Chu Lu Kuk / Chek Lap Kok Island Granite Quarry – early 19th century to 1960s?
James Chan: I found this reference to Chu Lu Kok Island Granite Quarry while looking for something else. The documents here come from the Public Works Department, 1906.
The documents say the island was “on the north of Lantao Island” though the Particulars of the Lot say “north of Chu Lu Kuk. A mistake? I can’t find where this island was either as Chu Lu Kuk or Chu Lou Kok. Is it Chek Lap Kok (also known as Chek Lap Chau), which was almost entirely flattened when the airport was built?
Maybe I am missing something very obvious. Does anyone have more information ?
Thomas Ngan has replied as a comment re-posted here:
That should be Chek Lap Kok alright. I could a blog entry (http://architecturelog.blogspot.hk/) talking about squatters in Tai O and it would seem some of the squatters built in the 1940’s or earlier used granite blocks from Chek Lap Kok Quarry as foundations.
The romanization variations must have been caused by some local dialects as different dialects could have very different pronunciations even with the same written Chinese words or phrases. In some extreme circumstances a pronounced word might not even have its written counterpart at all.
Thomas Ngan adds: The online exhibition section link below mentioned “Quarrying started in early 19th century to mid 20th century, mainly at the north coast of the island”. A Tin Hau Temple built with granite there had been removed and rebuilt in Lantau.
Hugh Farmer: Here is what the above webpage says, “The inhabitants of the island practiced farming and quarrying. Quarrying started in early 19th century to mid 20th century, mainly at the north coast of the island. There were about 200 people living on the island in the 1950’s. The number of inhabitants rose sharply in the 1960’s. The population started to fall with the decline in agricultural and quarrying activities. There were only some 20 families remaining on the island when the government announced the plan for the construction of a new airport in the early 1990’s.”
The following also contains information about quarrying on Chek Lap Kok:
This also mentions mining on the island and I will open a new post to introduce this.
This article was first posted on 12th February 2014.
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