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0053 History of the Expedition in Asia, 1927-1935 : vol.2
History of the Expedition in Asia, 1927-1935 : vol.2 / Page 53 (Color Image)

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doi: 10.20676/00000210
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At the same time HASI,UND started off on a journey to the Qara-shahr Torguts, amongst whom he intended to carry out anthropometric measurements. He was also going to take phonograph records of their folk-music and songs.


In order to avoid a repetition of our fruitless visit to the Governor we sent a messenger to ask what day he would be pleased to receive us. On the 13th we drove once more to his quarters. He met us at the main entrance and led us into a new reception-room to the left. CHIN SHU-JEN had formerly been the head of YANG'S chancellery, thus occupying a relatively subordinate position compared with other potentates among the Chinese in Urumchi. This CHIN had not a trace of the nimbus of authority and venerableness that had surrounded his predecessor. Since the day of the murder, on July 7th, when by quickness and presence of mind he had stepped into the place of the murdered man, he had not once ventured to cross the outermost threshold of his yamen. He spent his days within the walls of his own courtyards as a voluntary prisoner. He did not feel secure in the post that he had himself assumed.

YANG had been both civil and military Governor of Sinkiang, or Governor-General, if he is to be distinguished from the eight governors who served under him.1) He thus bore the title sheng-cheng or Civil Governor and also to-chün or Highest-in-Command. After the victory of Kuomintang in 1928 the old governor's titles were abolished, and the highest official in a province is now the chairman of the provincial council. YANG'S successor also had two titles. As »president of the provincial council » he was called chu-hsi, and as the highest in command of the army of the province tsung-ssu-ling.

CHIN SHU-JEN was tall and thin, with a large, elongated face, long nose and very small brain-pan. (Plate 7). Bowing and smiling he urged us to enter and be seated at the long table, where six soldiers in light grey and yellow uniforms stood guard. We were offered tea and cigarettes. I ought to have asked him why he had not given orders that I should be allowed to pass freely in Chuguchaq, but it would have been tactless and undiplomatic in the presence of the soldiers. I expressed my sorrow over YANG'S death, and we then spoke of the expedition and its tasks. We asked permission for Sm, Huim EL and myself to undertake a couple of journeys in the desert tracts of Eastern Turkistan (I had for long cherished plans for a new crossing of Takla-makan); to this he replied that he would think the matter over — a bad sign. I informed him that the motor-cars, spare

1 These eight governors or tao-yin (a title that has now been changed to hsiang-chung-chang-kuan or »executive chief-officer ») have their seats in Urumchi, Shara-sume (Altai), Chuguchaq, Ili (Kulja), Qara-shahr, Aqsu, Kashgar and Khotan.