‘Ponies, Amahs and All That …’: Family Lives in China’s Treaty Ports

  • Donna Brunero


This chapter presents an overview of family life on the China coast with a strong emphasis on the early twentieth century, the heyday of the treaty port system. Focusing on the cartoons of Sapajou, the North China Herald’s famed cartoonist, the chapter draws attention to the ways that Sapajou depicted many of the concerns and elements of everyday life for foreign settler families in China and that this extends beyond the stereotype of the Shanghailander community. Through exploring material culture elements such as ponies, domestic help—the amah—houses and gardens, this chapter demonstrates the ways in which a transient community, namely the families of the Chinese Maritime Customs Service, created a sense of permanence and domestic respite on the China coast.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Donna Brunero
    • 1
  1. 1.National University of SingaporeSingaporeSingapore

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