Publication of Nicholas Kitto’s book on China’s former treaty ports
I am delighted to offer Nicholas Kitto a little publicity on the publication of his book, Trading Places, a photographic journey through China’s former treaty ports.
China’s treaty ports were cities along its coast and on major rivers which were forcibly opened to foreign trade by the Western powers, starting from the early 19th century. The treaty port era extended from then until 1943, and during this time foreigners had a significant presence in China. This new book contains more than 700 photographs of many buildings from this period, most of them commissioned by foreign interests. Many people argue that they should never have been built, let alone still be standing. But this book is not concerned with the rights and wrongs of how these buildings came to be. It simply celebrates their existence. A significant number are innately beautiful and all of them embody a history that has clear links to our own time and thus remain relevant.
Hong Kong-based photographer Nicholas Kitto specialises in historical buildings, and though he hails from the Isle of Man in the British Isles, he works mostly in the Greater China region. This book was driven by his interest in the history of China’s treaty port era, in which several generations of his family played a part.
Nick has contributed to a number of our website articles.
Firstly, Companies in China with a Hong Kong connection:
- Asiatic Petroleum Company – contemporary photographs of its Shanghai building
- Asiatic Petroleum Company employees, a compilation – information needed
- Dent & Company’s early days in China and John Dent
- Arnhold, Karberg & Company – founded in Hong Kong, 1866
- Russell & Company, in China 1824 to 1891
And secondly, articles specifically about Hong Kong subjects:
- John MacNeile Price, Surveyor General of Hong Kong, the Tai Tam reservoirs
- The Signal Tower, Blackhead Point – link to Blackhead and Company
- Tai Tam Water Works – 1885 HK Government Report
- The Aberdeen Reservoirs
- Tai Tam Upper Reservoir – Historic Building Appraisal
- The Tai Tam Reservoirs – recent photographs