The attempt had to be given up and the sails secured to the yards by lashings. September 11th. The dreary, monotonous, unenlivening coast line of China, with its interminable sand hills and granite peaks, once more in sight. The landscapes of north China are, if anything, more dreary than ever. We must however take the bad with the good. Chefoo lies before us, and into Chefoo we are bound to go.
The assault on the land side of Wei-hai-Wei began on January 29, and continued throughout that and the following day. At certain points, where Admiral Ting's squadron was able to act with effect, the Japanese were repulsed, but, eventually, the whole of the land garrison fled panic-stricken to Chefoo.
A few miles from Chefoo excellent sport is to be had, but in Central China they are not often seen, although they do exist, as I have shot one myself near Ngankin. Down south the bamboo partridge abounds in places, but it is a very different bird from the ordinary partridge, and takes its name from the fact that it lives, moves and has its being in bamboo coppices.
What matters it to Nature if a mother at Chefoo or on the banks of the Yangtse offers her bowl of rice with burning incense at some shrine and prays for the return of her son that has fallen unknown for all time on the plains along the Tola, where his bones will dry beneath the rays of Nature's dissipating fire and be scattered by her winds over the sands of the prairie?
The Chinese Government consent that as regards the railway to be built by China herself from Chefoo or Lung kow to connect with the Kiaochow-Tsinanfu railway, if Germany is willing to abandon the privilege of financing the Chefoo-Weihsien line, China will approach Japanese capitalists for a loan. Article 5.
On the following morning the English Admiral and General arrived. They had their interview with the French authorities, and settled that on the 26th the fleets should sail from Talien-Whan and Chefoo respectively to the rendezvous, somewhere opposite Taku. From that point the Admirals and Generals are to proceed on a further exploration, and to effect a disembarkation on the earliest possible day.
We left Chefoo for Japan, calling in at the Golo islands a group about 90 miles from Nagasaki on the way. 'Twas a lovely spot, and recent rains had made nature look all the fairer for her ablutions. The gentle breeze wafted off such a delightful fragrance of pine, fir, hay, and flowers, so welcome after China's reeking smells.
Perhaps the most widespread anti-missionary uprising in China occurred during the years 1870 and 1871. It was during the summer of 1870 that Dr. Talmage was compelled to go to Chefoo, North China, for much-needed rest and change. On August 8th he wrote to Dr. J. M. Ferris: "The next day after my arrival at Chefoo the news was received of the terrible massacre at Tientsin on June 21st.
In company with the "Growler" and "Sylvia" we left the shores of fair Nagasaki; and after despatching the small fry about their business we shaped our course for Chefoo.
At the same time Great Britain had secured further Capitulations in the Chefoo Convention; in 1862 France had acquired Cochin China, in 1864 Cambodia, in 1874 Tongking, and in 1883 Annam. This led in 1884 to war between France and China, in which the French did not by any means gain an indubitable victory; but the Treaty of Tientsin left them with their acquisitions.