The Memorial Hall of Sun Yat-sen

Memorial HallThere are many memorial halls in China and that at the foot of Mount Yuexiu in Guangzhou is a world famous shrine of culture in history. Besides that, the other famous ones include those at the Fragrant Hill of Beijing, Wuzhou of the Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, Haikou of Hainan Province, and Meizhou of Guangdong Province. The Memorial Hall of Sun Yat-sen is not only a memorial hall for Sun Yat-sen but the second largest after that in Guangzhou City.This hall is located at Sunwen Middle Road of Zhongshan City, taking a conspicuous place, betraying the local people’s exceptional love for him.

In history this place was called “Renshan,” in honor of the offices of different dynasties. Later it was used for a sports ground and the People’s Square. The memorial hall was built with the 10 million HK dollars donated by Guo Desheng, a Hong Kong celebrity in 1982. The building was started in February 1982 and completed in October 1983. It covers 84,000 square meters and a floorage of 150 thousand square meters, constituting a grand complex.

It is a 3-story palatial standing 36 meters high, and there are 32 3-story-high square stone pillars in front of it. Behind the pillars are cream walls made of bricks shaped like the stones of Mount Tai. Above the gate of the hall is a horizontal plaque with golden inscriptions reading “Memorial Hall of Sun Yat-sen” written by Liao Chengzhi the former Vice Chairman of the People’s Congress. On top of the hall is an 8-gabled pavilion and in the middle of the front outside door hung a vertical plaque reading “The World Is for the Public.” In the middle of the hall stands Sun Yat-sen’s bust of white marble. On both sides of the hall are the exhibition rooms where the revolutionary stories and the achievements of Zhongshan City are on display. The core of the hall is a big modern conference room, a place for city-level major meetings and important activities, which seats 1,484 people and is equipped with a revolving stage and a hoistable music stage. An astounding feature of the hall is that there are 10 kapok trees in front of the hall that are in full blossom at the end of spring, which crimson the sky, symbolizing the fiery and flowering revolutionary undertaking that time. From a bird’s-eye view, this building looks like a square with a line splitting it from the middle while viewed horizontally it is shaped like three hills with the middle one higher than the others.

For the convenience of the tourists and travelers to shop, there are shops for souvenirs, stamps and handicrafts in front of the hall and on the left of it.

In 1984 and 1997, in the campaign of deciding the “10 New Scenic Spots of Zhongshan,” this hall was enlisted and named as “Renshan Celestial Palace” to embody the name characteristic of this place and the grandeur of the building in an effort to highlight Sun Yat-sen’s perserverance, and ambition for a better way of living for the people of China. You cannot come to Zhongshan without visiting this place.

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