Hong Kong in History

China: Macao

Historical Events

  • 1839-08-23 British capture Hong Kong from China
  • 1841-01-20 China cedes Hong Kong to the British during the 1st Opium War
  • 1841-01-26 Hong Kong proclaimed a sovereign territory of Britain
  • 1843-06-26 Hong Kong proclaimed a British Crown Colony
  • 1887-11-15 British SS Wah Yeung catches fire on Canton River off Hong Kong
  • 1892-10-10 Entire Hong Kong national cricket team dies in shipwreck off Taiwan

Historic Event

1898-04-24 US fleet under commodore George Dewey sails from Hong Kong to Philippines

  • 1898-06-09 China leases Hong Kong's new territories to the United Kingdom for 99 years
  • 1906-09-18 A typhoon with tsunami kills an estimated 10,000 people in Hong Kong
  • 1918-02-26 Stands at Hong Kong Jockey Club collapse & burn, killing 604
  • 1925-06-23 British warship fires on Hong Kong harbor strikers
  • 1941-12-18 Japanese troops land on Hong Kong
  • 1941-12-25 Japan announces surrender of British-Canadian garrison at Hong Kong
  • 1945-08-29 British liberate Hong Kong from Japan
  • 1945-08-30 Hong Kong liberated from Japanese control
  • 1945-11-08 Riverboat sinks off Hong Kong; kills 1,550
  • 1951-04-29 China seizes the assets of the Asiatic Petroleum Company, a joint venture between the Shell and Royal Dutch oil companies in retaliation for the Hong Kong Government's requisitioning of the tanker Yung Hao
  • 1967-11-19 The establishment of TVB, the first wireless commercial television station in Hong Kong
  • 1972-01-09 Retired passenger liner Queen Elizabeth destroyed by fire in Hong Kong harbour

Film & TV History

1973-05-10 Bruce Lee collapses in Golden Harvest studios in Hong Kong and is rushed to Hong Kong Baptist Hospital where doctors diagnose him with cerebral edema

  • 1975-04-25 1st Boeing Jetfoil revenue service, Hong Kong to Macao

Film Release

1978-05-01 Jackie Chan's breakthrough film "Snake in the Eagle's Shadow" directed by Yuen Woo-ping, is released in Hong Kong

  • 1979-09-29 Gold hits record $400.20 an ounce in Hong Kong

Film Release

1982-01-21 Shaolin Temple" martial arts film released, first Hong Kong feature filmed in China, directed by Chang Hsin Yen, starring Jet Li in his debut role

  • 1984-09-19 Britain & China complete a proposed agreement to transfer Hong Kong to China by 1997
  • 1984-09-26 Britain & China initial agreement return Hong Kong to China in 1997

Treaty of Interest

1984-12-19 Chinese Premier Zhao Ziyang and British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher sign the Sino-British Joint Declaration to transfer Hong Kong back to China in 1997

  • 1985-05-27 Britain agrees to return Hong Kong to China in 1997

Film Premiere

1986-02-08 Crime film "A Better Tomorrow", starring Yun Fat Chow, premieres in Hong Kong

  • 1989-11-08 Hong Kong's MTR Lam Tin Station comes into service
  • 1989-12-29 Riots break-out after Hong Kong decides to forcibly repatriate Vietnamese refugees.
  • 1990-04-25 Hong Kong actress Carina Lau is abducted by Triad members

Historic Event

1990-05-17 The Bank of China Tower in Hong Kong designed by I. M. Pei opens as the first supertall skyscraper outside the US

  • 1993-01-01 "Farewell My Concubine" directed by Chen Kaige from novel by Lilian Lee starring Leslie Cheung, Zhang Fengyi and Gong Li premieres in Hong Kong (Cannes Palme d'Or 1993)
  • 1994-08-10 Last British troops leave Hong Kong (been there since Sept 1841)
  • 1997-06-30 British lease on the New Territories in Hong Kong, established by the Second Convention of Peking, expires
  • 1997-07-01 United Kingdom returns Hong Kong and the New Territories to the People's Republic of China
  • 1997-12-29 Hong Kong begins slaughtering all its chickens to prevent bird flu
  • 1998-07-06 Hong Kong's Kai Tak Airport is closed and the new Hong Kong International Airport at Chek Lap Kok becomes operational
  • 2000-09-29 "In the Mood for Love", Hong Kong film directed by Wong Kar-wai, starring Maggie Cheung and Tony Leung released
  • 2003-07-10 Neoplan bus, owned by Kowloon Motor Bus, collides with a truck, falls off bridge on Tuen Mun Road, Hong Kong, and plunges into the underlying valley, killing 21 people. Deadliest Hong Kong traffic accident.
  • 2004-08-27 Hong Kong martial arts film "Hero" starring Jet Li opens in the US and becomes first Chinese-language film to go to #1 at US box office
  • 2005-03-12 Tung Chee Hwa, the first Chief Executive of Hong Kong, steps down from his post after his resignation is approved by the Chinese central government.
  • 2005-09-12 Hong Kong Disneyland opens in Penny's Bay, Lantau Island, Hong Kong.
  • 2005-12-04 Tens of thousands of people in Hong Kong protest for democracy and call on the Government to allow universal and equal suffrage
  • 2005-12-17 Anti-WTO protesters riot in Wan Chai, Hong Kong
  • 2007-04-26 Queen's Pier is officially closed by the Hong Kong Government, after a bitter struggle by conservationists, in order to facilitate land reclamation in Hong Kong's Central district
  • 2008-11-14 Hong Kong becomes the second Asian economy to tip into recession, its exports hit by weakening global demand

Historic Event

2011-05-29 Hong Kong student activist group Scholarism started by Joshua Wong and Ivan Lam

  • 2012-10-01 36 people are killed in a ferry collision in Hong Kong
  • 2013-09-23 25 people are killed after Typhoon Usagi passes Hong Kong and China

Film Premiere

2014-06-19 "Transformers: Age of Extinction" directed by Michael Bay and starring Mark Wahlberg premieres in Hong Kong. Highest grossing film of 2014 ($1.104 billion)

  • 2014-12-02 Hong Kong pro-democracy activists clash with police as they try to surround the government's headquarters in some of the worst violence since the protests began
  • 2014-12-12 Over 200 pro-democracy activists arrested in Hong Kong
  • 2016-04-10 Hong Kong pro-democracy political party Demosistō established by Nathan Law, Joshua Wong and Agnes Chow
  • 2017-03-26 Carrie Lam is first woman elected to lead Hong Kong by Beijing-influenced electoral commission
  • 2017-04-04 Pink Star diamond sets world record price of $71 million for a gem at an action in Hong Kong
  • 2017-06-15 New record set for price of a parking lot in Hong Kong - $664,000

Historic Event

2017-06-28 China’s president, Xi Jinping begins 3 day trip to Hong Kong to mark 20 years since the territory handed back to China

  • 2017-08-11 Fipronil contaminated eggs now affecting fifteen EU countries, Hong Kong and Switzerland according to European Commission
  • 2017-08-17 Three Hong Kong activists, Jason Wong, Nathan Law and Alex Chow jailed for unlawful assembly
  • 2018-03-16 Asia's second-richest person, Hong Kong's Li Ka-Shing, announces his retirement at 89
  • 2018-07-04 Hong Kong'stop court rules same-sex couples entitled to equal visa rights in landmark case
  • 2018-09-16 Typhoon Mangkhut makes landfall near Jiangmen City, China, winds 120 miles an hour cause tower blocks in nearby Hong Kong to sway
  • 2018-09-30 Chinese-French painter Zao Wou-Ki's work "Juin-Octobre 1985" sells for $65 million in Hong Kong, in one of the most expensive art auctions ever in Asia
  • 2018-10-23 World's longest sea-crossing bridge, the Hong Kong Macau Zhuhai bridge at 55km, opened by Chinese President Xi Jinping
  • 2019-04-09 Nine prominent Hong Kong pro-democracy protesters found guilty on public nuisance charges for their part in 2014 "Umbrella Movement"
  • 2019-04-28 Largest demonstrations since 2014 in Hong Kong over plans to change law to send suspects to mainland China for trial

Tiananmen Square Massacre

2019-06-04 Over 100,000 people mark the 30th anniversary of Beijing's Tiananmen Square Massacre in Hong Kong and around the world

  • 2019-06-09 Over 1 million people protest in Hong Kong over proposed new extradition laws to China in one of largest-ever protests in the city
  • 2019-06-12 Violent protests in Hong Kong as tens of thousands of protesters block and try to storm government buildings to stop extradition law
  • 2019-06-17 Activist Joshua Wong calls on Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam to resign after leaving prison amid street protests the day before of over 2 million people.
  • 2019-06-18 Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam announces the suspension of the pro-China and highly controversial extradition law, after massive protests in the city
  • 2019-08-05 Widespread strike in Hong Kong and demonstrations against Chinese policy towards the territory bring huge disruption, including cancelling 200 flights
  • 2019-08-12 Hong Kong International Airport cancels all departures as thousands of anti-government protesters occupy the terminals
  • 2019-08-18 1.7 million take part in pro-democracy protest peacefully in Hong Kong, a quarter of the population
  • 2019-09-04 Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam withdraws controversial extradition bill to China after three months of massive protests
  • 2019-09-15 Hong Kong police use water cannons and tear gas attempting to disperse thousands of protesters outside the British embassy, as protests continue in the city
  • 2019-10-06 Tens of thousands of Hong Kong protesters march in defiance of a new ban on face masks

Famous Birthdays

  • 1876-06-04 Clara Blandick [Clara Blanchard Dickey], American stage and screen character actress (Tom Sawyer; Huckleberry Finn; Wizard of Oz), born on board an American ship in Hong Kong (d. 1962)
  • 1911-11-27 David Merrick, American theatrical producer (Hello Dolly), born in St. Louis, Missouri (d. 2000)
  • 1912-04-18 Wendy Barrie, British-American TV hostess (Wendy Barrie Show), born in Hong Kong (d. 1978)
  • 1926-10-02 Jan Morris, Welsh journalist, historian and travel writer (Among the Cities, Hong Kong, Journeys), born in Clevedon, Somerset, England (d. 2020)
  • 1927-05-31 Michael Sandberg, British CEO (Hong Kong & Shanghai Banking Corp)
  • 1927-10-08 Raymond Chow, Hong Kong film producer, popularized martial arts worldwide, born in Hong Kong (d. 2018)
  • 1928-07-29 Li Ka-Shing, Hong Kong-Chinese business magnate and entrepreneur (CK Holdings), born in Chao'an, Guangdong, China
  • 1933-10-17 William A Anders, Maj Gen, USAF/astronaut (Apollo 8), born in Hong Kong
  • 1935-02-14 David Wilson, Scottish administrator and 27th Governor of Hong Kong (1987-92), born in Alloa, Scotland
  • 1938-09-29 Henry Keswick, British businessman (CEO-Jardine Matheson Holdings Ltd)
  • 1939-05-19 Nancy Kwan, Hong Kong-born American actress (Flower Drum Song, World of Suzie Wong), born in Hong Kong

Bruce Lee

1940-11-27 Bruce Lee [Lee Yuen Kam], Chinese-American martial artist and actor (Enter the Dragon), born in San Francisco, California (d. 1973)

  • 1942-05-20 Simon Keswick, British financier/merchant (Hong Kong)
  • 1944-10-07 Donald Tsang, Former Chief executive of Hong Kong (2005-1012), born in Hong Kong
  • 1945-02-12 Roman Tam [Pak-sin], Hong Kong singer knownn as the "Grand Godfather of Cantopop", born in Baise, Guangxi, China (d. 2002)
  • 1945-07-21 Lydia Shum, Hong Kong comedian and actress (d. 2008)
  • 1946-05-01 John Woo, Hong Kong director
  • 1947-01-01 Paula Tsui, Hong Kong Canto-pop singer, born in Wuhan, Hubei, China
  • 1947-10-12 George Lam, Hong Kong veteran Cantopop singer, born in Hong Kong
  • 1948-09-04 Samuel Hui, Hong Kong Canto-pop singer-songwriter, born in Xiguan, Guangzhou, Republic of China
  • 1949-04-04 Shing-Tung Yau, Hong Kong-born American mathematician, born in Shantou, Guangdong Province, China
  • 1950-01-16 Brian Castro, Australian author, born in Hong Kong
  • 1952-01-02 Man-Tat Ng, Hong Kong actor (The Final Combat), born in Xiamen, China
  • 1952-01-07 Sammo Hung, Hong Kong actor, director and martial artist (Winners and Sinners), born in Hong Kong
  • 1953-04-14 Eric Tsang, Hong Kong actor, director and TV host (Super Trio series), born in Hong Kong

Jackie Chan

1954-04-07 Jackie Chan, Hong Kong martial arts actor (Rumble in the Bronx), born in Hong Kong

Yun Fat Chow

1955-05-18 Yun Fat Chow, Hong Kong actor (Better Tomorrow), born in Lamma Island, Hong Kong

  • 1956-09-12 Leslie Cheung, Hong Kong actor, singer and composer (Farewell My Concubine), born in Hong Kong (d. 2003)
  • 1957-05-13 Carrie Lam, Chinese politician, Chief Executive of Hong Kong (2017-22), born in Hong Kong
  • 1957-07-26 Yuen Biao, Hong Kong actor and martial artist, born in Castle Peak Road, Hong Kong
  • 1959-04-15 Fruit Chan, Hong Kong film director, born in Guangdong, China
  • 1959-05-07 Barbara Yung Mei-ling, Hong Kong actress, born in Hong Kong (d. 1985)
  • 1960-02-16 Cherie Chung, Hong Kong actress (An Autumn's Tale), born in Hong Kong
  • 1960-03-25 Idy Chan Yuk-Lin, Hong Kong actress
  • 1960-07-17 Robin Shou, Hong Kong Chinese-American martial arts actor (Mortal Kombat, Beverly Hills Ninja), born in British Hong Kong
  • 1960-12-22 (Emil) Wakin Chau, Hong Kong-born singer and actor, born in Sai Ying Pun, Hong Kong
  • 1961-07-10 Jacky Cheung, Hong Kong singer and actor (Bullet in the Head), born in Hong Kong
  • 1961-09-02 Anthony Wong [Chau-sang], Hong Kong actor (The Untold Story), born in Hong Kong
  • 1961-09-27 Andy Lau, Hong Kong actor and singer (Internal Affairs), born in Hong Kong
  • 1961-09-30 Sally Yeh, Hong Kong Canto-pop singer and actress, born in Taipei, Taiwan,
  • 1961-12-21 Francis Ng, Hong Kong actor (Internal Affairs), born in British Hong Kong
  • 1962-06-22 Stephen Chow, Hong Kong film director and actor (Kung Fu Hustle, The Mermaid), born in Hong Kong
  • 1962-06-27 Tony Leung Chiu-wai, Chinese actor (In the Mood for Love), born in Hong Kong
  • 1963-04-02 Dermot Reeve, English cricket all-rounder (3 Tests, 29 ODIs), born in Kowloon, Hong Kong
  • 1963-07-27 Donnie Yen, Hong Kong actor, martial artist and director (Ip Man, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story), born in Guangzhou, China
  • 1963-10-10 Anita Mui, Hong Kong Cantopop singer and actress, "Madonna of the East", born in Hong Kong (d. 2003)
  • 1964-02-16 Ching-Wan [Sean] Lau, Hong Kong actor (Life Without Principle), born in Hong Kong
  • 1964-09-20 Maggie Cheung, Hong Kong actress (1st Asian actress to win at Cannes for "Clean"), born in Hong Kong
  • 1965-02-27 Maggie Siu [Mei-Kei Siu], Hong Kong actress, born in Hong Kong
  • 1965-04-16 Michael Wong Man Tak, Hong Kong-American actor and director, born in Troy, New York
  • 1965-07-28 Priscilla Chan, Hong Kong singer, born in Hong Kong
  • 1965-08-02 Sandra Ng [Kwan-yue], Hong Kong actress (Golden Chicken), born in Hong Kong
  • 1965-10-26 Aaron Kwok Fu-Shing, Hong Kong singer, born in Hong Kong
  • 1965-12-08 Carina Lau, Hong Kong actress and singer (Days of Being Wild), born in Suzhou, China
  • 1966-01-08 Loretta Lee [Lee Lai Chan], Chinese actress (Happy Ghost), born in British Hong Kong
  • 1966-07-30 Irene Wan, Hong Kong actress, born in Hong Kong
  • 1966-08-15 Shirley Kwan [Kwan Suk Yee] Chinese Canto-pop singer ("Happy Are Those In Love"), born in Hong Kong
  • 1966-12-11 Leon Lai, Chinese-born Hong Kong actor and singer, born in Beijing, China
  • 1967-01-27 Byron Mann, Hong Kong actor
  • 1967-01-28 Jan Lamb, Hong Kong disc jockey & stand-up comedian
  • 1967-01-31 Joey Wong, Taiwanese Hong Kong actress (A Chinese Ghost Story), born in Taipei, Taiwan
  • 1967-02-07 Sharla Cheung Man, Hong Kong actress (All For the Winner), born in Shanghai, China
  • 1967-07-08 Jordan Chan, Hong Kong actor and singer
  • 1967-08-12 Andy Hui, Hong Kong actor and singer
  • 1967-10-04 Ekin Cheng Yee-Kin, Hong Kong actor and Cantopop singer, born in Hong Kong
  • 1967-10-20 Marco Ngai, Hong Kong actor, born in Hsinchu, Taiwan
  • 1967-11-10 Vivian Chow, Hong Kong Cantopop singer-songwriter and actress, born in Hong Kong
  • 1967-12-06 Hacken Lee, Hong Kong singer (House of Cards), born in British Hong Kong
  • 1967-12-19 Frankie Lam, Hong Kong actor
  • 1968-05-16 Chingmy Yau, Hong Kong actress (Naked Killer), born in Hong Kong
  • 1969-08-08 Faye Wong, Hong Kong cantopop singer-songwriter and actress (Chungking Express), born in Beijing, China
  • 1970-05-10 Sally Phillips, English comedian and actress (Smack the Pony, Miranda), born in Hong Kong
  • 1970-06-02 Karen Mok, Hong Kong actress and singer (Around the World in 80 Days), born in Hong Kong
  • 1970-06-20 Michelle Reis, Hong Kong actress (Fallen Angels), born in Hong Kong
  • 1971-04-16 Moses Chan, Hong Kong actor (Heart of Greed), born in Hong Kong
  • 1971-08-27 Julian Cheung Chi-Lam, singer (A Modern Love Story) and actor (Return Of The Cuckoo), born in North Point, British Hong Kong
  • 1971-09-04 Anita Yuen, Hong Kong actress, born in Hong Kong
  • 1971-10-01 Gigi Lai, Hong Kong actress and business woman, born in Hong Kong
  • 1971-10-25 Athena Chu, Hong Kong actress (A Chinese Odyssey), born in Hong Kong
  • 1971-11-05 Edmond Leung, Hong Kong singer and songwriter, born in British Hong Kong
  • 1972-04-18 Xu Zheng, Chinese actor and director (Lost on Hong Kong), born in Shanghai, China
  • 1972-08-18 Leo Ku, Hong Kong singer, born in British Hong Kong
  • 1972-08-19 Sammi Cheng [Sau Man], Hong Kong singer and actress (Internal Affairs), born in Hong Kong
  • 1972-09-13 Kelly Chen [Vivian Chen Wai-man], Hong Kong Cantopop singer (Starry Dreams of Love), and actress, born in Hong Kong
  • 1973-01-13 Gloria Yip, Hong Kong actor
  • 1973-02-21 Bowie Tsang, Taiwanese singer & TV host, born in Hong Kong
  • 1973-09-17 Ada Choi, Hong Kong actress (Emperesses in the Palace), born in Hong Kong
  • 1973-12-03 Sammy Leung, Hong Kong disc jockey
  • 1974-04-24 Comedy Dave [David Lloyd Vitty], British radio personality, born in Hong Kong
  • 1974-05-23 Charlie Yeung, Hong Kong actress and singer (Seven Swords), born in Hong Kong
  • 1974-10-13 Hawick Lau, Hong Kong Chinese actor (Sealed with a Kiss) and singer, born in Hong Kong
  • 1976-03-25 Gigi Leung, Hong Kong actress and singer (Tempting Heart), born in Hong Kong
  • 1979-07-09 Ella Koon [Yun-na], Hong Kong Canto-pop singer and actress of Hakka heritage, born in Tahita, French Polynesia
  • 1979-07-31 Jade Kwan, Hong Kong singer, born in Hong Kong
  • 1979-08-30 Niki Chow, Hong Kong actress and singer, born in Hong Kong
  • 1979-08-30 Tavia Yeung, Hong Kong actress
  • 1979-09-02 Ron Ng, Hong Kong actor
  • 1980-02-14 Michelle Ye, Chinese actress & producer, born in Hangzhou, China
  • 1980-02-26 Alex Fong, Hong Kong singer, born in British Hong Kong
  • 1980-03-25 Carrie Lam, Hong Kong actress

Famous Weddings

Manuel L. Quezon

1918-12-17 Philippine Senator (and later 2nd President) Manuel L. Quezon (40) weds first cousin Aurora Aragon (30) in Hong Kong

Bruce Lee

1964-08-17 Bruce Lee (23), Hong Kong and American martial artist and actor, weds Linda Emery (19), teacher


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Famous Deaths

Bruce Lee

1973-07-20 Bruce Lee [Lee Yuen Kam], Hong Kong and American martial artist and actor (Enter the Dragon), dies at 32

  • 1986-12-05 Sir Edward Youde, Governor of Hong Kong (b. 1924)
  • 1994-05-12 Helen Lee Mai, Hong Kong actress, dies at 63
  • 2002-10-18 Roman Tam, Hong Kong singer (b. 1950)
  • 2003-04-01 Leslie Cheung, Hong Kong actor, singer and composer (Farewell My Concubine), commits suicide at 46
  • 2003-12-30 Anita Mui, Hong Kong Cantopop singer and actress, "Madonna of the East", dies of cancer at 40
  • 2004-11-24 Wong Jim, Hong Kong TV theme song and Canto-pop songwriter, and actor, dies of lung cancer at 64
  • 2008-02-19 Lydia Shum, Hong Kong comedian and actress (b. 1945)
  • 2009-11-24 Chan Hung Lit, Hong Kong actor (b. 1943)
  • 2010-02-16 Wan Chi Keung, Hong Kong soccer player and actor. (b. 1956)
  • 2011-01-02 Szeto Wah, Hong Kong politician & educationalist, dies at 79
  • 2018-11-02 Raymond Chow, Hong Kong film producer, popularized martial arts worldwide, dies at 91