Hukuang Railway Bonds of 1911

By Huang, Manman | Financial History, Fall 2013 | Go to article overview

Hukuang Railway Bonds of 1911


Huang, Manman, Financial History


As an intern working with the Museum's collections, a document from the Hukuang Railways Sinking Fund Gold Loan of 1911, or the "Hukuang Bond," has become one of my favorites. The rich history behind this document impacted both China and the United States.

The last imperial Chinese government in the Qing (Manchu) Dynasty issued the Hukuang Bond. Just prior to the dynasty's collapse, it issued millions of dollars' worth of railway bonds, including the $6 million Hukuang Loan in 1911. The certificate is larger than most other bond documents, measuring 20x16 inches, and its terms are framed by a complex pattern to prevent counterfeiting. The bond was designed by Waterlow & Sons, a major London printer of securities and financial documents, and it features a locomotive vignette.

The Hukuang Railways consisted of two routes, the Canton-Hankou Railway and the Sichuan-Hankou Railway, which covered a total distance of approximately 2,545 miles. It was one of the country's most complicated railways and united central China with its coasts.

The Hukuang Bond was ordered by the Minister of Post and Communications, Sheng Hsuanhuai, on May 9, 1911, and was part of the nationalization of all locallycontrolled railway projects. On May 20, the Minister signed the loan agreement with the four-nation Banking Consortium and pledged the rights to operate the railroads. Initially in 1909, the credit was to be underwritten by a consortium of French, German and British banks, and by 1911 the United States had joined the consortium too. The four countries were to share equally in the £6 million bond issue of the Hukuang Railways. US participation in the bond issue was part of President William Howard Taft's policy of "dollar diplomacy," which began at the start of the 20th century.

On the Hukuang Bond, below the Chinese Minister's signature, are the underwriting American banks: J.P. Morgan and Co., Kuhn, Loeb and Co., the First National Bank of the City of New York and the National City Bank of New York. This bond certificate marks the earliest business activities of these banks in China and predates the opening of their first regional offices there.

Foreign participation in this issue caused an extremely vocal reaction by the Chinese in 1911, and a group called the Railway Rights Protection Movement was organized to protest the imperial government's negotiations with foreign banks. The most severe disturbance was in Chengdu, Sichuan. As a historian describes, "the outraged Szechuanese groups protested that the government intended to sell Szechuan to the foreigners. The local ruling class [of merchants, gentry and landowners] mobilized students, workers and peasants into their 'patriotic' protest." All levels of society had banded together against the government, and the movement was well-organized.

When the Qing government transferred the army from Hubei to Sichuan province in order to suppress the protests, the military forces in Hubei were weakened. This enabled a new army of revolutionaries to stage a coup, first arising in Wuchuang, Hubei, against the central officials. This event, called the Wuchuang Uprising, ended the Qing Dynasty. Ten years later, the British Minister of Peking, J.N. Jordan, declared the Hukuang Railway loan agreement "was the proximate cause of the downfall of the Dynasty."

At the time of the uprising, the imperial government often frustrated the Chinese populace. Prior to 1911, the late Qing Dynasty had a number of patriotic reform efforts; some resulted in violence and disaster, including the Boxer Rebellion (1899-1901). The Hukuang Bond was only the latest fuse igniting the fundamental push towards revolution and the overthrow of the Qing government.

As a result of the revolution, the government of the Republic of China (1912-1928) and Chiang Kai-shek's Nationalist Republic of China (POC) government (1927-1948) came to power, but struggled to fund the railroad expansion. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Hukuang Railway Bonds of 1911
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

    Already a member? Log in now.