Saturday, 20 March 2010

(1) References

Here are useful coffee-table books which have relevant photos:

1) Malaya 500 Early Postcards by Professor Cheah Jin Seng of National University of Singapore (NUS). 2008. [Category: Malaysian History] ISBN 9789814155984 Coloured photos, hand-painted photos, sepia photos, b/w photos. Soft brown cover. Price: RM99 - available from Borders, Queensbay Mall, Penang

Short Notes:-
Pudu is a small tree
Kinta is noted for its timber
Brickfields Road in KL was renamed Jalan Tun Sambanthan
Race courses were named after Sir William Maxwell, British resident of Selangor & patron circa 1890s
The KL race course now sites the Petronas Twin Towers
Ampang Road was an early mining site
Part of the Selangor Museum was bombed by an American plane (stray bomb) in 1945
The Selangor Museum is the forerunner of Muzium Negara
St Mary's Church is at Jalan Raja - 2 postcards published by a Japanese, MS Nakajima circa 1920
Station Hotel, FMS Railway in KL used rattan furniture in its lounge
Tung Shin Chinese Maternity Hospital was built by Kapitan China Yap Kwan Seng using personal $$ in 1892 (page 24)
The Institute for Medical Research (IMR) at Jalan Pahang in KL was founded by Sir Frank Athelston Swettenham in 1900  for malaria & beri-beri research (page 24)
The caption reads ... entrance to the Government Hospital but Pauper Hospital, Kuala Lumpur is printed at the bottom of the postcard (page 23)
The Vagrant Ward is likely a free ward at the Government General Hospital in KL (page 23)
The European Hospital, FMS is sited on a hilltop - 2 photos by MS Nakajima circa 1920 (page 22)
The Carcosa (Government House) in KL was formerly the residence of the British Resident-General of the FMS, Sir Frank A. Swettenham. Now renamed Carcosa Sri Negara (page 21)
Photograph of HH Sultan Sir Alaeddin Sulaiman Shah (1898-1938) Sultan of Selangor & suite shows both Malay and British menswear (page 18)
Sikh bodyguards were on horseback in KL (page 18)
A horse carriage awaits in front of the Rest House in Gopeng (page 132)
The Sultan Idris College Dining Hall in Telok Anson (now Tajung Malim)  looks like a church interior (page 132) circa 1940

2)  Raffles. The Story of Singapore by Raymond Flower. Hardcover. 2007. Marshall Cavendish Editions. First published 1984 by Times Book International. Reprinted 1988, 1991, 2002 and 2007. ISBN-13 9789812614438  ISBN-10 9812614435

Short Notes:-
Two gold bracelets of the Majapahit Empire of Java were unearthed at Fort Canning in July 1928. The Majapahit Empire was from 1360 onward (page 2) til the fall of the Majapahit Empire to Parameswara, an Indian prince
Origin of the word Singapura could be a fusion of 2 words - singgah (stop-over) and pura (city) - a stop-over city (page 6). Singa means lion in Malay - Singapura is therefore lion city.
Singapore kings (1299-1413):
Sri Tri Buana (1299-1347) - sri is an Indian salutation; buana means world in old Malay
Paduka Sri Pikrama Wira (1347-1362) - paduka is an Indian salutation; wira means warrior in Malay
Sri Rana Wikerma (1362-1375)
Paduka Sri Raja (1375-1388) - raja is an Indian salutation; raja means ruler
Sri Sultan Iskandar Shah @ Parameswara (1388-1391) in Singapore & (1393-1413) in Malacca - he was an Indian prince who converted to Islam. Sultan is a a title or salutation and indicates a ruler. Iskandar is Alexander in English. Shah is a suffix for Iskandar, means the great. So, Parameswara the King of Malacca was named after Alexander the Great when he converted to Islam?
While Malacca rose to fame under Sri Sultan Iskandar Shah, Singapore disintegrated into a wasteland for sea-gypsies or sea pirates (lanun laut) to slaughter their captives
Munshi Abdullah wrote the account of Singapore being used by sea-pirates to slaughter humans
Throughout the Middle Ages, spices were brought from India via the desert in the Middle East to Europe (including Venice) by caravans
The Indian spice trade & trade route were precious to the Portuguese
A Portuguese Vasco da Gama reached India in 1498
A Portuguese Diego Lopez de Sequeira sailed from Lisbon to Malacca
The Portuguese probably took so much spices and this angered the Sultan's people?
Disagreement arose and Sri Sultan Iskandar Shah imprisoned some Portuguese sailors
A Portuguese D'Albuquerque came to rescue the imprisoned Portuguese sailors in Malacca in 1511
Sri Sultan Iskandar Shah used elephants & poisoned arrows to mitigate the Portuguese attack
The Portuguese used gunpowder and Malacca fell to the Portuguese within a week
There is no news as to what happened to Sri Sultan Iskandar Shah when Malacca fell to the Portuguese
The Portuguese ruled Malacca for 130 years (1511-1641)
King Manuel I ruled Portugal in 1515 and Malacca was a Portuguese colony
The Dutch East India Company was set up in 1602
The Dutch competed with the Portuguese for spice trade
The Dutch attacked Portuguese Malacca. Malacca came under Dutch rule from 1641 to 1856
The British attacked Dutch Malacca. Malacca came under British rule from 1856 to 1957
The first British naval vessel that came to the Straits of Malacca was the Edward Bonaventure
Admiral Edward Lancaster was the Bonaventure captain; Bonaventure sank with its seized goods and never returned to Great Britain
St Francis Xavier started his Christian mission in Malacca in the Malay Archipelago (he was competing with the Arabs who were spreading Islam)

Additional notes:
There are no mosques in Malacca city centre til today; the nearest mosque is Masjid Banda Hilir (now renamed Masjid An Nur) built by the Arabs
At most 10 generations of mixed Arab descendants lived in the vicinity of Masjid Banda Hilir in Malacca
Masjid An Nur is sited at the end of the Chinese Baba Nyonya row, on the seaward side of the road from Ujong Pasir to Malacca town
Banda Hilir is the capital city of Malacca.
Banda Hilir means beach city, city at the river mouth, city at the bay or city downstream as opposed to Banda Ulu
Banda Hilir is sited at the mouth of the Malacca River (Sungai Melaka) that opens into the Straits of Malacca
Banda Hilir could have well been named Banda Selat (straits city)
Chinese junks (tongkang) used to anchor in the Bay of Malacca

3)  Singapore. A Pictorial History 1819-2000 by Gretchen Liu. Hardcover. First published by Archipelago Press in 1999. Printed many times - 1999, 2000 (3 times), 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2008. ISBN-13 9789813018815  ISBN-10 981301881-X. Includes bromide sepia photos, b/w photos, coloured photos and carbon sketches.

Short Notes:-
Two pages of Munshi Abdullah's hand-writing in Jawi script (page 20)
The male labourers at the harbour had pointed hats and pigtails (pages 30-31)
Horse & hackney carriage of 1860s (page 42) - British transport?
An Indian boy grinding spices with a stone hand grinder (batu giling)(page 82)
The Babas & Nyonyas are different from the Chinese family
The manual fans had pleats instead of fan blades powered electrically (page 90)
The British people still wore their clothes their style in hot & humid Malaya
Cars looked like that used in Chitty-chitty Bang Bang (the movie)
The fire engine was a simple buggy
Offices were cluttered and full of books and files - open office concept
A jinrickshaw carrying a thin young man holding an umbrella (page 121)
An Indian man pulling a jinrickshaw carrying a British officer (page 122)
Features 3 British officers - MacKay, Makinson and Walker circa 1909 (page129)
Shows British officers in Malay clothes - kain sarong or kain basahan (page 131)
Indian labourers working to make roads (pages 134-135)
Coolies smoking opium (page 139)
Ward of old Tan Tock Seng Hospital with mosquito nets tucked neatly above each bed (page 167)
General Hospital ward in Singapore (page 185)
Floods in Singapore (pages 207 & 265))
Child labour in Singapore (page 217)
Singapore Malays (pages 232-234, 286, 300-301, 346, 382-383)
Postwar photos (pages 250-263)
Hospital scenes (pages 288-289)
Reading newspaper (page 292)
Maria Hertogh riots of 1 December 1950 (page 306)
Modern Singapore (1965-2000)
Phua Chu Kang (page 380)

Saturday, 6 March 2010

Leprosy care

Leprosy patients and sufferers (lepers) were shunned by the populace and segregated by health authorities.

In China, lepers were segregated in leper villages or boat colonies.

In British Malaya, lepers were kept at different places:

1) Pulau Jerejak Leprosarium off Penang island (from 1860s onward)

2) Kuala Lumpur Leper Asylum or Setapak Camp in KL (1922 til 1929)

3) Sungai Buloh Settlement (1930 til today)

In: Studies from the Institute for Medical Research, Federation of Malaya, Jubilee Volume No.25, The Institute for Medical Research 1900-1950, by various authors. Printed at the Government Press, Kuala Lumpur, 1951. Text on leprosy are mentioned on pages 252-257.

In: Doctors Extraordinaire by Ho Tak Ming. Published by the Perak Academy. 2nd edition, 2006. Chapter 15, Tuan Doctor, pages 197-206.

Personal communication with En Azman bin Abdul Majid, Unit Makmal, PKKN, Sungai Buloh. Friday, 6 July 2007

Ancient cure for leprosy?

Chaulmoogra oil & Chinese herbs

Leprosy is ta ma feng in Chinese, and kusta in Indian and Malay.

Leprosy had been known in China since the Chou Dynasty in 6th century BC. One of the disciples of Confucius died of leprosy.

The causative agent of leprosy is Mycobacterium leprae. It thrives in cool temperatures.  It is found in the Malayan tenggiling (armadillo) and damp soil - eg soil of shaded areas of villages which are surrounded by big trees.

[The causative agent of tuberculosis, Mycobacterium tuberculosis, is also found in cool and damp soil in the villages.]

It is interesting to note that there was an ancient cure for leprosy. This ancient recipe was used on lepers in the chaulmoogra 'clinical trial' at the Institute for Medical Research (IMR) in Kuala Lumpur (KL) in 1916. The chaulmoogra oil and sodium gynocardate were tested. From 1925 to 1928, a variety of chaulmoogra oils and derivatives were tested.

The Chaulmoogra tree at Pusat Kawalan Kusta Negara (PKKN)? 

The chaulmoogra nut is described to resemble chestnuts. The oils were for topical use only (rubbed in).

Up til 1928, the standard treatment for leprosy was swallowing Chinese ground fresh kernels of the Malayan tree, pokok Setumpol (Hydrocarpus anthelmintica), known to the Chinese as Tai Foong Chee (great maple tree seeds). [These seeds or their ethyl derivatives were experimented at IMR.]

In 1948, Dr BD Molesworth started leprosy treatment with 4,4'-diaminodiphenylsulphone on 2,000 lepers at Sungei Buloh Settlement. By 1949, there were 1,600 lepers who received injected sulphone or oral sulphetrone.

In: Studies from the Institute for Medical Research, Federation of Malaya, Jubilee Volume No.25, The Institute for Medical Research 1900-1950, by various authors. Printed at the Government Press, Kuala Lumpur, 1951. Text on leprosy are mentioned on pages 252-257.

In: Doctors Extraordinaire by Ho Tak Ming. Published by the Perak Academy. 2nd edition, 2006. Chapter 15, Tuan Doctor, pages 197-206.

History of Leprosy. Standford University 

Personal communication with En Azman bin Abdul Majid, Unit Makmal, PKKN, Sungai Buloh. Friday, 6 July 2007

Victoria Institution

VI in KL
I visited my sister's home in Penang earlier this year. I had completed my work on my laptop for the night when I noticed a white plastic box underneath the staircase.  I asked my sister what it contained and she replied "Gambar lama". I asked her if I could see them and she said, "You last sekali belum tengok gambar lama ni. Adik-beradik yang lain semua dah tengok. Yang ni je tinggal dia orang dah tengok tapi tak nak (ambil). You ambik lah bawak balik Kelantan". I told her I didn't want to bring all the old photos home but I would look at them that night. I stayed up til past 3 am to select photos which I wanted. I told my sister not to throw away the old photos.

I was going through some old b/w prints belonging to (most probably) my paternal grandfather when I noticed three photos which (I think) is the Victoria Institution (VI) in Kuala Lumpur (KL). What was striking was there were no trees near the rear of the VI building. The photos were probably taken from a hill, nearby tall building or a tower by (most probably) my paternal grandfather.

Rear view of VI in 1950s

My paternal grandfather had sent photos of the VI to my father who was attending the Malayan Teachers' Training College at Kirkby, near Liverpool, Great Britain in 1951-1952.

The envelope that contained photos of the VI in 1950s.

This was the envelope that my paternal grandfather used to send photos of the VI to my father. The hand-writing on the envelope was my grandfather's. His name is written in the left bottom corner of the envelope. The envelope is of thick waxy brown paper and the stamps have come off. I have never seen this envelope and its contents before. I have only opened this envelope this year (2010), approximately a year after my father died in March 2009. My father never spoke of the VI nor this envelope. He was probably using the photos for class projects at Kirkby.