On July 1, 1921, the Communist Party of China was founded in Shanghai's French Concession. The media buildup to the 90th anniversary of the CPC's founding that has taken place in recent weeks made us wonder: Where did the CPC first take hold in Yunnan?
Ironically, the CPC itself was founded in an area now known as Xintiandi, a high-end lifestyle development.
As we discovered, the founding of the Yunnan chapter of the CPC took place in a small alley, Jiexiao Xiang (节孝巷) on November 7, 1926, nearly five years after the founding of the party itself.
The Founding Site of the CPC Yunnan Underground Party (中共云南地下党建党旧址) is a small, humble museum located at 39 Jiexiao Xiang.
According to staff at the historical site, CPC member Li Xin (李鑫) chaired the first Yunnan CPC meeting in a building at 24 Jiexiao Xiang, which is now 55 Jiexiao Xiang, after the CPC Guangdong Area Committee decided that Yunnan needed its own party chapter. At the meeting, it was decided that 42 Jiexiao Xiang (now 39 Jiexiao Xiang) would serve as the location for party activities.
The building at 24 Jiexiao Xiang was destroyed by Japanese bombers, rendering the museum's current site the oldest building connected to the Yunnan CPC's roots.
Upon walking into the museum's courtyard, one's attention is immediately drawn to a massive bust of the first secretary-general of the CPC's Yunnan chapter, Wang Desan (王德三) a native of Xiangyun who had joined the party in Beijing in 1922 and was sent to direct its Yunnan activities. Wang was named to his office in Kunming in January 1930, only to die on December 31 the same year.
The museum's mood is one of respect for the ideals of young Chinese dedicated to a cause to the extent that they were willing to sacrifice their own lives for it.
We spoke to a staff member working there, who told us in between slurps of rice noodles that normally the site did not have many visitors but that traffic had picked up recently in the runup to the CPC's 90th anniversary.
The Founding Site of the CPC Yunnan Underground Party is open from 9am to 5pm Monday through Saturday, but will remain open to visitors this Sunday. Entry is free.© Copyright 2005-2020 GoKunming.com all rights reserved. This material may not be republished, rewritten or redistributed without permission.