Contributor: C. Peter Chen
ww2dbaseYuan Jinkai (Wade Giles: Yuan Chin-Kai) was born in Liaoyang, Fengtian Province, Manchuria, Qing Dynasty China in 1870. He passed the examination and was awarded a position in government. Just prior to the overthrow of Qing Dynasty, Yuan was the deputy police commander of Liaoyang. In 1911, he became a supporter of Zhang Zuolin, who would soon become the most influential warlord of northeastern China. In early 1913, after the establishment of the Republic of China, he was made the deputy of the temporary government committee of Fengtian Province. In Oct 1913, he was made the head of the Fengtian Treasury Department. In 1915, he was made a legislator representing Fengtian. In 1916, he officially declared his loyalty for Zhang, who made him the chief secretary to the Fentian Army. He was later made the chief secretary of the forces in Heilongjiang Province, which answered to Zhang. While holding several government positions under Zhang, he also held the civilian position as a member of the board of directors of the Chinese Eastern Railway company. After Zhang Zuolin was assassinated and his son Zhang Xueliang took power, Yuan continued to serve, becoming a legislator in Jan 1929. In 1930, he was made the deputy director of the Control Yuan, one of the five main branches of the Republic of China government. Around this time, Zhang Xueliang, who favored a closer tie with the central government, began to distance himself from those who had served his father. The Japanese detected this, and began to court for Yuan's support. After the Japanese instigated the Mukden Incident in 1931, Yuan declared the city of Mukden independent from the Republic of China, and then collaborated with the Japanese in establishing the puppet state of Manchukuo. Between 1932 and 1935, he served on various government committees of Manchukuo, including one which established the constitution. In Feb 1935, he was appointed to the senate. Subsequently, he was made the Lord Keeper of the Privy Seal. He suffered a stroke in Apr 1944; partially paralyzed, he retired from government service. After WW2, he escaped prosecution by both the Soviets and the Chinese Communists as a collaborator. He passed away in Liaoyang in Mar 1947.
ww2dbaseYuan was known as En Kingai in Japanese records, which was the Japanese pronunciation of his Chinese name.
Last Major Revision: Nov 2014
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