Exchange Database

U.S. President Ulysses S. Grant meets with Li Hongzhang

Ulysses S. Grant traveled in Asia in 1879. Grant met with many members of the imperial court, but his most significant meeting was in Tianjin with Li Hongzhang, the powerful Viceroy of Zhili (roughly modern day Hebei province) who, after leading a coup a few years earlier, was among the most powerful statesmen in the Qing court and the de facto leader of its military.
Both men had commanded an army on the winning side of a brutal civil war: while Grant was fighting the Civil War, Li helped vanquish the Taiping Rebellion. That shared past inspired Li to believe he had found a kindred spirit: “You and I, General Grant, are the greatest men in the world,” he told his guest.
Contact Info: 
Type of Exchange: 
United States Government
Qing Court
Participants (Types): 
government officials
Exchange Date: 
Wednesday, January 1, 1879
Level of Government: 
Tianjin, China
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