Sunday, March 25, 2018

Tan Sian Keong and family (Bukit Brown)

Tan Sian Keong (1881-1941) was associated with chop Keat Bee and Co. and was also a Director of the Oversea-Chinese Bank, Limited. Oversea-Chinese Bank (OCB) was formed in 1919, with a paid-up capital of $5.25 million and its Board included many well known Chinese leaders including Dr. Lim Boon Keng (Chairman when it was first established), Lim Nee Soon (Chairman for several years), S.Q.Wong, Au Keng Chong, Tan Ean Kiam, Dr. S.C. Yin, Chua Hong Jian, Oei Teck Seng, Liew Hong Seck, Oei Yok Kie, Khoo Kok Wah, Yap Geok Song and others. In 1932, the directors of the Oversea-Chinese Bank (est. 1919), Ho Hong Bank (est. 1917) and the Chinese Commercial Bank (est. 1912) went into talks with merger in mind to strengthen the bank in the aftermath of the Great Depression. These talks led to the formation of the Oversea-Chinese Banking Corporation (OCBC), which was incorporated on 31 October 1932.
Tan Sian Keong and Seow Guan Neo

Oversea-Chinese Bank Board of Directors (1923)
Tan Peng Jin and Neo Yit Wah sprucing up the tomb of their grandparents 


Tan Sian Keong was listed as 61 years of age in the burial registrar when he passed away on 9 September 1941. He is buried in Block 3 Section A, plot 191A. Listed are the names of his wife, Seow Guan Neo and Lim Poh Toh, sons; Tan Hong Ghim, Tan Hong Piow, Tan Hong Teck, Tan Hong Koon, daughters; Tan Kheng Cheong, Tan Kheng Eng, Tan Kheng Tiew, grandsons;  Tan Peng Kian, Tan Peng Koon, Tan Peng Hin, Tan Peng Hui, granddaughter, Tan Hui Cheng.

Wife: Seow Guan Neo
From the oral accounts of Tan Sian Keong's grandson (Tan Peng Jin), Tan Sian Keong was born in China and came down to Singapore to build his career. His first wife, Seow Guan Neo was also born in China and had bounded feet. From the marriage of Tan Sian Keong and Seow Guan Neo, they had two boys; Tan Hong Ghim and Tan Hong Piow. From the marriage of Tan Sian Keong and his second wife, Lim Poh Toh they had two more boys; Tan Hong Teck and Tan Hong Koon and 3 daughters; Tan Kheng Cheong, Tan Kheng Eng, Tan Kheng Tiew. Tan Sian Keong was born on 20th June 1881  and passed away on 9th September 1941. His first wife, Seow Guan Neo was born on 27th March 1880 and passed away on 21st Jan 1940.

Wife: Lim Poh Toh (Madam Lim Toh Neo)
The tomb contains the name of Madam Lim Poh Toh but no date of birth and death. From the oral accounts of Tan Peng Jin, a grandson of Tan Sian Keong, her grandmother passed away after Bukit Brown was closed for burials. This is confirmed by an obituary notice i found stating Madam Lim Toh Neo alias Lim Poh Toh passed away at the age of 89 on 12 December 1978. She is survived by her sons: Tan Hong Teck and Tan Hong Koon; Daughters: Tan Kheng Cheong, Tan Kheng Eng and Tan Kheng Tiew, son-in-laws: Tay Eu Chee and Michael Yu Wen Peh; daughter-in-laws: Teo Choon Hwee, Maureen Lee and Doris Ko; 15 grandchildren and 18 great-grandchildren. The cortege left from 354 River Valley Road for Mount Vernon Crematorium.

Son: Tan Hong Ghim
Tan Hong Ghim studied in Raffles Institution and started his career as a clerk in Overseas Chinese Bank in 1920 and 7 years later became its sub-accountant. When OCBC formed in 1932. he was the assistant secretary. Tan Hong Ghim was the branch manager for several new banks opened at various years including the branch manager of the Malacca Street Branch (1955). There was a notice of marriage between Mr. Tan Hong Ghim of the Overseas Chinese Bank Ltd (eldest son of Mr and Mrs. Tan Sian Keong of Keat Bee and Co. ) to Miss Teo Hee Luan (eldest daughter of Mr and Mrs. Teo Chong Siong of Teo Guan Kee and Co.) The marriage will take place at Goh Loo Club at No.70-1 Club Street on 23 March 1923.
Tan Hong Ghim 

Tan Hong Ghim receiving his British Citizenship papers (1951)

Son: Tan Hong Piow
I do not have much information on Tan Hong Piow. However there is an obituary notice of Madam Teo Peck Toh nee Teo Choon Hwee who passed away on 16 June 1999 at the age of 92. She is the husband of Tan Hong Piow (listed as deceased).
Mrs Tan Hong Piow

Son:  Tan Hong Teck 
Tan Hong Teck passed away at the age of 78 on 3rd February 1999. He is survived by his wife; Maureen Lee. The surviving siblings are listed in the obituary noticed below.
Tan Hong Teck 
Son: Tan Hong Koon
Tan Hong Koon passed away at the age of 87 on 4 Dec 2012. His wife, Doris Ko Suat Ghee has already passed on. They are survived by sons; Tan Peng Lam, Albert, Tan Peng Jin, Daughters; Tan Hui Kenh, Tan Hui San, Son-in-law; Ting Peter; Daughter-in-law; Ong Siaw Pua, Maria, Neo Yit Wah. The grandchildren names include; Tan Liang Ann, Nicholas, Tan Wei Ching, Pamela, Tain Wei Kuan, Dena, Tan Wei Qiang, Christopher; God-granddaughter; Sim Xin Hui, Angelyn.
Tan Hong Koon

Daughter: Tan Kheng Eng
Tan Kheng Eng passed away at the age of 89 on 22 August 2007. From the obituary notice one can map also the family tree.
Tan Kheng Eng

[Research on-going]

Domestic Occurrence. (1923, March 14). Malaya Tribune, page 6.
Announcement. (1923, March 13). The Straits Times, page 8
Branch Manager. (1955, June 24). Singapore Standard, page 10
Deaths. (1978, December 14). The Straits Times, page 26
Untitled. (2007. August 23). The Straits Times, page 39
Untitled. (2012. December 5). The Straits Times, page 16

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