After having received Chinese education in the native province, Mr. Chiang went to Japan where he entered and graduated from the Imperial University in Tokyo. In December 1907 he enrolled in the Military Officers’ Academy. He was one of the 64 Chinese students of the fourth batc'h admitted to that Academy. General Chiang took the course on Infantry. Upon his return to China after graduation from the Academy, he took examinations in Peking and was given the rank of Chu-jen.
Subsequently Mr. Chiang was appointed a professor in the Government Military College. There he translated into Chinese several Japanese books on military tactics and terminology which brought to him much fame. While in Japan, General Chiang made the acquaintance of Dr. Sun Yat-sen and became a strong revolutionary agitator. He took a prominent part in the First Revolution. The Provisional government was inaugurated in Nanking on January 1st 1912, the Brithday of the Chinese Republic. On the 4th, President Sun Yat-sen in a Mandate made Chiang Tso-pin a Full General and appointed him Vice-Minister of War. In April 1912, General Chiang was appointed Vice-Minister of War. This position he held until May 1916 when he was promoted to be Chiangchun of the Chiangchunfu, or Military Council. The special title given to him as Chiangchun was “Yeh-Wei”. General Hsu Shu-tseng, commonly known as “Little Hsu” succeeded him as Vice Minister of War.
In July 1916 Mr. Chiang was appointed Vice-Chief of the General Staff. In July 1917 he was ordered to be arrested by Chang Hsun because of his opposition to Chang’s attempt to restore the old monarchy but he had left Peking before the order was issued. Finally Chang failed and at the end of July 1917 General Chiang officially sent in his resignation which was accepted by Tuan Chi-jui. General Chiang was Military Advisor to the Chinese Delegation at the World Peace Conference at Versailles in 1918. Since his retirement from Peking offices, he has been in association with the Southern military and political leaders in the attempt to overthrow the Northern militarists. The trouble in Hubei against Peking in 1921 brought General Chiang’s name to the fore. In the summer of the same year, he rose against Gerieral Wang Chan-yuan then Tuchun of Hubei, and was elected Commander-in -chief of the staff government troops of that Province. He advocated the control of Hupei by the Hupei people. As a result of the uprising, Warig Chan-yuan was compelled to give up his dual post of Tuchun of Hupei and the High Inspecting Commissioner of Hunan and Hubei.
General Chiang did not succeed to make Hupei controlled by the Hupei people, for he himself was subsequently defeated by General Wu Pei-fu who became High Inspecting Commissioner of Hunan and Hupei. Later General Chiang went to Canton and joined Dr. Sun Yat-sen who at once appointed him the Director-General of Operations iri the campaign against the North. General Chiang was a fellow provincial and a close friend of President Li Yuan-hung. When Li Y’uan-hung was invited by the Chihli Generals to re-assume the Presidency of China which he actually did in June 1922 after the Chihli-Mukden War, General Chiang did everything he could to urge his old friend not to accept that invitation. In October 1922 President Li conferred on him the Third Order of Merit.