Twentieth Century Impressions of Hongkong, Shanghai, and other Treaty Ports of China/Harbour and Shipping

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By Commander Basil Taylor, R.N., Harbour Master.

HONGKONG Harbour, now recognised as one of the finest in the world, and actually accommodating more shipping than any other, was, prior to the British occupation, of no account, and but little used except by Chinese fishermen (and pirates) and an occasional war junk. Its capabilities as a desirable anchorage do not appear to have received practical recognition until 1834, when Lord Napier, appreciating its strategical and commercial possibilities, recommended its acquisition by the British Government. At that time a considerable amount of trade was carried on in British vessels with Canton and Whampoa, and a certain number of British merchants were resident in the former city. Circumstances, into which it is not necessary here to enter, caused the British community in Canton to lose the goodwill of the Chinese authorities, with the result that they were expelled from the city and British shipping from the river. The former, with the Chief Commissioner of British Trade in China—Captain Elliot, R.N.—took refuge at Macao, then, as now, a Portuguese settlement, while the shipping anchored in Hongkong Harbour. This occurred in 1839.

Captain Elliot appears to have held but a poor opinion of the value of Hongkong as a dependency of the British Crown, or of the safety of the harbour, for he recommended the purchase from Portugal of Macao in preference to it. However, nothing came of his proposals, fortunately for British trade in the Far East, for Macao could not accommodate a fraction of the shipping now using Hongkong Harbour, even were there water enough to allow a modern ocean vessel to enter; Macao Harbour is small, and no vessel drawing more than 14 feet can enter at any state of the tide.

In August, 1839, the Canton authorities, emboldened no doubt by the successful issue of their anti-British action in March, threatened to carry the matter still further, and to make an attack in force upon Macao, with a view to the expulsion thence of the British. As it was felt that, being virtually undefended, Macao was in no condition to repulse such an attack, and that Portugal, not being a party to the quarrel, it was not right or politic to involve her, the British community headed by Captain Elliot and his staff, left Macao for Hongkong, leaving behind only a few sick.

On arrival it was found that no food was obtainable, a boycott being maintained by three war junks anchored off the Kowloon Peninsula; and it was reported that all sources of water supply were poisoned. The natives, however, being perfectly willing, even anxious, to furnish supplies, the war junks were attacked and driven away, and the boycott put a stop to.

As there were no buildings of any kind on the north shores of the island, residence on shore was at first out of the question, and the shipping in the harbour afforded an asylum for the whole community. A few buildings shortly appeared, principally of the matshed type, but nothing of a permanent character was attempted, in view of the great uncertainty prevailing as to the future of the island.

Shortly after this, the activity on the part of the Chinese having abated, the Commissioner and staff, together with many of the merchants with their families returned to Macao, whence Captain Elliot continued his opposition to the harbour of Hongkong, and in October, 1839, in spite of vigorous protests from eighty-six British vessels then anchored there, and the representatives of twenty mercantile firms, eleven insurance companies, and Lloyds agent, he ordered all the shipping to leave and to repair to Tongku, an island off the entrance to Deep Bay, in the mouth of the Canton River. And Hongkong was evacuated.

The following year, 1840, an expeditionary force arrived from home and Hongkong was once more occupied, this time for good, though it did not become a British possession, even nominally, until 1841, and not actually a British Colony before 1843.

As we have seen, the shipping interest was quick to realise the value and importance of the harbour, though the authorities held different views. However, in January, 1841, Lieutenant William Pedder R.N., was appointed Harbour Master and Marine Magistrate. This officer had many difficulties to contend with at first. His authority was very limited and his staff of the smallest, and he appears to have been dependent, for transport purposes, upon native boats, captured from the Chinese.

Harbour Office.—His office was, originally, as were all Government offices, on board a ship in the harbour. I consider it very probable, though there are no records to show it, that a temporary harbour office was erected on shore very early in the history of the Colony; certainly there are indications that there was such a building in 1841, but its nature and site are unknown. In 1843 it appears that a room in Mr. Pedder's house, built at his own expense on the hill named after him, was used as a harbour office. Later, about 1845, a brick building was erected on the site of the present City Hall, and this was occupied by the harbour department until 1866. In that year a permanent building of brick and stone, erected upon reclaimed ground some 1,400 yards to the westward of the old office, was opened. This collapsed in 1873, and the staff of the office took up their quarters in a temporary wooden erection close to the Sailors' Home, another 1,300 yards west, until the office was rebuilt and re-occupied in 1874. There the work continued to be done until 1906, under difficulties, in later years, owing to want of room—for the staff had increased with the work to be done, though not in the same proportion; in insanitary surroundings—for the building had become old and decayed, and was built in on every side with lofty native tenement houses; and lack of a view of the harbour—for a new reclamation had been made in front of it, and was built upon—a fine new market directly in front effectually blocking out all sight of the harbour. In July, 1906, the present office, commenced in 1901, was completed and opened. This building is situated 350 yards to the eastward of the old office, fronting on the harbour, and is in every way satisfactory, being lofty, commodious, excellently arranged, and conveniently placed.

Chinese Brick Junk.
Chinese Cargo Boat.Chinese Coolie Boat.
Chinese Trading Junk.

Harbour Masters.—Lieutenant William Pedder, the first Harbour Master, held the appointment until 1854, when he retired, and was succeeded by Captain T. W. Watkins, R.N. This officer died in 1858, and was succeeded by Mr. A. L. Inglis, who received the additional appointment of Emigration Officer during the same year, and in 1859 was appointed Principal Officer of Customs, a title still held by the harbour master, though Hongkong is, and always has been, a free port. The object in giving him the appointment would appear to be that he may have control of the Mercantile Marine Office under the Board of Trade. Mr. Inglis held the post until 1861, when Mr. Henry George Thomsett, Navigating Lieutenant, R.N., became Harbour Master, Marine Magistrate, and Emigration and Customs Officer. In 1867 he became Superintendent of the Government Gunpowder Depôt. In Captain Thomsett's time, which lasted from 1861 until 1888, many changes occurred. The shipping using the port increased from 1,300,000 to 6,400,000 tons. The staff of the department in 1861 consisted of the harbour master, one boarding officer, and three clerks, one of whom was in charge of the Mercantile Marine Office. Beyond these there were a few boatmen, and the signalman at the Peak Signal Station, which was opened in that year. In 1888 the staff comprised the harbour master, assistant harbour master, two boarding officers, two junk inspectors, five clerks, one shroff, one Chinese and one Indian interpreter, two Chinese writers, the Peak signalman, and officer in charge of the Government Gunpowder Depôt, besides boatmen, &c. In 1861 all the work of the department afloat was done in pulling boats. In 1888 there were four steam launches belonging to the department.

The following are some of the more important events of this period:—

In 1862 there was a strike of cargo-boat men to protest against registration which an enactment of that year made compulsory. In 1863 the Sailors' Home was opened. This establishment was started by the leading mercantile firms in the Colony, viz.: Messrs. Jardine, Matheson & Co.; Gibb, Livingston & Co.; Dent & Co.; Russel & Co.; Fletcher & Co.; Gilman & Co.; Augustine Heard & Co.; The Peninsular and Oriental Steam Navigation Company; Messrs. John Burd & Co.; Holliday, Wise & Co.; David Sassoon & Co.; Smith, Kennedy & Co.; Birley & Co., and others. These firms and certain individuals subscribed to erect the building, the land was given by Messrs. Jardine, Matheson, and the Government, though declining to subscribe, reduced the Crown rent payable, to a nominal sum. This establishment had certain ups and downs to begin with, but is now on a firm basis, pays its own way, and has been largely patronised by both officers and men of the mercantile marine. Owing to the gradual falling off, indeed, almost elimination, of the sailing-ship trade, and to the fact that few European seamen are discharged here from steamers, the number of men stopping at the home has greatly diminished of late years, but officers have increased in numbers. The home is well managed, comfortable, and conveniently situated, and the charges are very moderate.

During this same year, the Messageries Maritimes Company's steamers began to call at Hongkong, carrying mails, and a regular steam service was also started with British North Borneo. The Peninsular and Oriental Steam Navigation Company had been calling fortnightly with mails since 1845.

In 1865 the Hongkong, Canton, and Macao Steamboat Company was formed, and steamers started running. In 1866 the Hongkong and Whampoa Dock Company commenced business. These two companies, among the first large local enterprises, are still among the most important in the Colony.

In 1867 the Canton authorities instituted what was known as the "blockade" of Hongkong. Chinese cruisers patrolled all the neighbouring waters, levying taxes upon all junks, &c., with the object of destroying the trade of the port. This continued until 1886. As will be seen later, the blockade, though an inconvenience, did not affect the trade to any appreciable extent, as the shipping increased, during its operation, from 2,500,000 to 6,500,000 tons.

In 1869 the opening of the Suez Canal had the effect of sending increasing numbers of vessels to the Far East, and greatly contributed to the future prosperity of the Colony. In 1871 the Hongkong and Kowloon Wharf
and Godown Company was formed, and still continues to be the leading firm in that line of business.

In 1874 an Ordinance was passed to regulate emigration from the Colony. This business is a most flourishing one, and brings in quite a respectable income to the Government. Last year (1907) 105,967 emigrants left the Colony, each paying 25 cents (about 6d.) for medical examination.

In 1875 the first lighthouse in the Colony was lit and light dues were first imposed. This subject is treated of later.

In 1879 the first Merchant Shipping Consolidation Ordinance was passed. Previous to this there had been many little Acts passed dealing with separate details, now these were all consolidated in one measure, with additions and alterations. There were further Ordinances passed in 1891 and 1899 for the same purpose. The latter did not come into force until 1903.

In 1883 the Observatory at Kowloon was opened, and in the following year the time ball, dropped at 1 p.m. local time, was instituted.

In 1884 the cargo-boat men again struck work in consequence of certain of their number having been fined for refusing to work for French ships. At the time France was at war with China, and pressure had been brought to bear from Canton in order to establish a boycott in the Colony.

In 1888 Captain Thomsett retired, and his place was taken by Commander Robert Murray Rumsey, R.N., who held the several appointments until 1903. During his regime many important events occurred, the principal among them being the passing of 1889 Emigration Ordinance. This measure, still in force, was intended to place emigration upon a more satisfactory basis, but it is so involved that it is difficult to say what it means. Certain amendments enacted from time to time have introduced new details, but have failed to render the measure clearer or more coherent.

In 1894–95 the China-Japan War affected the Colony slightly.

In 1895 a signal station was erected on Blackhead's Hill, above Chin sal chui Point, and in 1900 another was built upon the summit of Green Island.

The acquisition of the New Territories in 1898 has necessitated the establishment of seven additional branch harbour stations, of which there are now eleven in all, viz., at Aberdeen, Stanley, and Shaukiwan, on the Island of Hongkong; Hunghom and Sam Shui Po, on the Kowloon Peninsula; Taipo, Long Ket, Sai Kung, and Deep Bay, in the New Territories on mainland; and at Tai O on Lantau Island, and at Cheung Chau, on the island of the same name in the New Territories.

During Captain Rumsey's time the following titles, with corresponding duties, devolved upon the Harbour Master:—Collector of Light Dues, Registrar of Shipping, Superintendent of Imports and Exports (Opium), and Agent for the Commercial Intelligence Department of the Board of Trade.

During this period also the tonnage of the shipping entering the harbour increased from 6,500,000 to 10.750,000 tons.

In January, 1904, Captain Rumsey retired. He was succeeded by Captain Lionel Aubrey Walter Barnes-Lawrence, R.N., who, in February, arrived from Gibraltar, where he had held the post of Captain of the Port. During his tenure of office the work of the department was greatly increased by the Russo-Japanese War. Enforcement of neutrality devolved principally upon the Harbour Department, while the search for contraband of war, in the absence of any Customs staff, rendered the work onerous. Considerable trouble was also experienced with European crews of vessels bound for the seat of war, many of them refusing to proceed any further in their ships, in circumstances which were held to be unwarranted by the facts. In one or two of these cases, during the later stages of the war, the Courts at home have since decided that the men were justified in their refusal.

During the war, in spite of the complete absence from the harbour of ships belonging to the belligerents, the shipping returns showed no decrease. This was due to the enormous influx of tramp steamers of many nationalities, principally British, which arrived to take up the Japanese trade in these waters.

In consequence of the Brussels Sugar Convention of 1903 further duties devolved upon the department in the following year, the Harbour Master becoming "Fiscal Authority," in order to issue certificates of origin of sugar exported from the Colony.

In 1904, also, an Ordinance was passed providing for the examination and licensing of pilots. Previous to this, there were a certain number of Chinese who called themselves pilots, but had no certificates or anything else to show that they were in any way qualified for the work, nor had they any authority to charge for their services. As a matter of fact, I believe they made no charge as a rule, so long as the custom of the ship brought in was given to the particular "Compradore" in whose employment the pilot was. Ten Europeans and 13 Chinese passed the necessary examination and were given certificates, and a scale of charges was laid down.

In 1905 the much-needed improvements of the Colony's lighthouse service were commenced by the erection of the new light at Green Island.

In July, 1906, the staff moved into the new Harbour Offices. In September a disastrous typhoon struck the Colony, which it found all unprepared to meet it. Among the many victims was Captain Barnes-Lawrence, who died some days later from the effects of exposure. He may well be said to have perished at his post. In the following month the British river-steamer Hankow was burnt alongside her wharf, nearly in front of the Harbour Office, and many Chinese were burnt or drowned.

The year 1907 saw the commencement of the railway to Canton, a work which those who favour it appear to think will bring new prosperity to the Colony. As the Colony depends entirely upon shipping for its existence, I do not feel so hopeful. The telegraph cable ground has been moved further east, thus providing more room in the harbour, improved typhoon signals have been instituted, and further improvements have been made in the lighting of the waters of the Colony.

Typhoons.—From time to time the Colony has been visited by these most destructive storms, and has suffered greatly by them. Few years pass without one or more making a near approach to us, with the result that the work of loading and unloading cargo is totally suspended for a time, the lighters and cargo-boats making for shelter at the first indication of danger. Fortunately, the centres of the storms usually succeed in passing well clear of us, but on fifteen occasions since the British occupation it has passed, if not actually over the island, very close to it. The following is a list of these fifteen storms, with the amount of damage done by them:—

July 21–22, 1841.—Considerable damage.

July 25–26, 1841.—Considerable damage.

August 31 to September 1, 1848.—Considerable damage.

August 8, 1867.—Praya wall destroyed. Several large vessels and many junks lost, with considerable loss of life.

September 26, 1870.—Great loss of life and property.

September 2, 1871.—Damage to shipping and houses.

September 22–23, 1874.—Thirty-five European ships and two thousand lives lost in six hours, and over 5,000,000 dollars' worth of damage done to property.

October 14, 1881.—Damage to small craft.

May 29–30, 1889.—Great storm, in which 33·11 inches of rain fell (16·16 inches in seven hours). The principal thoroughfares on the low level were flooded, and much damage was done to property.

October 5, 1894.—Damage in the harbour. Gap Rock Lighthouse lantern (133 feet above sea) badly damaged. The lantern glasses and lenses were broken by water, and the lighthouse and quarters flooded.

July 29, 1896.—Considerable damage to shipping and property.

November 9, 1900.—H.M.S. Sandpiper, dredger Canton River, ten steam launches, over one hundred junks, and innumerable small boats sunk or destroyed, and over three hundred lives lost in three hours.

September 18, 1906.—One hundred and forty-one European vessels foundered or badly damaged, 2,413 Chinese craft lost, 15 Europeans (including Anglican Bishop and Harbour Master) and some ten thousand Chinese lost their lives in about an hour and a half.

September 28, 1906.—Gap Rock Lighthouse considerably damaged. One Japanese steamer (damaged in typhoon of 18th) foundered in harbour, several junks sunk, and some lives lost.

September 13–14, 1907.—Further damage to Gap Rock Lighthouse, a few small craft damaged in harbour, and three lives lost.

In consequence of the many reclamations that have been made in the harbour, all the little shallow nooks and corners, and little bays, where boats could take shelter have gradually disappeared. In 1883, in order to afford an artificial shelter for these craft, a breakwater, 1,400 feet long was built in Causeway Bay, enclosing an area of some 100 acres. This shelter is now insufficient, the number of craft requiring shelter having greatly increased while the available area has been greatly diminished by silting up, and by further reclamations. The Causeway Bay shelter, also, is in the wrong place, being situated near the eastern limit of the harbour. As the wind in the initial stages of a typhoon almost invariably blows from the eastward, the boats to the westward find it very difficult to make their way to shelter to windward. A new shelter is contemplated, but I fear the proposed site will be no improvement.

Reclamations.—Very early in the history of Hongkong as a British possession there were reclamations of parts of the harbour, and these have steadily increased in number and size until a decided alteration has been made in the shape and size of the harbour, as the published series of charts shows. The
View of the Docks at Kowloon.Shipbuilding Yard.
"Empress of Japan" in Dock.H.M.S. "Powerful" in Dock No. 1.
following is a list of the several dates of reclamations:—
1851. First Praya Reclamation scheme partly carried out.
1857. First Praya Reclamation scheme continued.
1864. Shaukiwan Road, involving Reclamation, laid out.
1867. 500 feet of sea-wall built at Kowloon.
1868. 2,700 feet of sea-wall built on Victoria side, from Wilmer Street to Bonham Strand.
1873. Eastern Praya partly constructed.
1884. 23 acres reclaimed at Causeway Bay.
1886. 22 acres reclaimed at Kennedy town.
1889. Second Praya Reclamation Bill passed.
1890. Duke of Connaught laid the foundation stone.
1891. 8½ acres reclaimed at Kennedy town.
1900. Naval Yard Reclamation commenced.
1904. Praya Reclamation completed.

The Extent of the Harbour.—The harbour limits are, on the west, a line drawn from the west point of the island of Hongkong to the west point of Green Island, thence to the west point of Stonecutter's Island, and along the north shores of that island to the east point, and thence across to the harbour-master's station at Sam Shui Po; and, on the east, a line drawn from North Point to Kowloon City Pier. The harbour comprises 7·34 nautical square miles at low water, and of this area 3·5 square miles have a depth of over 4½ fathoms. The greatest depth is 14 fathoms. The anchorage varies from 5 to 9 fathoms.

Lighthouses.—In 1875 the first lighthouses in the Colony were established. A first-order fixed light on Cape D'Aguilar, the south-eastern point of the island, was first lit on April 16th, and a fourth-order fixed light, with red sector, on Green Island was erected on July 1st in that year. These were followed by a sixth-order fixed light, with red sectors, on Cape Collinson. the eastern point of the island, on March 1, 1876.

These three lights remained the only ones in the vicinity until 1892, with the exception of a small, fixed red light on a rock in the Chung Chau Channel, six miles SW. of Green Island. This was installed and maintained by the Chinese Imperial Maritime Customs. In 1892 a first-order revolving light was exhibited on Gap Rock, in Chinese territory, 30 miles south of the island. The negotiations with the Chinese Government in connection with this light were most troublesome. It was originally proposed to place it on the Great Ladrone, 14 miles WNW. of its present position, but the Chinese would not hear of it. Other islands were suggested, but the only one that they would consent to allot was Gap Rock, a most unsuitable spot, being a tiny bare rock, with not even a blade of grass on it, over which the sea sweeps in bad weather. On three occasions the lantern has been seriously damaged by the sea, and the precious store of fresh water frequently becomes contaminated with salt. Undoubtedly Great Ladrone is the place for the light, and I cannot help thinking that it will eventually go there, if it is not first swept into the sea.

In 1893 the Chinese Government opened a lighthouse on Waglan Island, five and a half miles SSE. from Cape Collinson, and three miles SE. by E. from Cape D'Aguilar. This is a first-order double flashing light. In consequence of this light being lit Cape D'Aguilar light became superfluous, and was discontinued in 1896.

As soon as this happened it was suggested by the Harbour Master that, having this first-order light in our hands, we should use it to improve our lighting by putting it on Green Island to replace the fourth-order light, while the latter should replace the sixth-order light at Cape Collinson. Nothing, however, was done.

In 1900 Waglan was taken over by the Hongkong Government, together with the light. I suggested that as we were controlling a lighthouse (Gap Rock) in Chinese territory, and the Chinese Government was maintaining one (Waglan) in British territory, it would be a good idea to end this anomaly, which had existed for two years, by exchanging stations. The Chinese Government, however, declined to take over Gap Rock.

In 1905 the first-order light from Cape D'Aguilar was at last exhibited from a new tower on Green Island. The light was fitted with an occulting apparatus, which renders it distinctive. In the same year a sixth-order red fixed light was exhibited on Mawan Island, five miles NW. of Green Island.

In 1907 the old Green Island light (fourth-order) was placed on the old tower at Cape Collinson, and lit on October 1st, with an occulting apparatus to render it distinctive. The sixth-order light from Cape Collinson will shortly be exhibited, with an occulter, from the summit of the hill at Chinsalchin Point, on the Kowloon Peninsula.

In addition to the above there are two small red lights shown in the eastern entrance to the harbour, and two automatic oil-lit buoys, with red lights, to mark the western end of the central fairway through the harbour.

Shipping.—The first year in which any record of shipping entering the harbour was kept was 1844. In that year 538 ships, aggregating 189,257 tons, entered. These ships averaged 352 tons each, and were, almost without exception, sailing ships. In the following year the Peninsular and Oriental Company started a monthly service in steamers, which carried the mails between London and Hongkong in forty-eight days, mails and passengers being conveyed between Alexandria and Suez by the Mahmondieh Canal, the Nile, and the desert, until the Canal was opened in 1871.

The shipping steadily increased, with occasional pauses, and even retrograde movements in 1854, 1857, 1874, 1879, 1884, 1889, 1894, 1896 and 1906, until, in 1907, the arrivals reached the grand total of 8,249 vessels of 10,156,396 tons net register. This excludes all junks and all vessels engaged in local trade. In 1844, therefore, the daily average entry was something under one ship. Last year it amounted to rather more than 22 ships, of an average tonnage of 1,231 tons, or, if river steamers are eliminated (for there were none in 1844), the average tonnage of ships entering in 1907 was 1,785 tons.

The total tonnage of shipping, including junks and steam launches (but excluding lighters, cargo boats, passenger boats, water boats, &c., and fishing craft of all kinds), entered and cleared in the Colony during 1907, amounted to 507,634 vessels of 36,028,310 tons, made up as shown in the following table:—

No. Tonnage.
British ocean-going ships 3,756 7,216,169
Foreign ocean-going ships 4,621 7,720,875
British river steamers 6,828 4,630,364
Foreign river steamers 1,310 743,992
Steamships under 60 tons 1,581 70,021
Junks 29,564 2,651,470
Total foreign trade 47,660 23,032,891
Steamships under 60 tons, local trade 419,202 11,216,532
Junks in local trade 40,772 1,778,887
Total 507,634 36,028,310

This forms a record for Hongkong and exceeds that of any port in the world. {dhr}} Trade.—As Hongkong is a free port, except for the small charges made for light dues, there is no Customs staff, and it is impossible to say what the value of the imports and exports amounts to. Even the quantities cannot be estimated with any approximation to accuracy in the case of any cargo except opium and sugar.

The cargo imported in European-constructed vessels, however, was returned as follows in 1905, 1906, and 1907:—

Articles. 1905. 1906. 1907.
Tons. Tons. Tons.
Beans 2,113 3,360
Coal 1,083,987 971,365 1,004,867
Cotton Yarn and Cotton 32,949 41,871 25,461
Flour 54,508 79,635 146,722
Hemp 26,784 23,356 30,479
Kerosine (bulk) 43,411 43,932 43,880
Kerosine (case) 74,506 28,937 36,729
Liquid Fuel 850 5,850 3,272
Lead 800
Opium 2,983 3,286 2,800
Rattan 3,430 12,531 9,520
Rice 566,171 624,369 956,060
Sandalwood 3,386 2,561 6,406
Sulphur 100 510
Sugar 311,787 482,178
Wheat 20,666
Timber 66,324 52,242 84,854
General 1,594,862 1,653,604 1,701,772
No. 3 Dock and Machine Shops.
Another View of Machine Shops.
Centre Bay of Machine Shops.
East Bay of Machine Shops.
The total import cargo for 1907 amounted to 5,033,000 tons, including that carried in local trade vessels. The exports amounted to 3,254,000 tons. Some 3,396,000 tons also passed through without breaking bulk. The total amount of bunker coal shipped here during the year was 758,497 tons. As to opium, what is supposed to be an accurate record of all opium and products of opium arriving in, and exported from, the Colony is kept, and may be taken as substantially accurate, for the excise work in this particular commodity is done by employes of the opium farmer, who pays a large annual fee to the Government for the monopoly of the trade. To check him, however, the imports and Exports Office keep a record of where

each chest of opium in the Colony is stored, and surprise visits are paid to all opium warehouses by the Harbour Master, in his capacity as Superintendent of Imports and Exports, to see that the stock corresponds with the record. The quantity of raw opium of all kinds imported during the year 1907 was 40,842½ chests, as against 47,566½ chests in 1906. The exports were 42,702 chests, against 47,575½ chests in 1906. There are six different kinds of opium dealt with in the Colony, and the above totals are made up as follows : —

Description. Value for Chest Imports. Value. Exports. Value. Malwa Patna Benares Persian Turkish Chinese $ ,000 ,025 1,000

600 700 Chests. ,II9i ,220 ,232 ,217

$ ,119.500 ,800,500 ,232,000 ,991,300 ,400 ,000 Chests, ,700 ,404 ,621 ,846

,700,000 22,964,100 10,621,000 ,461,400 ,000 74,200 Total ,842} ,180,700 ,702 $42,835,700

The reduction is undoubtedly due to the Anti-Opium Crusade in China. In addition to this, 8,938 chests of opium of various kinds passed through the harbour without being landed. The products of opium dealt with during the year amounted to : — Exports, Morphia Opium Skin Compounds of Opium lbs. ,469 ,958 .454 As to sugar, the figures can claim to be substantially correct for imports, but the exports cannot be so easily determined, for the following reason. All sugar arriving in the Colony has to be covered by a certificate of origin, which is delivered to the Superintendent of Imports and Exports. It sometimes happens that sugar arrives without such a certificate. Certain procedure is adopted in such cases in order to prevent the export of the sugar concerned until the certificate arrives. In the case of exports, only such sugar as is being exported to a port belonging to a signatory of the Brussels Convention is reported, as certificates of origin, issued here, are not required in other ports. The exports of sugar are, therefore, "lumped" with the other items. Imports of sugar during 1907 amounted to 292,527½ tons, a falling off of nearly 200,000 tons as compared with the previous year.

The only other forms of trade with which we interfere are warlike stores and dangerous goods. The former on arrival are placed under the supervision of the police, and cannot be exported without a special export permit from the Government. The latter are dealt with under somewhat stringent regulations, and there are two dangerous goods anchorages for the accommodation of ships with such goods on board. Petroleum and products of petroleum are stored in various out-of-the-way parts of the Colony, while the Government maintains a magazine, called the Government Gunpowder Depot, in which all explosives have to be stored.

All other kinds of goods imported and exported come and go without let or hindrance. The masters of vessels report on arrival, and before departure, the approximate quantity of cargo carried, and, to a certain extent, its nature. But the returns cannot be regarded as in any way even an approximation of the truth, and the value of the goods I cannot attempt to estimate. The Annual Reports of the Harbour Master give very exhaustive details of the origin and destination of the cargoes, as of the shipping using the port, and many other matters of interest.

The figures collected for 1907 give the following totals : —

Imports 5,032,689 tons.
Exports 3,254,308 „
Transit cargo {i.e., carried on in the same ship) 3,395,888 „
Bunker coal shipped ... 758,497 „

Passenger Trade. — This is a very large item, and runs into big figures, the totals being: arrivals, 6,057,869 ; departures, 5,299,743. The majority of this traffic, however, is local between places within the Colonial waters. The foreign passenger traffic shows respectable figures, viz., arrivals, 1,395,191, and departures, 1,306,256. To the latter must be added —

Emigration. — Under this heading there were 105,967 Asiatic (principally Chinese) deck passengers sent to various parts of the world during 1907. The majority of these went to the Straits Settlements, where they are employed in mining, on rubber and other plantations, and in various trades. Others went to Canada, the United States, Chile, and the Eastern Archipelago. The thousands of Chinese who went to the Transvaal a few years ago are now returning, gradually, in a state of unusual affluence, after having experienced such treatment in South Africa as to lead them to express great regret at leaving their so-called "slavery" for their native "freedom" {i.e., poverty, bamboo, and tyranny).

THE HARBOUR MASTER.— A biographical sketch of Commander Basil Taylor, R.N., appears under the heading "Executive and Legislative Councils," on the latter of which he has a seat in the absence from the Colony of the Captain Superintendent of Police.


The history of the Hongkong and Whampoa Dock Company, Limited, is one of the most romantic in the industrial annals of the Colony, covering as it does a period of forty-four years, and interwoven as it is with the story of the development and progress of British influence in China. In the days of sailing vessels there were mud docks at Whampoa, in the Canton River, owned by Chinese, but the advent of the Peninsular and Oriental steamers and the fast vessels owned by the great opium houses necessitated a change. Not caring to entrust the docking and repair of their vessels to the Chinese without European supervision, the Peninsular and Oriental Company appointed Mr. John Couper, an Aberdonian of remarkable foresight, to act as their representative in Whampoa and to look after their vessels when in dock. Speedily realising the possibilities of the future, Mr. Couper leased the docks from their Chinese owners, and prospering exceedingly, was enabled to build a new dock, to which he gave his own name. In 1856, however, as one of the results of the trouble arising out of the Arrow affair, the Couper Dock was more or less destroyed by Chinese troops, and the fate of the enterprising Scotchman himself, who was kidnapped by the mob, was never known. When peace was concluded Mr. Couper's son, who was indemnified to the amount of $120,000, took prompt steps to rebuild the dock, and eventually sold it to what has since become the Hongkong and Whampoa Dock Company.

In the meantime Mr. John Lamont, another Scotchman, had built a dock on the south side of the island, at Aberdeen, and, finding it a success and noting the growing importance of Hongkong as a shipping and commercial centre, he began the construction of the Hope Dock, of much larger dimensions. Mr. Lamont was joined by Mr. David Gillies, but when the Hope Dock was nearing completion the whole of the Aberdeen enterprise was absorbed by the Hongkong and Whampoa Company, Mr. Lamont retiring and Mr. Gillies remaining in the service of the new owners.

The Company was formed in 1863 with a capital of $240,000, the first acquisition being made in that year ; the Lamont and Hope Docks were purchased in 1865 ; and two years later the capital was increased to $750,000. The original founders were Mr. James Whittal, head of the firm of Messrs. Jardine, Matheson & Co. ; Mr. (now Sir) Thomas Sutherland, then local agent of the Peninsular and Oriental Company ; and
The Offices.
The Star Ferry.
Main Gate.
View of Wharf.
Mr. Douglas Lapraik, head of the shipping company of that name. The Whampoa establishment was extended by the construction of a large dock for the repair of the mail steamers of the Peninsular and Oriental and Messageries Maritimes Companies; and, in

the year following the opening of the Suez Canal, the capital was raised to $1,000,000, to enable the Company to acquire the Union Docks Company's property. In about 1875 the Whampoa property as then existing was made over to the Chinese Government for the sum of $80,000 upon condition that only upon ships under the Chinese flag should repairs be executed. The Company was at that time passing through a critical period, owing in part to mismanagement, and largely to the competition offered by two ships owned by Captain Sands, and by the Cosmopolitan Dock Company. Mr. Gillies, who had left the Company's service for two or three years, was asked to return and undertake the secretarial management of the concern. The Sands' ships and the Cosmopolitan Dock were absorbed, and then Mr. Gillies initiated the vast development of new docks and workshops upon which the more recent prosperity of the Company has been based.

The size of steamships on the Far Eastern runs, and of the men-of-war on the China station, steadily increased, and even larger vessels were contemplated. To meet the growing requirements a new dock, the No. 1, or Admiralty Dock, was built at Kowloon. It cost over $1,000,000, towards which the British Government granted £25,000, in consideration of the right of priority of entrance for a period of twenty years — a privilege which expires in 1908. Not only did this fine dock establish practically for all time the supremacy of the Company's docks in Chinese waters, but, indirectly, its existence has benefited the Colony by making possible the employment on Eastern trade routes of vessels of the large capacity with which we are familiar at the present day.

Mr. Gillies retired in 1901, after twenty-six years' service with the Company, and was succeeded by Mr. W. Dixon, a man of considerable ability. The present chief manager is Mr. R. Mitchell, who has been with the Company for many years. He possesses a thorough practical knowledge of the work, and has had the advantage of a scientific training. As manager of the Kowloon establishment he proved so valuable that in 1907 he was given the position which he now fills.

Reference having been made to the growth of the Company, a survey of the properties controlled by it may now be given. There are first the following docks and slipways:— Length on Keel Breadth Depth over sni at Rise of Tide. Name of Dock or Slip. of Ordinary Blocks. Entrance. tIS Springs Neaps. KOWLOON. feet. ft. in. (■86 0, ft. in. ft. in. feet. No. I Dock, Kowloon

top 1


bottom '

No. 2 Dock, Kowhxm 


No, 3 Dock, Kowltxtn 


. — 

Patent Slip, No. 1, Kowloon

, — 

Patent Slip, No. 2, Kowloon

TAI-KOK-TSUI. Cosmopolitan Dock...


— ABERDEEN. Hope Dock Lamont Dock —

The docks are of granite, and are fitted with every appliance in the way of caissons, powerful centrifugal pumps, &c., which enable them to be pumped out in three hours. The extensive workshops at the Kowloon, Cosmopolitan, and Aberdeen Docks are fitted with every facility and appliance necessary for the repair of ships and steam machinery. The engineers' shops are supplied with a large plant of the latest types of tools in the way of planing, milling, and screwing machines, lathes, electric cranes, &c., and are capable of executing the largest class of work with despatch. Attached lo the shipwrights' department is a steam saw-mill, with circular band, and vertical saws, while a complete plant of machinery of the most modern and improved type enables all classes of woodwork to be underlaken. The blacksmiths' shops are furnished with powerful steam hammers, cranes, and other appliances requisite to the forging of stern posts and crank and straight shafting of the largest size. At two of the establishments are powerful lifting shears, with steam purchase, built on solid granite sea-walls, alongside which vessels of 24 feet draught can lie. The shears at Kowloon are capable of lifting 70 tons. The Company is prepared to tender for the construction of new vessels, the shipyard being fully equipped with modern plant, including hydraulic flanging and bending machines, electrically-driven rolls, punching, shearing, angle-bevelling, joggling, and planing machines, capable of dealing with the heaviest class of work. Special facilities are provided in the boiler-makers' department, including powerful punching, shearing, hydraulic riveting, and other machines; whilst in the foundry are cupolas capable of casting up to 100 tons. An extensive galvanizing plant has been installed at the Kowloon establishment. In addition, the Company carries a heavy stock of well-selected material and fittings required in shipbuilding, engine-room outfits, furnishings, and ships' stores — altogether of the value of about $2,000,000. The business of the Company is carried on by a board of directors and a chief manager and secretary, with part of the clerical stiiff, in the head office. Queen's Buildings. At the Kowloon, Cosmopolitan, and Aberdeen establishments there is a European staff of eighty, comprising yard managers, draughtsmen, clerks, engineers, shipbuilders, boiler-makers, blacksmiths, carpenters, coppersmiths, and founders, the majority of whom are selected by the Company's agents in England.

The number of Chinese varies considerably during the summer and winter months of the year, from an average of 2,500 to as many as 4,500 men in the busy season from October to March.

MR. JAMES W. GRAHAM, a member of the Institute of Naval Architects, is the acting manager of the Kowloon Dock, owned by the Hongkong and Whampoa Dock Company. His experience has been considerable, as he was for eleven years superintendent, and had previously held several important positions in the leading yards of the North of England. While he has been engaged with the Company they have built some very large ships, such as the s.s. Looii/i Woo, now at Shanghai, and the Kiiichan, a fine steamer, owned by the Hongkong, Canton and Macao Steamship Company, which is at present running be- tween Hongkong and Canton.

MR. THOMAS NEAVE, who for the last three years has held the position of superintendent engineer of the Hongkong and Whampoa Docks at Kowloon, has been with the Company for over eight years. A native of Dundee, Scotland, he served his apprenticeship as an engineer with Messrs. John Smith, of Newcastle-on-Tyne, an old-established firm of general engineers and millwrights. Afterwards he was engaged with Messrs. Palmer & Co., engineers and shipbuilders at Jarrow-on-Tyne, England, for about ten years as assistant foreman in their outside engineering department. He was mostly employed on the construction of battleships, cruisers, and torpedo destroyers for the British Government. He had a large experience with the 30-knot class of destroyers in their fitting-out trials, and was connected with all the experimental trials of Mr. Heed's patent water-tube boiler, which was so successful in these vessels. But, although he has had this long and varied training, Mr. Neave finds that the experience to be obtained by working at the Whampoa Dock with its varied shipping is quite exceptional.

MR. JAMES GUY, who is in charge of the machine and erecting shops of the Hongkong and Whampoa Dock Company, at Kowloon, is an engineer with over twenty-seven years' experience afloat and ashore. He has been in the service of the present Company for the last eight years, during which time he has been connected with the building of several large ships, including the Long Woo, which was constiucted on the Yarrow Shlick Tweedle principle, and is a great success. She is at present trading on the Yangtsze.


Twenty-three years have passed since the value of Kowloon as a site for storage godowns became evident to Sir Paul Chafer and Mr. Kerfoot Hughes, the founders of the Hongkong and Kowloon Wharf and Godown Company, Ltd., and the wisdom of their choice, already amply vindicated, will be still more fully demonstrated when the Kowloon-Canton Railway, to which the Company will

have a special siding, is completed. Hut it was not the advantages offered by Kowloon for the establishment of a depot of this class which, in the first instance, gave promise of success to the Wharf Company, but rather the intolerable exactions of the Chinese

The Offices.
The "Delhi."
The Staff.
The "Peshawar"
The "Nore."
coolie hongs and boat people, and the delays occasioned to European traders by their antiquated methods of handling cargo. Often seven or eight days were wasted through these methods, and the advent of a European-managed concern was welcomed by the community as a means of escape from such vexations. Faced with competition, the Chinese changed their tactics, and an endless struggle ensued between the rival interests. The coolies, tallymen, and boat people would not work so well for the Company as they worked for their own countrymen; and when, as their business extended, the Company needed additional lighters, the Chinese, without reason or justification, gradually raised their charges from $4 a load to $15, and the Company were obliged to build their own fleet of lighters. Similarly the coolie hongs combined to raise the price of labour; but again their purpose was defeated, for the Company, compelled to import its own labour from Swatow, has continued the practice ever since. The experience of the Company has shown clearly that so far as Hongkong is concerned the much-vaunted cheap Chinese labour has no existence when it comes to the Europeans' demand, and that, whilst there are millions within easy reach of Hongkong who would be willing to work, labour is scarce on account of the guilds. There is practically no free labour in the Colony, for no labourer or mechanic coming to Hongkong on his own account, without the introduction of one of these guilds, would be likely to secure employment. It pays the European to employ better supervised, if perhaps more expensive, labour than is obtainable from the ranks of the local coolie. Another enemy of the Company has been the Chinese compradore, a survival of the early days when the only persons who could communicate with the ships in a foreign language were the bumboat people—the class from which the modern compradore originally sprang. In the majority of instances the compradore is the real retail trader in Hongkong, the foreigner supplying capital and exercising limited supervision. And so it was with tally-clerks, but this question has now been practically solved by the Company. The system in vogue of training boys to become tally-clerks in the Company's own private school, which has an average attendance of forty, has shown the most encouraging results. The boys are engaged in godown work during the fore-part of the day, and attend school during the afternoon, instruction being given by two Chinese teachers from Queen's College. The Swatow coolies, specially trained for godown work, are housed on the premises. Altogether about fifteen hundred men are employed.

The premises of the Company could hardly be more perfectly situated for the purposes for which they are required, and it is largely owing to their development that the aspect of Kowloon has been so changed within the last twenty years. After the first few years, amalgamation with the Jardine Wharf was effected, and the Peninsular and Oriental Company's Wharf at West Point was purchased. This latter was afterwards sold, and only Jardine's godowns were allowed to remain, the object being to concentrate the whole of the business on the Kowloon side of the wafer. The next step in the progress of the Company was an extensive scheme of reclamation at West Point, and upon the property so acquired now stands a large portion of the existing premises in that part of the town used exclusively for Chinese business. The enterprise prospered as soon as the reluctance of some of the sea-captains and others to use the Kowloon wharves had been overcome, and improvements and enlargements succeeded each other until, at the present day, no other firm can offer such facilities in Hongkong. The wharves and piers range from 250 to 600 feet in length, and afford berths for seven ocean going vessels up to 30 feet draught. A water system of pure filtered water from the Government mains is laid on to each wharf, so that vessels alongside can obtain an ample supply under high pressure at all times. The buildings occupy the entire western side of the peninsula, and form one of the features of the harbour. The godowns, which have a storage capacity of nearly 500,000 tons, are arranged so as to give every possible facility for the handling of cargo. There are shearlegs for hoisting loads up to 25 tons, heavy-weight cranes, and trolley lines upon which cargo may be transported to any part of the premises. In the Company's own engineering shops many of the requisites, such as turntables, trucks, &c., formerly imported, are now made, and repairs of all kinds are carried out. The number of vessels wharfed averages from thirty to forty from all parts of the world each month. Constant dredging is maintained alongside the wharves to ensure accommodation for the steamers of larger draught now employed on the Far Eastern trade routes, the minimum depth at lowest spring tides being 30 feet. The Company has a fleet of 85 lighters, and 10 powerful launches for towing them. Some of these are provided with steam cranes for delivering cargo at riverain ports as far as Canton, and it is a point well worth noting by shippers at home that heavy or awkward cargo, including all kinds of railway material, can be loaded into the Company's lighters and taken direct to their destination. Many of the lighters are new, for in the great typhoon of 1906 nearly the whole of the original fleet was destroyed. The Company was, indeed, one of the greatest losers in the havoc wrought on that occasion, the total damage to their property running into many hundreds of thousands of dollars. The godowns were flooded, and severe damage was wrought to the wharves; but the Company met their losses in the right spirit, increased their capital to $3,000,000 (Mexican), and turned the experience to account by raising the floors of their premises well above the highest flood mark, and by rebuilding the wharves more substantially. The old truck lines were left at the former level to act as drains in the event of further floods.

Another extension was carried out, when further capital had been raised, by the acquisition of the whole of the Praya front, and the removal of the Star Ferry Wharf, by which greater facilities were obtained for handling goods. On the sea-wall there are now three new lines of truck rails, and one line for carrying several powerful travelling cranes, including a 10-ton crane of 40 feet radius for loading timber. Throughout the godowns every precaution is taken against fire, including a complete system of fire hydrants, connected with the Government mains, a powerful Shand & Mason steam engine, and electric alarms. Each godown, in addition, is provided with a portable hand-engine, fire-buckets, &c. For goods of a dangerous nature there is special storage accommodation.

The business of the Company is managed by the Hon. Mr. E. Osborne, the secretary, who has been connected with the Company since 1889, and has had an important share in its development. Mr. R. J. Macgowan, who has general charge of the indoor working staff, has been with the Company for seven years. Captain Brown has charge of the outdoor staff, whilst Mr. T. W. Robinson is the superintending engineer.


No other shipping company has a record of the same length of public service, combined with such a wide range of operations, as the Peninsular and Oriental Steam Navigation Company. Whether in point of tonnage (and that of the most costly description) or in the extent of its sphere of operations, the Company must be admitted to stand at the head of all similar enterprises. Like most commercial undertakings, the Company has now and then experienced serious reverses, and on more than one occasion its fortunes have been at a rather low ebb, but now, after nearly three-quarters of a century's work, it will hardly be denied that there stands to its credit a record of valuable service, performed in a spirit of enterprise, and fraught with advantage to the commerce of the Empire.

The Company was founded in 1837, although the steamers which it owned had actually been running to the Peninsula a year or two previous to that date, its first contract being a monthly service between Falmouth and Gibraltar. At that time it was known as the Peninsular Company, but in 1840 it became the Peninsular and Oriental Steam Navigation Company, incorporated by Royal Charter. Seventy years ago the annual trade of Great Britain with the East did not amount probably to more than £20,000,000. To-day it is almost equal to £250,000,000. To what extent the Company may have contributed towards the growth of this vast volume of commerce it is, of course, impossible to say, but when it is remembered that for upwards of thirty-three years the Company was almost the exclusive carrier by steam to India, China, and Australia, and that during that period the correspondence, the exchanges, the transport of bullion and of the more precious merchandise (to say nothing of the conveyance of passengers), depended entirely upon its fleet, it is evident that its influence in fostering this trade has been equal to, if not greater than, that of any other single agency in existence.

The shipbuilding operations of the Company during the last seventy years might be considered as typical of the development of the mercantile marine of Great Britain. The service commenced with two or three very small steamers, of which one, the William Fawcett, was of only 206 tons. Three of the four steamers that are being built at the present time are of 11,000 tons each, and the fleet to-day, including these, consists of ninety steamers, aggregating 422,260 tons. From these figures it is not difficult to realise how the Company has grown, and what an important place it holds in the shipping world to-day. The Government, recognising its stability and trustworthiness, have granted it additional powers from time to time by Royal Charters. The issued capital amounts to £2,320,000, the debenture stock to £1,800,000, and the unissued capital to £1,180,000. The last available report shows a fair result, from a financial point of view, of the previous half-year's work, and a dividend at the rate of 5 per cent. per annum on the preferred stock, and 7 per cent. per annum on the deferred stock, was declared in June, 1907.

Such, in brief and broad outline, is the general history of the Company. But turning more particularly to the trade in the Far East, which more nearly concerns the purpose of this sketch, it will be found that in Hongkong, as elsewhere, there has been a wonderful increase in the volume of trade done. The first Peninsular and Oriental steamer to leave Hongkong was the Lady Mary Wood. She sailed on September 1, 1845. The Company, however, had been established in the Colony previously, for by this date they owned their own docks and wharves, and had private shops for the work of re-fitting their vessels. The Lady Mary Wood was a vessel of about 650 tons burden. Now there is a fortnightly mail service, a fortnightly intermediate service, and altogether about sixty sailings a year of the Company's boats from Hongkong alone. A comparison between the freight rates and passage-money then and now will also show what an immense advance has been made during recent years. In 1857 a first-class passage from Hongkong to Southampton cost six hundred dollars when the dollar was equivalent to 4s. 10d. or 5s.; now it costs about half that sum in sterling.

It is amusing to read, in the records, that tea and articles of bulk, but of small value, could be taken in limited quantities by special agreement when the ships had room at a rate of from £20 to £25 per ton of 40 cubic feet. Now numerous vessels leave the harbour each month with a carrying capacity of between nine and twelve thousand tons. Last year the Peninsular and Oriental Company booked nearly 2,000 passengers at Hongkong, landed about 80,000 tons of cargo, and shipped nearly 150,000 tons more.

In the early days the Company was known in the Colony as the "Tit-Hong," or Iron House. Their headquarters used to be where Jardine's wharf is now situated, and around the offices was a very handsome iron verandah. It is presumed that the name was derived from this ornamental structure, which now adorns a house on the Peak. These offices were sold and pulled down in about 1881, and the Company moved to the site of the present Central Market. In 1887, however, the ground was sold to the Government, and the Company then moved into its palatial premises at No. 22, Des Voeux Road.

The Hon. E. A. Hewett is the manager of the branch, and, as Hongkong is the headquarters of the Company for the Far East, he superintends and controls the whole of their trade from Penang to Yokohama. He has an office staff consisting of eight Europeans and a number of Chinese and Portuguese.


The excellent service maintained by the Norddeutscher Lloyd between Europe and all the chief ports east of Suez dates from the contract with the Imperial German Government for the establishment of mail steamship lines to Eastern Asia and to Australia, that was signed in 1885. The Company had already registered a series of triumphs, extending over nearly thirty years, on the trans-Atlantic run, and it was with the utmost confidence that the stockholders increased their capital by 20,000,000 marks in order to make the extensive preparations demanded by the new contract. The chief point to be considered was regularity, and, keeping that point always in view, orders were placed with a German shipbuilding firm for several new steamers with speeds of from 12½ to 14 knots an hour, and for the reconstruction of several existing steamers with a view to their use in the tropics. The service was inaugurated with the steamer Oder in June, 1886, the occasion of her departure being marked by a patriotic demonstration, attended by representatives from the highest Imperial and Bremen governing bodies, the Chinese Minister in Berlin, and numerous members of the Federal Council and the Reichstag. About twelve months later the Australian mail line was opened with the steamer Salier. The Imperial Government subsidised the new lines on two main conditions—the first that mails should be carried regularly, and the second that the vessels should be available when required for the transport of naval reliefs and military forces. The subsequent rapid development of the Company's interests has been due to the care exercised in seeing that passengers lacked no comforts that could possibly be supplied, and were subjected to no restraints other than those absolutely unavoidable. As time went on there was a gradual improvement in the design of the vessels themselves, until, in those of the Prince class, the problem of the best type of steamer for the tropics was finally solved. They were the first passenger steamers to have the entire cabin accommodation above the upper deck. The next advance, so far as the Far Eastern routes were concerned, was made when the Barbarossa type was designed, each vessel of which class can accommodate 250 first saloon, 300 second saloon, and 1,600 steerage passengers. In 1899 the Government subsidy was increased, and fortnightly sailings to Eastern Asia were substituted for the former monthly sailings, the König Albert opening the new service. The steamers sail from Bremen or Hamburg, and touch at Rotterdam, Antwerp, Southampton, Gibraltar, Algiers, Genoa, Naples, Port Said, Suez, Aden, Colombo, Penang, Singapore, Hongkong, Shanghai, Nagasaki, Kobe, and Yokohama.

For the benefit of the tourist the Company issue "all round the world" tickets, which give a wide choice of routes, and enable the traveller to prolong his stay at any place his fancy may dictate. The growing number of applications for these tickets indicates how well the Company has gauged the popular taste, and how carefully the prices have been adjusted to suit the requirements of people of average means.

By their unbounded enterprise the Company have succeeded in diverting to their freight steamers a large proportion of the Eastern coasting trade to such an extent indeed, that the German flag now claims predominance in Singapore and Bangkok. In view of their constant expansion, the Norddeutscher Lloyd have now established a special bureau of inspection in Singapore and Hongkong.

In European waters the Company have two large and most comfortable steamers running between Marseilles and Alexandria, three between Marseilles and the Black Sea ports, and two between Alexandria and Constanza.

The Norddeutscher Lloyd also operate the Austral-Japan Line, which gives sailings between Japan and Sydney, viâ Hongkong and New Guinea, and in connection with which there is an excellent service of small steamers plying among the lovely islands of the South Pacific.


The fleet is made up of 7 express steamers 4—the well-known leviathans, the Kron-prinzessen, Kaiser Wilhelm II., Kronprinz Wilhelm, and Kaiser Wilhelm der Grosse—on the Bremen-New York run, and 3 sailing between Naples, Genoa, and New York; 18 imperial mail steamers, which maintain the East Asian and Australian services, and are sometimes employed on the Atlantic run during the summer months; 30 mail steamers running intermediately on the main lines, or engaged in branch services; 9 freight steamers, used on the Australian or South American routes; 3 comfortable steamers running between Australia and Japan, and calling at German New Guinea ports; and 12 vessels on the stocks—a total of 80 ocean-going vessels. Then there are 50 coasting steamers, and nearly as many river vessels, bringing up the aggregate to 177 steamers, with a total horse-power of 469,200, and a gross register tonnage of 640,391, or, including the steamers now building, of 671,670 horse-power and 754,441 registered tonnage. Two training-ships, on which cadets are thoroughly taught the theory and practice of navigation, and over 200 lighters, complete the list—a list of which the Company is justly proud.

[See page 201.]

The agents in Hongkong are Messrs. Melchers & Co., whose offices occupy a prominent position overlooking the harbour.

[See page 201.]


The local branch of this important steamship Company, whose central office for the East is at Shanghai, and who have another branch also at Tsingtau, was opened in 1901. The Company run a fortnightly freight service from Europe to the Far East and a monthly passenger service. The ships employed in the passenger service are of the most modern type and are fitted up with every comfort and convenience, a prominent feature being the non-existence of upper berths and the provision of exceptionally large cabins. They run from Hamburg, viâ Southampton, Lisbon, and Naples (for passengers only) to Port Said, Suez, Colombo, Penang, Singapore, Hongkong, Shanghai, Kobe, and Yokohama, and back viâ the same ports to Naples, Plymouth, Havre, and Hamburg. The fortnightly freight service is also between the above ports, but the ships call frequently at Bremen, Emden, Rotterdam, Amsterdam, and Antwerp. There is another regular freight service between New York, Boston, &c., and the Far East, viâ Suez. Coasting steamers ply between Hongkong, Tsingtau, Nagasaki, and Vladivostock, and between the Yangtsze ports, Hongkong, and Canton. The manager of the Hongkong branch of the Company is Mr. C. G. Gok, and the staff includes Messrs. G. Boolsen, G. Priedemann, F. L. Margrees, and Captain H. Metzenthin, marine superintendent.


The Canadian Pacific Railway Company, organised in 1881, and now familiarly known as the "C.P.R.," is a carrying company of considerable and increasing importance, not only in the Dominion of Canada, but also in many other parts of the world. In the earlier stages of its existence an energetic management foresaw the great possibilities of trade with China and Japan, and at once placed a regular line of chartered steamers on the Pacific to run between Hongkong, Japan, and Vancouver. The experiment proving successful, and the indications pointing to great expansion of the trade referred to, the Company laid down three of the most beautiful steamers the ocean has ever seen. These vessels—the Empress of India, the Empress of Japan, and the Empress of China—commenced their sailings on the Pacific in 1891, and have since maintained a regular and most efficient service, becoming world-renowned for their comfort, speed, and punctuality. The importance of the C.P.R. Line as an all-British route was quickly recognised by the home Government, and a contract was entered into for the carriage of mails and the transportation of naval and military passengers and stores. This contract has been carried out with unfailing regularity and to the satisfaction of the Governments concerned. A few years ago it became apparent that the service maintained by the Empresses was insufficient to cope with the requirements of the trade, and the Company therefore augmented their Pacific fleet by the addition of three intermediate vessels, running them alternately with the regular mail steamers.

The regular ports of call for the Pacific steamers are Hongkong, Shanghai, Nagasaki, Yokohama, Victoria, B.C., and Vancouver, B.C., and the period of mail transit between Hongkong and Vancouver, including calls at the various ports named, is only eighteen days, the period from Yokohama being eleven days, thereby making it by far the quickest route to the Pacific coast.

Not content with the results attained on the Pacific, the Company, in more recent years, decided to extend their ramifications to the Atlantic, and acquired a fleet of steamers for the purpose, thereby enabling them to link up Great Britain and the Continent with the Dominion of Canada, and, with their Pacific Line, form a through service with the Far East. Two magnificent and fast steamers, the Empress of Britain and the Empress of Ireland, of 15,000 tons each, were built by the Company in 1905, for the Atlantic mail and passenger service, and it was not long before they became first favourites with the travelling public. The advent of the Canadian Pacific Railway's Atlantic Line placed the Company in a position to carry passengers and mails through from England to Hongkong, or intervening points, under their own flag. With the regular Pacific service, a special "Overseas Mail" train across Canada, and the fast Atlantic Empresses, the through period of transit is only 29½ days from Hongkong to London, and 22½ days from Yokohama. This, in itself, is an achievement to be proud of, but it is anticipated that in the near future even this may be improved upon. The increasing popularity of the Canadian Pacific Railway as a through route to England is evidenced by the continued growth in the number of passengers using the line.

The Company's lines run through the temperate zone throughout, a very great consideration to residents in the Tropics proceeding home on leave. No route offers a more varied description of scenery, and the traveller, for pleasure or instruction, or both, has every opportunity of getting what he wants when travelling over this system. Glimpses of China and Japan are obtained, even by those passing through on a continuous journey, while any desirous of becoming more intimately acquainted with any place or places can easily arrange their passage in a way to meet their wishes. Those seeking for health derive the greatest benefit from the invigorating air of the Pacific and the mountain ranges of Canada.

Mr. D. W. Craddock, who has been in the Company's service for over sixteen years, is the general traffic agent for China, the Straits Settlements, India, &c. His headquarters are at Hongkong. Mr. J. Rankin, is agent at Shanghai, and Messrs. Jardine, Matheson & Co., represent the Company at the various coast and river ports in China.

DECK, "PRINCESS ALICE."[See page 201.]


The Pacific Mail Steamship Company was founded in 1848, and in those early days ran a line of steamers from New York to San Francisco, viâ the Straits of Magellan. On the completion of the Panama Railroad between Aspinwall (Colon) on the Atlantic, and Panama on the Pacific, in 1860, the steamers ran only from San Francisco to Panama, connecting with the Vanderbilt Line from Aspinwall to New York. In 1865 the Company purchased the Vanderbilt Line, and in the following year commenced to send boats between Shanghai and Yokohama, viâ the Inland Sea. On January 1, 1867, the Colorado left San Francisco for Hongkong. She was the first of a regular line of steamers to cross the Pacific, and was followed a month later by the Great Republic. The old paddle steamers were replaced by modern screw steamships, as the demands of the traffic required, until, in 1902, the building of the liners Korea and Siberia marked an epoch in trans-Pacific shipping trade. These magnificent steamers have each a displacement of 18,000 tons, are 551 feet long, and have an indicated horse-power of 18,000. In 1903–4 the Pacific Mail acquired the still larger steamers Mongolia and Manchuria, each with a displacement of 27,000 tons. These vessels are 615 feet long. These four ships, in conjunction with the s.s. China, a vessel capable of steaming 18 knots and having excellent passenger accommodation, maintain a schedule of weekly sailings from Hongkong to San Francisco, calling at Shanghai, Nagasaki, Kobe, Yokohama, and Honolulu. This route, viâ the "Paradise of the Pacific" immortalised by Mark Twain and other famous writers, is exceedingly popular among travellers.

The Company's agency at Hongkong was established in 1866, Captain E. A. Harris being their first representative in the Colony.


Japan being an island empire, her communications with foreign countries are entirely maritime, and her commercial prosperity consequently depends largely upon the enterprise which characterises the organisation of her merchant service. The art of navigation has been practised by the people since remote ages, but, as is well known, progress was rudely interrupted by the conflict between foreign religious propagandism and Japanese civil authority, which led to the closure of the country. Things remained thus until the middle of the nineteenth century, when the struggle between conservative tendencies and newly developed liberal principles ended in the re-opening of the country. All restrictions on shipbuilding were withdrawn, the study of navigation received earnest attention, and the Government not only encouraged the construction of sea-going vessels at home, but began also to purchase steamers abroad. In 1882 there were two companies—the Mitsubishi Company and the Kyodŏ Unyu Kaisha, or Union Transportation Company—in receipt of State aid. But a trial of three years demonstrated the inexpediency of having two subsidised rival companies in the field, and in 1885 they were amalgamated into the present Nippon Yusen Kaisha, or Japan Mail Steamship Company. During the following nine years the bulk of the coastwise carrying trade was held by the steamers of this Company. Moreover, regular services were maintained between Yokohama and Kobe and the large ports of China; a line of steamers plied between Japan and Bombay; and vessels flying the Nippon Yusen Kaisha flag made frequent voyages to Australia and Hawaii, carrying emigrants. The China-Japanese War of 1894–95 finally established the Company's reputation for efficiency, and amply justified the trust hitherto reposed in it by the State. It has now established steamship services to America. Europe, and Australia, and, under contract with the Japanese Government, it maintains regular mail lines between Japan and Europe, between Hongkong, Shanghai, Japan ports, and America, and between Japan and Australia; the two first named being each fortnightly and the latter four weekly. There are also regular weekly services between Hongkong, Swatow and Bangkok, and a tri-monthly service from Kobe to Bombay. Regular and frequent services are maintained from Japan to North China, Korea, Vladivostock, Formosa, &c., and around the coast of Japan. Altogether, the Nippon Yusen Kaisha maintains twenty-three regular services, of which nine are with foreign countries, and fourteen in home waters. The Company is agent for the Great Northern Steamship Company, operating the new twin-screw steamship Minnesota between Seattle, Japan, and China. The Minnesota has a cubical capacity of 28,000 tons, and is by far the largest steamer running to the Orient. The Company also represents in the Orient the Great Northern Railway, whose track passes through some of the finest scenery in America, and is agent, as well, for the Nisshin Kisen Kaisha (Japan-China Steam Navigation Company). It has a capital of Y22,000,000, a reserve of over Y11,000,000, and a fleet of 78 steamers aggregating 260,000 tons gross, the majority of them new and furnished with everything necessary to the comfort of passengers and the expeditious handling of cargo. The Company may therefore claim to be not only amongst the first and most important of Japanese shipping firms, but worthy also to rank amongst the greatest enterprises of its kind in the world. Mr. T. Kusumoto is the manager of the branch office of the Company at Hongkong.


[See page 201.]

[See page 201.]


Amongst the Japanese shipping firms having offices at Hongkong, the Toyo Kisen Kaisha occupies a prominent place. The Company was formed only ten years ago at Tokyo, Japan, and its growth has, like that of Japanese shipping generally, been remarkable. At the present time the Company conducts the mail service between Hongkong, Shanghai, the Japanese ports, and San Francisco, via Honolulu, under contract with the Japanese Government. The steamers on this run have earned a well-deserved reputation for comfort, speed, and punctuality, and are at the moment one of the most popular lines in the America-Orient passenger traffic. The steamers employed are the Hongkong Maru, Nippon Maru, and the America Maru, each of which is of 6,200 tons gross. But, up-to-date as these vessels are, their capacity has proved too small for the ever-increasing demands of the service, and they are to be replaced by three ships of 14,000 tons gross, which are being constructed in Japanese shipyards. They will be the largest steamers so far built in Japan. They are being fitted with turbine engines, will burn liquid fuel, and in every other respect, will be as thoroughly equipped as Atlantic liners. It has been decided to call one the Tenyo Maru, another the Chiyo Maru, while the name of the third is under consideration. The first one is almost ready, and the others will be completed at short intervals. They will certainly constitute a very important addition to the fleet, but the Company's enterprise does not end in their efforts to provide speedy and luxurious transport from the Orient to America. They are the pioneers in the Hongkong South American Line, for the only communication in this direction, before they established a regular service, was by an occasional tramp steamer or sailing vessel. Their venture has been rewarded with great success, and they now run vessels regularly between Hongkong, Callao, and Iquique, viâ Japanese ports, and call at Mexican and other coast ports as required. The steamers in this service are of 6,000 tons capacity and include the Kasato Maru. The Company also has a service of several tank steamers carrying crude oil from California to the Orient. The president of the line is Mr. S. Asano, who is at Tokyo, Mr. M. Shiraishi and Mr. T. Isaka, are managers of the Company's business at headquarters, while the Hongkong branch is under the control of Mr. K. Matsda, who has resided in the Colony for some nine years, having come as an assistant and being shortly afterwards promoted to his present position. The firm's offices are in York Buildings, and they employ a staff of Japanese assistants which is increasing in number year by year as the business of the Company grows. The new steamers—both those that are now nearing completion, and others that are under construction—are all to be christened with names ending in "Yo" (meaning ocean), and for this reason the Company may be known as the "Yo Line" in the course of the next few years.

The S.S. "Tango Maru"—On the American Run.Saloon of S.S. "Nikko Maru"—On the Australian Run.


A quarter of a Century ago there were about 120 steamers under different ownership running out of Osaka to the inland and coast ports of Japan. Competition between them was so keen that, although cargo and passengers were plentiful, the owners suffered heavy losses. At this juncture, in order to prevent a crisis, the Japanese Government advised amalgamation. This advice was wisely acted upon, and resulted in the formation, on May 1, 1884, of the Osaka Shosen Kabushiki Kaisha (Osaka Mercantile Steamship Company) Limited Liability Company, registered and having its head office in Osaka. At first the new Company encountered much difficulty in running the steamers at a profit, but gradually the confidence of the general public was obtained and the Company entered upon an era of prosperity. Regular services with first-class steamers were started to all inland ports and coast ports of Japan, to North China and Korean coast ports, Formosa and South China, Hongkong, and Shanghai, viâ China coast ports, and between Shanghai and Yangtsze ports. This latter service, however, has since been transferred to the Nisshin Kisen Kaisha. Occasional service is maintained between Japan and Java ports, &c. Six new ships are under construction (each over 6,000 tons, and to have a speed of over 14 knots) for a trans-Pacific service which is to be inaugurated shortly. At the present day, therefore, the Osaka Shosen Kaisha may be said to rank among the premier steamship companies of Japan.

The first subscribed capital of the Company was Y1,042,265 in 1884, but in 1893 it was increased to Y1,800,000. The replacing of old vessels by newly built steamers, in order to meet Government requirements in respect of subsidised lines, was completed in 1894, when the capital was further increased to Y2,500,000. In 1896, the Japan-Formosa lines under Government subsidy were inaugurated. The Yangtsze River services were opened in 1898, and the South China coast lines were started in the following year. In 1900 it was agreed by the shareholders to raise the capital to Y11,000,000, and owing to the favourable state of the financial market the scheme was carried out successfully in November, 1904. The present capital amounts to Y16,500,000, of which Y15,125,000 have been paid up. The balance sheet published in June, 1907, showed a net profit for the previous half-year of Y1,059,896.

To meet the Company's ever-widening sphere of activity the fleet has been increased from time to time. In 1884, the Company owned 3 iron and steel and 93 wooden steamers, aggregating 17,056 tons; while in 1907 the fleet consisted of 76 iron and steel and 33 wooden steamers of 108,037 gross tonnage. At the present time 10 steel steamers of 42,450 tons gross are under construction.

The Company has had offices in Hongkong for many years, and Mr. T. Arima, the manager of the branch, is one of the best-known members of the Japanese community in the Colony.


In addition to their other widespread business interests, the firm of Messrs. Jardine, Matheson & Co., Ltd., are general managers of the Indo-China Steam Navigation Company, Ltd., and agents for several shipping lines, carrying on a large chartering trade to all ports in the East.

The Calcutta Line, which has been operated for many years, was recently extended to Japan ports, and is run by three new steamers, of which the Kutsang is the latest. She is a thoroughly up-to-date vessel of 4,895 tons, fitted throughout with electric light, and provided with excellent accommodation for twenty-one first-class passengers and a limited number of second. The Namsang and the Fooksang, also providing accommodation for first and second-class travellers, are comfortably appointed modern steamers; whilst there are also two intermediate steamers on the run, the Kumsang and the Laisang. The combined service makes regular trips from Calcutta to Hongkong and on to Japan, giving a departure from Calcutta about every ten days. All Calcutta steamers carry a duly qualified surgeon.

The Canton, Hongkong and Tientsin Direct Line is maintained by the Cheongshing and Chipshing, of 1,980 and 1,984 tons gross respectively, which were specially constructed at home for this service. They have good passenger accommodation and large cargo carrying capacity on a light draft, and are thus able to proceed up the Peiho River as far as the Tientsin Bund.

The Java Line gives a regular service between Hongkong, Singapore, Samarang and Sourabaya, and is operated by steamers of from 3,000 to 4,000 tons capacity. A steamer also runs regularly between Hongkong, Kudat, Sandakan, and other Borneo ports. The vessel on this line, the Mausang, is specially adapted for the handling of heavy timber, this being the principal cargo carried.

The Hongkong Manila Line is maintained by the Loongsang and Yuensang, which give a regular sailing from each port every Friday. Three new steamers, fitted with ample passenger accommodation—the Choysang, the Hangsang, and the Kwongsang—each of 3,000 tons, are engaged on the Canton, Hongkong, and Shanghai service, calling at the coast ports as required, but usually at Swatow.

The Company also do a large chartering business between Eastern ports, and in this the Amara, Chunsang, Fansang, Hopsang, Onsang, Suisang, Hinsang, Fooshing, and Yatshing are engaged. These steamers are between 3,000 and 4,000 tons carrying capacity, are fitted with 'tween decks and side ports, and are in every respect the most suitable type of boat for the safe and expeditious handling of cargo. The Indo-China Company employ in their Eastern service about 330 Europeans—captains, officers, engineers, doctors, and pilots.

Messrs. Jardine, Matheson & Co. also act as agents in China and Japan for Sir T. B. Royden, managing owner of the Indra Line, Ltd., whose steamers run at regular intervals between New York, Boston, viâ the Suez Canal to the Straits, Philippines, China coast and Japan, returning to the United States by the same route. The vessels, which run in conjunction with the other New York lines, are of large carrying capacity, are fitted throughout with electric light, and maintain a speed of 10–12 knots. The following is a list of the steamers, showing their gross tonnage: Indra, 6,057; Indravelli, 5,805; Indramayo, 5,200; Indrasamha, 5,197; Indrawadi, 5,194; Indrani, 4,994; and Indrapura, 4,899.

In addition to the foregoing, the firm represent the well-known British India Steam Navigation Company, Ltd., and the Asiatic Steam Navigation Company. The British India Company's steamers from Rangoon to Hongkong and China ports, viâ the Straits afford superior accommodation for first-class passengers, and are fitted with electric light throughout.

Mr. R. Sutherland is in charge of the firm's shipping department.

[See page 204.]TOYO KISEN KAISHA.
The Hongkong Office.The Yokohama Office.
S. Asano
S.S. "Tenyo Maru," built in Japan.


Intending visitors to Manila, the capital of the beautiful Philippine Islands, can hardly do better than book by one of the steamers run by the China and Manila Steamship Company, Ltd., the general managers of which are Messrs. Shewan, Tomes & Co. The service is maintained by two steamers, the Zafiro and the Rubi, each of 3,000 tons, and with first-class accommodation for fifty saloon passengers. The table is excellent, and the sleeping and other appointments are most comfortable. The vessels, which are officered by Europeans and carry a doctor, make weekly sailings, carrying cargo as well as passengers.


The history of the formation of the Douglas Steamship Company, is very interesting. The foundations of what is now a large and important undertaking were laid by Mr. Douglas Lapraik, who carried on business in the Colony as a watchmaker and jeweller. He conceived the idea that there was profit to be made in trading along the China coast, and, consequently, in conjunction with a few friends he purchased several small steamers and started upon the venture. Upon his death he left his interest in the seven vessels which had been employed in the trade to his nephew, Mr. John Stewart Lapraik, and he, on July 28, 1883, floated the Douglas Steamship Company. Since then the general trade of the Company with the coast ports and Formosa, has largely increased, for, although the vessels employed have diminished in number, they have been replaced by several of far greater carrying capacity. For ten years Mr. J. S. Lapraik took an active interest in the management of affairs, and, after his death, his partner, Mr. Davis, assumed control. He was succeeded by Mr. Lewis, who, in 1900, was joined by Mr. H. P. White, the present manager at Hongkong. Formerly the headquarters of the Company were situated on the Praya, or Connaught Road as it is now called, but they have since been removed to Douglas Street.

(Messrs. Jardine, Matheson & Co., General Managers.)
Promenade Deck of the "Kutsang."[See page 205.]
S.S. "Laisang."
Saloon of the "Kutsang."


The organisation of the "Messageries Cantonaises" shows that the French are far from being disinterested spectators of the commercial life and development of the Chinese provinces around their beautiful Colony of Tonkin, The Company which was floated in 1907 by the Compagnie Française des Indes et de l'Extreme-Orient is subsidised by the Government of Indo-China, and retains the French postal service between Hongkong, Canton, and Wuchow (Kwangsi). Under supervision from the Paris headquarters it operates the steamships Paul Beau and Charles Hardouin, both of which are speedy and comfortable. The Paul Beau is named after the Governor-General of Indo-China, and the Charles Hardouin after the late Consul-General for France at Canton, who actively occupied himself in the foundation of the line. The two steamers are of 1,900 tons each. They were built at Nantes in 1904. and have a speed of 14 knots. The registered office of the "Messageries Cantonaises" is at Canton, and the agents in
[See page 207.](Messrs. Shewan, Tomes & Co., General Managers.)
Hongkong are the well-known firm of Messrs. Barretto & Co. The local director of the Company is Captain P. A. Lapicque, of the French Naval Reserve.


Tourists in the East would be well repaid for a visit to Java, for in addition to its natural beauties, this island contains ruins of magnificent temples, relics of a past and wonderful civilisation, which fill the beholder with pleasure and surprise. The recent completion of a good railway system makes it possible to pass quite quickly through the island, and the Java-China-Japan Lijn have established a regular and excellent three-weekly service between Java, China, and Japan. They have six large 6,000 ton steamers—Tjikini, Tjipanas, Tjimahi, Tjiliwong, Tjilatjap, and Tjibodas—all of which are fitted throughout with electric light and offer accommodation for a limited number of saloon passengers, who may rest assured that their convenience and comfort will receive every consideration from the officials. The Company also take cargo to all ports in Netherlands Indies, and are the agents for the Sabang Bay Coaling Station, Pulo Weh Island, North Sumatra. The bay is completely sheltered from wind and sea throughout the year, and steamers passing that way can always replentish their bunkers and obtain a supply of fresh water.

The offices of the Java-China-Japan Lijn are in York Buildings, Hongkong. Mr. P. J. R. Bisschop is the manager, and the staff includes Messrs. H. J. van den Bosch, R. J. F. van der Voort, G. Otten, J. Jonckheer, H. Westhoff, and H. van Zuylen (marine superintendent).



There are several excellent services of night steamers between Hongkong and Canton. That wonderfully interesting city is brought within easy access of the Colony, and, even though the tourist is able to spend but a few days in this part of the world, he will find himself amply repaid for a visit by the many strange and curious sights. The journey may be accomplished easily and comfortably, on either of the steamers Kwong Tung or Kwong Sai operated by the Yuen On and the Shiu On Steamship Companies, Ltd. The steamer from Hongkong leaves the Company's wharf at nine o'clock every evening, Saturday excepted, and arrives at its destination about 6.30 the following morning. The steamer from Canton leaves the Shameen at 5.30 every evening, Sunday excepted, and reaches Hongkong about midnight. The boats are commanded by European captains and officers. They are large and comfortable, scrupulously clean, and lighted throughout by electricity, while the well-equipped first-class cabins are all fitted with electric fans. The fare to Canton and back is only $8, and meals are provided at very reasonable rates. The boats are owned by Chinese capitalists, and the general management of the combined companies s in the hands of Mr. Chau Sin Ki.


So much depends upon the manner in which the business of a large steamship line is conducted in foreign ports that great care is exercised in the appointment of agents. The distinction of representing the North German Lloyd Steamship Company in Hongkong is enjoyed by Messrs. Melchers & Co., a large firm of exporters, importers, and shipping and insurance agents. A branch of this business was established in the Colony in 1866 by Mr. Hermann Melchers, the present head of the house in Bremen, and since then other branches have been opened in Canton, Shanghai, Chinkiang, Hankow, Ichang, and Tientsin. The partners are Hermann Melchers and Adalbert Korff (Bremen), C. Michelau and A. Widmann (Shanghai), and J. Bandow and G. Friesland (Hongkong). Their representatives in London are Messrs. Runge, Wolters & Co., Ltd., for their trade is extensive and is constantly increasing, so that agents in large business centres are a necessity. Besides acting for the Norddeutscher Lloyd, Messrs. Melchers & Co. represent the East Asiatic Company, Ltd., St. Petersburg; the Swedish East Asiatic Company, Ltd., Gothenburg; the Russian Volunteer Fleet, St. Petersburg; the Russian Ministry of Finance, St. Petersburg; the Deutsche Dampfschifffahrts Gesellschaft "Hansa," Bremen; the New Guinea Company, Berlin; the Germanischer Lloyd, Berlin; the Bremen underwriters; the Royal Fire and Life Insurance Company, Liverpool; the United Swiss Marine Insurance Company, Manchester; the Basler Transport Versicherungs Gesellschaft, Basel; Allgemeine Versicherungs Gesellschaft "Helvetia"; the Transport Versicherungs Gesellschaft "Schweiz"; the Internationale Lloyd Versicherungs Actien Gesellschaft; the Assurance Company, "Mercur"; Societé d'Entrepôts de Transports; and La Aseguradora Espanola. In the absence of Mr. J. Bandow, Mr. G. Friesland is the manager of the Company's business at Hongkong, and his assistants include Messrs. A. Lamperski (who signs per pro.). C. Ahrendt, H. Warnsloh, R. Reutter, E. Jesnitzer, O. Meyer, H. Korten, and F. Steinhoff. The manager of the branch at Canton is Mr. P. Suedhaus.