Chinese Taiping Rebel Pass sold at auction for $7000

Chinese Taiping Rebel Pass sold at auction for $7000

I am not sure of the exact date of this but I know it was in the mid to late 1800s.  This is a pass allowing the bearer to travel into rebel-held territory with the rebel seal attached. This was sent by O. B. Bradford to his daughter Josie and is in an official Consulate General of the United States Shanghai, China envelope.  O. B. Bradford was appointed to China by President Lincoln.

The Taiping Rebellion was a widespread civil war in southern China from 1850 to 1864, led by heterodox Christian convert Hong Xiuquan, against the ruling Qing Dynasty. About 20 million people died, mainly civilians, in one of the deadliest military conflicts in history. Chinese Taiping Rebel Pass sold at auction for $7000

Hong established the Taiping Heavenly Kingdom, officially the “Heavenly Kingdom of Great Peace”, with its capital at Nanjing. The Kingdom’s Army controlled large parts of southern China, at its height containing about 30 million people. The rebels attempted social reforms and the replacement of Confucianism, Buddhism and Chinese folk religion with a form of Christianity. Troops were nicknamed the Long hair. The Taiping areas were besieged by Qing forces throughout most of the rebellion. The Qing government defeated the rebellion with the eventual aid of French and British forces.

In the 20th century, China’s communist leader Mao Zedong glorified the Taipings as early heroic revolutionaries against a corrupt feudal system. More recently, a total rethinking has occurred in China on the destruction that the rebellion had caused to the Chinese nation, plus the dangers of radical religiosity.

Chinese Taiping Rebel Pass sold at auction for $7000Chinese Taiping Rebel Pass sold at auction for $7000Envelope US consulate Shanghai

The Taiping Rebellion, also known as the Taiping Civil War or the Taiping Revolution, was a massive rebellion or civil war in China that was waged from 1850 to 1864 between the established Manchu-led Qing dynasty and the Taiping Heavenly Kingdom. Chinese Taiping Rebel Pass sold at auction for $7000

Led by Hong Xiuquan, the self-proclaimed brother of Jesus Christ, the goals of the Taipings were religious, nationalist, and political in nature; they sought the conversion of the Chinese people to the Taiping’s syncretic version of Christianity, the overthrow of the ruling Manchus, and a wholesale transformation and reformation of the state. Rather than simply supplanting the ruling class, the Taipings sought to upend the moral and social order of China. To that end, they established the Taiping Heavenly Kingdom as an oppositional state based in Tianjing (present-day Nanjing) and gained control of a significant part of southern China, eventually expanding to command a population base of nearly 30 million people.

Chinese Taiping Rebel Pass sold at auction for $7000

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  1. Hello,
    I have an identical tissue-paper hand-written “translation” in brown-ink of a Taiping Pass (like the center photo) complete with the small red wax seal in the upper left corner; but I lack the printed Pass itself. I also have some other Taiping proclamations (which I assume are copies or fakes). I wonder how many other of the tissue-translations there are and whether my piece is real or not (?). Any information would be appreciated.

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