This film is part of Free

A Visit to Hunan

This engaging film documents the journey of a doctor sent by the Methodist Missionary Society across land and sea to rural Hunan Province.

Travelogue 1946 50 mins Silent


A British doctor travels with his family across land and sea to work in rural Hunan Province. The scenes of his idyllic passage by luxury liner make a stark contrast to the basic conditions at his destination, where he records some interesting observations on local customs. The film documents the work of the Methodist Missionary Society hospital to provide both physical care and spiritual succour.

The Methodist Missionary Society was active in China from the mid-1800s, recruiting doctors to work at hospitals in rural provinces, like Hunan, where medical care was rarely available. These foreign doctors were largely welcomed by the local people, enabling them to convert some members of the community to Christianity. The overriding contribution of Methodist missionaries was the establishment of hospitals and clinics which both provided medical treatment and trained local medical workers, as seen here.