In 1897, Lucy Christina Murray left Canada, the land to which her Scottish ancestors had emigrated nearly a century earlier, to sail overseas with her new husband. Her husband, William Pollock Ker, was a British consular official in China and, in 1900, they were posted to Peking and found themselves besieged in the Legation Quarters during the Boxer Rebellion. They emerged to read their obituaries in The Times of London and to face many more challenging years in China. They witnessed, firsthand, the end of the Qing dynasty and the emergence of the Republic of China. Despite personal tragedies, they grew to love and admire the emerging country. As the wife of a consular official who spent over thirty years in Asia, Lucy's life was always challenging. On the domestic front, she had to be ready to pack up a household at very short notice and to adjust to arbitrary and frequent new postings. On the public front, she found each posting required new skills. One posting required her to act as hostess for Sir Ernest Satow in Peking. In Tientsin, she found herself organising the relief of the incoming White Russians. During her lifetime, she crossed paths with many historically interesting figures, both Chinese and European, including the last Emperor of China.
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