Asia Pacific 1928: Jinan Incident

Aided by the Guangxi clique, the Chinese Nationalists drove the Communists into the mountains in late 1927. With the Communists out of the way, Chiang Kaishek was ready to resume his march on Beijing. However when he attacked the Fengtian clique, the Japanese intervened, expelling the Nationalists from the strategic city of Jinan.


Treaty Ports

Treaty ports were towns opened to foreign trade by unequal treaties in China. Foreigners operating within treaty ports enjoyed extraterritoriality, being subject to their home country’s laws. Unlike concessions such as Hong Kong, these territories were not directly leased by the foreign powers and did not have sizable foreign garrisons.

Treaty ports are not shown in the maps after the 1911 Chinese Revolution in order to give a clearer picture of the chaos in China itself and as by that point their numbers had stabilized. After the revolution, some of the smaller ports were phased out while the others became less important as the situation in China meant that only the concessions could provide foreigners with security. Most, however, still continued on into the 1940s when the Japanese entry into World War II and foreign agreements with China brought them to an end.

See this map for treaty ports in 1907, when the system was at its peak.

Warlord China

From the Zhili-Anhui War (1920) to the Nationalist recapture of Beijing (1928), control over China fluctuated as various warlords fought for power. The foreign powers handled this situation by regarding whichever warlords controlled Beijing as the legitimate government of China, even though these warlords often had no influence outside the city.

To depict this situation, this atlas shows the recognized government of China as warlord-controlled rather than as an independent entity, with its size changing depending on how much authority the government had outside of Beijing. However the actual recognized borders of China itself did not change during this period.

Yangtze River

By the terms of the Treaty of Tientsin (1858), foreign vessels including warships had the right to free navigation on the Yangtze River. In practical terms, this right extended only as far as Yichang until 1900, when advances in steam navigation allowed access as far inland as Chongqing.

Main Events

15 Jul 1927 Wuhan Government breaks with Chinese Communists

Wuhan Government breaks with Chinese Communistsin wikipedia

1–5 Aug 1927 Nanchang Uprising

Communists briefly occupied Nanchang before being expelled by the wikipedia

16 Dec 1927 Kuomintang takes Fengtian clique headquarters at Fuzhou (Southern Shandong)

Kuomintang takes Fengtian clique headquarters at Fuzhou (Southern Shandong)in wikipedia

20 Apr–11 May 1928 Japan occupies Jinan

Japanese land at Qingdao and take Jinan from Kuomintang, proclaiming that they will take measures to restore order should war break out in northeast Chinain wikipedia