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The legacy of a devoted philanthropist

Add:1320 Beijing Rd W.

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There is an impressive building in a modern Art Deco style that now houses the Shanghai Institute of Pharmaceutical Industry. This was formerly the Henry Lester Institute for Medical Education and Research, which was completed in 1932. Henry Lester was a British architect, merchant and philanthropist who lived and worked in Shanghai for more than 50 years until his death in 1926. After working at the then Shanghai Municipal Council, he bought a stake in Shanghai Real Estate Agency. He eventually became the sole owner of the agency after his firm Lester, Johnson & Morris bought the remaining stake from Edwin Smith, who retired. The deal made Lester one of the richest merchants in Shanghai. In his will, he bequeathed most of his assets to various philanthropic projects including this institute.