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Three Years and Eight Months

Icy SMITH [????- ]
Date of events covered by this document: 
Mon, 1941-12-08 - Tue, 1945-09-25


This is an unusual book. It covers a topic we don't often read about in English - the experiences of the local Chinese and Eurasian population during the Japanese occupation of Hong Kong. And despite the dark subject, it has lots of colour illustrations and writes about the experiences of a young boy, making it attractive to a younger audience.

Sample pages from "Three Years and Eight Months", by Icy Smith

1907 Soldiers swimming

When: Here's the back of the photo:

"Taken at Kowloon Pier. (old city) A Coy's swimming test. 7/07"

Which I'm guessing means it was taken in July 1907.

Who: Soldiers from "A" Company. A couple have their caps on, and one

 Read more »

1928 Garrison at Lyemun

When: 11th September 1928, according to the back of the postcard:

Where: That also tells us we're looking at the "Garrison at Lyemun". Today it's the site of the Museum of Coastal Defence [1], but in 1928 it was

c.1915 Des Voeux Road West

Where: We're looking east along Des Voeux Road West. In the distance you can see the road bends away to the right at the junction with Western Street. It still has the same layout today: Read more »

1960s Unknown location

Who / What / Where: I'm hoping you can tell me! I don't recognise any of the buildings in this photo.

When: It looks like a stormy summer's day.

I bought this together with the recently posted photo of the HKFC stadium [1]. We dated that to 1963, so I guess this photo was also taken in the early 1960s.

Regards, David


  1. 1960s Looking west over HKFC

c.1925 Gun in Kowloon

What: No prizes for noticing the gun in the photo! It was one of the guns installed to

1960s Looking west over HKFC

What: The big building in the foreground is the HKFC's (Hong Kong Football Club) old stadium. Does anyone know which years the stadium opened, and later was demolished?

Where: The photographer is standing to the east of the HKFC. The angle puts him above the stadium, but not so high that he was on top of  Read more »

1928 View down Wellington Street

Where: We're on Wyndham Street, looking west along Wellington Street.

What: The signboards along the left side of the street show the  Read more »

Kowloon Wharves after the 1906 typhoon

When: The strong typhoon had hit Hong Kong on the 18th September, 1906. 

What: This photo, taken shortly afterwards shows a couple of the large ships that were driven ashore.

Does anyone recognise the ships? I am out of Hong Kong for the next few weeks, so I don't have access to any history books.

Where: Kowloon wharves, near today's Ocean Centre and Harbour City. These little wagons often appear in old photos of the wharves. They were used to  Read more »

R E Jones' diary goes home

Yesterday I met Rae at her home in England, and delivered her father's diary:

Rae first got in touch two weeks ago [1]. By coincidence I'd already booked a flight to London for last week, so I asked if I could pay her a visit. That was arranged, then on Tuesday she mentioned that

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