aššur (Akkadian; Syriac: ܐܫܘܪ 'Āshūr; Persian: آشور: Āshūr; Hebrew: אַשּׁוּר Aššûr, Arabic: اشور: Āshūr ; Kurdish: Asûr), also known as Ashur and Qal'at Sherqat, in ancient history the Capital of the Old Assyrian Empire (2025–1750 BC), the Middle Assyrian Empire (1365–1050 BC), and for a time, the Neo-Assyrian Empire (911–608 BC), situated on the banks of the Tigris River in Saladin Governate of Iraq. In the year 1900 A.D. the first archeological excavations led by Friedrich Delitzsch start.
1898 to 1900 AD: Bliss and Macalister for the first time in history undertake archeological surveys and excavations at Mareshra, an ancient now ruined historic site of the Tribe of Judah (שבט יְהוּדָה), one of the supposed 12 historical tribes of the confederate Jewish state of Judah (שבטי ישראל) in the 2nd millenium B.C. They uncover a planned and fortified Hellenistic city encircled by a town wall with towers. Two Hellenistic and one Israelite stratum were identified by them on the mound. Many of the ancient city's olive presses, columbaria and water cisterns can still be seen.
November 1, 1898: Emperor Wilhelm II of Germany passes through the by then already famous town of Baalbek in Lebanon on his way to the holy city of Jerusalem. Noting the dilapidated conditions of the Baalbek roman ruins site and the presence of a village, there - when able to do so- he takes swift action. Within a month a first German archeological team arrives at the location to start archeological excavations which, with intervals, will last into the year 1904. Although no shocking or spectacular finds are made, the archeological team is certain to be able to date the origins of the Baalbek site as previous to the construction of Roman Temples there.
1870 - 1873 Sir Douglas Forsyth, a British Civil Servant in the Punjab Region and an authority on Central Asia led a British Mission to Yarkand with the aim of befriending the local Tajik Warlord Yaqub Beg (محمد یعقوب بیگ), who at the time had control of large parts of the current day Xinjiang-Uyghur Autonomous Region. The mission was a failure as Yaqub Beg was away from his Capital. In 1873 a fresh and larger expedition was sent from India to Yarkand and Kashgar, once more with aim of contacting and befriending the local Warlord Yaqub Beg. On his second mission Sir Douglas Forsyth was much more succesful and certain agreements were reached between the Tajik, Uighur and Kyrgyz in Xinjiang and the British on countering any possible Russian military expansion in the Xinjiang Area.
During the mission the British participants also learned more about the supposed ruined and lost cities that were to be found in the Taklamakan Desert. While the British were busy with their politics in Yarkand, opportunity was found to send out two local servants eastward to Hotan with the mission to find out anything they could about the reported lost and ruined silk road cities to be found near Hotan and Yurumkash. For the first time objects recovered from such sites are brought back. Among these are two figurines recovered from lost ruins near Keriya (Mugala), one a 10th century Buddha figure, the other a statue of the Monkey-God (Hunooman). Other objects recovered elsewhere included gold rings, nose rings and coins of Greek and later Kingdoms founded along the Silk Road in the 3rd century BC and afterwards (To be more exact: one iron coin of Hermeus the last Greek King of Bactria and coins of Constans II, King Pognatus, Justinus and Antimachus and Theodosius of the Greco-Bactrian Kingdom (250 BC-125 BC)).
1812 AD: A National census in China indicates a population of 340 million.
22 August, 1812: Swiss traveler Johann Ludwig (Burckhardt) (Life: 24 November 1784 - 15 October 1817) "discovers" and is the first European who describes the ancient Nabatean city of Petra (in Trans-Jordania, today the Kingdom of Jordan), one of the wonder of the western Silk Road. It is the beginning of a long foreign romance with this particular silk road site.
18 July 1814: Johann Ludwig, Swiss Traveler extra-ordinaire, arrives Jeddah in Arabia (today: Saudi Arabia), and after proving himself of his Muslim credentials is allowed to travel on to the Holy City of Mecca, where among things he engaged in the rituals of the (yearly) Hajj. During his stay of several months in Mecca, an unheard of thing for a European, Ludwig made detailed obersvations and some surveys of the holy City, leaving details for later travelers in his extensive journals.
1820 AD: Death of the Jiajing Emperor of the Manchu Qing Dynasty. The reign of Jiajing the fifth Manchu Qing Emperor (of China) was a weak one, with the onset of Opium Trade, gross government corruption and inability leading to rural insurrections. The end of the Jiajing Reign (1776 AD - 1820) marks the beginning of slow and final decline of the Manchu Qing Dynasty (1644 AD - 1911 AD).
1824: Having been on explorations since 1920, spending some two years in Ladakh, William Moorcroft and his large party continue their journey northward towards Central Asia. Traveling through Jalalabad (Today: Pakistan) and Kabul, British explorer William Moorcroft becomes the first European to see Bamiyan and the later world famous Buddhist Statues at Bamiyan (Today: Bamiyan, Haziristan, central Afghanistan).
Afterwards they reach the upper Oxus River and travel on to reach Buchara (Uzbekistan) on February 25, 1825.
1825 AD: Muslim rebels in western parts of Chinese Turkestan (Xinjiang) led by Jehangir, declared themselves independent of the overlordship of the Manchu Qing Dynasty (Empire). Between 1825 and 1828 the rebels take control of Yarkand and Kashgar and subsequently large parts of the Tarim River Basin (in the south of Chinese Turkestan). In 1828 Manchu Forces strike back breaking the rebellion in a bloody military campaign. Victory is celebrated at the Forbidden City in Beijing in 1828.
China Report - Map of the Great Wall during the Ming Dynasty
Satellite image of China and North-East Asia, with a super-imposed schematic Map of the location and Path of the Great Wall as constructed during the Reign of the Ming Dynasty. Included for reference are City names, geographical features of landscape, Names and locations of Passes on the Great Wall of China.
of China. After 8 months of traveling, most of it on foot, they reach the historic silk road town of Zhangye along the Great Wall of China in Gansu. Eventually they make their way to the famous town of Suzhou (Jiuquan), just within the gates of the Great Wall of China of the Ming Dynasty, where they rent housing and a building to se as church. Jiuquan is their base until 1936, although many months will be spent traveling. In the following years they will follow the foot trails of the ancient silk road, which at the time is still operating but on a more localized level. In their multiple journeys they learn the ins and outs of the management and goings on of camel caravans, the various ethnic peoples of the silk road Oasis, and leave invaluable eye-withess accounts of the smallest and seemingly insignificant locations along the entire Silk Road in Gansu Province and large parts of what today is the Xinjiang-Uyghur Autonomous Region. Between 1923 and 1926, the three missionary women traveled extensively in the Hexi Corridor of Gansu Province eventually extending their reach and religious work to Tibetan Tribes and villages living in what today is part of Qinghai Province of the Peoples Republic of China.
After having taken two years leave between 1926 and 1928, the second journey starting in 1928, brought the three women westward into Xinjiang, roaming the territory from the south to north and on their way, being detained or held hostage by a notorious local Hui Chinese Warlord, Ma Zhongying (Life: 1910 - ?/ Not heard of after 1936 and missing), in order to tend to his wounds. A third journey starting in 1932 led northward into territories of Inner Mongolia where they reached as far north as Edzin Gol Lake, the terminal lake of the Hei (Edzin or Black) River.
In 1936 the take their journey home-bound on the Trans-Siberian Railway. In the aftermath, after their retirement home to England, Mildred Cable and Francesca French co-author the book; "The Gobi Desert" with the subtitle "The adventures of three women traveling across the Gobi Desert in the 1920s". It leaves a completely unique account of the lands and regions traveled, not available from other more renowned authors (nearly all of them Male).
June, 1923: Mildred Cable, Evangelina and Francesca French, "the trio" who work in (S)Huozhou in Shanxi Province as Missionaries for the Protestant China Inland Mission, embark on a new adventure, aiming to spread the faith in the far west
October 1920 AD - With all Russian Forces occupied in the aftermath of the Russian Revolution, Chinese Forces reoccupy outer Mongolia (which today is referred to as Inner Mongolia)(Due to a peculiar perhaps naieve acceptance of faulty Chinese name giving by westerners in the 20th century).
1921: Working together Mongolian Armed Forces and Soviet Russian Forces mop up remaining "White Russian" Forces in (Outer Mongolia), Mongolia minus the Tyvan (Republic) and large territory of Buryat Mongols in Siberia was effectively split off becoming separate parts of the Soviet East Asian Empire, while the rest of Mongolian Territory (Today: Mongolia) was declared a Russian (Soviet) Protectorate State. This was largely in response to Chinese moves in "Inner Mongolia".
Map of China and Bordering Nations of Asia - Detailed Topographical View
A Geographical overview Map of China and neighboring Nations of Central, East and South-East Asia with National Borders and Capitals. Nations are Vietnam, Laos, Myanmar (Burma), Bhutan, Sikkim, Nepal, India, parts of Pakistan, parts of Afghanistan, Tajikistan, parts of Kyrgystan, parts of Kazakhstan, Eastern parts of Russia (Russian Federation), Republic of Mongolia, North Korea, South Korea, a small part of Japan, and further the South-East Asian Nations of the Philippines, Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, MyanMar (Burma) and Bangladesh.
1921: Swedish Archeologist John Gunar Andersson began excavations at the first site identified as being part of the early Chinese Yangshao Cultures (5000 BC - 3000 BC) in the north-west of Henan Province. The culture is named after the location of this first find: Yangshao. Later in history it would be proven that the culture extended further westward in Shanxi and Shaanxi Provinces. Today, the earliest remains of this culture may be found at the renowned Banpo Neolithic Culture site (of the Yangshao Culture) on the outskirts of Xi'An (Ancient Chang'An), the old western Chinese Capital and starting point of the silk road (from a Chinese perspective).
1921: In the year following the defeat of Syria in the war against the French, a French military base was built near the village at the ruined historic site of Palmyra.
1921: Find of the object today known as Plimpton 322 at Senkereh (suspected to be Larsa (possibly Biblical Ellasar, Genesis 14:1)), in southern Iraq. The object, a Sumerian Era (4500 BC - 1900 BC) clay tablet, passes into western hands in 1922 to make its way to Museums and collectors. Later, after years of careful studies it is dated to 1850 BC - 1600 BC and shown to be a trigonometric tablet, inscribed not in decimal but hexasigimal system. This makes it the oldest known trigonometric table and calculations known human history as previously the Greek Philosopher Hipparchus (Grieks: Ίππαρχος ο Ρόδιος of Ίππαρχος ο Νικαεύς)(Life: 190 BC - 120 BC) was held to have been the "father of Trigonometry" (one of the first proponents of).
1922: Turkish Armed Forces led by Mustapha Kemal (Later: Kemal Ataturk) routed the Greek Army in Anatolia subsequently pursuing the beaten Greek Forces to Smyrna (Today: Izmir in Turkey ; historically Smyrna: refounded in 4th century BC after take over by armies of Alexander the Great). Turkish Forces take Smyrna and massacre tens of thousands of Greeks among them a sizeable portion of the civilan population.
1922: Kurdish Liberation movement eyeing promised ideas as autonomy and freedom which never materialize start an uprising against British occupation forces in Iraq. The unrest will last through into 1924.
1923: Mongolian women in the Mongolian Peoples Republic win the right to vote and also to be elected.
Female British archeologist Gertrude Margareth Lowthian Bell founds the Iraq National Museum at Baghdad in Iraq and becomes its first Director of antiquities (1923 - 1926). She will remain the director until her death in 1926 (apparently from an overdose of sleeping pills).
1923 AD - 1925 AD: In the spring of 1923 twenty-eight camels, 6 horses, 4 Mongolian guides forming the backbone of the Wulsin expedition (under Aegis of the National Geographic Society in the United States of America) set off from Paotow (Baotou) on the Yellow River (in Inner Mongolia AR) on an unprecedented exploration mission through Inner-Mongolia and along Chinese parts of the Silk Road. During the two year long journey husband Frederick Wulsin records flora and fauna, wildlife and other natural features of the regions while Janett Elliot Wulsin documents it in around 1200 photos leaving unique data and images. The route followed leads through Inner-Mongolia, Ningxia, Gansu and finally East Tibet (Qinghai Province).
December 1923: Mustapha Kemal becomes the first ever President of the free and independent Turkish Republic, which is a non-religious state. Westernization and secularization of Turkish society began soon after.
22 August, 1861 AD: Having fled before British and French Forces invading Beijing in October of 1860, the weak Manchu Emperor Xianfeng (Reign: 1850 - 1861) dies at the Imperial Fleeing the Heat Mountain Villa (Bishu Shanzhuang) Imperial Palace in Chengde (Jehol) near the Great Wall of China in Manchuria. In the aftermath, through a number of events followed by a Coup D Etat, effective Government fell into the hands of the Empress-Dowager Cixi, who - through various political constructions - ruled over China until her death in 1908.
1862 AD: The major native insurrection in Chinese Turkestan and Gansu Province, the so called Dzungar Rebellion takes off as Islamic Rebels under leadership of Yakub Beg, a Tajik adventurer and free thinker, take large territories in Gansu Province and Chinese Turkestan (Xinjiang) in an anti-Manchu Qing and anti-Chinese Rebellion. The rebellion would last until the death of Yakub Beg in 1873.
1862 AD: Birth of Aurel Stein, a Hungarian-British archeologist and Central Asian explorer.
1865 AD: Russian Forces attacking the Muslim States of Central Asia continued to advance eastward against numerous but poorly armed opposition, taking Kokand (Uzbek: Қўқон ; Persian: خوقند ; Russian: Хӯқанд (Quqand)) and the key Uzbek City of Tashkent (Current day Capital of Uzbekistan).
The Palace Pavilion in Jehol (Chengde) where Emperor Xianfeng died not long after signing a humiliating defeat at the hands of Foreign Invading Nations. (Photo: 2005)
China Report - Colonialism - Growth of Colonies & Japan after 1801 AD
A Map drawing of the Eurasian continent , parts of North-East Africa and the Middle East in the 19Th Century between 1801 AD and 1900 AD. Focal points are the expansion of western colonial posessions of Portugal, Britain and France, as well as Russia moving from West to East. Labeled seperately is the later Rise of the Empire of Japan in the East.
Included in this Map are the main cities across the continent with their brief histories and events during the 19Th Century. Marked in Colors for clarity are the various colonial and imperialist Nations. As relating to China; special attention is payed to so called Treaty Ports. The First Treaty Ports were forced open by Britain in the year 1841 AD, but counted over 80 in total by the end of the 19Th Century. The most important Treaty Ports in China are marked and described with a short history where the map allows.
; Persian: خیوه ; Russian: Хива) (in current day southern Uzbekistan) finally breaking the resistance of the Khanate of Khiva. Its territories much reduced, the Khiva Khanate becomes a Russian Protectorate.
1875 AD: Dungang / Hui Minorities are removed from the Hexi Corridor in Gansu and resettled in the South-West of the Province in order to prevent contact between the Muslim groups and the organization of future combined uprisings in the West (Xinjiang) and East (Gansu, Ningxia, Shaanxi) simultaneously.
1876-1879: a severe drought period lasting some three years causes devastating famines in northern China at the cost of an estimated 10 to 12 million lives.
1876: The China Inland Mission, which is emerging as one of the largest and most active (Protestant) Christian Missionary organizations in China, establishes a first mission in Shanxi Province. Francis James and Joshua J. Turner set up shop and start working to help those stricken by famine and disease. In the sam year Frederick W. Baller and George King are the first protestant missionaries to set up a Church in Shaanxi Province. Also in the same year George F. Easton and George Parker are the first missionaries to take up work in Gansu Province in western China along the Silk Road.
May 1877: Death of Yaqub Beg, ruler of Kashgaria, Aksu, Hotan and Korla in Korla.
1877 AD: After George Smith briefly worked the Nimrud archeological site near Mosul (ancient Nineveh) in northern Iraq in 1873 and Hormudz Rassam returned there from 1877 to 1879. After his departure the Nimrud site was left untouched by scientists for almost 60 years (until a British School of Archaeology in Iraq team led by Max Mallowan resumed digging at Nimrud in 1949).
1877 : The name Silk Road, describing the network of trading routes across Central Asia is coined in 1877 by German geographer Ferdinand von Richthofen.
1877: French archeologist Ernest de Sarzec began excavations at Telloh (Lagash) in southern Mesopotamia (Iraq). Excavations lasted altogether some 14 years (1877-1901) uncovering in the process tablets written in cuneiform script and other ancient artifacts which, after dedicated study at western Universities, ultimately proved the historical existence of the Sumerian civilization and culture.
1878 AD: For the second time British Forces attacked Afghanistan. After defeating Afghan Forces at Peiwar Kotal, British Forces advance on Kabul taking the city with ease. However, in 1879 a massive Afghan uprising forced the British out of Kabul. Although the British manage to retake Kabul taking effective control of the entire country (territory) remains out of the question. In 1881, having installed a stooge ruler Abdur Rahman, British Forces withdraw from Afghanistan in 1881. The stooge rule of Abdur Rahman remained disputed by the brother of the deposed King Yakub Khan.
In the same year, 1878, Manchu Armies led by General Zuo-zong Tang complete their military campaign against Yakub Beg's rebellious Dzungar Islamic Forces in western Xinjiang, decisively defeating this rebellion and retaking most of the lost territories for the Manchu Qing Throne.
1878 AD: Jenny (Faulding) Taylor is first female Christian Missionary to travel in inland China. In 1878, having heard of the ongoing mysery of the Great North China Famine, she travels to Shanxi Province (with a female companion) in order to try help alleviate suffering. She establishes an orphanage in the city of Taiyuan, Capital of Shanxi Province.
1880: Elizabeth Wilson, grand-daughter of Elizabeth Hanbury, becomes the first female protestant missionary to help spread the gospel in Gansu Province in western China.
1881 AD: Russia withdraws from the Qing Dynasties territories in the Ili Valley (Today in Ili-Kazakh Autonomous Prefecture, Xinjiang Uyghur-Autonomous Region, China (P.R.C.)) which it had occupied since 1871. In Return for this "gesture" Russia receives 90 million rubles and the possession of other Qing Dynasty Territories in the nearby valley of the Irtysh River creating a local border arrangement which basically lasts to this day.
1881: First archeological excavations of he site of Mount Nemrut (Turkish: Nemrut Dağı; Kurdish: Çiyayê Nemrûdê; Armenian: Նեմրութ լեռ), due to the presence of mysterious ancient statues on its top the suspected location of a 1st century A.D. Royal Tomb, are done by Karl Sester, a German engineer assessing transport routes for the Ottomans. Although subsequent excavations have failed to reveal the tomb of King Antiochus, the site is nevertheless still believed to be the site of his burial.
1884: Russia completes the Trans-Urals railroad, which as its name suggests for the first time had a railway across the Urals Mountains from west to East.
1888: Death of the Russian Central Asia and Silk Road explorer, geographer and adventurer extraordinaire Prezhevalsky ((Russian: Никола́й Миха́йлович Пржева́льский)(Life: April 12 [O.S. March 31] 1839 - November 1 [O.S. October 20] 1888) at Karakol Town in Kyrgyzstan.
January-February 1934: Battle of Kashgar takes place between united Uighur and Kyrgyz Forces of the East Turkestan Republic and Kuomintang Nationalist Army units composed of Hui consripts and officers. The latter are victorious capturing and then executing various rebel leaders and following.
March 1934: In western Chinese Turkestan (Xinjiang) reportedly, the rebellious Muslim Emir of the First East Turkestan Republic, Abdullah Bughra, was beheaded by the Chinese Muslim 36th Division of the National Revolutionary Army (Kuomintang) led by General Ma Zhongying. (According to various sources) His head is put on display in front of the Id-Kah Mosque, the main Mosque of Kashgar.
April 1934: Chinese Hui Muslim General Ma Zongying gave a public speech the the historic Id-Kah Mosque the main mosque of the silk road market town of Kashgar, in the west of Chinese Turkestan (Xinjiang). The General urges local Muslims to be loyal to the Chinese Nationalist Kuomintang Government (rather than claim Independence or be involved with Russia or other parties).
1934: Official discovery of The Xiaohe Tomb complex (also: Ördek’s Necropolis) is located to the west of "wandering lake" Lop Nur. This bronze-age burial site was originally discovered by Ördek’s, a helper of Sven Hedin during his early expeditions around Lop Nor. The information was thus passed to Folke Bergman, who may be considered Hedin's pupil in these matters, and subsequently missions were sent there in order to rediscover more lost silk road heritage. Since then, the site has become world famous.
Today the Xiaohe Tomb site is nothing more than an oblong sand dune found in a vast wind and sand blown wasteland.
Although the site at first was never excavated (among things due to political events in China), since the early 1990's the site has regained interest and by now is well explored. More than thirty well preserved caucasian mummies have been excavated. The entire Xiaohe Tomb complex contains about 330 tombs, about 160 of which have been violated by grave robbers.
An excavation project by the Xinjiang Cultural Relics and Archaeology Institute began in October 2003. A total of 167 tombs have been dug up since the end of 2002 and excavations have revealed hundreds of smaller tombs built in layers, as well as other precious artifacts. In 2006, a valuable archeological finding was uncovered: a boat-shaped coffin wrapped in ox hide, containing the mummified body of a young woman.
In the period 1929 to 1935 a lesser known Swedish explorer by the name of Folke Bergman (1902 AD - 1946 AD) traveled through the Xinjiang Region in order to record its geographical features and in the search of archeological remnants of the rich history of the regions and the Silk Road. During these exploits, while in the regions of the Lop Nor lake, the explorer was inadvertently introduced to a local Uyghur hunter, one Ördek, who subsequently revealed to him a tomb site that had been discovered by him already in the year 1910 AD while working with Sven Hedin.
The site which Bergman was led to is now known in archeology circles as the Xiaohe (Little River) bronze age historical site. As was in the following months well document, the neolithic site at Xiaohe in Lop Nor consisted of the clear remains of small and primitive settlement which also had an adjoining cemetery on a hill marked by circularly arranged wooden posts. The site was close to a river bed, which Bergman named Xiaohe, or “Small River.”, hence the current name of the site.
Today the cemetery attached to the Xiaohe has been named the “Ördek’s necropolis,” in honor of Sven Hedin's Uyghur guide who originally
Sven Hedin and Folke Bergman seated togther inside a yurt during Hedins last great mission of exploration in 1934. The Xiaohe Tomb find was the crowning piece in years of exploration along the Silk Road in Xinjiang.
discovered the site. It is the location of infamous historic finds such as the first hashish (marihuana) and the first woven pants in world history, which by chance of a weaving quality unsurpassed in China until at least the 7th century AD.
Schematic overview of the main pathways of the Silk Road(s) in Asia, throughout the millennia between Rome and Byzantium in the west and Chang An, Luoyang, Datong or Beijing in the far east of Asia. Main road is depicted in red, by ways in blue. The Eurasian steppe route is often seen as separate but factually and historically should not be discounted as such. + Click Map locations to link through to information by location!
1929: Beginning of archeological excavations at Palmyra in Syria under supervision of the general director of antiquities in Syria, Henri Arnold Seyrig. While excavating the ruins, Seyrig managed to convince the villagers to move away by promising them the building of a new and better equiped French-built village next to the site which would become known as Tadmur. The clearing of the entire Palmyra site of population was completed in 1932.
1930: Kurdish national movement forces led by Sheikh Mahmud rise up in northern Iraq, but are eventually suppressed by British supported Iraqi Forces. While a similar Kurdish uprising in Iranian parts are defeated during the summer (June and July), the insurrections in northern Iraq last well into 1931. Afterwards a dream of Kurdish National independence remains alive and simmering.
Around the year 1930, by then legendary Silk Road explorer Sir Aurel Stein undertakes early excavations at Kerman (کرمان), ancient Capital of Kerman Province in western Iran famous for its Zoroastrian Culture. The research by Stein involves Shahr-e Sūkhté (Persian: شهرِ سوخته, meaning "[The] Burnt City") a mysterious bronze age site measuring 25 hectares containing numerous graves and other ruined structures.
1930: Constantinople (Historically: Byzantium), the former Capital of the Eastern Roman Empire is renamed Istanbul, which had since long been the
In 1930: A mining team sent in to explore and prepare a certain location in Gobustan in current day Absheron Province of Azerbaidjan, due south of Baku on the Caspian Sea coast, rediscovers the true archeological and cultural value of this location. Today known as the Gobustan Rock Art Cultural Lanscape, the miners discover abundant rock engravings and
engraved caves, alerting the world of their presence, thus saving a record of over 40 millennia of human activity for future generations.
1931: The clandestine fundamentalist Zionist Jewish organization of Irgun Zvai Leumi (National Military Organization) is established in Palestine. Its aims are to overthrow powers of British occupation forces and rival Palestinian and Arab groups in Palestine through the force of arms.
1931: Death of the Sharif of Mecca, Hussein Ibn-Ali, King of Hejaz. In previous decades he was a major leading figure in the Arab Revolt against Ottoman Rule, loser n the Arab Civil War and father of King Faisal I of Syria (1918 - 1920) who was also later King of Iraq (1923 - 1933). He was also Father of King Hussein (Rule: 1946 - 1951) of trans-Jordania (Today: Jordania).
1931: Kuomintang anti-bandit actions start against the Jiangxi Soviet established in the mountains of Jiangxi Province in China. It will the start of repeated campaigns against Communist strongholds in China, ultimately leading Communist Rebel Forces to embark on the "Long March".
1932: Black American writer, poet, political activist and photographer Langston Hughes (Life: 1902 - 1967), in his days and later remembered as the most influential writer of the 1920s (Harlem) Black American Renaissance (Movement), reaches the Silk Road as he tours several southern states of the Soviet Union (U.S.S.R.), notably described by him as Nations much alike the dustry cotton producing states he knew so well from his early life in the United States. He thus travels through Moscow to spend several months on the road in Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan and Tajikistan. Under the title "A Negro views the Soviet Union" he leaves historic account of life in these souther parts of Soviet Central Asia, among things lauding the apparent racial and social equality and other perceived progress made in the Soviet Union under guidance of Marxism-Leninism.
September, 1932: The family of Saud establishes the Nation of Saudi Arabia, which it will rule from that day forward until today. Ibn Saud, victor in the Arab Civil War (1902 - 19250 is the first King of Saudi Arabia.
1933: Iraqi military forces with British air support once more defeat a Kurdish uprising in northern parts of Iraq. In the same year Iraq becomes and officially independent State with King Faisal (Previously of Syria) as the head of the ruling Monarchy.
August 9, 1933: Uighur Leader Timur Beg (Life: 1886 - Nov. 9, 1933) who previously had declared himself Emir is killed by Chinese (Hui) Muslim General Ma Zhancang, who with his 36th Hui Division has been dispatched to stamp out any rebellions in Xinjiang and reclaim the territory for China (the Kuomintang Nationalist Republic). Timur Beg is shot, the beheaded and subsequently the head of the dead Emir is put on display at the Kashgar Id-Kah Mosque center of Uyghur life in Kashgar since centuries as a warning to the local population.
November 8, 1933; Nadir Shah, the self proclaimed King of Afghanistan is assassinated. He was succeeded by his son Mohammed Zahir Shah (Rule: 1933 - 1973). It is the beginning of the last Monastic reign period in Afghan history, a time during which the Afghan Nation bloomed.
1933: A giant earthquake and aftershocks hit Gansu Province along the rim of the Tibetan Plateaux costing an estimated 70 thousand human lifes in towns and villages across the region.
1933: Andre Parrot, a French archeologist, led a team to do excavations at Tell Hariri, better known as the ancient Mesopotamian City of Mari (which is situated along the silk road in modern day Syria). It is the first archeological dig at the ancient city sacked by the competing Babylonians in the year 1760 BC (estimated).
Youtube Video: The (Communist) Holocaust in Mongolia. Testimony of a horrific era in recent Mongolian history.
of Islam forcing the Hashimite King Hussein Ibn Ali to abdicate. This marks the end of the long Arabian Civil War (1902-1925).
1925: Zionist-Revisionist Movement was invented and founded by Vladimir Jabotinsky. The Jewish movement called for armed struggle against British occupation forces in Palestine. Among things, over the next years and decades the success of the movement would lead to growing Jewish migration into Palestine. The Zionist Theory would later be copied by the Jewish terrorist organization Irgun Zvai Leumi, which was headed by Menachim Begin. Begin would become a crucial military leader and later President of Israel making Zionism the founding theory of the State of Israel (founded in 1948 in Palestine).
1925: Reza Khan formally became the Shah of Iran, the newly founded revolutionary state previously known as Persia. The so called Shah of Iran founded a new Monarchy and Dynasty known as the Pavlevi's. Supported by foreign regimes and investments, the new Dynasty went on to rule the Nation with an iron fist.
1925: Unrest and insurrections become more and more frequent in Kurdish territories split between Iraq, Iran and the newly founded state of Turkey. In Turkish held territories a substantial uprising is defeated with arms driving the Kurds across the border into Iraq (and Iran) from where they start operating a guerilla type war. This guerilla war lasts through to this day.
1925: A nationwide uprising against French Occupation start in Syria. Armed Druze rebels initially book military successes against the French in southern Syria. In December Damascus, the historic Capital of Syria, falls to Druze armed forces.
In 1927 A.D. a massive earthquake struck the city of Wuwei in the Hexi Corridor of Gansu Province, reducing most of the local buildings and monuments to rubble. The quake also known as the Gulang Earthquake event after the location of its epicenter is estimated to have measured around 7.6 to 8.0 on the Richter Scale and was felt across the Yellow River Basin to a distance of over 700 kilometers away. Although the regions were sparsely inhabited at the time, the total death toll of the quake event stands at an estimated 49.000 souls. Reportedly, in the town of Gulang almost the only thing left standing was a 20 meter long section of the city walls and some decorated archways. All cave houses and rural dwellings in the wider regions of Gulang and Wuwei city were destroyed.
1927: French occupying forces in Syria defeat the Druzes and their allies retaking control of Syria by force of arms.
1927: Canadian paleontologist Davidson Black an others discovered the remains of more than 40 homo erectus specimen at Zhoukoudian. The find location and find become known as the Peking Man. Although the bones of the Peking Man which are dated between 460. 000 and 230.000 BC are eventually lost (a historic Mystery) the find and location become internationally famous sparking off the imagination of the world.
July 11, 1927: , 15:08 PM The Jericho Earthquake of 1927 shook Mandatory Palestine and the British Governate of Trans-Jordan causing heavy damage in the cities of Jerusalem, Jericho, Ramble, Tiberias and Nablus. In the event hundreds of lives are lost and heavy damage was incurred by a number of historic monuments among the Church of the Holy Sepulchre ( -- ; also Church of the Ressurection) and the Al-Aqsa Mosque (--) in Jerusalem. In Nablus the Great Mosque of Nablus and Mosque of Victory (Al-Nasr Mosque ; --) suffered damage while in Ramla and Tiberias housing collapsed and heavy damage reported to most of the towns.
1928: British archeologist Vere-Golden Childe published ”The Most Central near East”, a key work in the study of Central near Eastern History and the development of farming.
1928: Archeologist of the Oriental Institute of Chicago arrive at Khorsabad (Dur-Sharrakin) in north Iraq to start renewed archeological excavations at this important silk road relic site. Excavations by teams from the Oriental Institute continue until 1935. Among things a collosal 40 ton stone bull is found and, in parts, retrieved to Chicago.
January 1929: King Ammanullah of Afghanistan abdicates his throne. In the aftermath Afghanistan descends into civil war. Forces of Mohamed Nadir Khan take the traditional Capital of Kabul in October after which he has his main rival Habibullah Hazi executed. Nadir Khan then becomes King Nadir Shah of Afghanistan.
In the turbulent year Babrak Karmal, the later first and only Communist President of Afghanistan is born as Sultan Hussein in Kabul.
In 1929, a four man team of archeologists; British Agnes Conway and George Horsfield, a Palestinian physician and folkore expert named (Dr) Tawfiq Canaan, and Danish Ditlef Nielsen take up archeological excavations and do surveys at the ancient hidden city of Petra in trans-Jordania (Today: Kingdom of Jordan).
1907 AD: In the spring of 1907 AD French Newspaper "Le Matin" (The morning) grabs the worlds attention and imagination by issuing an extra-ordinary challenge : Who will travel from Peking (Beijing) to Paris by motor-car this Summer? What is still hailed as the maddest motor-car race in human history was on. Eventually the challenge is accepted by a team of 3 Italians, Prince Scipione Borghese, his chauffeur Ettore and one Luigi Barzini, the latter an experienced international journalist responsible for telegraphing back reports on the race and its progress. The route leads from the (now former) Foreign Legations Quarter in Beijing through Inner-Mongolia, Mongolia and Russia is known as the trans-eurasian trade route, the northernmost part of the larger Silk Road pathways.
1907 AD: Russia completes the Tashkent (Uzbekistan) to Orenburg (Оренбург ; Today: Orenburg Oblast, Russian Federation, very near the Kazakhstan border) Railway.
21 October, 1907: The 1907 Qaratog earthquake occurred at 04:23 UTC on 21 October near Qaratog (Karatag) in the border area between Uzbekistan and Tajikistan. The shock had an estimated surface wave magnitude of 7.4 and a maximum felt intensity of IX (Violent) on the Mercalli intensity scale. Estimates of the death toll range between 12,000 and 15,000.
1908 AD: A year after the magnificent "discovery" of the Library of scriptures at the the Mogao Caves near Dunhuang, French archeologist Paul Pelliot visited what was then identified as the Caves of the Ten Thousand Buddha's (a common referral to holy caves), today the Mogao Caves, again taking away thousands of ancient Buddhist scriptures (a multitude of scrolls, manuscripts and also scraps).
In the same period European archeologists were taking thousands of artifacts out of Central Asia, sometimes - as was the case in Dunhuang - sawing entire statues and murals off the wall and shipping them out to overseas or overland destinations.
November 15, 1908: Death of Empress Dowager Cixi (Life: 1861 AD - 1908 AD), by many historians today recognized as the last great Monastic ruler of the Manchu-Chinese Qing Dynasty (1644 AD - (1911 AD). She had ruled over the Manchu Empire for 47 years during which the Dynasty saw only problems, revolts, foreign invasions and in general a steep decline. The death of the Empress-Dowager left the already dying Dynasty headless, the rule in the hands of a figurehead Emperor (Pu Yi), a severely under aged child.
The winning car in the Peking to Paris Race.
Asia Report - Schematic Relief Overview Map of Afghanistan and Cities
A simple schematic map overview Map of Afghanistan, delineating borders with adjoining Nations of Central Asia and depicting the rough locations of all cities within Afghanistan.
Map includes names of all Provincial Capital cities of Afghanistan and Provinces, relief of terrain.
Browse the map, navigate cities and click through for more information by location.
1839 AD: British Indian Forces attacked northward moving into Afghanistan. They take the Afghan Capital of Kabul while reporting of meeting only moderate resistance. After the fall of the Capital, the Afghan Emir and founder of the Barkazai Dynasty, Dost Muhammad (Pashto: دوست محمد خان) is deposed and replaced with a British Stooge ruler. The fallen Emir was exiled to Mussoori in north India.
1841: Afghan Forces led by Akhbar Khan rose against British occupation forces in the Afghan Capital City of Kabul, forcing the British Forces out of the city. British Forces surrender in November of 1841. They are promised a safe passage out of Afghan Territories.
1842 AD: British Forces who had previously invaded Afghanistan started their "retreat from Kabul". On January 13 of 1842 British soldiers and civilians who have been guaranteed a safe passage out are massacred by Afghan Forces at the Khyber Pass (which since remains notorious). Of the 16 thousand 500 refugees only a handful survive the ordeal. Later in the year a British spring and summer offensive brings British Forces to retake Kabul but by December of 1842, the British once more retreat back into northern India (Today: Pakistan). This final retreat ended what is today known as the "First Afghan-British War".
April 1842 AD: The British puppet ruler of Afghanistan, Shah Shuja` is murdered. In the aftermath the fallen Emir of Afghanistan, Dost Muhammad Is returned to Kabul with British consent in an attempt to restore the peace in the Afghan Capital of Kabul.
1842: The Dur-Sharrukin ( ; Fortress of Sargun) at Khorsabad was first noticed by Paul-Emille Botta, who at the time was the French Consul to Mosul (ancient Niniveh). Since Botta believed the ruins at Khorsabad to be the lost remains of the ancient Assyrian Capital of Niniveh, he excavated the site between 1842 and 1844, finding a considerable number of archeological treasures and relics.
1845 - 1847 AD: Excavations at the ruins of the ancient City of Nimrud near Mosul in northern Iraq were conducted by Austen Henry Layard. In 1849 he returns for a second archeological mission working on into 1951. Among things Layard found cuneiform scripts (carved in stone), however he was unable to come to a conclusion as to the exact nature and origins of the site. Following Layard's departure, the work was handed over to Hormuzd Rassam, himself an Assyrian, in 1853-54 and then W. K. Loftus in who excavated and studied the site in 1854-55.
1850 AD: Death of the Daoguang Emperor (Reign: 1821-1850), the 6th Emperor of the Manchu Empire.
1852: Archeological excavations at Khorsabad (Dur-Sharrukin) in northern Iraq are resumed by Victor Place and continue on to 1955.
1853-1854: The site of Tell El-MMuqayyar (Later proven to be the City of Ur) was first excavated, on behalf of the British Museum and with instructions from the Foreign Office, by John George Taylor, British vice consul at Basra in Iraq from 1851 to 1859. The Taylor archeological dig uncovered the Ziggurat of Ur and a structure with an arch later identified as part of the "Gate of Judgment"
1854 AD: Persia (Iran) lost the Syr River Basin to advancing Russian Forces which ended Persian influence in Central Asian territories.
A SatelliteImage overview Map of the entireTibetanPlateaux including parts of bordering regions of Xinjiang-UyghurAR, Gansu Province, NingxiaHuiAR, Inner-MongoliaAR,Sichuan Province,andYunnan Province. Surrounding nations and Territories are: Myanmar (Burma), Bhutan, Sikkim, Nepal, Bangladesh, India, Kashmir and Pakistan.
This Map clearly defines Provinces and Regions, main mountain ranges, main rivers & lakes of the region, locations of main cities and landmarks.
1914: British Armed Forces take de facto control of Central and Eastern Tibet, subsequently attempting set up a British Protectorate in Tibet.
1914: Birth of Mohammed Zahir Shah (Life: 1914 - 2007)(Pashto: محمد ظاهرشاه ; Persian: محمد ظاهر شاه) who would rise to the throne in 1933, to be the last King and Ruler of Afghanistan until a coup d'etat in 1973.
1915: Marcus Aurel Stein returns to the Mogao 10 Thousand Buddha Caves near Dunhuang (today in Gansu Province, China (P.R.C.)) in order to take some 600 more documents from its ancient library of Buddhist scriptures, scrolls and manuscripts. Today he remains a despised historic persona due to what is seen by the general Chinese public as theft of cultural heritage.
1914-1915: S.F. Oldenburg expedition brings Mongolian and Chinese scriptures and documents from Dunhuang in Western Gansu Province.
In October of 1917, as part of a general British effort to undermine the falling Turkish-Ottoman Empire, at Petra in Jordan (at the time Trans-Jordania), a Revolt of Arabs was led by British Army Officer T.E. Lawrence a.ka. Lawrence of Arabia .Beduin Women of Petra Oasis led by the Sheikh Khallil's wife train and take up arms. With the hidden silk road city a perfectly well defendable position, Petra holds as a bastion of the anti-Ottoman revolt. No damage to the historic ruins of Petra is reported.
The Arab riots in Jordan eventually crush the Ottoman-Turkish authority in large parts of the Middle East.
1920-1921: While the Franco-Syrian War for conrtol over Syrian territories rages and the territories of Palestine are shortly to be handed over to United Nations control and administration, Jewish settlers in Palestine organize their very own elections. The situation
comes to boiling point in Palestine and the "Arab Riots" of 1920 and Jaffa Riots of 1922 mark a step up in tensions and violence between bands of unwanted Jewish immigrants and Arab populations in various cities and territories. In the aftermath Jewish organizations and communities establish the Haganah, an official army, as a tool for Jewish settlers to defend themselves against aggression from Arabs and Palestinians. Meanwhile, Jewish settlers continue to claim and buy more land. The Haganah soon becomes the spearpoint of Jewish military operations in Palestine before the advent of the Jewish Zionist State of Israel, cut by force from the land of Palestine.
China Historic Map - Route Long March 1934/35 - 1A
A Schematic overview Map of the current Peoples Republic of China depicting the main route(s) of the epic Long March of 1934 and 1935.
Map clearly delineates PRC China current National borders and includes Provinces and Autonomous Regions, Main Cities and relevant Towns, initial Communist Soviets (Self-administered rebel areas), the routes followed by various elements among the Communist Groups and Armies, locations of important meetings points, main natural obstacles such as mountain ranges, the flow of large rivers such as the Yangtze River and Yellow River, position of the Great Wall of China in Gansu Province, Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region, North Shaanxi Province etc, rough estimated routes of main railroads of the time and other details of interest.
Mouse over locations and link through for additional information on each location.
October 1934: Start of the Communist Long March in China. The Epic march which last about a year for some and for the last parties a little more will also lead the Communist Armies to cross over the easternmost parts of the Tibetan Plateaux therafter reaching the Silk Road and the Great Wall of China.
In the second half of 1935 Communist Forces cross from Gansu into Shaanxi on their way to the take-over of a Rebel Soviet based at Bao'An in Shaanxi (Today: Zhidan of Zhidan County, Yenan City Prefecture, later renamed after the soon dead 1st Rebel Leader Li Zhidan).
1935: The old name Persia was dropped in favor of the more modern sounding Iran, which is still the correct term for the Nation and country today.
1936: A huge earthquake shook Quetta, in Balochistan of India (Today: Federally Administered Tribal Areas of Pakistan). The human death toll from the quake is estimated at over 50 thousand.
1936: Palestinian Arabs engage in a six month long general strike which then evolves into another armed conflict with armed groups of Jewish migrant-settlers (the Arab-Jewish Civil War 1936 to 1939) as well as British occupation forces.
1936: In adjacent Lebanon Christian Maronites create the Phalange Party with its own accodding armed militia in order to defend their local interest against local political turmoils, wars and ongoing strife between Arabs and Jews in Palestine.
1936: Less than a year after their arrival in the Shaanxi Soviet Base in the Yanan Area, Kuomintang Forces make ready to open a military offensive against the Yenan Base led by Mao Zedong and Zhou Enlai. The gathering of forces and the unique political and military opportunities lure Generalissimo Chiang Kai-Chek to Xian, startpoint of the silk road, to personally oversee the offensive. Instead of a military offensive moving north, the city and Nation witness the capture and holding hostage of the National President aka Generalissimo Chiang who is only freed after agreeing to sweeping changes in policy among them the formation of a United Front in a war against Japan and the active fighting back of Kuomintang Forces against this invading enemy. The offensive is postponed.
1937: Birth of Saddam Hussein (Life: 1937 - 2006), in later life army officer, Dictator and President of Iraq until his deposition in the 2nd gulf war in April of 2003.
1937: While in Palestine fighting between Jewish settler-migrants and concerned Arabs are a daily occurrence, the Palestinians gain growing support in neighboring nations and in British politics.
July 7, 1937: the so called Marco Polo Bridge (Lugou Qiao) incident south of Beijing launches a full scale and official war against China and Japan. The Sino-Japanese War will last until Japanese defeat in 1945 wrecking millions of lives across China and Asia. First open hostilities by Japan versus Western Allied Nations also occur with the sinking of the American gunboat Panay in the Yangtze River near Nanjing.
In 1937, 1938 and 1939, - recorded as the bloodiest years in Russian history - a Young British Diplomat named Fitzroy MacLean travels eastward from Moscow into the unknown and forbidden Russian heartlands. He first travels to the Kaukasus and then into Central Asia. In the course of his journey he reaches Azerbaijan and Georgia, and later, traveling by train along the trans-Siberian railway, Semipilatinsk (Semey) and Alma Ata (Almaty) in Kazakhstan. With the Russian security service NKVD on his trail MacLean then makes an illegal trip by cutting southward and traveling to the ancient Silk Road cities of Tashkent and Samarkand in Uzbekistan. At the end of his professional leave period and not willing to risk antagonizing his NKVD followers, MacLean does not initially reach Buchara (Today: Buxuro), but turns back and travels by train back through Kazakhstan to his diplomatic Station at the Embassy in Moscow. He is left dreaming of a visit to Buchara, the "end of the line" in Russian central Asia, and the renowned market City of Kashgar across the Tian Shan mountains in Chinese controlled Turkestan as it is then known to westerners.
The next year, in 1938 MacLean once more traveled by means of the Trans-Siberian railroad from Moscow down to Alma Ata (Almaty) from where, this time around, he set out to reach the Chinese controlled city of Kashgar in "Chinese Turkestan". According to McLean in his book "Eastern Approaches" traveled the rather odd route via Ajaguz (today: Ayagoz) 165 kilometers due north from Almaty in East Kazakhstan in order to take what he says was the main road to Urumqi. In truth however, Urumqi lies due east of Almaty, so another more direct route seems to have been logical. However perhaps MacLean made this extra effort in order to avoid being turned back by authorities, who were of course more active along the main border road and crossing.
Regardless of his obvious western appearance MacLean writes how he managed to make it to the border town of Bakhti, which is a place that today is hard to identify or find on maps. Subsequently, MacLean did cross the border into Chinese Territory aboard a bus, however in the next main town, identified as Chuchuqak, he was intercepted by local authorities. Although he falsely claimed to be on an official Mission from the British Empire to the Nationalist Government of China, he was turned back and had to return to Almaty. Soon after, aroused Soviet authorities made sure that MacLean was "evicted" from the city and put back on a train to Moscow.
1938: Year of great Soviet Stalinist Purge with tens if not hundreds of thousands executed across the Soviet Union.
1938: Death of Muhamed Kemal Ataturk, great first founder of the Turkish Republic (1919 - 1938).
1939: Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, Haj Amin Al-Husseini goes to Iraq, there beginning a long association with German Nazis which would allow him to flee to Germany during most of world war 2 (1939 - 1945).
1939: Archeologist Isaak Jafarazade undertakes the first excavations and studies of the Gobustan petroglyps and rock art at Gobustan in Absheron Province of Azerbaidjan. His was the first of many archeological mission to follow in the decades after. Today a UNESCO World Cultural Heritage site, over 6000 inscribed rocks have been identified along with burial grounds and settlements representing a period between the wet period following end of the last ice age (some 40 thousand B.C.) and the 8th century B.C. altogether providing a unique history of Azerbaidjani cultures and past practices otherwise long forgotten.
1940: A heavy earthquake kills an estimated 30 to 40 thousand people in and around Erzincan in Turkey.
1940: Abraham (also Avraham) Stern (Life:December 23, 1903 - February 12, 1942 AD) founded the terrorist Jewish Stern Gang (Also known as LEHI: Fighters for the Freedom of Israel) an extremist breakaway group of the already radical Irgun, the National Military Organization in the Land of Israel. Stern would be killed some 2 years later by British Forces, but after his death the organization would continue its activities until being outlawed after the establishment of the Jewish "State of Israel" founded entirely in zionist foundations. LEHI was responsible in the so called King David Hotel bombing of the British administrative headquarters in Jerusalem on 22 June 0f 1946 and also in the massacre in the Palestinian Village of Deair Yassin on April 9, 1948. Until LEHI was outlawed (In the new self-declared "state" Israel) later in the year, Yitzak Shamir, later President of Israel would be the commander of operations of the LEHI group.
1941: In the aftermath of the French defeat at German Hands in the year 1940, French General Georges Catroux has the foresight to declare the independence of Lebanon. Although factually, colonial French rule will continue until 1946, it is the beginning of a new Era for Lebanon.
August 25, 1941: Operation Countenance, the joint Anglo-Soviet Invasion of Iran starts. It is mainly an operation intended to secure the Oil Fields of this Nation in order to use them in war-time production of fuels and other materials. While Soviet Forces occupy much of the mountainous northern regions of Iran, Britian invades across the plains to take control of most strategic oil rich territories in the south. The operations are complete by September 17.
1942: British forces move into Syria taking the Syrian Capital of Damascus from the (Vichy) French on the 22nd of June 1942. In the next month French Forces in Syria formally surrender to Allied Forces (in the Middle East). British take control over Palmyra, its ancient ruins and its nearby military airfield.
1942: Jews in Palestine found the Palmach, an (illegal) armed militia group (paramilitary organization) which would evolve and emerge as a leading Elite Unit of the Israeli Army Haganah (1921-1948 ; later IDF Israel Defense Force). During World War 2, some Palmach Forces fought on the British side against the Axis Allies.After 1945 until 1949 the Palmach were considered the leading frontline troops of Jews in Palestine.
locally popular (Turkish) name for the city.
vice versa. In the violence and turmoil an estimated half a million people lose their lives. In the aftermath of the split, several territories, most notably the Jammu and Kashmir Region in the western Himalayas which elects to join India, remain heavily disputed creating grounds for lasting conflict between the newly created states. Border wars lasted until 1949, with new border wars occurring in 1965 and 1971 (not counting Chinese (P.R.C.) involvement in Jammu and Kashmir after the Chinese Invasion of Tibet in 1949 along the Tibet-India border).
Around November 4 of 1947 - A dissident tribe of Kazakh's who have earlier been evicted from their homelands in the Altai Mountains in northern Xinjiang, which at time has been made part of the semi-autonomous "East Turkestan Republic" (also known to westerners in China at the time as "The Soviet Occupied Zone (of Xinjiang)", cross from the
Schematic Map of the Yellow River Flow Path 01A
A Full Schematic Map of the entire flow path of the Yellow River. Map overviews Qinghai Province, Parts of Sichuan Province, Gansu Province, Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region, parts of the Republic of Mongolia, Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region, Shaanxi Province, Shanxi Province, Henan Province and finally Shandong Province, giving a Full Overview of the length of the Yellow River. Clearly visible details of geographical features such as mountain ranges, rivers, valleys and lakes. The Map includes main cities along the River, popular and famous scenic spots, the dams and water reservoirs on the Huang He and other relevant informations.
Click the links to find more information on each individual location !
1947: After an official cooperation between the two main parties in China breaks down completely (as long anticipated), China once more descends into open civil war.
While the Kuomintang holds control of Central and Southern China while also retaining control of Western China (Parts of Xinjiang, the Hexi Corridor of Gansu Province, the city of Xining and today's Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region, the Communist hold sway in the country-side in northern and eastern China as well as large parts of Manchuria (developed through Soviet support).
The Kuomintang launches a military campaign to eradicate (Communist) Bandits from their home bases, bringing active civil war to the Yellow River Basin in China.
While several Foreign reporters manage to join the Communist forces in Northern Shaanxi Province (among them American Female writer and political activists Agnes Smedley) a Kuomintang Nationalist Army column led by Hu Zongnan (Chinese: 胡宗南; pinyin: Hú Zōngnán; Wade–Giles: Hu Tsung-nan; 16 May 1896 – 14 February 1962) advances on the Chinese Communist Rebel Capital of Yanan (also Yenan) in current day central Northern Shaanxi Province.
The town which has been the Capital of Communist Resistance in China since 1935 and the end of the so called "Long March" episode of the (1st) Civil War is taken in a Kuomintang Nationalist Party military offense on May 19, 1947. Although western journalists will report and through stories present the event as a heroic narrow escape of the core group of Communist Party leadership, in fact the Communists make an organized strategic withdrawal aimed at luring their old enemy General Hu Zhongnan astray from his home territory in order to fight him at a later time.
As described in several western reports (books) of the time, Mao Zedong is taken northward across the Yellow River (Huang He) in a boat, ultimately to live a mobile life on the run fleeing and fighting until the capture of Beijing in early 1949.
Regardless enormous numerical and technical superiority, ultimately the army of Hu Zhongnan was entirely unable to fight the Communist Armies, only some 20 thousand strong, led by General Peng Dehuai. The Kuomintang Forces held Yanan for about a week, then abandoning their efforts after suffering a defeat at Xihuachi due west of the city. In but a few years General Hu Zhongnan was left defeated retreating without army to Taiwan in 1950.
During the communist retreat out of Yanan as part of the "Battle of Yanan" a renowned photo of Mao Zedong
May 1947 AD - Douglas S. MacKiernan, an undercover CIA Agent posing as a Government Clerk starts his first journey on the Silk Road. Although they originally embark from Nanjing (Jiangsu Province), they reach Xi'An the ancient Capital of Shaanxi Province from where they make a 2400 mile journey along the so-called "Xinjiang Highway" which is actually the ancient pathway of the Silk Road. On this journey MacKiernan travels together with an old friend, Edwin Martin (In 1971-73 the U.S. Ambassador to Burma (Myanmar). During the long and exhausting haul from Xi'An through Lanzhou and up the Hexi Corridor into Xinjiang via Hami (Kumul) and then to Urumqi (Tihwa) MacKiernan drove a 6x6 army four wheeled truck, while his buddy Eddy Martin drove an army jeep. As far as is known, this was the first ever trans-Silk Road trek through China by motorcar ever performed by Americans (As stated: British Professor Needham had made a similar journey only to Dunhuang in Gansu Province in 1945).
sitting on a horse was made. Later this photo was (often) wrongfully attributed as being taken during the Long March, a historical event which took place over 10 years earlier.
The journey made along the path of the Silk Road to Mogao would prove invaluable to Joseph Needhams later work, the worlds largest and most complete encyclopedia on the contributions of the Chinese Civilization to the overall development of world civilization. In its first few volumes the Joseph Needham revealed and proved how the Chinese Civilization had invented many things, centuries before anyone in the West had done the same. Among these, the movable block printing press, the magnetic compass, forms of hard iron, the first seismograph, methods of construction and many more inventions. Most notably, the finds done by Aurel Stein at Mogao in the shape of the Diamond Sutra together with numerous other scriptures, would provide the ultimate proof that the Chinese Civilization of the East had invented printing centuries before a German Man named Guttenberg in the West had done so, as the Diamond Sutra is not hand-written, but block printed.
The Needham Encyclopedia Book, Science and Civilization in China (SCC) published by the Cambridge University Press, today counts 7 Volumes, composed of 24 books and is still growing after the death of Needham , the original main author on 24 March 1995.
Photo taken in 1945 by Professor Joseph Needham at the Mogao Buddhist Caves in Dunhuang after the arrival of the expedition at the site. Visible is a line of caves on the northern (downstream) part of the ridge which is also where the famous Library Cave which previously contained the Diamond Sutra (first printed book in world history) taken away by Aurel Stein in his 1906-07 stint in western China.
1924: Freed from the Library of Saint Petersburgh and given to the Muslims of Ufa, in Bashkortostan (Today: Autonomous Republic of the Russian Federation), by Vladimir Lenin after the 1917 Bolshevik Revolution, the Uthman Koran (also known as Samarkand Kufic Koran, Samarkand Codex, Samarkand Manuscript and Tashkent Koran; also spelled Osman Koran) an islamic codex, in Kufic script, dated back to the 8th century which belonged to Uthman ibn Affan, the third Caliph (of the four Righteous Caliphs who succeeded the Prophet Muhammad) and is believed to be the world’s oldest Koran copy is returned to Uzbekistan, where it has been kept in Tashkent ever since.