Sunday, 26 January 2014

En Abdul Rahman bin Haji Talib (1916-1968) [5], Minister of Health (1962-64)

Visit to Penang clinic.
En Abdul Rahman bin Haji Talib was the 4th Minister of Health Malaysia.
Matron Mariah Chong Nyet Lin @ Mariah Che Lah was a matron at the Maternity Hospital in Penang.

These photos are from the collection of my maternal grandfather, Dr MJ Che Lah.

Matron Mariah Che Lah (left) and En Abdul Rahman bin Haji Talib (right).
From left: 3 unknown gentlemen, En Abdul Rahman bin Haji Talib, unknown man and Matron Mariah Che Lah.
Group photo: Matron Mariah Che Lah (2nd left) and En Abdul Rahman bin Haji Talib (5th right).

External links

Sunday, 12 January 2014

Colonial Secretary: Mr E.S. Hose (1871-1946)

 Written by Walid on rear of ppc: Arrival of the Honorable Mr. E. S. Hose, C.M.G. 1916. Written by Bapak on rear of ppc: Colonial Secretary (was once Secretary for Agriculture Malaya). Photograph belonged to Walid and Bapak.


Mr Edward Shaw Hose (1871-1946)

Edward Shaw Hose (1871-1946) is the son of the Right Rev. George Frederick Hose, once Bishop of Singapore and President of the MBRAS. Hose was born on 25 November 1871 and entered the Civil Service of the Federated Malay States in 1891 as a Junior Officer in Perak. He served with distinction in several capacities in the F.M.S., mostly in Perak, before being appointed Colonial Secretary in 1924. Hose retired in the early 1930s. Like his father, he was a religious man and was deeply connected all his life with church affairs. - 

1891: Entered Civil Service in FMS as Junior Officer at Perak
         Acting Financial Assistant, Kuala Kangsar

1892: Secretary to H. H. the Sultan

1893: Demarcation Officer for Kinta and Assistant District Magistrate, Kuala Kangsar

1894: (additional appointment) Financial Assistant, Kuala Kangsar

        Collector of Land Revenue at Krian
        Acting Collector of Land Revenue at Larut
        Acting Magistrate, Larut
        Acting Magistrate, Batang Padang

1897: Member of the Royal Asiatic Society (22 Nov 1897)

1898: Assistant Secretary to the Government


1904: Class III officer
         Acting Deputy Public Prosecutor
         Acting Second Magistrate and
         Acting Commissioner, Court of Requests Singapore


1904: Chairman of the Sanitary Board and Superintendent of Prisons  in October 1904

1912: Acting Commissioner of Trade and Customs
         Acting Auditor-General

1913: Acting Controller of Labour
         Acting Director of Agriculture

1916: District Officer of Lower Perak

1917: E.S. Hose, District Officer, Lower Perak (22 Nov 1897) .... refer JRAS 1917

1919: Class 1b officer, Director of Food Production F.M.S. and S.S. in addition

1919-20: Controller of Labour F.M.S. and S.S.
               retaining the Directorship of Food Production;
               then Deputy Food Controller of Malacca, in addition,
               and also Deputy Food Controller F.M.S.

1920: Food Controller in March 1920

1921: Acting Biritish Resident, Selangor and later Acting British Negri Sembilan

1922: Resident of Negri Sembilan on 4 February1922

1923: Chief Secreatry; bestowed C.M.G.

Malayan Saturday Post, 29 March 1924, Page 9
The Hon. Mr. E. S. Hose, C. M. G.

The Sarawak Gazette
Kuching, Monday, 2 August 1926, Vol. LVI, No. 875
Download from Pustaka Sarawak:

JOURNAL of the Straits Branch of the Royal Asiatic Society 
For the Year 1917.
Part 75. Proceedings pp. ixxxvi; Journal pp. 1 — 54, published; April 28th, 1917.
Part 76. Journal pp. 55—168, published August 30th, 1917.
Part 77. Journal pp. 169 — 276 with title page, published December 29th, 1917.
SINGAPORE: Printed at the Methodist Publishing House. 1917.

The Malaysian Branch of the Royal Asiatic Society
Monograph 22.. The MBRAS book of 1,600 Malay Proverbs with Explanations in English
Compiled by E.S. Hose. 195pp. Size: 140x220mm. Softcover.

Friday, 10 January 2014

Malayan Union: Sir Shenton Thomas

I have an old photograph of Sir Shenton Thomas in 1939, before the Malayan Union was formed. This photo belonged to my late grandfather, Mohd Yusope bin Haji Mohd Sharif, who was called Walid by his children. Walid was then an entomologist in Kuala Lumpur, and was a keen photographer. He had photographed a lot of things and events during his lifetime (1897-1954). After WWII in Malacca, Walid and his Malay men were against the Malayan Union and they had set up UMNO Melaka, and elsewhere, to fight back and hold on to a Malay-owned Tanah Melayu. Unfortunately, he passed away before Merdeka, after UMNO was formed in 1946.

Jawi caption: Tuan Gabenor Shenton Thomas 1939.
Rear of ppc: Governor of SS & FMS.
Photograph and caption by Mohd Yusope bin Haji Mohd Sharif (Walid)
Enlarged portrait of Sir Shenton Thomas 1939.
Photograph by Walid.


Sir Thomas Shenton Whitelegge Thomas (1879-1962), GCMG, GCStJ, commonly known as Sir Shenton Thomas.

Shenton Thomas was born on 10 October 1879, in Southwark, London to The Rev Thomas William Thomas and his wife Charlotte Susanna (Susie) née Whitelegge. He was educated at St. John's School, Leatherhead and Queens' College, Cambridge.

Before he went to Malaya as the colonial administrator, Thomas was the Governor of Nyasaland from 1929 to 1932. He was made a Knight Grand Cross of the Most Distinguished Order of Saint Michael and Saint George (GCMG) in 1930.

He was the last Governor of the Straits Settlements. He served from 1934 to 1942 during which time World War II began.

Thomas was a prisoner-of-war during the Japanese occupation of Singapore, 15 February 1942 - 15 August 1945, having decided to stay in Singapore during the war. He was imprisoned in Cell 24 of Changi Prison along with Ernest Tipson.

After the war, Thomas remained as the 11th British High Commissioner in Malaya (9 November 1934 - 1 April 1946), until the Malayan Union was established and succeeded the British administration in the Straits Settlements (except for Singapore, which was created a separate colony), Federated Malay States and Unfederated Malay States, where the post of Governor-General of the Malayan Union was created.

Thomas established the King George V Park in Malaya (later renamed the National Park of Malaysia).

Today, Shenton Way, located in Singapore's business district, is named after him.

Thomas died on 15 January 1962, at his home in London. He was 82.


He married Lucy Marguerite (Daisy) Montgomery on 11 April 1912 at St Jude's Church, Kensington, London, with issue.

His daughter, Mary Bridget Thomas (1914 - 1998), born in Nairobi, Kenya, married 1st Lt-Col Jack Leslie Harry Lotinga, and married 2nd in 1965 Nicholas Eliot, 9th Earl of St Germans.

External link:

Thursday, 9 January 2014

Gamelan Music of Southeast Asia

Gamelan originates as a form of music to accompany deaths, funerals and burials. Today, gamelan has greatly evolved and is presented as a welcome repertoire. In countries of Southeast Asia (SEA), gamelan music is heard at almost every formal function involving community leaders. Most universities play gamelan at graduation ceremonies or convocations. Gamelan also accompanies traditional Malay dances such as in the Malay royal musical, Asmaradana and Mak Yong. Asmaradana depicts the fairytale marriage of a Malacca king to an underworld legendary princess, Puteri Gunung Ledang. Mak Yong was once a court performance, but is now performed for the public. Gamelan is taught at the universities in Malaysia. It is also taught at a local community hall in a rural village in Kelantan.

What does gamelan try to portray? Why is gamelan selected over other musical forms of the Malay communities in SEA? What is special about gamelan?

In today's health world, researchers are trying to use traditional music to overcome problems of depression. Gamelan is touted as one of those that can help patients to overcome depressive moods.

External links:

Wednesday, 8 January 2014

Javanese Wedding

I watched the YouTube video of a Javanese wedding and taught to share it here. The practice where the entire villagers come to offer help for a wedding reception is no longer a practice in modern Malay weddings. There are very few Malay weddings that still practise this very unique 'gotong royong' style of a Malay wedding and the Javanese wedding shows the best of this Malay spirit.

The music is a fusion of Malay and Arab dance music. The Arabian guitar or gambus is a notable musical element in this kind of performance.

Here's a bit of the song lyrics given under the comments for the video:
nyewo khemah yo nyewo pinggan , kerusi mejo kanggo jagongan khemah ey gawe payungan, orak kenek panas orak kene uthan nek ni noman ngiris si bawang , kacang kacang ngoncek i kentang ngirisi daging ngirisi ayam,? masak nang njero wachan godong pisang yo disuek i, wes lemper yo ngukus koci, dikukus yo digenengi wes mateng yo dicicipi 
iki cerito kisah wong mantu wong jowo yo wong melayu sedulure kabeh di undhang tonggo tonggone yo di kon rewang dino setu kito sinoman dino minggu kito kondangan lepas mangan kito pamitan nek salaman ora kosongan kondangan - undhang mangan kondangan - undhang mangan kondangan

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