Katya Knyazeva (avezink) wrote,
Katya Knyazeva

Kenlion, the Dabelsteins' residence

Following up on the previous post, I decided to make a separate entry for the garden residence of a wealthy German-British couple, Arthur and Harriett Dabelstein. The house was designed specially for them and called "Kenlion." It was located on the west side of tooday's Fumin Road. A more detailed investigation of the mansion's location and its later incarnations is here.

The head of the family, Arthur Dabelstein, Esq, was with the H. M. Schultz & Co. and several other firms. The family lived in this mansion until 1917. Arthur Dabelstein died in 1924.

Here is little Lionel Arthur Dabelstein in his donkey carriage. In 1934 he married Winifred Evelyn Waite.

Lionel's brother Kenneth E. John Ainsworth Dabelstein was his bridegroom at the wedding. A little over a year after this wedding, in September 1935, Kenneth – then a 40-year-old "popular Shanghai bachelor" – killed himself by putting a bullet through his heart. His mother Harriett was away in the US. Here he is, still a child, growing up at Kenlion:

The drawing room of the "Kenlion":

Stained-glass windows in the hall:

Later I found a beautiful rendering of this house in the 1906 issue of "Building News," set amid the famously picturesque downtown Shanghai mountains!

After 1917 the former Dabelsteins' villa housed the the American Columbia Country Club, the Russian cabaret Chateau des Fleurs and Shanghai's most important film studio Star Motion Picture Co., all of which I cover in this entry.

Tags: 1900s, french concession, investigation, russians

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