The Former Residence of Song Qingling in Beijing
Song Qingling (Ching-ling Soong) was the wife of Dr. Sun Yat-sen, who was the founding father of the Republic of China. One of the three famed Song sisters, she studied in America and married Sun in 1915, when she was 22-years old and Sun was 49. After Sun's death in 1925, Song Qingling took a pro-Communist stance in Chinese politics, alienating her brother-in-law, Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek, who, as the head of the Republic of China, fought the Communist rebels. After the Communist victory in 1949, Song served as the Vice President of the People's Republic of China, Vice Chairman of the PRC National People's Congress, and, shortly before her death in 1981, the Honorary President of the PRC.
Song Qingling's residence in Beijing is located on the northern bank of Houhai Lake. The place used to be a garden of a Manchu prince. The Chinese government rebuilt the place for Song, where she lived from 1963 to 1981. The compound is now a museum in honor of Song, open to the public.
The characters on the plaque above the entrace shown in the picture here read: "The Residence of Comrade Song Qingling, the Honorary President of the People's Republic of China."