A definitive history of the Royal Navy’s China Station.
In the The Navy List for April 1864 the China Station was first shown as a separate Royal Navy Station . It remained as such until the outbreak of the Pacific War in December 1941 which was to signal the end of that era.
In addition to a precis of the lives and naval careers of each of the Commanders in Chief of the China Station, this volume also gives relevant information outlining something of the concurrent internal affairs of China and Japan. Both are very different but sad tales, the former in decline towards the end of the Manchu Ch’ing dynasty and then into the chaotic 1920’s and 1930’s, and the latter increasingly adopting a militaristic attitude which was to result in their disaster of the Pacific War of 1941-1945.
As a reminder of these days long gone are interwoven brief references to the British Consular Service. This is especially relevant for China, and for a shorter period for Japan during that era of extraterritoriality. Mention is also made of the British Colonial Service with whom, necessarily, the Navy worked very closely. In addition, being one important reason for it all, frequent references are made to a few British shipping and trading interests together with those of some other nations. All of these areas are linked together to give a definitive history of this very important Royal Navy Station.