Messrs. Shewan, Tomes & Co

Hugh Farmer: Shewan, Tomes & Co. was one of the leading  trading companies in Hong Kong and China during the late 19th and early 20th century. When Russell & Co. then one of the largest mercantile firms in the Far East went out of business in 1891, former employees Scotsman, Robert Shewan and Englishman, Charles Alexander Tomes took over the remains of the operation and […]

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World War Two – 1945 BAAG report – utilities

Hugh Farmer: Elizabeth Ride has sent a British Army Aid Group (BAAG) report from 1st March 1945, An Outline of Conditions in Occupied Hong Kong.  Here I am posting the section on Utilities :- Electricity supply including information about – both HK Electric Co and China Light & Power Co – restrictions imposed on supply – certain industries attempting to generate their […]

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Commercial Posters – Punk firecrackers, Jazz hair pomade, Red A brand plastic…

Hugh Farmer: Thanks to IDJ for sending in these wonderful adverts. Information about any of the companies or their products would be very useful. I think in particular it would be good to know the exact locations of their factory(ies) in Hong Kong. Angel Brand Firecrackers Manufactured by Kwong Man Lung Firecracker Factory Kwong Man Lung appears to have been […]

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The KCR – choices of routes, construction and opening

Hugh Farmer with thanks to IDJ for the main account: The idea of connecting Hong Kong and China with a railway was first proposed to prominent Hong Kong businessmen in March 1864 by a British railway engineer, Sir Rowland MacDonald Stephenson (1808-1895), who had considerable experience of developing railways in India. The minutes of the committee of the Chamber of […]

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Sing Lee Shrimp Sauce and Paste Factory, Tai O

Hugh Farmer: When I first came to Lamma Island in the early 1990s  a powerful odour greeted the visitor as you entered Yung Shue Wan. The smell was  instantly recognisable and initially overwhelmingly unpleasant. The manufacturing of shrimp paste. I got used to the odour. Then I  began to actually like it. And now I miss it, it’s still made on […]

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Messrs Barretto & Co – managers of The Imperial Brewing Company 1907

Hugh Farmer: IDJ has sent these images of Messrs Barretto & Co. The company, established by the two gentlemen below  in 1895, had a large range of business concerns in Hong Kong. We are probably most interested in the company’s involvement with the Imperial Brewing Company. “An industry only recently, started in Hongkong is that carried on — under the general management […]

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Hong Kong Trams – linking 1881 and 2014 by way of 30th July 1904

Hugh Farmer: The SCMP of 19th Febuary 2014 included an article “Still ding-dinging after 100 years”. This stated that Hong Kong Tramways had celebrated its 110th anniversary the day before. In fact this date marks the start of Hong Kong Tramways (HKT) celebration of its 110th Anniversary which will actually be on 30th July 2014.  Its website proudly announces that HKT is […]

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1957 Trade Fair TST – Chinese company names translated and indexed

Hugh Farmer: This article is a joint effort of Thomas Ngan, IDJ, Neil Morris and myself. Thomas has done a fantastic job in first translating the Chinese company names and products. And secondly by inserting arrows into the two photos below to link the advertising signs to the index. A lot of work Thomas, thanks very much. * The first […]

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