Site of the First National Congress of the Communist Party of China
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The Site of the First National Congress of the Communist Party of China in Shanghai was opened to the public as a museum in 1961. It has since received millions of visitors with a large percentage of them being members of the Communist Party of China on educational field trips. More than 832,000 people visited the Site of the First National Congress of the Communist Party of China in 2017 alone.
The museum is located inside the two-story Shikumen building (built in 1920) where thirteen Chinese party delegates and two foreign Comintern representatives (the Dutch communist Henk Sneevliet and Vladimir Nikolsky from the Soviet Union) assembled to hold the First National Congress of the Communist Party of China on the 23rd of July 1921. Just a few weeks earlier on July 1st, China's Communist Party had been founded in the French concession of Shanghai by Chen Duxiu and Li Dazhao. The original founders did not attend the First National Congress though Chen Duxiu was represented by Bao Huiseng. The thirteen Chinese party delegates at the First National Congress were: Li Da (Shanghai), Li Hanjun (Shanghai), Zhang Guotao (Beijing), Liu Renjing (Beijing), Mao Zedong (Changsha), He Shuheng (Changsha), Dong Biwu (Wuhan), Chen Tanqiu (Wuhan), Wang Jinmei (Jinan), Deng Enming (Jinan), Chen Gongbo (Guangzhou), Zhou Fohai (representing Chinese students in Japan) and Bao Huiseng (representing the absent Chen Duxiu). Only two of the assembled thirteen Chinese delegates - Mao Zedong and Dong Biwu - would be present 27 years later at the founding of the People's Republic of China. The First National Congress of the Communist Party of China continued in Shanghai until July 30th. Due to police harassment, its conclusion had to be moved then and took place on the 2nd of August 1921 on a rented tourist boat on Jiaxing's South Lake. You can read more about the events of this historic period in the Republic of China section of this website.
The founding congress of the CPC took place in the living room that is situated on the first floor of the building. Everything is preserved there as it was back then. A long rectangular table covered with tea cups occupies the middle of the small room. Wooden stools surround the table and a tea table stands next to one of the side walls.
The upper floor of the building serves as a large exhibition hall. On a floor space of about 450 square meters you will find hundreds of exhibits relating to this historic period, from revolutionary relics to historic documents and photographs. The exhibits serve to illustrate the important events in the early history of the Communist Party of China.
The second floor also includes a wax figure hall that gives you the impression to travel back in time to witness this historic event first hand. It shows the thirteen Chinese delegates and two foreign observers huddled around a table. Mao Zedong who later founded the People's Republic of China in 1949 stands in the center to give a speech that is attentively listened to by the other attendees of the congress.