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Chinese Smugglers On Post Cards

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Pillar Of The Community
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Posted 03/27/2019   9:02 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this topic Add gettinold to your friends list Get a Link to this Message
Thought this one was interesting...

Ning Po (1753-c. 1938) [Ningpo], 138-foot three-masted Chinese pole-junk built in 1753. Washed ashore near Santa Monica in 1912, the junk,recently a smuggling ship, was bought by the Meteor Co. and brought over to Catalina Island to be used as a Chinese restaurant in Lovers Cove. Her last anchorage was at Ballast Point at the Isthmus. She was beached, and over the years she rotted and sank in the sands of the harbor. In 1938 she was finally burned. At the time of her abandonment Ning Po was one of the oldest vessels afloat. Ning Po had a long and tumultuous career:
1806 seized for smuggling and piracy;
1814 captured and set on fire at Nanking;
1823 seized for smuggling silk and opium;
1834 confiscated by the British under Lord Napier for smuggling and for carrying slave girls to Canton;
1841 captured by the Chinese government and used for seven years as a prison ship for pirates and smugglers. During this time, the Chinese government found some of the prisoners too expensive to feed, and reportedly ordered 158 of them beheaded;
1861 seized by rebels in Taiping and converted into a transport because of her size and speed. Retaken by "Chinese" Gordon, in command of the English Imperial forces against the Taiping rebel. Gordon changed her name to Ning Po meaning "calm waves" or "peaceful waves" and after the city of the same name;
1861 wrecked in a typhoon;
pre-1884 the vessel preyed on tourists in Hong Kong. Passengers were taken of board for a few days' cruise. The unsuspecting passengers would then be robbed and set ashore. The British vessel H.M.S. Calliope captured the Ning Po imprisoned the 60 crewmembers, and sold the vessel in Hong Kong;
1911 captured by rebels in the battle of Hankow and sold to Americans for $50,000; 1912 wrecked in a typhoon on June 12. Wrecked again in a typhoon September 26 off Kyushi, with the loss of the sails and use of the rudder. Crew mutinied and refused to work. Four men rowed the vessel 320 miles back to port. Once in port, the crew were taken in arms. On December 22 of the same year, a new crew sailed the repaired Ningpo 7,000 miles in 55 days to San Pedro;
1913 towed to Venice Beach for display. In April, the junk was towed down to San Diego, and in October she was towed back to San Pedro. In November, the Ning Po wrecked off Dead Man's Island. While being dry-docked and repaired in Long Beach, a small silver plate was found behind one of the "eyes" of the ship. The plate had inscriptions on it that were translated: "The eye of the dragon is bright and colorful." Put on display at Long Beach; * 1915 towed to San Diego and put on display;
c. 1917 towed to Catalina Harbor for display;
1938 burned (possibly for a movie) in Catalina Harbor.

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Edited by gettinold - 03/27/2019 9:05 pm

Pillar Of The Community
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Posted 03/27/2019   9:55 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add No1philatelist to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Definetly an interesting ship for sure. If Ning-po means Calm waves, then at some point in time an appropriate name would have been Stormy Seas. Especially during its dark and sometimes troubling past history.
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