Changchun is the provincial capital of Jilin province, located in the northeast China. The city was given the name Changchun because it is hoped that this city could have long spring in its development after the war. In fact, Changchun is not only a window of north China, but also a hub of politics, economy, culture, finance, trade and transportation of northeast China.
Changchun is a young city with a long history. Changchun was initially established on imperial decree as a small trading post and frontier village during the reign of the Jiaqing Emperor in the Qing dynasty. Trading activities mainly involved furs and other natural products during this period. In 1800, the Jiaqing Emperor selected a small village on the east bank of the Yitong River and named it "Changchun Ting". At the end of 18th century peasants from overpopulated provinces such as Shandong and Hebei began to settle in the region. In 1889, the village was promoted into a city known as "Changchun Fu".
Known locally as China's "City of Automobiles", Changchun is an important industrial base with a particular focus on the automotive sector. Because of its key role in the domestic automobile industry, Changchun was sometimes referred to as the "Detroit of China." Apart from this industrial aspect, Changchun is also one of four "National Garden Cities" awarded by the Ministry of Construction of P.R. China in 2001 due to its high urban greening rate.
In 1936, the Japanese established Unit 100 to develop plague biological weapons, although the declared purpose of Unit 100 was to conduct research about diseases originating from animals. During the Second Sino-Japanese War (1937–1945) and World War II the headquarters of Unit 100 ("Wakamatsu Unit") was located in downtown Hsinking, under command of veterinarian Yujiro Wakamatsu. This facility was involved in research of animal vaccines to protect Japanese resources, and, especially, biological-warfare. Diseases were tested for use against Soviet and Chinese horses and other livestock. In addition to these tests, Unit 100 ran a bacteria factory to produce the pathogens needed by other units. Biological sabotage testing was also handled at this facility: everything from poisons to chemical crop destruction.
After hundreds of years’ suffering and decades of development, Changchun now has become a center of economy, politics and culture in northeast China. Represented by its scenic spots including the Imperial Palace of Manchu State and the Changbai Mountain, Changchun is a city with a long history and splendid natural beauty. No wonder hundreds of thousands of tourists from home and abroad go to visit Changchun every year.