Former Residence of Soong Chingling
Soong Ching-ling (1893-1981) was the Vice President of the People's Republic of China. In 1915, She married Sun Yat-sen, a great revolutionary and statesman, who led the 1911 Revolution that overthrew the imperial Qing Dynasty (1644-1911). Soong spent most of her time and energy in maternal and pediatric health care, preschool education and other women and children's issues. The former residence of Soong Ching-ling locates on the north bank of the scenic Houhai, or the Rear Lake, in downtown Beijing. The residence was once a garden of one of the Qing Dynasty's princes' mansions. Covering more than 20,000 square meters, it is a quiet and exquisite courtyard. Soong moved to this mansion in April 1963, she worked, studied and lived here until she passed away in 1981. The state council listed Soong's residence as a key historical and cultural relic under state protection in 1981. So far more than 3.5 million people home and abroad have visited the former residence of Soong Ching-ling
It has a quiet and beautiful courtyard covering an area of more than 7,722 squareyards. Originally, it was Prince Chun's mansion in the late Qing Dynasty (1644- 1911). The whole courtyard is surrounded by a small lake and composed of agrand entrance, side hall, two wing-rooms (the east and west), back house, and a newly-built main building. The grand entrance and back house serve as exhibition halls. Over 400 historical pictures and more than 300 precious cultural relics are exhibited to the public, including a group photo of her and her husband, Dr. Sun Yat Sen, the forerunner of Chinese revolution, a photo taken with Chairman Mao during the Chongqing Negotiation and also some personal objects, such as a small pistol she once carried on her hip.
A short way inside the main gate is a grape arbor, and by it in a flowerbed stands a wooden tablet carved with a brief introduction to the history of the mansion.
Walking northeast form the grape arbor, one comes to the exhibition halls. The auxiliary exhibition hall served as a guest room where Soong Ching Ling received guests from China.
The first exhibition hall is divided into eight sections, each representing a period of Soong Ching Ling's life. The exhibits include large numbers of photographs, documents and objects of interest depicting her childhood and student days, her marriage to Sun Yat-sen, her participation in political activities, he organization of the Association to Safeguard the Rights of the Chinese People and her support of the advocates of resistance to the Japanese invasion. Also on display is a copy of one of Soong Ching Ling's most famous saying, taken from her essay"Sun Yat-sen and His Cooperation with the Communist Party of China."
"Sun Yat-sen's 40 years of political struggle for the Chinese nation and people reached their peak in the last years of his life. The high point of his development came with his decision to cooperate with the Communist Party of China and work for the Chinese revolution."
The second exhibition hall is divided into seven sections with the following titles: Invitation to Come to the North; One of the Founders of New China; Close Comrade-in-Arms of the Party, Beloved Leader of the People; Pioneer in Safeguarding Peace-Envoy of the Chinese people; Study; Life and Work; Great Communist Fight; and the Grief of a Nation, the Sorrow of the World.
The third exhibition hall is the Children's Hall, reflecting Soong Ching Ling's great affection and concern for the youth of China. She once said: "Children are our future, our hope; they are our country's most valuable asset." Included in the exhibition is a painting of a basket of longevity peaches, presented to Soong Ching Ling by the affection which the children of New China feel for her.
The fourth exhibition is a small two-story building. The ground floor contains a small drawing room and a dining room, while Soong Ching Ling's study, office and living quarters are on the second floor. The bedroom, study and dining room are all arranged as they were when Soong Ching Ling lived there. The layout is simple and tasteful. Formerly, Soong Ching Ling would spend her time here playing the qin (Chinese zither), doing embroidery and writing poems and prose.
Address: No.46, North Rive Street in the Rear Lake area of the West City District;
Entry ticket: 20 yuan;
Opening hours: 9:00 AM - 4:00 PM;
Traffict: Bus No.s 5, 27, 44 and 55;
Chinese Scenic Spot-Beijing's Siheyuan
Beijing's historical residences