1. “Mystery” Places

Throughout the research trajectory, some reported place names are challenging to locate, mainly due to inconspicuous entities and ever-changing city development. Below are some examples.

Black Market: It is not an “actual place”, but refers to the underground economy indeed. During the wartime period, dwellers were suffering from the upsurging price of necessities, which fostered the growth of the “black market”, selling goods at an affordable level without official permission.

Yu Lok Theatre: It is referring to King’s Theatre in Central (中文名稱:娛樂戲院), a performing venue equipped with air-conditioning. In 1993, King’s Theatre was demolished and reconstructed as Entertainment Building.

Main Road in Sheung Shui: You may promptly relate it to Castle Peak Road, since we have a similar appellation for Castle Peak Road – Yuen Long, “Yuen Long Main Road”. However, after careful study, the Main Road in Sheung Shui is San Fung Avenue, which is commonly known as “Tai Maloo” due to its vivid and busy activities there.

North Temple Street: Temple Street is located in Jordan, but where is North Temple Street? According to local dwellers, they used to call the northern section of Temple Street (intersected by Jordan Road) as North Temple Street.

2. Unorganised Place Names

It is noticeable that “The Hong Kong News” adopted various terms to describe the same location. For instance, “Mui Wo” and “Mui Wor”, “Nan Cheung Street” and “Nan Ciang Street”, “Nakameiji Dori” and “Higashimeiji Dori” (Now Queen’s Road East), etc. Hence, it is not difficult to realize that the place names reported by the newspaper were not organized and consistent.

3. The Changing Stonecutters Island

On 15th August 1942, the authority renamed “Stonecutters Island” to “Mukojima”. It is a breakthrough discovery that was not mentioned in articles and on the internet before. Stonecutters Island was then attached to the Kowloon Peninsula amid the Rose Garden Project in the early 1990s.

4. Life in the 40s

“More people now go to the amusement area at Shamshuipo during night time since the extension of the curfew hour, and over ten new restaurants and cafes have been opened” (16 January 1943)

“… a Chinese syndicate is now contemplating one in a restaurant and hotel at Shek Tong Tsui within the amusement area, it is reported. The same concern expects to run a skating ring and a department in which Chinese sinking and musical entertainment will be provided.” (10 February 1943)

The above passages have depicted the lifestyle in the 1940s, which can be scrutinised through spatial and temporal scale, as well as the type of recreation provided. According to the newspaper, two zones in Shek Tong Tsui and Sham Shui Po were designated as amusement areas, encompassing business activities like restaurants, café, massage houses or even skating rinks (other sources revealed that vice establishments were present as well, but was not recorded in The Hong Kong News). Yet, it was reported that the entertaining service had ceased in June 1943, and has not revived ever since.

5. Shortage of Electricity and Fuel in the Late Stage

“A change in the business hours for the supply of milk has been announced by the Hongkong Farm. They are now from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m., and from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. at both the Main Depot in Glenealy and at the branch depot at Causeway Bay. The change is made in order to economize in the use of electricity.” (19 April 1944)

“With the object of assisting the Government in the saving of fuel and complying with wartime con-ditions, the Hongkong Tramways Bureau will cut down the tram services to a minimum from next month, it was learned. However, additional trams will be put on the different routes during busy hours for the convenience of office-goers.” (28 March 1944)

The first clipping reported that the supply of milk was affected due to the shortage of electricity, while the latter one announced the shrinkage of tram service caused by insufficient fuel supply. Above all, it is evident the everyday lives of citizens were interfered with, ranging from dieting to transportation.