Carl Crow - A Tough Old China Hand: The Life, Times, and by Paul French

By Paul French

The 1st biography of Carl Crow - one of many best-known and so much winning americans to dwell and paintings in Shanghai among the wars. After a profitable profession as a newspaperman and the owner of China's biggest advertisements service provider within the Thirties he went directly to write over a dozen books on China together with the easiest promoting sequence of anecdotes of his time in Shanghai: 400 Million Customers.

Carl Crow arrived in Shanghai in 1911 and made the town his domestic for the subsequent area of a century, operating there as a journalist, newspaper owner, and groundbreaking adman. He additionally did stints as a hostage negotiator, emergency police sergeant, gentleman farmer, go-between for the yankee executive, and propagandist. As his profession improved, so did the fortunes of Shanghai. the town remodeled itself from a lifeless colonial backwater while Crow arrived, to the thriving and ruthless cosmopolitan city of the Thirties whilst Crow wrote his pioneering publication – four hundred Million shoppers – that inspired a flood of companies into the China marketplace in an interesting foreshadowing of today's boom.

Among Crow's exploits have been attending the negotiations in Peking that ended in the autumn of the Qing Dynasty, getting a scoop on eastern interference in China in the course of the First global warfare, negotiating the discharge of a gaggle of Western hostages from a mountain bandit lair, and being one of many first Westerners to trip up the Burma highway throughout the moment global struggle. He met lots of the significant figures of the time, together with solar Yat-sen, Chiang Kai-shek, the Soong sisters, and Mao's second-in-command Zhou En-lai. in the course of the moment global warfare, he labored for American intelligence along Owen Lattimore, coordinating US guidelines to help China opposed to Japan.

The tale of this one remarkable guy supplies us a wealthy view of Shanghai and China in the course of these tempestuous years. this can be a publication for all with an curiosity in Shanghai and China of this era, and people with an curiosity within the improvement of journalism and enterprise there.

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In later years the paper became an outright apologist for Japanese excesses. 1O The English language press in Shanghai may have been British-dominated Ralph Shaw described it as a “ transplanted Fleet Street"ll - but Crow had other ideas. The American-funded China Press 12 was originally started by Wu Ting-fang and Y. C. Tong (both of whom had previously worked together for the Chinese Telegraph Administration in Shanghai) , as well as Crow's first mentor in Shanghai Tom “ Tommie" Millard. It was to be a truly intemational newspaper with headlines dictated by world events and not dissimilar in layout to the New York Herald-Tribune.

He went so far as to install several prominent Chinese on the paper's board of directors and actively sought to promote China stories to the front pages using the adage that news about China should be treated in the same way as the big New York papers covered US news. Crow's quick adoption of a pro-Chinese viewpoint virtually immediately after he arrived in Shanghai was undoubtedly a result of his close contact with Millard. Prior to moving to Shanghai, Crow had never really evinced any strong opinions on China, the Chinese or the Orient.

Alarm reached such levels in Shanghai that many women and children were dispatched homewards to safety by boat until things calmed down. Meanwhil巴, along the reaches of the upper Yangtze , Manchu Bannermen were deserting to the r 38 CARL CROW - A TOUGH OLD CHINA HAND fact that they were also acting as a police force in places where a modem constabulary did not yet exis t. Being a soldier could be honorable but to be reduced largely to collecting taxes and keeping drunks of the street was frankly demeaning.

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