A native woman carrying buckets

Fuzhou, Fujian 1871

archive photo of a woman in traditional Chinese costume carrying two buckets on a yoke

© The Wellcome Library, London

This photograph was taken near a tea plantation on terraced hills just outside Fuzhou. Terraced fields were common in the Fujian countryside. To fertilize them the native women had to transport human manure from the city of Fuzhou. They did not bind their feet and they carried the same burdens as the men did. Hard work rendered these women strong and healthy. According to Thomson, "their olive cheeks are warmed with a glow of colour".

Chinese translation

A pdf of the information about this image in Chinese is also available to download:

Chinese translation: A native woman carrying buckets label text