By Yuling Chen, Deng Zhang, Yiling Wang, iChongqing
Chongqing Beibei Museum, or Beibei Historical and Cultural Museum, has the most expansive sunken miniaturized landscape among museums in Chongqing. You may wonder what the miniature is about. It is a reproduction of the rural reconstruction history in Beibei.
In the 1920s and 1930s, China launched a rural reconstruction campaign initiated by intellectuals. It aimed to improve the countryside and the social situation.
More than 600 organizations participated in the campaign, and more than 1,000 pilot areas were established in various places. Different rural reconstruction groups with their own features were integrated with one another. They carried out experiments in the countryside and promoted their ideas.
Mr. Lu Zuofu conducted an experiment in Beibei District of Chongqing Municipality, creating Beibei mode– saving the country through industry and commerce. As the founder of Minsheng Company, a shipping company, Mr. Lu practiced his ideas in Beibei District during the War of Resistance.
For more than ten years, he led villagers to build railways, control river beaches, dredge rivers, develop mining, build factories, found banks, build power stations, open post and telecommunications, establish farms, expand trade, organize scientific and technological services. He also attached great importance to culture, education, and health. The reconstruction effort transformed Beibei into a modern city prototype in a short period of 20 years. Beibei exemplifies the successes of the rural reconstruction movement, and continues on that legacy to this day. Lu Zuofu, an initiator and pioneer of Beibei rural reconstruction, “Chinese Ship King” and the “Father of Beibei”, showed his patriotism for the country and his care for the people.
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