1900 American Press Association Boxer Rebellion Broadside

Special Feature No. 32 - Timely Chinese Cuts No. 4. - Main View

1900 American Press Association Boxer Rebellion Broadside


Unique broadside promoting News Syndication related to the Boxer Rebellion.


Special Feature No. 32 - Timely Chinese Cuts No. 4.
  1900 (dated)     22 x 14 in (55.88 x 35.56 cm)


This is a fascinating 1900 American Press Association broadside of the Boxer Rebellion its syndicated content. It is a unique example of how syndication agencies promoted themselves to newspapers around the country. Syndication agencies provided newspapers with up-to-date reporting that could be printed in regional publications, giving small town papers national and global coverage.
A Closer Look
The broadside features six illustrations that subscribing newspapers could use, each providing insight into the Boxer Rebellion. The top left is a map covering from Bohai Bay (Gulf of Pechili) to Beijing (Pekin) by way of Tianjin (Tientsin). Other towns and villages are marked, along with the railway connecting Beijing with Tianjin and Tangku. Three of the other illustrations are portraits of important individuals, such as the American general leading the relief expedition, the British customs agent in Beijing, and the six ambassadors who were in Beijing during the event. The final two illustrations include a street view of Beijing and a depiction of captured Boxers awaiting execution.
Newspaper Syndication
News syndication is a system whereby a central press organization creates and sells content to other newspapers. One of the earliest cases of syndication in the United States happened in 1841, when a newspaperman in New York City printed special editions of President John Tyler's annual speech to Congress and then sold them to various newspapers. The first syndicate was operating by the end of 1861. The American Press Association (who published this piece) was one of the first news agencies in the United States concerned only with providing syndicated material. They promoted their work with pieces like the present broadside. Newspaper syndication grew nationally, leading to publishing conglomerates and a homogenization of American news. By the turn of the 20th century, news agencies were providing their clients with complete printing plates of their material (so each newspaper did not have to set their own type), which allowed images to be syndicated as well.
The Boxer Rebellion or Yihetuan Movement
The Boxer Rebellion or Yihetuan Movement (1899 - 1901, 義和團運動) was an anti-foreign anti-imperialist uprising marked by proto-nationalism in northeastern China. The rebellion was largely a response to Christian missionary activity in China and was initially supported by the Qing Empress Dowager Cixi and her ministers who distrusted the radical and unpredictable peasant movement but sympathized with their goal of driving foreign influence out of China. In June of 1900, some 20,000 Boxers, convinced that their spiritual and martial prowess gave them immunity to foreign weapons, attacked the Chinese Christians and foreign nationals living in Beijing's Legation Quarter. Although terrible violence ensued, the Legation Quarter was able to mount a ragtag defense – which is outlined on this map. Relief came about a month later in the form of the Eight-Nation Alliance China Relief Force, which, with an army of some 20,000, defeated the Boxers and occupied Beijing, as well as several other northern Chinese cities. The atrocities and looting that ensued, particularly at the hands of Russian and Japanese forces, are well documented and horrifying.
Publication History and Census
This broadside was created and published by the American Press Association in 1900. This is the only known surviving example.


The American Press Association (1882 - Present) is a non-governmental news press organization and is considered to be the oldest news press agency in the United States. Founded in Chicago by Major Orlando J. Smith, a U.S. Civil War veteran and American philosopher, Smith was a former editor of the Terre Haute Mail. In 1878 he moved the Mail to Chicago and renamed it the Chicago Express. He began syndicating Edgar Wilson Nye's work in 1891. The American Press Association moved to New York City soon after its founding and continues to operate to this day. More by this mapmaker...


Good. Infill to left and right edges. Heavy toning. Light wear along original fold lines. Text on verso.