This story covers rags-to-riches, mixed-marriage, family intrigues - and it's all true!
We first heard about it when Sean Olson wrote to us from Ireland, asking for help finding information about his great-grandfather, John Olson. John arrived in Hong Kong from Sweden around 1860, and lived here until his death in 1918. He started with nothing, but apparently had a measure of business success. Which was a good thing as he had seven children by two different Chinese women to support.
Sean was being modest when he asked for information, as he'd already done a lot of research. Luckily for us he has written up the research, and has just posted it to the web - link below.
You'll see there are still gaps in the story, and a gaping hole as far as any knowledge of his Chinese ancestors goes. If you can add any more information, please leave a message below, or contact Sean via the email address on his website.
(If you add any new places / photos / forum posts related to his story, please tag them John Olson, so they're easy to find. Here's what we have so far.)
10 Oct 2012 Update from Sean:
I have just put up a new website www.amanfromkarlshamn.com which tells the story of my great grandfather John Olson who arrived in Hong Kong around 1860 and died there in 1918.