Keying House/Oriental Hotel corner of Pedder & QRC c1858 | Gwulo: Old Hong Kong

Keying House/Oriental Hotel corner of Pedder & QRC c1858

Keying House/Oriental Hotel corner of Pedder & QRC c1858

Original Description from The Chater Collection Book published in 1924 by Thomas Butterworth: 

An interesting photograph of the sea front of Messrs. Dent & Co/s premises before a Praya was built and shows godowns on ground floor with roof forming a terrace in front of the first floor of main building used probably for living
rooms, the second floor being bedrooms. Sloping stone landing piers extend seawards. Messrs. Lindsay & Co/s premises are on r. of photograph and these two firms blocked, in 1859, the scheme of Sir John Bowring for a continuous Praya from the cricket ground to Westpoint. Photograph. 8 | x n . On mount was written 'Messrs. Dent and Co/s house, Hongkong. Before the Praya was built/ Published at the China Magazine office, Hongkong. (The photograph was kindly presented by Mrs. Lowcock, Wimbledon Common.)

Lindsay & Co is actually off to the left of the photo The description given in the Chater book seems incorrect, it is more likely that the photo was taken from a Dent & Co Piere that was adjacent to this building in front of ML 3. Just to the right of Keyring House mostly hidden is the 1st Generation post office on this location, behind that is the Supreme Court. A corner of Duddel's/Jardine's building can be seen on the right

The long single story building between the flagpole on Dent & Co ML4 and Keyring house also appears in this picture of the Hong Kong hotel here. It looks like a stable and may be the stable mentioned here

Date picture taken (may be approximate): 
Friday, January 1, 1858


Please add to places - Queens Road Stables. We need to peek into the rate books to see the order these buildings were in and get their listed names.

After further research I don't think the building on ML 5 ever had anything to do with Dent. He never owned ML5 and I have found no evidence he ever had anything to do with it. He did however own ML3 & 4 from the first land auction in 1841. I think this photo is taken from Dent & Co's pier at ML4. The original Marine House on ML3/4 was Dent & Co's Headquarters & main godown. 


The above building was likely built by Dadabhoy Rustomjee's firm as their headquarters/godown in HK as he bought this site in the first Land auction in 1841. 


Here is the list of the first land auction.

First Land Auction 1841
First Land Auction 1841, by annelisec


annelisec your list seems to be missing. Here is what I have come up with so far:


First Land Sales in Hong Kong 1841


34 Marine Lots of Land were sold in Hong Kong on 14th June 1841- GBP3,238 per annum raised in rents


Record of sale:


Sale order    Lot Number     Successful Bidder        Winning Bid - GBP    


1        ML 15:     R Webster             20.00

2        ML 14        H Leighton             21.20

3        ML 13        Gemmell & Co             32.10

4        ML 12        Holliday Wise & Co         38.10

5        ML 11        Heerjeebhoy Rustomjee    52.00

6        ML 10        Heerjeebhoy Rustomjee    52.00

         ML 9        Reserved

7        ML 8        Dirom & Co             57.00

8        ML 7        A Parsee             50.00    

9        ML 6        M/s Hooker & Lane         43.00

10      ML 5        D & M Rustomjee & Co     50.00

11      ML 4        Dent & Co             65.10

12      ML 3        Dent & Co             64.00

13      ML 2        Lindsay & Co             80.00        

14      ML 1        Gribble Hughes & Co       80.00


Lots ML 1-5 ran along the north side of Queens Road east to west from the present HSBC building to the Central Market


15        ML 20        D & M Rustomjee & Co     111.00

16        ML 21        Innes Fletcher & Co         150.00

17        ML 22        Gemmell & Co             140.00

18        ML 23/24    Heerjeebhoy Rustomjee    160.00

19        ML 26        Jardine Matheson & Co     150.00

20        ML 27        Jardine Matheson & Co     185.00

21        ML 28        Jardine Matheson & Co     230.00


Lots 20-26 were in Admiralty & ran along the north side of Queens Road east to west from Morgans Bazaar to below Flagstaff House. Starting with Jardine Matheson’s lots which became the Commissariat within 18 months all the lots eventually became part of the Military base.


22        ML xx?     R Gully             35.00

23        ML 30?    M/s Jamieson & How        60.00

24        ML 32?    John Smith            57.00

25        ML 36?    John Smith            67.00

26        ML xx?     Framjee Jamsetjee         25.00

27        ML 38?    Captain Hart             57.00


These Lots ran west to east on the North Side of Queens Road East between Admiralty and Spring Gardens. - all but one had lapsed to the Government by the late 1840’s. I am unsure if the lot numbers are correct.


28        ML 40        MacVicar & Co         75.00

29        ML 41        MacVicar & Co         95.00

30        ML 42        Turner & Co             100.00

31        ML 43        Turner & Co             115.00

         ML 44        Reserved

         ML 45        Reserved

32        ML 46        T Larkins             265.00

33        ML 47        Fox MacVicar & Turner    250.00

         ML 49        Unsold

34        ML 51        Captain Morgan         205.00


Lots 40 & 47 ran west to east were roughly opposite today's Hopewell centre on the North Side of Queens Road East

ML 49 is possibly the other side of Morrison Hill just before Canal street. ML 51 is East point

There were about 50 lots sold on the day, the rest were inland lots I have found no record of what was sold


KeyIng house in the title (rather than Keyring) please.

Today, ML 52 (subdivided) is where East Point was.

Please add to Places shown

Dent & Co. - ML 3 (&4) Queen's Rd (1st generation)