Sunday, October 2, 2011
Thinking there might be fewer travelers today, we took the train to Nanjing. Nanjing, meaning "South Capital," first became a capital in 229 CE. It was the capital on and off under six dynasties, and intermmittently for the Republic of China until 1949.
We missed our 8:00 AM train, as we did not anticipate having to change trains on the Metro, nor dashing the entire length of the Hongqiao Railway Station. That meant we had to spend time in lines at the ticket counter to trade the tickets for the next available train.
Had time to photograph a squat toilet:
Mystery number one was the location of the Nanjing South Railway Station which was not where we thought it would be on the map. Turns out there is a CRH (China Fast Train) South Railway Station that is farther south than the regular South Railway Station.
A Nanjing Metro blue plastic token:
Checked in to the hotel, had lunch, then off to the Memorial for the Victims of the Nanjing Massacre. Founded in 1985 and expanded in 1995. It was probably appropriate that it was raining. Outside the Memorial stood this very tall sculpture:
"December 13, 1937,
Began the inhuman massacre!
The only hope to survive"
A man and his wife:
"A thirteen-year old carrying his grandmother who has died in a bomb,
Man with his mother:
"My dear mother in the eighties,
Hurry up! Run away from the bloody hands!"
Woman in agony:
"Never will a holy soul bear the humiliation of the devils!
Only to die!
Only to die!
First inside the museum was a look at a bombed street scene:
Memorial Hall with projected faces and a ersatz eternal flame:
interested, but be warned that the photos are not for the faint of heart.
The Exhibition Hall had a room dedicated to the foreigners who helped during the massacre, and/or witnessed and documented the event.
Another room was dedicated to the War Crimes Trial conducted by the International Military Tribunal of the Far East from 1946-1948.
Although the Chinese have not received an acceptable apology from Japan, there are many instances of individual repentance shown in the museum.
Reading Room and archives:
The Poem Tablet of "Violent Snow:"
Statue of Iris Chang:
Behind the large black wall, we entered another huge square, Graveyard Square:
The Wall of Victory:
A large relief-sculpture in the shape of a 'V,'' representing victory, along with a Chinese soldier blowing the bugle of victory and stepping on a steel helmet and bayonet from the invading army.
The Statue of Peace:
Shikinsou or Shokatsusai/Orychophragmus violaceus. The story is that Seitaro Yamaguchi, a civilian working with the Japanese Army in 1939, collected the seeds of this flower at the base of Purple Mountain in Nanjing. He took the seeds back to Japan and he and his family propagated them throughout the country. It became known as the "Peace Flower." In 2007, the 83-year old son of Seitaro raised about $100,000 to build the Shikinsou Garden as a "symbol of prayer for peace by both the Chinese and Japanese people."
"Showing Repentance by Planting Trees:"
Peace dove cote:
Silk worm cocoons:
These looms require the teamwork of two persons: the jacqard weaver works at the top of the loom determining the figured pattern, while the weaver on the ground operates the shuttle carrying the proper color of thread.
Many beautiful examples of robes and fabrics: