Thursday, July 3, 2008

Taiping in 1959

So, in the many things scattered on the floor for us to salvage was this photo of Bapak taken in 1959 with the rest of the staff of the Land and District office of Taiping. Bapak was 23 at the time and I guess in the prime of his life. Initially I was looking for someone with the songkok, but I guess he was not wearing one then.

"Hensem jugak bapak aku masa muda hehehe," was what I was thinking when I managed to locate him.

He was just a junior officer then I guess. The picture was taken to commemorate the departure of the District Officer, Mr Fowle as part of the Malayanisation of the civil service on Aug 27, 1959. That was the caption that was written on the picture, and Malayanisation is not a word we would use now.

I don't know the exact location of this building to be honest. In Taiping, there are hundreds of this type of building and some of them may still stand. I like the vertical swing window, it's great for ventilation and lighting and this is how a tropical building should be, and perhaps they were designed by the British, taking into account how the Malays built their kampung houses, especially on a stilt.

No worries about banjir I guess. But I do wonder about mosquito then.

Another point worth commenting, I guess the Malayanisation of the civil service started soon after Merdeka, though it took another two years for Taiping to replace the British officer. But the picture didn't tell us as to who took over as District Officer.


Well, the photo is now safe with me. I am going to scan them and store them where it is safe. At least I told mak I am taking this picture with me and told her I would return it.


  1. love it and please published more picture !!!!!

  2. Err, thank you, but how can I publish more pictures when there is nothing left of the 3 major photo albums that dated way back to the early 60s. Even my pics (many of them my solo pics as a baby and a kid) are gone. It was stolen by you-know-who. Why would she want my pics is anyone's guess.

  3. Hello Rahman,

    Very interesting photo of Commander Fulwar Rupert Craven Fowle taken with your father on his retirement.I have some details information of Fowle's career's in Malaya.Do you interested?.

    You can contact me at -

    Thank you and Selamat Hari Raya,

  4. Hi Rahman,The FRC Fowle's fullname - Fulwar Rupert Craven Fowle.