12 November 1898|
Haining, Zhejiang, China
|Died||21 September 1990
|Nationality||Republic of China|
|Other names||Weitang (courtesy name)|
Jiang was born in a Catholic family in Haining, Zhejiang, China towards the end of the Qing dynasty. He was a maternal cousin of the wuxia novelist Louis Cha. He graduated from Peking University in 1923 with a degree in philosophy, and obtained a government scholarship to study library science at Berlin University and graduated in 1930.
In 1933, Jiang started the National Central Library in Nanjing and oversaw its move to Chongqing during the Second Sino-Japanese War. On 1 August 1940, he was appointed as its first director. Between 1940 and 1941, he organised funding for the purchase of rare manuscripts and books collection preservation from collectors in Shanghai to protect them from looting by the Japanese during the war. The library was moved back to Nanjing between 1945 and 1946 after the end of the war. In 1948, the Nationalist government moved the library, along with its core collection of about 130,000 volumes of rare manuscript books, to Taiwan following its defeat by the Communists in the Chinese Civil War. On 23 April 1949, when Communist forces occupied Nanjing towards the end of the Chinese Civil War, Jiang left mainland China and went to Hong Kong before eventually settling down in Taipei, Taiwan.
In 1951, Jiang became a professor in the National Taiwan University. About three years later, he was appointed as the director of the National Central Library again after the library was rebuilt in Taipei. In 1965, he became the director of the National Palace Museum in Taipei. A year later, he was reassigned to be the director of the National Central Library. In 1974, he was elected to Academia Sinica, the national academy of Taiwan. In 1983, he resigned from the National Palace Museum and was appointed national policy adviser to President Chiang Ching-kuo. He died on 21 September 1990 in Taipei.
- Mission of National Central Library: http://www.ncl.edu.tw/ct.asp?xItem=149&CtNode=232&mp=5
- NCL Special Collection: http://www.ncl.edu.tw/ct.asp?xItem=991&ctNode=553&mp=5
- Collection Highlights: http://www.ncl.edu.tw/lp.asp?ctNode=553&CtUnit=206&BaseDSD=7&mp=5