893.00/7580: Telegram

The Minister in China ( MacMurray ) to the Secretary of State

347. 1. Following is summary of telegram of August 23, 1 p.m., received from American consul general at Hankow: Southern forces under Chiang Kai-shek having captured Milo and Pingkiang are advancing in general direction of Yochow and Wuchang and are within about 80 miles of latter place and may capture Yochow at any moment. While capture of Wuchang is not imminent, inadequacy of numbers of retreating troops and their low morale coupled with shortage of munitions and supplies have caused them steadily to lose ground, and control of territory between Hankow and Canton may be decided in 1 or at most 2 weeks. Arrival of Wu Pei-fu, Hankow, momentarily expected, and his followers there express confidence that he will master situation, in which view Lockhart18 concurs. It appears trains being held at Yochow for purpose of evacuating Wu’s troops to Wuchang. Chinese in Hankow are particularly concerned lest situation has been permitted to go too far and possibility of Cantonese domination not relished.

2. I am further reliably informed that the Southern forces have now reached a point midway between Yochow and Hankow.

MacMurray
  1. Frank P. Lockhart, consul general at Hankow.