The World Administered by Irishmen

The life and times of Robert Hart and contemporary Irish in East Asia

Robin Masefield

This richly-illustrated book is the product of extensive research that initially focuses on the Chinese Maritime Customs Service and the Ulsterman Sir Robert Hart who led it for 45 years, and then brings together a treasure trove of other, largely untold, lives of Irish men and women in East Asia.

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I cannot commend this book highly enough… this is a remarkable account of an extraordinary period in history and the role so many Irish men and women played in it.

Andrew Heyn CMG, OBE
Honorary Professor at the Senator George Mitchell Institute, Queen’s University Belfast

This richly-illustrated book is the product of extensive research that initially focuses on the Chinese Maritime Customs Service, and the Ulsterman Sir Robert Hart who led it for 45 years, until 1908. But it also brings together a treasure trove of other, largely untold, lives of Irish men and women in East Asia – men from around Lisburn working with Hart in the Customs Service; a nurse from Roscommon; a doctor from Cork; a diplomat from Meath; Hong Kong governors from Dublin; a railway engineer from Westmeath, and many more. Some served the British Government overseas, while others were journalists, academics, doctors and engineers who did not all see themselves as part of the Imperial machinery. In using first-hand accounts where possible, the book vividly brings to life their many fascinating stories and the special contribution that Irish people made to developing relations with China, Japan and Korea in the nineteenth century.

It is published by Special Collections & Archives, Queen’s University Belfast which includes a unique source of papers and artefacts relating to Robert Hart in their holdings. The book could not have been completed without the guidance of the Head of Special Collections & Archives, Deirdre Wildy, and expert historical research from Karolyn Cooper.

The author lived for three years in Hong Kong and has previously written about Hong Kong and Macau. He is an enthusiastic local historian living in Northern Ireland who has also published a number of historical books about County Down.

Profits from the sale of the book will go to charity.

Details

Format: Paperback / Softback

ISBN / EAN: 9780995588622

Published On: 1 June, 2023

Page Count: 268

Publisher: Special Collections & Archives, Queen's University Belfast

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