Beyond Lion Rock book written and published by Nancy Kwan, HK stone breaking connection

HF: I am very pleased to able to offer a little publicity on the publication of Nancy Kwan’s recently published book, Beyond Lion Rock, self-published, 2019. The book is part biographical but also includes the effects of political and historical  events on her family and the people of Hong Kong.

Nancy contacted me a few months ago, explaining she was writing the book and asking  for permission to use the image below which was included in our article, Stone Cutters’ Lives in Hong Kong – 1952 article. I readily agreed, and was very interested to note on receiving Beyond Lion Rock from Nancy that she  had included this paragraph, on page 33, recalling the her family involvement in the stone breaking industry in Hong Kong.

“Gung and Kau-fu worked as stone breakers in a quarry. Since the 1800s, granite had been Hong Kong’s only natural resource for export, and the industry demanded a great number of labourers. However, the companies did not formally employ the stone-breakers, but some middle men paid them based on the amount of the stones they broke. Because of the flexible working times and instant cash payments, the job became popular with many tough Hakka peasants, particularly the new comers. A lot of stone breakers went to work with their wives and children, but Mum and Po preferred to sell Hakka dumplings on the streets. Sometime later, Gung became a construction worker and Kau-fu a chef.”

Stone breakers Courtesy: IDJ. date,location unknown

Stone breakers Courtesy: IDJ date/location unknown

If you are interested in buying the book you can do so through this website: 

Beyond Lion Rock Nancy Kwan Book Cover

Source: Beyond Lion Rock, Nancy Kwan, pub Nancy Kwan, 2019.

This article was first posted on 18th June 2019.

Related Indhhk articles:

  1. Stone breaking in early 20th Century Hong Kong
  2. Stone Cutters’ Lives in Hong Kong – 1952 article
  3. Stone breaking in Hong Kong – two further images
  4. Film of quarry stone breaking by hand 1953 – possible location?
  5. Tai Shek-ha 大石下 Stone-quarry – An 1841 hamlet near Belcher Bay, Kennedy Town?
  6. Quarrying and transportation of stone in Hong Kong, 1841
  7. Quarries in Hong Kong – a list

One comment

  • Joseph Li

    A valuable memory record narrating the way how that generation was brought up. It is inspiring and aspiring.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *