Jan 8 2020

The temple in 2020

The architectural concept, blueprint and the actual photo of the Liu Temple. They’ve celebration on Oct 4, 2019.

Is the stage too high?


Nov 2 2019

Bye, Beijing

It seems that I haven’t been to Beijing airport for a while: you go through security check first: they’re right up front, in your face. Since I’ve a few pieces, a young man mentioned to me to just go ahead. When I hesitate, he became rather unpleasant. Oh well.

Once inside, I immediately saw the vantage point of Forbidden City, which I just went two night before.

What interesting, I ran into the same flight attendant on my Pei-Sea, who was on my JFK-Sea too. Oh well.


Oct 30 2019

Tianjin Bank 天津官银号


Dongmalu (East Road), Nankai
天津市南开区东马路
Tianjin

A woman dances to the music alone. More dancers nearby.

Tianjin Official Bank was created at the beginning of the twentieth century by Zhou Xuexi, to compete with the foreign financial institutions. It was located at northeast corner of the old town (zh wiki北马路东端南侧三义庙处), and opened for business in 1902, changed name to Zhili Bank 直隶省银行 in 1913; closed in 1928 and the building was ruined. After 1949, Bank of China used its site. In 2004, the current replica was built next to TJ Ancient Cultural Street (古文化街) on Huanghe Road, in Nankai district. There are many traffic police stations in the city.

  

It doesn’t seem to have an exact address but is in the corner of Dongmalu (East Road) and Beimalu (North Road). The original location of the Bank is the corner across street – the corner of Tianlong Building天隆大厦那个角. My next stop was the General Mint.


The following is from iFeng.com on 2011.1.02:

作为历史区片地名的“官银号”,指老城厢东北角附近,就是今北马路东端南侧一带。“官银号”是清政府官方设立的金融机构。1900年八国联军侵入天津,各国纷纷在天津设立银行,使天津物资损耗,金融紊乱,原有钱庄银号逐渐萎缩。为恢复国内金融元气,清政府于1902年成立了天津第一个金融机构———直隶官银号,地址就在东北角北马路东端今正兴德茶庄西侧。该银号初创资本为100万元,性质为省级官办财政银行,一面发行银元钞票,十足兑现;一面经营本省金库,融通行政经费。

时任直隶总督兼北洋大臣的袁世凯在天津推行新政,他任用周学熙创建实业,在金融方面主要采取两项举措:(一)、开办北洋银元局、造币厂,开铸银元;(二)、筹办直隶官银号,以整顿金融,促进天津工商业的复苏与发展。

周学熙(1866~1947),安徽建德人,其父周馥为清两江总督。周学熙是当时中国北方财政、实业界的著名代表人物。他认为,金融为实业的先导和后盾,也是实业救国各种举措中举足轻重的关键一环,应把直隶官银号建成一个为发展实业服务的健全的现代金融机构。

周学熙在天津先后创办了北洋银元局、官银号、中国实业银行等金融机构,还开办了启新洋灰公司、滦州煤矿(后被英商吞并,组成开滦煤矿)、华新纱厂等实业,形成了实力雄厚的北洋财团,为振兴天津的工商业做出了一定的历史贡献。

20世纪初年,作为区片老地名的“东北角”,已被“官银号”所掩盖。有轨电车在此设站,售票员报站时的大声吆喝———“官银号到了,抓紧下车,您啦!”———形成有力的广告传媒效应。因而,“官银号”声名大振,和“大营门”、“小树林”、“下瓦房”等区片地名一同沿传至今。

1913年,北洋政府照银行条例在原址组成了直隶省银行,成为筹集军费的机构。后直隶省银行关闭,国民政府在该址又建立了河北省银行。中华人民共和国建立后,官银号旧址改为中国银行东北角分理处。派生地名有官银号菜市街、官银号副食综合商场等。


Oct 30 2019

Huaxin Street 华新街

After the Mint, we went eastward on the Shuichan Front Street 水产前街 and stopped at the junction of Huaxin St, which is named after Zhou Xuexi’s Huaxin Textile Factory in the area. 


A few minutes walk up north is 宁园 Ningyuan Park (also called Beining Park 北宁公园). The site of the park was the former Plantation of the late Qing Dynasty which was established by Zhou Xuexi in 1906.  


Oct 30 2019

TJ General Mint 造币总厂


137 Zhongshan Road 中山路
Tianjin

This is the original site of the General Mint of Feudal Chinese Ministry of Revenue, founded by Zhou Xuexi after Boxer Uprising. It’s on the verge to be demolished, even it’s a registered historical relic. A few concerned people are rallying all they could to stop it.

Having just passed by the Ancient Culture Street, which is a fake – newly built, I wonder why don’t they preserve the General Mint instead? The area is large with so many historical structures …

To the brave few who are trying to preserve it: good luck and be the force with you.

The site is massive, bigger than the Zhongshan Park (中山公园), which is located to its northeast corner. And is on the verge to be demolished. Notice of Compensation and Resettlement Plan for Non-residential Houses 非住宅房屋征收补偿安置方案 is prominent posted – to the upper left corner of the photo below.

  

The small path (it’s called Yuwei Road 宇纬路 on the nw side of the Zhongshan Road) to the right of the facade (inscribed by Wu Dingchang 吴鼎昌, an industrialist) goes in. On the right side, going straight is a small community with a security booth and to the right is where we want to visit – the old mint.

… beautiful courtyards and houses, although they’re all dilapidated …

A gentleman with raspy voice came out of his house and we stuck up a lengthy conversation. He proudly pointed to his windows “they’re so unique, you don’t see them nowadays any more …”. He’s from (a part of) 254 army hospital. After a little chatting, he invited us in. The old house has high ceiling and many details are intact.


Then the raspy voice led us to the two-story grey structure, #78. “It’s their office building,” he said.

It’s vacant now. Above the door, the engraving is barely visible “化学室” Chemistry Room. “There used to be a 鹤 crane but was smashed.

To the left side building, there is a room, probably added recently, long after 1976. Apparently a family is living there and they used the thin space between the building and wall as their kitchen.

 

cars or carts, pedaled and gasoline fueled …

I like doors and windows, obviously …

… oh … the undies in the courtyards …


Oct 29 2019

The disappearing history

Looking for old information, I went to Xicheng West End District Archives.

To remake their cities (and perhaps to show their achievements while in the office …) and aggressive developers, old historical remnants are being demolished, fast.

Qingdao: the 18 meter high fire watchtower on GuanXiang Road (望火楼; 1905-2009) on the western edge of the old observatory, and the train station (1901-1991) – the current train station is moved back 15 meters.

Ji’Nan: the old train station (1912-1992; by German architect 赫尔曼舍尔) and the two story commercial building (八卦楼; 1914-97).

 


Oct 28 2019

Trained in China, 2019


Trains in China … This year, the ¥5 fee charged for picking up other train stations’ tickets 异地取票 are gone. People are nicer in general, and most of them follows rule, like waiting on line. But there are always someone specially who insisted to cut the lines…

Hefei to Beijing: commercials embedded in the mirror in the bathroom.

  

Hankou


Oct 27 2019

Zhuanqiao Secondary School 砖桥中学

X064县道 刘墩街
Chaohu, Lujiang, Anhui

Going in from the hotel, and the street scenes between the School and the Temple. There is a big stone, donated by the Class of 1975, naming the area as Dream Chasing Dream Chasing Jujube Garden 追梦枣园.

 


Oct 25 2019

Happy Bay 幸福港湾


NE corner 经四路 纬二路
合肥市庐江县幸福港湾主题酒店
Lujiang, Hefei

Nearly two hours drive from the Hefei South rail station (70 km). The restaurant is next to Morning Market 晨光农贸. They kindly displayed a banner as a warm welcome, oh boy. The owner is a distant relative, who sweated in Wenzhou before coming home to open up his own shop. The cucumber cold appetizer is really good, look and texture wise. And I taste for the first time, their local rice dumplings, which is fried.

 


Oct 21 2019

The Ghost Town

¥290 ($41) to see a newly built old temple on the Yangzi River.

The original ghost temple is under the river now after …