Sunday, July 5, 2009

4th of July in Xiamen --1921!

Bill Brown ... Xiamen University

Some folks from the U.S. Consulate in Guangzhou, and visitors from the U.S., had some sort of get together in Xiamen (former Amoy), a week before July 4th. That was the closest, perhaps, to having an "official" 4th of July celebration in Xiamen for over 60 years. But I have accounts from journals and diaries of pretty big July 4th celebrations in Xiamen dating back to the mid 1850s, and below is a photo of Americans in Amoy celebrating the U.S.' birthday in 1921. (I'm certainly glad we don't have to brave Xiamen summers in those kinds of clothes today).

By the way, while we're celebrating the 4th, let's give thanks to Xiamen, because no Xiamen, no U.S.A.! After all, it was Anxi tea (from Quanzhou) shipped from Xiamen by a Xiamen ship that was dumped overboard during the Boston Tea Party of 1773. So were it not for Xiamen, there would be no 4th of July, our lawyers would still be wearing powdered white wigs (like the guys in HK still wear), and we'd be eating our french fries with malt vinegar instead of ketchup. So.... thank you Xiamen!
Happy 4th!
Click the image for a larger view:

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