The Foochow Missionaries, 1847-1880 0674307356, 9780674307353

This detailed study investigates the early decades (1847-1880) of Protestant missionary work in one of the important pro

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The Foochow Missionaries, 1847-1880
 0674307356, 9780674307353

Table of contents :
I. "White For the Harvest" The Arrival of the Missionaries in Foochow
II "Imperious Gait and High Heads" Chinese Response to the Arrival of the Missionaries
III. "The Scribes and the Pharisees of China" The Struggle to Maintain the Work in Foochow, 1851-1860
IV. Missionary Labors and Results in the 1850s
V. "This Obdurate City" Work in Foochow and Nantai, 1860-1880
VI. "Beyond Our Best Expectations" Success and Trouble in the Outstations, 1860-1880
VII. Lo-yüan, Yen-p'ing, and the "Poison Scare" of 1871
VIII. The Wu-shih-shan Incident of 1878
Appendix I. Missionaries in Foochow, 1847-1880
Appendix II. Persecutions in the Outstations of the Foochow Missions, 1860-1880

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1847 - 1880


by Ellsworth C. Carlson

Published by East Asian Research Center Harvard University

Distributed by Harvard University Press Cambridge, Mass. 1974

Copyright, 1974, by The President and Fellows of Harvard College

The East Asian Research Center at Harvard University administers research projects designed to further scholarly understanding of China, Japan, Korea, Vietnam, Inner Asia, and adjacent areas. These studies have been assisted by grants from the Ford Foundation.

Library of Congress No. 72-97832 SBN 674-30733-6

FOREWORD Ellsworth Carlson's interest in nineteenth-century missionaries in China came to him naturally: not only is he an historian of China trained at Harvard to use the nineteenth-century documents; he was also an Oberlin Representative who taught in China for four years after his graduation in 1939. Since the early part of the century, the Oberlin Representatives have had a long and worthy record as modern-day successors to the missionary tradition. As volunteers sponsored by the student body, they have formed one of the enduring links between American and Chinese education. Assigned at first to the Ming Hsien Middle School in Shansi, they represented the OberlinShansi Memorial Association that was set up at Oberlin to commemorate the missionary martyrs of 1900 in that province. Mr. Carlson carried on this representative activity during World War II at Chin-t' ang, Szechuan, the school's wartime refuge, and then spent another year in Chungking as the administrative secretary of the National Student Relief Commission. Returning to the United States before the end of the war, he put his China background to use in the war effort under the Office of Strategic Services, and then in 1945-1947 under the Department of State as a country specialist. With this intimate knowledge of student life in wartime China and of American efforts there, Ellsworth Carlson entered Harvard's new Regional Studies program on China in 1947 and took his M.A. in 1949. His Harvard doctoral dissertation of 1952 in the History Department was a study of the intricate administrative and diplomatic history of China's first modern mining enterprise, The Kaiping Mines ( 1877-1912). It was published by the East Asian Research Center in 1957. To take advantage of further Chinese documentation, an expanded second edition was published in 1971. In the course of this long-continued research and his further work on the Foochow missionaries, Dr. Carlson has spent further years in East Asia as a Fulbright Fellow at the University of the Philippines in 1956-57, and in Taiwan in 1962, and later with a Fulbright-Hayes Faculty Award at Hong Kong in 1967-68. Meanwhile at Oberlin his original offering of two Asian courses has grown into a program staffed by eight full-time specialists.

Dr. Carlson's career as a teacher of Chinese history at Oberlin has not only been paralleled by his continuing interest in research over the years, but has also been accompanied by an increasing involvement in administration, which brought him into the post of Provost in 1969, and has made him more recently the Acting President of his alma mater. East Asian Research Center




"White For the Harvest" The Arrival of the Missionaries in Foochow


"Imperious Gait and High Heads" Chinese Response to the Arrival of the Missionaries



"The Scribes and the Pharisees of China" The Struggle to Maintain the Work in Foochow, 1851-1860



Missionary Labors and Results in the 1850s



"This Obdurate City" Work in Foochow and Nantai, 1860-1880



"Beyond Our Best Expectations" Success and Trouble in the Outstations, 1860-1880



Lo-yuan, Yen-p'ing, and the "Poison Scare" of 1871


VIII. The Wu-shih-shan Incident of 1878


Appendix I.

Missionaries in Foochow, 1847-1880


Appendix II.

Persecutions in the Outstations of the Foochow Missions, 18 60-1880


Notes Bibliography Glossary Index

177 243 253 255

Chapter I "WHITE FOR THE HARVEST" THE ARRIVAL OF THE MISSIONARIES IN FOOCHOW The missionary movement in China in the nineteenth century assumed sweeping proportions and extended to wide areas not directly reached by other agents of the Western impact. Protestant missionaries openly challenged central Chinese values and institutions. Although their major effort was evangelistic, they were an important channel of Western influence by their presence in thousands of Chinese communities and through the beginnings of educational and medical work. China's response to the West was in large part a response to the presence and activity of the missionaries. Much of this response was hostile. During the last half of the nineteenth century hundreds of "missionary cases" (chiao-an) occurred, ranging in seriousness from minor obstructions of the missionaries' work to serious destruction of property and life by infuriated mobs. Hostility to missionaries contributed to a deeply rooted antiforeignism, which must be regarded as one of the more persistent and important strands of the Chinese response to the West. This antiforeignism exploded in the Boxer Rebellion of 1900 and provided soil for the growth of Chinese nationalism in the twentieth century. What were the missionaries attempting to accomplish? How did they go about it? What was their manner of life? What were the relationships between them and the Chinese communities in which they worked? What obstacles did they encounter? What were their moods and their attitudes toward China? In sum, what happened when missionaries came to China and lived and worked there? The present study centers on Foochow, a city located in the southeast coastal province of Fukien, which was one of the early centers of Protestant missionary work. It is located on the delta of the Min River, about twenty-five miles from the coast, nine miles from Pagoda Anchorage, which could be reached by ocean-going vessels. Westerners who came there marveled at the natural beauty of its setting. Stephen Johnson, who arrived in 184 7, wrote:


The river Min, on the north side of which the main part of the city lies, runs between two lofty ridges of mountains, which extend from a long distance above the city to its entrance into the ocean, their bases, most of the way, reaching even to the margin of this noble stream. The scenery of the Hudson is confessedly beautiful and sublime; but in point of beauty, grandeur and sublimity, that of the Min is, in my opinion, greatly superior. At many points these mountains are improved nearly to their summits, the cultivated spots being vast gardens with terraces rising one above another, almost to the region of the clouds. 1 Estimates of the size of the city vary, but it would probably be safe to assume that when the Protestant missionaries started to arrive in 184 7 there were from six to seven hundred thousand people in the walled city and its suburbs. A large part of the population lived in Nantai, the suburb that filled the area between the walled city and the river, three miles to the south. 2 Because of its location Foochow had long been a commercial center. The Min, according to Cressey, is the natural gateway to interior Fukien and western Kiangsi, 3 and small river craft went up the river from Foochow. It was a center of coastal trade and of trade between mainland China and Taiwan and the Ryukyu Islands. The Portuguese and the Dutch tried to establish trading relations with Foochow in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. Between 1685 and 1759 "the English and other European companies tried out the market in a fitful manner." 4 Several Catholic orders had undertaken missionary work in Fukien beginning in the seventeenth century. Since the 1820s, Western opium ships had done business outside of Foochow. After the Opium War, Foochow was one of the five ports opened to trade under the provisions of the Treaty of Nanking. A city which was accessible to traders was again accessible to the missionary. 5 Despite its accessibility, however, Foochow remained a thoroughly Chinese city. It was not, like Shanghai, largely a product of the Western impact on China. After 1760 legal trade with the Western powers was confined to Canton, and the illegal opium trade did not produce a resident Western community in Foochow. In the eighteenth century Catholic missionary activity in Foochow lost most of its momentum because the missionaries were severely persecuted. Even after Foochow was officially opened to foreign trade in 1844, trade was slow in developing, and it was not until after 1853 that there was any rapid growth of a foreign trading community there. 6


Foochow was a Chinese administrative center, serving as the provincial capital as well as the headquarters of the governor-general of Fukien and Chekiang. The Manchus maintained a garrison of bannermen there. The city was also a traditional center of learning. It was the site of the annual examinations for the first (hsiu-ts'ai) degree and of examinations, held twice in five years, for the second (chil-jen) degree. Within the walled city large numbers of men of property and learning resided; they were referred to by the missionaries as the "literati" or the "gentry." The history of missionary work in Foochow is, accordingly, the story of interaction between representatives of Western religion and culture, on the one hand, and a thoroughly Chinese environment on the other. When the Protestant missionaries began to settle in Foochow in January 184 7, about two and one-half years had elapsed since the opening of the port by George Tradescent Lay in June 1844. The opening of the port had not come about without difficulty, and had the missionaries been less confident that the Lord was on their side, they might have taken the events of 1844 as a warning of trouble ahead. The difficulties encountered in opening Foochow had their origins in strong opposition on the Chinese side to the inclusion of Foochow among the cities to be opened to trade. As a matter of fact an imperial edict had forbidden the inclusion of Foochow. There was special opposition to the idea that the foreigners should have the right to reside within the walled city. When the Foochow gentry petitioned against permitting the . foreigners to live within the walls, the Chinese officials tried to persuade Lay to stay in the suburbs. Lay insisted on his right to live in the city, however, and he finally established himself in a temple on Wu-shih-shan (Black Stone Hill). In 1845 the situation became tense again when a consular interpreter was stoned while walking on the city wall. In demanding punishment of the culprits, the British threatened to bring in a gunboat. The immediate difficulty subsided fairly quickly, and a visitor to Foochow at the end of 1845 reported that relations between the consulate and the Chinese authorities had become friendly and that there had been a growth of Chinese respect for foreigners. Time was to show, however, that the people of Foochow were not convinced that the foreigners should be allowed to live on Wu-shih-shan or elsewhere within the walled city. 7


Although the first treaty settlement of 1842-1844 opened the five ports to foreign residence, they did not contain any specific rights with respect to Christianity and missionary activity. Between 1844 and 1846, however, several imperial edicts granted toleration to Christianity and the right to build churches in the open ports. 8 Legally speaking, the door was open for the missionaries to enter Foochow. The early nineteenth century was a time of great strength and enthusiasm in the Protestant churches of Europe and America. In England, the evangelical movement which had produced the Wesleys in the eighteenth century had not yet spent itself, and in America the "Second Great Awakening" was underway in the Protestant churches. During these years Protestantism placed great stress on the personal salvation available to those with faith in the atoning power of Christ's sacrifice. It was a time of strongly felt conversion experiences; great preachers preached the word powerfully and with conviction. 9 One of the major consequences of religious revival was the launching and rapid growth of Protestant foreign missionary societies. So great was the nineteenth-century missionary effort that Latourette had referred to it as "The Great Century" in the history of the expansion of Christianity .10 Protestant missionary work in Foochow was undertaken by three missionary societies: the American Board of Commissioners for Foreign Missions, the Northern Methodists, and the Church Missionary Society. The American Board, founded in 1810, was originally non-denominational, but as other denominations withdrew to found their own societies, it became the foreign missionary society of the Congregational Churches. The Church Missionary Society (CMS) was an agency of the Church of England. What took place in Foochow be~ween 1847 and 1881, then, was an encounter between a very Chinese city and Western Protestantism at the peak of its missionary zeal. It was no wonder that the impact produced sparks. Although Protestant missionaries did not actually begin to take up residence in Foochow until 184 7, the field had been explored in earlier years. Karl Friedrich August Giitzlaff, a Prussian sent to Asia by the Netherlands Missionary Society, visited Foochow in 183 2 with Captain Lindsay of the British ship Lord Amherst. While Lindsay looked into prospects for trade and sold some of his cargo, Giitzlaff distributed Christian tracts "to eager and


grateful readers" and engaged in some medical practice. Since the city was not open to trade or missionaries, the foreign visitors did not receive a very cordial reception from the Foochow officials, but Gutzlaff reported that the common people were friendly .11 In December 1845 and January 1846, about a year and a half after Foochow had been officially opened, the Reverend Mr. George Smith visited the place in the course of his explorations up the coast from Hong Kong in behalf of the Church Missionary Society. Smith reported that the hostility associated with the opening of the port had subsided and that generally he encountered "friendly dispositions." He urged strongly that some Protestant missionary society should begin work at Foochow. 12 On January 2, 1847, the Reverend Mr. Stephen Johnson, missionary of the American Board of Commissioners for Foreign Missions, who had come up the coast on an opium ship, ascended the Min River to Foochow. Before coming to China, Johnson had worked for twelve years in Bangkok among Chinese who had come to that city from Amoy. With the opening of China, the American Board asked Johnson and Mr. and Mrs. L.B. Peet, who had been in Bangkok for six years, to go to China. 13 Just which of the newly opened ports would be their location was still undecided when they arrived at Canton from Bangkok. The main possibilities were Amoy, where the American Board had already commenced work, and Foochow. Johnson and the Peets were attracted to Amoy by the fact that they had already studied the Amoy dialect. Foochow, farther up the coast, was challenging because no Protestant missionaries had yet settled there. Hence, when Johnson first arrived at Foochow, it was not with a clear intention of settling down, but rather, to use his words, "with a view of exploring the field, and obtaining further data for the settlement of the question whether or not it is our duty there to commence missionary operations." 14 On arriving in Foochow, Johnson went to the residence of the British consul, R. B. Jackson, for whom he had letters, and shortly afterward he moved into the home of William Roper, captain of an opium ship, with whom he had become acquainted on the trip up from Canton. Johnson had qualms about living in such proximity to the opium trade, but he explained to the Board that apart from the British consul, who had apparently not offered him


quarters, and a Spanish Catholic priest, whom he had not met, the only foreigners in Foochow were in the opium business. "I am peculiarly circumstanced," he wrote, "and I ... need wisdom and grace from above to guide me and preserve me from evil." 15 By the end of his first week in Foochow, Johnson felt called to remain and to urge others to join him there. I feel that this place in view of its magnitude and great importance as a missionary field must not be deserted, and I would cling to the spot, if only by that means I might be able to make a more impressive appeal to Christians in America on its behalf, and be the humble instrument of introducing other laborers into this great field apparently white for the harvest. 16 What was it that led Smith and Johnson, others who would soon arrive, and the mission boards in England and America to decide that Foochow was an appropriate place for mission work? For the most part for the same reason that took missionaries to Canton, the Hawaiian Islands, India, and all the other mission fields: the desire to make known the means of salvation, to bring about the conversion of lost souls. George Smith wrote of his feelings as he stood on Wu-shih-shan, the site of the British consulate, and looked out over the city of Foochow: It was no common trial ... to my mind, as I gazed from the summit of this hill on the populous city below to reflect, that here, over half a million of immortal souls, spell-bound by idolatry or atheism, in the capital of one of the largest provinces of the empire, the seat of a viceroy having two provinces under his jurisdiction, should nevertheless be destitute of a single Missionary labourer from Protestant lands, and that no effort should yet have been made to convey to them the inestimable blessings of the Gospel. It was a comfort to remember, in such a spot, that even China formed part of the purchased inheritance of Christ, and that her pagan population would hereafter become subjects of the kingdom of God. 17 The task was urgent because the people of Foochow were "hurrying ... to a wretched eternity." 18 Justus Doolittle, who came out in 1850, spoke of China's "perishing millions, who are hastening to idolatrous graves at the rate of thirty-two thousand every day." 19


One of the factors which made Foochow most attractive to Smith, Johnson, and others was the large population of the city and its vicinity. Next to Canton it was the largest of the treaty ports, containing, the missionaries believed, about 600,000 people. The fact that it was a provincial city seemed to make it even more eligible for missionary attention. It is the centre of influence for political and governmental purposes, known and felt by the millions of the province of which it is the capital. Why may it not become, like Rome to the empire, the centre of Christian influences for the salvation of souls to the teeming multitudes of the great city and its dependencies? 20 Many other arguments were used to support the conclusion that Foochow should be "occupied" by Protestant missions. The people seemed friendly. It seemed possible to obtain the use of buildings and land. Foochow, it was argued, was the healthiest of the treaty ports. The fact that trade was slow in developing was regarded as an advantage. "Commerce, unrestrained by Christian principles, has hardly begun to produce its unhallowed effects. " 21 Johnson had the impression that quite a large proportion of the population was literate and would, therefore, be able to read Christian literature. Even the beauty of the country around "impressed the mind with God's goodness and power." 22 So great was his enthusiasm for the favorable prospects at Foochow that Johnson exclaimed: May we not expect that the proud disciples of Confucius will yet humbly learn of Jesus, and become the zealous and devoted heralds of his gospel to their dying countrymen? Nothing is impossible with God. 23 For eight months Johnson, who was a widower when he came to China, was the only Protestant missionary in Foochow. Reinforcements did not come until September. In the meantime, judging from his letters to the American Board, Johnson entered upon his life and work in Foochow hopefully and happily. He wrote of "an unusual measure of health and cheerfulness of spirit, above what I have enjoyed for many years past." 24 As a pioneer missionary, he had to solve the elementary problems of living in a strange place. Staying with the captain of an opium ship was a matter of some embarrassment, and finding suitable living quarters was urgent. In this task, Johnson encountered much less difficulty than did later arrivals. He quickly rented, for eighty dollars per year, what he described as a "comfortable


dwelling sufficiently retired though in the midst of crowded populations," and he moved in on February 13, 1847. 25 The house was located on Chung-chou ("middle island"), a densely populated island in the Min River, about three miles south of the Foochow city wall. Chung-chou was about a third of a mile long and a quarter of a mile wide and was connected with the south and north banks of the river by a long stone bridge. It was on the main road coming from the south into Foochow, and at the center of the harbor area. Johnson reported that the island was a healthy spot and that "no other point is central to perhaps a larger population, at least that can now be secured." 26 His new neighbors seemed to be quite friendly. I feel as safe, both by day and night as I should do in any of the large cities of my native land. The people of this city and vicinity are rather timid than otherwise, and careful not to give umbrage to the foreign resident. 27 "Respectable Chinese," including "two inferior magistrates," called frequently "for books and perhaps more generally to gratify curiosity." 28 A worldly problem of some urgency was getting funds. There was no bank handling foreign exchange in Foochow; money would have to be sent from Hong Kong. At first Johnson got funds through Captain Roper, the opium trader with whom he lived. Later he reported that Consul Jackson had offered to supply him with money, "on the condition of the amount drawn by me being repaid to his agents in Hong Kong, which will relieve me from such unpleasant embarrassment." 29 The knowledge of the Amoy dialect and the smattering of Mandarin that Johnson had acquired in Bangkok were not very useful to him in Foochow, and he had no doubt that, for some time to come, his most important task would be the learning of the local Foochow dialect, "without a good knowledge of which we can hope to do them little good either in a temporal or spiritual respect." 30 He quickly began work with a teacher, a man of fiftyfour, who had "quick perception" and "extensive information" and was, apparently, from a gentry family. Johnson was impressed with the fact that the teacher lived together with sixty of his relatives in a single household. 31 While recognizing that command of the Foochow dialect was essential to effective missionary work, Johnson eonsidered the preaching of the gospel too urgent a matter to be postponed completely until he could do it with


optimum effieiency. When he was "providentially" present at his teacher's home on the occasion of a wedding, he used the opportunity to "unfold to them the gospel plan of salvation." Visits to his own home by the curious and those asking for books were used "to some extent to make known the gospel." About March he began conducting family worship in the Foochow dialect in his home, and by summer he was conducting public worship both in the morning and afternoon of the Sabbath; those in attendance were mainly people in his employ, his teacher and servants. 32 The first eight months of Protestant missionary work in Foochow, when Johnson was alone, passed without any serious difficulty. A single man living outside the city walls and engaged mainly in quiet language study did not provoke controversy, hostility, or apprehension. Beginning in September 1847, however, reinforcements began to arrive, and they continued to arrive until by 1851 the missionaries, including wives, numbered twenty-seven. With the appearance of a large contingent of missionary workers, relations between the mission and the Chinese community inevitably changed. The L. B. Peets arrived in the summer of 1847. They were followed on May 7, 1848 by two couples and a bachelor: Caleb C. and Harriet F. Baldwin, Seneca and Mrs. Cummings, and William L. Richards. 33 Baldwin was the son of a Presbyterian elder; Cummings had attended Lane and Union Seminaries; 34 and Richards was the son of missionaries in the Sandwich Islands. Later, in 1849, Stephen Johnson married a missionary teacher in the Chu-san islands who returned to Foochow with him. The new Mrs. Johnson, a Swedish woman, had come to China under the auspices of the London Ladies' Association for the Education of Heathen Females in the East. Johnson asked the American Board to repay to the London association the cost of his wife's outfit and passage from Europe to China; with this request went the comforting thought that "a journey home for the sake of obtaining a wife would have been much more expensive both as to time and money." 35 Justus Doolittle and his wife Sophia arrived in May 1850. Doolittle had graduated from Hamilton College in 1846 and came to China immediately after completing his theological studies. 36 Foochow was the first place where American Methodists undertook foreign missionary work. Although the Methodist mission in Foochow was a

10 little slower than the American Board in getting started, it was to become the largest and, in importan t ways, the most successful of the missions there. The first arrivals, on September 6, 1847, were Moses and Jane White, and Judson Dwight Collins. White had been a student at Wesleyan and had studied theology at Yale, while also doing some work in medicine. Mrs. White was a graduate of the Oneida Conference Seminary at Cazenovia, New York. Collins had graduated from the University of Michigan. 37 Collins and the Whites had trouble getting transport ation from Hong Kong to Foochow and finally had to charter a Portuguese lorcha, which was armed in order to cope with pirates; the Peets joined them at Amoy for the remainder of the journey to Foochow. 38 The following spring Mr. and Mrs. Henry Hickok and R. S. Maclay joined the Methodists. Hickok came out as superinte ndent of the Foochow mission, having been instructed by Bishop L. L. Hamline, "Your office requires you to take charge of all the missionaries, and direct them when, where, and how to labor." 39 After Hickok's departure from the field in 1849, Collins served as superinte ndent for a time. 40 Maclay, who was to play an essentially importan t role in the development of the mission and was then to take the lead in the establishment of Methodism in Japan, was appointed superinte ndent in March 1852. 41 The role of the superinte ndent was to be a source of tension and difficulty in the mission. 42 In 1850, in response to a request from Maclay, the board at home agreed to send a Miss Henrietta Sperry to China to marry him. Miss Sperry's coming and Maclay's trip to Hong Kong to meet her were apparently the subjects of some merrimen t among the missionaries. Elihu Doty, American Board missionary at Amoy, wrote to White, whose wife had died shortly after arriving in Foochow and who was anxious to remarry, that "I fear she will be caught before she arrives and will come married ... for Brother Maclay won't sleep at his observing post down below yonder." 43 There followed, in 1851, the arrival of Mr. and Mrs. James Colder, Dr. and Mrs. Isaac W. Wiley, M.D., and Miss Mary Seely. Miss Seely had been a close friend and classmate of Mrs. Moses C. White. Five days after arriving in Foochow, Miss Seely became White's second wife. 44 Passing mention should be made of the abortive effort of the Lutheran Church Missionary Society of Sweden to begin work in Foochow in 1850.


The first of two Swedish missionaries, C. J. Fast, arrived in January 1850, and he was joined by A. Elquist later in the year. Soon after the two Swedish missionaries had finally found a place to live and work after a great deal of difficulty, Fast was killed by pirates when he was coming up the river after getting money from an opium vessel. Elquist left the field soon afterward. 45 The Foochow mission of the Church Missionary Society, which was to have success and trouble out of proportion to its size, dates from May 1850, when R. D. Jackson and W. Welton, a doctor, arrived on the same chartered lorcha that brought the Doolittles of the American Board. Peet wrote a few days later that "our English brethren of the Episcopal Church are men of an excellent spirit." 46 To say that twenty-seven missionaries and missionary wives arrived in Foochow between the beginning of 1847 and the end of 1851 could give a misleading impression of the size of the missionary force. Whether or not the early missionaries were correct in their oft-repeated view that the Foochow climate was healthful, the fact is that the missionaries had serious health problems, and casualties were heavy. 47 By the end of 1853, only fifteen of the twenty-seven who had arrived between 1847 and 1851 remained in the field; the rest had either died or left. Death and sickness not only took people from the field, but also affected the moods and effectiveness of those who carried on. 48 Questions of life and death were sometimes a preoccupation. Hickok remarked, as he was leaving Foochow after the deaths of several missionaries, that 49 "missionaries in China are made to feel how near they are to eternity." Mr. and Mrs. Peet made arrangements for the care of their children in the event of their death. 50 The last days and moments of the dying missionaries were described in detail in letters home. There was concern that death should be peaceful, even joyous, and in contrast with the woe and wailing that accompanied it among the Chinese. 51 Dr. Wiley, whose own wife had died, published a volume entitled Mission Cemetery and the Fallen Missionaries of Fuh Chau. 52 Since sickness and death were constantly with them, it is not surprising that the missionaries were concerned about the availability of medical care53 and that they should try to provide themselves

12 with housing that would not only be well located in relation to their work but also favorable to healthy living. After the death of the first Mrs. White, and with the prospect that Mr. and Mrs. Hickok might have to leave Foochow, Mr. C. Pitman of the Methodist Board in New York became quite concerned about the fact that the Methodists had three single men in Foochow, White, Collins, and Maclay. Pitman wrote several letters to Foochow on the "delicate question" of whether the "brethren" would be "comfortab le, without a female to superintend household affairs." He wondered whether it would be advisable to send out "two single ladies, provided suitable ones can be obtained." In another letter he suggested that if the men themselves could "negotiate that matter by letter with any of your acquaintances, and then request us to send them out the question will assume quite a different form." It also occurred to him that in the "providenc e of God" it might become advisable to send out young ladies as missionary teachers; in such a case, he said, they could make their own choice. One problem in connection with this latter scheme was the question of whether potential teachers would be told in advance of the expectation or hope that they would become missionaries' wives. Although he suggested that the missionaries should act "in strict accordance with providential openings," it seemed that Pitman was quite willing to assist Providence. 54 One of the most pressing and time-consuming tasks faced by the missionaries as they arrived at Foochow during these early years was that of providing themselves with suitable housing in reasonable proximity to the sections of Foochow where they wanted to work. The problem was not simply one of locating existing houses and renting them. At the very least the missionaries considered it necessary to make substantial changes in Chinese houses that were offered for rent. 55 In the long run, they wanted to build Western-style houses within their own compounds. This.necessitated the acquisition of suitable sites, and required decisions as to the best locations for mission work; and it also involved no end of problems with potential neighbors and officials. During the early months missionary life and work at Foochow centered mainly on the island of Chung-chou, where Johnson had located. With the arrival of new missionaries, additional properties were acquired on the island.

13 The men spent a large part of their time planning and supervising the remodeling of old houses and the building of new ones. Their wives learned how to run households in a Chinese environment, making use of Chinese cooks, houseboys, and other servants. 56 For a time the American Board and Methodist missionaries were reconciled to making Chung-chou their main place of residence and work. The island itself was crowded with people in need of salvation. Since it was on the main thoroughfare leading south from Foochow, the hope was that people passing by would be drawn to places of Christian instruction and worship. Before very long, however, the missionaries became more and more attracted to other possible-and, as it turned out, impossible-locations. Both the desire to be effective in their missionary work and closely related considerations of personal health and well-being contributed to the interest in other locations. 57 The missionaries were strongly drawn to the walled city itself, about three miles north of the Min River. They were sure that it was important to preach the gospel in this main center of Chinese culture and administration. During these early years, the missionaries tried repeatedly to get residence and chapel sites within the city. All but one of these efforts failed. Now and then the missionaries would find someone who was willing to rent to them, but the neighbors or the officials would prevent them from getting the property. 58 Not long after his arrival Collins rented a room in a city temple from the priests; but the officials intervened, threatening to punish the priests, and Collins had to take back the advance rent he had paid. 59 A few days later he wrote that "a messenger from the Mandarins informs us that they do not wish us to live inside the city as they fear we will get hurt there by the pe6ple. " 60 During an interview with an official in December 1847, Collins was told that the emperor did not know that the British consular officials were residing inside the city. 61 In 1849 the Min-hsien magistrate prevented Peet from renting a room in a temple for use as a chapel. 62 The first moves of the missionaries away from Chung-chou were in the opposite direction from the walled city. In 1849 and 1850 Johnson and Cummings of the American Board acquired properties in what was known as the Ato suburb to the south of the river; Johnson acquired a chapel there, and Cummings a house. 63 For a time the Chinese authorities resisted the efforts


of the missionaries to acquire land or buildings in the large Nantai suburb which lay between the river and the walled city. 64 The American Board improved its situation in August 1850 with the acquisition of property at P'u-nai-shan ( or Ponasang as the missionaries called it in the local dialect), a low hill in Nantai, about half way between the river and the city walls. The success in obtaining land there was the outcome of a strenuous effort to get a site in Nantai. A month earlier the missionaries thought they had acquired an attractive location, only to have to give it up when a neighbor complained (and was supported by the officials in the matter) that the building of foreign houses on the site would have an undesirable effect on a family graveyard. 65 This was one of the earlier encounters, many more of which would follow, withfeng-shui, which is translated literally as "wind and water," but is often referred to by Westerners as "geomancy." The Chinese believer infeng-shui assumed that certain natural forces operated over the landscape with either beneficial or harmful influence on the living and the dead. In order to get these natural forces to operate beneficially, buildings had to have a proper relationship with the landscape. It was hard for Chinese believers infeng-shui to see how foreign buildings, usually higher than surrounding Chinese buildings, could have anything but a harmful effect. There was also some difficulty in the acquisition of the Ponasang site. Crowds of boys threatened and threw missiles at Doolittle and Peet as they tried to take possession. This time, however, the magistrate assisted the missionaries. He issued a proclamation, informing the populace that the missionaries had the right to rent land outside of the city, that they had done so quite properly, and that there should be no disturbance. 66 Baldwin did not think that relations with the neighbors had been disturbed very much. "The mission was for the most part passive in the matter, for the government had undertaken to settle difficulties. Hence the contest was between it and the people." 67 Having obtained the site, the mission proceeded to build two foreign-style, two-storied houses, whose first occupants were the Johnsons and the Doolittles. With the opening of the Foochow tea trade in 1853, the mission gradually sold its Chung-chou houses to foreign merchants, and Ponasang became the American Board's mission center. 68


Meanwhile the Methodists, who had been unsuccessful in their efforts to move north into Nantai, had moved south of the river. The property which they acquired in 1848 was on a ridge called Keangsang ( or Mirror Hill), above the densely populated river bank. Hickok spoke of the site as "one of the finest and healthiest positions in all this vicinity." 69 The first Methodist residences built on Mirror Hill were for Maclay and Collins; the Wileys took over the Collins house in 18 51. By that time the mission had decided that it would be advantageous to have the homes of the missionaries located together where social and religious intercourse could more easily be carried out. 70 As will be seen, however, efforts to increase the mission's holdings on Mirror Hill would lead to considerable difficulty. The missions were not allowed to come into full ownership of land. This was brought home to them quite clearly in connection with the acquisition ofland for the mission cemetery. The missionaries thought they had purchased a cemetery site, but when they tried to get an official stamp on the deed, the officers told them that they could not buy land. It was agreed, however, that they could have a "perpetual lease" of the ground, and such an arrangement was worked out. Most of the land on which the missions built houses was held on perpetual lease. 71 Another main preoccupation of the missionaries was the learning of the language. In October 1848 Hickok reported that "as far as our health and circumstances would permit, we have made the study of the language our chief pursuit, and to it the brethren have given the best of their strength." 72 Ordinarily the missionaries began their study of the Foochow colloquial within a few days after their arrival, and for many of them learning the language was a never-ending task. 73 The early Foochow missionaries had no question about whether they had to learn Chinese. In the 1840s there were very few Chinese in Foochow who knew any English, and the missionaries were not interested in teaching it. If they were to make Christianity known to the people of Foochow, they would have to do so in Chinese. The most immediate need was for ability in speaking the language, but the realization that it would be tremendously helpful to be able to read and write it was not slow in coming. The written language was seen to be a very important means of spreading the "gospel truth" in a culture which had a reverence for the written word. 74

16 Because of the priority given to the spoken language, as well as the fact that the teachers employed by the missionaries did not know English, methods of study and instruction had much in common with modern procedures. Instruction began with the spoken word, and was done by the direct method. At first, meanings of words had to be communicated by pointing and gestures. Then meanings of new words could be explained with words already learned. There was drill in the proper sounding of the eight tones of the Foochow dialect and in correct pronunciation. To aid their study of pronunciation, the missionaries made tables of initial and final sounds of Chinese words. As time went along they developed various other aids for the study and use of the language: character lists, vocabularies, dictionaries, and the like. 75 Their Chinese teachers played an important part in the life of the missionary community. Collins reported that his teacher arrived at eight in the morning and stayed until five in the afternoon. 76 The teachers served as interpreters, translators, and go-betweens, and they were a major source of information. The missionaries frequently dismissed them as they became dissatisfied with their work or as they discovered deficiencies of character. One teacher got in trouble when it was discovered that he had taken for himself a rather sizable slice of the money which the missions paid out for the cemetery site. 77 The question whether they should ask their teachers to kneel with them in prayer was a subject of controversy among some of the missionaries. 78 Study of the language involved the same ups and downs in the 1840s that it does in the twentieth century, with moments of satisfaction over progress alternating with moods of discouragement. 79 At times the missionaries found it difficult to keep at the task. One gets the impression, for example, that the many expeditions and activities that Collins described in his journal indicated not only broad interests but also a tendency to get bored with work on Chinese. 80 In his journal he wrote of having to be "on my guard against listlessness or inattention in the prosecution of Chinese studies." 81 Generally speaking, however, the missionaries' strong motivation kept them at work. It was inevitable that some of them would be more successful at language study than others. A major reason why Peet was not invited to return to Foochow after his furlough in 1871-1872 was the inadequacy of his command

17 of the language. 82 One of the missionaries quipped that a certain colleague could not have read a chapter in the Chinese text of one of the books of the Bible if his life depended on it. There was a tendency for the American Board missionaries to go farther with the written language and engage in more literary work than people under the other societies. 83 The attainment of sufficient fluency to enable one to preach in Chinese was a major goal. In speaking of his first sermon in Chinese, Cummings wrote, "I made it with a trembling heart in veiw of my imperfections in the language, and spoke with a stammering tongue. Yet my success was better than I had anticipated." 84

Chapter II "IMPERIOUS GAIT AND HIGH HEADS" CHINESE RESPONSE TO THE ARRIVAL OF THE MISSIONARIES The difficulties the missionaries had in acquiring housing sites imply that Foochow did not greet the newcomers with open arms. They were met with hostility from the moment of their arrival-even before they had a chance to make mistakes, even before the missionary presence could demonstrate differences between Chinese and Western cultures. The missionaries arriving in Foochow also met with frequent manifestations of friendliness, however-mixed, it would seem, with a good deal of curiosity. Shortly after his arrival, Johnson reported that the people seemed to be friendly to strangers. 1 Most of the missionary reports on their relations with Chinese written in 1847 were optimistic. Speaking of the early days at Foochow, White wrote: We spent hours every day receiving the people whose curiosity led them to visit us, or in going through the streets to learn the manners and habits of the people, and to pick up the spoken language. We were generally kindly received, though some rude fellows would cry out "Foreign Devils. " 2 In writing about calls of people of "different ranks" Mrs. White said: We always treat them to tea, give them tracts, or a portion of the Testament, let them have a peep through the spy glass, with which they are greatly delighted ... It is evident that I am "the elephant" with these good people, being the first foreign female ... they have ever seen. 3 Collins showed a "mandarin" who had arrived with six or eight attendants his microscope, spy glass, and pictures.4 Prior to 1850 relations with the officials were fairly satisfactory; the main disagreements had to do with the acquisition of property. In mid-1847 Johnson reported that several of the inferior magistrates had made friendly calls. 5 An official from Amoy, who had known the missionaries at that port, called on them during a visit to Foochow in the fall of 1847 and reported favorably concerning them to the governor-general at Foochow. 6 Collins made frequent references to visits to or from officials in his journal. 7 These visits were quite friendly; on one occasion he wrote:

19 Went to mandarin's this afternoon to talk about living in city. Met him just dismissing an honorable visitor. He received me politely, introduced me to his friend, who affectionately clasped my hand in both his, imitating as he supposed American salutation. He accompanied me into his house, seated me honorably, called an interpreter. 8 On another occasion he wrote of receiving a present of ducks, ham, and firecrackers from the mandarin; the gift was declined, but Collins did not say why. 9 In certain instances the· officials might restrain the missionaries from overstepping their rights. In January 1849, after Maclay and Collins had taken an unauthorized trip up the river, the authorities requested "that in the future they may be informed when any one wishes to take any long excursions, that they may furnish guards if needed; or refuse permission, if the distance is too great. " 10 Shortly thereafter, the authorities refused to allow Hickok to travel overland to Amoy. 11 On other occasions, however, they were very helpful. In the spring of 1848 when the first Mrs. White died, the officials assured the missionaries that they could use some land for her grave, even though final arrangements for the perpetual lease were still incomplete. 12 As the months and years went by, there continued to be reports of friendly or civil behavior on the part of Chinese with whom the missionaries came into contact. 13 But as the number of missionaries grew and as their contacts broadened, there were also reports of hostility. When Collins and White inquired about renting a house, the owner used the occasion to complain about aspects of the foreigners' demeanor, particularly their "imperious gait and high heads." 14 In 1848 Collins wrote of several incidents which seemed to reflect negative attitudes toward foreigners, ranging from discourtesy to clear hostility. In March of that year, as Collins and Peet were walking in the suburb south of the river, they had trouble with some Chinese boys, who struck them, kicked them, and threw things at them. Later in the year Collins was stoned while out walking. Other foreigners encountered similar trouble. In February a crowd, mostly boys, threw things at an American artist, who was visiting Foochow, and stole a case of his supplies. In

20 September a Mr. Parish, apparently a British consular employee, was stoned; the Chinese authorities promised to punish the offenders. 15 Missionary letters and reports in 1849 did not mention further incidents of this kind. This fact, plus the several reports of friendly behavior of the Chinese, suggest that as of 1849 the missionaries were probably more impressed with evidence of friendliness than with the existence of hostility. If this is true, then 1850 must clearly mark a turning point in the missionaries' sense of how they stood with the Chinese of Poochow. In that year there was a renewal of reports of petty incidents and irritations. On September 6 crowds of boys threatened and threw things at Peet and Doolittle when they tried to take possession of the property at Ponasang. 16 Collins reported that "I have ... had my hat several times thrown off and received various intended insults," and he complained that Foochow was as unmannerly as Canton. 17 The next year White was beaten up when he got in the way, apparently unintentionally, of an "idolatrous procession." 18 In October 1851 some "rude fellows" disturbed Maclay's efforts to conduct services. 19 Far more important then the incidents and irritations just described, however, was the effort by gentry and officials in 1850 to evict the CMS missionaries from the premises they had just occupied on Wu-shih-shan. Although the attempt failed and the missionaries were to stay on Wu-shih-shan for another twenty-eight years, the episode was important in a number of ways. It was a frightening manifestation of the strength of antiforeign or antimissionary feelings in Foochow, particularly among the gentry. Although the controversy was supposedly settled, on terms that did not require the CMS missionaries to leave the hill or the walled city, the missionaries were to learn in later years that the people of Foochow had not forgotten, or forgiven. Wu-shih-shan was a "commanding eminence" standing several hundred feet high in the southwestern part of the city, of which Stephen Johnson wrote in 1847: Among all the places I have yet visited, there is no one commanding so many advantages in respect to climate, romantic situation, prospect of the city, its adjacent beautiful and fruitful plains, its peaceful, meandering river, and the encircling mountains. 20

21 Numerous ancestral and Taoist temples had been built on the hill, and it was also the location of "pleasure grounds" where the inhabitants of the city might stroll at their leisure. Clubs of the Foochow literati were located there. 21 Wu-shih-shan was attractive to the foreigners who came to Foochow with the opening of the port. They were enthusiastic about the beauty of the view and believed that hills were healthier than damper, low-lying areas. From Wu-shih-shan, the British consulate could spot incoming ships. If the missionary lived on Wu-shih-shan he would be able to reach the great population of Chinese living within the walled city. The Chinese, however, were not pleased at the prospect of foreigners taking up residence on Wu-shih-shan or anywhere within the wall; the success of the British consulate in locating on the hill in 1844 had been in the face of strong opposition. Until 1850 this opposition prevented the missionaries from living there. Jackson and Welton, the CMS missionaries who arrived in Foochow in May 1850, looked at Wu-shih-shan as longingly as had their predecessors of the American societies. They had, moreover, an advantage that their American missionary colleagues had lacked, namely, the presence of a consulate of their own country to which they could appeal for help. The two English missionaries brought with them a letter from the bishop of Hong Kong to the consul, expressing the desire that the missionaries be located within the city. 22 When Welton and Jackson arrived, the British consul, R. B. Jackson; was away, but the consular interpreter, Dr. W.R. Gingell, was willing to assist. He asked the local officers for help in getting houses for the missionaries, suggesting that a location near the consulate would be desirable. About fifteen days later, the Chinese suggested some houses in the harbor area, which were, in Gingell's judgment, in a "filthy and dilapidated condition." Meanwhile he had heard, through one of the servants in the consulate, of the availability of rooms in a temple on Wu-shih-shan known as Shen-kuang-szu. Gingell made arrangements with the temple priests for the rental of the rooms, and the district magistrate, Hsing-lien, put his seal on the agreement. It had all been very easy. The American missionaries were astonished at the good fortune of their English colleagues. 23

22 This seeming reversal of what had been a consistent policy not to allow foreigners other than consular officers to reside within the walled city requires some explanation. Such evidence as there is and the logic of the situation make it appear reasonably certain that there had been a slip-up or a misunderstanding on the part of the magistrate rather than a considered decision to change a policy. Hsing-lien, who apparently handled the matter rather hastily, appears to have assumed that he was following precedent in approving foreign rental of temple premises on Wu-shih-shan; he did not realize that the new foreigners on the hill were not consular employees. Apparently an important reason why he had not become better informed about the situation was the fact that the assistant whom Chinese officials had relied upon in the handling of such matters was away from Foochow at the time, and the magistrate did not have the benefit of his help. The question arises as to whether Gingell had deliberately misled the Chinese officials about who Welton and Jackson were. In view of the fact that Gingell had asked for help in finding housing for the two men two weeks earlier and the officials had offered them properties in Nantai, a reasonable conclusion would be that Gingell had not hidden the fact that the men he was helping were not consular employees and that Hsing-lien had acted on the basis of a hasty assumption and without the help of subordinate officers who knew more about Jackson and Welton. If there had been deliberate deception, the Chinese officials would almost certainly have complained about it in their communications to higher British officers, particularly Governor Bonham. However this may be, it seems quite clear that the Chinese had not intended to open Wu-shih-shan to residence by foreigners other than consular officers and employees. 24 Although Hsing-lien's seal was on the rental agreement, Gingell seemed to have sensed that trouble could still arise, and he urged the missionaries to move in to the Shen-kuang-szu premises as quickly as possible. Consular servants slept in the rented temple rooms a couple of nights while Jackson and Welton were preparing for the move, which took place on June 27. 25 Trouble began, however, even before the missionaries moved in. Just two days after the conclusion of the rental agreement, Gingell began receiving communications from Hsing-lien and other Chinese officials

23 urgently requesting him to return the rental documents and agree to have the missionaries live outside the city. The priest of Shen-kuang-szu, under pressure from the officials, asked Gingell for the return of the rental agreement and attempted to give back the quarterly rent he had already received. Gingell refused to return the agreements, however, taking the position that foreigners had a treaty right to reside in the city, and that in this particular case the proper procedures had been followed and the Chinese magistrate himself had put his seal on the papers. When pressed on the matter, Gingell informed the Chinese officials that he was referring the case to Governor Bonham in Hong Kong. 26 Behind the frantic official efforts to undo the Shen-kuang-szu arrangements so soon after they had been made was an explosion of protest among students and gentry. In the weeks that followed, this protest took many forms: a '"public letter from the gentry and people of Foochow to the English foreign officer"; petitions to the Chinese authorities; public meetings; the posting of placards and the publication of pamphlets; and even harassment of the missionaries and threats of violence. 27 Meanwhile knowledge of the tense situation at Foochow spread far and wide, and officials outside of Foochow took up the cause of the gentry, sending memorials to the throne which expressed righteous indignation over the presence of the missionaries on Wu-shih-shan and disapproval of the Foochow officials' mishandling of the matter. 28 Extensive evidence points to the conclusion that Lin Tse-hsii (best known for his crackdown on the opium trade at Canton in 1839), who had come to his home in Fukien for rest following his relinquishment of the governorgeneralshiP. of Kweichow and Yunnan in 1849, played an important role in the protest. The most important statement of the gentry's objections to the residence of Welton and Jackson on Wu-shih-shan was variously reported to have been written by him or, at least, approved by him. The "public letter" was originally sent to Gingell. It was subsequently published as a pamphlet under an additional title, "A notice to the gentry and people within and without the city for a public consultation to expel the foreigners." 29 This interesting document 30 sets forth the gentry's reasons for why the missionaries should leave Wu-shih-shan an.d find

24 suitable quarters outside the walled city. The chief argument was the same one the foreigners had heard in the other ports, notably Canton: the Treaty of Nanking gave the foreigners the right to live in the harbor areas (kang-k'ou), not within the walled cities. In the case of Foochow this was taken to mean that foreigners were permitted to live in the Nantai suburb. According to the treaty, there should be due regard for the feelings of the people in the renting of properties for use by foreigners; in this case the people were opposed, and if there was defiance of the people's feelings, violence might result as at Canton. The Shen-kuang temple was a public place, where scholars went to study;31 it should not have been rented to foreigners. The priests, who were employed merely to burn incense and light candles, had no right to rent the property; the magistrate's seal had been put on the agreement erroneously. The foreigners should understand that an error had been committed, and act reasonably in the matter. Finally the letter argued that there were many ruffians on the hill and that the persons and property of the foreigners would not be safe there; moreover, if the missionaries were injured or their property were taken, popular hostility to their living on the hill might make it difficult for the officials to apprehend the culprits. The embarrassed officials who had to assume responsibility for what had been done and for trying to get the foreigners out used some of the same arguments, and added some of their own in communications sent to Gingell and to Governor Bonham. Hsu Chi-yu, the governor of Fukien, and Liu Yun-k'o, the governor-general, drew on both Confucian and Christian morality in their efforts to persuade the foreigners to give up the temple premises. The foreigners should act reasonably so as to avoid upsetting harmonious relations. It was a principle of Chinese government, the governor-general wrote to Bonham, to "comply condescendingly with the feelings of the people." For the foreigners to continue in possession of the disputed quarters would be opposed to reason. His sole concern, he wrote, was that there should be peace between the two parties; he sought to avoid thwarting the will of the people, and he did not want to be lacking in kindness to men from afar. Everything would be all right if the missionaries would accept a clean and commodious place outside the city. 32 The governor, author of the Ying-huan chih-lueh, a work on world

25 geography published in 1850,33 argued that the religion of Jesus exhorted men to practice good actions and delighted in peaceful relations rather than violence and quarrels; he was sure the missionaries could not be pleased at causing resentment among the people. 34 When it turned out that the foreigners could not be persuaded by reason, the Chinese-officials, gentry, and people-took a variety of actions in the hope of discouraging them or frightening them to the point where they would decide to give up and leave. Officials spread the word that no one should go to Shen-kuang-szu for medical attention or listen to the preaching of the missionaries. They also let it be known that if any carpenters or masons made repairs to the rather dilapidated Shen-kuang-szu premises they would be severely punished. The temple priests were instructed to refuse any more rent money, thus making the missionaries guests rather than tenants. Certainly the two foreigners would have enough sense of the proprieties to realize that they should not stay on indefinitely as unwelcome guests. 35 It appears that pressure was put on the missionaries' Chinese teachers to leave their employment; in any case, the Chinese teachers of both the English missionaries and the American missionaries in Nantai stayed away from their work for a time. 36 Some roof tiles and a garden door were removed from the Shen-kuang-szu premises. 37 Late in August Welton wrote that "in the course of last night a large stone was thrown upon the roof of our building, which aroused us and broke the tiles." 38 At one point a crowd of people assembled at Shen-kuang-szu, apparently with the purpose of forcing the missionaries to remove, but they were not harmed. Placards threatened violent action against the English missionaries. 39 Another frightening episode was the posting, presumably by opponents of the missionaries, of a placard which was probably intended to be taken as their own handiwork. This placard, which "threatened the literati and people of Foochow with severe punishment from the English in case they were not quiet," added fuel to the flames of antiforeign feeling. 40 Neither the missionaries nor British officials were convinced by the arguments of the Chinese or frightened by their threats and harassments. The missionaries believed that they had the Lord's work to do in Foochow

26 and that residence in the city was essential. They were willing to consider some other suitable premises within the city, but not to leave it. For the British authorities this battle for the right of foreigners to reside within the walled city of Foochow was part of a larger struggle. Having made good the right of Englishmen to reside within the walled cities at three of the ports, and having continued to reserve their rights at Canton, the British authorities were not about to yield to the argument that foreigners had no treaty right to reside within Foochow. Lord Palmerston, British Foreign Secretary, commented that Ch'i-ying, one of the chief Chinese negotiators, had acknowledged that the Treaty of Nanking gave the right to reside in the cities. 41 Governor Bonham, to whom Gingell had referred the Chinese demand for the removal of the missionaries, instructed Vice-Consul W. Connor to inform the Chinese authorities in Foochow that he would not ask the missionaries to leave the city, where they had a treaty right to live; he added that the Chinese authorities would be held responsible for their safety. 42 On August 30, 1850, Connor informed Governor Bonham that these sentiments had been communicated to the Chinese governor-general. 43 Subsequently Lord Palmerston himself approved the actions of the British officers in China in the matter. 44 Caught as they were between the demands of the Foochow gentry and the determination of the English missionaries and the British authorities, the Foochow officials were in a most unenviable position. To support the missionaries in the face of the gentry's efforts to bring about their eviction was to invite all kinds of trouble. The gentry had two deadly weapons which they could use against the officials. They could stir up the common people to the point where they might actually carry out threats of violent action against the missionaries. Or, at a time when xenophobia was on the rise and when the Manchu court was becoming increasingly intransigent in its relations with the foreigners-a development which the foreigners saw most clearly in the substitution of the uncooperativeness of Hsu Kuang-chin and Yeh Ming-ch' en for the conciliatory policy of Ch'i-ying at Canton-the gentry might get the word to Peking that the Foochow officials were being soft on the barbarians and were enraging the people in the process. On the other hand, to deny the foreigners what they took to be their treaty rights

27 was also to court disaster. The foreigners might be provoked to use the power which had humbled China in the Opium War. Governor Hsu Chi-yu was fully aware of the strength of the barbarians, and he was obviously concerned lest by a mishandling of the Wu-shih-shan matter he might provoke drastic action by the British. 45 The Chinese documents make it clear that the officials proceeded very cautiously. Although they hoped that they might escape from their dilemma by getting the foreigners to leave the hill, they avoided taking the kind of action that might provoke Great Britain to use force in defense of treaty rights. They asked the missionaries to leave and put some pressure on them to do so, but they stopped short of evicting them. When it was pointed out to them that refusal to allow carpenters and masons to work for the foreigners was contrary to the treaties, they conceded the point, and the missionaries were able to employ workmen to repair their quarters. 46 Meanwhile the officials did their best to restrain the gentry by holding out hope that the foreigners would eventually leave the hill; on at least one occasion they told the gentry that the missionaries could not be expected to leave Shen-kuang-szu until they had found another place to live. 47 Meanwhile they provided soldiers to guard the missionaries when there seemed to be danger of mob violence. 48 Although the officials realized that they could be undone by either the gentry or the foreigners, it is quite obvious that they were more afraid of the latter than they were of the former. In this respect this particular test of strength was different from some others that would come later, when the officials were willing to take their chances of trouble with the foreigner in order to avoid trouble with the gentry. When the foreigners refused to be persuaded to leave the hill and when it became plain that the Foochow officials were not about to evict them, the gentry found other champions for their cause. Shortly after the Foochow officials had received Governor Bonham's message that the English missionaries had a treaty right to reside within the city and that they could not be asked to leave, three Chinese officials outside of Foochow, who must have been informed of developments there by members of the gentry, sent in memorials deploring the fact of foreign residence on Wu-shih-shan and criticizing the Foochow officials for their handling of the case. The memorialists

28 were Sun Ming-en, a Hanlin Reader; Lin Yang-tsu, a junior metropolita n censor of the Board of Works; and Ho Kuan-ying, a censor for the Hu-kuang circuit. Their memorials were dated, respectively, August 25, September 4, and September 6. 49 These three critics of the Foochow officials set forth the various reasons, which had already been advanced by the Foochow gentry, why the foreigners should not be permitted to reside on Wu-shih-shan. The memorialists accused the Foochow officials, especially Hsu Chi-yu (who was already suspect for having published the Ying-huan chih-lueh), of favoring the foreigners and suppressing the people instead of joining with the people to resist the foreigners (as at Canton). In November Ho Kuan-ying sent in another memorial in which he linked the question of foreign residence on Wu-shih-shan with fantastic rumors about foreigners having stopped up Chinese cannons which were necessary to the defense of Foochow. 50 The Foochow officials were on the spot. It is clear that the Manchu court took a very serious view of the situation which these memorialists brought to its attention. Hsu Chi-yiiand Liu Yun-k'o received a succession of edicts which reminded them of their responsibilities, instructed them to uphold the treaties and tranquilize both the people and the foreigners, and ordered them to memorialize fully about the handling of the case. 51 In response to Ho Kuan-ying's second memorial, the emperor instructed the imperial commissioner for the five ports, HsuKuang-chin, to conduct an investigation. 52 In January 1851 the emperor ordered Yu-t'ai, who had been appointed to replace Liu Yun-k'o as governor-general, to investigate the matter and report fully. 53 The position of the Foochow officials was now an impossible one. As before, they still faced the problem raised by the contradicto ry claims and desires of the foreigners and the gentry. Now, however, they were expected to insist on compliance with the treaty (presumably the Chinese version permitting foreign residence in the kang-k'ou but not in the walled city) and to avoid thwarting the will of the people. "Generally it is expected that the people and the barbarians should be at peace." While complying with these impossible requirements, the Foochow officials would have to defend themselves from the charges of their critics and undergo close scrutiny of all they had done. Hsu and Liu defended themselves as best they c_ould in a succession of memorials. Hsu argued that the kind of resistance to the foreigners that had

29 been possible at Canton, where foreigners had been denied entry into the walled city, was not possible at Foochow. The Foochow people were not like the Cantonese; they were strong on profits, weak on principles, and not strong-willed. The foreigners had to be dealt with carefully, lest they take advantage of the situation to make trouble. 54 The officials tried to hold out some hope that Welton and Jackson would move, and in one memorial they forwarded the results of an investigation by Lu Tse-ch'ang and Kuo Hsueh-t'ien, deputies who assisted with barbarian affairs. Lu and Kuo reported that two of Welton's patients had died, and that as a result no more patients were coming to him. The two missionaries were arguing about whether they should leave, and it was unlikely that they would stay much longer. 55 But expressions of hope that the missionaries might leave in the future were no substitute for actually bringing about their departure. On August 21, 1850, Governor-general Liu took the unusual step of sending a direct communication to Governor Bonham in which he repeated the various arguments why the two missionaries should leave the city. 56 Collins, one of the American missionaries, seems to have been correct in his judgment that by "continuing the correspondence, the viceroy indicates a disposition not to eject these brethren from the city." He went on to say that the English missionaries were "persuaded that they will be left in the undisturbed possession of their house." 57 On October 5, Stephen Johnson wrote that "our Episcopal brethren yet maintain their position within the walls of the city, and think the government will not venture to molest them. " 58 The Chinese officials could not get the foreigners off the hill without taking actions which they feared would lead to serious trouble with the British. But without evicting the foreigners they could not satisfy the gentry or their official critics. Finally, apparently in desperation, Governor Hsu decided to take a course that had been open to him all the time. It would not satisfy his critics, but it might weaken their attack, and permit him to save some face. The missionaries had never taken the position that Shen-kuang-szu was the only place in the city where they would be willing to live. Rather, they had insisted upon their right to rent a suitable property within the city. What had made them so stubborn about staying at Shen-kuang-szu was the fact


that from June to November the only alternative open to them was to leave the city and settle in Nantai. In November Hsu finally decided to try to get the missionaries out of Shen-kuang-szu by offering them another location in the city. The officials proceeded cautiously with the effort to arrange such a compromise. Their first approach to the English was made through an intermediary, Moses White of the American Methodist Mission. 59 Subsequently Welton met with the consul (Charles A. Sinclair) and the former magistrate (Hsing-lien). According to Welton, the magistrate was in "great tribulation." His object, Welton reported, "was to get us to remove to another temple near this, unobjectionable to the Literati." 60 The temple which was offered to the missionaries was known as Tao-shan-kuan. It was close to the British consulate, and at one time the consulate had rented it as a residence for its interpreter. 61 By December 13, Welton had decided to agree to the exchange. 62 Subsequently a CMS publication reported that a desire to help the Chinese officials escape from their troubles was a factor in the missionaries' decision. 63 Apparently there was some difficulty about whether the missionaries would be permitted at a later date to erect a foreign building on the site, and Hsu Chi-yu reported that he had refused to give them such permission. 64 But the agreement on the conditions of the exchange was reached, and by January 21, 18 51, both Welton and Jackson had left Shen-kuang-szu. 65 Although he had failed to get the missionaries out of the city, or even off the hill, Hsu Chi-yii made the most that he could out of the exchange of the two temples. He reported that the foreigners had relinquished Shen-kuang-szu; the rental agreement had been turned over to the Chinese authorities. The temple priests had been instructed never agaii:i to rent rooms to foreigners. The British consul, Sinclair, had had to back down from his former position. Tao-shan-kuan, to which the missionaries had moved, had already been occupied by foreigners. It was some distance away from Chinese residences, and the .gentry and people had never objected to its use by foreigners. Hsii's report sounds as though the missionaries' use of Tao-shan-kuan was to be only a temporary arrangement, but it should be noted that they were given a rental agreement carrying the seal of the district magistrate. There is nothing in the missionary or consular accounts to suggest

31 that the arrangement was regarded as temporary. The rental agreement provided that "it should be at the option of the lessees to continue the hiring of the said houses. " 66 Judging from the reports of Yu-t'ai, the new governor-general, who had been instructed to inve~tigate the charges against Liu Yun-k'o and Hsu Chi-yu, the removal of the two missionaries had calmed the local gentry. They had recovered their place of study, and were not concerned about the missionaries' going to Tao-shan-kuan, where foreigners had lived before. Yu-t'ai's main criticism was directed against Hsing-lien, who had sealed the rental agreement on Shen-kuang-szu back in June. Yu-t'ai recommended that the foreigners be allowed to stay on at Tao-shan-kuan for the time being. Evidently he was no more able to cut the Gordian knot than his predecessors had been. Although no one could deny that the foreigners were still in the city and on Wu-shih-shan, Liu Yun-k' o and Hsu Chi-yu did not come out too badly in the reports of either Yu-t'ai or Hsu Kuang-chin, who had also been ordered to investigate the handling of the case by the Foochow officials. 67 But neither the exchange of residences on the hill, nor the reasonably objective reports of Yi:i-t'ai and Hsu Kuang-chin could save the Foochow officials from the emperor's wrath. Hsing-lien's dismissal had been ordered in an edict of October 30, 1850, though Hsu Chi-yu had continued to make use of the "dismissed official" in his efforts to solve the Wu-shih-shan problem. Hsing-lien's role in working out the exchange of the temples did not blot out records of his mistake in June. 68 Liu Yun-k'o had given up the battle in December when he had asked for leave because of ill health and had been replaced by Yu-t'ai. 69 Hsu Chi-yu was reprimanded in January 1851 and relieved of his post in June. 70 The tenure of the Foochow officials in their positions turned out to be less secure than the position of the missionaries on Wu-shih-shan. The Foochow missionaries-not only Welton and Jackson, but their American colleagues as well-were elated over their victory. C. C. Baldwin of the American Board wrote that "a great point" had been gained. 71 The English missionaries were grateful to their own government for the support they had received. Welton was grateful to Hsu Chi-yu for having an official seal put on the Tao-shan-kuan rental agreement. 72 It would be interesting to know whether he actually expressed his gratitude to that beleaguered official.


Welton hoped that the property transfer would "restore us to the favor and good feeling of, I trust, all parties." 73 The Church Missionary Society liked to think that the success of the missionaries in staying on Wu-shih-shan was to be explained by the fact that Welton's medical practice had won friends for the mission and that, accordingly, Chinese opposition had diminished. 74 A somewhat more realistic explanation would have been that, hard-pressed as they were, some high-ranking Chinese officials had refused to take the risks that would have been involved in expelling the missionaries from the hill. Even as they were gaining their "great point," however, the missionaries were learning something unpleasant about their relationship to Foochow, and at least one of them had sensed that the victory at Wu-shih-shan had not been won without a price. C. C. Baldwin had written on October 2 that: 75 All of us have felt the effects of these difficulties more or less. At one time nearly all the teachers left us ... Besides this, we soon saw that the bearing of the people toward us had changed, especially away from the immediate neighborhood of our houses. Their looks often were of hatred and anger. The boys and young men especially were forward in their insults. He went on to reflect: Whatever has been the previous bearing of this people toward us, there still exists as in other ports a strong undercurrent of prejudice. Circumstances reveal the depth and strength of the tide and the vast responsibility that it rolls down upon us ... We are the foreigners, the hated foreigners, and may as well first as last adopt the prudent measures, in our intercourse with the people, which the imposition makes necessary. What measures? Show that we are governed always by those principles of right which the word lays down. We are not to presume on their kindness, neither are we to be moved from our purposes of benevolence by their hatred. As Englishmen, Welton and Jackson had a treaty right to reside in the city; as missionaries they were convinced that the Lord's work required their presence in Foochow. Had they been able to look into the future, however, they might have decided that holding on to Wu-shih-shan at this particular


time was not worth the price. The controversy of 1850 left a legacy of bitterness which was to plague the English missionaries for twenty-eight years.

Chapter III "THE SCRIBES AND THE PHARISEES OF CHINA" THE STRUGGLE TO MAINTAIN THE WORK IN FOOCHOW, 1851-1860 One of the startling aspects of the controversy over Shen-kuang-szu is that the case made against Welton and Jackson was not so much that they were missionaries as that they were foreigners. Although the two Englishmen were sometimes referred to as missionaries, only one of the surviving Chinese documents expresses alarm about the nature of the doctrines they were preaching. The impression is given that except for consular officers, to whom the privilege of living in the city had been conceded in 1844, the foreigners who came to Foochow were all in the same boat: they all encountered opposition because they were outsiders. The foreign merchants were satisfied to live in the harbor area, but it would be reasonable to assume that if they had tried to live in the city they too would have had trouble. During the years prior to the "second treaty settlement" in 1858-1860, missionaries and traders had a good deal in common in spite of their different aims and their reservations about eacn other. The missionaries were no happier than the merchants at having their activities limited to the five ports. Both ran into obstacles as they tried to exercise the rights they were supposed to enjoy. In particular, both groups had trouble acquiring the property they needed, even in Nantai. The treaties had not represented a real meeting of minds between China and the West, and the Chinese authorities in Foochow, as in Canton, were not overly anxious to make compliance with their provisions a matter of highest priority. When the Chinese did appear to be paying attention to the treaties, it sometimes seemed that they were more interested in using the letter of the treaty to obstruct the foreigners than they were in living up to its spirit and intent. The uncooperativeness of Commissioners Hsu Kuang-chin and Yeh Ming-ch'en at Canton, in their relations with the foreigners, was often paralleled by similar uncooperativeness of the Foochow officials in matters affecting both missionaries and traders. What the missionaries and the foreign merchants had in common became clearer as the foreign trading community in Foochow suddenly began to

35 increase in 1853, when the growth of large-scale tea exports brought large numbers of businessmen, representing firms like Jardines, Russell, Heard, and others, to Foochow. In 1853 Maclay reported in some excitement that five American ships were in Foochow, loading tea. The next year he was pleased at the arrival of a steamship. 1 By 1855, Welton could report that the number of foreigners in Foochow had grown to 100. Foreign traders took up residence on the island of Chung-chou and on the south shore opposite, becoming close neighbors of the American missionaries. 2 "Our 'hill houses'," wrote Justus Wentworth, one of the Methodist missionaries, "are now only part of a cluster of foreign residences. " 3 To some extent the coming of the foreign trading firms and personnel was an embarrassment to the missionaries. The morals of some of the traders left a good deal to be desired, particularly their tendency to take in Chinese women. 4 The reluctance of the missionaries to have the Chinese discover that not all people in the so-called "Christian nations" were very Christian was something that would persist into the twentieth century. On the other hand, the missionaries could not help but be pleased at the growth of the trade. Wentworth spoke of "the advance and predominance of commerce and civilization. " 5 Peet wrote enthusiastically about the large numbers of men, women, and children who found employment in picking over tea leaves, preparing the tea, and conveying it to ships. 6 Although Welton was on occasion much distressed over the morals of merchants, he managed in 1855 to express the hope that "trade opening at this port may have a beneficial effect upon the missionary work as it will correct many prejudices which exist respecting foreigners, and which nothing but closer intercourse with foreigners will effect." 7 In certain ways, the presence of the merchant community was a convenience and a help. The foreign merchants frequently contributed funds to missionary work, particularly schools and hospitals. The growth of the trade facilitated travel in and out of the port, and use of the credit facilities of the new mercantile settlers enabled the missionaries to dispense with their reliance on opium ships for transfer of funds. Frequently merchants were glad to rent or buy mission houses which the missionaries were not using. Some of the mission8 aries, at least, had some social intercourse with the foreign merchant community.

36 Both the missionaries and the foreign merchants needed the support of the foreign governments. Maclay wrote, with respect to the coming of the merchants: It will also call the attention of our government to the place; our rights will consequently be more respected by the Chinese authorities ... and in troublous times like the present we and our people can have the protection of our government. 9 Both missionaries and merchants advocated, and welcomed, the appointment of an American consul to the port. In 1852 Johnson had transmitted to the American Board a recommendation for such an appointment. 10 In 1853 Humphrey Marshall, the American Commissioner, wrote to the Secretary of State: Certain merchants of the United States having made arrangements to ship from Fuchowfoo during the present season, I have considered it advisable to confer on Mr. Charles W. Orne ... the temporary appointment of Consular Agent at Fuhchau. He will be enabled thus to extend some shadow of protection over the Christian Missionaries who are at that place.11 On occasion both missionaries and merchants said that the visit of an American or British gunboat to Foochow would have a salutary effect. 12 On the other hand, there is some evidence that at least some Chinese found the presence of missionaries somewhat more distasteful than the presence of traders. One of the opponents of missionary residence on Wu-shih-shan had complained specifically about the objectionable doctrines that the missionaries would be preaching. 13 When the Methodists were building their church on the thoroughfare leading to the south gate in 1856, a Chinese official urged them to put up a sign on the front labelling the building a "tea store," feeling apparently that a tea store was less objectionable than a place of Christian worship. 14 The decade from 1851 to 1860 saw a large number of new missionaries come into the field, but the losses also were large. Many returned home, and several died. The net gain since 1851 was four missionaries. Twenty-four Protestant missionaries were on appointment in Foochow at the end of 1860, out of fifty who had come to the field since Johnson began work in 1847. These figures provide a large part of the reason why the boards regarded Foochow as a costly and difficult field.


Meanwhile the American missions had been trying to get into the city. The American Board discussed the possibility of renting a property from a son of Lin Tse-hsii early in 1856; but on hearing that the place would be used for the distribution of Christian literature, Lin responded that he would not rent for ten thousand dollars. 15 In the same year Peet entered into an agreement to rent a place in the city, but the neighbors and officials objected strenuously, and he could not take possession. 16 In 1860 the American Board mission reported its continued failure to get places for residences and chapels within the city wall. 17 The Methodists thought they had obtained a property in the city in 1859; Maclay preached in it and predicted that "if we can hold this place for a few months, it will then be a precedent for renting elsewhere in the city." 18 The place was mentioned once more, 19 and then nothing was heard of it. Clearly, it became necessary to relinquish it. The problem of the acquisition of property outside the city wall during the 1850s was different and the situation was less clear-cut. On the one hand the missionaries were successful in acquiring numerous properties for residences, chapels, dispensaries, and the like, such as the American Board's acquisition of the Ponasang property, the Methodists' attractive site on the south bank, and Welton's renting of quarters for a school and dispensary outside the walls. In commenting on government opposition to Christian efforts in the first half of 1852, Johnson went on to note that "it is a fact worthy of grateful record that in the meantime three places for the preaching of the Gospel have been erected." 20 On the other hand, the missionaries also ran up against opposition to their acquisition of sites and erection of buildings even outside the walls. In September 1851, Cummings reported that a landlord who had rented a place for a schoolroom and chapel was seized by officials, who gave him seventy blows. 21 Methodist plans to enlarge and improve a chapel near their residence on the south bank in 1852 had to be given up because of "opposition of the people." 22 Peet's efforts to rent places east of the city in 1856 ran into considerable opposition from neighbors. In one instance he gave up his lease when neighbors threatened to tear down the house. In another case the landlord stood firm against the neighbors' objections, telling them that he didn't intend to have the house stand empty. If they wanted to rent the

38 place, they could have it, otherwise he would rent it to Peet; and he did so. In still another case the neighbors assembled and issued a placard saying that foreigners and Chinese could not live together, that Chinese who rented to foreigners were hostile to their own countrymen and they would be driven away and their houses destroyed. In this latter case the American consul intervened, and the Chinese officials squelched the opposition to Peet's rental of the house. 23 The Methodists encountered some official opposition in their building of their church on the thoroughfare south of the city in 1856. 24 But none of these cases was half as frustrating as the difficulties which the Methodists had in the "White-Colder case," a perfect example of how complicated an attempt to acquire property could become. On the Chinese side were popular hostility, official obstruction, and the willingness of some opportunists in. the neighborhood to exploit these conditions to try to extort money from the foreigners. On the foreign side there was anger and frustration, appeal to American diplomatic officials for support, and unsuccessful gunboat diplomacy. In order to build houses for Mr. and Mrs. James Colder and Mr. and Mrs. Isaac W. Wiley, the Methodist mission in 1851 acquired additional land adjacent to their main residential property on the south bank. Two lots were available, and the fact that the missionaries chose one rather than the other may well have helped to start the trouble. The owner of the land which the mission did not buy apparently became a ringleader in opposition to mission possession of the other piece. 25 The purchase negotiations were difficult, with a great deal of bargaining. Maclay wrote that "I could desire never again to pass through such a scene as the one just closed." 26 It appears, however, that the transaction did not receive complete official approval. White and Colder wrote that a deputy to the district magistrate (shui-li fen-hsien) had "approved" the lease, but apparently it did not receive the magistrate's seal. 27 ,Three years later the American Commissioner Robert M. McLane was to note that "the missionaries in their tum, were not without fault in proceeding to take possession of the property in question, and to commence arrangements for building thereon, before they had secured the necessary consent of the local authorities of China. " 28 Plans proceeded for the erection

39 of a house for Colder on the newly acquired property, with White assigned to help supervise the construction. It turned out, however, that the latter's main involvement in the "White-Colder" case had to do with efforts to overcome popular and official opposition rather than with building. When the workmen arrived at the building site on November 5 and were about to commence work, neighbors posted placards warning against engaging in construction of the house until the officials had issued a proclamation authorizing the building. The next day the deputy to the magistrate first assured the missionaries that they could ignore the threats of the people, but a few hours later he sent word that the workmen should not begin work until he authorized it. On November 8 the district magistrate sent another officer, referred to by the missionaries as the "Colonel," to investigate, and ten days later the "Colonel" informed the missionaries that the people were opposed to their building another house and that the district magistrate had decided that the missionaries had enough houses and that no more should be erected. Subsequently, however, the deputy to the magistrate assured the missionaries that there was no foundation for the "Colonel's" assertions, and it appeared that permission to build would come as soon as the complaints of the people could be dealt with. 29 Documents of the Foochow officials about the beginning of the case are not available, and it is not possible to speak with confidence about their initial views and motives. In view of the informal approval given by the deputy to the magistrate and on the basis of missionary reports of their conversations with the officials, it seems that the initial trouble came not from officials, but rather from people in the neighborhood, and it appears likely that people who wanted to extract money from the missionaries may have played the leading part in stirring up popular protest. 30 Opponents of the building employed several arguments. The presence of foreign residences on the south bank had already increased the number of deaths in the neighborhood. Having more foreigners in the area would cause disturbances and contentions. Chinese would move away. The "good luck" (presumably feng-shui) would be adversely affected. Most of these arguments were refuted, not only by the missionaries, but also by the officials. Somewhat more troublesome was the point that there had been a small altar

40 or temple on one corner of the lot, and it would not, therefore, be appropriate for foreigners to use the place. The foreigners were told, however, that a gift of money to the people (perhaps to be used to replace the altar) would overcome their opposition and delight the gods as well. Despite some qualms, the missionaries finally gave the bribe which had been requested. On December 25 the deputy to the magistrate informed the missionaries that "all the people both young and old were willing," and it appeared that a permit to build would soon be forthcoming. 31 Although the officials probably had nothing to do with starting the trouble, official obstruction appears to have been the decisive factor in prolonging it. The officials simply did not provide the permit to build. Time and time again the missionaries went to see the district magistrate, his deputy, and the prefect. On a number of occasions they were unable to see the officials, who were away, sick, or too busy. When they did see them, nothing came of it. The officials did not admit to any unwillingness to have the missionaries build on the property they had rented, but somehow the permit was never issued. Perhaps this was an occasion that called for a properly placed bribe. At one point, after having been assured that things would be worked out and that the permit would be forthcoming, the missionaries asked the workmen if they would be willing to go to work in advance of receiving the permit. The men were agreeable and commenced work; within a few hours a crowd gathered. A spokesman for the crowd indicated that the people were willing to have the building go up but that work should not commence until the officials had acted. The workmen left, and the missionaries had to resume their waiting. Meanwhile they became more and more frustrated. 32 Peripheral annoyances served to exhaust what patience the missionaries had left. They asked for police protection of the building site, as yet unwalled, so as to prevent people from hauling away dirt; the protection was promised but not provided. 33 They decided to move the lumber which had been purchased for the new houses from a place beside the river, where it was "subject to the depradations of thieves and liable to be carried away by the spring floods," to the grounds of one of the existing missionary houses. They requested protection while this move was accomplished, and on the appointed day policemen came. But the police allowed forty or fifty salt coolies, who also


came, to prevent the removal of the lumber. When the mission arranged to have repairs made to an existing house, "the people forbade our workmen to make any repairs whatever, and only consented after payment of money for the privilege." 34 Beginning on February 7, 1852, White and Colder appealed to Peter Parker, former missionary, now United States charge' d'affaires in China, for help in the case. On March 25 Parker responded by sending a dispatch to Imperial High Commissioner Hsu Kuang-chin at Canton, asking him to take necessary steps to bring about enforcement of the treaty so that White and Colder could build their house. Occasional correspondence on the subject went on for more than a year between Parker and Hsu and their successors. Commissioners Hsu and Yeh Ming-ch'en replied only that they would send inquiries to Foochow. 35 If they did so, and if they got replies, they did not communicate them to Parker or Humphrey Marshall, who became American commissioner in 1852. 36 As time went by and the missionaries were still unable to build, they became more insistent in their requests for help from the United States government. On May 4, 1852, White and Colder wrote to Parker, complaining that their difficulties arose from the fact that there was no American officer at Foochow "to remonstrate or represent our grievances to the higher officers," and they went on to ask that Parker send "one of the vessels of the East India Squadron to enquire into affairs at this Port and confer with the high officers of this Provincial City." 37 They repeated the request in a letter of June 8, 1852. 38 Even before the missionaries wrote on May 4, Parker had asked Captain Walker, commanding the U.S. Sloop Saratoga, to visit Foochow. 39 On hearing that the Saratoga would come, the missionaries tried unsuccessfully to use the anticipated visit of the sloop to get action from the officials. 40 The Saratoga did not appear, but the U.S.S. Plymouth did briefly on June 20, and J. T. Gillis, First Lieutenant of thePlymouth,conferred with the prefect. Gillis's negotiations with the prefect were difficult and unsuccessful. He refused to talk to a subordinate officer before the prefect would see him. There was trouble over who would interpret; finally the Chinese agreed to

42 have Maclay serve as interpreter, even though he spoke the Foochow dialect instead of Mandarin. The Chinese officials stood their ground in the negotiation and refused to be intimidated by Gillis's threat that another vessel would visit Foochow to take further measures if the Chinese did not give satisfaction. 41 The main argument used by the Chinese in the negotiation was that the treaty required that in the rental of properties by foreigners due regard should be given to the feelings of the people. This was a familiar argument that had been heard during the controversy over Wu-shih-shan in 1850, but now it was carried to an extreme. The Chinese argued that if a single person objected to a foreigner's renting land in his neighborhood, the transaction could not be allowed. It was necessary to find places where all the people were willing to have foreigners as neighbors. In short, the Chinese were using the very words of the treaty, literally interpreted, to defeat said treaty's intent and to counter a demand for its enforcement. 42 Having taken a clear stand in the discussion with Gillis, the Chinese officials now tried to act decisively instead of continuing their ambiguous stalling. On July 1, 1852, the deputy to the magistrate called in White and Colder and informed them that they should give up their lease to the disputed property, take back the rent money they had paid, and select another lot where they might be able to build in four or five months. He threatened that this was their only chance to recover their money and that if they did not return the lease immediately they would "never be permitted to make any repairs on the houses we now occupy, or rent any other houses whatever at this port - not in one, ten, or twenty years." The missionaries refused all of the deputy's demands and warned that another vessel of war would come. 43 In September the deputy reportedly sent his head servant in company with the landlord to tell the missionaries that the landlord would be put to death unless they gave up the lease. The missionaries refused and reported that the landlord remained at liberty. 44 The failure of the visit of the Plymouth had not destroyed the missionaries' faith in the efficacy of gunboats. They explained to Parker that the trouble with the Plymouth's visit had been that the ship, being quite large, had not been able to come up the river to Foochow, and it had to leave too quickly. 45 In September they again requested that a gunboat visit the port. 46

43 By the beginning of 1853, Colder and White had left Foochow, not to return, but Maclay, who took charge of the missionaries' side of the case, was convinced that the mission still needed the land. More important, he had persuaded himself that: The question now before you and before us is not a paltry struggle with the Chinese for a piece of land; it embraces the important principle whether as citizens of the United States, we can live and labor in this city, in accordance with the Treaty, and under the efficient protection of our Government. He went on to argue that the "honor and faith of our Government are involved in this question." 47 It turned out, however, that American diplomatic representatives in China were not anxious to use the White-Colder case as an issue for a showdown with the Chinese. In September 1852, Parker suggested to the missionaries that if the Foochow authorities would let them have another "eligible site" they should accept it in place of the site in dispute. 48 The missionaries were not persuaded of the desirability of this course of action49 until May 1854, when Commissioner Robert M. McLane visited Foochow. McLane wrote to the Secretary of State that the missionaries were "gratified and encouraged" by his presence and that he had "satisfied these gentlemen that this difficulty was not one in the power of their government to adjust." He reported that the missionaries had "wisely" determined to make a new selection of land in lieu of the piece in question. 50 What they had refused to Chinese officials the missionaries were willing to yield to a representative of their own government. After giving up the land so long in dispute, the mission was able to acquire other land, build new buildings, and repair old ones. 51 Despite their convictions of their missionary calling and the rightness of what they were doing, the Foochow missionaries were very sensitive to and concerned about the hostility which they faced, and these sensitivities and concerns kept cropping up in their letters and reports. Maclay wrote of "an attitude of decided hostility toward us and our operations." 52 In 1852 he had written that "the influence of national feeling is more powerful here than at any of the other ports except Canton ... from the first the local authorities of this city have manifested a strong antipathy." 53

44 At times there was anxiety lest this hostility might endanger the safety of the missionaries or their work. On May I, 1851, Cummings reported that the new viceroy was believed to be antiforeign and that the Hsien-feng Emperor was determined to eject the English missionaries from the city; he also reported a rumor which "arose and spread among the people that some decisive measures were going to be adopted in relation to all the foreign residents here." 54 In October 1852 Maclay expressed his fear that "a time of stern conflict" was at hand. "The enemy is rallying his forces," he said, "and the quiet unostentatious course of our proceedings hitherto may soon be exchanged for scenes of excitement and perhaps peril." 55 In March 1860, the American consul, Thomas Dunn, wrote that "a report is current among the populace to the effect that in a short time all foreigners residing at this port are to be plundered and murdered. " 56 Perhaps as a result of this anxiety the missionaries seem to have been constantly on the lookout for signs that the situation was improving. At one time or another during the fifties Welton, Johnson, Doolittle, C. C. Baldwin, Wentworth, Peet, and Woodin observed that hostility was diminishing. 57 After attending church in Foochow, following his return from furlough, Peet reflected on the great change that had taken place here in the minds of the people towards us and our work. A few years ago, had we been assembled thus, the whole city had been in an uproar, greater than at Ephesus when Paul was there; nor would it have been put down by one, or even all of the magistrates in Fuhchau, till the excited multitude had torn down the house to its foundations, and driven us away from this place of prayer and praise. A few years since, in that immediate neighborhood we encountered stoning and violence in visiting the place where we now reside; nor could the magistrate protect us there for a time after it was first rented. But now, how great the change in all these respects! There is now a sentiment abroad in the community, and it is daily becoming more common, and better understood and observed, that Christianity is a religion not to be hooted at or treated lightly, either by the people or their rulers. 58 At times the missionaries' spirits were buoyed up by specific acts of friendliness from their Chinese neighbors. Late in 1852 people in the vicinity of one of the Methodist chapels, whose previous hostility had prevented repairs on the


property, "themselves suggested that we should make repairs on the place." 59 Hartwell wrote in his diary, about a year later, of his joy that his Chinese teacher had been willing to be seen with him in public and had walked with him for a mile or more as he was coming out of the city. 60 Hartwell also noted that a Buddhist priest, with whom the missionaries became acquainted when they visited the temple on nearby Ku-shan, had called at the Hartwells' house. 61 On his return from furlough in the United States, Peet visited the neighborhood of his first house on Chung-chou and was pleased to receive "the hearty greetings of old neighbors ... They inquired with interest about my children, my own health and present companion, and expressed strong desires many of them to have us take up our abode again on the island." 62 The Methodists were heartened in 1860 when wealthy Chinese contributed over $400 to the female foundling asylum which the mission had established. 63 To speak of manifestations of "friendliness," however, should not be taken to mean that the missionaries were establishing many genuine friendships. Indeed, one of the most startling things about the Foochow missionaries was the almost complete lack of deep, mutual relationships between themselves and the Chinese. There was warmth in the relationships between the missionaries and their converts, but most of the latter were humble people with little education or personal cultivation. The missionary might love them like sons and daughters, but this paternalistic relationship did not include the mutual give-and-take that one associates with friendship. Even in the relatively few cases in which Chinese of education and cultivation became Christians, their relationship with the missionaries tended to be lacking in equality and mutuality. To establish a relationship of equality in Chinese society, the missionary would have had to bridge the gulf between himself and the Chinese gentry, since these were the people whose educational background corresponded roughly with his own. But to establish real friendships would have required a mutual respect that was lacking-both groups would have had to receive as well as give. Unfortunately, neither thought it could learn anything of value from the other. In all the missionary correspondence that has been examined in this study, only one instance of anything like a friendship between a missionary and a member of the gentry appears. That was between


Mr. and Mrs. Francis McCaw and a mandarin family that lived nearby. Between June 185 5 and April 1857, McCaw's journa164 contains frequent mention of mutual visiting between the McCaw family and the mandarin family. But this promising relationship ended with the deaths of the McCaws. The decade of the fifties had been a time of great trial for the Foochow missionaries. They had run into stubborn opposition and hostility, and they took it hard. It is not surprising that they were concerned to discover the source of the opposition. Did it come from the people who lived in the neighborhoods in which they lived or sought entry? Did it come from the officials? Or did it come from the gentry? By the end of the fifties they had already come to some firm conclusions. They had become convinced that the common people, even though they might be stirred to hostile action, were at root friendly and that popular suspicions and prejudices could be overcome. The corollary of this attitude was that it was the gentry and the officials who catered to them who were their enemies. This view that the people were friendly and the gentry hostile became something like an ideology in the missionary community. Behind every popular demonstration of hostility were the gentry-"the scribes and Pharisees of China," as one missionary called them-who incited the people to hostile actions. This opinion was doubtless too simplistic, and the records of specific cases of difficulty described above do not provide clear evidence that the gentry were the sole source of the missionaries' difficulties. But even though the missionaries had painted too simple a picture, using only black and white, time was to show that they had identified their most stubborn enemy, and the bitter hostility of the gentry would show up time and time again in the decades to follow.

Chapter IV MISSIONARY LABORS AND RESULTS IN THE 1850s The missionaries did not come to Foochow to acquire property, learn the language, or even to establish amicable relations with their Chinese neighbors. Nor, although Welton, White, and Wiley practiced medicine, was the relief of suffering itself their goal. Even though the missionaries established schools in the 1850s it cannot be said that they had come to promote education. Nor, although they loaned books and showed gadgets to curious officials, was their aim the promotion of intercultural understanding. Their objective in coming to the mission field was amazingly simple and straightforward. It was to make converts to Christianity. All their work and activity had to be justified in relation to that single overriding purpose. The acquisition of property made the presence of the missionaries more secure and gave them places where the gospel could be preached. Language study was preparation for the communication of the gospel; there is a startling lack of any idea that knowledge of the language could be a means whereby the Westerner could learn from the Chinese cultural tradition. Most surprising of all, perhaps, was the attitude toward medical work. Although the missionaries who had medical training doubtless derived satisfaction from the relief of suffering and the saving of life, medical work, like other aspects of missionary activity, had to be justified with reference to evangelistic purposes. Medical work would maintain the health of the missionaries, so they could proclaim the gospel; it would provide favorable circumstances for conversations about Christianity; or (and this was said less frequently) it would provide a witness to the "humanity which the Gospel inculcates." 1 Whether the missionaries were Congregationalists or Methodists, Calvinist or Wesleyan, American or English, they were all trying to do the same thing, and going about it in much the same way. There were differences in the emphasis which different missions and missionaries put on particular aspects of their work. For example, the American Board missionaries were especially active in the work of improving translations of the Scriptures. But in general the work of all of the Foochow missionaries fit into a common pattern.

48 Home Services There were ways of beginning to make the gospel known even before the missionaries had acquired sufficient fluency with the language to enable them to engage in public preaching. When the missionary had made some progress with the language, but not enough for public preaching, he might start holding regular worship services in his household. His own family, his household servants, their families, and his Chinese teacher would be expected to attend. When a servant boy in Johnson's household went off to play instead of attending a service, one of the missionaries noted that "he is to be admonished. " 2 One of the English missionaries wrote in his journal that he had "catechised" the household "on the history of the creation, Adam's sin, Christ's coming, death for sinners, on heaven, and hell." 3 Tracts Another means of spreading the "gospel truths" without a fluent command of Chinese was by the distribution of tracts. This was done in a variety of ways. The missionaries gave them to visitors at their homes or they took them out on the streets and handed them to passers-by. During their early years in Foochow, they spent quite a large part of their time walking the streets of Nantai and Foochow city, handing tracts to anyone who would take one. One gets the impression that for some of the missionaries in their early years in the field, going for a walk with some tracts to distribute was a welcome relief from the tedium of language study. 4 As time went along, however, tract distribution by missionaries on the move was relied upon less and less as a means of getting the word to the people of Foochow and its immediate environs. Increasingly the tendency was to hand out tracts at the chapels, where it was more possible to add some oral word about the importance of their message. Johnson wrote that "God evidently designs that his word should be illustrated and explained by the living teacher." 5 A favorite place for the distribution of tracts was the examination hall, on those occasions when thousands of Chinese scholars came to Foochow to participate in the examinations for the hsiu-ts'ai or chu-jen degrees. In 1855, when the chii-jen examinations were given in Foochow, C. C. Baldwin reported that 10,000 Christian books in the classical style were distributed to the

49 literary candidates and 3,000 to the military candidates as they came from the examination hall. 6 The missionaries were especially anxious to put Christian literature in the hands of the "literary men," as they often called them. Not only were these men likely to become influential in the society in which the missionaries worked; they were also seen as a means of getting the Scriptures spread to the various parts of Fukien from which the candidates had come to Foochow. The reception given the tracts and the missionaries who distributed them varied. Early in 1848 Collins wrote that "as usual" he had found "a crowd eager to receive them faster than I can hand them out." 7 C. C. Baldwin wrote of people who "demanded tracts or asked for them in such a way as to show that they intended insult and contempt." 8 On the other hand, after spending a day distributing books at the examination hall in 1859, George Smith reported that only two of the candidates had declined the books, and that "some getting one volume, came to us to complete the set." 9 After a time the missionaries discovered that some of the Chinese who sought tracts wanted them more for the paper they were printed on than for the religious truths they were supposed to communicate. This realization was one factor leading to the decision to sell tracts and books for a nominal sum instead of giving them away. Although the missionaries knew that most of their tracts would not be read, and that only a tiny percentage of the Chinese who did read them would develop a real interest in Christianity, they continued to regard tract distribution as a necessary part of their work. For one thing, it was a means of getting some knowledge of Christianity to people with whom the missionaries might not otherwise have any sustained contact. Prior to 1860 the missionaries' travels outside of Foochow and Nantai were limited, for the most part, to trips that they could take during a single day. During such trips they would take some tracts with them and distribute them in the villages and towns through which they walked. For two or three years beginning in 1854, Welton employed Chinese colporteurs to take Christian literature to places where the missionaries themselves could not go. By 185 6 he had three colporteurs at work, carrying tracts as far as Yen-p'ing-fu. There were limits on his ability to supervise them,

50 however, for he himself could not go into the interior, and there must have been doubts about whether the colporteurs were doing what they were being paid to do. In 1856 one of Welton's colleagues in the CMS mission reported that it had become necessary to dismiss one of the colporteurs, who, it was discovered, had not actually gone to the interior. 10 Day Schools Conducting day schools for Chinese children was another means of spreading knowledge of Christianity used by many of the missionaries quite early in their careers. By 1850 Johnson, Peet, Collins, and Hickok had all started schools. Over the years that followed, there were frequent reports of the opening of schools and of their demise as the missionaries in charge left the field or found it necessary to disband them for one reason or another. In 1853 the American Board alone had four schools with nearly 100 pupils. The majority were for boys, but there were also some girls' schools. 11 One reason why schools could be started so readily was that they were small and uncomplicated. Perhaps they should have been called "classes." They were usually referred to as "day schools," thus distinguishing them from the "boarding schools," which came a little later. To start a day school the missionary in charge would first have to employ a Chinese teacher. It was then the responsibility of the teacher to recruit some students. The number of students in a day school was usually quite small, commonly between ten and twenty-five. During half of their school day, the pupils studied Chinese subjects with the Chinese teacher, using the same procedures as in an ordinary Chinese school. According to Collins, "the method of study is, for each pupil to repeat, again and again the words set for his lesson, at the top of his voice, and at the same time that other boys are exercising their voices in the same way. The teacher sits by, correcting such mistakes as he hears made." 12 This part of the curriculum was not of great interest to the missionaries, however; it was what was done during the remainder of the school day which made the schools worthwhile from their point of view. This part of the curriculum consisted mainly of religious and scriptural instruction with, perhaps,


some rudiments of other Western knowledge. To some extent the instructional methods employed in religious study might be the same as in the Chinese studies. Welton wrote that his pupils committed "considerable portions of the New Testament to memory every week." 13 The fact that in the early years the Chinese teachers were non-Christians made it necessary for the missionaries to teach the religious subjects themselves or, at least, to supervise quite closely. Maclay described his method of teaching as follows: 14 My method of instruction is by asking questions. This gives all an opportunity of telling what they know, serves to impress the subject on their minds, and gives me the idioms of the language in a very correct manner. When I ask, "How many Gods are there?" instantly every forefmger is raised, and every voice answers, "There is but one God." "Does he know all things?" "Yes." "Has He made all things?" "Yes." "Who made you?" "Ching Sing" (the True God), they answer ... Today I tried to converse with them about the doctrine of human depravity and the atonement ... They listened very attentively while I explained what the Bible said on the subject. I then asked questions. Do all men come into the world with bad hearts? Are there no exceptions? Are the Emperor, his officers, and all the people alike depraved? Are you depraved? Where do bad men go when they die? Prayer led by the missionary was usually a part of the daily school routine, and the pupils were often required to attend other religious services. Welton's school had texts of the creed, the Lord's Prayer, the Decalogue, and maps of the world and of Palestine posted on the wall. 15 Some of the missionaries had difficulty finding students for their schools, and attendance was not very regular. Pupils were usually from poor but hopefully "respectable" families. Such success as there was in enrolling students was probably to be attributed to several factors. The high value the Chinese have always attached to education doubtless served to make the schools more attractive than some of the other aspects of missionary activity. In addition, material inducements were offered, quite unashamedly. The pupils were given paper, ink, pens, and other supplies, or a small cash allowance with which to buy them. Thus in a journal entry Collins noted that he had "distributed cash" in the school that day .16 Sometimes free meals were a major inducement.

52 Although the missionaries gave a number of reasons for establishing the schools, there was a surprising absence of any argument that learning was an end in itself. The schools were definitely a means to the end of winning adherents to Christianity. Peet put it quite bluntly when he said, "Our schools we regard as only a means to aid us and an introduction to a more full and perfect exhibition of the Gospel by the living voice." 17 Johnson justified the schools "as a means of procuring permanent Sabbath congregations, giving to the young clear and consistent views of revealed truth." 18 C. C. Baldwin wrote of the way in which the schools provided an opportunity for "persevering application of truth to the same minds from day to day and week to week." 19 Maclay noted the importance of the schools in establishing the missionaries in the community ("They have given us a character with the people"), and he also pointed out that work in the schools gave the missionaries an opportunity to practice and improve their Chinese. 20 Through the pupils it was possible to get acquainted with their families. In Baldwin's words, "through this means our families virtually pass the barriers which exclude them from the carefully guarded Chinese household and exert there an abiding influence, which will long be felt." 21 Although the day schools probably fulfilled some of the missionaries' aims, in other respects they were disappointing. Attendance was quite irregular. The students were usually young and without much previous learning, and by the time they had learned one or two thousand characters they tended to leave for other schools or learn a trade. Meanwhile, their religious instruction had not proceeded very far, and they had not become Christians. 22 Boarding Schools A new educational development, by which the missions overcame some of the shortcomings of the day schools, came with the establishment of boarding schools, beginning at the end of 1854. In this development Justus and Sophia Doolittle were particular~y important. While the Doolittles were in Canton and Hong Kong in 1854 for reasons of health, they studied the operation of schools there. On their return to Foochow later in the year, Justus was unable to preach because of a throat condition, and he and his

53 wife devoted their main attention to school work. They started a combination day and boarding school, open to both boys and girls. Some of the pupils attended during class hours on the same basis as in the day schools. Others (fifteen of them by 1856) became boarders with the Doolittle family; among them were several students whose families had agreed to commit them completely to the care of the Doolittles for a period of six or seven years. With Mrs. Doolittle's death in 1856, Mrs. Charles Hartwell took over the care of the girl boarders; two years later, when Doolittle gave up the work temporarily, the boys either became mission workers or were transferred to the Methodist boys' boarding school. 23 The work of the Methodists with boarding schools, although a little slower in getting started, soon overtook that of the American Board. Mr. and Mrs. Otis Gibson began taking boys into a boarding school in the fall of 1856. The boys were between twelve and eighteen years of age, and the mission concluded written agreements with their parents or guardians. These covered periods of from four to six years, and committed the mission to furnish board, clothes, books, and room accommodations; if the boy failed to make good, the mission could remove him from the school. On the other hand, if the boy's family withdrew him, it was obligated to reimburse the mission for the cost of his board and clothing. By 1859, the school had fourteen boys, and was located in a new schoolhouse. In 1859, the Misses Beulah and Sallie Woolston began a boarding school for girls, which by mid-1860 had ten pupils between the ages of seven and thirteen. 24 The boarding school situation made for more sustained and intimate mission influence on the students than had been possible in the day schools. As Maclay put it, "the children are placed entirely under our influence for a term of years." 25 One missionary letter tells of having ten boys from the Gibsons' school in for an evening of singing. 26 The clear expectation was that the boys' boarding schools would not only produce converts but also Christian workers, and Bible study was quite rigorous. Writing about the Methodist school, Maclay wrote, "We wish to make it a Christian Propaganda, from which shall go forth holy young men, with apostolic zeal, and courage, to preach Jesus through this vast Empire." 27 As we shall see, these hopes were substantially fulfilled.

54 Street Preaching To some extent the popular American image of the missionary, which has him out on a street haranguing a crowd, was borne out in Foochow, where the missionaries did indeed preach on the streets. Taking the Christian

message to a new part of Foochow and its suburbs often involved preaching in some kind of public place. If there was to be any preaching at all within the walled city it almost had to be street preaching, for the missions were unable to acquire sites for chapels or churches there until the 1860s. The CMS missionaries did a great deal of preaching on the streets within the walled city. This type of preaching encountered a variety of receptions. On one occasion Fearnley of the CMS expressed some admiration for Chinese tolerance after he had been allowed to preach at the gates of the Confucian temple. 28 Frequently the missionaries commented on the friendliness with which they were treated. Foreigners were still enough of a curiosity so that they could always draw a crowd. On one occasion McCaw was asked to move when he caused a congestion in front of a government office. There were also occasions when the street preachers met with ridicule and unpleasantness. In 1856 the British consulate remonstrated with the missionaries about collecting crowds in the city streets. McCaw was sensitive enough to realize that street preaching must seem ridiculous to well-to-do Chinese; in his journal he commented that the only Chinese who shouted in the streets were vendors. 29 Chapels Although some of the missionaries preached in the streets, the more common practice was preaching in what were called "chapels." Even though the missions paid the rent, bought the furniture, and covered other expenses, the chapels tended to be identified with one missionary or another rather than with the mission. Thus a missionary would write about his visits to "my chapel," and he would speak of the chapels where his colleagues worked as "Brother Peet's" or "Brother Maclay's chapel." If there were four men in a particular mission capable of preaching, chances were that there would be four chapels.

55 Their number varied greatly from time to time, as the number of missionaries on hand to work in them varied. In late 1855 the missionaries of the American Board worked in six chapels; four years later there were only two. 30 The missionaries frequently changed the locations of their chapel work as the acquisition of more advantageous premises and sites made it expedient to abandon old ones. Most of the places which the missionaries called chapels were not specially built for the purpose, but rather were premises of the type ordinarily used for a house or shop, facing directly on one of the city streets. The Missionary Herald spoke of Peet's chapel as being "large and commodious" and on one of the "principal thoroughfares of this place." 31 White's chapel was located in rather dilapidated premises, and for a time the mission refrained from making improvements for fear of offending the neighbors. Subsequently Colder wrote about improvements "which were quietly made by carpenters and painters working with closed doors." 32 On the wall of his chapel Peet posted notices of the Sabbath and of religious services, as well as "sheet tracts of the ten commandments and Lord's prayer." 33 One of the complaints about missionaries most frequently heard is that they separated themselves from Chinese life by remaining within the walls of their Western-style houses. There is some basis for such criticism. Much of the missionaries' family and social life was quite divorced from their Chinese surroundings, and they were especially anxious to protect their children from the "heathen" environment. On the other hand, after studying accounts of the work of the missionaries in the streets of Foochow and in their chapels, one can hardly subscribe to the view that they had no contact with the Chinese world. In their chapels, the missionaries exposed themselves and their beliefs to open-and often quite merciless-Chinese scrutiny. It was only a step from the busy street into the missionaries' chapel, and many took the step. In 1848, Johnson reported that his audience usually ranged from fifty to nearly one hundred souls. Many came in, others stood outside and looked and listened. 34 About forty people came in almost immediately when White opened his chapel, and by the time he began to speak there would be eighty. 35 Most of those who came into the chapels seem to have done so out of curiosity-to see the foreigners and listen to their

56 speech-rather than out of any expectation that the foreigners' doctrines would add anything to the teachings of the Chinese sages, or the religious doctrines and practices of Buddhism, popular Taoism, or the cult of Ma Tsu. Conversations among visitors to the chapel, including comments about the foreigner's appearance, his clothes, and his ability to speak the Foochow colloquial, often made it difficult for the missionary to speak. An added distraction was that the composition of his audience kept changing. On one occasion McCaw visited the chapel of another missionary. By the time the missionary had finished speaking only two members of his original audience were still there; those who had left had been replaced by others who had wandered in. 36 Some of the people who came were of a mind to taunt the missionary or have fun at his expense. 37 The missionaries came to their chapels not only to conduct formal preaching services, but also to talk informally with people who came in. Conversations in the chapel dealt with all kinds of questions. What were the missionaries doing in Foochow? What connection did they have with the opium business? Did the missionary mean that just Chinese were depraved, or Americans and Englishmen too? 38 Even before the missions had made converts who could help them, they sometimes used their Chinese teachers and other employees in the chapels to help in conversation, distribution of tracts, and the reading aloud of Scriptures and tracts. One of the missionaries employed a Chinese who had previously read Chinese books in public places to read the Scriptures in his chapel. When the missions finally had Chinese converts in their employ, these helpers were used extensively for work in the chapels. 39 It was not intended that the chapels fitted out in rented Chinese-style buildings would remain the only places for Christian preaching and worship, and even before the missions had succeeded in making many converts they . began to erect buildings. Indeed, the Methodists built two churches before they had a single Chinese convert. One of the Methodist churches, known as the T'ien-an (Heavenly Peace) Church, was on ground adjacent to the main mission residential site on the south bank. It was really two churches in one, having separate meeting places for Chinese and foreign congregations. The other Methodist church, known

57 as the Ching Sing Church (Chen-shen t'ang, Church of the True God), was located on the main thoroughfare leading into the walled city, about threequarters of a mile from the South Gate. The American Board church, also known as the Church of the True God, was located on the main thoroughfare, but was farther south, close to the Ponasang residential property. The two Methodist churches were erected in 1856; the American Board church in 1857.40 The new church buildings, like the chapels, were intended to be places where the Chinese would hear the gospel preached and be moved to become Christians. They were also intended to maintain a more fitting atmosphere for worship than the chapels. Collins wrote that people coming into the churches would sense that they were "allowed guests, and this, in most cases, would secure a quiet and respectful deportment." 41 The churches were also intended to express the determination of the missions to continue their work in Foochow, as well as their faith in the ultimate success of their endeavors. 42 All three buildings were Western in style. Peet described the American Board church as a brick building large enough to accommodate between two and three hundred people. "The church stands a little back from the street, with a fence in front and a gate through which to enter, with slabs of granite and stone steps leading into the church." He expressed the hope that the sounds which came from the church would remind the multitudes of Chinese out on the street of the "sacredness of the day and of our time and place for worship." 43 Apparently the Chinese were not pleased at the prospect of having conspicuous Western-style churches calling the people's attention to the activity of the missionaries. The prefect brought pressure on the American consul to prevent the completion of the Methodist Church on the thoroughfare. Failing in that, he tried to have a sign with the words "tea store" mounted on the front of the building. A lesser official urged that the church bell be put inside so that no one could see it instead of in an open cupola on the roof. 44 The missionaries and their Chinese helpers continued to work in the

58 chapels, but the new churches became the most important places of missionary labor. In particular, they were places of regular Sunday services.

Literary Work After speaking of the perils which some of the Catholic missionaries faced after the first treaty settlement, as they went into the interior without treaty right to do so, Paul Cohen writes: 45 "The contrast with the Protestant missionaries of the time who lived comfortably with their families in the treaty ports, made periodic trips back to Europe, and devoted their efforts chiefly to translation work was striking." Although the Protestant missionaries in Foochow did not devote their main efforts to translation work, there was no doubt in their minds about its importance, for two reasons. As heirs of the Reformation they stressed the authority of the Scriptures; every Christian should be able to read the Bible for himself and, by extension, the Bible should be in the hands of potential Christians. Secondly, as missionaries in the Middle Kingdom they were impressed with the value which Chinese assigned to the written word and to literary attainment, and they came to believe that it was important that the Bible and treatises on Christianity should be available in good Chinese. When the Protestant missionaries came to Foochow in 1847, they were, in a real sense, standing on the shoulders of the pioneer missionaries who had worked in Malacca, Penang, Macao, Canton, and elsewhere in the south. The tracts and Scripture translations that had been produced by such men as Joshua Marshman, Robert Morrison, William Milne, Walter Henry Medhurst, Karl Friedrich August Gtftzlaff, Elijah Coleman Bridgman, and others were put to use in Foochow. When initial supplies ran out, the missionaries had new printings made from wood blocks in Foochow. 46 It was not long, however, before some of them were engaged in literary work on their own, both writing new tracts and revising and improving old ones. Peet, C. C. Baldwin, and Doolittle of the American Board and Maclay of the Methodist mission were especially productive in this kind of work. Titles of tracts in English translation included Treatise on the Soul, Short Commentary on the Ten Commandments, Rousing Admonition for the Age,


Catechism of Sacred Learning, Discourse on God, Introduction to Christianity, Exhortation to Abandon Opium, Dialogue between a Chinese and a Foreigner. 47 With the opening of the five ports after the Opium War, most of the missionary societies agreed to cooperate in the task of producing a better translation of the Bible, and to this end a Committee of Revision was established at Shanghai. For a time the committee was hamstrung by disagreement over the translation of some crucial terms, particularly the word for God, whether it should be "Shen" (god, spirit) or "Shang-ti" (lord on high). The controversy was to go on for decades; articles and letters on the subject would cover hundreds of pages in the Chinese Recorder and other journals; arguments over the terms question would strain many a personal relationship. In order to get on with its work the committee had to leave the problem unsettled, with the understanding that individual missions or societies would decide which terms to use. The Shanghai Committee completed its translation of the New Testament in 1850. Before it could produce a translation of the Old Testament, however, it was split because of a disagreement over principles of translation. Some members of the committee produced an Old Testament emphasizing literary style, which would appeal to the educated classes; the other group produced a somewhat less literary but more accurate translation, which could be comprehended by people with less education. 48 After the Shanghai New Testament was completed, the missionaries of the three societies in Foochow held weekly, sometimes more frequent, half-day meetings to study the new translation and make "such alterations ... as seemed necessary to express fully and clearly the sense of the original." 49 In their discussions, the Foochow missionaries argued the terms question. At one point Hartwell recorded in his diary that Peet had "waxed warm" and had made an attack on Hartwell to which the latter had replied. Hartwell went on to express the hope that "all sin will be forgiven." 50 During the 1850s most of the American missionaries used the term "Shen," rather than "Shang-ti," About 1860, however, the missionaries began to shift from "Shen" to "Shang-ti," and by 1864 most all of them were using the latter term. According to Hartwell, the term "Shen" gave rise to a large number of misunderstandings among those who heard Christian preaching, and the Chinese helpers and pastors who favored "Shang-ti" exerted a strong influence on the missionaries. 51 In 1851 the Foochow missionaries began sending their

60 revisions of the Shanghai translation of the New Testament to the printers. Improvement of translations and supervision of new printings would be a continuing task. 52 The distribution of the revised Shanghai translation of the Scriptures would continue to be a main basis of the missionaries' appeal to the "educated classes." The fact was, however, that most of the Chinese who showed interest in Christianity were people of the lower classes, not the well-educated. As one of the missionaries put it, "Experience ... has shown that publicans and sinners receive the gospel more readily than Pharisees and lawyers." 53 This fact, plus the usual Protestant belief in the importance of making it possible for the Christian, or Christian-to-be, to read the Bible for himself, created a strong desire to put the Bible into language which people of little education could read. The Foochow missionaries considered a variety of ways of doing this, including romanization and development of a new system for representing the language phonetically. The method finally adopted, however, was that of using the colloquial Chinese of Foochow. The idiom of everyday speech was followed; a limited vocabulary was employed; and some words were represented phonetically by commonly known characters. 54 Behind this decision to use the colloquial language of Foochow was the realization that it was already used extensively by the local populace in correspondence, business records, novels, story books, books on local divinities, and so on. White wrote that books in the colloquial could be read by people with only three or four years of schooling, and that ninetenths of the books sold "at stalls by the wayside" were in the colloquial. 55 There was little or no disagreement about the desirability of producing the Scriptures and other Christian literature in the colloquial, and once the missionaries had made up their minds, they proceeded in some haste. White had his teacher produce a colloquial translation of the Gospel of Matthew, and published it at his own expense in 1851. 56 By 1853 four members of the American Board mission were working on colloquial translations of books of the New Testament, and by the end of the year they had a Gospel of Matthew ready for printing. The following year, translations of Mark, Luke, John, and Genesis went to the printer. 57 Meanwhile Maclay of the Methodist mission and Welton of the CMS were also working on colloquial versions of

61 the New Testament: the former published John's Gospel and the Epistles of Peter and John in 1854 and 1855; the latter, a New Testament in 1856. 58 Peet of the American Board, who was especially enthusiastic about the publication of the Scriptures in the colloquial, could not wait until his colleagues in the mission thought that their translation was ready. Without the authorization of the mission he published in 1856 a New Testament under his own name, which included some translations of his own, which his colleagues thought were poor, and some unacknowledged translations of others. 59 The quality of the rather hastily produced colloquial translations which had been published in the mid-fifties did not satisfy some of the more scholarly missionaries, and most of the Old Testament remained to be translated. Of all of the Foochow missions, the American Board was clearly the most important in this aspect of the work over the years. 6 C. C. Baldwin was especially productive in translation work; Justus Doolittle, Charles Hartwell, and Simeon F. Woodin were also involved. In the Methodist mission, Robert S. Maclay and Otis Gibson were the main translators. Persistent work gradually produced results. In 1866, Baldwin, Hartwell, Maclay, and Gibson published what was referred to as the "first uniform" .or "standard" edition of the New Testament in the Foochow colloquial. Once this was done, the missionaries, especially Baldwin and Woodin, turned their attention to the Old Testament, and over the years the annual mission reports usually mentioned the completion of one or two books of the Old Testament. 61 The Methodists produced hymnals, with colloquial translations of Western hymns sung to Western tunes, and a book of church discipline (a translation of an American book) in the Foochow colloquial. The famous English Presbyterian missionary, William C. Burns, who worked in many Chinese stations, including Foochow, published a volume entitled Hymns in the Fuhchow Dialect (Yung-ch'iang Shen-shih) in 1861. 62 In the early sixties George Smith of the CMS gave "much attention" to translating the baptismal and communion services of the Church of England into the Foochow colloquial and revised a catechism that had been prepared by the American Board missionaries. 63 In the seventies the Foochow missions cooperated in


62 the publication of two periodicals: a children's magazine in the colloquial was begun in 1874; The Foochow Church Gazette, a magazine for adults, was published in classical Chinese from the mid-seventies. The Foochow missionaries also produced for their schools and other uses books on such subjects as arithmetic, astronomy, and geography. 64 Not all of the literary work of the missionaries was done in Chinese for Chinese. Some of them devoted a good deal of time to preparing materials which would help their colleagues in language study and in learning about China. The Methodist mission took the initiative in the founding of the Chinese Recorder in 1867, a monthly journal in English which was read, and contributed to, by missionaries all over China. The Recorder published news and articles, both about missionary work and about China. According to Latourette, "By its news of the various missions and articles on China and missions in China it served to tie the Protestant missionary body together and to influence missionary thought." 65 Baldwin and Maclay worked together over a number of years on a Foochow colloquial-English dictionary; it was published m 1870 under the title An Alphabetic Dictionary of the Chinese Language in the Foo chow Dialect, and was an impressive piece of work. 66 In 1871, C. C. Baldwin published a language textbook entitled Manual of the Foochow Dialect. 67 Medical Work Although it was not until the 1870s that missionary doctors devoted full time to medical work, from 1847 until 1856 the activity of the Foochow missions included some medical practice. Moses Clark White, who was among the first Methodists to arrive in 1847, had taken some medical work at Yale, in conjunction with his theological studies, before corning to China. Although he was not a fully trained doctor, he practiced medicine off and on as medical supplies were available and as he could spare time from evangelistic work, to which he assigned higher priority. His second wife's health obliged him to return to the United States in 1852, and as a consequence of the Board's decision not to send him back to Foochow, he continued his medical studies and became a professor of medicine at Yale. 68 Isaac W. Wiley, who was in Foochow from 1851 until 1854, had studied medicine mainly because a temporary failure of his voice seemed to rule out his being a preacher. He

63 completed medical studies when the prospect of going to China opened up, and on his arrival in China, relieved White of responsibilities for medical work. After his departure in 1854, he entered the ministry and eventually became a bishop of the Methodist Church. 69 Welton was trained as a doctor in England, and subsequently took a theological course. During his six years in Foochow, the missionaries there depended on him to attend to their medical problems, and he engaged in a quite active part-time medical practice, though in 1854 it was reported that the Bishop of Victoria was opposed to his medical work and wanted him to be known as Mister, not Doctor, Welton. After Welton's departure in 1856, there was no medical missionary in Foochow again until 1870. 70 All three of these men were more concerned with ministering to spiritual than to physical needs. Although they responded to calls for medical help, their way of work reflected their primary concern for "souls." Collins reported that White talked to his patients "in regard to the interest of their souls." 71 When Wiley took over the Methodist medical work in 1851, White interpreted for him and preached to the patients who came to the dispensary. 72 For a time Welton worked rather closely with Johnson in the latter's chapel; Welton attended to the people's physical needs, while Johnson handed out tracts and preached. One of Welton's letters tells of being called to the house of a mandarin to attend his wife; after prescribing medicine, he talked with the family for a time and offered copies of the New Testament and some tracts. Subsequently he wrote that he made it a point of conscience to give all his patients tracts or copies of the Scriptures. 73 Although the missionary doctors thought more highly of attending the needs of souls than of bodies, the people of Foochow and vicinity seemed much more willing to accept their medical help than their religious message, and the doctors received many calls for their services from people of all social strata. By September 1855, Welton figured that he had given medical aid to 5,600 people and that the demand was increasing. Although he reported on one occasion that the literati tried to keep the sick from visiting him, even some of the former availed themselves of his services. In June 1854, he treated the wife of the district magistrate, and a year later, the son of a "high Mandarin." 74 In commenting on the medical work, the missionaries spoke frequently about requests for help in overcoming the opium habit and calls for treatment of

64 people who had tried to commit suicide by taking large quantities of opium. They also wrote of setting bones, giving prescriptions for dysentery, and even removing cataracts. 75 Despite the priority given to -religious work, it appears that the missionaries themselves sometimes derived great satisfaction from success in their medical practice. After successfully removing some cataracts Welton confessed that he had experienced a great "e'clat," and on another occasion he expressed pleasure at the confidence that the sick had in him. Shortly before his departure from Foochow, Welton wrote, with reference to his medical work, that a "confidence and sociability is springing up of a very gratifying nature. " 76

Slowness of Results The people of Foochow were amazingly unresponsive to the missionaries' preaching and slow to acknowledge that their souls were in jeopardy. By the time the American Board missionaries finally baptized their first convert in April 185 6, after nine years of labor, thirty-five missionaries had come to Foochow, and of that number more than half had either died or left the field. A common charge against the missionary movement is that the missionaries "forced" or "imposed" their religion upon non-Christian peoples. Despite what may have been the case elsewhere, the record is unmistakably clear that the Foochow missionaries did not forcibly attempt to do any such thing. Instead, they had to persuade those whom they sought to convert, and this was a terribly difficult endeavor. The slowness of the Chinese in Foochow in accepting Christianity also says something in refutation of the common charge that the missionaries obtained converts by offering material advantages to those who accepted the foreign religion. This charge was recently made by an eminent Chinese churchman in Mainland China, Chao Fu San, who told an Australian visitor that many of the Chinese Christians who had given up their religion since 1949 were " 'rice Christians,' members of the church for all sorts of reasons other than the Christian faith. That was the method of the missionaries." 77 If this had been the method of the Foochow missionaries, chances are that they would have had converts long before they did. There were, in fact,


Chinese who indicated a willingness to become Christians, thinking that they would get material reward, but the missionaries were shocked and refused to accept them. Late in 1848 a group of about thirty people in a village about ten miles from Foochow gave signs of a strong interest in Christianity. They visited Johnson in Foochow, and he visited their village on a number of occasions. On their own initiative, they signed a paper offering to give up idolatry and obey the gospel. Their interest faded, however, when it became clear that there would be no material reward, some members of the group confessing that they were poor and were seeking means of support. 78 These nine years of labor without a harvest were very trying ones for the missionaries. Although they could point to certain accomplishme ntsScriptures translated, schools started, patients visited, properties acquired and developed-the se were rather small consolation. Their purpose in coming to Foochow had been to win converts, and for nine years they could not point to a single success. It is perhaps not surprising that they became anxious for results, and at times discouraged, depressed, and irritable. Reports of the missionaries to the boards at home and comments to the publications of the missionary societies dutifully stated, year after year, that there had been no baptisms. Fearnley of the CMS wrote, "I preach and preach and preach, but no one seems to regard my words." 79 In his report for 1852, 80 Maclay wrote that "In Fuh-Chau alone [of the open ports] are converts wanting. This consideration humbles us in the dust." Earlier in the year, Wiley had written that "all around us we see but little fruit of our labors ... The circumstances ... just at present are rather depressing. " 81 Peet wrote that "at other times my weak faith leads me almost to despondency." 82 Welton reported that he had prescribed a little beer and wine to some of the missionaries in order to restore their appetites and spirits: "several missionaries have of late been preserved to this station by adopting my advice in this respect after some importunity on my part." 83 Johnson perceived a relationship between despondency over lack of results and health problems and departures of missionaries from the field. "Could we see enquirers multiplied and great numbers converted to Christ we should be far otherwise affected. Such success would operate as a restorer of our strength and a renewal -of our life." 84 One also wonders if there was

66 a connection between disappointments in the outcome of the work and some of the tensions and frictions within the missionary community. In the Methodist mission, both White and Colder had trouble working with Maclay, who was superintendent, and in September 1852 the mission passed a resolution expressing dissatisfaction with the office of superintendent and requesting that Maclay resign from the post. White was not allowed to return to Foochow after his return to the United States for reasons of health, and Colder withdrew from the mission in the same year, stating that he was leaving the Methodist Church because of a disagreement with its "polity and practice." 85 Peet was a thorn in the side of his brethren in the American Board group; frequently at odds with other members of the mission on various matters of policy, it appears that he did not feel bound by decisions taken by the mission; his colleagues found him both "loose" and "severe"; and there were reports of stormy meetings. 86 In 1859 the Bishop of Victoria was reported to be in favor of abandoning the CMS effort in Foochow. Methodists in the United States, including members of the mission board, doubted whether the China mission should be continued. But the missionaries continued the struggle, "anxiously looking for results," and hoping for "the outpouring of the Holy Spirit." 87 First Converts Having waited so long, the missionaries were jubilant on the occasion of the baptism of their first convert. In April 1856, in the presence of missionaries of all the missions and of students, teachers, and servants connected with the American Board mission, a Mr. Ting, who had been the teacher of Doolittle's school for several years, received baptism. Ting had passed a number of tests of his sincerity. He had led the school in prayer when Doolittle was not there; he had accepted abuse from his countrymen for his advocacy of Christianity; he and his wife had refused to bow to the ancestral tablet during their marriage ceremony; and he went through with his intention to become a Christian even though the decision meant he would lose his adopted son. 88 The Methodists baptized their first convert a year later (June 14, 1857). He was Ting Ang, a quite humble tradesman, who had been illiterate when he

67 began visiting the mission two years earlier, but had then learned to read and received instruction in Christian doctrines. Apparently as evidence of his sincerity, he gave his household gods to the missionaries; some weeks later Gibson and Maclay made an unannounced visit to his house and found no signs of idols. Some weeks after his baptism Maclay wrote that Ting Ang "has given us great satisfaction by his evident sincerity, his humility and devotion to God. We feel that he is, indeed, a child of God, and that his name is written in heaven." 89 Although the first American Board convert had to be excommunicated "for most flagrant violations of the rules of the gospel," 90 these first baptisms of 1856 and 1857 were followed by others and by a slow growth of small churches. By 1857 four converts of the American Board were organized into a church, and by 1860 there were twelve members. Of the twelve, seven (four young men, three young women) had been students of the Doolittles in the boarding school. Another had been a day-school pupil. All of them came from quite humble backgrounds and were, in Peet's words, "poor in the world's goods." The only member of the group with much literary attainment, Mr. Hung, a teacher who had been baptized in 1857, died in the fall of 1858. It appears that almost all of these early church members were employed by the mission or in missionary households in one capacity or another. Of special importance was the appointment of the four young men from the boarding school as mission "helpers"; they took over some of the work that the missionaries had done in their chapels. Meanwhile Hartwell continued to instruct them in theological and Biblical studies. 91 Although the Methodists had been somewhat slower in winning their first convert, in the years that followed they were much more successful than their brethren of the American Board. By 1860 they had a total adult membership of fifty-four in two churches, actively involved in Sabbath services, a Sunday school, quarterly meetings, love feasts, and the like. One of the Methodist missionaries assured the board at home that "our infant Churches have thus far been established on a purely disciplinary basis. The entire machinery of the church at h0me is in full operation here." 92 Like their brethren in the other American mission, the Methodists employed a

68 substantial part of their converts (six by 1860) as "helpers" or "exhorters." Some of these men were very able, and their work helps account for the more rapid growth of the Methodist churches. Particular mention should be made of the brothers Hu Po-mi (Hsu Pao-mei in Mandarin) and Hu Yong-mi (Hsu· Y ang-mei), sons of a military man to whom the emperor had given an honorary title. Hu Po-mi, who was thirty-one at the time of his baptism in 1858, had taken the lowest military degree; he exhorted with "heartiness and earnestness." 93 The CMS did not baptize its first converts until 1861. In his journal en try for March 31, George Smith wrote: Had the unspeakable privilege of baptizing the first two converts in connection with this Mission, and the first that have been baptized within the city. It was also the first time that our baptismal service has been used in this dialect; and much of my time, for the last few months had been spent in the endeavor to perfect a translation of it. We have good reason to hope that the two dear brethren thus admitted into the church of Christ are indeed humble believers in Jesus. They have been long on probation, and have, I trust, taken this step with a deep conviction of its importance, and an humble dependence upon Christ as the only Savior. Smith also reported that he had baptized two more people in July. 94 Obstacles to Missionary Success Up to the end of 1860 exactly fifty missionaries had come to Foochow. It had taken them almost a decade to baptize their first convert, and by the end of 1860 they had baptized about sixty-six. Surely Foochow had not been very receptive to Christianity. This unreceptiveness challenges some effort at explanation. 95 The missionaries were foreigners preaching a foreign religion, and as they themselves recognized, Chinese cultural pride was a major obstacle to their success in winning converts. The foreign barbarians should learn from the Middle Kingdom, not spread their own corrupt doctrines. C. C. Baldwin, one of the more scholarly missionaries in Foochow, wrote of having encountered "inveterate prejudices against foreigners, all strengthened by a 96 consciousness of immeasurable superiority to surrounding barbarian races."


In making the point that Christian doctrines could not possibly be true, an educated Chinese with whom McCaw was conversing asked, "How is it that our great Confucius never knew them nor taught them?" 97 One interesting manifestation of the contempt which the gentry had for the missionaries and their religion was the unwillingness of some of the educated Chinese whom the missionaries employed as teachers to be seen publicly in their company. 98 In speaking of Chinese contempt for the missionaries, some mention must be made of the opium trade. Foochow, like other cities on the southern coast, imported and consumed great quantities of opium, brought to the port by foreign ships. The fact that Englishmen and Americans brought opium to Foochow was deeply resented by many Chinese and served to strengthen their conviction that these men from afar were in fact contemptible barbarians. The missionaries faced no easy task in persuading the Chinese that there was a distinction to be made between themselves and the opium traders. Making the distinction was all the more difficult because of missionary dependence on the opium traders in the early years. For a short time after his arrival in Foochow, via opium ship, the first Protestant missionary in Foochow, Stephen Johnson of the American Board, had lived with an opium captain, and one of the first houses acquired by the missionaries was one formerly occupied by an opium captain. For a number of years the missionaries had to visit the opium ships outside the harbor in order to get their foreign drafts changed in to silver dollars. 99 As they went about their lives and work in Foochow, the missionaries were never allowed to forget the opium trade, and their letters and diaries give abundant reason to believe that Chinese resentment against the foreigner's opium was a major obstacle to Chinese acceptance of the foreigner's religion. In 1852, Welton wrote that the opium trade "is attaching such a stigma to the English name and character that some of us ... would almost be glad not to be known as such." He went on to report that he often faced the rebuff, "Why do you bring us opium?" 100 In 1855, McCaw wrote that his Chinese teacher was "continually seeking an opportunity of bringing forward the question of opium and English merchants." 101 Peet wrote in 1856 that:

70 "No questions have been more frequently put to me by the people of this place during my sojourn among them than those which relate to the subject of opium. Is it not brought from your country? Are not your Jesus Christ's men engaged in selling it to us?" 102 As late as 1877, John R. Wolfe of the CMS wrote: God knows how often and often is our message of peace and salvation contemptuously thrown back in our face with the scornful remark, "You destroy us with your opium, and now you insult us with your offer of peace and salvation." How often and often are our best efforts as missionaries rendered abortive amongst this people by the knowledge that we belong to the country which forces the opium traffic upon China!103 It was not only by bringing opium to Foochow that the missionaries' countrymen embarrassed them. One of the missionaries reported that the Chinese with whom he conversed in his chapel told him about foreigners who "keep mistresses and seem to be very wicked." 104 Another missionary deplored the business which foreign residents of Foochow gave to the Cantonese prostitutes who followed the foreigners to the port. 105 The quickness of the Chinese to point out the moral shortcomings of the foreigners leads us to one of the more paradoxical aspects of the position of the missionaries in China. They had come there with a deep sense of the depravity of men. They were convinced that hundreds of millions of Chinese were perishing and were, therefore, in dire need of knowledge of Christianity through which they could be saved. But the Chinese to whom they addressed their message of salvation were less impressed with their own sinfulness than with the immorality of Englishmen and Americans. The unwillingness of the Chinese to regard themselves as sinful brings us to another obstacle to missionary success. The Christianity which was preached by the missionaries in Foochow-no matter whether they were Congregationalists, or Methodists, or Anglicans-was a religion offering salvation to sinners, whereby through Christ's sacrifice they could be reconciled to God. This was not a message, however, which could easily become meaningful to Chinese, especially the gentry who from their youth had known from memory the opening lines of the Three Character Classic which held, following Mencius, that man is by nature good. Chinese simply found it difficult to see themselves as sinners in need of salvation.

71 Whatever the explanation, it is obvious that many Chinese to whom the missionaries preached did not feel "totally depraved" or in need of ransom lest they perish. The first missionary to work in Foochow, Stephen Johnson, reported that "Perhaps there are no people on earth who have more of selfcomplacency, and less sense of sin, than the Chinese." 106 Wolfe complained in his journal of the difficulty he had in getting across the idea of universal sinfulness. 107 McCaw's frustrations in the same endeavor show up in his comment ... when I repeat, with all of my energy of speech, the blessings of heaven and the misery of hell, until wearied, the only response frequently is, "Is not his shirt very white?" "How many feet of cloth makes your coat?" 108 According to Baldwin, even those Chinese who accepted Christianity "seem most to lack ... a soul-penetrating sense of sinfulness." 109 Another serious obstacle to Chinese acceptance of Christianity was the tremendous price that had to be paid by those who took the step. The point has already been made that the Foochow missionaries did not (at least intentionally) offer material inducements to potential converts. What is really astounding about their work is not the inducements they offered but rather the price they demanded. If there was one obstacle to missionary success in Foochow which stood out above the others (at least on the evidence of missionary sources), it was the almost prohibitive demands that the missionaries made upon those who were thinking of becoming Christians. The Chinese who became a Christian in the mid-nineteenth century was not just called on to accept a set of beliefs and attend worship services. He was called upon to change his whole manner of life. The Foochow Protestant missionaries came very close to asserting that "Unless you become as a foreigner, you shall not enter the Kingdom of Heaven." Looking at what the missionaries demanded, one can hardly wonder that Chinese hesitated to become Christians. Nor can one wonder that modern Chinese nationalists have accused the missionaries of "cultural imperialism." There is something quite puzzling about the point that has just been made. Most of the Foochow missionaries would have agreed with Griffith John that they had come to China: "Not to develop the resources of the country, not for the advancement of commerce, not for the mere promotion

72 of civilization; but to do battle with the powers of darkness, to save men from sin, and conquer China for Christ. " 110 In their correspondenc e there is scarcely any sign of interest in such projects of secular Westernization in China as, for example, the founding of the Foochow Arsenal. If the missionaries were interested only in saving men from sin, how was it that their demands on their converts were so broad as almost to require that the converts become foreigners? Part of the explanation lies in the missionary's insistence that the Chris111 tian religion which offered salvation was "absolute and exclusive truth." The corollary was that Chinese religions were false and to be rejected. The convert was required to shun all forms of "idolatry." Among other things this meant that he was to refuse to contribute to the support of Chinese temples and religious processions and festivals. As Alexander Michie put it at the end of the century, the missionaries' attitude toward Chinese ethics, philosophy, and religion "is that of war to the knife. In order to build the 112 Wolfe of the CMS Christian Church they require the site to be cleared." mission in Foochow wrote that as Christianity "openly avows its determination to expel by moral force every rival system from the altars of the nation, it naturally at first seems strange and presumptuous in its claim•s to this people." 113 This "war to the knife" is in sharp contrast with the tolerance of the Jesuit mission in China in the seventeenth century. From the perspective of an increasingly secularized Western culture, it might be argued that rejection of Chinese religion and acceptance of Christianity need not have drastically affected the convert's participation in other aspects of Chinese society and culture. It clearly did, however. One of the main reasons would appear to be that everywhere they looked the missionaries saw idolatry, heathenism, evil, and superstition. R. S. Maclay wrote: Do we speak to our neighbor, he is a worshipper of an abominable idol. Do we meet an acquaintance in the street, he is just returning from some idolatrous ceremony. Does a stranger salute and address us in the language of kindness, our experience teaches us that he desires money. Does a friend call to see us, a Pagan sits at my side. Do we look around for instruction or sympathy, to whom shall we address our petition? Oh! there is a desolateness in life here which nothing but the grace of God can render tolerable. 114

73 Given this kind of attitude it is, perhaps, not too surprising that the missionaries desired, consciously or unconsciously, that the convert should shake off those things which were regarded as idolatrous, evil, and superstitious. They assumed that when their converts accepted the offer of salvation which had been revealed by Christ they should become new persons. Even though they continued to eat Chinese food, wear Chinese clothes, and live in Chinese houses, the converts were under heavy pressure to adopt a manner of life that was foreign. Probably the most important single illustration of these sweeping generalizations was the missionaries' insistence that their converts stop participating in the traditional ancestral rites, sometimes even that they give up or destroy the ancestral tablets. Since the family system was at the heart of Chinese society and culture, and the ancestral rites were the most important ritual expression of the value attached to the family, the convert who turned his back on the ancestral rites had already moved a long way toward becoming foreign rather than Chinese. The step was a very difficult one for the would-be Christian to take and for many it was simply impossible. Wolfe reported that he had frequently heard people say, as they left his chapel, "What a pity this Christianity does not tolerate the ancestral tablets." 115 At least one missionary drove home the point that ancestors should not be worshipped by teaching that the ancestors were "sinners exposed to the endless wrath of a holy God." 116 Nor were the ancestral rites the only aspect of the traditional family system that was affected by becoming a Christian. Hartwell wrote as follows about the preaching of a Chinese catechist: "Ho Ching spoke for an hour on duties of children to parents and parents to children. He tore the Chinese maxims all to pieces." 117 For the Christian convert, the most important moments and decisions of life became sacramental and were celebrated in the church and within the Christian community. If he was not already married, he was expected to choose a Christian woman as his bride and to be married within the church and according to Christian rites. He was not allowed to take a concubine; if he already had one he was required to give her up. The missionaries did battle with the dowry system which was regarded as tantamount to "buying" a wife. When death came, the funeral was Christian. 118 To


quote a description of the funeral of the wife of a Chinese catechist, "Those parts of the usual ceremonies connected with dressing the corpse and preparing the coffin, which were heathenist and sinful, were of course dispensed with." 119 Although becoming a Christian sometimes led to employment by the missionaries as catechists, teachers, or servants, for others it might mean actual or threatened unemployment. The person engaged in an occupation tainted with idolatry or heathenism, such as in the manufacture of incense burned before idols, or in an immoral occupation, such as the sale of opium, might be denied baptism until the objectionable job was given up. The root of other occupational problems of Christian converts was the requirement that they observe the Sabbath. On occasion, it appears to have been this rule alone which kept inquirers from becoming Christians. In many cases Christians who failed to keep the Sabbath were excommunicated. 120 In general, the missionaries found it very difficult to compromise with the Chinese way of life. On OJJ.e occasion Walker of the American Board complained that even earnest Christians thought "They must be allowed to obey in Chinese fashion, which is to beat down a little, and, as a matter of course, give only a part of what is asked." Walker was very disapproving, suggesting that to "beat down a little" was comparable to "tinkering with a watch." "Much more God has made his law just right, and it would be folly for us to try to tinker[with] it." 121 The cost of accepting Christian baptism was made even greater by the fact that the person who managed to carry out the difficult feat of breaking away from many traditional ties and patterns of life was also subjected to reprisals from the Chinese society. At the very least he could expect ridicule. Wolfe wrote that after one of the CMS Chinese catechists preached in the chapel he "was much abused, called a foreigner, i.e. a foreign child or bastard." 122 Hu Yong-mi, one of the Methodist helpers, wrote of fears which he had in his younger days that he would meet an acquaintance who would ridicule him when he went to church with his brother. 123 An elderly man employed by the American Board told Peet that there were people in Foochow who were convinced of the truth of Christianity but were unwilling to acknowledge the fact openly lest they be ridiculed. 124


It would appear that in a substantial proportion of cases the convert could expect to suffer the anger of his family. Martin of the Methodist mission wrote of one convert that "it was hard for him to be told by his widowed mother that he had no respect for the memory of his father, that he had no filial piety to her as her son." 125 In another case Peet wrote that an inquirer meets with the most violent opposition from all his relatives, and his uncles threaten him if he professes Christianity and unites with the church that they will take away all his land inherited from his father and deprive him of all other means of getting a living so far as they may be able. 126 The threat of disinheritance appears to have been a real one. Woodin of the American Board wrote of a man who was "unwilling to become a Christian for fear he would not be able to inherit family property." 127 Chinese helpers employed by one mission wrote of the concern of inquirers "lest their clansmen usurp possession of their common patrimony." 128 Becoming a Christian could also result in loss of status and prestige. A man who became an ordained priest in the CMS mission lost his honorary official rank at the time he became a Christian. The magistrate who brought about the man's loss of rank charged him with being a "propagator of heterodoxy. "129 Another CMS convert with a graduate degree lost the scholars who had been in his school. 130 Persecution of converts took many other forms. In the records of missionary activity in Foochow and its outstations, there are dozens of instances in which converts suffered destruction or loss of their property, bodily injury, arrest, and social ostracism. If there is any validity to the above analysis of the obstacles to missionary success (stressing culturalism and the heavy demands that the missionaries made on their converts), it would seem to follow that such success as the missionaries had would come in situations where these impediments were present to the least extent. In turning to the work of the missionaries after 1860 we shall see that this was the case. Success came as the Christian message was preached by Chinese helpers (who offended culturalism less than the foreigners) and as it was preached to those who had least to lose from accepting Christianity, the humble people in the rural areas outside of Foochow and the larger prefectural and district cities.

ChapterV "THIS OBDURATE CITY" CONTINUED WORK IN FOOCHOW AND NANTAI, 1860-1880 If Stephen Johnson had been able to return in the seventies or eighties to the work he had left in 1852, he would have marvelled at signs of growth, success, and change in the missionary endeavor. On the basis of the momentum and experience gained in the forties and fifties, the Foochow missionaries went at their tasks with more sophistication and effectiveness in the following decades. Chances are, however, that Johnson would have been more startled at the magnitude and success of the work in the outstations, which will be described in the next chapter, than at the situation in Foochow and Nantai. In the latter cities the work progressed slowly, and by 1880 the "harvest of souls" for which the missionaries labored so hard still had not been gathered in. The most notable advance in the Foochow-Nantai area was the extension of the work, and the organization and limited growth of churches within the walled city. Up to 1860 all the Protestant converts had been connected with the little churches in Nantai, whose origins have already been described. In the 1860s, however, the three missions finally began to make some progress in the walled city. The growth of the work within Foochow city was closely associated with some relaxation in the early sixties of the prohibition on the leasing of land and houses. This temporary lowering of the bars to entry into the city was a manifestation of the changes in Sino-foreign relations brought by the Arrow War. Although this willingness to let the missionaries acquire property in the city was not to be permanent, it lasted long enough for all three of the Protestant missions to acquire places. In the early sixties the CMS obtained three places, including a large piece of ground on a main street, where they built a church, using funds subscribed by the foreign business community. 1 Up until 1861 the only way that American Board missionaries were able to get into the city was by renting a vacant residence on Wu-shih-shan belonging to the CMS. Before the year was out, however, the American Board had acquired a very attractive site on a hill in the southeastern part


of the city. The success of this transaction was a rather decisive test of the changed disposition of the Chinese authorities, for the hill location offered possibilities for complaints aboutfeng-shui, and the fact that the land was acquired in several pieces from several owners could have invited complications. Houses for Hartwell and Woodin were built on this new site. 2 By the end of 18 62 the mission had also acquired two additional properties in the city: one was near the new houses and was used both as a school and a preaching place; the other was a small house, in a not very good location, fixed up as a chapel. 3 The Methodists were the last of the three missions to get into the city, when they acquired a long, narrow property on the main street leading to the East Gate. 4 Thus by 1863 all three groups had missionaries living in the city as well as premises for preaching and schools. Later events were to show, however, that the Chinese had not had a lasting change of heart with respect to missionary presence and work in the walled city. Now that they had obtained entry into the city, the three missions proceeded to press their work there, with the result that before long tiny little congregations of Christians were developed, which became organized as churches. By 1863 the CMS, which had baptized its first converts in the city only in 1861, claimed to have thirteen Christians and five catechumens. 5 In the same year the American Board organized a church in the city with eleven members, nine of whom had previously been affiliated with the Ponasang Church. 6 The Methodists also organized a class of eight members in the city in 1863. 7 During the sixties and seventies the three missions succeeded in baptizing a large number, relatively speaking, of converts. In 1880 the CMS claimed 3,556 converts (including candidates for baptism). 8 The comparable Methodist figure was 2,841 (including probationers and baptized children). 9 The American Board fell behind, having only 215 converts. 10 What should be emphasized about these figures, however, is that most of the converts had been. won in the fast-growing outstations, and only a small proportion were to be found in Foochow and Nantai. These two cities continued to be difficult places of work. In 1865 Maclay reported that the Ching Sing Tong "seems to be about at a standstill." 11


In 18 67, when the Methodists were relatively encouraged about their work as a whole, there were only 30 baptisms in the Nantai and city churches, as compared with 156 in the outstations. 12 On a visitation to the Fukien mission in 1868, the Bishop of Victoria confirmed 90 people, of whom only 33 were in Foochow. 13 In the same year Wolfe complained that there were only four inquirers "in this obdurate city," 14 and after 1868, according to a CMS magazine, "Foochow seemed less and less willing to receive the message of salvation." 15 In 1876 Wolfe saw "rays of heavenly light" everywhere except in "this monster city of Fuh-chow, which still continues dead and barren." 16 In the same year it was reported that out of a total of 1,648 CMS Christians in Foochow and the outstations, only 32 were in the city. 17 Apart from children of previous converts, the CMS baptized only one person in Foochow in 1877. 18 Even thou~h only a small proportion of the total missionary success scored in the sixties and seventies was in Foochow and Nantai, the overall accomplishments were encouraging to the missions, especially to the CMS and the Methodists. In 1876 the Church Missionary Gleaner spread the "Story of the Fuh-Chow Mission" over nine issues of the magazine. 19 The following year Eugene Stock published an enthusiastic volume entitled the Story of the Fuh-kien Mission of the Church Missionary Society. 20 The letters of the missionaries and the reports of the societies took on an enthusiastic tone. A number of factors contributed to this success. One was the greater preparation and experience of the missionaries. Another was the fact that they could now build on foundations that had been laid in the earlier years of the work, or as they sometimes put it, they were reaping the harvest from seeds that had been sown in earlier years. There were cases in which it turned out that candidates for baptism were people who had received the Scriptures from the missionaries or their agents in the past. Some of the new Christians were relatives of people who had already been baptized. 21 Now that the missionaries and Christian converts had been under public scrutiny for some time, it became known to some-certainly not to all- that the horrible stories they had heard about the immoralities committed by the Christians were not true, and there was less fear of being exposed to Christian exhortation and instruction.

79 Clearly, however, there were two main reasons for the success of the missionaries in the sixties and seventies. One was the opening of the hinterland, made possible by the "second treaty settlement" of 1858-1860, which paved the way for the establishment of outstations, a development to be discussed in the next chapter. The other was the establishment of what the missionaries often called the "native agency," in other words, the recruitment, training, and employment of Chinese Christians to engage in the propagation of the faith. In a sense the missionaries were dependent on "native agency" from the moment of their arrival in Foochow. They hired Chinese servants so as to free themselves from household chores and devote more of their time and energy to missionary endeavor. They employed Chinese to teach them the language and teach in their schools. Servants of the missionaries looked after chapel premises and helped with the distribution of tracts. Non-Christian colporteurs were employed to take tracts and the Scriptures to inland centers. Chinese teachers in the day schools might on occasion assist with religious instruction. When the missionaries wrote about Chinese helpers, however, they were usually thinking of converts who were employed by the missionaries to "devote all their time and strength to the work of teaching, catechising, distributing books and tracts, etc." 22 This use of native helpers began as soon as the missions baptized their first converts, and a rather striking proportion of the Chinese Christians of F oochow were on the mission payrolls. In the American Board mission, the number of Chinese helpers grew from 6 in 1863 to 21 in 1869, by which time one out of every five of the American Board converts was a helper. 23 The expansion of native help by the Methodists and CMS was even more amazing. In 1862 the Methodists had 7 helpers. By 1869 they had 13 full-time helpers and 36 student helpers, who helped part-time and engaged in Biblical studies part-time. In 1875, the Methodists claimed 30 Chinese preachers and 35 preachers on trial. 24 The CMS, whose first fruits had come relatively late, was somewhat slower in getting started, hiring its first helper only in 1862. 25 The employment of a large number of Chinese by the CMS was largely the work of one of the more important missionaries in the history of Protestant work in Foochow, John R. Wolfe, who had arrived in Foochow in 1862 and became the dominating

80 personality in the mission with George Smith's death in 1863. Wolfe went to work with great energy and created, almost overnight it seemed, a large native agency capable of manning stations in Foochow and in an incredible number of outstations. "We can no longer keep our native Christians in the background," he wrote in 1867. "We must send them forth in the name of God to tell their countrymen the simple message which has brought peace to their own souls." 26 As early as 1868 he had 27 native helpers, and by 1877 the mission had 93 paid catechists and twice as many "volunteer exhorters." 27 Wolfe's accomplishments in this respect were so rapid that missionaries in both his own and other missions had serious doubts, to say the least, about whether his helpers were sufficiently trained or tested for the responsibilities they were given. 28 At best the missionaries had rather uneasy consciences about their heavy reliance on the helpers. One of the more animated discussions at the big Shanghai conference of Protestant missionaries from all over China in 1877 was the question of the use of native helpers, and one of the two papers submitted on the question was written by Nathan Sites, Methodist missionary in Foochow. 29 Many questions arose. Had the helpers, many of whom had been employed shortly after their baptism, really been called by God to proclaim the gospel? Was it right for a missionary to employ natives to do what they should be called by God to do? What about the sincerity of the helpers? Wouldn't their hearers think they were repeating the missionary's words in return for eating the missionary's rice? If the missionaries paid native helpers, would the native church ever take over the responsibility for their financial support? The uneasiness of the missionaries was enhanced by actual experiences. Every now and then it became evident that a helper was lacking in ability or character, and from time to time they were dismissed or disciplined for such lapses as going into debt, adultery, dishonesty in the handling of mission funds, or insubordination. In some cases the missionaries simply reported that they had dismissed helpers without giving the reasons. 30 The following incident related by Peet must have raised questions about the "calling" of helpers:

81 The recent graduates from our boarding school after entering our service as helpers sought employment in the Chinese Arsenal in order to get higher wages, but being refused, went off rather quietly to their stations, supposing that we knew nothing about the matter. 31 This expansion of the native agency appears to have had some interesting economic consequences. More precisely, it appears that rapid employment of Chinese helpers was accompanied for a time by a rise in the salaries paid. This in tum appears to have been associated with competition among the missions for a limited supply of helpers. In 1863 Wolfe wrote of a CMS convert who had gone to the Methodists as a helper. 32 There is no doubt that the CMS took some of the Methodist helpers, including the very able Wong Kin-taik, who was to be tremendously important in the CMS's subsequent successes. One of the Methodist helpers who became an ordained pastor wrote that Wong Kin-taik had left the Methodists because he disagreed with some of the missionaries over the terms question; he goes on to say that "Under cover of the same excuse a few others followed Kin-taik." 33 One wonders whether these helpers would have found the disagreement over terms unbearable if alternative employment had not been available. In 1869 Peet complained that the CMS had just given a newly ordained man (Wong Kin-taik) $15 per month, twice the highest salary paid by the American Board. 34 Competition for qualified men was not confined to mission circles. In 1866 a government school, apparently at the Foochow Arsenal, employed one of the American Board helpers and was expected to take two of the Methodists' helpers. 35 In 1869 the· American Board reduced the salaries of the Chinese helpers, thereby initiating a change of policy in which they were subsequently joined by the other missions. Financial stringency of the mission may have been a factor in the situation, but the main purpose seems to have been to show "all that it is not intended to tempt men to labor in this work by large salaries, or to enable helpers to live in. a more expensive style than their countrymen of like classes can afford." 36 The helpers sent in ajoint letter of resignation and stayed away from a scheduled examation. Although their resignations were promptly accepted, they subsequently accepted the reduced salaries and returned. Apparently the other missions cooperated by not offering

82 them employment. 37 Hartwell of the American Board reported that "It is with gratitude to God that we inform you that there is now such a state of feeling among the missions here that we can act independently and not fear that disaffected helpers will be taken up by other missions without our consent. We can do this year what we could not have done last year and acted wisely. " 38 In 18 70-18 71 the other two missions reduced their salary scales to about the American Board level. 39 That some of the helpers were unworthy and that they could be influenced by financial considerations is not surprising. Nor does it prove anything about the great majority of the helpers. From thousands of comments in the missionary sources concerning helpers individually and generally, it appears that most of them were sincere and devoted workers. However that may be, there can be no doubt about the fact that the helpers became the main carriers of the Christian message. The fact that they had not had Biblical and theological training equivalent to what missionaries had had in England and America was more than compensated for by their knowledge of the language and culture of the people to whom they preached, to say nothing of their being Chinese, not foreigners or "foreign devils." Given Chinese culturalism and antiforeignism, if the Protestant missionaries of the nineteenth century were not willing to permit accommodations between their faith and the Chinese cultural tradition (as the Jesuits had done in the seventeenth century), it was essential that their spokesmen be Chinese. There seems to be no reason to doubt the missionaries' judgment that use of native helpers was a major factor in their success in getting the Christian message heard, understood, and by some, accepted. 40 As these large staffs of helpers were formed, and as they proved unquestionably successful in speeding up the growth of the Christian community, the work of the European and American missionaries underwent important changes, with less of their time devoted to work in chapels and preaching, and more time given over to training and supervising the helpers. Early in the sixties, one of the Methodist missionary magazines observed that: The native men are there today who shall be raised up by our missionary apostles to China to become apostles to their countrymen. We must

83 furnish the officers for the great enterprise, and the Chinese must furnish the rank and file. This is being done, and the church will stand by her apostolic mission in China. 41 Through the period of this study, the missionaries continued to be the higher officers, maintaing a superiority based, it would appear, on a number of things: their longer experience in the faith, their superior theological training, their connection with the resources of the missionary societies at home. With the development of churches and ecclesiastical organization, the native helpers became a native clergy and might even be moved into positions nominally as high as those occupied by the missionaries, but the missionaries still had the upper hand. Before the period of this study was over, the differing polities of the American and English churches represented by the missions in Foochow brought about 9ifferences in the organizational arrangements for supervision of helpers, clergy, and churches. In the meantime, however, there was a good deal of similarity in the efforts of the three missions to oversee the work of the helpers. All would plan to visit the helpers and examine their work; among other things this involved examining and instructing the enquirers and candidates for baptism among whom the helpers had aroused an interest in Christianity. In cases in which it seemed that the candidates had been sufficiently instructed and tested, the missionary would baptize them. When the number of missionaries allowed it, there would usually be a division of their labor. One might oversee helpers and churches in Nantai and part of the outstations, while another took charge of the walled city and other outstations, and still another devoted his main attention to the instruction of future helpers. 42 The Methodists, with the growth of their mission and work, and with their penchant for hierarchical organization, soon had elaborate organizational charts with circuits, districts, and local churches or preaching places. But beneath it all was the rather simple fact that missionaries were supervising a native agency instead of devoting their time to direct evangelization. The Methodist tradition of "itinerating" provided a handy support in Christian tradition for this supervisory role. In addition to itinerating, the missionaries also called the helpers in to Foochow, or other centers, for various kinds of gatherings. All the missions


held quarterly and annual meetings, at which the helpers were examined on assigned portions of Scripture and the missionaries and helpers discussed work experiences and problems. 43 At a quarterly examination of the American Board in 1865, subjects discussed included the keeping of the Sabbath, ways in which Chinese marriage and burial ceremonies were consistent and inconsistent with Christianity, the definition of sin, the work of the Holy Spirit, Old Testament predictions of the coming of Jesus, and the nature of faith. 44 It should be noted that the helpers were not always docile recipients of the missionaries' wisdom. In the discussions just referred to, they argued rather stubbornly against certain aspects of the Christian marriage ceremony, pointing out that these were repugnant to Chinese taste and had no Scriptural basis. The missionaries were generally pleased with the performance of the helpers in these periodic examinations. C. C. Baldwin wrote after the annual examination in 1871: "We feel more sensibly than ever before that such yearly recurring occasions are invaluable. The native helper improves, not only in Biblical and other useful knowledge, but in the art of close thinking and power in debate." 45 As the helpers grew in knowledge and experience, and with the growth of churches needing pastors qualified to administer the sacraments, the missions arranged for the ordination of some of the better helpers. In this connection, the Bishop of Hong Kong made occasional visits to Foochow, and bishops of the Methodist Church came from the United States. 46 The system of requiring the helpers to study while they were already employed and submit to periodic examinations reflected the fact that the early helpers had not had much training before they started work. As time went along, however, and as the importance of the Chinese helpers became increasingly evident, all the missions established regular training programs with rather comprehensive curricula for the young men who were expected to become helpers. These programs had rather modest beginnings. In 1863 Wolfe wrote of giving two students a systematic Bible course in preparation for their becoming helpers. 47 The next year the American Board mission reported that Hartwell had a class of three young men, who spent half the time studying, and half the time in active labor. 48 The American Board mission was the first to establish a real "training school" for helpers. Directed

85 by Woodin, it grew from 5 students in 1865 to 10 in 1866, and 17 in 1867, who enrolled for a course of four or five years. In 1869 the first group of boys finished and were employed as helpers. From that time enrollment was limited to converts who wanted to enter the Christian ministry. In 1871 the school was put on a somewhat different basis: the students studied for half the year and worked as student helpers the other half.49 The Methodists established a training school for candidates for the ministry in 1868; then, feeling that they must get the young men out into the field immediately, they suspended it for a time. It was reopened in 1873 and came to be most commonly known as the "Biblical Institute." It had 11 students in 1874, 15 in 1879. In that year the term of study was extended to four years. so As would be expected in view of their rapid development of a large native agency, the CMS instituted large programs for the training of helpers. In 1868, Wolfe reported that the mission had 15 "seminarists." In 1875 there were 20 students in what was called a "theological school." By 1877, 39 young men, between the ages of seventeen and thirty and recruited from among the mission's "volunteer exhorters," were enrolled in what was now called a college. Its curriculum included both Biblical and Chinese studies. The Reverend Mr. Robert Stewart, who had come out to China in 1876, was in charge, though the institution also had a native principal, a man who had had a Chinese literary degree before becoming a Christian. 51 In addition to the training schools for helpers, the three missions continued to run day schools and boarding schools. In many respects these schools were continuations and extensions of school work that had begun in the forties and fifties, but they also reflected the growth of mission work, particularly in the outstations, and the emphasis on the native agency. The day schools were less stable than the boarding schools, and their numbers as reported by individual missions tended to fluctuate rather widely. 52 But at any given time, the total number of pupils enrolled in schools run by the three missions was always substantial. In 1869, for example, the total was 434 pupils. 53 The majority of these schools were in the outstations, reflecting not only their growth, but also the fact that

86 literacy there was relatively low, which made instruction in reading necessary if the converts were to be able to read the Scriptures. 54 One very noticeable change, by comparison with the forties and fifties, was the larger proportion of girls' schools, 55 a fact which reflected the interests and efforts of several unmarried women missionaries who came out to Foochow with the main purpose of educating Chinese girls. 56 Another change was an increase in the proportion of women and Christians among the Chinese teachers of these schools, the explanation of this being the employment as teachers of a number of graduates of the girl's boarding schools. 57 Boarding schools continued to be important in the work of the Foochow missions in the 1860s and 1870s. There was more continuity of effort in the girls' boarding schools than in the boys', evidence of the importance of women like the Misses Woolston and Payson. The American Board girls' boarding school had its beginnings in 1863. By 1867 it had 20 girls, and in 1873 it had 30. 58 The Methodist girls' boarding school, founded by the Woolstons in 1859, had 15 girls in 1862, 26 in 1866, 30 in 1877. 59 The first effort of the CMS to establish a girls' boarding school in 1861 had to be given up the next year because of the illness of Mrs. George Smith. A school was begun again in the seven ties, which had 23 girls in 18 77. 60 From the outset, the most important reason for having girls' boarding schools was to provide Christian wives for Chinese helpers. It was considered necessary that the helpers should marry and highly important that their wives be Christians rather than heathens. 61 Young men in the Methodist Biblical Institute wanted to marry girls in the Methodist boarding school so badly that it was hard to keep the girls in school until their education was completed. 62 The hope that the girls would marry the Chinese helpers complicated recruitment of students for the girls' boarding schools, for many of the girls who might be willing to enroll in the school were already betrothed. In order to solve this problem the American Board mission agreed to pay $20 for the exclusive right of betrothing any girl who proved a suitable candidate for membership in the school. As of 1867 the mission had admitted six girls on this basis. 63 The existence of the Methodist Foundling Asylum between 1858 and 1869 alleviated the problem for the Methodists, since many of the girls whom

87 they took in as foundlings became students in the boarding school. In 1872, 19 out of 28 girls in the school had been foundlings. 64 Another stated purpose of the girls' boarding schools was the preparation of teachers. 65 The marrying of boarding school girls to native helpers and employment of some of them as teachers were not mutually exclusive developments, since a helper's wife might serve as a teacher. Both developments relate closely to the fact that a growing proportion of the girls in the boarding schools were Christians. In 1871, 25 out of 28 students in the Methodist girls' boarding school had been baptized. 66 The boys' boarding schools lacked the continuity of the girls' schools. The American Board ran one from 1864 until 1870, then again from 1871 on, but it was smaller than the girls' boarding school, with an enrollment of only 15 boys in 1878. 67 The Methodists had started a boys' boarding school in 1856, but in 1869 it was transformed into a training school for helpers, and for a time after that the Methodists did not have a regular boys' boarding school. Eventually they established another one, however, calling it a boys' "high school." It hadl2 students in 1877. 68 The CMS had a boys' boarding school in the late sixties, but it appears to have lapsed about 1870 or 1871, to be revived by Wolfe in 1876. 69 By the end of the 1870s the purpose of the boys' boar~ing schools had become quite different from that of the first boarding schools in the 1850s. Originally they had been regarded as a means of bringing boys under intensive Christian influence, in the hope that some would be baptized and some would become helpers. By the end of the 18 70s, it was still the hope that boys in the boarding schools would elect to become helpers; by this time, however, most of the boys admitted to the schools were already Christians, primarily sons of helpers. 70 The 1870s were a turning point in the history of missionarv medical work in Foochow. It is true that in the early years of the missions, there had been medical men in Foochow: White, Welton, and Wiley. After Welton's departure in 1856, however, none of the missions had a doctor until 1870. The man who was most responsible for making medical practice a secure, fully accepted part of the work in Foochow was Dr. D.W. Osgood, an M.D. from the University of New York, who came to Foochow in 1870 at the age of twenty-five for the American Board. 71 The sources do not give the

88 slightest reason for suspecting that Osgood doubted the usual missionary supposition that the cure of bodies was less important then the cure of souls. But in the words of one of his colleagues, "he became engrossed thoroughly in his profession as a healer of bodily ailments." 72 Shortly after his arrival in Foochow, Osgood started to practice parttime, as he went to work on the language. Before long he was treating tremendous numbers of patients in the dispensaries set up in connection with churches in Nantai and in the city and in a temporary hospital. In 1878 a new fifty-bed hospital was completed with funds largely contributed by foreign businessmen in the port, Chinese merchants, and Chinese officials. The old building was then turned into an opium asylum. Osgood worked in Foochow a little more than ten years, until 1880 when he died at the age of only thirty-five. During that period he saw more than 50,000 patients. In the later years of his practice, he became deeply interested in the treatment of opium addicts, devising a program of treatment which enabled his patients to overcome addiction in a large majority of cases. About sixty people a month applied for the opium treatment, and by 1880 he had given it to some 1500 patients. After Osgood's death his work was carried on by Dr. Henry T. Whitney, who had previously practiced in the American Board outstation in Shaewu. 73 Another important figure in the establishment of missionary medical work in Foochow was Miss Sigourney Trask, M.D., who joined the Methodist mission in 1874. Like Osgood, Miss Trask devoted herself to medical work. Her practice was limited to women and children, for whom the Methodists opened a hospital in 1877. Again there were contributions from foreign and Chinese residents of Foochow, including officials. The provincial governor, the salt commissioner, and the grain commissioner attended the opening 74 ceremonies. Miss Trask was joined by Miss Julia Sparr, M.D., in 1878. In the accounts of the medical work of Doctors Osgood and Trask two things stand out. One is that their practice was closely related to the evangelistic work of the missions. Although this second generation of missionary doctors devoted most of their time and effort to healing the sick, other people connected with the missions also saw their patients. In waiting rooms and wards other missionaries and Chinese helpers addressed the patients


concerning their spiritual needs. Being an in-patient for an extended period in a mission hospital brought with it extended exposure to Christian indoctrination. 75 This is not to say, however, that medical work was only a means for getting a hearing for Christianity. Osgood and Trask were dedicated doctors, who were concerned to relieve suffering and save life, and they were convinced that China had need of Western medical knowledge. The day before his death, Osgood completed a five-volume translation into Chinese of a standard work on anatomy. 76 Also noteworthy is the good will which the missions earned by the medical work. The practices of Doctors Osgood and Trask reached all classes of Chinese. Neither the religious indoctrination which went with medical care nor the old myths about foreigners taking Chinese eyes prevented prominent Chinese, including high officials, from contributing money to the hospitals or from honoring the missionary doctors. 77 When Osgood was being buried, one of the Chinese present at the cemetery said, "When you 78 erect a tomb-stone, put on a Chinese inscription as well as a foreign one." One of the problems of the Foochow missionaries had been their failure to attract the support or good will of Chinese in high places; and one is tempted to wonder whether the history ofmissionary work in Foochow might not have been a little less stormy if there had been a dozen Osgoods and a dozen Trasks. Self-Support Even though non-Christian Chinese officials and merchants saw the value of Western hospitals and were willing to contribute to them, the missionaries were generally unsuccessful in.their efforts to get Chinese support, even from their converts, for the little churches that they had founded in Foochow and in the outstations. Once a fairly large and expensive native agency was created, extensive properties acquired, and various institutions built up, the question arose as to whether the missionary societies would or should continue to cover the whole cost. The problem became more insistent as churches were organized and were served by native pastors. Shouldn't the Chinese church contribute toward the cost of renting and maintaining its building? Shouldn't it pay the salary of its preacher, or at least contribute

90 to it? Since the societies at home were in a continued state of financial pinch as their missions all over the world called for more men and money, the question was partly economic; but it also involved the well-being of the native church. Could a Chinese church which depended on foreign support ever become vigorous and self-propagating? Could it enjoy self-respect or escape the taunts that the Christians parroted the missionaires' words because they at the missionaries' rice? David R. Heise, a sociologist, in an article entitled "Sociology of Missions," has set forth some hypotheses which shed light on the question. What Heise refers to as the "concentrated" or "personalistic" missionary strategy describes reasonably well the essence of the Foochow missionaries' approach. He writes: 79 In the concentrated or personalistic approach the missionary seeks out a few individuals at a time, or even waits to be approached. Prospective converts are removed from their society and sheltered paternalistically in the mission complex ... where they receive intensive reeducation ... Successful application of the concentrated strategy seems to produce steadfast congregations intimately tied to the mission and the larger church community. Critics claim that the resulting congregations are static groups without proselytizing power and that usually they are not self-supporting. Certainly on the point of self-support, Heise's hypothesis is borne out by the Foochow experience. Beginning in the late sixties the missions in Foochow began implementing policies of self-support. The general approach was one of "insisting that the native congregations, as they grow up, shall contribute according to their ability, and aiming to put the whole burden of the preacher's support upon them as speedily as possible." 80 The missionaries began to devote great attention to developing concrete plans for the progressive realization of self-support and to persuading the Chinese Christians that such programs were desirable and important. Plans were frequently revised in efforts to get better results. Self-support was a frequent subject of discussion at various conferences and gatherings of Christians. 81 The recent publicity given to the achievement of self-support by the churches of China after the establishment of the Communist regime makes


the point that the missionariys never achieved the goal of self-support in the China field. Progress was slow, halting, and very limited. This is not to say that nothing was accomplished. The Chinese Methodist churches raised $1,502.54 in 1879;82 the CMS churches raised "about $1,700" in 1880;83 the American Board converts contributed "about $80" in 1878. 84 A few Chinese pastors went on self-support. 85 A much publicized case was that of a Methodist "presiding elder," Sia Sek Ong, whose decision to take no more mission money doubtless reflected earnest conviction that the Chinese churches must cast off reliance on foreign funds. 86 In general, however, progress toward self-support was very limited, and the missionaries tended to feel that they had failed in this respect. S. L. Baldwin of the Methodist mission reported to the Shanghai Conference in 1877 that five-sixths of the salaries of their helpers still came from the mission. 87 In 1881 several of the Methodist missionaries reported in a joint letter to their board that "we are no nearer to the establishment of a self-supporting church than we were six years ago." 88 Meanwhile "self-support" appears to have provoked considerable controversy. Baldwin reported that there was opposition from the Chinese to the Methodist plans at the annual conference for 1872. 89 Subsequently Ohlinger of the Methodist mission wrote that the self-support question had "again and again led us to the very brink of destruction." 90 In analysing their failure in the matter of self-support, the missionaries saw a number of contributing factors. Once the missions had established a pattern of large-scale spending, it was difficult for the Chinese converts to understand why it should not be continued. If Christians in the United States and England had contributed liberally in the past, why couldn't they continue to do so in the present and future? To many Chinese preachers, the idea of relying upon their congregations for all or part of their salaries was a risky one. Most of the Chinese converts were poor, and substantial financial contributions would, indeed, have been sacrificial. The missionaries acknowledged their own inability to be hard-boiled enough in pressing self-support programs. They spoke of "misdirected sentiment and untimely sympathy, interfering with our judgments." Part of the trouble was that the slowest mission tended to set the pace. More specifically, the Methodist mission felt that it could not reduce its contributions very drastically while the CMS was

92 spending mission money quite freely for pastors' salaries and other purposes. 91 In general the missions could not solve·the contradiction between their continuing paternalism in matters of doctrine, polity, and practice and their desire that the churches should be financially self-reliant.

Chapter VI "BEYOND OUR BEST EXPECTATIONS" SUCCESS AND TROUBLE IN THE OUTSTATIONS, 1860-1880 The Chinese helpers were the main agency of such success as the Foochow missionaries achieved. But the vineyard in which they worked successfully was not Foochow, or even the prefectural or district cities. It was, rather, in the villages and rural areas outside of the cities. The people who accepted Christianity were not, for the most part, sophisticated urban dwellers. They were, rather, humble people with limited knowledge and little to lose. Most of the success in the outstations came after 1860, when the second treaty settlement gave the missionaries the right to travel in the interior and propagate their faith. But some beginnings of the work outside of Foochow ' and Nantai had begun before that date. In 1847 White reported that the Chinese authorities permitted the missionaries to take excursions out into the surrounding villages, provided they returned the same day. 1 Collins took a three-day trip into the country in September 1848, traveling, he estimated, seventy or eighty miles. 2 In 1854 C. C. Baldwin and Seneca Cummings made a five-day trip to the Min River. 3 In 1856 Baldwin traveled overland by the official post road to Ningpo and Shanghai; he had no difficulty, even though he met officials on the way and gave them Christian books. 4 The missionaries also began preaching and distributing books in nearby villages early in the fifties, and this work continued on a fairly regular basis through the decade, Speaking of himself and Baldwin, Cummings wrote in 1851: We have generally visited one village a week; and in every instance we have been treated civilly, while in some cases we have spoken to pretty large assemblies, who listened quite attentively for Chinese. On the whole, therefore, our slight experience in itinerating has encouraged us. 5 The Methodists were especially successful in this village work, and before the decade was over they had small classes of converts at Niu-k'eng (in Foochow dialect, Ngu-k'ang) and a neighboring village, about a dozen miles west of Foochow. 6

94 Before 1860, it was not feasible for the missionaries themselves to work intensively at any great distance from Foochow, but they employed a number of methods to spread the word to distant places. One of these was the distribution of literature to people who came into Foochow from the hinterland; in this connection it might be noted that later, when the missionaries themselves went into the interior, they frequently came across people who had some familiarity with Christianity acquired through literature picked up in Foochow. On~ of the main reasons for the distribution of books at the civil service examination halls was the desire to get them in the hands of people who lived outside of Foochow. Before the fifties were over, the Methodists were sending converts to interior villages and towns to preach. In 1858 the first Methodist convert, Ting Ang, made a trip sixty miles up the Min River, preaching and distributing books in towns along the way. 7 Late in the same year Hu Po-mi, who was beginning a long and successful career as a Methodist helper and minister, was reported to be much encouraged at the response to his itineration outside of Foochow. 8 The missionaries were quick to take advantage of the second treaty settlement, which gave them the right to go into the interior and obligated China to tolerate the propagation and practice of Christianity. After 1860 the missionaries began to visit such prefectural and district cities as Yen-p'ing 9 (long-ping), Chien-ning 10 (Kiong-ning), Lo-yuan 11 (Longuong), Lien-chiang 12 (Lieng-kong), Ku-t'ien 13 (Ku-cheng), Fu-ch'ing14 (Hok-chiang), Ning-te 15 (Ning-taik), and Shao-wu. 16 They preached, distributed Christian literature, and investigated possibilities for acquiring chapels and book shops. For the most part the missionaries seem to have enjoyed visiting places where few Westerners had gone before. At times they were pressed by crowds of people who wanted to be given books faster than they could provide them. On the whole they were impressed with the friendliness of the curious people who gathered around. Meanwhile the missions were establishing outstations, by which were usually meant places where they had properties (at first usually rented, Chinese-style buildings) and a helper (usually a catechist, but sometimes only a bookseller), and carried on work on a fairly regular basis. The first outstations, as might have been expected, were not very far afield, at places

95 like Kan-che, 17 22 miles to the west; Lang-puo, 18 12 to 15 miles to the southeast; Chang-lo, 19 about 17 miles to the southeast; Nangseu, 20 about 15 miles to the southwest; Yung-fu, 21 about 40 miles to the southwest. The missions were strongly drawn to the important prefectural and district cities, near and far. The Methodists opened outstations in Ku-t'ien-hsien, Fu-ch'ing-hsien, and Min-ch'ing-hsien, in 1864. 22 The CMS "occupied" Lienchiang-hsien in 1864, and moved into Lo-yuan-hsien and Ku-t'ien-hsien in 1865. 23 The American Board went into Yung-fu-hsien in 1865. 24 In 1866 the CMS occupied Ning-te-hsien. 25 The prefectural city of Hsing-hua became a main center of Methodist work in 1868. 26 The first in a long history of abortive occupations of Yen-p'ing, an important prefectural city about 140 miles up the river from Foochow, came in 1867. 27 The beginning of a comparable history of trouble in the great city of Chien-ning-fu, farther upriver than Yen-p'ing, came in 1868, when the Methodists rented a chapel and put a helper there. 28 The American Board acquired property in Shaowu, a prefectural city about 260 miles northwest of Foochow, in 1875, and began work there the next year. 29 Outstations were founded in various ways. A mission might become impressed with the fact that an important population center lacked Christian work and proceed to acquire property and locate a helper there. Or the fact that one mission was successful in a particular place might tend to attract another. Many new outstations developed out of the work of older ones. It might work out that people outside of an existing outstation would become interested in Christianity and would ask to have a preaching place established in their own village. 30 In his travels to an existing outstation, a missionary might become acquainted with a place along the way and decide that it would be a good spot to acquire a chapel and place a helper. The number of outstations grew with amazing rapidity-so fast that the missionaries in Foochow found it hard to list them. 31 The statistical report of the Methodist Mission for 1880 showed 77 halls or other places of worship. 32 The previous year, the CMS gave the British consul a list of 113 places where they had work going on. 33 The American Board had a much smaller number of outstations, only 19 in 1880. 34

96 None of the three missions had any doubts about the genuineness of the Christian gospel as it was preached by the others. This being the case, and in view of the magnitude of the field, it might have been expected that they would divide it up in the interests of avoiding duplication and getting their message known as widely as possible. Some comity arrangements were made, but their success was limited. In general, it appears to have been more possible for the two American societies to agree on such arrangements than it was for all three missions to do so. The most successful agreement was one between the American Board and the Methodists in the spring of 1865 with respect to Foochow prefecture; it gave the American Board the districts of Chang-lo and Yung-fu, while the Methodists r~ceived Fu-ch'ing and Min-ch'ing, and withdrew from Yung-fu and Chang-lo, where they had begun work. 35 The difficulties of such arrangements were soon apparent, however. The CMS, which was just getting started in outstation work, does not appear to have been a party to the agreement, although the assumption seems to have been that it would work in the northern part of the prefecture. Wolfe was resentful of the way the agreement had been made and refused to be bound by it, charging that the American societies were jealous of the CMS and that the "American brethren" had a "strong political feeling ... against England and everything English." 36 In 1867 the question of division of the field came up again, this time with the initiative being taken by the CMS, and it was apparently agreed at the end of 1867 or the beginning of 1868 that the English mission should have the districts of Lien-chiang and Lo-yuan, to the north of Foochow, so that each of the three missions would have exclusive rights in two districts. 37 By this time efforts of missions to expand the work-particularly the Methodists and the CMS-had picked up great momentum, and it proved impossible to extend the comity arrangements to other areas, or even to maintain the agreements already made. Before 1868 was over the CMS had withdrawn from the comity agreement, taking the position that its adherence had been tentative, not permanent. 38 Hartwell of the American Board attributed the difficulty to the fact that "the English Brethren wanted so much." 39 There was particular strain in Fu-ch'ing, one of the districts assigned to the Methodists. This was a place where Christianity took hold with unusual rapidity,


but before long a substantial number of the converts became quite disgruntled with the Methodist mission, taking the position, rightly or wrongly, that it did not give its converts the same amount of help in their lawsuits that other missions did. Some of the Fu-ch'ing converts, including some of the Methodist helpers, began to flirt with the CMS. At one point the dissident converts even threatened to go over to "the Romanists," as the Protestants almost invariably called the Roman Catholics. According to Hartwell, the CMS gave the dissident Methodists of Fu-ch'ing some encouragement,40 though it was not until 1870 that the CMS "opened work" at Fu-ch'ing. In 1872 they withdrew, apparently to improve relations with the Methodists, but the dissidents refused to rejoin the Methodist fold, claiming devotion to the Anglican liturgy, and the question of who should look after them continued to cause trouble between the two missions. 41 In 1878 Wolfe wrote, rather bitterly it would seem: "If the Methodist Mission will rather see 1,000 or more men and women deprived of all the ordinances of religion and proper teaching than that we should take charge of them and teach them the responsibility will rest on them." 42 At the end of 1878, the CMS decided to receive the Fu-ch'ing dissidents and to appoint pastors and helpers to minister to them. According to the CMS one of the Methodist missionaries encouraged them in this, but at least one of the Methodists was resentful. Chandler wrote of the CMS having broken their agreement, and he went on to complain that Fu-ch'ing was "our vineyard and I am not willing to surrender it to others." 43 The breakdown of comity seems to be a main reason why the outstations were started so quickly. Wolfe's aggressive expansion in all directions produced fear in the other missions that if they did not move fast they would be left out, and a keen competition developed. The main contenders were the Methodists and the CMS, but at times the more scholarly, less hurried missionaries of the American Board could not resist the pressure to move fast. In speaking of the American Board's plans for expansion Hartwell lamented: This extension seems to be necessary for us as we are situated. Were we differently situated we could perhaps extend less rapidly, and it might be better for our work so far as self-support is concerned, but as the other missions pursue this course, and the English Mission has withdrawn from the arrangement in regard to dividing the field, we are forced as it were to do something as they do. 44

98 The competition was not only for new fields of work, but also in old fields, as one mission would open a chapel in a place where one of the others had already started work. Prior to 1880 relatively few missionaries lived regularly in the outstations. Mr. and Mrs. Nathan Sites of the Methodist mission and their child lived at Niu-k'eng for three years beginning at the end of 1862.45 For several years in the mid-seventies the Hartwells of the American Board spent the cooler months of each year at Chang-lo, about sixteen miles southeast of Foochow. 46 The first outstation to be permanently occupied by missionaries was Shaowu, a prefectural city some 260 miles to the northwest of Foochow. Mr. and Mrs. Walker and Mr. and Mrs. Blakely of the American Board settled there in 1876, and they were joined by Dr. and Mrs. Whitney the next year. 47 The key to the rapid growth of outstations was the use of Chinese assistants. For .the most part the activity of these helpers in the cities and villages brought together groups of inquirers and candidates for baptism whom the missionaries examined and baptized on their tours through the outstations. This system made it possible for the missions to win some of their most spectacular victories in places where no European family could, or would want to, settle. It enabled the CMS mission, which seldom had more than two missionaries, to maintain Christian work in more than one hundred places in Fukien. One is tempted to draw a parallel between the conversion of some thousands of Chinese by the Foochow missions and the military conquest of India by the British East India Company. Both processes involved heavy reliance on paid "natives"; the Chinese helper was very,much like the Indian sepoy. Although baptisms in the city of Foochow were still few and far between, in the outstations the number of converts grew quite rapidly. In 1867 Maclay of the Methodist Mission reported jubilantly that in the southern part of their field "through the faithful efforts of Brother Ling Ching Ting and his devoted assistants eighty-five souls have been converted and added to the church."48 In 1864 one of the CMS missionaries wrote: In some of our country stations our work seems to prosper beyond our best expectations. In the district where my life was threatened during the Shan-sin-fun disturbance, it is especially so. This year nearly two

99 hundred new members have joined us, and the Gospel seems to be rapidly moving from village to village ... Nothing but the grace of God could make such a change.49 By 1880 the CMS claimed 3,556 Christians, including candidates for baptism and baptized children, 50 the Methodists 2,841, including probationers and baptized children. 51 The American Board figure was only 215. 52 All of the missionaries would agree that much of the work was too fast, that in attaining these results the missions used helpers and baptized candidates who had not been sufficiently trained or tested. Even the American Board, which fell so far behind in the race, felt uneasy about expanding the work more rapidly than the supply of really good helpers should permit. 53 Wolfe of the CMS, who was clearly more responsible than anyone else for the speed and competition of outstation development, acknowledged on occasion that the work was going too fast "for our straitened circumstances, whether of men or of money," though in the same breath he would go on to tell of being "compelled" to expand further in one direction or another. 54 One consequence of the fast growth of the outstation work was that quite a substantial proportion of the converts there turned out to be "false." The missions were not as careful in determining who was worthy of baptism as they had been in the early decades of the work in Foochow and Nantai. The new converts in the outstations were won by the helpers, and the missionaries did not have the same opportunity to scrutinize them as they had those closer to home. The result was that, while the missions happily reported large numbers of conversions, they unhappily reported excommunications as well. In 1872 the American Board cut off eleven of its members (about one out of every eleven converts). 55 Meanwhile the Methodists were pruning even more severely, expelling 74 in 1872, 258 in 1873, and 113 in 1874. 56 Baldwin of the American Board wrote in 1871 that "we are at no time free from anxious thought in reference to our helpers and others. And not infrequently we have instances of backslidings, inconsistent Christian work, and sometimes apostacy, enough to 'make strong men weep.' " 57 The Methodists reported in 1879 that "the greatest discouragements arise from things within the Church, and not from the enemy without." 58 In 1870, when Wolfe was away on furlough, Cribb, also of the CMS, wrote a devastating criticism

100 of the quality of many of the converts. Going down the list of members at one outstation church, he found that everyone was guilty, or believed guilty, of some serious failure in the Christian life. One had been excommunicated for going back to heathenism and selling opium and another for repe~ted adultery. Others, who had not been excommunicated, were charged with the following offenses: adultery, marriage by heathen rather than Christian rites, gambling, failure to keep the Sabbath, attempted suicide, non-attendance at Christian services, "going back to heathenism." In consequence, Cribb wrote, "the name of Christianity has become a reproach and a shame." He found that almost all the converts in another community had become Christians in order to get mission help in their controversies with their neighbors. In another church he found that people had been baptized after being inquirers for less than a month. 59 The Chinese officials did not refrain from making disparaging remarks about the poor character of people who accepted Christianity. On one occasion, for example, the governor-general of Fukien and Chekiang, Ho Ching, wrote to Consul Sinclair that "the converts are for the most part a set of idle vagabonds who, being unable to gain their living in an honest manner, embrace Christianity as a means of subsistence." He went on to acknowledge that there were good converts, but added that all converts were given a bad name because of the large number of false ones. 60 What the Chinese officials and gentry may not have realized was the extent to which the missions worked to weed out false converts and the extent to which "vagabonds" might be changed under the intensive influence of missionaries and other Chinese converts. For the most part these outstation converts were poor, unsophisticated people. Indicative of this was the great satisfaction of the missionaries when occasionally they did win a "literary man." In 1878 Plumb of the Methodist mission commented on the ignorance of many Christians, especially the women, stemming from their inability to read. 61 After making a tour of some 300 miles around the CMS outstations in 1876, the Bishop of Hong Kong, in commenting on the converts, remarked about the "ignorance of most of those who were admitted, and the apparent hopelessness of teaching them." He reported that Wolfe had told him that there were "not half a

101 dozen literary men amongst all his converts." He also deplored the dirtiness of the converts and their chapels, and was much distressed at the eating of peanuts during services. Finally, he admonished that "Church-either during the time of service or not-is not the place for attending to the necessities of their babies. " 62 There was, however, a close relationship between the poverty and lack of sophistication of most of the converts and their willingness to accept Christianity. These were the people to whom the Confucian order had offered least and to whom the Christian message and the fellowship of the Christian community offered most. As in Biblical times it was the poor and the despised who "heard Him gladly." Such people could be reached and influenced more easily in the villages and smaller towns than in Foochow and the prefectural and district cities. In the more rural areas, the opposition of the gentry was less organized, and China's own "great tradition" was less strong and appealing than in the urban centers. Bishop Burdon was impressed with the fact that "even in the country where the head-quarters happen to be in a city, the converts mostly, if not altogether, come from outside the walls, and not from inside." 63 The American Board reported that "the fields of most promise are the out-stations in the rural sections, away from the influence of a foreign civilization." 64 Wolfe pointed out that in the outstations the big gains were in the villages and smaller towns. To make the point, he took the example of Ning-te, remarking that the city "itself presents very little encouragement. The city congregation is composed solely of converts from the surrounding villages." 65 Similarly, the CMS church in the district city of Lo-yuan was made up of people from the surrounding villages. 66 The fact that the outstations were successful is not to say that they were universally welcomed. Opposition was widespread, coming, as in Foochow, mainly from the gentry. In the outstations as in Foochow there was frequent difficulty in getting buildings and land. It might take years to get into a particular walled city. Even if the resistance against renting or selling property could be overcome, on many occasions it would still be uncertain whether the mission concerned could actually take and keep possession. Once the presence of the helper or missionary had been established, obstacles to successful preaching

102 arose. And when these obstacles had been overcome and converts were won, opposition continued, and the missionaries began telling their consuls in Foochow and the societies at home of persecutions of the Christians in the outstations. Except in a few cases which became the subjects of high level negotiations, our main source of information for most of these persecutions is the missionary correspondence. The missionaries were not disinterested observers. Even though the converts, who were the main victims of persecution, sometimes disappointed the missionaries, they were also subjects of great hope, pride, and affectio•n, and the missionaries usually found it easier to assume that the converts were being persecuted becau$e of their Christianity than that their misconduct had invited retribution from non-Christians. The missionaries' descriptions of so-called persecution were sometimes exaggerated. This was very likely to be the case when the missionaries appealed to the consuls to intervene in behalf of the converts. Grey situations were sometimes presented in black and white. On one occasion, after having informed the British minister at Peking of the destruction of a CMS chapel at Ti-k'ou and the loss of the catechist's property, on the basis of a report from Wolfe, Sinclair, the consul, discovered to his embarrassment and irritation that the so-called chapel was a "hovel" which rented for $7 per year and the catechist had lost only two cooking pans and some rice jars. 67 But even if we assume that not all the missionaries' cries of "persecution" arose from serious cases of harassment of converts, and that in some instances the converts' behavior helped to cause the trouble, we have still not explained away the fact that persecution was widespread. It ranged all the way from verbal and written expressions of disapproval of Christianity and the people who adopted it to violence that destroyed property and brought bodily harm, even death, to Christian converts. If we count as persecution only instances which involved loss or destruction of property, or bodily harm, or imprisonment, it is possible to document cases of persecution in 47 of the outstations, something like 20 per cent of the total. Fuller information on these cases might well reveal that some were trivial, or that they were not clear-cut cases of persecution. On the other hand, it is quite possible that there were further instances that do not appear in the documents, for some of the missionaries were not as


prone to report persecutions as others. It should also be pointed out that at 19 of the 47 places, persecutions were reported in more than one year. In some it was frequent, and in a few-notably Yen-p'ing and Chien-p'ing-it was chronic. Appendix II lists the 4 7 places where persecution can be documented, gives dates, and indicates when the consuls intervened. The most stubborn opposition and the most frequent persecution came in the major cities, particularly the great prefectural cities of Chien-p'ing and Yen-p'ing, 68 where the situation was more like the situation in Foochow than that in the rural areas. This in turn is presumably related to gentry residence in the cities and to the fact that the cities were the main centers of wealth and Chinese cultural achievement. There was persecution throughout the whole period covered by this study, which the missionaries tended to take for granted. After speaking of persecution in place after place in his report for 1879, Lloyd of the CMS seems to have been somewhat startled at the thought that none had occurred at Ning-te, and he wrote of "an absense of persecution in this district which it is difficult to account for." 69 Persecution was worse in some years than in others, and was particularly bad in 1871, 1876, and 1879. 70 There was more of it in the seventies than there had been in the sixties, and on several occasions the missionaries commented that persecution was a consequence of success. 71 Although persecution was generally a consequence of a history of growing tension and hostility, it usually took a specific incident or grievance to set it off. In a surprising number of cases the irritant which preceded acts of persecution in the outstations was the refusal of the Christians to contribute to the support of Chinese temples and religious observances ("idolatry" and "idolatrous processions," in the usual words of the missionaries). 72 In several instances reports, true or false, that Christians had destroyed or defaced idols touched off persecutions. 73 In a large proportion of these cases of persecution, the missionaries appealed to the consuls for help. 74 The consuls were asked to take up cases of persecution with the Chinese officials with a view to obtaining an end to persecution, compensation for losses sustained, release of imprisoned converts, punishment of offenders, official proclamations of the rights of missionaries and converts, protection of missionaries and converts and their property.

104 No effort will be made here to deal generally with the question of the treaty basis for consular intervention in cases outside the treaty ports. The British and American governments had no doubts about their right and obligation to protect their own nationals, including the missionaries. They did have doubts about whether the missionaries had the right to reside and acquire property outside of the ports and about the extent to which the toleration clause of the treaties justified their acting to protect Chinese converts. It was seldom, however, that one of the consuls refused to respond to the missionaries' pleas for help. In the seventies both the British and the American missionaries were convinced that the American consuls were more responsive to the pleas of the American missionaries than the British consuls were to those of the British missionaries. 75 Much more often than not the consular interventions were reasonably effective in obtaining redress for the missionaries' grievances. In some cases, however, particularly at Yen-p'ing and Chien-ning, the Chinese officials successfully evaded the consul's demands by skillful procrastination. Consular interventions almost always gave someone cause for resentment. If the consul succeeded in establishing the point that Christians did not have to contribute to the upkeep of temples and religious processions, their neighbors resented the fact that the Christians did not assume their share of community responsibilities. Those who had been charged with persecution of missionaries would be punished, or at least restrained. The gentry who had let it be known that Christians would not be allowed in a town would be confronted with public proclamations by Chinese officials that the missionaries had the right to travel and preach, and that Chinese had the right to accept, practice, and propagate Christianity. If there had been property damage, chances were that the guilty parties, or the gentry, or the officials would have to raise the money to repair it, though there were instances in which the missionaries or converts refused compensation. In a few instances -as at Chien-ning in 1864, 76 Min-an-chen in 1867, 77 Lo-yuan in 1869, 78 Yen-p'ing in 1876 and again in 1880, 79 and Ti-k'ou in Chien-an-hsien in 1879 80 -officials were degraded or dismissed. Missionary reliance on the power of Western governments for protection against persecution and opposition has been the object of considerable

105 criticism. Some British officials at the time - Thomas Wade is a good example81 - felt that the missionaries should not appeal to the consuls, but should practice the golden rule in their relations with their adversaries and win over their enemies by the practice of forbearance and good will. Consular action in behalf of the missionaries provided a basis for the subsequent charges of Chinese nationalists, Communists, and contemporary Chinese Christian leaders that the missionary movement was part and parcel of imperalism. Subsequent generations of missionaries have joined in criticising the earlier missionaries' appeals to the consuls. The main point which needs to be made is that the critics of the missionaries have oversimplified the matter and have not looked very hard at the limited alternatives available to the missionaries. They and their converts could not often appeal successfully to the law; if they tried, chances were that they would be up against the same magistrate who had chosen to ignore persecutions of Christians, or who might be a party to them. The missionaries and converts lacked influential friends within the Chinese• power structure to whom they could appeal for help. They believed in a doctrine of the total depravity of man, unless through God's grace he should be saved and become a new man, and they were not optimistic that their enemies would respond generously to forbearance and good will. The Christians were a despised minority who faced strong opposition, and it often seemed that the only alternatives were to accept persecution and the danger that they would be overwhelmed, or appeal for help to the only person who could and would give it to them, the consul. Believers in the Scriptures that they were, the missionaries, at least some of them, instructed their converts to "render unto Caesar the things which are Caesar's." 82 Some of the missionaries made only sparing use of the possibility of appealing to the consuls for help against the gentry or the Chinese officials. But there is not a shred of evidence in the documentation of this study that any of them advocated the complete avoidance of appeals to the consuls. On the contrary, they were bewildered at their critics' assumption that the governments of the United States and Great Britain should intervene to protect business interests but not missionary rights. They felt that if trading rights merited protection, the right to engage in missionary work


was even more deserving. They were sure they were doing the Lord's work, and they could not understand why the government of a Christian nation should be less ready to help them than to help businessmen, or why they should feel less justified in asking for protection. Given the situation in which the missionaries found themselves, it would seem that the real question was not whether missionaries should ever appeal to consuls. It was, rather, how and in what circumstances they should do so. The answers which individual missions and missionaries arrived at were very different. In general, the Americans were more prudent in their appeals to the consuls than were the English missionaries. After serving for seven years as American consul in Foochow, De Lano wrote: 83 I have to say for our missionaries here that their conduct in this regard (not bringing cases to consulate except when necessary, cultivating good relations with local magistrates, etc.) deserves the highest commendation. Only exceptional and aggravated cases are brought to the consulate, and then only when their own efforts to procure settlement have failed. I give them credit for great tact and good judgment as well as for almost unlimited patience and perseverance. On the other hand, the English missionaries, especially Wolfe, made much more frequent use of the consular power. Wolfe probably asked for consular interventions more times than all the American Board missionaries put together. He sometimes made charges before he had his facts straight,84 and sometimes made mountains out of molehills. 85 However justified or unjustified the missiornµ-ies' use of the power of the consuls may have been, there can be no doubt about the fact that the practice had serious consequences. Most serious among them was the tendency of some of the converts to rely too much on the influence of the missionaries and consuls and to take an uncompromising attitude in their disputes with their neighbors and the Chinese officials. This, in turn, hardened the hostility of neighbors and officials to the converts. On one occasion, Ho Ching, governor-general of Fukien and Chekiang, complained86 that the converts had acquired . the erroneous idea that they live removed from the control of Chinese laws. They know, moreover, that the missionaries give a ready ear to their stories and that the Consul is there to manage matters for them.


Hence the audacity with which they brave their constituted authorities and bid defiance to public opinion. Trusting to their status [as converts] for impunity in all kinds of wrong-doing they have caused [ their fellow] Chinese to rise in opposition to them. The missionaries were aware of the problem; and they tried to deal with it, as when, for example, the Methodists dismissed a helper who had encouraged converts to rely on the power of the missionaries and consuls. 87 But some missionaries were less concerned than others, and the attitudes of the converts continued to be a major source of antagonism. A circle of difficulties had been established as the employment of helpers in the outstations made growing numbers of converts; as this success provoked opposition against helpers and converts; as the missionaries came to their defense; as the consuls responded to the missionaries' requests for support; as this in turn increased opposition to converts, helpers, and missionaries. In Chapter VII we shall see how these difficulties could assume large proportions.

Chapter VII LO-YUAN, YEN-P'ING, AND THE "POISON SCARE" OF 1871 Many of the troubles or "persecutions" that the missionaries and their converts experienced in the outstations were not very serious, or if they were serious, they were settled and left behind. On the other hand, there were very serious problems, especially in some of the prefectural and district cities, which did not yield to solution. Space does not permit coverage of all of these cases. 1 This chapter will describe troubles in the district city of Lo-yuan and the prefectural city of Yen-p'ing. It will aslo relate the story of the strange "poison scare" of 1871, which was not long-lived, but demonstrated in a very alarming way how quickly anti-missionary sentiment and action could arise and spread' in response to completely false charges. These three cases tell us much about missionaries, converts, consuls, Chinese officials, and the opposition to Christianity. Lo-yuan-hsien was a district city in the northern part of Foochow Prefecture, which had been left to the CMS when the two American missions divided up the southern districts of the prefecture. The CMS commenced work there in 1865, and the next year Wolfe reported that there were inquirers, adding "We are full of hope." 2 Not long thereafter a few converts were baptized, though there was more success among villagers living outside of the city than among the more sophisticated residents of the city itself. As early as May 1868, however, Wolfe was writing of persecution in Lo-yuan and in the surrounding villages. A wealthy Lo-yuan shopkeeper lost customers and had trouble collecting his accounts after he became a Christian. In the villages, notably A-chia, Christians had to endure threats, beatings, loss of property, and the isolation that came with erasure of their names from the ancestral halls. Wolfe appealed to the consul to intervene, and the upshot was that the magistrate punished some of the offenders and issued a proclamation that no one should hinder any good people who embraced Christianity. Wolfe rejoiced in the ability of the Christians to endure persecu-

109 tion, and suggested that their fortitude was adequate answer to those Englishmen who doubted the genuineness of conversions to Christianity among the Chinese. 3 Beginning in June 1869 more serious events occurred, including an attack by angry Chinese on the chapel and the house of the most prominent convert in Lo-yuan. The Lo-yuan persecution is interesting as an example of a case that turned out to be far more complicated than one would have gathered from the initial missionary reports. It is also a rather good example of the missionary's abuse of his government's power, and of the difficulties which foreign consuls and diplomats sometimes had in dealing with missionary cases. The description of events at Lo-yuan which Wolfe sent to the missionary society at home, to the Chinese Recorder, and to the British consul assumed that the Christians in Lo-yuan were blameless and those who persecuted them entirely in the wrong. The gentry were angry at the progress of Christianity and were determined to stop it. They resented the loss of influence and of extortion which resulted from the fact that members of the church settled their own disputes instead of taking them to the gentry or yamen. Wolfe reported that the gentry caused an inquirer to be arrested on a charge of adultery. They accompanied and led yam en police and soldiers who, on the night of June 20, 1879, tore down the chapel, plundered the possessions of the catechist, and seriously damaged the premises of a splendid convert, Hsieh Hsin-ch'ing, whom the missionaries usually called "Old Siek." It would take $2,000 to restore the chapel, a building worth $4,000, to its previous condition. Some $3,000 worth of grain and paddy were taken from Old Siek's premises. The persecution continued for some months, according to Wolfe, with Christians suffering beatings, loss of property, and arrest on false charges. The police put an ailing thief (a beggar, according to some accounts) at the door of one Christian, and when the thief died, the Christians were accused of murder; an innocent old man was induced by promises and threats to confess to having struck the thief and was thrown in prison. At one point a catechist was beaten with an instrument of iron; his teeth were knocked out, and he was thrown in prison, nearly dead. In the course of the harassment, the Christians fled from their homes; one attempted suicide. 4


Wolfe demanded compensation for the losses of the church and the converts, punishment of the culprits, especially the gentry instigators, release of the converts who had been imprisoned, and future protection of the missionaries and converts. Before the controversy over the Lo-yuan persecution died out, Wolfe may have entertained some doubts about certain aspects of the black and white account which he had presented, and he did scale down the amount of compensation requested for the repair of the church and replacement of its furnishings to $1340. 5 But he remained insistent on the point of the complete innocence of the converts and the depravity of those who had opposed them. In his own words, "The persecution in Lo-nguong was without any cause so far as the Christians are concerned. " 6 He proceeded to demand redress with all the passion of one who was convinced that he was wholly in the right. There were certain hard, material facts that could scarcely be disputed. Physical damage to the chapel and Old Siek's house was objective evidence that people hostile to Christianity or the converts had attacked the buildings. No one had the audacity to suggest that the Christians had attacked their own property. But the whole situation surrounding the attack on the buildings offered the possibility of a view of events very different from that of Wolfe. This was precisely what the Chinese authorities proceeded to do. According to the Lo-yuan magistrate, Lu Ju-k'un, the people of Lo-yuan had always been peaceful and honest. But those who joined the church relied on the protection of the foreigners. They separated themselves from the rest of the community and did not follow the usual procedures in settling their disputes, but took authority into their own hands. On one occasion, while a crowd of people watched, Hsieh Shun-tao (Young Siek, son of Old Siek) had forced a man named Wang to kneel before him and had judged and punished him. The Lo-ylfan Christians had interfered with a dramatic performance in a Chinese temple. Worst of all, Young Siek and a friend, Lin Liang-hui (presumably also a Christian), had gone to a Chinese temple and had knocked the heads off the idols. It was not surprising that the people had become angry and had acted against the Christians. If those who attacked the chapel and Old Siek's house

111 were to be punished, shouldn't the crimes of the Christians who had provoked them be punished also? With respect to the large claims, which Wolfe had submitted for three generations of Sieks, the governor-general informed the consul that the authorities had interrogated the oldest of the Sieks (Hsieh Chen-chih) and that the old man had indicated that the losses did not exceed twenty dollars plus a few clothes. To these Chinese charges, Wolfe replied that the Chinese could not establish that Christians defaced the idols, and dismissed the charge that Christians had murdered the thief as a fabrication. Lacking independent sources of information, the British consul and minister generally supported Wolfe's position against the Chinese countercharges. 7 The Lo-yuan case, as it has been described so far, was not very different from other cases. Missionary charges had been answered by Chinese countercharges. In making their charges, the missionaries had made the Christians too white and their persecutors too black. It is quite possible that in accusing the Christians of murdering the thief, the Chinese had resorted to fabrication to strengthen their counterposition. What is unique about this case is the independent position taken by another missionary. After Wolfe went home on furlough in 1870, A. W. Cribb of the CMS looked into the Lo-yuan situation and sent the missionary society at home a devastating criticism of the Lo-yuan Christians and of Wolfe's reporting of the case. Although Cribb may have been partly motivated by animosity toward Wolfe, his setting forth of the evidence for his views makes his letters quite persuasive. 8 Quite apart from the disputed events of June 1869, and after, Cribb was very critical of the character and behavior of the Christians in Lo-yuan. On the basis of conversations with the present and former catechists and "the Lo Nguong 'old father' himself" (presumably Old Siek), Cribb concluded that very few of the Lo-yuan Christians had accepted the faith for the right reasons. Some had done so in the hope of,getting employment, and many others with an eye to gaining the support of the missionaries and consul in their disputes with their neighbors. Cribb listed many instances in which the missionary (Wolfe) or catechist had championed the grievances of converts with the magistrate. All these cases had been settled in favor of the "professing Christians," even though some of the decisions were considered unjust.

112 The mandarin feared to decide against the Christians for fear they would appeal to the consul. Before arresting an inquirer accused of adultery on June 20, 1869, the mandarin had first asked whether the man was a Christian, and he arrested him only after having been told that he was not. Converts were successful in evading the payment of fees to the magistrate's underlings, with the result that some non-Christians posted the Ten Commandments on the doors of their houses to escape the fees. In Cribb's view the Lo-yuan Christians, including Siek's son, were guilty of having broken the idols in the Chinese temple. Cribb gave a precise account of how this had taken place. "Their guilt was too true-they have confessed it ... Wolfe must have known all these facts for the Catechist Tang says he informed him of them and was severely censured for doing so." Then on June 20, the Christians acted imprudently in response to the arrest of the inquirer charged with adultery. The catechist Ling went to see the magistrate in official dress. As he was coming out of the yamen, the mandarin's runners laughed at him, and one of them addressed him "in language the equivalent of which in England would be, 'What a swell you are.' " Something of a scuffle followed, in which Ling was joined by Old Siek's son, one of the idol-breakers. In the course of the scuffle, the Christians threatened that British troops would come to Lo-yuan, just as they had intervened at Sharp Peak. The anger of the runners was enhanced when the catechist went back into the yamen to complain about them to the mandarin, and they were determined to have vengeance. Later in the day came the attack on the chapel and Siek's house. Cribb also said that Wolfe's reports on the damage to the chapel and the house were "grossly" exaggerated. When he saw the chapel, Cribb could hardly believe his eyes, and when he and Mahood, who was with him, approached the building Mahood had to be convinced that they had come to the right place. Although Wolfe had reported at one point that it would take $2,000 to restore the chapel, Cribb pointed out that much of the damage had already been repaired (and some improvements made) for $150, and he estimated that another $15 0 would complete the restoration. Cribb found on investigation that the catechist, who, according to Wolfe, had been so seriously injured, had not in fact been badly hurt. He had been

113 hit, but with a piece of leather, not iron. Cribb himself looked in the man's mouth and saw that he had not lost his teeth. Although the catechist had been imprisoned for a time, he told Cribb that he had not been near death, as Wolfe had reported. The Lo-yuan case was the subject of negotiations between the consul and the Fukien authorities and the British minister and the higher Chinese authorities over a period of several years. There was a considerable correspondence between the Chinese and British authorities, and at one point the British minister, Alcock, discussed the case with the viceroy in an interview at Foochow. Considering all of the facts of the case, including the provocative actions of the converts, attested to both by the Chinese officials and Cribb, it must be said that the Chinese were very reasonable, even generous, in their response to the British demands. They were quite willing to concede that even if there had been provocation, the people of Lo-yuan should not have done what they did. They were willing enough to hand over $1,500 for repairs to the church, replacement of furnishings, and compensation for the catechist. If Cribb's estimates ·of the cost of repairing the church were anywhere near the mark, the Chinese paid far more than they should have. The imprisoned converts were released. The yamen runners who were involved in the rioting had to contribute to the indemnity fund. Some soldiers who were present at the rioting were punished for their failure to stop it. The magistrate, Lu Ju-k'un, was dismissed. Beyond this, however, the Chinese refused to go. They were unwilling to punish any gentry "instigators" or to pay any compensation to the Hsiehs unless a trial could be held, presumably at Lo-yuan, at which Hsieh Shun-tao could be examined together with the members of the gentry whom the mission had identified as "instigators." Without such a trial of all concerned, it would not be possible to get at the truth of the charges and countercharges. 9 The governor-general told the Tsungli Yamen that to punish the "people" heavily without punishing the converts who provoked the trouble would only make for more difficulties in the future. 10 The Chinese officials kept demanding that the missionaries should produce young Hsieh, whom they had been sheltering, so that a trial could be


held. The missionaries refused to hand him over, apparently because of fear that he would not get a fair trial. In this they were supported by the British consul, who seems to have been convinced that Hsieh was innocent. At one point the British minister, Alcock, proposed that Hsieh should be tried in Foochow by a mixed British-Chinese court. To this the Chinese understandably replied that, even though Hsieh was a convert, he was still a Chinese, that this was a Chinese matter, and that a trial in a mixed court was out of the question. After dragging on for three years the case was finally closed, without punishment of the supposed gentry "instigators," without compensation for the Hsiehs, and without bringing young Hsieh to trial. In a number of respects the Lo-yuan case was not a typical one. The missionaries seldom took such a strong stand on the basis of quite such a poor case. Wolfe, who brought indignant charges against the "persecutors" of the Lo-yuan Christians without getting his facts straight, was probably not a typical missionary. Most of his colleagues in the Protestant missions in Foochow were more careful in such matters. But even though the case is not typical, it is still instructive, for it demonstrates how difficult a missionary could be. Although one cannot avoid having some sympathy for Wolfe's grief at the "persecution" of the Lo-yuan Christians and his determination to protect them, there is no doubt that he acted on the basis of inadequate and incorrect information. He also acted with an air of moral superiority and contempt for those with whom he was dealing that must have shown through and hurt his cause in the long run. At one point, when he was impatient with the results obtained by the consul, Wolfe went to the Foochow Foreign Board himself to press for action. After some three hours of discussion, he told the Chinese officials that he would not leave the yamen until they had addressed a dispatch to Lo-yuan ordering the magistrate there to stop the violence and the punishment of innocent Christians. They invited him to have dinner with them. He refused the invitation, but stayed on. Finally, in order to terminate this missionary "sit-in," they wrote the dispatch he demanded and gave him a copy to take to the consul. While the Lo-yuan controversy was going on, Wolfe wrote to the missionary society at home: I always knew that the Chinese were a deceitful race, for heathen are always such. But I never witnessed such depths of deceit and cunning


and duplicity and lying and I must add villainy as have been disclosed by the Mandarin in this Lo-nguong affair. 11 Fortunately, there were not many missionaries like Wolfe. Unfortunately, however, he was the dominant figure in the CMS mission and one of the most energetic and active missionaries in Fukien. Yen-p'ing

Yen-p'ing was a prefectural city approximately 140 miles from Foochow. The city was first visited by Wentworth of the Methodist mission in 1858. Gibson, also a Methodist, followed him two years later, and Gibson and Woodin of the American Board went there again in 1864. During the latter visit, Gibson succeeded in renting a small house for use as a chapel, but strong opposition arose, and a Chinese helper whom the Methodists stationed there had to depart. 12 The CMS acquired premises and began work at Yen-p'ing in 1867. The next year the work was the object of "great opposition," but it was possible to ride out the storm, and daily preaching continued at the chapel. In 1869 the chape! burned, apparently by accident. In 1872 the mission succeeded in obtaining a new property, and construction of a new chapel began the following year.13 Meanwhile the Methodists had also acquired a chapel in Yen-p'ing and began work in 1868. The work was visited by Sites in 1869, by Maclay in 1871, and by S. L. Baldwin and Ohlinger in 1874. Like their CMS brethren the Methodists also reported opposition, but the work went on. 14 But the fact that two of the missions were able to get in the city and hold on for a few years did not prove that Yen-p'ing was willing to tolerate missionaries and mission work. One indication of that was the inability of the American Board to get into the city at all. When Dr. Osgood and Hartwell went there in 1870, they had to appeal to the magistrate for help just to get a room in which to spend the night. They failed to obtain a place for regular work. A Chinese helper whom the mission dispatched to Yen-p'ing later in the year also failed to rent a house; he was almost successful, but at the last minute the owner was intimidated by the gentry. When Walker and Blakely attempted to visit Yen-p'ing in 187 6, they were driven off by a crowd of men and boys, who threw stones at them. 15

116 The big question at Yen-p'ing, however, was not whether an additional missionary society would be able to get in. It was, rather, whether the two societies already there would be able to stay and carry on their work. In 1873 the CMS began construction of a new chapel to replace a dilapidated structure that had been acquired the preceding year. Some "graduates by purchase" objected and threatened the catechist, who appealed to the magistrate for protection. In the missionary version of the story, the magistrate refused protection on the grounds that the people were opposed to the building of a chapel. Then a man named Hsu Ta-ch'eng brought a crowd of vagabonds to the site, tore down as much of the structure as had been built, took away the timbers and lumber, and beat up the carpenters for good measure. The magistrate passed by while the destruction of the chapel was in progress, but did nothing to help the Christians, either then or when they appealed to him later; instead he assured the wrongdoers that they had nothing to fear. When the British consul, Sinclair, protested what had happened and demanded protection of the Christians, restoration of the property, and the arrest and punishment of the offenders, the magistrate, Wang Pao-chu, came up with a different version of what had happened. Although he, the magistrate, had urged the people to exercise forbearance, they were angered about the obscure circumstances surrounding the mission's acquisition of the property. The convert, in whose name the property had been bought, gave confused answers. When he was asked to show the deeds, he replied that they were in Foochow. Furthermore, the new building encroached on a public roadway. The people asked the Christians to halt the building, and took away the lumber when they refused. A disturbance followed, but the magistrate stopped it, saying that Christians were interested only in preaching and good principles. 16 Argument over the facts of the case, measures which should be taken to settle it, and steps to insure the CMS missionaries of their treaty rights to work in Yen-p'ing went on and on. Seven years after the incident of 1873, at the end of the period covered by this study, the case had still not been settled. In the meantime the difficulty was compounded by further events, such as the expulsion of another CMS catechist in 1876 and the posting of


placards threatening any foreigner coming to Yen-p'ing with death. The discussions involved many officials: two British consuls (Sinclair and a Mr. Pedder), the British minister Thomas Wade, a succession of magistrates and prefects at Yen-p'ing, the governors, the governors-general and the Foreign Affairs Board at Foochow, Chinese officials sent specially to Yen-p'ing to deal with the case, and Tsungli Yamen officials in Peking. 17 This Yen-p'ing case was a perfect example of how, on occasion, the best solution of a missionary case, from the Chinese point of view, was to avoid a solution. The British side would not agree to a settlement which denied the right to missionaries to visit Yen-p'ing, or the right of Chinese Christians to acquire property, which might be used for mission purposes. On the other hand, the Chinese side did not dare to repudiate the treaties openly. Hence, on occasion, the best solution was to keep the issues at dispute unsettled, since as long as this was the case the foreigners, as a practical matter, could not exercise the rights they claimed. In this case, while discussions and correspondence on the Yen-p'ing case went endlessly on, the CMS was unable to work in that city. In the course of the endless hassle, the Chinese demonstrated real sophistication in the art of raising diversionary issues. Were the deeds to the property in order? How was it that only one copy of the deed had been sealed? How about the fact that the name of the supposed owner on the deed was different from the name by which he was generally known? Why hadn't the Christians applied for a permit to build a chapel (as if there was an established procedure for this!)? The argument that people were worried about interference withfeng-shui was used for a time. The willingness of the foreigners to consider swapping the disputed site for an equally desirable site within the city offered further possibilities for delay. The Chinese officials showed great ingenuity in locating and proposing sites that the missionaries would not accept, either because they were outside of the city or were objectionable in some other way. Meanwhile the Chinese officials pressed the point that the missionaries must consider public opinion. Even if only one or two people were opposed to the preaching of Christianity there might be trouble. The officials could not chance the opinions of the people.

118 This case shows with great clarity the difficulties involved in trying to rely on the treaties as a basis for acquiring property for the missions in the outstations. During this period the British officials generally held to the view that the second treaty settlement did not contain an explicit provision for the acquisition of new properties by missionaries outside of the treaty ports. In the British view at this time, Article VI of the French Convention of Peking ( 1860) merely provided for a restoration of Catholic properties previously held. Accordingly, the Protestant missions based in Foochow usually had their converts acquire properties on behalf of the missions in their own names, the assumption being that any refusal of the Chinese authorities to allow the converts to acquire properties would amount to discrimination against the converts and violate the toleration provisions of the treaties (in the English case, Article VIII of the Tientsin treaty), even though the converts were using mission funds and the properties would be used by the missions. In this case, when the Yen-p'ing authorities argued that official approval was necessary if the mission wished to use the property for a church, Wade pressed the Chinese to explain. Under what regulation did the Chinese take such a position? How did the regulation relate to the treaties? As the argument developed, both sides tended to view the situation in the interior by analogy with the treaty ports. Wade argued that Article XII of the British, treaty, which dealt with acquisition of sites for various purposes, including churches, did not require an application to the authorities. The Chinese came back with the argument that Article X of the French treaty provided for collaboration between the consuls and the Chinese authorities in the selection of sites. Wade didn't press the point any further. What it all came down to was that, in the absence of an explicit and clear treaty provision concerning property outside of the ports, both sides could argue from the treaties according to their different interests. The all-or-nothing attitude of the missionaries appears to have helped prolong a situation in which the opponents of mission penetration of Yenp'ing were the main beneficiaries. At one point the Chinese proposed an arrangement by which the mission would be compensated for giving up the deeds to the property. The Chinese would then put up a building, which would not encroach on the roadway and would be in harmony with the feng-shui,

119 and allow the mission to use it for a chapel, rent-free or for a nominal rent. The mission feared that by agreeing to such an arrangement it would be compromising its rights and the rights of Chinese Christians. It would not agree unless an explicit, written acknowledgement of the right of Christians to acquire property of their own was made a part of the arrangement. This condition was not acceptable to the Chinese. When the mission offered to give explicit, written assurances that any structure it would build itself would not encroach or offend the feng-shui, the Chinese would not agree. Meanwhile, the years went by. This long controversy was discouraging and frustrating for the missionaries. The frustration was enhanced by their feeling that the British authorities were not as committed or vigorous in protecting the rights of missionaries and Christians as were the American authorities. The CMS missionaries contrasted the ineffectiveness of what the British authorities did for them with the greater success of the American consul in getting redress for the destruction in 1875 of the American Methodist chapel in Yen-p'ing. 18 In many respects, the destruction of the Methodist chapel in 1875 was a repeat performance of what had happened to the CMS in 1873. A crowd, headed by the gentry, tore down the building. The preacher and his wife escaped to a neighbor's house, but the bookseller, a man named Chang, was seized by the crowd, beaten, and taken to the perfect, who sent him out of the city. It appeared that the crowd had formed in response to a report that the CMS would be given a new site on which to build a chapel to replace the one destroyed two years earlier. The missionaries were sure that the prefect had encouraged the assemblage (though not necessarily the actual destruction of the building), thinking that an antimissionary demonstration at this juncture would provide another basis for asserting to the provincial authorities that the people were determined to prevent mission work in the city. This most recent Yen-p'ing "outrage" became the subject of an extensive correspondence between American officials (the consul and the minister) and the high Chinese officers in Foochow and Peking. 19 Again we see the use of diversionary issues, particularly the charge that the bookseller Chang kidnapped women and kept them in the chapel for lewd purposes, thus arousing the Yen-p'ing people to a state of righteous anger.

120 The issue of the "lewd women" did not enter into the original Chinese dispatches. It appears to have been used for the first time in some antimissionary placards that were posted in Yen-p'ing sometime after the 187 5 incident. 20 The issue was picked up and developed-wi th the name of one of the kidnapped women being provided-in the official correspondence about two months after the incident. The charge was quite in tune with the antimissionary propaganda that Cohen has described in China and Christianity. It was emphatically denied by the missionaries, and the withdrawal of the charge by the Chinese authorities was part of the final settlement of the case. In one respect the case of the American chapel was quite different from that of the CMS chapel. The American case was settled within a year, and subsequently the chapel was rebuilt and the work resumed. There may be other variables in the situation that do not show up in the correspondence, but it would seem quite safe to assume that one important difference in the two cases was the aggressive, forceful manner in which the American consul, De Lano, acted in the 1875 incident. De Lano took a tough line and stuck with it. His handling of the case was quite in contrast with that of the American minister, Seward, who was more inclined to write gentle notes to the Tsungli Yamen, informing them of what had happened and expressing the confidence that the Yamen would instruct the Fukien authorities to take care of the matter. In the course of the controversy De Lano found it necessary to justify his methods to Seward, and on one occasion he wrote: My experience in dealing with such cases during seven years residence here has shown most conclusively that a passive and moderate policy is always utterly barren of results. I commenced on my arrival here to deal with Chinese officials as if they were truthful and reliable, but experience soon taught me that ... in almost every instance where amends have been made for wrongs committed by officials or the people, it has been the result of my suggesting specific terms and following them up with persistency and unwavering determination. 21 The controversy was settled in 1876. The Chinese authorities agreed to rebuild the chapel and give their official stamp to the deeds and to pay 200,000 cash for the furniture and moveable property that had been destroyed. The prefect was removed, a proclamation was issued, instructing the people to permit the Christians to carry on their work in peace, and the charge against the bookseller Chang was withdrawn.

121 During the period covered by this study, opponents of Christian missions frequently destroyed mission properties and inflicted physical harm on Chinese converts, but they seldom committed physical attacks on the missionaries themselves. That being the case, the next important episode in the history of troubles at Yen-p'ing, the attack on Nathan Sites of the Methodist mission, is particularly significant. The immediate background of the Sites affair was the rebuilding of the Methodist "chapel" in Yen-p'ing in 1879. As might have been expected, the decision to replace the original building aroused apprehension among the people. At one point a mob gathered and drove away the workmen engaged in the construction of the new building. According to Ohlinger, "After much correspondence and some slight concessions we were permitted to complete the building according to our original plans." 22 It appears, however, that there had not been a meeting of minds between the mission and the Chinese authorities and populace with respect to the character of the new building. The Chinese seem to have felt that it would have the same purpose as the older one, and that the older building was just a bookstore, not a chapel. The mission, on the other hand, had used the old building both as a place for selling books and as a place for preaching and worship. When the new building was completed, the mission commenced using it both as a bookstore and as a chapel, and a sign with the word "chapel" on it was prepared to hang on the building. On their side, the Chinese were angry and accused the missionaries and Christians of not keeping their word. Nevertheless, the building was dedicated and put to use. A district conference was held there in the fall of 1879, though proceedings were subdued to the extent that hymns were read rather than sung. 23 On October 23, 1879, the intendent and acting provincial judge at Foochow, who had heard from the Yen-p'ing magistrate, complained to De Lano that the building was being used as a chapel. Referring to the district conference meeting, he reported that foreigners and Chinese Christians, male and female, had come to Yen-p'ing and met together in "promiscuous confusion." The officials in Yen-p'ing had found it hard to restrain the anger of the people. De Lano was asked to instruct the missionaries to abide by their agreements, and to cease using the building as a chapel. 24 De Lano

122 denied that the missionaries had agreed not to use the building as a chapel, and pointed out that a "chapel" sign had hung on the old building. He also made the point that there had been no improprieties in the chapel during the district conference; the two women in attendance were wives of two of the Christians and they were hidden from the view of the men by a partition. 25 Nathan Sites arrived in Yen-p'ing on December 10, a Wednesday. For several days he walked the streets, sold books, and talked with interested people about Christianity. After hearing from the local preacher about the dispute over the use of the new chapel, particularly the question whether a chapel sign should hang on the building, on Thursday the 11th, Sites sent his card and passport to the yamen of the district magistrate. The next day, the gate porter ( men-ting) of the yamen came to the chapel; he informed Sites that the building was not to be used as a chapel; the people were bad and unmanageable and they would not permit it. The same day the magistrate sent for the preacher, and told him and the presiding elder, Teng Kuang-yung, who had come with him, that there should be no public worship in the mission building. He denied that Sites had the right to preach, and indicated that word of Sites's visit should have been sent to Yen-p'ing ahead of him. In response to the magistrate's request that there be no worship on Sunday, the presiding elder responded that the service would be conducted very quietly. The magistrate also requested that Sites plan to leave Yen-p'ing on Monday or Tuesday if not sooner. 26 On Saturday morning, December 13, placards were posted at various points in the city, calling on the people to assemble the next day in order to seize the foreigners and their slaves, smear them with dung, and expel them from the city. The populace should then raise enough money to refund the price which the foreigners originally paid for the house and redeem it. 27 On seeing the placard, Sites got in touch with the officials. He was informed that he would be protected from violence and that the placards would be taken down, but was reminded that he should leave Yen-p'ing on Monday or Tuesday. He replied that he would do so. The next day was Sunday, the day when, according to the placards, Sites was to be seized and expelled. That morning the chapel was not opened to the public, but about a dozen Christians met privately in the reception


room of the preacher's house, which was part of the "chapel" building. Hymns were read, not sung, and Sites spoke on the thirteenth chapter of Romans, teaching subjugation to magistrates. After"the gathering Sites became somewhat apprehensive as to what was going to happen. He found that the inflammatory placards had not been taken down. The gate porter from the yamen came to the chapel and asked whether there had been a worship service. Some men who had come with him, and had entered the courtyard of the chapel building, refused to leave. Sites decided that it would be advisable for him to leave the vicinity of the chapel for a while, and he walked for some time both in and out of the city. On returning to the chapel, however, he came upon a mob, which spotted him and took off after him, throwing "stones and heavy missiles." He ducked into a house, but the crowd entered and struck him a number of blows on the back and head. One man thrust a two-pronged wooden fork at him, cutting gashes under both eyes. Thinking that his only hope was to reach the magistrate's yamen, Sites made a desperate effort to break away from the crowd and go there. But he was caught again and thrown down on the street, kicked on the head, and his forehead knocked on the stones. Some of his attackers supposed that he was dead. He lay in the street for about half an hour. Eventually a military officer, dispatched by the taotai, came to get him and took him to the chapel. The next morning the taotai, the prefect, and the magistrate accompanied him to a boat which they had hired to take him to Foochow. They said good-bye "with their usual politeness." He reached Foochow on the 17th. For some time there was concern lest he should lose the sight in one eye, but he fully recovered. Even before Sites had given a full presentation of his version of these events to the American consul, the Yen-p'ing officials had sent in a very different account of the events just related. 28 They claimed that Sites's passport was for recreational travel, not preaching. The officials made every effort to prevent trouble from the moment of Sites's arrival. They had dispersed crowds and pleaded with the gentry and leaders of the people to be peaceful and avoid violence. They had also asked Sites not to conduct worship, lest the people should become angry. Unfortunately, Sites did not obey the officials. He conducted a "reciting Bible worship." Some neighbor-

124 hood children went to see what was going on in the chapel. The missionary Sites scolded them loudly and angrily and fired a foreign gun, the bullet from which struck a man named Chen Kuai in the shoulder. The people were afraid, and many of them started running toward the yamen to report what had happened. Sites was also going to the yamen; pushed by the crowd, he fell to the street and hurt his eyes. The magistrate and prefect themselves came out to rescue him, and the next day they sent him off to Foochow. The Yen-p'ing officials concluded that Sites's behavior was contrary to "exhorting to do good" and "doing to others as we would have them do to us." He should not have preached in Yen-p'ing when his passport had been issued to allow him to travel for recreation. The Yen-p'ing officials had found the Chinese trouble-makers and reproved them. The United States consul should now deal with Sites's misbehavior according to the laws of the United States. These charges and countercharges turned out to be but the beginning of a controversy that would go on for years. The documentation is voluminous,29 and space will not permit a detailed exposition of all of the twists and turns of the controversy. On the other hand, advantage should be taken of the fullness of the documentation in order to make some points that are clearly illustrated by the facts of the Sites case. The basic question at issue here was not whether Sites should be punished for reviling children and wounding a man with a gun, or whether people in Yen-p'ing should be punished for injuring Sites. These matters could be settled. The basic question involved the future rather than the past: would missionaries and Chinese preachers be permitted to propagate the Christian faith in Yen-p'ing? The point was sometimes elusive and hard to come to grips with. Circumstances being what they were, it was hardly a question of whether the missions had a right to work in Yen-p'ing. This right was in the treaties; it had been proclaimed in Yen-p'ing, and the Chinese were not unwilling to proclaim it again. The issue was really one of getting agreement on whether circumstances in Yen-p'ing permitted the exercise of the right and on what terms. Were the gentry and people of Yen-p'ing so anti-Christian and so unruly that to insist on the exercise of the right was simply to invite disaster?

125 The Chinese would have been delighted if they could have persuaded the missionaires and the British officials that the answer to that question was a clear "yes." This they could not do. The fact was that the mission had carried on work in Yen-p'ing for some years. The missionaries were convinced that the most of the inhabitants of Yen-p'ing were not troubled by their presence, and that incidents like the destruction of the chapel in 187 5 and the attack on Sites in 1879 were manifestations only of the enmity of the gentry, not of the population at large. If the officials would only control the gentry instead of conspiring with them, there would be no trouble. In the argument over the issue of whether there could be full exercise of the treaty right to propagate Christianity in Yen-p'ing, the missionaries were surprised and embarrassed and the position of the Chinese officials was strengthened when it turned out that there had, in fact, been an agreement that the building put up in 1879 would be a bookstore, not a chapel. In the face of opposition to the new building, the Chinese preacher, without the knowledge of the missionaries, had made such an agreement. Although the consul might argue, quite properly from a Western legal point of view, that a Chinese preacher, acting without the knowledge of the mission which employed him, could not waive the rights of the foreign missionaries, there was no escaping the possibility that the agreement had a bearing on what was possible or impossible in the Yen-p'ing situation. 30 The Chinese also tried to make something out of the fact that the deeds to the property said nothing about its being used as a chapel. 31 As the negotiations for a settlement dragged on, and as the years went by, the Chinese authorities slowly receded from their initial position that the Methodists could do no more than sell books in Yen-p'ing. 32 They were not ready yet, however, to make this concession open and public, and for a couple of more years settlement of the Sites case was held up by argument on the question whether the Chinese would permit the mission to hang up a sign with the words li-pai-t'ang (chapel, or lit., "worship hall") on the building. The officials were now taking the position that, even though the people of Yen-p'ing might tolerate the use of the building as a chapel, they would not permit it to be so called.


At this point it appears likely, though it cannot be proved from the documents, that in addition to the question of what the officials thought could or should be done in the Yen-p'ing situation, there was also a consideration of the pride and position of the officials themselves that had become important. From the point of view of the officials it would seem that by this time they were prepared to undertake to protect the Christians in their use of the building as a chapel, but that they could not accept the humiliation and the threat to their relationship with the Yen-p'ing gentry that would come with an open acknowledgement, through permitting use of the sign, that they had capitulated to the foreigners. Finally, the Chinese officials retreated to the point where they would agree to the use of a sign with the charactersfu-yin-t'ang, a term for "chapel" which can be translated literally as "gospel hall," which had been used on the old building, but refused to allow a sign with the characters li-pai-t'ang ("worship hall"). 33 In August 1882 the Tsungli Yamen agreed to instruct the viceroy to drop the discussion over the name and close the case, and the American minister agreed to suggest, not order, that the missionaries wait a while before putting up a sign. But the governor-general was adamant that there could be no settlement without an agreement not to put out a sign with the term li-pai-t'ang. Two years later he was still holding up a settlement because of disagreement on this issue. The voluminous correspondence in the case makes it quite clear that the facts of what had happened in Yen-p'ing on December 14, 1879, were as Sites had related them, and that the Chinese assertion that he had mistreated children and fired a gun was an artless, but still very useful, diversionary countercharge. Almost from the beginning the governor-general began backing off from the Chinese charges against Sites. In January 1880 he implied in a communication to De Lano that the gun could have been fired by someone else. 34 In June he said that he would not prejudge the question of Sites's guilt. 35 Later in the month the governor-general told De Lano that he had heard that Sites was a fine man and that he had lived in Foochow for many years without giving any trouble. 36 A month later he told Wingate that he did not consider it true that Sites had fired the gun. 37 Finally, in reporting


on their investigations of what had happened in Yen-p'ing, the Chinese authorities stated that Sites was innocent and offered to pay his medical expenses.38 Meanwhile the American consul was embarrassing the Chinese officials with his eagerness to put Sites on trial in the consular court. In this connection he demanded that the Chinese authorities produce the man who had supposedly been wounded by Sites and have him file a formal complaint. 39 The Chinese authorities played the game for a time. They employed someone to play the role of Sites's victim, and when that man got cold feet and disappeared they found another. For a time they covered their unwillingness to have this actor go through with the formal filing of a complaint by reporting that the man was sick, and was expected to be sick for a long time. No complaint was ever filed, and Sites was never tried. 40 Meanwhile, however, the false charges against Sites had diverted the American authorities. In retrospect they were of the opinion that their preoccupation with the protection of Sites's good name had interfered with their handling of other aspects of the controversy. More precisely, in the course of refuting the charges against Sites, they had dropped their demands for punishment of the people most responsible for injuring him on December 14. 41 The Chinese did round up four scapegoats, tried them, and had them whipped and cangued. The magistrate was dismissed, and the prefect had a demerit recorded against him. But the ringleaders, presumably gentry, were never brought to justice. 42 The Sites case says something about the state of the Chinese government at the end of the third quarter of the nineteenth century. The most striking thing here was the extreme reluctance of the provincial and local officials to offend the local gentry. In a very real sense, the officials were in the position of having to balance risks. There was the risk that the foreigners would take drastic action against them if they went too far in denying the missionaries the full exercise of their treaty rights. There was the risk that the wrath of the central government would come down upon them if they failed to heed the pleadings of the Tsungli Y amen that they get the case settled. At one point the provincial officials went so far as to refuse to accept a basis for settlement which the Tsungli Yamen had worked out with the American

128 minister and had ordered them to accept. 43 The risk which the officials in Foochow could not endure, however, was the risk of offending the gentry of the prefectural city of Yen-p'ing. They could not act to punish the ringleaders of the assault on Sites. They could not agree to the display on the mission building of a sign which showed openly that the missionaries had won the right to use the place as a chapel. The Foochow officials would agree to punish the prefect and the magistrate, but not to take action against the Yen-p'ing gentry. The central government lacked control over the provinces, and the provincial authorities couldn't control prefectural cities. But to make a rather negative generalization about the condition of the Chinese administrative system is not to say that those Chinese authorities primarily responsible for dealing with the Sites problem were incompetent. Far from it. Perhaps the most astounding thing about the case was the success of tt1e provincial officials at Foochow in frustrating the aims of the American missionaries and the efforts of the American consuls and ministers. Through their handling of the case the Chinese authorities had avoided punishment of the Yen-p'ing gentry and they had slowed down the development of missionary work in that city. Their skill in maneuvering, in weighing risks, and in distinguishing the possible from the impossible was impressive indeed. In their recent volume, Professors Fairbank, Reischauer, and Craig make the point that one characteristic of Chinese local administration was "passivity."44 The passivity of the Foochow officials in the Sites case was truly masterful. The Poison Scare of 1871 Opposition to Christianity, missionaries, and converts was a general phenomenon. Anti-Christian sentiment, propagated in tracts and books, was widespread, and the behavior of anti-Christian gentry in one place must have been influenced in part by their knowledge of the actions which the opponents of Christianity had taken elsewhere. In most cases, however, the relationship between antimissionary incidents was not immediate, and it is seldom possible to document the influence of events in one area on those in another. A specuacular exception to this last generalization can be seen,


however, in the rash of closely related anti-Christian incidents which occurred in 18 71 in connection with the poison scare of that year. Actually, the Fukien incidents of 1871 were part of an even more widespread phenomenon which began near Canton and spread up the coast. Antimissionary incidents took place all along the South China coast with the rapid spread of the story that the foreigners were poisoning the Chinese. In its fullest development the story was as follows. The missionaries were supposed to have an enormous craving for Chinese women. In older to satisfy their desires they induced women to become Christians; part of being a Christian, so far as women were concerned, was fornicating with the missionaries. Unfortunately for the missionaries, they were not able to persuade many Chinese, men or women, to become converts. In desperation they resorted to a most despicable scheme to employ beggars and converts to spread a certain poison (shen-hsien-fen) among the Chinese people. It could be mixed with flour and other kinds of food, or it could be thrown into wells (or other sources of water). The victims of the poison became dangerously ill. The missionaries had a medicine which would cure the disease, but they would give it only to people (particularly women) who would agree to become Christians. Placards warning of the poison were first seen in Kwangtung. In the weeks that followed, similar placards were posted in cities and villages up the coast, and they appeared in Foochow at the beginning of August 1871. The credulity of many of the people who read or heard this fantastic charge was astounding. For days the people of Foochow refused to eat food made with rice or wheat flour for fear of encountering the dreaded poison. Restaurants lost their trade, and the retailing and peddling of food was hard hit. Various methods were used to cope with the possibility that the water had been poisoned. Wells were drawn off, covered with huge stones, enclosed so that no stranger could approach them, or guarded by watchmen. Almost everywhere people were on the lookout for foreigners, beggars, or converts who might be distributing the poison. In Foochow the panic was increased by the appearance of a runaway seaman, a Dane, who, according to rumor, had poison in his possession, and by the Customs' seizure of a shipment of medicine used in opium cures, which was for a time believed to be the dread-

130 ed poison. In some places the behavior of officials aggravated the panic, as at Hsing-hua, where the prefect was said to have stopped using the water from his well for fear that it had been poisoned. 45 In the mood of hysteria which developed, people not only acted to protect themselves, but also struck out at the missionaries and converts who were believed to be spreading the poison. Preventive action by the Chinese authorities, including proclamations denying the truth of the rumors that the poison was being spread in Fukien, as well as caution on the part of the missionaries, were effective in forestalling violence in Foochow and Nantai. In some of the outstations, however, the situation got out of control. In some cases hysterical people acted quite spontaneously. In other cases it appears that opponents of Christianity used the fears of the people in order to strike blows against mission personnel and property. Angry mobs destroyed or damaged chapels, including an American Board chapel at Tangtau in the Chang-lo district,46 the CMS chapels at Ku-t'ien,An-yang, Shan-yang, Hu-yang, and Shih-pa-tu,47 and the Methodist chapel in Ku-t'ien. 48 Chinese helpers and converts had harrowing experiences. Methodist helpers at Hai-k'ou, Tung-chang, and Ang-t'au were severely beaten. 49 In numerous places, catechists and converts fled from their chapels and homes to escape injury. 50 It should be added, however, that in some places decisive intervention by officials to protect the Christians prevented trouble (as at Fu-ch'ing and Chang-hu-fan) or kept it from becoming more serious than it was (as at Hai-k'ou and Tung-chang). 51 One of the missionaries, the Reverend Mr. J.E. Mahood, appeared to have had a close escape from injury or death. 52 Thinking that the trouble had subsided, Mahood decided to visit the outstations in Ku-t'ien and vicinity. As it worked out, however, he was there at the peak of antiforeign excitement connected with the shen-hsien-fen trouble. He arrived at Ku-t'ien two days after the CMS and Methodist chapels had been tom down. After spending two days there, he went to An-yang, where he found that the foundations for a chapel, which was being built, had been torn up. After his arrival a mob, armed with knives and other weapons, gathered around the house where he was staying. The crowd threatened him and refused to allow him to leave the house, and the local Christians feared for Mahood's life.

131 At one point a leader of the mob offered to let him go if he would pay $200 and let them have the timber that had been brought for the chapel. The leader of the crowd said that the chief offenses committed by Mahood and the Christians were that they built a chapel and that they persuaded others to become Christians. Mahood refused to buy his freedom in the way suggested, but finally agreed to allow himself to be taken by the mob to the magistrate's yamen in Ku-t'ien, the mob thinking that the magistrate would prosecute this "head of the Christian sect," Mahood hoping that the magistrate would feel obliged to give him protection. As Mahood and his escorts approached the magistrate's yamen, a "multitude" of Ku-t'ien people gathered around, and from Mahood's account it appears that he got in the yamen in the nick of time. The magistrate treated him "very kindly" and pronounced that what had been happening was a persecution of good and innocent men. But his judgment did not turn the wrath of the crowd. When the magistrate attempted to escort Mahood through the city, they were set upon by angry people, who threw stones at them, breaking the cover to Mahood's chair. They had to hurry back to the yamen, where Mahood spent the night. By the next day the excitement had subsided somewhat, and the magistrate provided Mahood with a guard of soldiers. Carrying old matchlocks for which they had no ammunition, they escorted him to Chui-kau, where he could get a boat for Foochow. At Chuikau he was again surrounded by an angry crowd; and in the situation the soldiers from Ku-t'ien demanded money from him and then left him to defend himself. Fortunately for Mahood, the Chui-kau officials intervened to help him. One of the striking things about the shen-hsien-fen troubles of 1871 was that for the most part the missionaries and the consuls were fairly well satisfied with the efforts of the Chinese officials to prevent injury to the Christians and to provide recompense where injury had occurred. When the placards accusing the missionaries of poisoning the Chinese people began to appear in August, the Foochow officials ordered their removal, denied the truth of the charges made, and promised punishment to those who spread false rumors. In a number of instances, as in the case of Mahood, they acted to protect the Christians. In cases where damage was done,

132 notably the destruction of chapels, the officials acted quickly to provide compensation. The obvious falsity of the poison charges and the fact that in many cases what happened was not related to real histories of growing grievances and tensions ruled out any possibility for claiming that there had been provocation on the part of the missionaries or converts. 53 The troubles during the "poison scare" of 1871 and the incidents at Lo-yuan and Yen-p'ing illustrate two kinds of danger faced by the missionaries and their work: one was the skillful antagonism of the gentry and some officials, as at Lo-yuan and Yen-p'ing; the other was the anger of the credulous mob, as in the poison scare of 1871. Neither of these dangers alone was likely to be disastrous. In the next chapter we will see how disaster struck in the Wu-shih-shan incident, when the gentry used the mob to achieve their ends.

Chapter VIII THE WU-SHIH-SHAN INCIDENT OF 1878 In Foochow and its suburbs mob violence directed at the missionaries and their converts did not occur as often as it did in the outstations. Although the officials, gentry,and common people of Foochow and Nantai continued tq express their opposition to the missionaries and Christianity, it was seldom that mobs formed and resorted to outright violence. When this did happen, it took most of the missionaries by surprise, even when there had been warning that trouble was brewing. The first serious instance of violence in Foochow came on January 17, 1864, soon after the three missionary societies had finally succeeded in establishing chapels within the walled city. In the afternoon of that day the Methodists'were holding a quarterly meeting in the East Street school. Knowing that Chinese women were in the chapel and assuming that immoral activity was going on, a mob seized some Chinese converts who had attended the meeting and beat them up. In the evening forty or fifty people destroyed everything they could put their hands on in the chapel; on finding the wife of the preacher and her sister, they struck them, ripped off their clothing, and "grossly violated them." Mobs also visited and damaged the CMS chapel on South Street, the American Board city chapel, and the CMS house on Wu-shih-shan. The Martins of the Methodist mission, who were living in the house temporarily, escaped in the nick of time. Finally the Hou-kuan magistrate arrived on horseback, cutting right and left with a whip, and dispersed the crowd. 1 The Chinese officials were quite willing to provide financial compensation for the property damage, but the consuls' demands that the ringleaders should be punished were ineffective. At one point the prefect arrested nine men who had been identified as leaders, but he gave in when a crowdestimated at 1,000 people by a British consular officer-demanded their release. 2 What happened in 1864 had been like a sudden squall. Although the makings of the storm had been there for some time, it had come on suddenly and subsided quickly. The Wu-shih-shan incident of 1878, fourteen years


later, the most serious and most well-known antiforeign incident in Foochow in the nineteenth century, developed somewhat differently. Although the decisive events came suddenly, there had been signs for some time that a storm was building up. Thunder and gusts of wind had preceded the cloudburst that came on August 30, 1878. The antecedents of the trouble go back to 1850, when the CMS missionaries established themselves on Wu-shih-shan and refused to surrender to the demands that they leave the city. During most of the twenty-eight years that followed the arrival of Welton and Jackson, however, the idea that they should, or might have to, leave Wu-shih-shan was a remote one. The mission not only continued in possession of the property rented by Welton and Jackson but also succeeded in getting additional adjacent ground. Welton and Fearnley rented a piece in 1855, and George Smith (who was in Foochow in 1859-1863) rented still another piece by verbal agreement with the temple priest. 3 After Smith's death, Wolfe made several attempts to get a perpetual lease covering both the land previously acquired by the mission and still another piece of ground. Two attempts to enter into a perpetual lease with a temple priest were opposed by some of the gentry, acting as "directors of the Tao-shan-kuan Temple," with the result that Wolfe was unable to get official approval for his arrangements. The Chinese authorities informed the acting British consul, Carroll, that since Tao-shan-kuan was public property it would be unreasonable to give a perpetual lease. Subsequently Wolfe attempted to make an arrangement that was very strange, to say the least. He offered to loan the priest $500, at an interest rate of $11 per month, and the priest agreed that the CMS could have the use of the property rentfree until the loan had been repaid. From testimony given by the priest in judicial proceedings in April and May 1878, it appears that Wolfe may have tried to insure that the arrangement would be perpetual by encouraging the priest to disappear. Eventually, with the help of Consul Sinclair, agreements with respect to CMS tenure on Wu-shih-shan were worked out which were approved by the authorities. In 1866 the land on which the boys' boarding school was located was leased to the mission for a period of twenty years. The larger


part of the property, including the land originally acquired by Welton and Jackson, was covered by a rental agreem,ent between the mission and the directors of the Tao-shan-kuan temple in 1867. The agreement provided for quarterly payment of rent and went on to say that "so long as the rent is not in arrears, the Directors shall not be entitled to let the premises to others." Another sentence said that "Both parties are agreed that neither shall draw back [from his part of the agreement]." Although the words "perpetual lease" did not appear in the agreement, both Wolfe and Consul Sinclair were convinced that so long as the mission paid the rent it could not be evicted. 4 Time would show that this was not a reliable interpretation. The mission not only held on to, and expanded, its property on Wushih-shan; it also modified and rebuilt existing buildings and added new ones. Thus when the Chinese-style house in which Mahood was living was destroyed by fire about 1870, Mahood built a high and, in Wade's opinion, ungainly building to take its place. Over the years the mission also constructed additional buildings on unoccupied ground in order to house the expanded work of the mission, as well as new walls, enclosing the property and pathways leading to the mission buildings. With these improvements came Chinese charges that the mission had encroached on land beyond the boundaries of the property it had rented. In the 1870s the mission was unable to acquire additional land in the city. But in the late 1860s and early 1870s, its hold on the Wu-shih-shan property was believed to be secure. Trouble began to build up in 187 6 when the arrival of the Lloyds and the Stewarts created an immediate need for an additional house to be used by the Lloyds and gave urgency to providing more adequate quarters for the theological college which Stewart was to oversee. Since the mission had not been able to acquire new ground in the city for some time, in 1876 Wolfe began to make arrangements to build an additional house on the Wu-shih-shan premises. Wolfe's intention to build the new house on the old ground stirred up opposition from the gentry. The gentry suggested, however, that if he would agree not to build on the old site, they would make it possible for him to acquire an adjacent piece of rocky ground, on which he could put up a house. Presumably (though the sources do not actually say so) a building on the adjoining plot would not have as adverse an effect on


the feng-shui as a building on the ground already held by the mission. Wolfe got what he called a "perpetual lease" on the "rocky ground," and after the arrival of Lloyd and Steward he let a contract to build a house on it. Again, however, the intention of building stirred up opposition, and it appears that the opposition was fed by the coincidence that terrible fires had broken out in the city, and these calamities were blamed on the missionary presence on the hill. The Chinese authorities insisted that the missionaries stop the building and give up the land. The mission then tried to get another piece of ground on the hill, but was unsuccessful, due to opposition from the gentry. 5 On February 15, 1876, Wolfe wrote that the gentry had tried to incite the people to tear down the mission houses in the city and that the women of the mission were alarmed. 6 In the summer the Chinese authorities, according to Wolfe's testimony, produced a document, on which Wolfe's signature was apparently forged, committing the CMS to give up the Wu-shih-shan property on a month's notice. The authorities undertook to give the month's notice, but this maneuver failed when Wolfe established that he had not signed such a document. 7 In the fall the "gentry and people" petitioned the Chinese authorities not to allow Wolfe to rent more land on the hill, and Stewart reported that he had not been able to get land for the college elsewhere in the city. 8 Late in the year a very conspicuous stone inscription, with large characters painted red, appeared on the hill near Stewart's residence; it said that the renting of land on the hill to foreigners was forbidden and warned that the people would decide on the punishment to be given to anyone who did not comply with the prohibition. 9 While tension over the Wu-shih-shan question was building up, the Foochow officials took the initiative in what must be judged a sincere and generous effort to solve the problem. To a modern scholar looking back (though unhappily not to the missionaries at the time), this initiative was a startling enough change from the normally passive, negative handling of missionary questions by Chinese officials. The prime mover was the retiring governor of Fukien, Ting Jih-ch'ang, a man well-regarded by Westerners, who had had a good deal of contact with him.

137 Ting was no more inclined than the other officials to declare war on the Foochow gentry in behalf of the missionaries. Nor was he inclined to defy the treaties or oppose the missionaries. What he did was to try to solve, on terms which he hoped would be mutually acceptable to all concerned, the problem which the missionaries' presence on Wu-shih-shan posed to Chinese officials charged with responsibility for maintaining order. His approach was thoroughly Confucian in that he was less concerned about absolute requirements of law or treaty than he was with what would be reasonable in the particular situation. Confucian considerations of harmonious social relations dictated, in Ting's view, that a potential source of conflict should be removed. The proposals that Ting made to the British consul in August 1877 started from the premise that the continued presence of the missionaries on Wu-shih-shan, particularly as they sought to expand their establishment there, was a source of difficulty between the missionaries and the Chinese community. The gentry, at least, had not and would not become reconciled to the presence of the missionaries on the hill, and they blamed natural calamities on the foreign buildings which the missionaries had erected. Ting feared that the situation might get worse rather than better. Because, he claimed, the anger of the crowd was difficult to oppose, there might be violence which Chinese and British officials would have trouble suppressing. 10 Being too realistic to try to expel the missionaries or to force Chinese acceptance of them, he sought to work out an arrangement by which the missionaries would be induced to leave the hill and take up quarters elsewhere. Ting informed Consul Sinclair that, if the CMS missionaries would consent to leave Wu-shih-shan, the provincial government would give them permanent, rent-free use of the building and grounds, located in the Nantai suburb, which it had acquired from the Great Northern Telegraph Company. The western-style building was of large dimensions and was located on an acre of ground. In addition the government was willing to acquire, and turn over to the mission, an adjacent lot, also about an acre in size, and give the mission $5,000 with which to put up any other buildings that would be needed. 11 Sinclair's response to the idea was enthusiastic, and he agreed to urge the mission and the British government to accept it. 12 Ting informed Lin Ying-lin,


a chu-jen who was a main leader of the Foochow gentry, about the arrangement. Although the gentry were not unanimously enthusiastic about giving the missionaries such generous inducements, they were pleased at the prospect of recovering Wu-shih-shan. Indeed, they seem to have taken it for granted that the exchange had been fully agreed to and that it would be carried out. Sinclair lost no time in advocating the exchange both to the foreign secretary in London, Lord Derby, and the head of the CMS mission, Wolfe. Wolfe agreed to discuss the idea with his colleagues, Lloyd and Stewart; if it turned out to be their common view that the proposal should be accepted they would so recommend to the missionary society at home. 13 Sir Thomas Wade, who was on leave in London at the time the proposal was made, met with the president and committee of the CMS in London and urged them to agree to the exch,ange. 14 The CMS missionaries in Foochow and the home society acknowledged that there was something to be said for the proposed transfer of property. 15 The scheme might, as its proponents argued, remove a specific source of irritation and please the gentry and officials. The market value of the telegraph company's property was considerably greater than that of the premises on the hill. Residence in Nantai would be a convenience in making trips to the outstations. In the missionary view, however, these advantages were outweighed by several disadvantages. The Nantai suburb, which was inhabited by foreign merchants who kept concubines, would not be a good moral environment for the mission schools. Residence in the suburb would be inconvenient for work in the city chapels, which were not on the hill and would not be involved in the transfer. The missionaries' most serious objection, however, was their conviction that it would injure the prestige of the mission and weaken its influence, not only in Foochow but also, and more importantly, in the outstations. The missionaries were convinced that their assent to the exchange proposal would be regarded as giving in to the gentry's demand that they vacate their position. Such a surrender would invite demands that the mission give up other places of work. Accommodation of feng-shui notions in this case would result in claims that all mission property created disharmony. Wolfe cabled, rather hysterically, that "to give up


Usiohsang means abandoning of entire mission." 16 Wade's suggestion that official proclamations could make it clear that the mission was not surrendering but was acting voluntarily to improve relations did not reassure the society in London on this point. The CMS missionaries in Foochow were convinced that it was only the gentry and officials who objected to their presence on the hill and that their relations with the common people were good. As a result the missionary society decided not to accept the exchange proposal. It indicated a willingness, however, to refrain from any further building on Wu-shih-shan zf suitable ground could be acquired elsewhere in the city for the new buildings which the Foochow mission needed. It also offered to vacate the Wu-shih-shan premises if the Chinese authorities would provide an adequate and attractive alternative within the walled city. In short, the CMS was unwilling to move its residences and schools outside of the city but was willing to consider new arrangements within its walls. With the benefit of hindsight, it is easy to say that the missionaries would have done well to accept the exchange proposal. As things worked out, after they had refused to leave the hill voluntarily and gracefully, they were evicted by a combination of violence and legal action. Loss of prestige followed not from acceptance of the Chinese proposal, as the missionaries had feared, but rather from their unwillingness to accept it. This was one case when an unsuccessful effort to solve a problem simply served to aggravate it. The British government should either have brought greater pressure on the CMS to accept the exchange proposal, or it should have notified the Foochow officials that because of the mission's negative decision the proposal could not be carried out. It did neither, and no Foreign Office reply to Ting's proposal was ever sent to Foochow. Wade in London and Sinclair in Foochow were both reluctant to accept the mission's decision as final. In a memorandum written at the Foreign Office Wade said, I should propose that Mr. Fraser [ who was acting for Wade in Peking] be instructed to direct Mr. Sinclair to inform the missionaries that the mission must be removed from the hill and to inform the Chinese authorities that the mission is about to give up the temple it has so long held on the Wu-shih-shan. 17

140 The Foreign Office took no such action. Meanwhile the Chinese officials and gentry in Foochow were becoming impatient. In the third moon (April 3-May 1) of 1878, the Foochow Board of Trade asked Sinclair why he had not kept his "promise" and why the missionaries had not moved from the hill. 18 But instead of warning the Foochow officials that the exchange might not be possible, Sinclair continued to hold out hope that the Foreign Office's response to the proposal would be positive. As late as August 1, he suggested to the governor-general that he should ask Kuo Sung-tao, the Chinese minister in London, to discuss the exchange scheme with the CMS in London. Indeed, Sinclair went so far as to exploit the Chinese desire that the exchange be carried out in order to get their support for another pet project of his. It seems that the mercantile community in Nantai had wanted a "recreation ground" where they could ride their horses, and Sinclair had had his eye on a piece of land, 150 mou in area, located by the consular offices in Nantai. In a letter of August 1, 1878, he suggested to the governor-general that, in return for his continued efforts to bring about the moving of the missionaries from Wu-shih-shan to the telegraph company's former property, he would be pleased if the governor-general would help the mercantile community acquire the ground near the consulate. The governor-general replied that he would help the consul get the ma ch'ang (horse yard) as a means of bringing about the Wu-shih-shan-telegraph company property exchange. 19 In short, nothing was done by the British officers to give the Ting proposal a proper diplomatic burial, and as the months went by and no word came, it is no wonder that the Chinese became impatient and frustrated. The CMS missionaries were also becoming impatient. In their case it was with the delays they had experienced in expanding their facilities and with continued opposition to their work by the gentry and officials. In his annual letter for 1877, written at the beginning of 1878, Wolfe said: There has been ... a deep and bitter hatred shown toward us everywhere by the haughty gentry and official classes. Here and there we have found a friendly mandarin, but, as a rule, the hostility and opposition from these classes have been very great, and have exceeded anything that we have known in the years that are past. These gentry, backed

141 up and supported as they are by the mandarins, have opposed us at every step, and have caused us a great deal of trouble and anxiety during the year. A retrograde policy, with respect to intercourse with foreigners, has been inaugurated here, and vigorously pursued by the present Viceroy, who is most bitterly inimical to foreigners. 20 By the spring of 1878 the English missionaries had decided that they must get on with the building of the new theological college. Since they were unable to get new ground in the city, they decided to use "a little insignificant piece of ground within our own compound." Stewart later wrote that they had not thought of using it before: "it looked so small, filled as it was with rubbish and building materials." A three-story building was planned which would "lie against the side of the hill," with the second story larger than the first, and the third larger than the second. The building would have forty-eight small rooms for as many students, and a large dining room and lecture room. Its location in something of a hollow would keep it from being too conspicuous, despite the three stories, and the missionaries hoped that it would not arouse the anger of the gentry or raise alarms concerning f eng-shui. 21 Although the missionaries would later claim that they had every right to build whatever they wanted within their compound, their uneasiness about going ahead with the plan showed up in their decision to consult Consul Sinclair and to ask for his approval. Sinclair, who was still hoping to hear from the Foreign Office concerning the exchange proposal, was not happy about the plan to build on the old property. It seems that he also had some uneasiness about how the Foochow gentry would react to the proposed building. The result was that he made his approval conditional upon Stewart's agreeing to discontinue construction "at the first symptoms of opposition on the part of the gentry." Stewart gave a written promise to abide by the consul's condition. 22 Construction of the so-called college proceeded rapidly. About five weeks after the exchange of letters between Sinclair and Stewart, the exterior walls were nearly finished. Subsequently Wolfe emphasized that the construction of the building "took place before the eyes of thousands of people," and none had objected. 23 Before the interior of the building had been completed, however, things began to happen which made it very plain that opposi-

142 tion had arisen and was mounting rapidly. In June, the Chinese directors of the Tao-shan-kuan temple, from which the mission rented the larger part of its property, refused to accept any further rent. 24 In July, the Chinese began pressing the consul to have construction stopped, arguing that the new building encroached on land which was outside the property which the mission had rented and that it did serious injury to the feng-shui. Sinclair informed Stewart that he had received five official communications requesting that construction of the building be stopped. 25 All sources, Chinese and foreign, agreed that the ringleader in the sudden opposition to the new college was the chu-jen, Lin Ying-lin, who had been agitating for years against the presence of the missionaries on the hill, and with whom Ting had discussed the exchange proposal in 1877. The reason that opposition to the new college had not arisen immediately when construction started in April is probably that Lin had been away from Foochow at that time. 26 When the gentry and officials began objecting to the new building, Sinclair asked Stewart to stop construction. One of the more appalling aspects of the whole story was Stewart's refusal to keep his promise to Sinclair. He twice refused to stop work on the building, arguing that for all practical purposes the building was finished and that only some minor interior work remained to be done. It was only later, when the interior work was sufficiently finished to put the building to use, that Stewart was willing to call a halt. He was frank enough in reporting to the board at home about his decision not to keep his promise. This was not a private matter, but one affecting our whole mission work all over the country; if I stopped work in this, the Treaty port, to please a few of the Literati, who disliked foreigners and the spread of Christianity, all over the country the same thing would be tried, and, with the action of the Missionary here as a precedent, it would be impossible to hold our ground. My plain duty I felt wa.s to respectfully decline to do the Consul the favor he asked. 27 The missionaries found it impossible to believe that there was any honest basis for either the argument that the new building encroached on land not covered by their agreements or the claim that the people were concerned about the effect onfeng-shui. They believed that the feng-shui argu-


ment was a "mere excuse of the Literati." If there had been genuine popular concern over the matter, they would have heard about it before they did. Furthermore, the position of the building was such that there could not be any basis for concern. Even though they doubted the sincerity of the f eng-shui argument, it was difficl, to refute. The encroachment argument, on the other hand, was less illusive. There were deeds which could be referred to and walls of bricks and mortar which had, in fact, marked the boundaries of the mission property for some years. The missionaries were confident that they had not encroached, and they joined with the consul in proposing that the boundaries should be investigated. It was agreed that on August 30 representatives of the mission, the consulate, the directors of the Tao-shan-kuan temple, and the Chinese officials should meet on the mission premises to investigate the charge of encroachment. The understanding was that, if any basis for a charge of encroachment was discovered, the matter would be tried in the Consular Court. 28 The investigation on August 30 did not lay the charge of encroachment to rest. The reports of the findings were widely divergent. According to the missionaries the Mandarins "seemed to be of the opinion that our right to the place was indisputable" and this realization enraged them. 29 On the other hand the Chinese governor-general reported that the building was found to have encroached and the missionary was unable to contradict the facts of the matter. 30 The representative of Consul Sinclair, M. F. A. Fraser (not Hugh Fraser, who was acting for Wade in the Peking legation at the time) simply recorded the conflicting testimony of the missionaries and the Chinese. 31 The main significance of the investigation, however, was not its inconclusive findings. Before the participants had time to write their conflicting reports, the whole question of encroachment looked rather minor alongside the fact that on the day of the investigation a mob destroyed the controversial building. The investigation was important mainly because it was part of a chain of events that culminated in violence. Although the published missionary accounts of the Wu-shih-shan incident of August 30, 1878 tend to give the impression that what happened was sudden and unexpected, reports of mid-August in the North China Herald and an unpublished letter, written by Wolfe on August 27, make it quite clear

144 that the missionaries had had some warning of what was coming. There was "anxiety at the mission" over reports that the gentry had tried to organize a demonstration, that they had set a day for the destruction of the offending college, and that a high official had given his assent to the gentry's plans. 32 Subsequently, in writing about what happened on August 30, Wolfe started his letter, "What we have feared has come upon us. Yesterday the mob came ... " 33 The trouble started at eleven A. M., when the Chinese officials who were to take part in the investigation of encroachment-including the prefect and both the Hou-kuan and Min magistrates-appeared. With them came a group of fifty or sixty Chinese, some of whom were directors of the Tao-shan-kuan temple; others were referred to variously by the Englishmen as "literati," or "desperate looking vagabonds," or "roughs." This assortment of people entered the compounds and started pushing into Stewart's house, where those who were to make the inspection were assembling. 34 According to the missionary accounts, Wolfe and Stewart were kicked and hit when they tried to keep more people from entering the house. The officials there refused to arrest the men who struck the missionaries, but they did help to calm the crowd sufficiently so that those participating in the investigation of the alleged "encroachment" could get on with the task, though the crowd "howled" and uprooted plants and shrubs in the garden. The investigation was cut short when the officials expressed anxiety lest a riot might be in the making. Fraser asked them to provide protection for the missionaries, and departed about 2:30 P.M. The officials left their interpreter, a Mr. Ho, with the missionaries to protect them. Before leaving the hill the Chinese officials reported to the gentry that there had been encroachment. 35 Ho remained only a few minutes, and then the missionaries had the mob all to themselves. The mob kept growing, and Lin Ying-lin appeared occasionally with the purpose, the missionaries assumed, of exciting the crowd. Meanwhile Consul Sinclair had heard about the ominous situation at the missionary compound, and at about 4:00 P.M. he appeared to investigate. Seeing the inability of the missionaries to cope with the angry crowd, he sent


a message to the Hou-kuan magistrate requesting assistance. Not only this magistrate, but a number of other important officials, including the Min magistrate and the prefect, appeared with a force of unarmed troops. The appearance of officials and troops was not followed by any serious effort to control the crowd, and at the end of the afternoon (5 :30 according to one source; 6:00 according to another) the destruction of the new college building began. At first the crowd threw large stones on the roof. Later they broke into the building and set it on fire. The astounding thing was that the destruction took place in the presence of the British consul and a number of important Chinese officials, including the prefect, the two magistrates, and some military officers. Some of the soldiers that the officials had brought to the scene joined in the rioting. The officials made no serious effort, despite repeated requests from the consul, to stop the mob from destroying the new college, though apparently some actions were taken to prevent the spread of the fire to the older buildings. In writing about what had happened a week later, Stewart said, without giving the source of his information, that the governor-general had instructed the Chinese officials to "let the people do as they like." 36 According to Wolfe it was the governor who had sanctioned the destruction of the college. 37 Consul Sinclair wrote rather bitterly: To me it seemed that the chief occupation of the authorities there present was to go backwards and forwards to consult a body of notables and literati in a Temple hard by, and to be guided in their movements by what the notables said. 38 The consul was convinced that the authorities could have controlled the crowd if they had wanted to, though the prefect told him that any effort to seize the rioters would only aggravate the situation. 39 In spite of the disagreement between the consul and missionaries over the 1877 exchange proposal and the personal difficulties between them, their accounts of the events of August 30 and their interpretation of them were in almost complete agreement. There were more substantial differences between the English (missionary and consular) and Chinese versions of what happened. The Chinese accounts reported many of the facts of August 30 in much the same way as the foreign accounts. They acknowledged the failure of the Chinese officials to take preventative action or to stop the rioting


once it had begun. The big differences in the English and Chinese versions were in emphasis and interpretation. 40 The Chinese accounts criticized the ignorant people who joined in the rioting and the Chinese officials who didn't prevent or stop it. At the same time, however, they placed a great deal of emphasis on the provocative actions of the foreigners over the years and on the day of the riot. They emphasized the bitterness of the people at the missionary presence on Wu-shih-shan, their disappointment and anger when the missionaries refused to evacuate the hill pursuant to the Ting-Sinclair exchange proposal, the deep resentment at the missionaries' putting up of a new building which encroached on other property and was detrimental to feng-shui. Then in connection with the investigation on August 30, Wolfe's arrogance and rudeness had infuriated the people. Finally, on coming to the hill that day, the people were angry to see that young Chinese women were living promiscuously with the missionaries. The general tenor of the Chinese reports was; that the people had genuine grievances and had been provoked. Although they should not have acted in such anger, it was understandable that they had done so. Although it is to be doubted that Wolfe's behavior was as offensive as the Chinese reports made out, 41 and the charge that the missionaries were being promiscuous with young Chinese girls was almost certainly false, the Chinese view that the missionaries had given cause for anger by their stubborn refusal to leave the hill and by their erection of the college where and when they did was not without considerable justification. Up to this point, the foreign and Chinese accounts of what had happened were different, but not necessarily contradictory. Where the conflict in testimony occurred was in the different views of the role of the gentry and the Chinese officials in the events. Whereas the Chinese accounts gave the impression that foreign provocation had broken restraints on the anger of the people, the missionaries and the consul were sure that the instigators of the rioting were the gentry and officials. Those who actually carried out the destruction were not people whose anger had broken all bounds, but rather people whom the gentry-with the officials' connivance or acquiescencehad paid or otherwise encouraged to do what they did.


It would probably not be too far off the mark to suggest that at bottom

what had happened was that the anger of the gentry and officials had broken all bounds and that they had, therefore, encouraged some of the common people to destroy the building. Several considerations give support to this view. In the first place, both the missionaries and the consular officers testified to the presence of Lin Ying-lin and other gentry on the hill during the day and their conferring with officials and giving encouragement and direction to the rioters. For years Lin had taken the lead in demanding the removal of the missionaries, and according to foreign reports he had advocated use of force to accomplish this aim. In the second place, the people who threw the stones and set the fires were not people whom the missionaries recognized as neighbors or people they had seen before, a fact which supports the hypothesis that they were outsiders who had been brought in by the gentry to do what they did. In this connection it should be pointed out that, during the trouble on August 30 and in subsequent days, people living on and near the hill were friendly and helpful to the missionaries. Finally, and most important, the fact that the missionaries had heard, and reported in advance, that plans were under way with official assent for such a destruction of the building lends support to the hypothesis that what happened was something planned by angry gentry and officials rather than a spontaneous explosion of the wrath of the common people. It is, of course, quite possible, even probable, that the role of officials in planning or anticipating the events was somewhat different from that of the gentry. In a culture which placed high value on social harmony, and in a government which had great dread of popular uprisings, it is rather hard to conceive of high officials plotting a mob action. It would seem more likely that the officials decided, perhaps out of a combination of fear of the gentry and sympathy with them, not to oppose gentry actions. 42 Knowing of Consul Sinclair's annoyance at the missionaries' refusal to go along with the exchange proposal and at Stewart's refusal to stop construction of the college, as well as his desire to get the missionaries off the hill so that he could claim his ma-ch 'ang, the Chinese officials may have underestimated the seriousness with which Sinclair would view the destruction of the college.

148 For more than a month after the riot there was concern lest violence be resumed. On August 31 a crowd assembled again on Wu-shih-shan and broke the windows of one of the CMS houses; at this point the women of the mission and the pupils in the girls' school were moved to Nantai. In subsequent days placards were posted about the city, calling on the people to rise again to exterminate the barbarian thieves. Additional placards appeared about the middle of September, calling for the destruction of the remaining missionary buildings on Wu-shih-shan and for the expulsion of foreigners from the city. The English missionaries and the consular officers were specially concerned about what might happen on the festival day on October 4 (the ninth day of the ninth month by the Chinese calendar) when thousands of people customarily went to the hills. 43 In spite of his strained relations with the missionaries and his own reasons for wamting to get them off the hill, Consul Sinclair was not at all tempted to condone destruction of English property and threats to English lives. With the support of Captain Napier of H.M.S. Nassau, Sinclair was successful in persuading the Chinese authorities that they must put guards around the mission property in order to prevent further violence. Between August 30 and September 19 five men-of-war came to Foochow, four of them English and one American. 44 The threats which had been made in the placards were not carried out, and no more violence occurred. The events of August 30 and the days that followed had been dramatic to say the least. Smoldering Chinese resentment had suddenly broken into flames as Chinese resorted to violent action to achieve what pressure and negotiation had failed to bring about. August 30 had brought to the missionaries a moment of righteous indignation; now all could know the length to which the forces of evil (i.e., the Chinese gentry) would go in order to thwart the Lord's work. By the time that the ashes of the ill-fated college had become cold, however, all parties to the Wu-shih-shan affair must have had sober second thoughts. The missionaries must have wondered if they would not have done better to have accepted the offer of the telegraph property in exchange for the Wu-shih-shan premises in 1877. Stewart must have had some thoughts about his recent insistence on completing the college in the face of complaints


from the Chinese and requests from the consul that he stop. As it became clear that the British authorities took a very serious view of the burning of the college in the presence of Chinese officials and the British consul, the "instigators" of the riot must have wondered whether their actions had enhanced or dimished the possibility of bringing about the removal of the missionaries from Wu-shih-shan. Consul Sinclair,. whose indignation was increased by the fact that the mob had acted in his very presence, lost no time in making his views felt to the Chinese authorities. The day after the rioting he sent a communication to the governor-general, vigorously protesting the action of the mob in the presence of the local officials and inquiring what measures of redress the Chinese authorities proposed to take. The same day he made the following recommendations to Hugh Fraser, the British charge d'affaires in Peking: (1) that a heavy fine be imposed on the "notables and literati" of Foochow; (2) that Lin Ying-lin, the "prime·mover and chief instigator," be deprived of his chu-jen degree and expelled from the city; (3) that the missionaries be allowed to rebuild their college on the same site; and (4) that consideration of exchange of the Wu-shih-shan property for the telegraph premises be postponed sine die. 45 If the Chinese side had had any doubts about how the British authorities might react to what had happened, these were quickly dispelled by Sinclair's vigorous protests. In his conversation with Sinclair and Napier on September 1, the governor-general tried to argue that it would have been impossible to stop the infuriated mob. He also expressed his "great sorrow" for what had happened. 46 Later, on or before September 4, he and the governor issued a public proclamation, which stated that the missionaries had encroached, but nevertheless scolded the people for having taken things into their own hands instead of leaving it to the officials to deal with the situation. 47 The governor-general and governor sent a report on the events of August 30 to the Tsungli Yamen, which arrived there on September 13.48 Correspondence between Chinese and British authorities in Peking on the Wu-shih-shan "outrage" was initiated by the Chinese on September 17, when the Tsungli Yamen sent the legation a report based on the communication the Yamen had received from the Chinese officials in Foochow. 49

150 The next day Fraser sent the Yamen a memorandum based on Sinclair's report. 50 On September 19 Fraser visited the Yamen by appointment and discussed the case with Prince Kung and others. During the conversation he handed in a memorandum listing measures of redress that would satisfy the British government, as follows: 1. Atonement for the injuries [?] sustained by Mr. Wolfe. 2. The rioters to be punished, and, above all, the instigators of the outrage. 3. If there be any doubt as to the boundaries of mission property, the local authorities, together with the British consul, to survey the ground. 4. The destroyed premises to be restored. 5. When the above conditions have been satisfied, a proclamation to be issued by the governor-general of the province. 51 As was often the case, the Tsungli Yamen was more responsive to the indignation of the foreigners than the local officials were. Even before memorializing to the emperor about the case, the Yamen had ordered the provincial officials to arrest and punish the leaders of the riot. 52 In their memorial of September 18, 1878, the Yamen stressed the importance of reaching an early settlement in order to prevent a multiplication of problems and complications and recommended that the governor-general and governor at Foochow be ordered to investigate and settle the matter without delay. The Yamen's recommendations were incorporated in an imperial edict of the same day. 53 The Yamen informed Fraser that the demands for redress he had left at the Yamen on September 19 had been considered carefully and had been found to be just; they would be forwarded to the governor-general at Foochow. 54 There were certain measures of redress that the Chinese authorities in Foochow could take without too much difficulty. It was easy enough to send workmen to Wu-shih-shan to repair the damage which had been done to some of the older mission buildings in connection with efforts which had been made on August 30 to prevent spread of the fire. 55 Apparently it was not too difficult to offer up some Chinese officials in order to appease the foreign wrath. On the recommendatibn of the governor-general and the governor, an imperial edict was issued on October 3 calling for the punishment


of two officials, namely the Hou-kuan magistrate, Liu En-ti, and the military officer in charge of the Wu-shih-shan district, P'u Ta-hsing. Both were stripped of their rank, but they were ordered to remain on duty. 56 The governorgeneral even ordered an assessment of the cost of the materials and labor that had gone into the college, with a view to compensating the missionaries (in money) "so as to manifest pity." 57 The British demands which presented really major problems to the Foochow officials were two: that Lin Ying-lin and the other instigators of the riot should be punished, and that the college be rebuilt. Compliance with either would put the Foochow officials in conflict with the Foochow gentry, and if there was any one thing above all others that the local officials wanted to avoid, it was just that. On the other hand, without meeting these demands there seemed to be no way of coming to terms with the foreigners. Once again, the officials were caught in the middle-damned if they did, and damned if they didn't. In their efforts to extricate themselves from their difficulties, the Foochow officials brought two foreigners into their service: one was a Mr. Bidwell, a Shanghai broker with whom the Chinese had dealt in the purchase of army stores; the other was an eminent Hong Kong lawyer, Thomas G. Hallyar. The original idea was that Bidwell would negotiate with Sinclair concerning the settlement of the case, but Sinclair insisted on his right as consul to deal directly with the Chinese officials. 58 Hallyar advised the Chinese authorities in their efforts to challenge the legality of the missionaries' use of the property on Wu-shih-shan, as well as their claim that they had permanent tenure at Tao-shan-kuan. Both men prepared and published in English statements upholding the Chinese interpretations of the Wu-shih-shan crisis. 59 Much more important than the help of these foreigners was an imperial decision, suggested by the governor-general of Chihli, Li Hung-chang, that Ting Jih-ch'ang be sent back to Foochow to work on the case. Li's views had been sought by the Tsungli Yamen, and he had written two letters about the Wu-shih-shan problem. A provincial official himself, Li was able to understand the great difficulties faced by the Foochow officials. In particular he sensed how difficult it would be for them to comply with the foreign demands for punishment of ringleaders and the rebuilding of the college. He recalled

152 Ting Jih-ch'ang's efforts in 1877 to exchange the telegraph property for the Wu-shih-shan site, and suggested that the exchange idea was still a good one. He proposed that Ting should be sent back to Foochow. 60 The Tsungli Yamen quoted Li's suggestion in a memorial to the throne, and the result was an edict of October 9 directing Ting to proceed to Fukien immediately and settle the case so as to prevent calamity. 61 In spite of the urgency of the instructions he had received, Ting did not arrive in Foochow until January 7, 1879. Meanwhile he memorialized that he had been delayed by illness, 62 but the Foochow Herald suggested that the real reason was enmity between Ting and Ho Ching. 63 Another possible explanation, which is quite consistent with Ting's view of the situation in Foochow, might have been his feeling that the time was not yet ripe for a new effort to arrange an exchange. Further time would have to pass before the passions aroused by the burning of the college would have cooled to the point where discussions would have any prospect of success. Chinese prospects for evading the British demand for the rebuilding of the college on Wu-shih-shan were greatly aided by the willingness of Fraser, the British charge, to have an investigation of the boundaries of the Wu-shihshan property before the rebuilding of the college. 64 His willingness to investigate the encroachment charges opened the door for the Chinese to raise other issues: whether the missionaries had forfeited their right to the property by their misuse of it, and whether the opinion of Wolfe and Sinclair that the 1867 rental agreement amounted to a perpetual lease was really valid. In effect, then, Fraser had separated the older question of the rights of the missionaries on Wu-shih-shan from the newer question of steps that the Chinese must take to settle the incident of August 30, 1878. The question of rebuilding the college would have to be faced eventually, but it could be delayed until after these other questions had been answered. Thus when Ting arrived in January, the immediate problem was the British demand that the instigators of the August 30 riot be apprehended and punished. Although the Chinese authorities had recognized from a fairly early date that they would have to apprehend and punish some of the participants in the events of August 30, they were slow to act, and it is very clear that they were very reluctant to comply with the British demand that they should


punish Lin Ying-lin and other gentry instigators. In this case the officials' usual reluctance to oppose the gentry may very well have been increased by their knowledge that they themselves shared the blame for what had happened, at least to the extent of not having taken preventive action. In a memorial to the throne, the governor-general and the governor wro.te that there were "no chief offenders who can be repressed. " 65 For months the Chinese officials tried to persuade Consul Sinclair and the Tsungli Yamen of this fact and that the indignant "people" had acted on their own impulses. 66 But the pressure to apprehend and punish the ringleaders continued, both from the Tsungli Yamen and the British. 67 Finally-after Ting Jih-ch'ang's belated arrival in Foochow and almost half a year after the events of August 30-the Foochow authorities did what they had to do. Three men, of whom two were degree holders, were found to have been instigators of the rioting, and were banished from the province. The degree holders were stripped of their degrees; the other instigator was given a hundred blows and some time in the cangue. Nine rioters were cangued and beaten. Although Lin Ying-lin was not found guilty of instigating the riot, he was stripped of his rank and expelled from the city for three years because of his negligence in not trying to prevent the rioting, at which he was present. In addition to the two officials who had already been punished for their negligence, two more officials-the prefect and the colonel in command of the city-were punished by the loss of three degrees of record. Most of these actions were promised by the governor-general in an interview with Sinclair on February 8, 1879. 68 On March 10, 1879, a proclamation was issued in the name of the high officials at Foochow reporting these punishments to the public and calling on the people to abide by the treaties in the future and to avoid taking the law into their own hands. 69' With their communication of March 18, 1879, announcing these actions to the consul, the Foochow officials forwarded $1045, covering damage (apart from the college) to the missionaries' property during the rioting. 70 These various measures of redress had satisfied all the demands which Fraser had presented to the Tsungli Yamen on September 19, 1878, with one important exception, the rebuilding of the destroyed college. There can be

154 no doubt that the postponement of a settle~ent of this issue had facilitated management of the others, but now it would have to be confronted. The least important aspect of the problem, as far as either the Chinese or the missionaries were concerned, was the question of the cost of rebuilding the college. The Chinese would have been delighted to meet Fraser's demand for the rebuilding of the college simply by reimbursing the missionaries for its original cost. As a matter of fact they tried to treat Fraser's demand that the house be rebuilt as a demand for compensation, and they attempted to give Sinclair compensation in the amount of $3,000. Sinclair refused to accept it on the grounds that what Fraser had asked for was not compensation but the rebuilding of the building. 71 Meanwhile, the Chinese had been quick to take advantage of the opportunity which Fraser had given them to prove their charge of encroachment and, by extension, to challenge the rights of the missionaries to the property on Wu-shih-shan. At the beginning of October 1878 the Foochow Office of Foreign Trade, with the assistance of the English attorney, Hallyar, prepared and sent to Wolfe a notice of eviction from the Wu-shih-shan property. The eviction notice took the position that the 1867 agreement, by which the mission held the property, was not a perpetual lease and that the CMS could hold the property only as long as the directors of the Tao-shan-kuan temple were willing to let them have it. 72 In its October 24 issue, the North China Herald reported that the Chinese would bring their eviction action to the consular court. 73 The intention of the Chinese to take legal action was confirmed on March 17 in connection with another joint on-the-spot investigation of the charges that the mission had encroached on land on Wu-shihshan to which they had no right. At the appointed time the directors of the Tao-shan-kuan temple did not appear. Instead Sinclair was handed a letter, in which Hallyar, counsel for the directors, informed him that he, Hallyar, had advised them not to appear, the reason being that the case would be tried in a court of law. 74 By March 1879, it appeared that the trial was about to take place. The mission had employed Nicholas Hannan, reputedly the best lawyer in Shanghai, to argue its case, opposing Hallyar, said to be the best lawyer in Hong Kong. 75 On March 6 the directors of the Tao-shan-kuan temple formally filed their petition, asking the consular court to ascertain and declare the rights of the

155 parties under the agreements of 1866 and 1867 under which the mission had held the Wu-shih-shan property, the nature and duration of tenancy under the latter agreement, and the boundaries of the land held under the same agreement. The petition also asked the court to declare that Wolfe and the CMS had forfeited their rights under the 1867 agreement because of "their wrongful dealings with the lands, premises, and buildings." Finally the plain76 tiffs asked for "further and other relief as the nature of the case may require." The CMS missionaries saw the petition and the charges that had been brought against them the next day. Stewart immediately wrote to the missionary society at home: I fully believe we shall get through all right. I have examined the petition carefully with Mr. Wolfe, and with fair play I do not see how we can be defeated; but the difficulty is to get fair play. The Chinese have boundless wealth at their disposal for bribery and boundless power to inflict punishment on any witness we could produce on our side. In fact it seems impossible to get anyone to publicly bear witness for us except Christians, and so long ago as Mr. Smith's time there were only one or two. 77 Even before the Chinese had filed their petition, Wolfe seemed impatient to get the trial over with, 78 and the expectation seemed to be that it would be held very soon. In fact, however, it did not begin until April 30. The reason for the delay was that Thomas Wade, the British minister to China, who had been in England on leave and had arrived in Hong Kong on March 10, informed Sinclair that he planned to come to Foochow and that he wanted to have the judicial procedures delayed pending his own investigation of the whole Wu-shih-shan problem. 79 When Wade arrived in Foochow on March 22, 1879, he had already decided that a negotiated settlement to which both sides would agree would be far better for all concerned than the kind of decision that would come out of legal proceedings. He lost no time in making his views known to Wolfe and to Ting Jih-ch'ang and the governor-general. The main force of his argument to Wolfe was that even if the mission won the forthcoming legal battle, it might lose in the long run. If the mission succeeded in getting the college rebuilt on the same site, or on another Wu-shih-shan site, the Chinese would remain hostile and might destroy another building. He told the Chinese

156 officials that a mutually agreeable settlement would be better than a resort to court action, in which one side would win and the other side would lose. 80 The high Chinese officials were delighted with Wade's attempt to bring about a negotiated settlement that would make it unnecessary to go through with the court action. They believed that Wade was sincere and they memorialized approvingly concerning his intentions. 81 In Wade's opinion the Chinese officials were not at all happy with the idea of taking the matter to a foreign consular court; as far as they were concerned the plan for legal action was a last resort rather than something they really wanted to do. 82 On the other hand, Wolfe was defensive and suspicious. To him, talk of compromise only indicated that the British authorities would not support the mission in its treaty rights. He was convinced that Wade and the consul were in league with the Chinese officials in an effort to get the CMS off Wushih-shan. He rejected two of Wade's proposals out of hand, one that the mission should reconsider the possibility of taking the former telegraph building in exchange for the Wu-shih-shan property; the other that they try to get the CMS tenure on Wu-shih-shan extended for a few years while efforts were made to work out a more permanent solution. Wolfe did indicate, however, that the mission would consider moving to another suitable site within the city, and that gave Wade something to work on. 83 Behind Wolfe's suspicions was a long-growing impression that the British authorities in general and Consul Sinclair in particular were not very interested in upholding missionary rights. 84 The missionaries had learned of the agreement between Sinclair and the governor-general concerning the ma-ch'ang. 85 It is not surprising then that Wolfe had serious doubts about Sinclair's mtegrity and motives. More immediate was his belief that Consul Sinclair had sabotaged terms of settlement which he had reached directly with the Chinese authorities. Wolfe had discussed terms of settlement with a taotai named Sheng and a captain, Lu Bua. After these discussions Wolfe wrote to the missionary society in London that the Chinese had suggested a settlement in eight parts; among other things the mission would be able to keep its deeds for the old property and the college would be rebuilt on a new site near by. Wade asked Ting about these proposals that the Chinese had made to Wolfe. Ting knew nothing about them, but called in Sheng, who reported that he had


not made any proposals, but had written down proposals made by Wolfe. Subsequently Sheng had shown them to the governor-general, who had rejected them. It is conceivable that either Wolfe or Sheng was deliberately misrepresenting what had transpired between them, but it seems more likely that there had been a misunderstanding. 86 There is no evidence whether or not Wade heard about the ma-ch'ang business or whether he looked into it. In spite of his suspicions, Wolfe had indicated a willingness to consider exchanging the Wu-shih-shan premises for another "suitable site" in the city. Wade spoke to Ting about this, and Ting was immediately interested. In the next couple of days Ting mentioned four pieces of ground within the city that could be made available to the mission, and Wade and Wolfe proceeded to inspect them. All were rather low-lying pieces of ground, but Wade thought that a couple of them could have been improved by bringing in fill, and he indicated that he would not hesitate to locate a consulate on one of them. Wolfe was not satisfied, however, and spoke of one of them as a place used for cesspools and raising fish. He told the missionary society that "the Chinese of course refused to give us any place that they thought would be likely to suit us." 87 Then Ting asked Wade whether, in view of the fact that the main consular offices were now in Nantai, he would consider letting the mission have the consulate's property on Wu-shih-shan. Wade was quite willing and this possibility was discussed at some length among Ting, Wade, and Wolfe. Eventually, however, the discussions broke down, when Wolfe demanded more of the consular property and adjoining properties than the Chinese were willing to let him have and when he insisted on having nothing less than a one-hundred-year lease, which the Chinese refused to give. Wolfe mentioned a property on another hill that the mission would be glad to accept, but the Chinese officials indicated that because of feng-shui considerations there would be as much objection to the mission being on that hill as in their present location. 88 One of the fascinating aspects of the Wu-shih-shan controversy was the cultural disparity of the participants. On the one side were the missionaries, standing on their legal rights and insisting that the Lord's work required their presence (on an attractive site!) in Foochow. On the other side were the Chinese gentry, who, as a last resort, were prepared to abandon Chinese

158 methods in favor of a Western-style solution, i.e., appeal to a consular court. In between were the British minister to China, Thomas Wade, and the high Chinese officials, working together, attempting in Confucian fashion to mediate, to do what was reasonable in the particular situation, to serve the cause of harmonious social relations. A good deal of China had rubbed off on Thomas Wade. He had approached Ting Jih-ch'ang as an old friend, asking him for help in solving a problem that they both wanted settled. It may be that in his general view of missionary work, Wade overestimated the extent to which the missionaries might be able to solve their problems without resort to the consuls and legal procedures. But it is hard to avoid the conclusion that the missionaries would have done well to emulate Wade's willingness to employ the Chinese style in dealing with the Chinese. With the failure of Wade's efforts at compromise, the Chinese side went ahead with their legal action in the consular court. Ting Jih-ch'ang and the governor-general, Ho Ching, memorialized that Wade agreed that this was that only course that remained. 89 The trial opened on April 30, 1879, with Chief Justice French from Shanghai presiding. It appears that the missionaries had objected to having Consul Sinclair serve as judge, feeling that he was prejudiced against them. 90 The North China Herald reported that the trial was attracting a great deal of attention, with "both foreigners and natives attending the court in large numbers. " 91 Hallyar's presentation of the plaintiffs' case took up the first five days. One line of argument was that neither side had been legally able to enter into the agreements of 1866 and 1867 by which the mission had rented the Wu-shih-shan property from the directors of the Tao-shan-kuan temple. He also reviewed the history of Wolfe's attempts, prior to 1867, to get perpetual tenure to the Wu-shih-shan property by arrangements with the temple priest, and he charged that the mission had built walls, modified and replaced old buildings, and built new ones in a manner that violated the agreements and Chinese custom and encroached on land which the mission had no right to use. The larger part of his argument and evidence were directed at establishing the point that the 1867 agreement, by which the larger part of the property was held, was not a perpetual lease, as both Wolfe and Sinclair had believed at the time, and that the provision that "So long as the rent is not


in arrear, the Directors shall not be entitled to let the premises to others" did not prevent the directors of the temple from refusing the rent and recovering the property for the temple's own use. According to Hallyar's argument, the provision just quoted was, in Chinese custom, simply a means of preventing the landlord from getting an increased rent by offering the property to a third party. In making his case, Hallyar called s number of witnesses, including a former prefect of Foochow, the present Hou-kuan magistrate, one of the directors of the Tao-shan-kuan temple, and the former priest of the temple, from whom Wolfe had tried to get perpetual tenure. 92 After Hallyar had completed his presentation of the plaintiffs' case on May 5, Judge French proposed that the two sides should attempt to reach a compromise. As a possible basis of agreement, he suggested that the missionaries be allowed to keep their residences in Wu-shih-shan and that they move their schools and college to another property in the city. This new attempt at compromise failed. The missionaries would not accept a piece of ground in the southwestern part of the city (one of the properties they had previously been offered in connection with Wade's attempt to bring about a settlement), and the Chinese would not give the missionaries the kind of tenure to the Wu-shih-shan property which the latter demanded. With the failure of the compromise settlement suggested by Judge French, the trial resumed on May 7. Hannan presented the arguments for the defense, and put Wolfe on the stand to substantiate the case. Hannan's presentation was more designed to defeat the charges of the plaintiffs than to satisfy the curiosity of future historians or even uphold the good name of the missionaries. He objected to the admission into evidence of some of the documents having to do with Wolfe's negotiations with the priest before 1867. Hannan did not produce any "expert" witnesses to counter the interpretation which witnesses called by Hallyar had given to the controversial clause in the 1867 agreement. Hallyar subjected Wolfe to a rigorous cross examination. Wolfe's answers to Hallyar's questions seemed evasive, and he frequently replied that he did not remember the matters about which he was asked to give definite answers. Hallyar kept reminding Wolfe that he was under oath, and on one occasion the judge scolded Wolfe for not being more responsive to the questions. His testimony must have been dJsappointing to his friends

160 who were attending the trial, but in his defense it should be noted that he was worn out and in poor health, and his doctors had ordered him to return to England. 93 The trial ended on May 10, and the proceedings were published in both Chinese and English. 94 Whatever impression Wolfe's seeming evasiveness may have made on those who attended the trial, Judge French's judgment in the case, 95 given on July 18, 1879, was favorable to the missionaries in a number of respects. The judge upheld the validity of the 1867 agreement; in the course of the proceedings the plaintiffs had withdrawn their plea for a clarification of the 1866 agreement. He did not find that there had been encroachment, or that the mission had misused the property. Stewart wrote to the society in London that "the judge's decision has swept away every moral stigma. " 96 The North China Herald quoted the Foochow Herald to the effect that the judgment had absolved Wolfe from "alleged acts of wrongful and aggressive dealing." 97 The Chinese side was not pleased with these aspects of the judgment. The directors of the Tao-shan-kuan temple told Sinclair that they were indignant that the court had not ordered any punishment of the missionaries for their misuse of the temple premises. 98 The governor-general, Ho Ching, wrote to the Tsungli Yam en that the court judgment had not been very critical of the missionaries. 99 For all practical purposes, however, the real victors were the Chinese. The crucial decision of the court had to do with the provision in the 1867 agreement that "So long as the rent is not in arrear, the Directors shall not be entitled to let the premises to others." The court ruled that this provision did not prevent the directors from terminating the agreement on three months' notice if the temple itself had bona fide need for the property. 100 The judge's interpretation of this disputed provision obviously opened the way for the directors to evict the missionaries and recover the property covered by the 1867 agreement. The decision of the court put the missionaries in a most serious situation, for they had been confident that the 1867 agreement amounted to a perpetual lease. Their conviction that they had the right to stay in their Wu-shih-shan premises had been an important factor underlying their refusal of the properties that they had been offered in exchange. With the court's ruling that they


could be evicted on three months' notice, they now had much less bargaining power than they had had previously in negotiations for new premises. Since they now faced the prospect of being evicted, on the basis of Judge French's decision, they no longer had anything to trade for alternative properties. Wade was informed by a foreigner who had close connections with the Chinese officials in Foochow that the latter were "set upon exaction of the utmost." 101 Hartwell of the American Board mission deplored that the English missionaries were now "wholly at the mercy of the Heathen Chinese." 102 What the missionaries had expected would happen, since July 18 when Judge French rendered his decision in the Wu-shih-shan case, came about on August 14, 1879, when the directors of the temple, in Sinclair's presence, signed a declaration that the Tao-shan-kuan grounds which had been rented to the missionaries under the 1867 agreement were "bona fide required" for the use of the temple itself. The same day the directors visited Stewart in a body and gave him an official notification that the mission would be required to vacate the premises by January 1, 1880. When Stewart said that the missionaries would need a place to go to, the directors responded that the CMS had 140 chapels in Fukien. 103 But even though the English missionaries were in serious trouble, they were not without means of salvaging something from the disaster that had struck. In the first place, both the British minister, Wade, and the consul, Sinclair, gave-the missionaries strong support. As a matter of fact, even before Judge French had given his decision in the case in the consular court, Wade had strongly urged the Foochow officials to be generous with the missionaries in the event that the court ruled against them, and on August 28 he instructed Sinclair to help the missionaries find other quarters. He asked him to inform the governor-general, Ho Ching, of his personal desire that the missionaries be well treated and his opinion that foreigners would have a better regard for the Chinese officials if they treated the missionaries with consideration. 104 Another lever which the missionaries could use was the threat of appealing Judge French's interpretation of the 1867 agreement to the Privy Council in London, and they made the most of it. In a letter of July 31, Stewart, who, following Wolfe's departure for England, was in charge of the mission, informed

162 Sinclair that the mission had lodged a provisional notice of appeal in Shanghai. 105 Before that time he had written to the society in England that the threat of an appeal "may have some effect in inducing them to give us something." 106 The effect of this on the Chinese was probably enhanced when Sinclair told the Chinese that an appeal would probably take two years, and that during that time they would be expected to protect the missionaries in their continued possession of the Wu-shih-shan premises. 107 Still another factor which helped the missionaries was the desire of the Foochow officials to get the whole case settled. For months they had been under pressure from the Tsungli Yamen to settle matters, and for months they had been sending dispatches to Sinclair summarizing the actions they had taken and asking that the case be declared closed. Wade and Sinclair had repeatedly replied that they could not close the case until the British Foreign Secretary, Lord Salisbury, authorized them to do so, and no such authorization had been received. Finally, not the least of the factors that helped the missionaries at this critical time was the reasonableness of the Chinese officials. In the same letter to the Tsungli Yamen (received in Peking August 19, 1879) in which he had reported Judge French's decision, the governor-general spoke of his intention to let the missionaries have the telegraph company's property. 108 In September the Chinese officials, in spite of the disapproval of the gentry, made a very generous settlement with the missionaries. They agreed to let the mission rent, for a period of twenty years, the telegraph company property in Nantai, which had previously been spurned. They did not offer it rent-free, as they had in 1877, but they agreed to let them have it for $350 a year. They took pains to point out that they could have rented it to the French consul for $1,000, but had kept it available for the missionaries, and that by comparison with what they could have received from the French consul, over twenty years they would lose some $13,000 by renting it to the missionaries at the lower figure. They used this latter fact to justify their refusal of the mission's request for compensation for buildings (except the burned college) which the mission had erected on Wu-shih-shan during its twenty-nine-year tenure there. On Sinclair's urging, the Chinese officials postponed until March 31, 1880, the date by which the mission would have


to complete its evacuation of the Wu-shih-shan premises, and for good measure, they turned over $3,000 as compensation for the destroyed college. Stewart accepted these terms of settlement and in return agreed not to appeal the court decision. 109 Finally on February 24, 1880, Lord Salisbury authorized Wade to declare the case closed.U 0 The mission moved out of Tao-shan-kuan, and the Chinese immediately demolished the foreign buildings which the mission had built there. 111 With relation to the closing of the Wu-shih-shan case, there were two other developments which should be mentioned in passing. One is the fact that before the formal closing of the case, the Chinese had already rescinded the punishments of three men, which had been ordered in response to the British demands. On the recommendation of the Foochow tartar general, Ch'ing-ch'un, the Grand Council memorialized on January 26, 1880, proposing that the punishments previously ordered for the magistrate, Liu En-ti, the military officer, P'u Ta-hsing, and the gentry leader, Lin Ying-lin, should be rescinded. In support of his recommendation Ch'ing-ch'un had reported that Liu and P'u had acted energetically in arresting the rioters and that Lin was truly repentant and did not deserve further punishement. An imperial edict of January 26, 1880, approved the Grand Council's proposal. Apparently the British were not aware of this action at the time the case was formally closed. 112 The other development which should be mentioned is that not long after the departure of the missionaries from Wu-shih-shan, Sinclair was able to report happily that he had been successful in obtaining the recreation ground, suitable for riding horses, that he had wanted so badly for the foreign resident-s of Foochow. 113 Unfortunately the removal of the CMS from Tao-shan-kuan did not mark the beginning of a new era of better relations between the CMS and the Foochow gentry and officials. The missionaries, especially Stewart, were still unwilling to resign themselves to making Nantai their main place of operations. Against Sinclair's advice that he should hold off for a while, Stewart worked frantically to get property on a hill close to Wu-shih-shan called Ti-i-shan ("the first hill") as a location for a hospital for Dr. Taylor.

164 He tried to locate the boys' school in premises at the foot of Wu-shih-shan, which a convert had acquired in his own name (but with mission money) in 1878. He prevailed upon another convert, a widow named Lin, to buy (also with mission money) a house on Wu-shih-shan. The Foochow gentry and officials, having just given the missionaries generous terms in order to get them out of Tao-shan-kuan as soon as possible, were not in a mood to see them locate themselves in other places on Wu-shih-shan or on Ti-i-shan, which was also supposed to be important to the feng-shui of the city. The result was that Stewart was unable to get the Ti-i-shan property, and when the officials saw that the mission would be using the properties purchased by the converts on and at the foot of Wu-shih-shan, they rescinded the property transactions by which the converts had acquired them, turned the boys out of the school, sealed the properties, and imprisoned one of the converts who had acted in behalf of the mission. 114 In his letters Stewart sounded as though he was heroically standing alone against all the forces of evil. He became increasingly hysterical and paranoid, writing in one letter that "the mental strain is very great, night and day, playing chess against Sinclair and the Mandarins and their king, the enemy of mankind." It is hardly surprising that he went on to report that "the doctor tells me I must not see a Chinaman for a month or do any work for two months." 115 He did go off to Peking, presumably for rest, but while he was there he saw Wade and complained bitterly about both the Chinese and Consul Sinclair, who were working together to deny the mission its legal rights. Wade urged Stewart not to further alienate the Chinese, and for good measure he attempted to give Stewart some instruction in the meaning of Christian charity, making use of St. Paul's writings on the subject. 116 But Stewart was not to be persuaded. After his return to Foochow, he broke the official seals on the house which had been purchased through the widow Lin and moved in. He stayed there for three months (April to July) against the advice of the consul, his bishop, and others, and finally moved out only because of illness. 117 Meanwhile the Foochow gentry and officials were becoming increasingly indignant at Stewart's unreasonableness and antagonistic manner. In May Sinclair predicted to Wade that he expected trouble to continue if Stewart remained in charge of the CMS work in Foochow. 118


The Wu-shih-shan case is instructive in a number of respects. It is a striking example of the serious consequences which should come from poor judgment on the part of the missionaries in their relations with the Chinese. It is also a vivid example of the stubbornness of Chinese hostility to the missionaries. Although the gentry and people of Foochow had long since accepted the inevitability of the presence of the British consulate on Wu-shih-shan, even after twenty-eight years the missionaries were still a thorn in the Chinese side. While it must be conceded that there were specific reasons for the Chinese resentment at the missionaries' residence and actions at this particular place, it would be a mistake to assume that the explosion of August 30 arose solely out of the issues peculiar to Wu-shih-shan. It would probably be more correct to say that Wu-shih-shan had been a prime symbol of a much broader hostility. Thus the removal of the missionaries from the hill was not a solution to the more general problem.

One of the startling aspects of the Wu-shih-shan incident of 1878 was that it came some thirty-one years after the beginning of missionary work in Foochow. After three decades of missionary life and work, the hostility and opposition that had existed from the beginning was still there. Such success as the missions had had in establishing themselves and winning converts had made gentry opposition more determined and, on occasion, less restrained. Looking back on these three decades of encounter between the missionaries and Chinese society, one can only conclude that conflict was inevitable. The missionaries' belief that they had been called by God to save China's perishing millions and their conviction that those who were saved must throw off their former beliefs and manner of life and become part of a closely knit fellowship of believers were in opposition to China's social and political structure, in which the gentry managed local affairs, her deep-rooted satisfaction with her own culture, and her accompanying disdain of foreigners. The possibilities for compromise or accommodation were very limited. The Chinese gentry were in no mood to accommodate the missionaries, whose teachings were heterodox and whose converts became part of an almost


separate society which threatened to upset the established relationships of the Confucian order. Although cultured Chinese might treat the missionaries politely in chance encounters, they had little incentive to befriend them or try to find them a comfortable niche in the Middle Kingdom. Thus it fell to the missionaries to make their own way, with some help from their own governments; they had few means of bridging the gap between themselves and Chinese society. About the only way that the missionaries could really have avoided conflict would have been to withdraw, but that would have been a betrayal of their calling. In this situation the missionaries eventually concentrated their efforts on the less antagonistic elements of Chinese society, who were also the least cultured. The fact that the converts were mostly humble and ignorant people simply reinforced the gentry's contempt for the foreigner's religion. At the same time the gentry resented, and resisted, the influence which the missionaries exerted on the common people, who were supposed to look to the gentry for guidance. In many cases gentry resistance to the missionaries resulted in consular interventions, which restrained the gentry in particular situations, but at the cost of increasing their antagonism. While the gentry had no incentive for improving relations with the missionaries, the missionaries would have benefited greatly from better relations with the gentry. However, being the kind of people they were, they would have found it extremely difficult to go very far in that direction. Given their missionary calling, their theological views, their very limited knowledge of Chinese society and culture, and the very low opinion which they had of China, it would have been most difficult for them to change their priorities or methods. They were convinced that come what may they had been called to Foochow to make known a gospel of salvation of souls. Because they believed that those who did not hear and heed this gospel were doomed to a "wretched eternity," it was inevitable that they should give priority to making converts as quickly as possible and wherever possible. It would have been inconceivable for them to have adopted the view that their central task should be delayed until they could acquire a better understanding of Chinese society and culture, or until they could come to terms with the gentry.


One of the paradoxes of the situation was that, while the missionaries were very aware of the opposition of the gentry, they did not really understand the position of the gentry in the society or why they were hostile. In the missionary view the gentry were simply people with classical learning whose pride and conceit caused them willfully to obstruct not only the rights which the treaties had given to missionaries and converts, but also such efforts as Chinese officials might make, under the prodding of the consuls, to make it possible for the missionaries and converts to exercise those rights. The missionaries had very little appreciation of the fact that the gentry had important and respected roles in the society, such as maintaining local order and serving as a cushion between the officials and the masses of the Chinese people. Although the missionaries might instruct their converts to respect and obey the officials ("render unto Caesar the things which are Caesar's"), little attention was given to the question of respect due to the gentry or means of improving relations with them. Lacking knowledge and understanding of Chinese society, the missionaries could not resist the temptation to fall back on Biblical .and theological interpretations. Thus, the gentry became the Chinese equivalents of the "Scribes and Pharisees," even agents of the Devil. Such a view was not conducive to the development of a better understanding of the gentry or to efforts to improve relations with them. The point has been made that American missionary involvement in China helped to stimulate the development of Chinese studies in American universities. The history of Protestant missions in China might have been quite different, however, if the development of Chinese studies in America had come before instead of after the commencement of mission work. Even if the missionaries had had greater knowledge of China and had been willing to give higher priority to reducing tensions between themselves and the society in which they worked-at the expense, probably, of their efforts to win converts quickly-it is doubtful if they could have overcome very much of the hostility which they faced. There would seem, however, to have been certain things which the missionaries could have done which might have helped to keep this hostility from turning into violent opposition.

168 The success of the limited medical service which missionary doctors offered suggests that the missions would have done well to develop the medical work earlier and on a larger scale. This was the one service offered by the missions which many people of all classes of Chinese society considered valuable. Just as knowledge of astronomy had been a boon to the Jesuit missionaries of the seventeenth centruy, medical service was a means whereby the Protestant missionaries of the nineteenth centrry could prove themselves useful in the Middle Kingdom. Later in the century, of course, the missionary societies did place greater emphasis on the medical work and won friends and influence by doing so. An earlier and more large-scale development of medical work might also have helped to some extent in qualifying the contemptuous view that the gentry had of the missionaries. The history of the Foochow missions during the period under discussion also suggests another step which the missions should have taken, and could have taken without compromising their own values and goals. This would have been to improve their methods of decision-making, selection of missionaries, and insuring that individual missionaries accepted the policies and decisions of the mission. This point is made mainly with reference to the CMS mission during the period when it was dominated by Wolfe. Although the American Board and the American Methodists worked in the same Chinese environment as the CMS, and did so with virtually the same aims and methods, and also encountered Chinese hostility, the fact remains that they did not get into as serious trouble as their brethren of the CMS. The CMS was less successful than the other missions in finding ways of insuring that the greatest amount of available wisdom was brought to bear on decisions that had to be made and that individuals within the mission accepted such decisions. There can be no doubt that Wolfe's aggressiveness and tactlessness, his disregard of Chinese feelings, and his uncompromising manner aggravated an already dangerous and explosive situation. Although the Chinese resented missionaries in gereral, Wolfe was a special case. In 1879 the governor-general, Ho Ching, complained about Wolfe to Consul Sinclair, charging that "among the gentry and the people of the entire province there has grown up and is still growing daily more intense a deep-seated feeling of dislike toward him." 119

169 It is also clear that after George Smith's death Wolfe dominated the Foochow mission. No one could persuade him or deter him-not the missionary society at home, not the bishop of Hong Kong, not his colleagues in the mission, not Consul Sinclair or Minister Wade, certainly not the Chinese officials whose anger he provoked. The governor-general, Ho Ching, informed Consul Sinclair that he should "keep under proper control missionaries who like Mr. Wolfe are undoubtedly chargeable with aggressive and troublesome conduct toward the authorities and with bringing unfounded accusations against the gentry." 120 But there was little that Sinclair could do. The only body which could have controlled Wolfe if it had chosen to do so was the missionary society at home, but it deferred to him; after all, it was under Wolfe's aggressive leadership that a mission once considered a failure had won thousands of converts. And here is one of the greatest paradoxes: that the missionary who did most to inflame Chinese-missionary relations was also the one who was most successful in winning converts to Christianity. But there is still the question of whether Wolfe's successes were worth the price that had to be paid for them, particularly the Wu-shih-shan incident of 1878.




ABCFM Stephen Johnson ABCFM Lyman B. Peet ABCFM Rebecca C. (Mrs. Lyman) Peet AME Moses C. White AME Jane Isabel (Mrs. Moses) White AME Judson Dwight Collins AME Robert S. Maclay AME Henry Hickok Mrs. Henry Hickok AME ABCFM Caleb C. Baldwin Harriet F. (Mrs. Caleb) ABCFM Baldwin ABCFM William L. Richards ABCFM Seneca Cummings ABCFM Mrs. Seneca Cummings Caroline Selmer (Mrs. Stephen) ABCFM (was London Johnson Ladies Assoc.) ABCFM Justus Doolittle Sophia A. (Mrs. Justus) ABCFM Doolittle Swedish Lutheran Carl Joseph Fast A. Elquist Swedish Lutheran CMS Robert David Jackson William Welton CMS Henrietta Sperry AME (Mrs. Robert S. Maclay) James Colder AME Mrs. James Colder AME Isaac W. Wiley AME Mrs. Isaac W. Wiley AME Mary Seely AME (2nd Mrs. Moses C. White) ABCFM Charles Hartwell ABCFM Lucy E. (Mrs. Charles) Hartwell

Arrival date


Jan. 2, 1847 Sept.6, 1847 Sept. 6, 1847

December 1852 Spring 1871 d. July 17, 1856

Sept.6, 1847 Sept. 6, 1847

Dec. 22, 1852 d. 1848

Sept. 6, 1847 Apr. 15, 1848 Apr. 15, 1848 Apr. 15, 1848 May 7, 1848 May 7, 1848

Apr. 22, 1851 December 1871 Feb. 15, 1849 Feb. 15, 1849

May 7, 1848 May 7, 1848 May 7, 1848 1849

1851 May 28, 1855 May 28, 1855 December 1852

May 31, 1850 May 31, 1850

1864 d. June 21, 1856

Jan. 1, 1850 August 1850 May 21, 1850 May 1850 Aug. 14, 1850

Killed, Nov. 1850 1850 1852 September 1856 December 1871

July 9, July 9, July 9, July 9, July 9,

May 1853 May 1853 Jan. 15, 1854 d. Nov. 3, 1853 Dec. 22, 1852

1851 1851 1851 1851 1851

June 9, 1853 June 9, 1853

d. July 10, 1883

172 Name


Arrival date


June 15, 1855 June 15, 1855 June 15, 1855 June 18, 1855 June 18, 1855 Aug. 13, 1855 Aug. 13, 1855 1857 or 1858 Mar. 18, 1859 Mar. 18, 1859

Nov. 22, 1859 d. 1855 d. 1855 1862 d. Oct. 2, 1855 1865 1865 Nov. 22, 1859

CMS Matthew Fearnley CMS Francis McCaw CMS Mrs. Francis McCaw Erastus Wentworth AME AME Anna M. Wentworth Otis Gibson AME Mrs. Otis Gibson AME Mrs. Matthew Fearnley CMS Stephen L. Baldwin AME Nellie M. (Mrs. Stephen) AME Baldwin Beulah Woolston AME Sallie H. Woolston AME Phoebe E. Potter AME (2nd Mrs. Erastus Wentworth) George Smith CMS Mrs. George Smith CMS Mrs. Lyman B. Peet (2nd) ABCFM Lucy C. Doolittle ABCFM (2nd Mrs. Justus) C.R. Martin AME Mrs. C. R. Martin AME Simeon F. Woodin ABCFM Sara L. (Mrs. Simeon) Woodin ABCFM Nathan Sites AME Mrs. Nathan Sites AME Samuel L. Binkley AME Mrs. Samuel L. Binkley AME John Richard Wolfe CMS Mrs. John Richard Wolfe CMS Arthur William Cribb 1 CMS Mrs. Arthur William Cribb CMS Virgil C. Hart AME Mrs. Virgil C. Hart


May 1866

Lucius N. Wheeler Mrs. Lucius N. Wheeler H.H.Lowry Mrs. H. H. Lowry Jennie S. Peet John E. Mahood Adelia M. Payson


May 1866 May 1866 Oct. 10, 1867 Oct. 10, 1867 Oct. 10, 1867 1869 Jan. 18, 1869

d. March 1861

Mar. 18, 1859 Mar. 18, 1859 1858 or 1859


1859 1859 Mar. 18, 1859 1860

d. Oct. 18, 1863 1864 1861 1864

Apr. 1, 1860 Apr. 1, 1860 Feb. 7, 1860 Feb. 7, 1860 Sept. 19, 1861 Sept. 19, 1861 March 1862 March 1862 April 1862 1864 1864 1864 May 1866

d. Sept. 6, 1864 1865

1863 1863

1871 1871 To Kiukiang, December 1867 To Kiukiang, December 1867 To Peking, 1869 To Peking, 1869 To Peking, 1869 To Peking, 1869 To Amoy, 1868 1875 1879

173 Name Dr. Dauphin W. Osgood Helen W. (Mrs. Dauphin) Osgood Nathan J. Plumb Franklin Ohlinger Ada E. Claghorn (m. J.E. Walker, May 21, 1873) James E. Walker Julia Walling (m. Nathan Plumb) B. E. Edgell Mrs. B. E. Edgell David W. Chandler Mary E. (Mrs. David) Chandler Dr. Sigourney Trask James Henry Sedgwick Josiah Blackman Blakely Isabella (Mrs. J.B.) Blakely Bertha S. (Mrs. Franklin) Ohlinger R. W. Stewart Mrs. R. W. Stewart Llewellyn Lloyd Dr. Henry T. Whitney Lewrie S. (Mrs. Henry) Whitney Dr. Julia E. Sparr Ella J. Newton Dr. Van Someren Taylor Mrs. Van Someren Taylor Miss Foster W. Banister Mrs. W. Banister


Arrival date



Jan.22, 1870 Jan. 22, 1870

d. Aug. 17, 1880


Oct. 14, 1870 Oct. 14, 1870 1872


1872 1873


1873 1873 Nov. 10, 1874 Nov. 10, 1874 Nov. 10, 1874 Dec. 13, 1874 Dec. 13, 1874 Dec. 13, 1874 1876


1876 1876 1876 1877 1877 1878 1878 1879 1879 1879 1880 1880

d. 1879 June 1876 June 1876

1876 1879 1879

d. 1879


1860-1880 (Involving loss or destruction of property, bodily harm, or imprisonment)

Name in WadeGiles romanization

Name in Foochow dialect

Name in characters

A-chia 1 An-yang2

Ang-iong Ang-t'au3


Chang-lo4 Ch'i-tu5

g,_ ~~ Tiong-lok -t'Z ~ Cheik-tu _ (Chek-tu)

Chien-ning-fu 6


Erh-tu 7 Feng-pan 8 Fu-ch'ing9

Nei-tu (Ni-tu) Wong-pwang Hok-ch'iang

Hai-k'ou 10 Ho-yang 11 Hsiao-mu-ch'i 12 Hsien-yu-hsien 13 Hsing-hua-fu 14

Hai-kau i-tlJ: \:1 O-iong i j. ~ Ko-sang-che ,%; J.1 Kou-kong 20 Ku-seu 21 \'£} Ku-cheng

Kao-shan-shih 19

Ku-t'ien 22


J1.. i Jff ..:::.i~


- l,,




© ~~

Sieng-iu-gaing 1J-i ~ Hing-hwa






Lau-iong 23

Years of persecution

Consular interventions

1867, 1868, 1878 1871,1876 1871 1863, 1871 1875, 1876


1864, 1868-1869, 1873, 1876, 1878 1876 1880 1866, 1868, 1869, 1871 1871 1873-1876 1862 1870 1870, 1874, 1878, 1880 1871 1878 1876 1879 1879 1878 1868, 1870 1867, 1868, 1871, 1876 1878, 1879

1871 1871 1863, 1871

1864, 1868-1869, 1873, 1876, 1878-1880 1876 1866, 1869, 1871 1871 1862 1878, 1880 1871

1879 1878 1870 1871

175 Name in WadeGiles romanization

Name in Foochow dialect

Li-yang 24 Lien-chiang-

Le-iong Lieng-kong

hsien 25 Lo-yuan 26

gaing Lo-nguong

Name in characters


{.t ,I J ;,

it ~:r--9:t

Years of persecution

Consular interventions

1876,1877 1868, 1879




1868-1872, 1876, 1877 Nan-ya27 Nang-wa 1879 &:J ~i Ning-te-hsien 28 Ning-taik-gaing 1875, 1876 ll~ J.~. l,.:!J41'., Niu-k'eng 29 Ngu-k'ang 1861 tiL Pe-hu 30 1879, 1880 P'ing-nan 31 Pin-nang 1867 Jj 32 Sha-hsien :.-J- fli Sa-gaing 1872-1879 /J -:F,' Shan-yang-ts'un33 Sang-iong :it~ 1871 :ff Shao-wu 34 1875 -Pi~ '"' I Shih-pa-tu 35 Sek-baik-du -f ,'-... ,t~ 1871 Te-hua36 f(J Taik-hwa 1876 Tang-tao 37 Tang-tau 1871 38 'Q Ti-k'ou Teik-kau 1879 To-ngwong39 1878 Tung-chang40 5-k_ Teng-tiong 1871 U-Yong41 1880

-~ :i/1,



,w ~t

1868-1872, 1876, 1877 1876 1861



Ji?. ,t

Y ang-chung42 Yang-k'ou43 Yen-p'ing44 Yen-tou45 Yung-ch'un47 Yung-fu48

(in Te-hua district) long-tung Iong-kau jf a long-ping

~-f ''f


Ngan-tow Yik-kau 46 Ing-chung lng-hok

1l ,,~ ?i