This site is a repository for much of the material that I have assembled as part of my ongoing research into the story of The Silver Bowl. Its focus is primarily on the families of Northern Ireland, but not exclusively. It follows these people - JACKSONs & OLIVERs & you-name-it - to Hong Kong, Canada, USA, Australia, South Africa and many other places. I simply follow the story wherever it goes.
WHY THIS STORY?: As a child, I had always looked up to The
Silver Bowl. Literally. All that I knew of its origins
was that it had been given by the Emperor of Japan to one of
our family members whose first name was "David". I
had also been told that its particular chrysanthemum design could
only be used by the Emperor. One of my jobs was to keep The Bowl
polished and to wash out the syrupy stains which resulted from
its use as a fruit bowl. Our fruit, such as it was, usually wasn't
so fresh to begin with.
During the 1950s The Bowl travelled from British Columbia, to
Manitoba and then on to North Bay, Ontario. From there, it travelled
to Longueuil and St. Bruno, Quebec, always tracing the path of
my father's career in the RCAF. Later, when our family moved overseas
for a five year posting in France, it went into storage - along
with two unemptied garbage cans and one teapot which had two sodden
bags of Orange Pekoe left inside for the duration.
Such was our life.
In tracing the story of The Bowl, I have discovered that the
early history of the Hongkong
Shanghai Bank was an integral part of our family history.
In fact, without the contributions of our ancestors, the bank
would probably have failed.
Dozens of its staff in the mid to late 1800s at senior levels
came from the families of small town Northern Irish bankers, linen
merchants and "gentleman farmers".
The story of these families, beginning with The
First Jacksons to come over with Oliver Cromwell, is also
the story of my ancestors - glories, warts and all. The pages on this web site tell the stories of their lives, stories
which I am still in the process of unearthing.