HOME  >  Browse  >  Photographs  >  China, Far East & Middle East  >  Hong Kong, Happy Valley Cemetery

The Hong Kong, Happy Valley Cemetery

Happy Valley, Hong Kong . Hong Kong, Happy Valley Cemetery

Hong Kong, ca. 1865

Albumen print, mounted. 8 ½ x 12 inches. Manuscript caption on mount: “The Happy Valley Hong Kong.”

This is one of the earliest photographic views of Hong Kong, Happy Valley Cemetery founded in 1845. The Happy Valley Cemetery sits directly across from the Happy Valley Racecourse, which it predates. “The name Happy Valley was given to the area before the Cemetery was opened. Perhaps it was so called because it was considered the most fertile and the prettiest place on the north coast” (Lim, Forgotten Souls  5). Happy Valley was first intended to be the business center of Hong Kong but climate conditions prevented this.

The Hong Kong, Happy Valley Cemetery was built as a series of terraces up the hillside. This is an early view of the oldest graves in the burial ground. The remains of the wealthy, powerful, and controversial figures of old Hong Kong are found in the cemetery including Sir Kai Ho Kai and Yang Quyun, advisers of Sun Yatsen.