Ipohworld's World

Saving Yesterday For Tomorrow


From what we know, there was a parade in Ipoh town back in 1947 – in support of the Kuomintang. We believe the above picture (from Lay Jin Chew) was taken at the same parade, which ran through the streets of Ipoh. Can anyone guess which street this is? On that note, do you know what business Barlow & Co Ltd was?

  1. Kevin Lim says:

    The portrait is Dr Sun Yat Sen & symbol is party Kuomintang. It seem the parade was celebrating the double ten, national day Republic of China.

  2. sk says:

    Interesting picture Chew Lay Jin. Hope you have more of these to share with Ipohworld.
    Kevin Lim, you also share a Double 10 celebration. My history doesnt cover this & this is the first time hearing it.
    From wikipedia
    The Double Tenth Agreement, formally known as the Summary of Conversations Between the Representatives of the Kuomintang and the Communist Party of China, was an agreement between the Kuomintang (KMT) and the Communist Party of China (CPC) that was concluded on 10 October 1945 (the Double Ten Day of the Republic of China) after 43 days of negotiations.[1][2] Mao Zedong and United States Ambassador to China Patrick J. Hurley flew together to Chongqing on 27 August 1945 to begin the negotiations. The outcome was that the CPC acknowledged the KMT as the legitimate government, while the KMT in return recognised the CPC as a legitimate opposition party. The Shangdang Campaign, which began on 10 September, came to an end on 12 October as a result of the announcement of the agreement.[3]
    The agreement was signed at what is now the Red Rock Village Museum in Chongqing.
    Wow – did not know this exist.
    I remember seeing a Kuomintang flag as a kid without knowing the significance.
    Shen – a google search for Barlow & Co Ltd drew banks.
    Very interesting indeed.
    If anyone has some pictures of Bombed Buildings in Ipoh by the Japanese, it would be a National Treasure. I dont think I have come across one.
    Anyone out there, has ?

  3. sk says:

    Shen. Yes found Barlow & Co Ltd Merchants & Agents in google search.
    in Singapore D Almeida Street – E. Bramal – manager signs per pro ( I think this term is hardly use & this is the first time hearing – meaning on behalf )

    • Ngai C O says:

      Hi sk,

      Per pro has long been abbreviated as pp. It is still in common use especially in business services, when secretaries and other staff sign on behalf of someone else.

      This someone may be absent or of a more senior ranking. Obviously, prior approval has been given for pp to be used.

    • Ngai C O says:

      Hi sk,

      Why I said it is still commonly used is because I used it frequently when I was at work and I receive mail with pp; in the last couple of months, one email and one hard copy that came through had pp prefixed to the signature.

      Maybe the ‘f’ you come across is a ‘bastardised’ version. Often, it is not unusual to see variations from the standard or commonly accepted practice popping up. One frequently wonders how it came about in the first place.

      I can only say that people these days do stretch their creativity and imagination when mincing their words or language.

      Hence, we have seen so many new symbols, signs, words to represent all the things we use to communicate and express ourselves.

      Who knows, ‘f’ may replace pp one day.

    • S.Y. Lee says:

      When I first started work as a lawyer in 1969, my employer was a sole proprietor who practised under his name, eg ABC. I had to sign Per Pro ABC. Subsequently, he changed his firm to ABC & Co. and I could sign ABC & Co. From correspondence with others, I notice nowadays, someone will sign “for XYZ” if he is signing his name on behalf of “XYZ”.

        • Ngai C O says:

          Hi sk,

          Since you mentioned pp, I have been on the look out for such use from incoming mail.

          In the last week, I have received two cheques with the equivalent of pp printed on them, not written.

          First cheque – Santander Bank clearly printed ‘per pro’.

          Second cheque – HSBC clearly printed ‘for and on behalf of’ xxxx co. ltd.

          The reason why the full text is adopted was the
          encouragement of the use of plain English in the last ten years.

          Obviously, how and when it is used has been vetted by the the company’s legal people to avoid being incriminated for inappropriate or wrong usage. It can be very costly in litigation cases.

          • sk says:

            Hi Ngai C O, You had me going for my cheque books but I presume there is no “pp” in Malaysian Cheque Books . Ngai, looks like you are writing not from Malaysia, Maybe from the States as there is no Santander Bank here. Same with letters here. I also asked some Court officials here if they have across “pp” which had them scratching their heads

  4. NCK says:

    Compiled from online Oxford Dictionary:

    per pro. /pəː ˈprəʊ/ abbre. (from Latin: per prōcūratiōnem) Used when signing a letter on behalf of sb else; now usu abbreviated to pp (or p.p. in US). The traditional way to use pp when signing a letter on sb else’s behalf is to place pp before one’s own name rather than before the name of the other person. This is because the original Latin phrase per procurationem means ‘through the agency of’. However, pp is now often taken to mean ‘on behalf of’ and is placed before the name of the person who has not signed, and this has become standard practice in many offices.

    The book in sk’s link was published in 1912. A person marked ‘manager signs per pro’ in the book should be an authorised signatory (or signing officer) of their company, I presume.

    I agree with sk that now we commonly see ‘f.’ (short for ‘for’) when someone signed on behalf of their superior. I guess this part of the world (not only Malaysia) has lost a little linguistic propriety.

  5. NCK says:

    By the way, the Double Ten Day or Double Tenth Day (雙十節), is the national day of the Republic of China (nowadays Taiwan). It commemorates the start of the Wuchang Uprising of October 10, 1911 which led to the collapse of the Qing Dynasty in China and establishment of the ROC on January 1, 1912. (Copied from Wikipedia.)

  6. sk says:

    Just to expound a little bit more of “pp”. Even in private sector, the use of ” for” or “f” in short was not encouraged. The receiving party shows his displeasure especially if your rank is lower than his.
    However, in Government dept, it is widely used – “bagi pihak” or bp in short.

    • Ngai C O says:

      Hi sk,

      pp, ‘for’, ‘f’ that hardly anyone will take notice of in normal circumstances has generated a bit of interest in this space amongst a minority of people.

      I have never seen or come across ‘for’ or ‘f’ until you mentioned it. It might well be a Malaysian ‘quirk’. And I see a lot of them. Many are preposterous and should have been pointed out.

      Those who showed displeasure to the the use of ‘f’ or ‘for’ were right because there is a distinct difference in meaning between them and pp, aka on behalf of.

      Perhaps we might one day come across ‘4’ as used in text language. Definitely not from the superstitious Chinese, who will feel insulted.

      On the other hand, Empat Ekor is okay. What a contradiction.

    • felicia says:

      Hi all,
      I’m more familiar with “bagi pihak” rather than “pp”…being the product of the Malay medium of instruction at school. But this is quite interesting. I never knew about “pp” or even the more recent “f” being used in letters. :O

      • Ngai C O says:

        Hi felicia,

        Still on the subject of pp, bp etc., I think the absence or lack of use is a direct symptom of the drop of the standard of English education in Malaysia.

        Hence, I am not surprised you never knew pp.

        Educators do not have the requisite proficiency or the confidence to drive home the correct usage; as can be witnessed by the government’s flip flop policies over the years.

        To maintain and uphold any standard, it requires a clear and constant long term plan. Not one dictated by the politics of the day.

        One senior ranking minister, who also had the education portfolio under his wing, was very surprised that the standard had not improved despite the government pumping enormous funds to the system.

        Even a dumb wit can explain why the government has failed and will continue to do so. However the elitist and the well off will not have to worry as they send their children to the best private or international schools.

        I can already see a Malaysianisation version of the English language both in its spoken and written form interspersed with the national language or the mother tongue of the person in its construction.

  7. Mano says:

    Hello Ngai, from what I have been given to understand, the digit four is similar in pronunciation to ‘die’ as well as ‘eat’. Eight similar in sound to ‘luck’. Apparently, it’s the position of the 4 that matters. For instance, if the 4 is in front as in 48, it ain’t half as bad as it can be interpreted to ‘eat luck’. But if it’s behind as in 84, then it’s ‘luck die’. So I guess the 4 being in front of the ‘Ekor’ is not a contradiction after all.
    This dawned on me whilst eating my number shaped cereals this morning:)

  8. sk says:

    Hi Ngai C O, How aptly written. I checked with my overseas correspondent & she said they use it frequently in their firm. So I suppose those Overseas friends that have”berkaitan dengan Orang Puteh terutama orang Britain” still uses “pp”.
    Ha3, Ngai & Mano, you also touched on something cacophony in ” Cantonese”.
    One day, my wife brought back a car with a number plate ” 554″ . Aiya, I exclaimed
    why bring back ” fai fai Sei’ or fast to die >
    Mano, not bad, you know a dying dialect.
    In a not too long news from the Star, it seems dialects are dying off, even in China.
    Just listen to our young kids. Ask them to speak dialect, they stared blankly to you.

  9. sk says:

    Coming back to Felicia query on recognising the street in Ipoh, is there such a company (Barlow & Co Ltd ) in Ipoh in 1947 ? Shen – you pointed out.
    Maybe you have someone working in Barlow & Co Ltd. If you zoom in to Barlow’s neighbour, there was a signboard. What company was that. Maybe it could shed some light.

    • Ngai C O says:


      Mano, you probably know more about Chinese than me.

      I must have been exposed to ‘4’ countless times arranged in any manner of order all my life. The only time that I have taken notice of this number was when someone pointed out to me.

      sk, I also saw this advert at the Straits Times archives. There is another one, dated 1942, yes during the war, of another advert. It was about a cough soothing sweet. It looked like the company’s business covered a wider range of products or services.

      The Barlow name pops up in plantations as well as in Barlow Boustead. Whether it is related to Barlow and Co, maybe someone who has had connections to the company can shed some light.

  10. NCK says:

    I have heard that ‘4’ is a good number according to Indian astrology. As for Cantonese, the number is usually associated with its homophone ‘die’ (adjective) which is obviously undesirable. However, the word ‘die’ as adverb means ‘a great deal’, or ‘nonstop’ if time is the reference. ‘8’ means ‘to make a fortune.’ So, ’48’ means ‘to make fortunes nonstop.’ Nonetheless, I still think not many people would want the combination ’48’, simply because ‘4’ is associated with ‘die’ (adjective).

  11. Ipoh Remembered says:

    Dear felicia … It’s interesting that you should ask what business Barlow and Company was in. In his spare time, the founder’s grandson, now 73, is in the heritage business: he’s on the council of Badan Warisan Malaysia (“Giving our past a future”) …

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