Monday, September 16, 2013

Chua Swa Chwee (Bukit Brown)

Chua Swa Chwee
Mr Chua Swa Chwee was a fishing merchant, commission agents and fishing stake owners of various companies at Clyde Terrace Market under the following company names, Chop Sin Guan Huat, Chop Guan Hin, Chop Guan Seng and Chop Guan Kee. In a 1928 report of the Commission on Profiteering, i gained insight into Chua Swa Chwee expanse of  business. He handled about $20,000 worth of fish per month in the 1920's and has been in the fishing business for the past 22 years.

Other than being a successful businessman, Chua Swa Chwee was very active socially and involve in various community groups:
  • Trustee of Senh Chua Burial Ground Committee (Silat Road) 
  • Jin Hua Kok Association (Vice President)
  • Straits Bachelors' Physical Culture Club (Vice President) 
  • Oleh Oleh Party (Patron)
  • Wales Minstrels (President)
  • Gunung Sayang Association
  • Chinese Association (Vice President)
  • Young Men's Friendly Society (Vice President)
  • Chinese Swimming Club (Vice-President)
Wales Minstrels 1929
(source: NewspaperSG)
Chua Swa Chwee donated to Geylang Girls' School Building Fund, Wonosobo Relief Fund and in the arts arena contributed to various fund raising causes as well.
(source: NewspaperSG)
(source: NewspaperSG)
Chua Swa Chwee's tomb in  Bukit Brown
Death
Chua Swa Chwee passed away at the age of 62  on June 9, 1940, 9 pm at his house in No 250 Tembeling Road and is survived by his wife, 5 sons ( Chua Cheng Kang, Chua Cheng Whatt, Chua Cheng Guan, Chua Cheng Soon, Chua Cheng Kim ) and 3 daughters (Chua Hong Neo, Chua Siew Hong, Chua Bee Hong), 3 son-in-laws ( Tan Thiam Hock, Oh Kim Chiang and Khoo Cheng Kim)

In March 20, 1940 , (less than 3 months before his death) a notice to revoke the power of attorney of his eldest son, Chua Cheng Kang and remove his authority or power to manage the businesses of his father.
(source: NewspaperSG)

Family

The below shows the wedding of Mr Chua Cheng Guan (a science teacher attached to a Government school and third son of the late Mr and Mrs Chua Swa Chwee) and Miss Magdalene Yeo Kim Bee (only daughter of Mrs Yeo Guan Eam and the late Mr Yeo Guan Eam). The wedding took place in April 1958.
Chua Cheng Guan and Miss Yeo Kim Bee

The below shows the wedding of Mr. Tan Kim Hong, second son of Mr and Mrs Tan Yean Kay to Miss Chua Lian Neo, daughter of Mr and Mrs Chua Swa Chwee. However, i am unable to find on the tomb of Mr Chua Swa Chwee the name Miss Chua Lian Neo. Did she passed away before Mr Chua Swa Chwee or a case of mistaken research identity?
source: NewspaperSG


Chua Swa Chwee is buried in Hill 3, Division A, plot 271 1/2 and 255


Father of Chua Swa Chwee
Chua Swa Chwee father's tomb is located in Lao Sua and is beautifully engraved tomb with one pnel featuring monkey god. The date of death mentioned in the tomb was April 12, 1918. In an advertisement article in Malaya Tribune dated 11 October 1919, the tomb mason, Chop Chuan Hiap Seng put up an advertisement to thank Chua Swa Chwee for a generous tip of $800 (a princely sum in 1919)for the construction of the tomb you see below.






References
Profiteering Commission. (1920, December 25). The Singapore Free Press, page 7
Senh Chua Burial Ground. (1921, September 24). The Straits Times, page 10
Chinese Swimming Club. (1927, December 30). The Singapore Free Press, page 16
Wales Minstrels. (1935, March 16). The Straits Times, page 16
Chinese Association.(1939, April 2). The Straits Times, page 6
New Office Bearers of Oleh Oleh Party. (1940, February 19). The Straits Times, page 11
Advertisement. (1940, March 30). The Straits Times, page 2
Advertisement. (1940, June 12). The Straits Times, page 2

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