China Sugar Refinery
China Sugar Refinery Co.
Involvement of the extended Rodger Family from Greenock, Scotland.
During genealogy research on my brother-in-law’s family from Greenock, Scotland, I came across a number of the extended Rodger family having significant connection with the operation and management of the China Sugar Refinery from 1879 to its closure in 1927.
Research revealed that Alexander Rodger, born in 1853 in Greenock, Scotland, was listed in the 1871 Scottish census as a Cooper age 17. The Hong Kong PRO Carl Smith records reveal that Alexander came to Hong Kong and was employed on staff at the China Sugar Refinery in 1879 following the takeover by Messrs. Jardine Matheson & Co., Ltd. from Messrs Wahee, Smith & Co., on the 1st January 1878. Alexander Rodger was later listed in the Hong Kong Jurors lists as an Assistant in 1881 and in 1896 as Superintendent and in 1905 was listed as Manager of the China Sugar Refinery in which position he remained until 1915 when ill health forced him to retire.
Alexander’s younger brother John Rodger was listed in the 1881Scotish Census as an engineer apprentice in Greenock age 19. The 1894 Hong Kong Jurors list records John Rodger as an Assistant at the China Sugar Refinery and the 1896 Jurors list records him as a Sugar Boiler. John is listed as Assistant Manager in the 1923 HongKong Directory with G. M. Shaw as the manager. John returned to London in June 1923 and his occupation was listed as a Consultant Engineer on the ships manifest. He returned to Hong Kong in September 1926 and retired in April 1927 when the Company went into liquidation.
Alexander’s brother-in-law James Forbes was listed in the 1881Scotish Census as a Sugar Boiler in Greenock and is listed by the PRO in the Carl Smith cards as employed at the China Sugar Refinery as an Assistant in 1887 and remained in that position until 1895 when he and his family returned to Greenock. James is listed in the 1901 Scottish census as a Sugar Boiler and died in Greenock in 1906.
James Forbes’ son, John Rodger Forbes returned to Hong Kong and is listed in the 1906 Jurors list for that and subsequent years working at the China Sugar Refinery as a Sugar Boiler in which position he remained until his death in Hong Kong in 1916.
Another of James Forbes son’s, Alexander Rodger Forbes also returned to Hong Kong and is listed on the 1909 Jurors list working at the China Sugar Refinery as a Sugar Boiler. PRO Carl Smith cards record Alexander Rodger Forbes was listed as Manager when the company folded in 1927. However, it is not known when he was elevated to the position of Manager. Following the liquidation of the Refinery Alexander Rodger Forbes joined A. S. Watson and Company and died in Hong Kong in 1933 and is buried in the Jewish Cemetery.
Hong Kong Directory 1923