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Welcome to Gwulo.com, and over 30,000 pages about old Hong Kong.

If it's your first visit, you might like to use the search box at the top of the page to find what you're looking for, check out the latest old photos, or just scroll down to browse through recent articles.

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Kind regards,

David

PS 'Gwu lo' is roughly how '古老' sounds in Cantonese. It means 'ancient' or 'old-fashioned'.

History Notes, issue 1

Issue 1 of History Notes was compiled by the late Phillip Bruce, and published as a printed booklet in the late 1980s. It covers topics ranging from prostitutes to poems, pirates to policemen:

Many thanks to Mr Bruce's family for letting me re-publish the booklet here on Gwulo, to give it a second lease of life and introduce it to a new audience.

Book type: 

Chinese-style baby carriers (孭带) in Hong Kong

I've looked at this photo many times over the last few months, as it's one that's going into the Gwulo book. It got me thinking about how the cloth baby carrier has gone in and out of fashion.

Baby carrier on back

 

The photo above was taken in 1954. I also found one in my collection that looks older, I guess taken sometime where in the

Early 1900s view northeast from the Peak, looking over the Naval Yard Extension

Here's the photo I mentioned last week:

c.1904 View looking northeast from the Peak

 

It's a large print, so there's lots of detail to see. For an example, look at the red square above, then look at that section enlarged below

Summer update - UK visit / H2 plans / Next photos

This is the Jetlag edition of the weekly newsletter. Today we flew back to Hong Kong after a few weeks in the UK visiting family & friends. Though it's past midnight there's no sign of anyone feeling sleepy ...

I'll start with a few "Gwulo-ey" places we visited in the UK, then look at plans for the rest of the year, and finish with a question about what photos you'd like to see here.

UK sights

We started with a few days in London. I'd tried to go to the National Army Museum there earlier in the year, but it was closed for renovation. It's the home of the Tyndareus Stone, which used to be up on the Peak, but was moved back to the UK before the handover. The museum has re-opened, so I made another attempt to see the stone. Unfortunately, after the renovation the stone has been moved into storage, so it is no longer on display.

Still, the museum was an interesting place to spend a couple of hours, but not big enough to need another visit for a few years. The Science and Natural History Museums are a different matter, and they are regular favourites. We've also started visiting the Victoria & Albert Museum, which I'd ignored in the past. The Science Museum has a new mathematics exhibition this year, that went down well with our 11-year-old daughter, while our 14-year-old preferred sketching in the V&A.

From London we collected a hire car and drove over to my hometown in southwest Wales. A rainy day gave me the excuse to visit a couple of museums along the Milford Haven waterway, starting with the

Views along the tram line in the 1920s

1926 Praya East

Join us on a tram ride through 1920s Hong Kong, keeping an eye out for these along the way:

  • Typhoon damage: Several photos show trams damaged in a strong typhoon that hit Hong Kong in August 1923
  • Industrial action: One photo shows a tram with a banner, “Tramways volunteers apply here”. The photo was taken during the strike and boycott of 1925-26. 
  • The trams' changing appearance: At the start of the 1920s, the upper decks on trams had a canvas roof, but open sides. The canvas roof was later replaced with a solid roof, and by the end of the decade all trams had enclosed upper decks, looking similar to the trams we see today. It took time for changes to work their way through the whole fleet, so you'll see some photos show two different generations of tram.

Now on with the photos:

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