Looking for photos of expatriate kitchens in 1930s / 1940s | Gwulo: Old Hong Kong

Looking for photos of expatriate kitchens in 1930s / 1940s

Hi all.

I am doing research on 1930s/40s Hong Kong, in particular trying to find images and information on kitchens owned by expatriates. I am designing a theatre show, hence my need for research! Any images or info on what would commonly be seen, staples, etc. would all be appreciated. I've trawled the internet and here, finding some things but it's tricky to find within this time frame. So far I've done a sweep of the Facebook group "HK in the Colonial Era" and that led me to some 1960s images from the USA's National Archives, but I am hoping to find something a bit more in the period.

Thank you in advance.


If you look under the heading "CE Warren & Co. then CE Warren & Co. Ld.", on Gwulo, you will see an ad for Dover Cooking ranges and an ad for Cheavin's water filters. (1917). I shall be reunited with my papers at the weekend and will see what kitchen products the company was advertising in the 1930s and 1940s. If I find anything useful on my computer I will add it to this thread. It's worth your checking the newspapers for those decades to see what other companies were advertising too.

CEW ad HKT 7:8:1924.png
CEW ad HKT 7:8:1924.png, by Jill

CEW Tiles ad 30-10-1939 HKT.png
CEW Tiles ad 30-10-1939 HKT.png, by Jill

Hi Jill,


Thank you, this is definitely a great way to research, I wouldn't have thought of it! Thank you. I'll look into these some more.

Visited King Yin Lei, the Chinese mansion on Stubbs Road a few years ago and noted the kitchen. Seems to have been modelled on European standards. Photo here

My recollection of my parents' kitchen is of a very deep and long ceramic sink. There will be ads for those, I'm sure.  I don't think stainless steel came in till later. As there were no electric dish washers, all the washing up had to be done in the one sink. 

There's a photo of part of a kitchen in a Shanghai appartment c.1937, on the Historical Photographs of China web site: Ro-n0716, taken, it seems, when the gas supply was not available: https://www.hpcbristol.net/visual/ro-n0716. Heavy enamelled cast iron cooker, with plate rack. White tiles. Aluminium pots and pans. Cramped.


Thanks all for these.