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【Zhang Jian】Zhang Jian appears in century-old book compiled by expats

en.nantong.gov.cn Updated: 2024-04-18


Cover of the Biographies of Prominent Chinese. [Photo/Nantong Daily]

Zhang Jian (1853-1926), a renowned industrial magnate in Nantong, has recently been discovered in the Biographies of Prominent Chinese compiled by expatriates living in China a century ago.

The book, which records 202 Chinese figures who gained high reputation in the country at that time, was recently acquired by the Nantong Archives during its collection of materials related to Zhang and the Dasheng Cotton Mills.


Photo of Zhang Jian and his brief biography in the Biographies of Prominent Chinese. [Photo/Nantong Daily]

Zhang also wrote a prologue to the book, speaking positively of the biographies. The prologue is presumed to be written in 1923, in the twilight years of Zhang's life, thus making the brief biography of Zhang Jian in the book his ultimate evaluation.

One of the compilers of the book, John Benjamin Powell, paid particular attention to Zhang as well as the development of Nantong led by the industrial magnate from 1919 to 1926 in his Millard's Review, an English weekly magazine published in Shanghai.

The magazine also published an article about Zhang Jian and Nantong's development in economic, cultural, and social undertakings, comprehensively presenting Zhang's contribution to his hometown.