Author Topic: William O'Neill China Post Office  (Read 134 times)

Offline adamjack

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William O'Neill China Post Office
« on: Tuesday 02 June 20 05:01 BST (UK) »
Hello
My relative William O'Neill went to work for the Imperial Post Office in China around 1901. He was born 22 Nov 1875 in Queensland, Australia and the last record of his employment with the Post & Telegraph Office in QLD is early 1901. I stumbled upon a mention online of who I think is him - W. O'Neill, Acting Commissioner of Jiangxi District, 9 Mar 1928.

I think he left China shortly after this as I believe I have found him as a passenger on a ship that embarked from Sydney and arrived in London on 18 July 1929. His occupation is listed as civil servant and his country of last permanent residence is recorded as China. His age is recorded as 53, which corresponds to his date of birth. I have also found him arriving into London a second time on 27 Apr 1932, country of last permanent residence again listed as China, occupation as retired trader and age as 56 which again matches his birth date. Interestingly, for country of intended future permanent residence, "foreign countries" is ticked, so he may have returned to China to live after this (Australia would have been included under one of the other options "Other parts of the British Empire", so I don't believe he returned there).

I have asked a friend who has Chinese friends living in China (but not near Nanjing) to contact the Second Historical Archives of China in Nanjing, Jiangsu province, who hold the personnel records of all foreign postal employees. However, they have not had any luck as yet as the archives have been closed for 7-8 years while staff digitise their material.

Does anyone have knowledge or experience of tracing relatives who lived in China? Thank you.

Online ShaunJ

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Re: William O'Neill China Post Office
« Reply #1 on: Tuesday 02 June 20 09:10 BST (UK) »
Some directory listings for him in Shanghai:

1909: https://tinyurl.com/ya8cd42f
1910: https://tinyurl.com/yd8xa8wp

He's not listed in my 1912 directory
UK Census info. Crown Copyright, from www.nationalarchives.gov.uk

Offline adamjack

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Re: William O'Neill China Post Office
« Reply #2 on: Tuesday 02 June 20 11:10 BST (UK) »
Thank you so much Shaun! Are there earlier and later editions of that directory?


Online ShaunJ

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Re: William O'Neill China Post Office
« Reply #3 on: Tuesday 02 June 20 11:21 BST (UK) »
There will be other editions of those directories. Finding them is the problem.

Here's another one, reprinted in 1969, not sure what year it's from. He's in Peking:

https://tinyurl.com/y7wcxdgg
UK Census info. Crown Copyright, from www.nationalarchives.gov.uk

Online ShaunJ

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Re: William O'Neill China Post Office
« Reply #4 on: Tuesday 02 June 20 11:40 BST (UK) »
This should keep you occupied for a while: https://www.chinafamilies.net/directories/
UK Census info. Crown Copyright, from www.nationalarchives.gov.uk

Online ShaunJ

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UK Census info. Crown Copyright, from www.nationalarchives.gov.uk

Offline adamjack

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Re: William O'Neill China Post Office
« Reply #6 on: Tuesday 02 June 20 13:48 BST (UK) »
Thank you so much again ShaunJ for the links to all those directories. I have looked through the directories from 1901-1908 but haven't found him so far, so the 1909 directory you found him in is the earliest so far. I had also stumbled upon the China Families website. I will give this new information to my friend to pass on to those in China who are enquiring with the archives on my behalf.