About the Blogger


Welcome to my blog, and to my little segment about…me!

My name is Shahan Cheong. I am a blogger, writer, editor and major, major, major history buff, born and raised in Australia. Ever since the age of five, my main passions in life have always been history, antiques and writing. My university degrees include a BA, and an MA. in Arts (specifically, writing, publishing and editing), and aย major in History (Duuuuuh!!).

I am an unashamed and obsessive history buff. I love, live, and breathe history, almost to a fault. History, and antiques! Within these two domains, my brain runs absolutely rampant over almost any subject related to them. They are the two things I could never ever get bored of. I created this blog to share my twin passions with the rest of the world, to educate, inform, entertain and enjoy. And I hope that you do enjoy!


Yours Truly. Hi there!

I started this blog back in October of 2009, and it was originally called “Not Yet Published”, because at the time, I was an unknown, struggling writer. Not much has really changed!

The response to the content of my blog/s over the years has been overwhelming, and mostly, highly positive. I never imagined that my little online sanctuary would grow so much, or be read by so many people! At the time of this update (October, 2015), I’m getting over 1,000 hits a day on this blog, every single day of the week! Thank you to everybody who’s read, rated and commented.

If you have any questions or comments, feel free to rate and comment on my postings, or drop me an email about anything on my blog! Check the ‘Contact the Blogger’ page for those details.






55 thoughts on “About the Blogger

  1. Yvonne says:

    Hello Shahan I enjoyed looking around your site and was particularly interested in the account of the ‘Black Death’ Which will be referred to and have some significance in the novel I am writing. It is a fictional novel that begins with a particular problem faced by one of the main characters in the present day in the west of England that flits backwards to a storyline that had the answer to this problem in the 17th century. It therefore will have modern day elements, historical elements and as one of the historical characters is falsley accused of being a witch there is also a supernatural element and there are mysteries in the storyline that do not get revealed until the end of the novel. I might be looking for Beta readers when I have finished it if you are at all interested. It would be useful to me for someone with some historical knowledge to be able to cast their eye over it, in order to spot if there are any enormous gaffs in it. It might also be interesting to see what someone of a younger generation would make of it, I am 57 by the way, my two daughters are older than you and I also have a grandson.

    I have a humorous poetry and blog site as below if you are interested. However I have found that some of the humour does not travel well outside of England so various comments or votes are welcomed.

    I did think that your site might be a little better with a greater use of more sub categories in order to find things more easily.


    • scheong says:

      Hi Yvonne,

      Thank you very much for your comments. I’d be very happy to read over anything you might think fit to send to me. Let me know when you would want to send me excerpts, etc, of your story and I’ll be happy to look over it and give an opinion.

      I’m glad that you enjoyed yourself and that you found some useful information. I am updating this blog regularly, so be sure to check back every few days.

      And yes, I know my site COULD do with better categorisation. I apologise. I’m constantly editing stuff as I go through the blog each day and that includes trying to categorise things better so that people can find it.

  2. Yvonne says:

    Oh almost forgot would you mind if I posted a link to your site on my blog

  3. Pedro from Historum says:

    Most excellent. I see you have worked very hard at putting this blog together. You have a nice writing style and your eye for history has a focus that I like. I have no doubt that some day you will be published. I will watching the book stores for your work.

  4. Ravenor Bullen says:

    Thank you for your post on The Fedora Lounge. I’ve enjoyed looking through your blog. I live i Surabaya and am also interested in anything antiquated, especially the colonial period.

  5. Sarah says:

    I stumbled upon your blog for a 10th grade project information, and I am intrigued by your postings. Not only has it helped me with my project, but your writing almost has a sense of humor to it that I find hilarious. Since you want to become a writer, have you thought of posting any of your short stories on here? I would be very interested in reading them!

    • scheong says:

      Hi Sarah. I’m glad you’ve enjoyed my writings. Unfortunately, university time-constraints means that I’m unable to add to my blog as frequently as I used to. You can find a couple of my short stories under the “CREATIVE WRITING” area of my blog.

  6. A Bertillon says:

    Hey Shahan, ’tis A Bertillon here from HN. I stumbled across this site from the link in you signature there and have been slowly browsing through all the excellent articles you have posted here.

    I wish to add a huge: “Thank You!”, for all your efforts, both here and on HN!

  7. inkdip says:

    Hi Shahan, very nice blog and very interesting. I especially like the old slang words =) I think “gaslighting” and “squiffy” are older terms…the latter meaning drunk, but the former…no idea. I think it means to trick.
    Off to

  8. EFF from HN says:

    Hey Shahan, there’s a lot of great stuff you have here. Particularly, the medieval and WWI sections. Keep up the excellent work!

  9. Molly says:

    hey i would really like to use one of the photos that you have on one of your blogs as a reference for an illustration that i am doing for my illustration class. It would be awesome if you could email me back and we could talk about it. thanks ๐Ÿ™‚

  10. Bart says:

    Wonderful blog. I fell upon it via the FPN. You are definitely added to my must read list. Carry on.

    • scheong says:

      Hi Bart! Thanks. I do intend to add more articles about fountain pens and writing sometime in the near future. Check back every week or so. I usually update my blog every one or two weeks. What is your FPN username?

  11. Bart says:

    I go by my middle name, Barnett.
    Talk to you soon,

  12. Susan says:

    Hey Shahan, I just want to thank you for creating this wonderful website. You have NO idea how much this has helped me with my history stuff. Thank You! :))

    • scheong says:

      Thanks Susan. History has always been my chief passion (that and breathing). Still cooking up new ideas and hope to have more stuff up soon.

  13. Hi Scheong

    Loved your bodysnatcher article. Very cool.

    I am an author of historical fiction (published by Penguin US in Jan 2012) and am trying to research men’s clothing in 1748 or so, in South Carolina – a farmer, or wrangler or something non-“civilized”. What I need to know is whether he might have a pocket in his shirt.

    Thanks so much. I’m looking forward to browsing a ton more on your site!

    • scheong says:

      I doubt it. In the 1700s, your shirt was your undergarment. On top of that you wore a waistcoat and topcoat. So no, your shirt wouldn’t have had a pocket, not like today.

  14. Kenneth W. Whitney says:

    Hi Scheong,
    I was there, walking on the beach that morning (Im 88 years old)with my younger brother(now deceased) Pt. Pleasent NJ. My daughter ask me to write a Bio several years ago. I wrote stories about happenings as a method of telling them about my younger life. I was 15 at the time this tragedy occured. Thought you might like to hear about some other heros in this affair. This is what wrote in my Bio. I’m an engeener not an english major. Good luck in your studies..
    Whit In 1938 Rich and I were walking on the beach during a Northeaster (The wind direction with rain and wind for usually 3 days) when we noticed a ship about 5 or 6 miles off the shore line that was surrounded by smoke. Shortly thereafter Dad came running up the beach and told us that he had just heard on the radio that a ship by the name of Moro Castle was on fire and life boats were coming ashore in Sea Girt. We all went back to the house and Dad drove us to Sea Girt (about 5 or 6 mile north). We reach the turn off for the beach and found the coastal railroad gates had both been broken off and further when we reach the beach there were several hundred cars and it was closed off. We turned around and drove back to Point Pleasant and headed toward the ocean inlet that was called Manasquan Inlet. Our house was at the South end of Point Pleasant while the inlet was on the North end. The sights we saw will never be forgotten.
    Back of the inlet on both sides of the river were a number of fishing boats for hire to go out into ocean on daily trips. Most of these boats would only take two or three persons out for daily tours and would only take them out when the weather was calm as the inlet was dangerous during bad weather. The reason it was dangerous was the fact that on both sides of the inlet, about 200 feet apart there were jetties made of 4 to5 foot rocks protruding about a quarter of a mile out into the ocean. This was necessary to keep the deep channel open from the river to the ocean.
    We stayed around for about three hours watching these small boat go out empty to see them come back with people hanging all over them. The Coast Guard had a larger ship in the inlet to help the smaller ships get in with their precious load to the safety of the river. Ambulances were lined up along the road and were constantly going and coming as the small boats were emptied the people they had pulled out of the ocean. As soon as the small boats were emptied they turned around and headed back out inlet for another load. These skippers were brave as they took their small boats through the narrow inlet in very bad weather as they went to rescue those in the sea around the burning ship.

  15. Peter Hanchett says:

    You Sir are a great inspiration for the history that you share, and a writing style both informative and entertaining. Cheers to you

  16. Your blog is interesting! Being a history buff, I particularly like your blog posts about the Boston Molasses Flood and the British Workhouses. I like to blog about American, British and Canadian History. I am also a writer who dreams of getting published. I’ve written a children’s book about my great-grandma, who was born in a British Workhouse, called “I’m Just a Home Child”. I’d be interested in reading any other articles you write similar to the Boston Molasses Flood. Good luck with your publishing dream!

    • scheong says:

      Hi Linda, thanks muchly for your comments. I write a lot of articles about forgotten history of various kinds. Browse through my blog and take a look. Thanks for visiting! I update roughly once a month to once a week (depending on how much time I have and what I have to blog about).

  17. Sky Lee says:

    this is HELPFUL!!! ๐Ÿ™‚

  18. royclarenz says:

    Hello, Scheong, I found your blog when looking for some context for an obituary in today’s Times (London) on Countess Jellicoe, who has just died in her 90s. She had been a socialite in Shanghai before the Japanese invaded in 1937. She had known my mother (a White Russian, now deceased) who had escaped from Moscow in the Revolution, travelled first to London and then to Shanghai; and lived in the American Concession. My mother was interned by the Japanese in 1941, along with my father (British) and brother (born in Shanghai in 1941). She always spoke glowingly of the pre-war Shanghai and the high-life enjoyed by those in the International Settlement. Fascinating to find your description of it, an element of that city’s history I had not fully understood. Keep up your great work – you have a natural talent. Best regards, Roy

    • scheong says:

      Thanks, Roy. Modern Shanghai exists largely thanks to the foreign concessions that made up the International Settlement. Before they arrived, Shanghai was a TINY little city.

      The Settlement, as it was sometimes nicknamed, was one of the biggest western expat zones in Asia, along with Peking, Hong Kong, Saigon and Singapore. It was notorious for being a haven for all kinds of vice and underground culture, and it was very open to all comers. Russians immigrated to Shanghai in the 1910s during the Revolution, as you know. British, Jews, French, Germans and Japanese made up most of the rest of the Settlement, as well as, of course, a heavy smattering of local Chinese.

  19. No name provided says:

    I posted a comment on your Jack The Ripper page. You are a very thorough writer and clearly put a lot of effort into your writing and presentation. I will visit again to see if you are requesting more info. Good luck with your writing career!

  20. laura says:

    Hello Shahan, I have just dipped into your blog whilst researching Sherlock Holmes. Found the article about Victorian death rites interesting. I have some jet and live near Whitby in North Yorkshire where a lot of it was and still is made.
    Good luck in your dream to be a writer.

  21. Would you be interested in doing some creative writing for my website(s)? I make pens. I like your style. ๐Ÿ™‚


  22. LuAnn Poli says:

    Hi Shahan!
    Through a Google search, I came across one of your photos of a signet ring. Don’t know the etiquette quite yet, but I’d like to ask permission to use it in my blog. I would add your web address under it. Is this an acceptable thing to do in the blog world? Hoping so and that you won’t mind. I perused your blog and am so impressed with it! You are a wealth of information! As a beginner blogger, I hope to catch on and enjoy the process. Thank you for your consideration.

  23. ali says:

    Hello Mr. Cheong, I am a thirteen-year old girl in junior high and love using your blogs in my science and social studies reports. I love knowing that there is a reliable website around. Don’t worry! You are always included in the bibliography! Thanks again!

  24. Bart Ingraldi says:

    I’m glad that your efforts and work are benefiting your readers. Keep up the good work.

  25. Hi Shahan, I don’t want to be a spammer, but your blog instructions on servicing and restoring vintage Singers is from my quick scan this morning (I am supposed to be doing other stuff) is very impressive and I thought as you are in Australia you may be kind enough to mention my little business selling new parts and accessories for vintage sewing machines, Cyndy Kitt Productions, cyndykitt.com.au

    Keep up the good work,

  26. Tracy Burton says:

    Hi Shahan
    I stumbled upon your blog while doing research into the Victorian period for a project I’m working on. What an amazing treasure trove I’ve stumbled upon – your range of articles/eras is amazing and the amount of detail is really impressive. I’ve just signed up as a follower and look forward to reading future articles.

  27. Angie Blake says:

    I stumbled on this wonderful blog because I was doing some needed research on my novel. I’m writing a story about Elizabeth McBride. She’s a ghost and she’s telling her story. It’s about life after slavery in the late 1800’s. I would love it if you would have a look at it. I’m with a group called Booksie. The link is:
    That’s the link to my page and you can find the home page from there. I have to tell you that your blog has helped me a great deal with the way life was for them in the 1800’s. I will be keeping an eye on it and referring to it as much as necessary. Thanks for taking the time to put it up and keeping it updated! Love it!

    • scheong says:

      You’re very welcome, Angie! If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to post more comments. I’ll be happy to answer. You’ll find a great deal of information about life in the 1800s/1900s here on my blog. Just type the relevant terms into the search-box and you’ll find what you want.

  28. lornasmiith says:

    hi there,
    Loved your blog on The madness of king george!
    I am currently researching his decent into madness and was wondering how i would refference your blog? any ideas?
    Keep up the good work!

    • scheong says:

      Hi Lorna,

      There are reference-guides that you can find online about how to reference blogs. I haven’t done it in a while, but for formal referencing, you need to include the blogger, blog-title, title and link to the article, and date of publication, I believe. But I don’t remember in what order.

  29. Yi Chang says:

    Keep it up. Love reading good blogs like yours. Thanks for sharing.

  30. Nice project you got going ๐Ÿ™‚

    You have a new follower who wishes you a GREAT day and the BEST of lucks ๐Ÿ™‚

  31. Lilli says:

    Hi there tinkerman!

    I googlet after where I can find missing tooth letters to my vintage Corona typemachine. While searching here, I found your blog article about it! And I found you!

    Thank you for beeing you! Your kind of blog style and interest and the way you nerd about it, is quite unique! Keep up the good work; keep writing!

  32. carol edwards says:

    Have you done any research or writing into the period of the Rothschild’s?

  33. carol edwards says:

    Great blog..truly a find..I hope you’re next subject research report is on vintage cameras..http://www.ebay.com/itm/310997699651?ssPageName=STRK:MEWAX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1423.l2649

    thanks Carol, an avowed retronaut..

  34. Sharon says:

    What a wonderfully useful and interesting blog! I am writing a family story based on a set of letters between by my grandparents dating 1911 through 1913. I was looking for a definition of a “soap stove”–two of which apparently warmed my convalescing grandmother on cold days. Do you have a thought on that? And thank you a thousand times for your info on laundry. It was my grandmother’s undoing, and I now can certainly see why. I love cultural history too and think you are doing a great service for those of us who really want to understand “what it was like” to live in the shoes of our ancestors. I wish you every success in following your interests wherever they lead, and thank you so much for sharing your research.

  35. hollyrose2014 says:

    Dear Sheong, would you know how I can get my driver on my White 268 Model sewing machine fixed? I tt used to oscillate before I moved the zig zag lever to zero. I cleaned and oiled the machine and the motor runs fine except now I can’t sew. The needle goes up and down but the driver does not move. thanks in advance, Hollyrose2014.

  36. Dear Shahan, Enjoyed reading your excellent post on the Wooden Horse. In the concluding paragraphs, you had mentioned that you could not ascertain the birth and death records of Michael Codner, one of the three escapers. The error most researchers make is to presume that Codner was an Air Force officer. Actually, Second Lieutenant Michael Codner was an Army officer who was commissioned into the Royal Artillery in the British Army. He was captured at Medjez el Bab in Tunisia in December 1942 and sent by mistake from Rome to Stalag Luft III POW camp. He was born in Malaya on September 29, 1920 and died in an ambush by communist insurgents at Malaya on March 25, 1952. He had quit the Army after World War II and joined the civil service as an administrative official. Please see the link below :-


    Hope this is sufficient to help you to post an update in the ” Wooden Horse ” article and tie up an important loose end. Keep writing.


  37. WheelyBad says:

    Hi Shahan,

    New location duly noted! I hope the change to a new domain name will bring you more traffic as your posts are a joy to read. Being a relative latecomer to your work I am (slowly) working through your posts on the great many subjects you have written about as I love history (especially local history), I love the Sherlock Holmes mysteries and er… well… you know about the antiques and the sewing machines! I raise a virtual glass to toast your new home and to many more interesting and engaging articles by your good self.

    Best wishes,

    T x


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