Situated in the river valley along the lower reaches of the Xiang River, Changsha is the capital city of Hunan province. It covers an area of 11,819 square kilometers with a total population of 8.39 million. The recorded history of Changsha can be traced back 3,000 years.
In 1904 Changsha was opened to foreign trade, and large numbers of Europeans and Americans settled there. Mao Zedong was born in nearby Shaoshan, and he studied and taught at Changsha. Today Changsha is an important commercial center and river port, with abundant light industrial production.