Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Lim Pang Kiat (Bukit Brown)

To all concerned - Chinese found Dead near Godown was the headline of the article dated Tuesday, January 19, 1937. The article went on to reveal a well dressed Chinese man was found dead by a godown in Prince Edward Road on Sunday night. In his pocket was a letter addressed, "To all concerned" and near him was a bottle with dark liquid in it. The contents of the letter and liquid was not mentioned and remains a mystery.

The person was later identified as Lim Pang Kiat, a clerk with British American Tobacco Company. The article described him as being worried since the beginning of the year and was given 1 week leave from work. On Sunday, 4 pm he was last seen leaving to visit the dispensary.
Tomb of Lim Pang Kiat
Lim Pang Kiat passed away at the age of 29 on January 17, 1937. On his tomb is listed the name of his son, Lim Peng Huat and a daughter. He is buried in Bukit Brown, Hill 4 Division A.

To all concerned. (1937, January 19). The Singapore Free Press

Sunday, November 09, 2014

Birdwatching in Bidadari ( November 9, 2014)

Found time to visit Bidadari today. All around i can make out signs of development starting to envelop the whole place. The Christian portion of Bidadari has already been hoarded, from as far as i can see. I didn't spend the entire morning here as i had other plans for the day but nevertheless was happy to capture some nature shots from this short visit.

Variable Squirrel 
Tiger Shrike

Tiger Shrike 
Jacaranda flowers 
Albizia trees grows very fast on disturbed or wastelands and are seen as a "poor mother nature's" alternative to forested trees that take many decades to mature. However the problem with Albizia trees are their branches are prone to breakage and shallow roots make the tree prone to collapse especially during heavy torrential rains. This factors deemed this trees unsuitable for curated parks but this very trees attract the birds as its softwood harbors pulpa and other grubs.

Dead Albizia trunk

Close up of the dead Albizia trunk 

Moss on Albizia tree 

While exploring Bidadari i came across more Malay Muslim headstone underneath a tree reminding bird watchers and nature lovers that this place was once a cemetery.

Batam Brick (lining the drainage) 

Sarong cloth left behind by ? 

Goodbye Bidadari 

See also previous post on Bidadari :
Birdwatching in Bidadari - Jambu Fruit Dove ( December 6 ), posted on December 6, 2013
Birdwatching in Bidadari ( November 3), posted on November 3, 2013
Weaving through Bidadari (Muslim Cemetery), posted on October 17, 2013
Weaving through Bidadari (Alkaff Gardens and Lake), posted on October 8, 2013
Weaving through Bidadari (Birdwatching), posted on October 14, 2013
Bidadari (17 December), posted on December 18, 2012
Saving Bidadari, posted on December 5, 2012
Bidadari (7 December), posted on December 9, 2012
Bidadari (18 November), posted on November 18, 2012

Friday, November 07, 2014

Cheang Jim Kheng (Bukit Brown)

Cheang Jim Kheng is the third son of Chinese Pioneer, Cheang Hong Lim. Cheang Jim Kheng was a joint owner of the Gambier and Pepper Farmers under Chop Hup Seng and Co together with Tan Tye Choon.

Cheang Jim Kheng passsed away at the age of 64 on January 7, 1939 at No 146 Kim Seng Road. He is survived by his son, Cheang Peng Moh, 1 daughter-in-law, 5 daughters, 3 son-in-laws ( Lim Yong Koon, Koh Chong Teck, Chiong Tiong San ) and grandchildren. Where is Cheang Jim Kheng buried? Likely together with the Cheang family in Alexandra but after the area was redeveloped, i am not sure.

Madam Tan Hong Neo ( 陳鳯娘 ) passed away on July 4, 1956 at No 16, Lorong 27-A Geylang Road, leaving behind 1 son, Cheang Peng Moh, 4 daughters, Cheang Soh Gnoh, Cheang Soh Khim, Cheang Soh Mui, Cheang Soh Tin ; 1 granddaughter, Annie Cheang.
Madam Tan Hong Neo ( Mrs Cheang Jim Kheng)
Madam Tan Hong Neo ( Mrs Cheang Jim Kheng) tomb is affected by the highway and is already exhumed. Her peg number was 1221.

Madam Tan Han Hong Neo ( Mrs Cheang Jim Kheng)
There is a road named after Cheang Jim Kheng during the Straits Colonial period and it was eventually changed in 1914 to Covent Alley. The road has already been expunged.

Incomplete Accounts. (1910, March 16). The Singapore Free Press
Advertisement. (1914, November 5). The Straits Times
Grave No 1221 [website] The Bukit Brown Documentation Cemetery Project

Wednesday, November 05, 2014

Lim Lian Quee (Bukit Brown)

More commonly known to the Bukit Brown volunteers as the "Triple Tomb of Lim", this beautiful and ornate triple tomb bears the headstones of Madam Ong Thiam Neo, his son Lim Lian Quee (林连贵) and his wife.  Lim Lian Quee's family was from Zhao'an county, Fujian. Born in Singapore, Lim Lian Quee receiving initially a Chinese education, before studying in Raffles Institution. As his father passed away when he was still studying, he left school and found work in the Public Works Department. Subsequently, he founded a motorcar firm and worked there as the general manager and expanded his business into rubber. His trading company was under the name, Lianquee Trading Co.
Lim Lian Quee (林连贵)
Chong Nam School
Lim Lian Quee was one of the key pioneers who help fund Chong Nam school and played a leading role in raising funds for the school. He was President of the school's board for many years. In addition, he contributed to many philantropic causes such as schools, hospitals, Geylang Fire Relief fund and China Famine Fund, Malayan Flood Relief Fund

Lim Lian Quee was the President of the Chinese Friendly Association, a Chinese social and sports club in November, 1924 after its formation in 1923. His residence was 104-B Balestier Road. The Patron of the association was Messrs. Ong Chwee Taw and Chew Lai Hoe.

Madam Ong Thiam Neo

Triple tomb of Lim 
Lim Lian Quee's tomb erected in 1927
Mr Lim Lian Quee passed away at the age of 76 on April 10, 1967 and his ashes was interred beside his mother's tomb in April 16, 1967.

Mrs Lim Lian Quee nee Wee Kim Chee passed away in October 7, 1979 at the age of 90, leaving behind sons, Lim Teck Seng, Lim Teck Kee and Lim Teck Ann, daughters; Lim Cheng Hiang, Lim Hoon Hiang, 4 daughter-in laws (Wee Lian Kee, Woo Kah Yee, Low Geok Choo, Tey Ah En), 1 son-in-law (Charlie Teo Chin Huat) , 17 grandchildren, 4 grand daughters-in-law, one grandson-in-law, 4 great grandsons. The cortege left 17B Block 28 Marine Crescent for Mt Vernon. Madam Wee Kim Chee is not buried in Bukit Brown.

Mother: Ong Thiam Neo
Madam Ong Thiam Neo passed away at the age of 66 on July 16, 1926 at her son's residence in No 104-B Balestier Road. She leaves behind two sons, Lim Chwee Pheow and Lim Lian Quee, 2 daughter-in-laws, 9 grandchildren to mourn her loss. Her burial took place on July 25, 1926.
The names listed on the tomb included: sons: Lim Chwee Pheow, Lim Lian Quee. Grandsons: Lim Teck Seng, Lim Teck Kee. Grand daughters: Lim Chye Hiang, Lim Cheng Hiang, Lim Lai Hiang, Lim Swee Hiang,Lim Bee Hiang

Ornate features of the Triple tomb
Will find time to write more about the ornate elements of this tomb in another article.

Interesting tombs nearby
Lee Hoon Leong
Kung Tian Siong and family
Tan Hap Leong
Yeo Bian Chuan

[research on-going]

Untitled. (1924, November 3). The Straits Times.
Chong Nam School Building Fund. (1925, September 14). The Singapore Free Press
Deaths. (1926, July 23). The Straits Times
Untitled. (1927, February 8). The Straits Times.
Deaths. (1979, October 8). The Straits Times
Lim Lian Quee Biography from Collected Biographies of Nanyang Chinese. 

Saturday, November 01, 2014

Khoo Tiong Poh and family (Penang)

Khoo Tiong Poh / Khoo Teong Poh  邱忠波 was the eldest son of Khoo Eng Chye 邱应财 . Born in China, Khoo Tiong Poh came to the Straits Settlement when he was 22 years of age. He went on to be a prominent shipping figure and leader among the Hokkien community. In November 1874, after being in business as partner in chop Teong Ho, Market Street, Khoo Tiong Poh decided to leave and partner with Rajah Wichit of Phya Puket to become senior partner of a prominent shipping company called Bun Hin and Co, based in Malacca Street, with offices in Penang, Hong Kong, Swatow and Amoy. He was also a partner in Ann Bee and Co. (a shipchandlery business). He own steamships such as Cheang Hock Kian, Carisbrooke, Pearl and Petrel. From the Straits Directory, 1881, Khoo Teong Poh was a partner in the Opium and Spirit Farm.
source: Singapore Straits Directory 1881
source: Singapore Straits Directory 1881 
source: NewspaperSG
Khoo Tiong Poh died at the age of 62 on 1 March, 1892 after a prolong illness and was buried in Penang , his remains shipped by s.s. Cheang Chew to be buried in his plantation near Batu Lanchang. Khoo Tiong Poh had 3 wives (Yeoh Siew Kim, Tan Poo Neo, and Tio Oo Neo) and 8 sons (Khoo Geen Soon alias Khoo Phee Soon, Khoo Geen Haw, Khoo Geen Keat, Khoo Geen Lek alias Khoo Mah Lek, Khoo Geen Choe, Khoo Geen Yew, Khoo Geen Tah, and, Khoo Geen Teow), and 4 daughters (Khoo Sor Pek, Khoo Sor Tin, Khoo Sor Gan, and Khoo Sor Lan).

source: NewspaperSG
Khoo Tiong Poh and Madam Yeoh Siew Kim
Khoo Tiong Poh's tomb today. On the left is the caretaker's house
On his tomb, engraved is a Qing title conferred to him by the Qing Government. There was also a report in the Local Advertiser, dated March 15, 1892 that Khoo Tiong Poh funeral expense was estimated to be $15,000.
source: NewspaperSG

Family Tussle and Disputed Property
After the death of Khoo Tiong Poh, there were multi-claims for his assets and estates and cash of $250, 950.87  from plaintiffs consisting of Tan Poo Neo and Khoo Gin Keat and defendants consisting of Khoo Phee Soon, Khoo Mah Lek, Khoo Gin Cho, Khoo Teong Pan and Yeoh Siew Kem Neo. The estate of the late Khoo Tiong Poh was outstanding indeed with houses and land all over Singapore ! It was said that his estates in Singapore, Penang, Swatow and Amoy was worth over $2 million.
source: NewspaperSG

Madam Khoo Sor Tin (daughter of Khoo Tiong Poh) near Khoo Tiong Poh's tomb
Bukit Brown connection
Mrs Khoo Tiong Poh (Tio Oo Neo), Khoo Phee Soon , his wife and his sons Khoo Peck Siew and Khoo Peck Lock are some of the personalities i know that are /were buried in Bukit Brown.

Mrs Khoo Tiong Poh( possibly Madam Tio Oo Neo)
Khoo Phee Soon died in 5th March 1939 at his residence in No. 146 Carpmael Street and is buried in Block 4 Division C. He left behind 5 sons, Khoo Peck Hock, Khoo Peck Enh, Khoo Peck Guan, Khoo Peck Cheng and Khoo Peck Khye, 2 daughters ; Khoo Eng Phaik ( Mrs Chua Kwee Seng) , Khoo Eng Yan  (Mrs Chia Keng Teow) and 2 son-in laws.

Khoo Phee Soon's tomb in Bukit Brown
Khoo Phee Soon 

Mrs Khoo Phee Soon 
One of Khoo Phee Soon's sons, Khoo Peck Lock (1889-135) died before him and his name was not mentioned in the tombstone. Khoo Peck Lock married Ong Boey Neo, daughter of Ong Sam Leong, and he was the secretary of New World before he died.

Khoo Peck Lock, whose residence is in No 46 East Coast Road died on 20 September 1935 at the age of 46, leaving behind is wife Ong Boey Neo (the only surviving sister of Ong Boon Tat and Ong Peck Hock) and three daughters (Khoo Gek Choo, Khoo Gek Khee, Khoo Gek Hiok). As a mark of respect, New World Amusement Park and all it shows were closed on the 20th September.  Ong Boey Neo died in April 1951. Both Khoo Peck Lock and Ong Boey Neo are also buried in Bukit Brown close to Ong Sam Leong's family cluster of Mr and Mrs Ong Sam Leong, Boon Tatt and Peng Hock.

Khoo Peck Lock 
There is a road in Tiong Bahru named after Khoo Tiong Poh.

Tiong Poh road 

[research on-going]

Advertisement. (1891, August 3). The Straits Times
The late Mr. Khoo Tiong Poh. (1892, March 3). The Singapore Free Press
Their names live on. (1955, July 18). The Singapore Free Press

Song, O. S. (1984). One hundred years' history of the Chinese in Singapore. E. Lee (Ed.). Singapore: Oxford University Press.

The Singapore and Straits directory for 1881, containing also directories of Sarawak, Labuan, Siam, Johore and the Protected Native States of the Malay Peninsula and an appendix. [website] BookSG

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Wee Eng Cheng and Family (Bukit Brown)

Wee Eng Cheng (黄永清) was a Straits born Chinese from the prominent Wee family. He is the great grandson of Wee Bin of Wee Bin & Co , merchant and shipowners. Wee Eng Cheng was a Director in the Ho Hong Bank and Chinese Commercial Bank. He held partnership in the Eng Hoe Kongsi of No 19 Church Street which dealt with Sago manufacturers and dealers before he sold it to his managing partner in 1920 and was the Vice-President of the Jin Hua Kok Association (1923)
Wee Eng Cheng (source: NUS Museum-Dressing the Baba)
Wee Eng Cheng passed away on May 3, 1928 at the age of 34. Lim Peng Mau and Madam Goh Boh Tan (mother of Wee Eng Cheng ) were appointed the joint trustees of the estate in 1928. Wee Eng Cheng left behind valuable landed property in Singapore and cash in the sum of $97, 252 in Ho Hong Co and in the bank. His wife, Madam Ang Peng Neo passed away on May 1929.

His son, Wee Seck Hock was a beneficiary of the estate and took to court to remove Lim Peng Mau and Madam Goh Boh Tan as trustees and to appoint a new trustee. What exactly happen to the case is not known to me.

Wee Seck Hock passed away January 12, 1972 at the age of 54. He is survived by his widow, 2 sons and mother. The cortege left from 157 Neil Road. His two sons, Wee Lin and Wee Sun later agreed to sell the family home to National University of Singapore (NUS) in 2005. With a memorial gift from Agnes Tan (the daughter of Tan Cheng Lock ) , NUS was able to purchase, restore and turn it to a museum today known as The Baba House.

Wee Eng Cheng (黄永清) (peg 1497) and Ang Peng Neo (洪平娘) (peg 1496) tombs have already been exhumed.

Wee Eng Cheng (Bukit Brown)

Ang Peng Neo 

Great Grandfather: Wee Bin
Wee Bin was born in China in 1823 and began trading with various houses in Bali (under Dutch control) and became the biggest importer of products from that port that included all kind of earthware. It went on to built a substantial fleet vessel of over 20 for the Chinese and Dutch trade, and the merchant and shipowners business grew to become Wee Bin & Co, chop Hong Guan,located at Market Street. Wee Bin was twice married, once to the daughter of Kiong Kong Tuan.

He died in 1868 at the age of 45, leaving behind one son, Wee Boon Teck and one daughter, Mrs Lim Ho Phuah.
Wee Bin and Wee Boon Teck  
Grandfather: Wee Boon Teck
Wee Boon Teck continued to improved the business of Wee Bin & Co. and yet found time to contribute to society by being on the Committee of the Po Leung Kuk (Society of Protection of Women and Girls) and Tan Tock Seng Hospital. He generously donated $4,000 and had a ward in Tan Tock Seng Hospital named after him by the Colonial Government. He died on September 22, 1888 at the age of 38.

Mrs. Wee Boon Teck passed away at the age of 68 on January 18, 1920 at No. 56-13 Neil Road. She is buried at Alexandra Road Cemetery. Among those mourning her lost are her son-in-law's; Lee Choon Guan (married Wee Guat Kim )  and Lim Peng Siang (married Wee Guat Choo), grandsons ; Lee Pang Seng, Lim Seow Kiew and Wee Eng Cheng (son of the late Wee Siang Tat).

Father: Wee Siang Tat
Wee Siang Tat (son of Wee Boon Teck) continued the business together with Lim Ho Puah. It was said that Wee Siang Tat was the one responsible for building the Wee family home that is now No 157 Neil Road in 1895, that eventually became the Baba House.

Wee Siang Tat was fond of music and was one of the original members of the Chinese Philomathic Society, who consists of Straits born Chinese who practiced regularly under Mr. Salzmann at "Siam House", North Bridge Road, the house of the late Mr. Tan Kim Ching. Wee Siang Tat died at the age of 26 in the year 1901. His only son, Wee Eng Cheng was 7 years only when Wee Siang Tat passed away.

The demise of Wee Bin & Co
The death of Wee Siang Tat in 1901 marks the transfer of the company to Wee Bin's son-in-law, Lim Ho Puah,( who was born in Amoy in 1841 and join Wee Bin & Co at a young age. His business acumen attracted the attention of his Towkay, Wee Bin who made him in son-in-law and eventual partner )  the sole surviving partner. Wee Bin & Co was liquidated in 1911 when majority of the business and large steamers were transferred to the able hands of Lim Peng Siang, the son of Lim Ho Puah who founded the Ho Hong Company, which included The Ho Hong Steamship Co. Ltd, The Ho Hong Oil Mills Co. Ltd, The Ho Hong Bank Ltd, The Ho Hong Portlands Cement Works Ltd, etc.

Lim Ho Puah and Lim Peng Siang 
Death. (1921, January 21). The Straits Times
Ho Hong Bank Ltd. (1924, April 16). The Singapore Free Press
Chinese Will Beneficiary Wants two new Trustees. (1936, April 15). The Singapore Press
Deaths. (1972, January 14). The Straits Times
Song, O. S. (1984). One hundred years' history of the Chinese in Singapore. E. Lee (Ed.). Singapore: Oxford University Press.
Knapp, R. (2013). Chinese Houses of Southeast Asia: The Eclectic Architecture of Sojourners and Settlers. Tuttle Publishing.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Khung Ngien Chew (Bukit Brown)

In Hill 2 D, plot 8, is a simple tomb with the inscription that when translated says simply "Here lies a poet by the name of Khung Ngien Chew".
Khung Ngien Chew the Poet 

Who is Khung Ngien Chew and what poetry did he wrote ? I am not sure as i am unable to research from Chinese resources, but from what i gathered from the death acknowledgements, he was a member of the Foochow Guild and Chinese Chamber of Commerce.

Khung Ngien Chew of the Chinese Chamber of Commerce passed away on January 5, 1927 at 21-6, Geylang Lorong 16, at the age of 58. He is survived by a widow, a younger brother, 2 sons, 1 daughter and many grandchildren. The widow of the late Mr Khung Ngien Chew and Messrs. Khung Siang Chew, Khung Yu Chang, Khung Choo Sik, Khung Choo Chuak and Lee Shan Ming of Batavia thanked the Foochow Guild, Chinese Chamber of Commerce, Sam San School, Lam Chong Association, Yew Aik Seah and friends for the wreaths, scrolls, banners, telegrams and letters of condolences as well as their kind attendances at the funeral of Mr. Khung Ngien Chew.

From the names above, the only lead i found out was of  Lee Shan Ming, who was a branch manager of the Ho Hong Bank who came from the Palembang branch (Sumatra, Indonesia) to set up the Seremban branch in Malaya in 1925 before being transferred to Singapore in 1926 before proceeding to Batavia. Lee Shan Ming who spoke good English was educated in Anglo Chinese School and a church speaker (possibly an elder ?).

Death. (1927, January 6).
Acknowledgements. (1927, January 18). The Straits Times.

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