Saturday, March 21, 2009

Happy Shanghai Day - March 21

March 21st 1937 that is…

In 1937 Shanghai Mayor Wu Te-chen (left) suggested that the city hold an official Shanghai Day. The aim was to boost pride and the prosperity of the city – “one day in which people from all walks of life will be given a chance to forget daily toil and gather together at various celebrations in a spirit of informality and gaiety” Li Ta-chan, Sectional Chief of the City Government told JB Powell’s China Weekly Review.

Apparently it happened and events were attended by representatives of over 20 public organisations and everything was presided over by Sectional Chief Li who ensured informality and gaiety were forthcoming. The plan was for Shanghai Day to become an annual event but the Japanese spoiled the party - in August the bombs fell on the city and by March 1938 China was at war with Japan and nobody felt very gay.

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