The return of the Torgut Mongols from Russia to China in 1771 is a rarely known event. The size of the migrating group has been variously estimated to be 150,000-400,000 people. However, due to raids by Russians and other ethnic groups, thirst and starvation, only 85,000 made it back to China's northwestern region alive.
Once home, the Torguts were divided by China's Qing Government into several groups and settled across various regions between today's Xinjiang Province and Mongolia. Another group of approximately 70,000 Torguts were left behind in Russia, along today's Volga River, and became what is known today as the Kalmyks.
But what has happened since then? Man Lin, the 13th-generation descendent of Ubashi Khan, the legendary man who led the Torguts home, recalls hundreds of years of the people's history in this valuable auto/biography. It is a personal and realistic account of the birth of modern Xinjiang and her people's continuous struggle for freedom and independence.