Morrison Hill [????-1929] | Gwulo: Old Hong Kong

Morrison Hill [????-1929]

Current condition: 
Demolished / No longer exists
Date Place demolished: 

Morrison Hill was demolished for the Praya East (Wanchai) reclamation in the 1920s.

The hill did not go without a fight. 

"To ease the transport of sand and soil, the reclamation tender specified that the fill should come from Morrison Hill. Rail tracks were thus laid from Morrison Hill to the waterfront.  It was, however, discovered later that the lower part of Morrison Hill was composed mostly of granite.    This did not only delay the reclamation, but also led to a sharp rise in costs (Morrison Hill was finally leveled after the war)."


Photos that show this place


If you had to guess (from the old pictures or from the old maps) where would the peak of Morrison Hill be today?  

This is the map to use

I'll let you decide and tell us :)

Yikes.  Not a single contour to be seen anywhere :-) 

What are/were those buildings on top?

The 1931 map from this story would be a much better place to hunt from.  Do you know where I could see the full version of this map?

"Morrison Education Society School"

In the 1901 map it appears that a new building 1,2,3 & 4 Morrision Hill had been built.  We have jurors who had those addresses.


And I found this in Europe in China:, 1995

Sir E. Belcher took the true position of Hongkong on a hillock, within a stone's throw of the houses on Morrison Hill, as being in 22° 16' 30" N. Lat. and 114° 08' 30" E. Long.

There were rumors about the demolition of Morrison Hill already in the 1850s. I read this in a German Missionary Report. And here is some more about Morrison Hill from these reports:

In 1851 some of the then abandoned and rotten buildings of the former Morrison Education Society were occupied rentfree by missionaries of the Berlin Ladies Missionary Society for China. The missionaries were 3 ladies and one man. The condition of the buildings was desolate.  In one of the stables Dr. Goecking, an independent Missionary and doctor from Halle, Germany, opened an small hospital for Chinese. For a short term the missionaries moved to a house in Garden Street due to the terrible health conditions on Morrison Hill. But they moved back in 1858. Garden Road turned out to be too expensive for the Society. The missionay reports complain that land is so limited and the rental fees are so unbelievable high in Hong Kong (even in Hong Kong some things never change ;-( ) Back on Morrison Hill they had to pay 2/3 of the lease fixed for the place.

In the 1850s Morrison Hill was a long way of Victoria City. Bandits threatened the dwellers. Some of the goats the missionaries kept  for milk were stolen. One missionary was attacked, but courageously fought the looters off. A night-watchman had to be hired. The pious missionaries kept a gun in the house and used it to chase bandits off.

On April, 16th 1859 the buildings on Morrison Hill stood for auction. They were called up twelve times; without any reaction by the bidders. Perhaps the rumors about a planned demolition of Morrison Hill explains their reluctance. Sadly the German missionaries had no orders from Berlin to buy the place. Finally he prussian vice-consul Gustav Freiherr von Overbeck threw in $50.- hoping to make a bargain. Now others joined him. In the end the place was sold for $  3600.- to an Englishman.

Legco 1917

THE GOVERNOR―In connection with Financial
Minute 91, which recommends the payment of a sum
of $275,000 in aid of the vote Public Works
Extraordinary for compensations and resumptions, I
would like to mention that this compensation is for
the resumption of that very picturesque hill called
Morrison Hill and the buildings thereon. This sum of
$275,000 is the sum agreed upon with the owners
three years ago.