National Tavern [????-????]

Submitted by David on Thu, 03/04/2010 - 17:49
Current condition
Demolished / No longer exists

This is linked to the John Olson story - he was the publican of this Tavern for many years.

Initial discussions of its location placed it much further west, based on an address given as "292, Queen's Road West". Today, that address is for a building on the corner of Centre Street and Queen's Road West in Sai Ying Pun.

But in fact the tavern was back in Sheung Wan. We can confirm that from the mentions of the Tavern in the newspaper reports of Annual Licensing sessions:

29 Oct 1869: Licenses were granted to [...] John Olson of the "National Tavern" [...].  HK Daily Press

22 Oct 1870. John Olson, "National Tavern" Queen's Road Central, inland lot No 95, house 292. G R Lammert, G O F Rodatz, storekeepers, sureties. Feb 3rd 1866, license transferred to present holder by Antonio da Cruz; January 20 1870, for detention of seman's effects fined $10. A very noisy house. Granted, cautioned in reference to complaint of Police.
HK Daily Press

The key point is in the 1870 report, which gives the address as:

Queen's Road Central, inland lot No 95, house 292.

Looking at old maps [1], we can see Inland Lot 95 was bounded by Queen's Road to the North, and East Street to the east - the location shown on the map above.

The present-day address of this block is 338, Queen's Road Central. Something to keep in mind for future - that the numbering system along Queen's Road has been revised at least once in the past.

[1] See plates 3-1c, and 3-2 in the Mapping Hong Kong book.

UPDATE 2018-1-16: I originally thought that the National Tavern and the National Hotel were different names for the same business. But now we find that the National Hotel was at a different location, see:

Photos that show this Place



Thanks moddsey,

What a fascinating advert. I assume the American table was for pool!

It is I suppose impossible to find out who bought it and for how much. I wonder if he was prompted to sell because of the death of his brother Olof in 1880 who I think managed the place while he got on with other, probably nefarious, things!

Thanks again.