Nanking, Hankow, Changsha, and Nanchang, 1937-1938



Nanking, Hankow, Changsha, and Nanchang, 1937-1938



Chennault, Claire Lee, 1893-1958


Black and white film taken by Chinese Air Force Interpreter P.Y. Shu (no sound). The footage was recorded by Shu as he traveled with Col. Claire Chennault to aid the Chinese Air Force in training and establishing the American Volunteer Group (AVG). The footage documents Shu's travel and family as well as Chennault's and the AVG's activities during the Second Sino-Japanese War.

Time-stamped scene list: 00:00 Chinese buildings and museum of history. 00:15 Chennault and a Chinese officer on steps in front of a building. P. Y. Shu walks to camera in front of a building. Chennault and Colonel Lee Hwei Don, who was evaluated from Nanking. 00:45 View of ocean. Chinese refugees. View of residential area. 01:07 Hankow harbor and city in snow in 1938. A clock tower (Hankow custom house). 02:40 People set off firecrackers. Crowd in front of the clock tower. View of Hankow Harbor by the Yangtse River. 06:05 British flag on ground (British international section). Black smoke rises from a city on the other side of the shore. Aerial shot of a city. 07:09 A group of military personnels on a field. Chennault with 2 pilots of the International SQ. 7:30 Smoke rises from a crashed plane in a airfield. Pilots watch the accident. Airfield construction in Hankow. Chinese workers. 08:00 Chennault and pilots on an airfield. Training planes in the air. Landing planes. A plane hid under straw. Chennault listens to Chinese pilots talking about flight experience. Crews work on a training plane. Johnny Allison and International pilots. 8:40 Chennault in a cockpit of training plane. Black smoke rises from a distant city. 09:17 Funeral of American soldiers. 10:10 A German pilot with Chinese sign (blood chit) on his jacket. Funeral of soldiers. Chennault among the pall bearers. 10:45 Building and campus of a junior high school. Grave stones. School buildings. P.Y. Shu's mother in front of a building in Chang Shia, Hunan province. 11:43 P. Y. Shu carried in a basket. An old Chinese man and a Chinese officer. 11:50 View of a valley in Hankow. P.Y. Shu in front of a building. 12:19 Wreckages of a training plane.


World War II




In Copyright


Grand Valley State University. University Libraries. Special Collections & University Archives






Moving Image




P.Y. Shu, “Nanking, Hankow, Changsha, and Nanchang, 1937-1938,” Digital Collections, accessed September 30, 2023,
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