In December of 1937, the Japanese Imperial Army marched into China's capital city of Nanjing and launched six weeks of carnage that would become known as the Rape of Nanjing. In addition to the deaths of Chinese POWs and civilians, tens of thousands of women were raped, tortured, and killed by Japanese soldiers. In this traumatic environment, both native and foreign-born inhabitants of Nanjing struggled to carry on with their lives.
This volume collects the diaries and correspondence of Minnie Vautrin, a farmgirl from Illinois who had dedicated herself to the education of Chinese women at Ginling College in Nanjing. Faced with the impending Japanese attack, she turned the school into a sanctuary for ten thousand women and girls. Vautrin's firsthand accounts of daily life in Nanjing and the intensifying threat of Japanese invasion reveal the courage of the occupants under siegeChinese nationals as well as Western missionaries, teachers, surgeons and business peopleand the personal costs of violence in wartime.
Thanks to Vautrin's painstaking effort in keeping a day-to-day account, present-day readers are able to examine this episode of history at close range through her eyes. With detailed maps, photographs, and carefully researched in-depth annotations, Terror in Minnie Vautrin's Nanjing: Diaries and Correspondence, 1937-38 presents a comprehensive and detailed daily account of the events and of life during the horror-stricken days within the city walls and in particular on the Ginling campus. Through chronologically arranged diaries, letters, reports, documents, and telegrams, Vautrin bears witness to those terrible events and to the magnitude of trauma that the Nanjing Massacre exacted on the populace.