Chee Hsin Cement 启新洋灰

Chee Hsin (Qixin in pinyin; 中文版) was initially founded by Tang Jingxing in 1889 in Tangshan, an industrial city one hundred miles west of Beijing. It folded four years later due to costly materials, corruption, and mismanagement.
In the spring of 1900, Zhou Xuexi, the general manager at the Kaiping Mines, tried to revive the company. However, the Boxer Uprising swept through Northern China, and the revolt decimated the Kaiping Mines. Herbert Clark Hoover, future U.S. President, was the mine’s chief engineer. He would later be involved in the selling of the mines, and subsequently get sued for it.

Both books are sold on Amazon.

In 1906, Zhou, China’s first Captain of Industry, saw the opportunity in producing and selling mortar while founding Luanzhou Mining Co. But the Europeans tried to grab the defunct cement plant from him. After a hard-fought victory, he finally got the cement company off the ground. He named it Qixin (Chee Hsin), which translates to ‘Start Anew’.
Zhou Xuexi was often credited as the father of northern Chinese industry. and Qixin was the cornerstone of his empire (a list of his ventures). For more info, please check out my book, Chee Hsin 130 Years, which is sold on Amazon.

Chee Hsin (Qixin) Pottery and its tiles.

For more photos, see my trip to Qixin Museum in 2019.


Before the Second Sino-Japanese War (1937-1945), eight cement companies in China followed 1:

Year Name Location Capitala Outputb Equip. ®
1889 Chee Hsin Tangshan, Hebei 14,000 350,000 Smidth Horse
1909 Huaxin Daye, Hubei 60,000 Polysius Pagoda
1920 Shanghai Longhua, Shanghai 2,500 100,000 Polysius Elephant
1921 China Longtan, Jiangsu 5,400 275,000 Humboldt Taishan
1932 Xicun Guangzhou 8,000 180,000 Polysius Sheep
1934 Xibei Taiyuan, Shanxi 45,000 Japan Lion
1935 Jiangnan Nanjing 8,000 220,000 Smidth – c
1936 Sichuang Chongqing 2,000 45,000 Smidth River
Zhijing Ji’nan, Shandong 30,000 Krupps c

1 Cement Industry 水泥工业 Dec 1947.
a Yuan 国币元 in ‘000.
b max. annual output in metric ton
never shipped 从未出货.

A few medals of Chee Hsin:

  • A bronze medal from the 1904 Louisiana Purchase Expo, also known as the St. Louis World’s Fair. 1904年美国圣路易斯赛会铜质奖章
  • A gold medal from the Panama-Pacific International Expo held in San Francisco in 1915. The award • 奖状. 1915年旧金山举行的巴拿马赛会头等奖.
  • A special award of Tianjin Domestic Products Fair in 1929. 1929年天津特别市国货展览会特等奖章.



QX cement tiles #108 and #158

Chee Hsin Pottery‘s QX #108 or #158 cement tiles are seen on a front porch in the popular TV series I’ll Find You a Better Home. The leading man Luo Jin (light shirt) and the leading lady, his fellow realtor played by Sun Li, are showing an old Shanghai villa to a perspective buyer. The TV show premiered in the spring of 2020, while the coronavirus ravaged China and the rest of the world.
The actors are exiting the foyer which is also paved with QX #108 tiles, as is the balcony above the front porch.

⇐ ⇓ Photo courtesy of Shehouse • 照片来源昔舍. 

The villa was built in 1912 for a Citibank director. His grandson mentioned that it was purchased with 300 gold bars. 福布斯生活 He sold it to an architect in 2015, who spent two years painstakingly renovating the house. It’s now a B&B.

安家》是由安建执导,孙俪,罗晋. 照片许可来源于昔舍. 这座750平方米的洋房坐落在愚园路 532弄.为一花旗银行董事建于1912年.现在是一个民宿.

L to R: front porch, second floor balcony above the front porch and the foyer.   

The colors of tile were made to order. They measured 77/8 square, 1″ in depth and weighted 3.85 pound:

No. 108 & No. 158, central tiles 心砖
No. 111 & No. 161, border tiles 边砖
No. 112 & No. 162, corner tiles 角砖

More photos of this set of tiles:

This photo was taken by Hu Ping on May 11, 2020 at the same B&B. It was at the edge of the four steps leading into the front porch, according to him.

It’s interesting to note that this portion retained the old border while the tiles in the foyer did not.

The clinker tiles: #1071 & #1074

Gifts from Mr. Huang 

These Qixin ceramic tiles were also named clinker in their Sample Book. The measurement of #1071 (hexagon) was 53/4 in厂 height and width, and of #1704 on the right was 53/4 by 53/4 inch.

这些启新瓷砖也叫缸砖. 六角砖 #1071 和 方砖#1704 都是 53/4 英寸.

Qixin Museum, Tangshan, 2019

The power plant was equipped by AEG and Siemens, with their own square and hexagon ceramic tiles.

该发电车间(电厂二层的)设备由AEG和西门子公司提供. 地上方形和六边形陶瓷瓷砖是原品.