Storing the Memory of an Old City

2018-09-14
Jishanfang Lane, an ancient corner of Hangzhou city, has plenty of stories to tell and by visiting here you too will be able to store wonderful memories of this old city.


The story goes that in Southern Song Dynasty, Jishanfang Lane was called Shangbaixi Lane – a place where a lot of artists once lived, which included those who made a living by performing Chinese opera, beating drums and gongs, and juggling.

By the period of Qing Dynasty, Huangji, a scholar and high-ranking official lived in the lane, and by entering the lane from Zhongshanzhong Road, you will find his former residence at No.3-5.

As a high-ranking official for more than 40 years, Huangji was respected for his attitude, actions and filial piety for his grandmother, and was granted the honor of “A respectable official of high morality”. Huangji’s Grandmother lived to be 104 years old, which was very rare in ancient times. People believe it was related to the kind behaviors of her posterity. From then on, the name of the lane was changed to Jishanfang Lane (merit lane) as well as Baisuili (longevity lane).


No.8 is also intriguing and old people from the lane will happily tell you that this was the former residence of another celebrity, Qian Xuesen, the Father of Chinese Missiles. This two-storey wooden cottage has several rooms in a row and is divided into two courtyards, with mottled walls depicting the history of this place.
When referring to Jishanfang Lane, Dahua Story-telling House should not be missed, as numerous memories of local Hangzhou residents are stored here.


Dahua Story-telling House is a well-known professional story-telling house that opened in Jishanfang Lane in 1952 and although it was removed from Jishanfang Lane in 2001, it seems the voices of Pingtan (story-telling and ballad singing in dialect) are still lingering around the lane.