A black-and-white photograph showing soldiers of the Austro-Hungarian naval command on a firing range near Beijing. Most of the soldiers are on alert in the firing trench.
The presence of the Austro-Hungarian army in China was related to the trade agreement signed between the Austro-Hungarian Empire and the Beijing court in 1869. Shortly thereafter, the Viennese government opened its representative office in Beijing in a small mansion, which was converted into an embassy in 1896. Since Austria-Hungary was involved in the suppression of the Boxer Rebellion, it received so-called concessions in the city of Tianjin from China in 1902 for the damages suffered.
The photograph is the 36th of 449 photographs of Beijing and its surroundings in the album of Ivan Skušek Jr., purchased during his stay in Beijing (1914–1920). In the handwritten inventory of the album, the photograph is referred to as Oest. eng. Marine-Detachment am Schiessplatz. (DZ)