The Post-War Period

After the War, Ting was assigned to rehabilitate the Shanghai Inspectorate but Little stayed in the Chongqing Inspectorate to prepare to move back to Shanghai. Ting properly assigned the Chinese staff who served the Kishimoto Customs Service to new posts and successfully recovered the Shanghai Inspectorate’s full function in 3 months. But his success made the DIG more powerful than the IG. Factionalism between the IG and the DIG was not the most devastating factor in this period. The Civil War between the KMT and the CCP from Manchuria to southern China dragged the post-war economy into the quagmire of hyper-inflation. The CMCS could not maintain its traditionally high salary and pension. The staff’s morale was low and the integrity deteriorated. Before the CCP took over Shanghai, Little decided to evacuate to Guangzhou with the Li Zongren Nationalist Government, but Ting decided, or was instructed, rather to stay in Shanghai to protect the Inspectorate. Hereafter, the CMCS was, once again, separated into two parts.

In late 1949, the CCP renamed the CMCS to the People’s Maritime Customs Service (PMCS). Ting Kwei-tang’s cooperation with the CCP made his career very successful in the PMCS. He was appointed Deputy Director General of the Directorate General of Customs and the Director General (DG) was a CCP intelligent master, Kong Yuan (孔原). This kind of pattern also applied to other local Customs station – a CCP cadre and a deputy chosen from the old Chinese staff.

Little only stayed in Guangzhou for about half year and moved the Inspectorate to Taipei. The Guangzhou Inspectorate’s condition was merely slightly better than the Chongqing Inspectorate of 1941-1945. He only had less than several Chinese and foreign staff members but he still managed to look after them. Before he retired from the CMCS, he paid off all foreign staff members and the Chinese staff he had brought to Taipei. Unlike his predecessor, Little was the last foreign employee leaving Taiwan with a Gold Medal of the Order of the Brilliant Star (景星勳章). Little left his Chinese colleagues a functional Inspectorate in Taipei. The 96-year history of the foreign Inspectorate officially ended here.

About Hsin-I (Sandy) Chien

Research Assistant at GIS Center, Research Center for Humanities and Social Sciences, Academia Sinica Research Assistant for Research Project on China's Customs Services 1854-Present MA in Renaissance and 18th Century Literature, University of Liverpool BA in Foreign Languages and Literature, Tunghai University
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