Kau Shat Wan 狗虱灣 , Lantau Island – government explosives depot

The history of explosive storage in Hong Kong is an interesting one. The earliest location appears to have been Magazine Island, originally named One Tree Island, which lies just to the West of Aberdeen Harbour.  From 1887 to 1908 it was leased for an annual rent of $100, by the Nobel Explosives Company, who built a magazine, a road and […]

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BAAG Report KWIZ #73 Naval Reports – information about Holt’s Wharf, Taikoo Docks, Aberdeen Dock, Kowloon Wharves and Kowloon Docks

BAAG Report KWIZ #73 Detail A1

Elizabeth Ride has sent BAAG Report KWIZ #73 1944, and noted earlier: After KWIZ #4, the Naval section is not included in the AWM papers, and does not appear again until KWIZ #66, and then in a slightly different format. HF: I am afraid because of time constraints I am no longer able to summarize and list the most salient […]

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Website internet problems

The website is currently undergoing problems with only intermittent internet access on my computer. This is because on Monday morning our house was struck by lightning during a thunderstorm resulting in greater damage and problems that we had at first realized. These are taking longer to correct than I had thought because around 30 properties in our neighbourhood were similarly […]

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Yuet Tung China Works – last company in HK to produce hand-painted porcelain – vanishing HK trades

Mary Anne Le Bas has sent an SCMP article, Six home-grown Hong Kong trades at risk of dying out, published on 21st June 2015. The third of these is about  the Yuet Tung China Works which has been producing hand-painted porcelain since 1928. The article begins: Tso Chi-hung is the manager of Yuet Tung China Works, the last company in Hong […]

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Jehangir Hormusjee Ruttonjee – founder of Hong Kong Brewers and Distillery Ltd

The Dictionary of Hong Kong Biography has an article about Jehangir Hormusjee Ruttonjee b.1880, Balsar, India d.10th February 1960 in Hong Kong, written by Sooni Shroff-Gander. The following are extracts from this: Summoned by his father Hormusjee Rottonjee, a trader in wines, spirits and provisions in Hong Kong since 1884, Jehangir Hormusjee Ruttonjee arrived in the colony at the age of 12 […]

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SS Tien Loong – 1947 a Chinese first

On August 4, 1947, the 10,471 ton Tien Loong was the first steamship owned, managed, financed and crewed by Chinese, to sail from Shanghai to France. And was thus the first such vessel to sail in the Atlantic Ocean. She arrived in Le Havre, France on October 28. Chinese Maritime Trust (a sister company of Island Navigation Corp.) had signed […]

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Log Sawing by hand in Hong Kong

IDJ remembers seeing log sawing by hand particularly in shipyards building wooden junks and sampans but also on construction sites. Many had two or four men pushing and pulling from above and below. They could tear through a log surprisingly accurately and quickly. The frame’s sidebars were used to guide the saw blade in a straight line and achieve the right […]

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Sir Robert Hormus Kotewall, founder of R.H.Kotewall & Co. and connected to many other Hong Kong companies

Kotewall, R.H. Detail Image From Biography In Online The China Story

HF: The following article about Robert Kotewall was written by John M. Carroll and first published in the Dictionary of Hong Kong Biography, edited by May Holdsworth and Christopher Munn. The publisher, HK University Press, has kindly granted permission for it to be posted here, but retains copyright over this material from 2012. I am including this biography on our […]

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A S Watson & Company Ltd aka The Hong Kong Dispensary – a Timeline 1841 to 1945

A S Watson Chemist Detail Advert China Mail 1.8.1878

HF:Watson’s is possibly the oldest retailer still in existence in Hong Kong and unquestionably among a tiny few that have opererated continuously since the early days of the colony… By 1941 Watson’s was already the largest chemist, retailer of health and beauty products, dealer in wines and spirits, and manufacturer of aerated water in Asia. .. Today it is part […]

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