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Copyright 2001-7 by Sue Brown & Dr.
Adapted from "Fujian
Adventure", Magic Fujian, and other
Fuzhou Links History
Nantai Island (Foreign Devils & Chinese Ghosts)
¡°How well I remember
reaching Sharp Peak on the 28th day of April, 1887!
It was a perfect day and the journey up the river was most fascinating,
for it was only three years before this that the French Bombardment had
occurred, and there were still evidences of it in the battered forts and
derelicts at Pagoda Anchorage. Also to be seen were the graves of the
large number of Chinese who lost their lives in that one-sided battle.
H. Shelley Brand, January 23rd, 1932.
Fifteen minutes east of Fuzhou lies Mawei, cradle of Chinese seamanship,
and site of the famous Pagoda Anchorage. Chinese named the giant rocks,
¡°Double Turtle Guarding the Door,¡± ¡°Five Tigers Defending the Gate,¡±
and ¡°Warriors Leg.¡± But turtles and tigers couldn¡¯t take on the French,
who on a sleepy Saturday morning in August 1884 destroyed the Chinese
fleet in about half an hour.
The French commander had in fact warned foreign consulates and the Chinese
the day before, but international law required at least 30 days notice.
The French refused China¡¯s request for one more day to prepare, attacked,
and seven hundred Chinese seamen now lie in a mass grave beside the Memorial
Hall of Majiang River Naval Battle.
Hall of Majiang River Naval Battle
Originally built as The Hall of Loyalty in 1884, the memorial hall has
an extensive display of artifacts, documents, and photos, as well as the
martyr memorial and the mausoleum.
On the peak of Maxian, behind the museum, you¡¯ll find the old Plum Garden
Prison, the British Consulate Annex, and the Mercy Hospital (which has
been restored by the American Chinese who owns the hill). I suspect the
hospital was used for the consulate officials who went crazy at Pagoda
Island! One writer said it was rare to find ¡°consular officials who did
not go mad or become depressed during their posting at this isolated treaty
port.¡± And I could see why they did. A local said to me, ¡°Mawei Shipyard
is absolutely fascinating. You should see it! But foreigners aren¡¯t allowed
It would get to me too!
Luoxing Pagoda. Mawei¡¯s great landmark is the Southern Song
Dynasty Luoxing (Falling Star) Pagoda, built by Lady Liu Qiniang. This
seven-story, 31.5m high octagonal granite pagoda has been a mariner¡¯s
landmark for centuries, and even the great explorer Zhenghe drew it into
his navigational charts. During the Ming Dynasty, Europeans gave Luoxing
the highly imaginative English name of ¡°China Pagoda.¡±
Drum Hill To the east of Fuzhou, on the northern bank of the
Min River and up the road from the statue of Yan Fu ??the great philosopher
and translator, is Yonggyuan Temple, considered Fujian¡¯s most important
temple. The 3,350 meter hill is named after the huge, flat drum-like rock
on the peak.
History (birthplace of Chinese Maritime Industry)
Island (famous "China
Pagoda," Sino-French Battle, etc.)
Haunted Nantai Island Tour (Includes old Consulates, Rotary
Club, haunted churches...)
of Fuzhou: 3 Wards & 7 Streets, Li Family House, Banyan City,
Yushan Hill and White Pagoda, Clay People, etc.
Valley of Yongtai (Fujian's Best Kept Secret)
Cuisine (Buddha Jumps the Wall Soup, Pounded Pork, Fish Balls)
was also spelled Foochow, Fuh-chau, Fuhchau, etc.
Fujian Sites Fujian
Foto Album Xiamen
by Scott Ballantyne
Last Updated: May 2007
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