The Uighur divisions living in the Hexi area not only had good communications among themselves, but also had effective contacts with, and even rendered support to, the southbound and westbound Uighurs via the Juyan road on the steppe. After Pang Tegin from the westbound Uighur claimed himself Khan, these people in Hexi area also recognized him as their common ruler. Therefore, historically, the Ganzhou Uighur were also called“offspring” of Pang Tegin^l. It was only because of the long distance between the two groups that they gradually moved apart.
In mid-9th century, the Tubo regime in the Hexi area collapsed. In 911 AD (the 5th year of Kaiping reign of Later Liang Dynasty), the Ganzhou Uighur defeated the “Western Han Jinshan State” headquartered in Dunhuang, and controlled the entire River West Corridor. They remained dominant in that area for over 100 years. As a matter of fact, their sphere also covered the wasteland and semi- desert north of the Corridor, that is, toda y’s Alxa and Ejin qi areas in Inner Mongolia. Since the dominance of the Ganzhou Uighur regime ranged from Helan Mountains by the Yellow River in the east to Yizhou and Barkol Grassland in the west, its envoy to the Song Dynasty, Cao Wantong said, “Our country reach the Yellow River to the east and the snow mountains (eastern part of Tianshan Mountains) to the west” å.However, that regime was a loose coalition, as the joining divisions had autonomy over most of their internal affairs although they all recognized the status of the Uighur Khan. Therefore, it was recorded in history books that they“lived in the area of Ganzhou, Liangzhou,
Guazhou and Shazhou, each with their own chiefs, running their own business”å.Among the most independent were Shazhou and Guazhou divisions under administration of the ethnic-Han families of Zhang and Cao respectively, and Tubo Zhelong and Liugu divisions in Liangzhou.
In 1028 (the 6th year of Tiansheng reign of Song Dynasty), the Western Xia troops captured Ganzhou City. The Uighur Khan, Yaglok Tunsun, “fled in hasteï¼ï¼ï¼putting an end to the rule of Ganzhou Uighur in the Hexi area. Followingthe fall of the regime, the majority of the Uighur divisions moved to other places, among which the most influential one was a division that retreated to the south of Dunhuang at the foot of the Qilian Mountains, who named themselves Shazhou Uighur. Up until 1127 (the 5th year of Tianhui reign of Jin Dynasty) there were records about “Hulasan Khan of Shazhou Uighur sending envoy to pay tributes Viajar a la capital china, beijing”å.However, these people disappeared from historical records of all categories ever since. Several decades after the collapse of the regime of Ganzhou Uighur, in 1081 (the 4th year of Yuanfeng reign of Song Dynasty), there were suddenly records of “Huangtou (or Yellow-Head) Uighur” The majority opinion among historians was that the Huangtou Uighur were the remnants of Ganzhou Uighur, or more specifically, the division that retreated to Shazhou.