Location:Home > Tujia Customs > Origins

Qingshui Tujia Township is the only minority township in Yunyang County. Qingshui got the name as there are three ponds which are clear in all seasons. Qingshui Township is located on the Mountain Qiyao at the juncture of Chongqing and Hubei and in the most southern part of Yunyang County. It’s facing Meikui Township, Fengjie County in the east across the river, borders on Lichuan City, Hubei Province in the south, adjacent to Yaoling Township in the west and connects with Piaochao Town in the north. In Qingshui Township, mountains and rivers are magic and pretty with exquisite scenery. Qingshui is very pretty and charming as embraced by Qiyao mountain range. The Stalagmite River water moistens numeral miracles…

Here is magic and pretty scenery. Longgang Heavenly Pit, Dragon Cave, Daan Cave, Stalagmite River, Mountain Qi Prairie, Mountain Qiyao Prairie, Gaixiaba Lake, etc. are created by heaven and earth and present natural beautiful scenery. You may feel reluctant to leave.

Here is culture rich of primitive simplicity. Local Tujia Nationality lives original simple life and retains ancient folk customs and plentiful national culture like offering white tiger, living in stilted building, drinking oil-tea camellia, singing Tujia folk song, performing waving dance, etc., which embodies the simple folk custom “Natural Brave, Courageous, Like Dancing” of Tujia people.

Here, summer is cool and comfortable. At the elevation of 900-1,500m, there is magic and pretty heavenly pit, prairie, gorges, karst cave group and other natural sceneries, virgin forest, peony, pear, grape and ecological gallery. People can enjoy cool summer while appreciating beautiful sceneries.

Here is Qingshui Tujia Township. There is a national AAAA level scenic spot-Longgang National Geological Park, a highland lake-Gaixiaba Lake and a highland prairie-Mountain Qiyao Prairie. Please follow our lens to the dreaming place.

 Tales of Dragon Cave

Legend goes that the Dragon had nine children. The third one was named Jiaotu. When Jiaotu was young, he did not care that much about his looks. Years later, he grew up, went through several blind dates, but ended up all alone as all the girls were all terrified by his ferocious face. When he was 20 years old, his Father arranged another blind date for him. On that day, Jiaotu met the girl, and was amazed by her gorgeous looks that almost took his breath away. He was thinking that the girl must be “the one” for him. Unexpectedly, the girl fainted from fear at the first glance of Jiaotu. This upset Jiaotu pretty much and he suddenly turned sensitive, self-abased and unhappy.

One day, Jiaotu was traveling faraway. He wanted to find something to amuse himself. Then he came to Qingshui, Yunyang, only to find the local people were living a distressed and poor life. Jiaotu felt sorry for them, and he decided to live there for a while to see if he could be of any help. Just at that very moment, a natural karst cave amidst the mountains and hills came into his sight.

Jiaotu descended his Auspicious Cloud and reached the opening of the cave. He was surprised to find that the cave is composed of 2 chambers. The front chamber is of a round shape and looks rather magnificent and spacious, dotted with pure white stalactites. Those stalactites are very much like furniture of the Dragon King, and there is bed, curtain, looking glass, umbrella, kettle, chairs and stools. The back chamber is a pentagon, but has a bigger area than the front one, with wavy walls. Jiaotu was very fond of the cave, and made his decision to stay.

Having found a place to live, Jiaotu started to ponder on how he could help the local people. Considering his hideous looks, he would not allow himself to be revealed to the villagers, or he would end up scaring them to death and that would mess things up. After a while, a great idea came to him.

On the morning of the next day, every villager of Qingshui saw a piece note paper on their doors, saying: “Villagers, you can write your needs down on the note paper, and put the paper at the entrance of the karst cave not far away. The next day you can come to the entrance again to fetch what you have asked for. I will give you whatever you want. But remember one thing: Do not get into the cave or inquire about who I am. From someone who wants to help.”

This really made a sensation among the villagers. Some believed that someone must be teasing them and some others said maybe a kind-hearted person was really out there to help them. Some were half in doubt and only smoked native tobacco in wall corners, and said nothing.

Eventually, the village head announced: “Leave the argument behind. Let’s do whatever we are told to. Let’s put some pieces of note paper at the entrance of the cave and see if we can really get what we’ve asked for the next day. Trying is a good thing. Anyhow, we risk nothing.”

The village head wrote down “a bag of rice” on the note paper at first, and some others followed him and wrote what they desired the most down on the note paper. The village head picked a bold villager and asked him to put the note paper at the entrance of the cave. On the morning of the next day, the bold villager came to the entrance and saw what they asked for was put at the entrance.

This was spread quickly among villagers, and everyone was talking about it. All villagers wrote down names of articles of daily use they needed on the note paper and put the paper at the entrance. In fact, articles they asked for were somewhat similar, rice, salt, and other daily necessaries. In the time of famine, nothing is more important than food.

So they had enough food and gradually they recovered from poor health conditions. Even the sickly pedants were telling jokes and trying to amuse others.

There was a bed egg in the village. He made a living by stealing things. After he heard that an immortal was living in the cave, he also wrote down his desires on the note paper and put it at the entrance of the cave. This way, his life was better off. One day, he wondered if the one living in the cave was a beautiful fairy, and he started to plan something evil.

That bed egg came to the entrance of the cave on that day. He put the note paper with sometime on it on a big rock at the entrance. He did not leave after doing so as he usually did, but concealed himself among the rocks.

As night fell, the bad egg saw a shadow at the entrance vaguely. Just at that moment, the bright moon came out, and shed light on the shadow at the entrance. The bad egg was frightened and his face turned as white as a sheet. He could not help crying as he found there was no fairy living in the cave. It was a hideous monster.

Jiaotu was also shocked by the cry. But he saw only a shadow of a person rush into the depth of the woods when came to himself.

The next day, all villagers were talking about the experience of the bad egg. Everyone got to know that it was not an immortal that had been helping them, it was only a monster. Scrupulous ones found that the shocking news was originated from that stupid lazy bad egg. Only that he was also flakey at the moment, laughing or crying without any reason. Anyway, who is going to believe anything told by such a lunatic?

In the meantime, Jiaotu was thinking about leaving here, as his looks had been revealed; otherwise, others might come across him and become flakey too, and his previous efforts would go to waste. The idea of such consequences made him decide to leave. People need to find their ways out on their own. Anyhow, they were living a much better life than before.

Then, Jiaotu returned to his Father. By then, Jiaotu’s dream girl had already heard about his stories in Qingshui, and was deeply touched. She realized that Jiaotu was a kind-hearted and trustworthy one despite his ugly appearance, and agreed to marry him.

Later, villagers in Qingshui made up the image of Jiaotu based on the few wacky isolated words of the bad egg, and drew it on a piece of paper. The drawing was then pasted onto the door, as a guard of the house. The image is just the mythical creature usually found on the door, with an iron ring in its mouth. However, the image of the mythical creature is quite the other way compared with Jiaotu that has once lived in the cave.

To memorize the monster that had helped them, villagers named the karst cave as DragonCave.