In April 1854, inspired by the Taiping Rebellion in central China, members of the Heaven and Earth Society in Guangdong province launched the Hongbing Uprising (红兵起义) in Foshan. The rebellion was led by Chen Kai (陳開) and Li Wenmao (李文茂), who are both of Zhuang ethnicity. They captured several counties and besieged Guangzhou but the Qing army managed to recover most of the territory. The rebels retreated west to Guangxi and captured Xunzhou (modern-day Guiping) in 1855, renamed it to Xiujing (秀京), and made it their capital.
The Dacheng Kingdom army was joined by the forces of other Zhuang rebels such as Huang Dingfeng (黃鼎鳳), Li Wencai (李文彩) and Li Jingui (李錦貴), all rebelled against the Qing since the 1850s.
In November 1856, Li Wenmao besieged and captured Liuzhou. In April 1857, Chen Kai captured Wuzhou. They advanced to Yongzhou (now Nanning) and captured the city. In September 1857, the Dacheng Kingdom managed to expand half of Guangxi, an area equals to northern Vietnam. They issued their own currency called Pingjing Shengbao (平靖勝寶).
In 1857, Li Wenmao attacked Guilin. However, the Qing army, commanded by Jiang Yili (蒋益澧) managed to recapture Wuzhou. During a battle in Huaiyuan, Li Wenmao was killed. Liuzhou then fell to the Qing. In 1859, Chen Kai led a large land and naval force in an attack on Wuzhou. The attack failed and Chen Kai had to retreat with heavy losses.
In February 1861, the Qing army attacked Xiujing. The city fell after a six-month long siege. Chen Kai was killed in the battle. The rebellion then entered an insurgency phase, actively resisting the Qing army until the last rebel holdouts surrendered in May 1864.