Sun Yat-sen Letter

BC Archives MS-1027

This letter was hand written in 1911 by Dr. Sun Yat-sen to Lim Li Bang, a Victoria Chinese businessman. Lim was one of the important overseas Chinese leaders who played a key role in Chinese history.

1911 was a monumental year for China. It signaled the year of Xinhai on the Chinese zodiac, famous for the Xinhai revolution, which marked the end of imperial governance in China.

Not many people know that the Chinese in BC fundraised to make the largest contribution to China’s revolutionary efforts in the 1911 Chrysanthemum Revolution, the sacrifice of which led to the success of the Xinhai Revolution. Victoria’s Chinese helped make this historical turning point possible.

Summary of the March 5, 1911 letter:

Dr. Sun confirms that the Vancouver Chinese Freemasons have sent $900 to Lim Li Bang’s bank to cover the money Dr. Sun borrowed.
The Vancouver Chinese Freemasons, Dr. Sun writes, are unable to mortgage their buildings immediately, but are planning to send about $20,000 in member donations. These funds will help meet the urgent needs of the revolution in China.

He asks Lim to lead fundraising efforts in Victoria. Lim and others who donate to the revolution, he reasons, will help save China and protect family members still living there. Everyone has an obligation to help his fellow countrymen, who are sacrificing for the cause.

Finally, he asks Lim to send any donations he receives directly to Hong Kong, as before, on his behalf.

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This object selected by Dr. Tzu-I Chung. View Profile »