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15 July 2015

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History of Hunan

According to the historical records, human activities can be traced back to at least 50,000-100,000 years ago within the boundary of Hunan.


The paddy discovered at the ruins of Yuchanyan Cave in south Hunan's Daoxian county, traced back to 15,000 years ago. It is known as the earliest paddy sample in the world, demonstrating a transition trend from wild paddy to artificial cultivation.


According to archeological excavations from Pengtoushan Site in Lixian county, Hunan has entered the Neolithic Age since 9,000 years ago.


According to archeological excavations from Mengxi Sanyuan Palace site in Lixian county and Huachenggang site in Anxiang county, Hunan reached the boom period of matriarchal clan society 6,500 years ago.


According to archeological excavations from Huachenggang site in Anxiang county and Chegu Mountain site in Huarong county, Hunan entered patriarchal society 5,000 years ago.


2,200 B.C, Hunan entered the late Neolithic Age, with primitive cultivation culture relics spreading over the province.


Ancient residents in Hunan area belong to ancient Miao and Yue clans.


About 1,500 years ago, with the disintegration of primitive societies in most areas, Hunan gradually envovled into class society. After the middle period of the Shang Dynasty (1600 BC-1046 BC), Hunan entered the Bronze Age.


During the Spring and Autumn (770 BC-476 BC) and Warring States (770 BC-221 BC) periods, Hunan was brought into Chu kingdom's territory. With expansive production of brozen, Hunan entered the Iron Age. 


In late Warring State period, Hunan became a stronghold of Chu kingdom, with its economy and culture gaining rapid growth. Changsha and its sourrounding areas developed into a main grain production base of the kingdom.


Changsha Jun (prefecture) and Qianzhong Jun (prefecture) were established during Qin Dynasty, and Lingqu Canal was dug to connect Xiangjiang River and Lijiang River in today's Guangxi province.


In the Western Han Dynasty (206 B.C.- 24 A.D.), a paralle system (allowing the coexistence of kingdom and Jun) was implemented in Hunan, with three Jun namely Guiyang, wuling and Lingling and Changsha kingdom established. Changsha Kingdom was the first feudal vassal state and the king was Wu Rui. In the Eastern Han Dynasty (25-220 A.D.), Changsha Kingdom was changed into Changsha Jun.


Going through the Three Kingdoms, Jin, and the Northern and Southern Dynasty (220 A.D.-581 A.D.), Hunan became a famous grain production area for its political stability and growing economy.


During the Tang Dynasty (618 A.D.-907 A.D.), Hunan occupied parts of the western Jiangnan Dao, the eastern Shannan Dao and Qianzhong Dao. The government office for "Hunan militia officer" was set then, which was the earliest mention of "Hunan" in China's history.


In the Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms Period (907 A.D.- 979 A.D.), Ma Yin established the Post-Chu regime. Hunan became one of the ten separated feudal kingdoms that time.


During the Song Dynasty (960 A.D.-1297 A.D.), Hunan belonged to the Hubei Lu and Hunan Lu of Jinzhou.


Yuan Dynasty (1279 A.D.-1368 A.D.) implemented the provincial system. Except that Yongshun local government belonging to Sichuan province, all the rest of Hunan became under the jurisdiction of Huguang province. Tusi system was implemented in Xiangxi minority settlements.


In Ming Dynasty (1368–1644), Hunan belong to Huguang provincial administrative government. The Tusi system was further completed.


In the third year of the reign of Emperor Kangxi in the Qing Dynasty (1664), left Huguang provincial admistrative government office was set up in Changsha, hence the Hunan province was officially established. 



Important Events in Hunan History


In 1852, Zeng Guofan built Xiang Army in Hunan to suppress the Taiping Rebellion.


In 1989, Hunan became the only province to back the Hundred Days' Reform.


In 1899 and 1904, Yueyang and Changsha were successively opened up as commercial ports under the oppression of imperialism.


In 1903, Huang Xing established the Huaxinghui (China Revival Society) and became one of the key figures of the Tongmenghui (Chinese Revolutionary Alliance).


In April 1918, Mao Zedong and Cai Heseng established Xinmin Institute in Changsha.


In the winter of 1920, the Changsha Socialist Youth League and Changsha Communist Group were set up.


In July 1921, Mao Zedong and He Shuheng attended the First National Congress of Chinese Communist Party. In that October, Hunan Party branch was established and in the ensuing May, the executive committee of CPC Hunan area came into existence.


During the Northern Expedition from 1926 to 1927, Hunan's peasant movement was flourishing, with the participating peasants topped to 6 million.


In September 1927, Mao Zedong led the Autumn Harvest Uprising in Hunan-Jiangxi border and founded the first national rural revolutionary base areas in the Jinggang Mountain.


On November 13th 1938, "Wenxi Fire" destroyed Changsha.


From 1939 to 1942, Japanese army invaded Changsha three times. In 1943, Changde was attacked and in 1945, Xuefeng Mountain battle broke out.


On August 15th, 1945, Japan surrendered unconditionally in Zhijiang, Hunan province.


On August 4th, 1949, the Kuomingtang (KMT) General Cheng Qian and Chen Mingren led the uprising and achieved peaceful liberation for Hunan.


In 1978, four universities, Xiangtan University, Hunan University, Central South Institute of Mining and Metallurgy (now the Central South University) and the Changsha Institute of Technology (now the National University of Defence Technology) were approved as national key universities by the State Council.


In 1979, remedial work was undertaken to develop truth criterion discussions and to redress any unjust, false and wrong cases.


In 1981, chaired by Yuan Longping, one of the most distinguished agricultural experts in Hunan, the 'Super Hybrid Rice' (long shaped) research prize was awarded to Yuan Longping and his team as the first special prize for national scientific and technological inventions since the founding of The People's Republic of China.

In the early 1980s, the household contract responsibility system was implemented and improved throughout the countryside of Hunan Province.


In 1984, the all-round technological system reform was implemented to promote the successful pilot reform experience of the Zhuzhou Electronics Institute.


In 1984, the separation of Government and Community (setting social organization apart from government) and the establishment of Township Government marked the end of the people's commune system.


In 1985, in-depth price reform was implemented throughout the Province, ending the 32-year-old apportioned purchasing system of agricultural by-products.


The Dongting Lake was expanded by one-quarter of its size after the implementation of the Dongting Lake project begun in 1986. (In total the work will be achieved in two phases, one commenced in 1986 and the second one in 1997)


In 1987, poverty relief work was implemented throughout the Province (in 1995, 100 Hope Primary Schools were built in Xiangxi Autonomous Prefecture; in 1998, 3,500 previously impoverished villages were helped out of their predicament).


In 1988, the provincial government issued Hunan Province Urban Housing System Reform Program, implementing all-round housing reform which was completed in 1995.


In 1988, Changsha High-Tech Development Zone, the first high-tech development zone of Hunan Province, was established.This was approved as one of the 27 state-level development zones in 1991 by the State Council. In 1998 the provincial party committee and the provincial government decided to set high-tech industry development as "the first strategic choice", after issuing The Decision of Accelerating the High-tech Industries Development.


In 1991, three international festivals (the International Dragon Boat Festival held in Miluo city, Hunan Province in June 1991; the International Fireworks Festival held in Changsha city, Hunan Province in Septempber 1991; the International Forest Protection Festival held in Zhangjiajie city, Hunan Province in November 1991) were all successfully hosted by Hunan Province, promoting the opening up and reform of Hunan Province.


In 1992 , Wangwang, the first Taiwan-funded enterprise was set up in Wangcheng County (a county directly administered by Changsha).


In 1993, the listing of Changsha Zhongyi Group Co. Ltd and Zhuzhou Torch Spark-Plug Co. Ltd., marked the breakthrough of listed company records in Hunan Province.


In 1994, six deputy department heads were voted via public selection (indicating the cadre system reform).


In the 1990s, the urban and rural market system construction was initiated. Changsha Gaoqiao Market, the largest state-level comprehensive wholesale market in the Province was established in 1996; Changsha Red Star Market of Agricultural Byproducts, the largest comprehensive agricultural market in the Province was established in 1997.


In 1996, the first expressway in Hunan, the Changsha-Xiangtan Expressway, was built and opened to traffic.


The private economy was vigorously developed in Hunan. In 1996, Shaodong County of Hunan Province was identified as the only pilot area for private economic reform and development. In 2006, the private economy accounted for half the economic growth in Shaodong County. In 2007, Sany Co. Ltd. achieved 13.5 billion yuan in sales income, becoming the first private enterprise of Hunan Province whose annual income was more than 100 billion yuan since the founding of The People's Republic of China.


In 1996, the modern enterprise system reform entered a stage of all-round implementation and the development strategy of state enterprises, the principle of " grasping the major issues and letting the minor issues go" was formulated.


In 1996, the quality education experience of Miluo city was promoted throughout the country, marking the beginning of a further 211 educational projects.


The achievement of forestation was significant. In 1997, the Province-wide comprehensive greening project met its target. In 2000, the Returning Farmland to Forest Project was initiated.


Hunan Province has made great efforts in the development of a cultural industry. In 1997, the first programme on Hunan TV was officially transmitted by Asian Satellite No.2 . In 1999, the "first stock" of China media, HUNAN TV&BROADCAST INTERMEDIARY CO., LTD. was listed. In 2000, Changsha City was permanently authorized to host the China Golden Eagle TV Art Festival. The audience rating of 2005 Super-duper Super Girl (China's version of Idol) ranked in the forefront.


In 2003, the activity of "learning from Model Zheng Peimin(a civil servant who devoted himself to public service)" was launched , throughout the Province.


In 2005, the 'carbon / carbon composite material meeting', chaired by Huang Boyun, was awarded first prize for 2004 national technology invention.


In 2005, all the farmers in the province were fully exempted from agricultural taxes.


In 2005, Shaoshan "No. 1 Project" construction, indicating the spiritual civilization construction, was officially initiated.


In 2005, the direct election of candidates for village committee and residents committee was implemented.


In 2006, the Ninth Provincial Party Congress advanced the goal of "Prosperous People and Strong Province", implementing industrialization driving strategy.


In 2007, the City Group of Changsha, Zhuzhou and Xiangtan was approved by the State Council as a comprehensive experimental zone to construct a resource-saving and environment-friendly society.


The GDP (Gross Domestic Product) of Hunan Province is expected to be over 1 trillion yuan in 2008.


Visit Hunan Celebrities to know about the figures in the history of Hunan.


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