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Alabaster, Sir Chaloner

Identity Statement

Reference code(s): GB 0102 MS 380451
Held at: School of Oriental and African Studies
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Full title: Alabaster, Sir Chaloner
Date(s): Created 1845-1898
Level of description: Collection (fonds)
Extent: 1 box
Name of creator(s): Alabaster | Sir | Chaloner Grenville | 1838-1898 | Knight | Consul-General at Canton


Administrative/Biographical history:

Chaloner Alabaster was born in 1838 at Barcombe in Bournemouth, and educated at King's College, London. In 1855 he was appointed student interpreter in China and served through the Opium wars and the Taiping Rebellion. He was Vice-Consul at Shanghai (1869-1873), and went on to become Consul General at Hankow (Wuhan) (1880-1886) and Canton (1886-1891). In 1892, the year of his retirement, he was knighted. He died in 1898. Sir Chaloner Alabaster was married in 1875, to Laura, daughter of Dr. D. J. MacGowan of New York.

His elder brother was a member of the China Consular Service from 1856 and his son became Attorney General in Hong Kong.


Scope and content/abstract:

Papers, 1845-1898, of Sir Chaloner Alabaster, including nine diaries, 1854-1875, which give accounts of his time in China. The later diaries are incomplete and contain far less detail than earlier volumes. Additional material, 1868-1898, includes papers and correspondence detailing his military service, accounts, obituaries and copies of 'A Chapter from the Chinese Gospel', by Alabaster, from Occasional Papers on Chinese Philosophy.

Access & Use

Language/scripts of material:

System of arrangement:

The diaries and additional material are arranged in chronological order.

Conditions governing access:


Conditions governing reproduction:

No publication without written permission. Apply to archivist in the first instance.

Finding aids:

Unpublished handlist.

Archival Information

Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition:

Donated in 1987.

Allied Materials

Related material:

National Register of Archives: Click here to view NRA record

Publication note:

Material used in P D Coates, The China Consuls (OUP, 1988).

Description Notes

Archivist's note:

Rules or conventions:

Date(s) of descriptions:
15 May 2000

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