The Peabody Essex Museum (PEM) is home to the largest and the most important American museum collection of nineteenth-century photographs of China. A rare treasure is a captioned panoramic view of the Shanghai Bund taken by the local photo studio Kung Tai in 1882. Consisting of 13 albumen prints mounted on boards and 81 handwritten notes, this is the longest panorama of the 19th- century Shanghai. It vividly captures the bustling and fast-changing international port city at a critical moment in China's modern history. The underdeveloped area in the foreground - called Pudong - is home to Shanghai Tower, the tallest building to be unveiled this year in China.
Kung Tai Studio. Photographic panorama of the Shanghai Bund. Shanghai, China, 1882. Albumen prints. Gift of Mrs. Beverley R. Robinson, 1950. Peabody Essex Museum, Salem, MA. Image credit: Walter Silver.
Read the PEM Press Release
Download the 13 Shanghai Bund images