CHINESE LOCAL GAZETTEER COLLECTION AT THE ASIAN LIBRARY
Chinese local gazetteers (Fangzhi方志) contain a wealth of information about Chinese localities, including their geography, place names, administration, economy, culture, dialects, officials and local elites, and their publications. They are mostly compiled by members of the local elite and produced under the sponsorship of local officials. Much of the information in local gazetteers is hard to find in other sources.
There are two types of Chinese local gazetteers. Those published before 1949 are called traditional gazetteers (Jiuzhi舊志), while those published after 1949 are called new gazetteers (Xinzhi 新志). Both traditional and new gazetteers are subdivided by administrative level (national, provincial, prefectural, or county) or by subject matters, such as those on a particular family, mountain, river, lake, temple, or industry.
A typical traditional local gazetteer consists of information on topographical features, ancient monuments, official buildings and city walls, water conservancy, officials, examinations, population and households, land and taxes, markets and towns, local products, local customs, biographies, literature works by local people, and miscellaneous matters.
Each of the following gazetteers represents one of the gazetteer categories. They are on display at the Asian Library Reading Area.