Mr. Denby to Mr. Uhl.

No. 2263.]

Sir: The riots in Chengtu, Szechuan, on the 29th, 30th, and 31st ultimo have excited widespread consternation in China.

I have received no direct information from Chengtu or any point on the Yangtze touching these riots. My information was that we had no mission at Chengtu, and on this theory I accounted for the fact that the consul at Hankow had not wired me as to the riots. It appears now that there were the following missions at Chengtu: The Roman Catholic mission, called the “Missions Etrangères de Paris;” the Canadian Methodist mission, of which Rev. V. C. Hart, an American, is a member; the China Inland mission, the Church Missionary Society, and the Methodist Episcopal mission of the United States. The members of the last mission are Rev. H. Olen Cady and Mrs. Cady, Dr. H. L. Canright and Mrs. Canright, and another newly married couple.

These riots are inexplicable except on the theory of official connivance. The Missions Etrangères was a strong, powerful mission, numbering many members, having three great churches and all appliances necessary for charitable and religious work. I think it was established at Chengtu in 1715.

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It is difficult to conceive how, after nearly two centuries of successful labor, there could exist at Chengtu any popular animosity sufficient to account for such a terrible uprising against the foreign missionaries. The world is forced to conclude that these riots were fomented by the viceroy, Liu Ping-chang. He has been viceroy of Szechuan during the past nine years, and he has always antagonized Christian and foreign methods. He has now been superseded, and it is surmised that he desired to signalize his departure by outrages against the detested foreigner. The Catholic bishop has added his testimony to other proof that Liu Ping-chang was the organizer of these outrages.

I will take appropriate official action as soon as I receive an official statement of the facts. Meantime measures have been taken by the Imperial Government to prevent the spread of riotous sentiment to the towns along the Yangtze.

I have, etc.,

Charles Denby