Most of the soldiers serving in the Ming garrison system did not perform what people usually think of as military duties. The situation in the military colonies thus directly impacted the operation of the overall garrison system. Previous scholarship on the Ming military colony system has mostly focused on the evolution of the system over time and on evaluating its strengths and weaknesses. Policy reforms in the mid-Ming reduced the tax burden on military colony soldiers, resurveyed the remaining colony fields, and ordered family members of soldiers, known as supernumeraries, to take over cultivation of some abandoned fields. Yongchun County, located in mountainous central Fujian, was first established as a county in the tenth century, and by the Song-Yuan period the standard sub-county administration was in place. The military colonies of Yongchun County were first established in 1404. The Hongzhi-era reforms were in fact a repudiation of the earlier reforms, which is precisely why they failed.