William Fleming—“Gospel Shark”: The First CIM Missionary Martyr

From the beginning, danger was one of the key motifs found in the records of missionaries of the China Inland Mission. The frequent itinerant evangelistic trips taken by Hudson Taylor and his colleagues to the inland parts of China increased the risk factors that they faced far beyond their counterparts who remained in the Treaty Ports. It was not until 1898 that the first member of the Mission met with violent death—William Fleming from Australia who joined the CIM in 1895. This paper made use of British, Australian, and Chinese sources in order to bring the historical incident into a more comprehensive light.

Sylvia Yuan is a researcher and mobiliser with OMF New Zealand. Her PhD research has focused on Kiwi missionaries in China and the CIM/OMF transition from China to East Asia. She has run a history column in ChurchChina since 2011. This article is an abridged version of the Chinese article that was published in ChurchChina in December 2019, https://www.churchchina.org/archives/191211.html.

William Fleming—“Gospel Shark”: The First CIM Missionary Martyr

Mission Round Table Vol. 15 No. 1 (Jan-Apr 2020):  20-25


Throughout the history of the church in China, missionaries, as symbols of the Western world, frequently suffered as scapegoats as a result of different powers pursuing competing agendas. What was true for others was true for Hudson Taylor who, from the time he landed in Shanghai on 1 March 1854, had to face both natural disasters and perils at the hands of man. From the beginning, danger was one of the key motifs found in the records of missionaries of the China Inland Mission. The frequent itinerant evangelistic trips taken by Taylor and his colleagues to the inland parts of China, where they ate and slept among grassroots people in remote and backward places, increased the risk factors they faced far beyond their counterparts who remained in the Treaty Ports. Even so, from the sailing of the Lammermuir party the mission had experienced no deaths from violence and it could truly be said that “the losses from the ordinary causes have been considerably below the usual average.”[1] It was not until 1898 that the first member of the Mission met with violent death. Few studies of CIM’s first martyr have been made. In part, this is because it was soon overshadowed by the tragedy of the Boxer Rebellion of 1900, and in part, it is because most mission historians relied on the British edition of China’s Millions which contained only a sketchy record of this Australian member. In order to bring this historical incident into a more comprehensive light, this study has made use of British, Australian, and Chinese sources.[2]

William S. Fleming (明鑒光)— “Gospel Shark”[3]

William Small Fleming was born on 25 September 1867, a native of Broughty Ferry, Scotland. At the age of 17, he started working as a sailor. About five or six years later, he settled in Australia. According to the “In Memoriam” notice of Our Herald (YMCA’s organ), Willie became a “spiritual son” of the Adelaide YMCA through attending the Theatre Royal services. Though with limited education in his early days, he pursued “both mental and spiritual knowledge” through “private devotion and public fellowship.” His years on sea and land gave him valuable experience in relating to his peers. Later, he and his Christian friends started Sunday open-air services amongst the workers of Happy Valley Waterworks, a work that bore some “splendid” fruit. Over the years he developed “a power of speech which, if simple and rugged, was always forcible and impressive.” Once he felt the call to foreign missions, he threw himself “heart and soul” into the City Mission’s outreach to the Chinese.[4]

About a year after completing his seafaring career, Fleming became one of the first five students in the Rev. W. L. Morton’s Training Home, Belair Lodge. After persevering through the three years course with good progress, he was accepted by the Australasian Council of the CIM on 10 October 1894. Setting sail from Sydney on 10 January 1895 aboard the Catterthun, Fleming reported that he was “cheerfully working his own passage” to China. About forty days later he arrived in Shanghai where he was given a new name—明鑒光 (Ming Jian Guang)—and began to learn the challenging new language.

William S. Fleming. China’s Millions, British ed. (January 1899): 6.

Fleming worked briefly at the West Gate of Gan-king (安慶) before being assigned to Tuh-shan (獨山) in Kwei-chau (貴州). At the end of 1896, he wrote to friends at home reporting on his first book-selling journey. On returning to Tuh-shan after spending four weeks on the road, they found their Chinese friends mourning for them because a report had been circulated that they and their coolies had been thrown in the river.[5] Though it was only a rumour, it proved strangely prophetic as Fleming and his Miao helper were to be killed beside a river two years later.

On 6 September 1898, Fleming left the capital city of the province, Kwei-yang (貴陽), for a preaching itineracy. On his way, he met H. E. Bolton’s (卜庸德)’s servant and learnt that Mr. Bolton was unwell at Pang-hai (旁海). Fleming went immediately and found Bolton so weak that he advised his coming to the capital city at once. The Mission’s doctor ordered Bolton to take a couple of months’ absolute rest. Thomas Windsor (文藻), the CIM missionary in charge in Kwei-yang, wrote to tell Fleming to lock up the mission station at Pang-hai as he was much needed back in the capital city.[6]

Pang-hai was a small market town about five days’ journey by foot from the capital city, divided by a river that separates the Chinese who live on one side from the Miao who live on the other. At the time, work among the Miao had only just begun.

While he was there, Fleming wrote one of his last letters to a friend in Adelaide.

27th Sep – In looking up the date just now I was reminded that my birthday was on Sunday, and this is Tuesday. Does your birthday ever pass without your knowing it? Alas, alas! I am growing old: Thirty-one last Sunday. During the past week I hoped to do some study, but one thing after another has come in, and I have not been able to open a book. I was a fortnight on the road before I came on here. I travelled by what is called the horse-road. As a rule no travellers go that way, as the road is so hilly, and there is another track running parallel … about 30 miles off. The scenery was charming, just like bonnie Scotland. I found that Romanism is well to the front along that road. Many of the people took me for a priest, but when they knew I was not their manner towards me changed very considerably for the better.

I trust you are enjoying much of the Lord’s goodness in all your work for Him. “Go, labour on, spend and be spent,” there is joy in doing the Father’s will. I hope you are having souls for your hire. Get a hunger for souls. A man once called me a “gospel shark,” because I talked to him respecting his soul. It would be a grand thing for the Church of God if all its members were “gospel sharks”! O Lord our God, lay upon thy servants the burden of souls.[7]

The first Miao Christian: Pan Shou-Shan (潘壽山)[8]

Pan Shou-Shan, a Black Miao (黑苗),[9] was a mason by trade. Around 1880, he and his wife moved to Kwei-Yang where they heard the gospel at the CIM station, responded to it, and were baptised by James Broumton (巴子成). Fifteen years later, Samuel R. Clarke (陳– –) engaged Pan as teacher when commencing work among Miao tribes. Together they compiled a primer and dictionary as a learning tool for the Black Miao language. Although Miao people had no written language, they had many legends in verse, which Pan had learned as a boy. He thus recited them to Clarke so that they could be recorded.

Pan Shou-Shan. China’s Millions, British ed. (August 1899): 121.

In August 1896, another CIM couple, Fred and Ellen Webb (洪– –), planned to set up a mission station among the Black Miao. They managed to rent a half of a house at the Miao settlements near the Pang-hai market, which only had three walls. Though the Han Chinese objected to the Webbs’ presence and tried to persuade them to leave, they stayed on. For his part in helping the foreigners settle in the Miao village, Pan was “cordially hated” by the Chinese. In the following year, the Webbs were compelled to leave due to ill-health. At that point, Bolton took charge of the Station and started a school to teach Miao boys to learn both Chinese and Miao languages. Another Miao—Pan Si-yin (潘思印)—who had accepted the gospel became the headmaster of the school. The work of both Teacher Pan and Evangelist Pan are recorded in one of Bolton’s letters.

The people come in on Sundays for the preaching, evidently liking to hear Mr. P’an speak in Miao … In the evening Mr. P’an spoke from Matt. vii., using Dr. Wilson’s pictures of the ‘broad and narrow ways.’ The room was crowded, and the people listened to Mr. P’an speaking in Miao, with rapt attention.

During the last four days we have had a festival in the village. From early morning till 10.30 or 11 p.m. the chapel has been filled, and preaching has gone on all day. The evening service is a sight to behold; the place packed inside, and as many people outside. Both Mr. P’an and the teacher have preached splendidly, taking the meeting in turns. Every Sunday we have a room packed with men and children; it is wonderful how well they behave; these people are certainly nice to live among in many ways.[10]

When Fleming arrived at Pang-hai in October 1898, Evangelist Pan remained a faithful associate. When the two of them went on a sixteen-day journey, they found that the countryside was in a very unsettled state due to robbers pillaging multiple villages. When they returned, the villages had been burned down and the villagers had all fled—the Chinese to walled cities and the Miao to the mountains. Even Mrs. Pan returned to her family home, taking her two children with her.

The murder scene[11]

In late October, the local county magistrate Liu (劉) arrived at Pang-hai to inspect the aftermath of the pillaging and left quietly. Several days later, a military official came to Pang-hai and a few of his soldiers damaged the properties at the mission house. One official knocked on the door, demanding that he be admitted to search for firearms. Initially, Fleming turned down the request, but eventually let them in after taking Evangelist Pan’s advice. He tried to pay a visit to the military general according to the Chinese etiquette but was rudely turned down.

After prayer and discussion, Fleming decided to return to the capital city on 4 November with the two Miao teachers. About ten miles from Pang-hai, they stopped for lunch at Tsung-ngan-chiang (重安江),[12] a market town where the main roads meet. After resting for an hour, they boarded a big ferry boat and crossed the river, continuing their journey in the following order: (1) Fleming on a mule, (2) a coolie carrying their load, (3) Teacher Pan, and (4) Evangelist Pan. After about a quarter of a mile’s journey, they were overtaken by four men, who had followed them all the morning. One of them, who carried a cavalry sword, attacked the Evangelist, “despatching him quickly.” When he saw the Evangelist fall, Fleming got off his mule and exclaimed, “This is not right.” In response, the assassin slashed him across the shoulder. As Teacher Pan, who later recounted the story, started to run for his life, the last thing he saw was Fleming attempting to grasp the sword which had struck him. Pan then fled up a nearby hill, with two men in pursuit. Crawling through heavy undergrowth, he eventually was able to get to the village where Evangelist Pan’s wife lived and informed her of what had happened. Leaving the village, it took him seven days to return to the provincial capital via a circuitous route of small trails and ditches. As the surviving witness, his recounting of the details of Fleming’s last days refuted attempts by the Chinese mandarins to explain things away. In the end it could be said that “The affair seems to have been a deliberately planned cold-blooded murder, connived at by the officials.”[13]

The witness of the burier

When the news reached Kwei-yang, another Scotsman, James R. Adam (黨居仁), who happened to be visiting the city, travelled to Tsung-ngan-chiang with an official delegation in order to investigate the case. The results of Adam’s findings painted an even more cold-blooded and hair-raising picture than the one given by Teacher Pan.[14]

From the time the village at Pang-hai was pillaged, the people of Tsung-ngan-chiang resolved to kill the foreigner. On 2 November, about thirteen people went to Pang-hai intending to take Fleming’s life but were stopped by the military official stationed there so they returned home to wait. By the time Fleming set foot in Tsung-ngan-chiang he was already reckoned “a doomed man”. No one in the town would sell rice to his party and the best they could do was to buy some thin noodles. While Fleming was eating, his future murderer, Hsü Wu-chin (許五斤), “was coolly sharpening the knife,” which was given by a militia leader who feared that Hsü’s wooden club was not strong enough to kill. At the time, the presence of the knife did not raise instant alarms as it was customary for travellers to carry knives in this region.

All of the townspeople knew what was going to happen. Some twenty of them crossed the river in the same boat as Fleming, all of whom were ready to give a hand in murdering him if needed. Some two hundred people witnessed the murder from the town side of the river. Even if any of the crowd had given Fleming a hint of the danger ahead, there might have been little chance of escape. During the protracted struggle the people ran along the riverside to obtain a full view of what was taking place on the opposite side as if it was a play. In this sense the whole village was witness to the crime and, to a great extent, culpable.

Fleming was said to be “a fine specimen of manhood”, or “as strong as a horse” according to the doctor who examined him in Adelaide. The Chinese were often struck with his physique so that some of them used to ask him whether he could lift a horse. His strength allowed Fleming to hold Hsü firmly in his embrace during the fearful struggle, until Hsü pulled out a little knife which was hidden in his leggings and struck Fleming with it. A little later, Fleming got Hsü down on the ground and sat upon him when another man (T’ien Hsiong-t’ing, 田香亭) jumped in and wounded him in the abdomen with an iron spike. Fleming fell over and was brutally killed. Both his and the clothes of the Evangelist were taken and the bodies left on the public road for three days, and were only put into cheap coffins just before the arrival of the investigating delegation. The first thing that Adam did after he came on the scene was to ask that the bodies be put into proper coffins. Knowing well that the Chinese despised the Miao, Adam made a point to the officials that Evangelist Pan’s coffin must also be exchanged for a good one.

Adam “found the people in Pang-hai, Chinese and Miao, on both sides of the river, very friendly, all expressing great sorrow at what had happened.”[15] They seemed pleased to hear that the Station would be retained and repented of having anything to do with the murder of Pan and Fleming. When he asked the crowd why they had killed Fleming, no one dared to answer. He told them that if they killed one, ten would come in his place; if they killed ten, a hundred would take their place. Some said, “They were all saying that the foreigner was importing arms and ammunition among the Miao, but when they searched his luggage, and ransacked his house, they found no arms, nothing but good books; he was certainly a good man and it was a mistake to kill him.”[16]

At some point, Adam visited Mrs. Pan who was living in her mother’s home, far up in the mountains. Understandably, she was shaken by the event, and was afraid that the murderers would find and kill the remaining members of the family. Even so, she was brave enough to say “It is God’s will; so must be well.”[17]

In February 1899, Adam returned to Pang-hai. The remains of Fleming and Pan were buried on 22 February in a plot provided by the Chinese official. Dozens of Miao inquirers who attended the occasion lent their hands to help Adam. Over the next few days, he travelled to many Miao villages where he always received a warm welcome. He bought a piece of land for the building of a mission house and left Teacher Pan—who was now the only baptized Miao in those parts—in charge of the work.

A group of Black Miao at Pang-hai. China’s Millions, British ed. (February 1907): 28.

Seeking justice?

Though not requested by the CIM, Mr. Litten, the British Consul, went from Chong-king (重慶) to Kwei-yang in January 1899 to convince the provincial governors that the culprits must be brought to justice. As this was an international affair, the outcome of the case was entirely out of the hands of mission leadership. In the end, Hsü and T’ien were executed, several civil and military officials were degraded in rank, members of the gentry were deprived of their degrees, and a lump sum was offered as an indemnity claim. Hudson Taylor wrote to CIM’s General Secretary, Walter B. Sloan, in London, asking his help to decline this financial consolation.

We hear that the Consul here had kindly thought to help Mr. Fleming’s parents by claiming for them £2,500 … (Could you) use your influence with them not to accept this money as … the effect on the Chinese will be bad; in the Kucheng massacres the CMS refused all blood-money. To the Chinese it will seem as if the parents were quite satisfied to sell their son. It is a pity to encourage the idea that the lives of missionaries can be paid for.[18]

The same response would come forth from CIM leadership after the death of many missionaries and their family members at the hands of the Boxers in the following year. Indemnities cannot pay for the life of one who has laid down his life in the same way their Lord laid his down.

Colleagues’ recollections

Fleming’s tragic death was a big blow to the small missionary community in Kwei-yang. According to Windsor, although Fleming had only lived with them just over a year, they had much “happy profitable fellowship”.[19] They looked eagerly for his return whenever he went traveling, and were delighted to hear him say upon his return, “It is so nice to be at home again,” and “It is such a treat to see those children.” The colleagues admired him “both as a man and a Christian.”[20] Windsor went on to write:

He lived near his Master, and made it his business to serve Him. In one thing he was conspicuously like his Master, viz., in his unselfish disposition. He was happy working for others, and it was his greatest joy to give others pleasure. He had the heart and enthusiasm of a true missionary, and loved to be at work.…

We believe our brother’s death will mean the opening of the door of Life to these poor ‘Miao’ people. It is the wrenching away of the last bolt from the door which is shutting them out from hearing of Christ the Saviour. As one brother remarked: ‘Perhaps he did more missionary work in the last few seconds of his life than all the years before.’” [21]

H. E. Bolton, who had been relieved by Fleming at Pang-hai, revealed his survivor’s guilt when he wrote:

The murderers were not seeking for our brother, but for me. The Lord hid me in Kwei-yang sick, and so I am allowed to serve Him yet a little longer; but He honoured our beloved brother, and allowed him to be killed. His large heart, merry laugh, and willingness to be spent for others, won for him the affection and love of many.… his itineration map … will give you an idea of the amount of work which our beloved fellow-worker was permitted to do in the short three-and-half year of labour …[22]

The Chong-king correspondent of The North China Daily News wrote:

Murders of foreigners by frenzied mobs we are, if I may say so, used to; but it is something new to us to hear of such a cold-blooded and successful attempt as this… Mr. Fleming could have saved himself, but he courageously went to the rescue of the evangelist, thereby meeting his death. Such heroism is deserving of the highest honour. Surely with such men in the Mission field the day cannot be far off when China will be persuaded to put off the old and put on the new.[23]

In June 1899, when the Secretary of the CIM Australasian Council, C. F. Whitridge, mentioned Fleming’s martyrdom at the Melbourne Annual Meeting, his remarks, despite the sorrow, were full of hope that the falling of this seed into the ground would result in a great harvest.

But just as really as, when Stephen was being stoned to death, our Lord Jesus Christ was there—the most interested spectator—waiting to receive the spirit of His first martyr, so was He present at Panghai to receive the spirit of the first C.I.M. martyr. For Mr. Fleming, so blessedly ready for the translation and yearning to see the face of the King, there can be no sorrow.… The Lord never sells the lives of His servants too cheaply. Cannot we expect that, as the result of these lives laid down, there shall spring forth an abundant harvest to the glory of God?[24]

What happened to the Miao people?[25]

Several of Fleming’s colleagues and the Australian Secretary to CIM expressed their expectation that Fleming’s martyrdom would result in fruit. Were their hopes fulfilled? From the perspective of 120 years of church history, our response is at best an ambivalent yes and no.

Let’s look at the “no” part first. After the martyrdom of Fleming and Pan, the Black Miao showed great interest in the gospel. While many visited the Pang-hai station as inquirers, the mission struggled to send workers there. This was partially because the Boxer Rebellion (1900) made it necessary for foreign missionaries to pull out of the interior of China. In the year that rebellion began, Miao Christians and inquirers in the vicinity of Pang-hai were persecuted after being proclaimed guilty of committing another round of robbery and pillaging in a neighbouring town, Kai-li (凱里). In the aftermath of this attack, about thirty people were beheaded and several hundreds were fined and forced to recant. It was the Chinese officials’ method of suppressing both Miao people and Christianity.

As in the time when Fleming was murdered, Teacher Pan was the one who bore witness of the injustice and asked Adam and Clarke to investigate the case. And even though the Provincial Governor was eventually convinced that the Chinese magistrates and Miao headmen were responsible for a miscarriage of justice, it was quite impossible to overturn their pronouncements.

Reoccurring martyrdom and persecution caused the infant church among the Black Miao much fear. Fourteen years later, another Australian missionary couple, Maurice and Stella Hutton (胡致中), described the apathetic or even hostile reception they received at a Black Miao village: “Some of the men began to curse my men for leading us to their village. They did not want the foreigner nor his gospel, for some years earlier, they said, all those who had anything to do with the Gospel Hall were killed.”[26] After another twenty-three years had passed, the Huttons could still observe the fear. “To this day many are afraid to have anything to do with the gospel for fear of the threats which officials still make of repeating this same treatment of Christians.”[27]

Half of a century later, at the beginning of the “New China”, there were only about a hundred  baptized converts among the 500,000 Black Miao (0.02 percent).[28] Seventy years later, there are about 7,000 believers among 3,000,000 Black Miao (less than 0.5 percent).[29] The Black Miao are clearly a people in great need of the gospel and there are, at present, few Christian workers committed to their spiritual wellbeing.

Let us now look at the “Yes” side of the equation. Adam, the Scotsman who buried Fleming and Pan in 1898 and made a further investigation of the grievance in Kai-Li in 1901, had a very successful ministry among a different Miao tribe—the Big Flowery Miao (大花苗)—in the nearby Prefecture of An-shun (安順). When Adam was translating the Bible into the Miao language, some local Miao villagers thought that he was the “Miao King” spoken of in a legend that said he would bring back the Miao language. As his work developed, many Miao people came to the Lord. Altogether, Adam had baptised 6,449 Miao converts and there were 5,590 Miao communicants at the time of his death.[30] Even the Miao in the neighbouring Province of Yunnan (雲南) came to inquire about the gospel of Jesus. To save them from travelling such a long distance, Adam wrote to Samuel Pollard (柏格理) of the United Methodist Church Mission, to introduce these Miao people to him. That was the beginning of the great ministry at Stone-Gate (石門坎, Shimenkan) of east Yunnan.[31]

A group of Flowery Miao believers at Anshunfu. Mrs. Adam is in the front row. China’s Millions, British ed. (December 1912): 184.

In the year 1915, Windsor, Adam, and Pollard rested from their work within a period of two months. Clarke died the following year. Despite the heavy loss of these experienced workers, Miao churches continued to grow in both Yunnan and Guizhou provinces. About one century later, as much as 80 percent of the 400,000 Big Flowery Miao are Christian.[32] In comparison to the growth of the church among the Big Flowery Miao, the lack of growth among the Black Miao church around Pang-hai is even more heart-wrenching.

Hindsight and reflection

Fleming was the first CIM martyr. A reoccurring theme in accounts of his death is of the “thankful testimony” to his life lived for God and of the “the good hand of God upon us” that is known in spite of one man’s death.[33] Throughout the thirty-three years up until that dreadful winter afternoon in November 1898, “there has not been a moment, day or night, when some members of the Mission have not been travelling by land, or river, or ocean; and that from the commencement of the work we have always been at the mercy of evil men, urged on by the devil, except as God has restrained them from bloodshed”.[34]

Secretary Whitridge of the Australasian Council made a particular reference to the safety of single woman workers in the 1899 Annual Meeting: “Those who express themselves so strongly in opposition to women being sent to China, because of the perils to which they are exposed, should specially note how God has kept our sisters from all harm.”[35] Little did anyone know that eighteen months later, fifty-eight CIM workers and twenty-one of their children would suffer violent death during the Boxer Rebellion.

The traditional and primary focus of CIM work had been among the Han Chinese—the ethnic majority in China. As the work unfolded and the mission coverage expanded, missionaries came into contact with various ethnic minorities. Due to limited resources, permission to work among minority people often followed the persistent pleading of individual missionaries to mission leadership (such as in the cases of J. O. Fraser and J. R. Adam). Over the last 120 years, church growth in China has primarily occurred among the Han Chinese. Maybe, instead of encountering minority groups in a random manner, deliberate attempts should be made to allocate resources so that different ethnic groups can be reached. Han Chinese Christians can similarly be encouraged to reach out to their minority neighbours.

The fate of the Black Miao after the murder of Fleming and the blessing of the Big Flowery Miao who saw Adam as the king from their legends, is like a missionary version of the movie “Sliding Doors”. One cannot help asking “What if?” What if Fleming escaped from the murder attempt and became the resident missionary at Pang-hai? What if early Black Miao believers had been sheltered from further persecution and had more space and time to grow in their faith? No one has the answer. But what we do know is that the CIM never abandoned its Pang-hai mission house and continued assigning workers there to labour among the Black Miao despite hostile reactions from them and from the Han. It is also reasonable to conjecture that the investigation and burning experience that Adam had to go through, would have been imprinted on his missional heart, inspiring and driving him to work diligently among the Miao in An-shun. And how can we be inspired and encouraged today through our discovery of Fleming’s heritage? One could do no better than joining him as a twenty-first century “gospel shark” who was willing to “spend and be spent” for the cause of Christ.

Read the chapter “Reminiscenes of  the Mr. P’an” and other chapters on the Miao people in the book Kwiechow and Yun-nan Provinces, a book by George W. Clarke published in 1894. George Clarke was one of the missionaries of the China Inland Mission who pioneered work in Guizhou and Yunnan.

Browse online copy of “Kwiechow and Yun-nan Provinces”


George and Fanny Clarke were the first missionaries in Yunnan. George persevered in pioneering work despite adversity and sorrow. How did he stay the course in circumstances that would have caused others to give up?

Read about the pioneering work of George Clarke in Guizhou and Yunnan

[1] At the end of the first decade of CIM’s history (1866–76), thirty-two out of thirty-nine workers served for more than four years and twenty-five were still serving with CIM in 1876. By comparison, the CMS’s 1874 records show that only fifteen of thirty-four ordained clergymen stayed for more than four years on the field and only eleven of these fifteen remained in China in 1874. Likewise, only seven out of the twenty-one American Baptist missionaries remained on the field for thirty or more years. “Review of the Past Ten Years of the Mission,” China’s Millions, British ed. (July 1876): 158, https://archive.org/details/chinasmillions7576chin (accessed 4 March 2020).

[2] The key Chinese reference consulted in this article is the correspondence between various Chinese officials collected in Mission-related Cases in the Late Qing Dynasty (《清末教案》), Vol. 2 (Beijing: Zhong Hua Shu Ju [北京: 中华书局], 1998), 795–826.

[3] Compiled from: Phillip Edgar Brotchie, “The Importance of the Contribution of Australians to the Penetration of China by the China Inland Mission in the Period 1888–1953, with Particular Reference to the Work of Australian Women Missionaries” (PhD thesis, Deakin University, 1999), Appendix IV: Biographies of Australian CIM Missionaries who Served in China, No. 199 – William (Willie) Small Fleming; “The First C.I.M. Martyr,” China’s Millions, Australasian ed. (January 1899): 2.

[4] “The First C.I.M. Martyr,” 2.

[5] “Extracts from Missionaries’ Letters,” China’s Millions, Australasian ed. (January 1897).

[6] Windsor’s letter dated 28 September 1898, in “The First C.I.M. Martyr,” 2–3.

[7] “The Murder of Mr. W. S. Fleming,” China’s Millions, Australasian ed. (February 1899): 1–3.

[8] See S. R. Clarke, “P’an, the Evangelist,” China’s Millions, British ed. (July 1899): 121, http://findit.library.yale.edu/catalog/digcoll:217687 (accessed 4 March 2020). Pan’s name has been Romanized in several different forms: P’an-ta-ie (“Particulars of Mr. Fleming’s Death,” China’s Millions, British ed. [February 1899]: 22); P’an-Ta-yeh (“The Murder of Mr. W. S. Fleming,” China’s Millions, Australasian ed. [March 1899], 1–2); P’an-sheo-shan (Samuel R. Clarke, Among the Tribes in South-West China [London: CIM, 1911], 157, https://archive.org/details/amongtribesinsou00clarrich). According to Mission-related Cases in the Late Qing Dynasty (《清末教案》),” his Chinese name was潘壽山. He was also known as潘老喬.

[9] The Black Miao are also known as Heh Miao. The classification of different Miao tribes is often based on their women’s dress features. The women of this particular tribe wear dark navy clothes.

[10] Clarke, “P’an, the Evangelist,” 121.

[11] “Particulars of Mr. Fleming’s Death,” 22; “The Murder of Mr. W. S. Fleming” (February 1899): 1–3.

[12] Also called Ch’ung-ngan-chiang.

[13] “The Murder of Mr. W. S. Fleming” (March 1899): 2.

[14] “The Murder of Mr. W. S. Fleming” (March 1899): 1–2; Clarke, Among the Tribes in South-West China, 155–60.

[15] “The Murder of Mr. W. S. Fleming” (March 1899): 1.

[16] Clarke, Among the Tribes in South-West China, 159.

[17] “The Murder of Mr. W. S. Fleming” (March 1899): 2.

[18] Hudson Taylor’s letter to W. B. Sloan, cited in A. J. Broomhall, It is not Death to Die!, Hudson Taylor and China’s Open Century (Sevenoaks: Hodder & Stoughton and OMF, 1989), 287.

[19] “The Murder of Mr. W. S. Fleming” (February 1899): 2.

[20] “The Murder of Mr. W. S. Fleming” (February 1899): 2.

[21] “The Murder of Mr. W. S. Fleming” (February 1899): 1–3.

[22] “The Murder of Mr. W. S. Fleming” (February 1899): 2.

[23] “The Murder of Mr. W. S. Fleming” (February 1899): 2.

[24] “The Secretary’s Report of the Annual Meeting,” China’s Millions, Australasian ed. (July 1899): 2.

[25] J. R. Adam, “Persecution of the Black Miao in Kwei-chau,” China’s Millions, British ed. (January 1902): 11, http://findit.library.yale.edu/catalog/digcoll:218313 (accessed 4 March 2020); Clarke, Among the Tribes in South-West China, 161–71.

[26] M. H. Hutton, “In Journeyings’ among the Miao,” China’s Millions, Australasian ed. (June 1914): 47–8.

[27] M. H. Hutton, “How the Message Came to the Black Miao,” British ed. (November 1937): 214.

[28] Ivan Allbutt, “The Black Miao of Kweichow,” China’s Millions, British ed. (October 1950): 106.

[29] Paul Hattaway, Guizhou: The Precious Province, The China Chronicles, Vol. 2 (Manchester: Asia Harvest / SPCK, 2018), 60, 236 (Table: People groups in Guizhou).

[30] John Stevenson, “In Memoriam: J. R. Adam and Thomas Windsor,” China’s Millions, British ed. (October 1915), 160, http://findit.library.yale.edu/catalog/digcoll:220325 (accessed 4 March 2020).

[31] See Sam Pollard, Henry Smith, and F. J. Dymond, The Story of the Miao (London: Henry Hooks, 1919).

[32] Adam worked among both Flowery Miao and Hmong Shua. Around 2 percent of the Hmong Shua are Christian. Hattaway, Guizhou, 94 and 236 (Table: People groups in Guizhou).

[33] “In Memoriam—William Small Fleming,” China’s Millions, British ed. (January 1899): 6; “The Secretary’s Report of the Annual Meeting,” 2.

[34] “In Memoriam—William Small Fleming,” 6.

[35] “The Secretary’s Report of the Annual Meeting,” 2.

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