The ancient name for Xinjiang was The Western Regions. Before the dawn of the Qin-Han Dynasties (221 B.C. -220 A.D.)the ancient Silk Road had already connected the interior of the Central Plains with Xinjiang and the Occident. At 60 A.D.,the Western Han Dynasty government established the Western Territory Duhufu and Xinjiang was officially included on the map of China. The governed area extended to north and south of the Tianshan Mountains and the Pamir Plateau, among other places.The Duhufu played an important role in protecting the traffic on the Silk Road. The imperial court sent officials to govern the various areas in the Western Regions and to carry out the system of garrisoning and cultivating the land. During the time of the Western and Eastern Dynasties, Loulan, Jiaohe, Yiwu,and Niya were places where the system was practiced, as archaeological finds have uncovered official seals of the departmentgarrison and cultivation affairs of that historical period.
During the times of the Wei-Jin Northern and Southern Dynasties (220 420A.D.),the Cao-Wei government established officials at Haitou (west of Lopnur)and Gaochang,was established which Vhad jurisdiction over areas north of the Tianshan Mountains. Qiuci, Yutien, Shule, and Suiye were the four famous townships of Anxi. The poet, Li Bai,was born in Suiye. The "Fang Dynasty appointed envoys to the famous four townships and also to the Yixi Belting government. The imperial court also sent troops to garrison the township of Suiye which had the name of Baoda, and those sent to Belting were Yiwu, Tianshan, Jinya, Yuhe,Hanhai, Jingsai, and those to the Pamir Plateau were Congling.
During the five dynasties of Song, Yuan, and Ming,atapproximately the 10th century, the paralleled local powers such as the Xizhou Huigu(Gaochang Huigu), the Yutian Kingdom, and the Karakhanate appeared. The Later Jin Dynasty conferred on Li Sheng Tian the title of king of tile Yutian Kingdom, and the Head of the Karakhanate claimed the title of Khan.
The two great works, 'Kutad Kubelig" by Yusuf Haas the Qing Dynasty through the Republic of China days and into the early days of the People's Republfc of China when it was made the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region in 1955,becoming one of China's provincial level ethnic autonomous regions.
Xinjiang has been a multi-ethnic region from days of old. On this vast and beautiful land there had appeared many ancient tribes and groups.On both sides of the Tianshan Mountains there had lived the Sai, the Yushi, the Xiongnu,the Wusun, the Dingling, the Jiang,the Han, the Loulan,the Cheshi,the Yanji, the Qiuci,the Shule,and the Yutien peoples.After them came the Xianbei, Rouran, Turkic, Tuguhun,Tupan,Jigas,Huigu,Chitan, Mongolian, and others. When the People's Republic of China was established,there were 13 groups of people living in Xinjiang. They were the Uygur, Han,Kazak, Kirgiz Mongolian,Tajik,Hui, Xibe, Man-churian, Tartar, Uzbek, Daur, and Russian. These peoples havelived on this land for generations and they are exactly the ones who have,with their diligence and undaunted determination, opened up the land and created all the riches and culture that we enjoy today.