Chinese gunboat Zhongshan

SS Zhongshan,[1]formerlyromanized as Chung Shan,[2][3] was a Chinesegunboat of 780 tons. Built in Japan in 1913, it was originally known as the SS Yongfeng[4] (romanized at the time as Yung Feng[5] or Wong Feng)[6] before being renamed in 1925 in honor of Sun Yat-sen, better known in China as Sun Zhongshan. This ship and others of its class are frequently classified as gunboats.

History
Republic of China
Ordered 1910
Builder Mitsubishi Shipbuilding Nagasaki Dockyard
Laid down 1910
Launched 1912
Commissioned 1913
Maiden voyage March 1913
Renamed 1925
Fate Sunk during the Battle of Wuhan on October 24, 1938
Status Recovered in 1997, restored as a museum ship
General characteristics
Class and type Yongfeng-class gunboat
Displacement 780 tons
Length 65.873 m (216.12 ft)
Beam 8.8 m (29 ft)
Draught 3.048 m (10.00 ft)
Speed 14 knots (26 km/h; 16 mph)
Complement 140
Armament
SS Zhongshan
Traditional Chinese 中山
Simplified Chinese 中山
Postal SS Chung Shan
Transcriptions
Standard Mandarin
Hanyu Pinyin Zhōngshān Jiàn
Wade–Giles Chung-shan Chien
Yue: Cantonese
Jyutping Zung1-saan1 Laam6
SS Yongfeng
Traditional Chinese
Simplified Chinese
Postal SS Yung Feng
Transcriptions
Standard Mandarin
Hanyu Pinyin Yǒngfēng Jiàn
Wade–Giles Yung-feng Chien
Yue: Cantonese
Jyutping Wing1-fung5 Laam6

. . . Chinese gunboat Zhongshan . . .

SS Yongfeng was the first of four 780-ton Yongfeng-class gunboats ordered from Mitsubishi by the Qing Empire in 1910.[7] Under the deal signed between the Qing naval minister Prince Rui, his deputy Admiral Sa Zhenbing, and the Japanese, the first two ships were built in Japan and the second pair at Jiangnan Shipyard in China with Japanese technical help. All four ships differed slightly from one another. Due to their small size (less than 1000 tons displacement), these ships are also frequently referred as gunboats.

Model of SS Zhongshan

Yongfeng entered service as part of the Beiyang Fleet.[8] In March 1913, it sailed to Shanghai, where it was based at Yuezhou.[9]

It sailed south with Sun Yat-sen in July 1917,[8][9] subsequently forming part of the Nationalist navy at Guangzhou (then “Canton”).

Just prior to Ye Ju‘s assault of the presidential palace on 16 June 1922, Sun Yat-sen fled to the Guangzhou naval yard[5] and took refuge aboard SS Haiqi (then Hai Ch’i“), a cruiser. From there, he transferred to the gunboatSS Yongfeng,[10] where he was joined by Chiang Kai-shek around the 27th[5] or 29th.[11]Yongfeng and other loyal ships then fought past Pearl River fortresses controlled by Chen Jiongming[12] while launching assaults and negotiating with the Guangzhou leadership for about 50 days.[8] It avoided reprisals by anchoring off Huangpu, surrounded by foreign vessels Chen could not risk firing upon.[5] Finally, Sun and Chiang left aboard a British ship to Hong Kong on 9 August,[11] whence they departed for Shanghai.[8] The Yongfeng carried Sun and his wife to Hong Kong in November 1924.[9]

On April 13, 1925, the ship was renamed in honor of Sun Yat-sen,[9]better known in China as “Sun Zhongshan”, following his death the previous month.

In November 1925, the Nationalist navy was placed under the direction of the Soviet adviser Andrei S. Bubnov, who named the CommunistLi Zhilong as its head.[13] The voyage of Zhongshan and Baobi from Guangzhou to Huangpu (“Whampoa”) on 18 March 1926 set off the “Canton Coup“.[13]

She patrolled the southern coasts of China against pirates after the Northern Expedition. She rescued Xinhua(Hsin Wah) in 1928.[14]

In the Second Sino-Japanese War, the Chinese theater of World War II, SS Zhongshan participated in the Battle of Wuhan. She was bombed and sunk in the Yangtze River by the Japanese on 24 October 1938 with 25 casualties, including Captain Sa Shijun, a nephew of Sa Zhenbing.

. . . Chinese gunboat Zhongshan . . .

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. . . Chinese gunboat Zhongshan . . .

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