1928 View down Wellington Street

Wed, 09/24/2014 - 21:21

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

What: The signboards along the left side of the street show the trades that were popular in this area:

Business signs

While over the road a much plainer sign marks the offices of Hong Kong's longest-running newspaper.

China Mail

The China Mail was founded in 1845, and closed 129 years later in 1974 [1]. The SCMP is catching up, but it was founded 'only' 110 years ago in 1903.

When: The newspaper's office has a board outside showing the day's headlines:


That's handy for us, as it pins down the date this photo was taken. Here's the same day's newspaper, published on 18th August, 1928:


Who: In the foreground we can see goods and people being carried along. There's the blur of a sedan chair bouncing its way downhill, and a couple of people carrying loads on shoulder poles. This man is doing his best to avoid the attention of the paparazzi:

Carrying pole

It's a busy part of town. The break in the shadows marks the junction with D'Aguilar Street, and we can see there is quite a crowd gathered there:


Trivia: Some time back we showed this view:

1930s Wellington Street

It also shows Wellington Street, but looking in the opposite direction, from the junction with D'Aguilar Street.

Regards, David


  1. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_China_Mail

Reference: A269

Date picture taken
18 Aug 1928


Wouldn't it be so nice if we could return to these good old days in Central :

No cars, No vans, No large tourist buses and/or goods vehicles belching out hot and dirty exhaust fumes. No railings lining all the footpaths , no need to walk long distances to pedestrain crossings, no annoying traffic lights preventing pedestrians from crossing streets where and when  they want to ?

If only.................

Who doesn't dream about the good ol' days when the population in HK was small and the pace of living was slow? It was only after traffic accidents began to occur frequently that the demand for railings & pedestrian crossings grew. As a result people lived a lot longer too!

Barbara Anslow remembers this view:

This picture shows places very familiar to me, as I used to have my dresses made at a Chinese tailor's shop in one of the streets mentioned, I think it was D'Aguilar street. ((Barbara used to go here between 1938 and 1941, and 1945-1959.))

I had to go up a very narrow staircase to the tailor's place, which was always busy with Chinese working hard on clothes, usually one ironing.  As soon as I arrived, a desk electric fan would be switched on for my comfort.  Round the walls were large portraits of (presumably) ancestors of the main tailor. You would chose a style from his pattern magazines, these tailors could copy anything, and so quickly!  You could choose what you wanted, return in a day or so to try on, then the completed dress would be available in one more day if you were in a hurry. Fantastic service!