Chahar (province)

Chahar (察哈爾 in pinyin: cha2 ha1 er3), also known as Chaha'er, Chakhar, or Qahar, was a 24-year-old province of China established in 1912 now mostly in Inner Mongolian Autonomous Region. It is named after the Chahar Mongolians.

  • Abbreviation: 察
  • Capital: Zhangjiakou Subprefecture (張家口廳 zhang1 jia1 jou3 ting1), also known as the Zhang Capital (張垣 zhang1 yuan1), known in Mongolian as Kalgan. (Now Zhangjiakou City, Hebei)
  • Chairman: Zhang Zizhong (張自忠)

Table of contents
1 Administration and history
2 Geography
3 Subdivision

Administration and history

In the Qing Empire, Chahar was not a province, but a Special Region called Zhangyuan (張垣特區), although Yao Xiguang (姚錫光) proposed making Chahar a province in his "A Humble Suggestion on Planning of Mongolia" (《籌蒙芻議》 chou2 meng2 chu2 yi4).

In 1913, the second year of the Republic of China, Chahar Special Administrative Region was created as a subdivision of Zhili (直隸) Province, containing 6 Bannerss and 11 counties:

  • Zhangbei (張北)
  • Duolun (多倫)
  • Guyuan (沽源)
  • Shangdu (商都)
  • Baochang (寶昌)
  • Kangbao (康保)
  • Xinghe (興和)
  • Taolin (陶林)
  • Ji'ning (集寧)
  • Fengcheng (豐鎮)
  • Liangcheng (涼城)

In 1928, it became a province. The last five counties on the above list (starting from Xinghe) were partitioned to Suiyuan. And 10 counties were included from Xuanhua Subprefecture (宣化府), Koubei Circuit (口北道), Hebei Province:
  • Xuanhua (宣化)
  • Chicheng (赤城)
  • Wanchuan (萬全)
  • Huailai (懷來)
  • Wei (蔚 wei4)
  • Yangyuan (陽原)
  • Longguan (龍關)
  • Yanqing (延慶)
  • Huai'an (懷安)
  • Zhuolu (涿鹿 zhuo1 lu4)

All banners belong to the Xilinguole Alliance (錫林郭勒盟).

From 1937 to 1945, it was occupied by Japan and made a part of Mengjiang, a Japanese-controlled region led by Prince Demchugdongrub the Xilinguole Alliance. The Chahar People's Anti-Japanese Army Alliance (察哈爾民眾抗日同盟軍) was established in Kalgan in May 26, 1933 by Feng Yuxiang (馮玉祥) and Ji Hongchang (吉鴻昌).

In 1952, six years after becoming communist, the province was abolished and divided into parts of Inner Mongolia, Beijing Municipality, and Hebei.

Geography

In the middle of North Chahar, there stretches a desert into Mongolia.

Subdivision

Divided by the Great Wall, Chahar has two parts:

  • South Chahar (察南)
  • North Chahar (察北)

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