The Chinese Labour Corps

Sign

The gravestones in my previous post can all found at the remarkable Chinese cemetery at Noyelles-sur-Mer at the mouth of the River Somme. Why here? Because Noyelles was the base of the Chinese Labour Corps during World War I. Here are some more photos of the cemetery and its fine Chinese arch.

arch

Arch2

The South China Morning Post has a fine introduction to the Chinese Labour Corps here. Something like 150,000 labourers left China to work in France, Russia, and elsewhere, digging trenches, working in munitions factories, and repairing tanks among many other tasks. They provided invaluable service to the allied cause. 

However, we need to understand why these labourers were still dying in their hundreds after the Great War came to an end. That will be the topic of my next post.