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We've got details of a good new online resource for anyone researching Hong Kong history. Plus there's a talk by its author tomorrow evening. (But there are only 6 seats left out of 90, so better be quick!)
It's an online database of the 6,000+ burials in the Hong Kong Cemetery, and will be a great help to anyone researching early Hong Kong's residents.
The database was compiled as part of Patricia Lim's research for her recent book. She has generously agreed to make it publicly available, and to let us publish a copy here on gwulo.com.
You can see a condensed version of the database here. It shows each grave's location, and who is buried there. Expanded versions will follow, with photos, inscriptions, and Patricia's additional notes.
The end result of Patricia's project is the book, 'Forgotten Souls: A Social History of the Hong Kong Cemetery'. It's not about the cemetery though, instead it looks at the lives of the people buried there. Here's a sample section's chapter headings to give a flavour:
Section II: The Early Denizens of the Hong Kong Cemetery, 1845–1860
4: Merchants, Clerks and Bankers
5: Servants of the Crown
7: The Merchant Navy
8: Tradesmen, Artisans and Small-Scale Businessmen
9: Beachcombers and the Destitute
11: The Americans
12: The Armed Forces
13: Women and Children
14: The Chinese and Their Position in Relation to the Europeans
Visit the publisher's website for more information about the book, and online ordering.
The talk: 'Forgotten Souls'
Then tomorrow (Thursday, 5th May) evening, , Patricia will give a public talk about the project. Expect to learn about how she did the research, and to hear some of the interesting stories she unearthed but that didn't make it into the book.
The talk is arranged by the Royal Asiatic Society, and will be held in the Garden Room of the Helena May. It starts at 6.30 pm but the room will be open at 6.00. Cost is $50 for RAS members, $70 for non-members. To check if there are still any free seats, and to reserve your place, please call Mrs Katherine Fenton (2813 7500) before noon Thursday.
There will also be a guided walk through the cemetery, led by Patricia. But... unfortunately that is already fully booked.
I'll be interested to hear from you if you find the database useful. And I'll be attending the talk tomorrow - hope to see you there!