Early Career and Personal Life
After returning to China in 1926, Wu began a career in government service, first as a tax collector in Hankow (today part of Wuhan) for Hsia Tou-yin, a local warlord. In 1931, he married Edith Huang, daughter of Gene T. Huang. They eventually had four children: Eileen Hsiu Young Yu, Edith Hsiu Hwei Li, H.K. Wu and Sherman Wu. In 1932, he became mayor of Hankow. When the Yangtze River appeared ready to flood in 1936, Wu oversaw the construction of a huge dike system which saved the city.
With the fall of Hankow to Japanese forces in October 1938 during the Second Sino-Japanese War, Wu and his family fled to Chungking. In 1939, Chiang Kai-Shek appointed him as mayor of Chungking, a position he held until 1942. He served as vice minister of Foreign Affairs from 1943-1945, interacting with Zhou Enlai as part of the united front against the Japanese. After the end of World War II, K.C. Wu became mayor of Shanghai in 1945, serving in that role until the Chinese Communists conquered the city in 1949. While mayor of Shanghai, Wu met the Chicago Tribune's Robert McCormick and his wife Maryland. As the situation in Shanghai became less stable, Wu sent his two daughters to live with the McCormicks in Illinois.
Read more about this topic: K. C. Wu
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