Welcome to the archived Singapore Heritage Society website. Please note that this blog will no longer be updated.

For the latest news and events in Singapore Heritage Society and the heritage circles in Singapore, please visit http://www.singaporeheritage.org/

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Dear SHS Members & Friends of SHS

Christmas is around the corner.  If you are looking for a exclusive gift for your loved ones, why not buy one of the lovely Royal Selangor Designer Pendants and contribute to the Singapore Heritage Society (SHS) at the same time.

Click to learn about the Royal Selangor The Designer Collection

In 2010 Royal Selangor invited Dick Lee, Eunice Olsen and David Tay to design pendants for its 125th Anniversary celebrations.  Only 1,000 pieces of each design were created.  The pendants cost S$90 each and 50% of the proceeds goes to the Singapore Heritage Society.

Selected designs created by Malaysian well-known personalities are available in Singapore too.  The pendants cost S$90 each and 50% of the proceeds will benefit Badan Warisan Malaysia (Heritage of Malaysia Trust).

Make your loved ones happy by buying a Designer Pendant from Royal Selangor and help the SHS to continue its good work in the preservation, transmission and promotion of Singapore’s history, heritage and identity.

These beautiful pendants are available exclusively at Royal Selangor’s flagship store at Clarke Quay.

Royal Selangor – Clarke Quay
Address: 3A River Valley Road #01-01, Singapore 179020
Opening hours: 9 am – 9 pm (daily)

Please click on the attached document to see the Designer Pendants.

The Singapore Heritage Society is a registered charity with IPC status. If you wish to make a direct donation to the Singapore Heritage Society, please send a cheque made payable to the “Singapore Heritage Society” to Wendy Chua, the SHS Admin Secretary at the address below.  Alternatively you can donate online via the Give2arts.sg portal at this URL: http://give2arts.sg/donorViewBeneficiary.aspx?id=krjlUxmdh10=

All donations made to charities with IPC status between 1 January 2011 to 31 December 2015 will qualify for 2.5 times tax deduction.

Here’s wishing everyone a Merry Christmas and a Very Happy New Year!

Best wishes
Dahlia Shamsuddin
President
Singapore Heritage Society

venue: The POD. Level 16, National Library. 100 Victoria Street
date | time: Saturday, 9 Jul 2011 | 3.00-5.00 pm
admission: Free and open to the public
enquiries: shs.secretary@gmail.com (Wendy)

The native plants of any country are indigenous species that naturally occur there and have evolved in that country over thousands or millions of years. Although Singapore has about 2,145 native species of vascular plants consisting of the fern allies, ferns, gymnosperms, and flowering plants, the landscaping in the urban area, such as streets, parks, gardens, and even rooftop gardens, is done mostly using non-native or exotic species, usually from Central or South America, Africa or other parts of Asia. This is a great shame since many Singaporean species are equally, if not more, attractive and suitable for planting in urban conditions. In this talk, the case will be made for “going native” and how to grow native plants. The native plants of Singapore are part of our natural heritage, so we should do our best to propagate, protect and preserve them for posterity.

Hugh TW Tan is a Singaporean Associate Professor of Botany at the Department of Biological Sciences, National University, and Deputy Director of the Raffles Museum of Biodiversity Research. His current areas of research include conservation biology, the horticultural use of native plants of Singapore, and urban agriculture. He has edited and/or written many books and book chapters on the biology of plants and natural history of Singapore, including The Natural Heritage of Singapore (3rd Edition), A Guide to Growing the Native Plants of Singapore, Growing at Your Doorstep: 35 Native Plants of Singapore (2nd Edition), A Guide to the Threatened Plants of Singapore, A Guide to the Orchids of Singapore (Revised Edition), A Guide to the Carnivorous Plants of Singapore, Plant Magic: Auspicious and Inauspicious Plants from around the World, etc.

Read PDF Brochure of The Native Plants of Singapore- Growing Your Natural Heritage- A talk by Dr Hugh Tan

In conjunction with the exhibition The Sufi and the Bearded Man

Saturday, 2 July 2011. 3-4.30pm. NUS Museum

To register, email: museum@nus.edu.sg
or call 6516 8429

In November 2009, the custodian of an erstwhile keramat received a notice calling upon him to remove his “open shed” from “State land”, a notice that was a milestone in the path of removing the shrine complex.  The talk attempts to explore key oral traditions that play an active role in preserving the historical memory of cults centered around keramats such as the “open shed” that were, and continue to be, believed as the resting place of  peripatetic saints celebrated for their miracles, learning and  lineages.  Such traditions, running through chains of transmission that linked anecdotes back to original storytellers, operate as of self-histories of cults that failed to inherit autobiographical  records of their saints or keramats.  The talk will also discuss how 19th century saints and shrines have been remembered in contemporary Singapore, often at the expense of ecstatic shrine cultures, Islam of the carnivalesque, the identity of the deceased saint, “Muslim” heritage, and architectural remains that connect place and memory.

Speaker:
Teren Sevea is a PhD Candidate at the University of California, Los Angeles. His research interests  include  Muslim  saints  and brotherhoods in  nineteenth century  Southeast Asia.  He is the co-editor of a forthcoming volume entitled  Sufism since the Eighteenth Century: Learning, Debate and Reform in Islam. He has also published articles on Muslim reformist connections between South and Southeast Asia.

Read PDF Brochure of The Sufi and the Bearded Man Talk- Dilemma of the Pious Storytelle​r- Preserving Sufis and Sacred Space in Singapore- A talk by Teren Sevea

NUS Museum
University  Cultural Centre
50 Kent Ridge Crescent
National University of Singapore
Singapore 119279
Tel: (65) 6516 8817
Fax: (65) 6778 3738
Email: 
museum@nus.edu.sg
Blog:
www.nusmuseum.blogspot.com

OPENING HOURS
10am – 7.30pm (Tuesdays – Saturdays)
10am – 6pm (Sundays)
Closed on Mondays and Public Holidays

meeting point: The Cenotaph, Connaught Drive
date | time: Saturday 25 Jun 2011 | 8.30 am
duration: 4 hours
requirements: Average fitness | Able to cycle | Wear proper shoes (no slippers or sandals)
cost: $60.00 (Members) | $80.00 (Others)
reservations: shs.secretary@gmail.com (Wendy).
This tour is limited to 15 persons.

Singapore’s civic and historic district is home to many of the nation’s iconic monuments. Each of these monuments represents a major milestone in Singapore’s journey from colony to nationhood. This innovative kick-scooter tour will take you through 4 phases of this journey:

  • colonial Singapore;
  • Singapore in World War II;
  • post-War colony;
  • and independence.

Starting at the Cenotaph, you will work your way across the Padang to the old City Hall and Supreme Court, up to the Old Parliament House, the Victoria Concert Hall and Victoria Theatre, and to the Asian Civilisations Museum where we will take a breather. From there, we cross Elgin Bridge to Boat Quay, on to Merlion Park, down the Esplanade and then back to the Cenotaph.

Xootr Kick Scooters are mobility devices made for adults. Developed in US in the late 1990s, it developed an international cult following rave product reviews in popular magazines like Wired, Time, Business Week and news providers like CNN, Wall Street Journal and CBS News. The product has 6 models and 2 patented parts. Riding a Xootr Kick Scooter is as easy as riding a bicycle and can accommodate riders up to 1.9m height and up to 120kg in weight. Each Scooter weighs less than 5kg, is foldable and looks like a cross between a skateboard and a bicycle.

Tony Tan is the owner of Betelbox Hostel in Joo Chiat Road, and one of Singapore’s most innovative and knowledgeable tour guides. Trained initially as an IT professional, Tony spent more than 7 years living abroad before deciding to return home to establish a hostel for avid backpackers like himself. A self-confessed travel-holic and gourmet, Tony has won awards for his groundbreaking tours of hidden parts of Singapore.

Among the most popular of these are his City by the Water Tour, his cycling tours and his fabled Joo Chiat Heritage Food tour.

The use of of kick-scooters to travel between monuments and sites of interest is yet another of Tony’s innovations. Tony is also a member of the Singapore Heritage Society’s executive committee.

venue: The Armenian Church, Hill Street
date | time: Saturday, 28 May 2011, 3.00 – 5.00pm
RSVP: http://shs-booklaunch.eventbrite.com/
equiries: shs.secretary@gmail.com (Wendy)

Programme
3.00 pm Guests to be seated
3.05 pm Speech by Dr Kevin YL Tan, President, SHS & Editor of Spaces for the Dead, 2011
3.20 pm Speech by Dr Liew Kai Khiun, convenor of Spaces for the Dead, 2001
3.30 pm Book launched. Tea and book signing
4.00 pm Interaction between SHS members & Exco followed by Q & A session
5.00 pm Event ends.

Seen primarily as final resting places, cemeteries are increasingly under threat from urban redevelopment in land-scarce Singapore. Regarded as ‘excess space’ by state planners, and as ‘taboo places’ by the local populace, the rich historical and cultural heritage of our cemeteries have remained largely unappreciated and hidden.

Today, there are about less than a dozen cemeteries left in Singapore. With the recent exhumation of major cemeteries like Bidadari Cemetery and Kong How Shua Cemetery, concerns have been raised about the status of cemeteries in Singapore.

Spaces of the Dead: A Case from the Living brings together various authors concerned with the need for conservation of cemeteries in Singapore. This book showcases cemeteries as spaces of historical, architectural and social merit through the writings and photo-journals of the authors. We hope it will serve as an initial step in generating greater interest in
and awareness of Singapore’s cemeteries.

Contributors
Kevin Blackburn • Goh Si Guim • Ho Choon Hiong • Ho Hua Chew • Hui Yew Foong • Michael Kam • Lindy Kerr • Clement Liew • Liew Kai Khiun • Edmund Lim Wee Kiat • John Miksic • Elizabeth McKenzie • Sally Oh Poh Wah • Scottie Perry • Liesel Strauss • Kevin YL Tan • Tan Boon Hui • Wan Meng Hao • Johannes Widodo • Sue Williams • Brenda SA Yeoh

Read PDF Brochure of Spaces for the Dead Book Launch

meeting point: Malay Heritage Centre (Sultan Gate entrance)
date | time: Saturday 21 May 2011 | 9.00 am
cost: $20.00 (Members); $35.00 (Others)
reservations: shs.secretary@gmail.com (Wendy).
This tour is limited to 20 persons.
Book early!!!

About Kampung Gelam
The area known as Kampung Gelam (KG) extends beyond the beaten paths of Bussorah, Baghdad and Arab Streets. I would like to invite participants to experience (through perhaps a little imagination) what Kampung Gelam was like when I was growing up there. Given its unique history and background, Kampung Gelam is much more than a ‘Malay area’. Unlike Geylang Serai or Kampung Ubi, Kampung Gelam was once a cosmopolitan settlement of Muslims from diverse ethnicities fused by a common faith and way of life. It was Singapore’s earliest Muslim Quarter. Aspects of social and cultural life (people, trades) will be a key feature in this tour.

About Khir Johari

Born and raised in Kampung Gelam, Khir Johari rediscovered his roots while living in Silicon Valley. A mathematics educator by training and a foodie by birth, Khir gets a kick from getting kids excited about learning mathematics and wouldn’t mind cheese tasting in class to teach the concept of percentage and angles in a circle. The combination of history addiction and the love for Nature’s beauty has made him an incorrigible traveler.

meeting point: Visitor’s Centre, Singapore Botanic Gardens. Cluny Road
date | time: Sunday, 24 Apr 2011 | 8.00-11.00 am
cost: $20.00 (Members) | $35.00 (Others)
reservations: shs.secretary@gmail.com (Wendy).
This tour is limited to 30 persons.
Hurry to avoid disappointment.


A botanical garden was established not long after Raffles arrived in Singapore. However, this first botanical garden, at the base of Canning Hill near the National Museum, was not long-lived. The Singapore Botanic Gardens that we know at Tanglin recently celebrated its 150th anniversary. It has been an experimental garden, a centre for botanical research, a focal point for horticultural science, and a beloved public park throughout its storied history. It has also been home to many pioneering – and often, rather eccentric – botanists. In our brief walk through the Gardens, we’ll look at areas (and trees) of particular heritage interest and the stories they tell as we amble through 150-plus years of Singapore history.

Shawn YK Lum is a tropical rainforest ecologist. He was born in Hawaii and was educated at Harvard University and at the University of California, Berkeley. After his post-doctoral attachment at the then Department of Botany at the National University of Singapore, Shawn joined the Natural Sciences and Science Education Faculty at the National Institute of Education. He currently offers courses on the Diversity and Evolution of Plants, Environmental Studies and Global Issues, the Conservation and Management of Natural Habitats and Environmental Sustainability. He is a member of the Botanical Society of America, the American Society of Plant Systematists and the Singapore Institute of Biology. Shawn is the current President of the Nature Society (of Singapore).

Read Flyer of Botanic Gardens Walk with Dr Shawn Lum

venue: Lee Foundation Theatre, NAFA Campus 3, 151 Bencoolen Street
date | time: Saturday, 23 Apr 2011 | 2.00-4.00 pm
registration 1.30 pm
admission: Free and open to the public
registration: http://shs-lim-chong-keat.eventbrite.com
enquiries: shs.secretary@gmail.com (Wendy)

This year, the Singapore Conference Hall & Trade Union House were gazetted as a National Monuments. With the demolition of the National Library, National Theatre and National Stadium, this iconic building is the last of  Singapore’s ‘nation-building’ buildings. The idea to construct the hall was first mooted in 1960 and the subsequent design competition was won by the Malayan Architects Co-Partnership, comprising Lim Chong Keat, ChenVoon Fee and William Lim. Built at a cost of $4 million, and completed in 1965, the building is considered one of the finest examples of international style architecture in Singapore.

Lim Chong Keat will present a talk about the concepts and the total design and building process and that led to the realisation of the building – and also the historical circumstances for architecture at that time. Lim, who was princpal of the firm at the time, was also the key designer and architect-in-charge of the project. He will discuss aspects of the total design including the site planning, the structure, climate considerations and detailing, and will also mention his special interest in the acoustics of the hall, and its use not only for conferences but also for concert performances.”

Lim Chong Keat was born to a distinguished family in Penang in 1930. He initially trained as an architect, graduating from the University of Manchester with a BA Hons in Architecture and then a Master’s degree from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) where he specialised in Architectural Acoustics under Prof Robert Newman (Bolt, Beranek & Newman, Cambridge Mass.). Under the group practice of Malayan Architects Co-partnership, succeeded by Architects Team 3/Jurubena Bertiga, he and his partners were responsible for several concert halls, notably the Singapore Conference Hall, Jurong Town Hall, DBS Auditorium, Penang Komtar auditoria & Geodesic Dome (Dewan Tunku), and the Shah Alam Town Council Auditorium.

Lim was the Founder Chairman of ARCASIA, and also Chairman of the CAA Board of Architectural Education. He received the BBM in Singapore, and was awarded the PAM Gold Medal in 1997. He has been a Visiting Professor at the University of Manchester, and Quatercentenary Visiting Fellow at Emmanuel College Cambridge. He now researches on Botanical species and conservation, and publishes the journal Folia Malaysiana, and resides in Penang.

Read Flyer of Lim Chong Keat Talk 23042011

venue: Possibility Room, Level 5, National Library, 100 Victoria Street
date | time: Saturday, 2 Apr 2011 | 3.00-5.00 pm
admission: Free and open to the public
enquiries: shs.secretary@gmail.com (Wendy)

During the first decade of the 20th century, the Chinese community in Singapore began to set up schools that offered a modern form of education using Chinese as medium of instruction. By 1941, before the outbreak of the Pacific War, these schools had numbered more than 300. And by the 1950s, a complete Chinese school system comprised of elementary schools to tertiary institution had come into existence. How did the Chinese schools develop in Singapore and how were they being managed and maintained with minimal or virtually no support from the colonial government? This talk will attempt to answer these questions and present a historical review of the role of Chinese education in Singapore.

Dr. Neo Peng Fu is a historian by training. He received his undergraduate and post graduate education at the National University of Singapore and University of California at Santa Barbara respectively. He publishes in the fields of Chinese
intellectual history and Chinese education in Singapore. He is currently an academic with the National Institute of Education, Nanyang Technological University.

Read PDF Poster of Talk Chinese Schools In 20th Century Singapore.

meeting point: Public Car Park, Newton Hawker Centre.
date | time: Saturday 26 March 2011 | 8.00 am
cost: $30.00 (Members) | $40.00 (Others)
reservations shs.secretary@gmail.com (Wendy).
This tour is limited to 40 persons.
Hurry to avoid disappointment.

Nested in the tranquil grounds off Lornie Road, lies a tranquail 40-hectare site which is home to the remains of many Singapore pioneers, many of whose names still grace those of streets and places in modern Singapore. Here, the earliest tombs dated back to the 1840s and stretches more than a century to the last burial in the early 1970s. A tour of this century-old cemetery housing 100,000 forefathers of Singapore is more than just a tour, whereby one can see the imprint and changes of our Chinese customs, culture and heritage throughout the years.

Throughout this outdoor living museum, by looking at the tomb inscriptions and designs, stone carvings and murals, one can see and learn Chinese customs and religious beliefs, Chinese mythology, fengshui, family and clan relationships, Qing dynasty reign years and Imperial titles and the ancestral areas in Fujian and Guangdong Prefectures whereby most of our forefathers came from.

So, take a walk into history amidst the undisturbed tranquil serenity of Bukit Brown wonderful flora and fauna, and  learn the historic, cultural roots of our forefathers in this living heritage museum.

Raymond Goh graduated with a honors degree in pharmacy is currently on board the Council of the Pharmaceutical Society of Singapore. Although he works full time in the healthcare industry in a regional capacity, he has found time to pursue his interest in Chinese history and culture, and is a qualified specialized heritage tour guide. He is also a founding member of the Asia Paranormal Investigators, a society which investigates unusual happenings in the region.  Raymond has conducted Heritage tours especially to the cemeteries for schools, community clubs and societies. He
is featured regularly in the Chinese press and TV programs like On the Beat and Frontline, in which his expertise in tombs matters was sought.

Read PDF Doc : Bukit Brown Living Museum of the Dead

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