Ipohworld's World

Saving Yesterday For Tomorrow

blog57

Yes, this was taken at a funeral…no, we’re not in a morbid mood this Wednesday ;)

We’d just like to draw your attention to the building in the background (behind the bus and cars). Familiar?

  1. Ngai C O says:

    Hi felicia,

    This is a good start to the New Year. HaHaHa.

    If my recollection is still good, it is none other than the famous death street, Hume Street.

    The building at the back is the mosque.

    I am not sure, but all the funeral parlours have flown the nest.

    • Ngai C O says:

      Hi,

      From the picture alone, someone familiar with Chinese funeral rites can decipher lots of information.

      Correct me if I am wrong.
      There was an amah, meaning the family was well to do.
      The fact that the funeral rite was held in a parlour usually meant there were older close relatives like mum or dad living together in the deceased’s home.
      The number of roast pigs also signified wealth and it meant the funeral procession leading to burial was about to begin.
      Judging by the cars, it looked like 50s to 60s.
      More than likely at that time in question, the deceased would be buried at the cemetery along Tambun Road.
      It being the case, the roast pigs would be sliced up and eaten at the temple next to the cemetery, which still stands at the junction between Tambun Road and Brash Road.

      I remember having to wear a black piece of cloth on my right sleeve for three months as a mark of respect for my grandmother. It would be left sleeve for a male relative.

      • Ipoh Remembered says:

        Dear Ngai C O … Thanks for all the deciphering! You reminded me of that temple; I hadn’t thought about it in years.

        And Mano … Did you happen to look at the cars in the photograph? The car parked at the top-right of the picture … is it a Toyota Corona, do you think?

  2. Mano says:

    Dear Ipoh Remembered, I concur with Ngai C O, judging by the cars, it’s the 50′s or early 60′s. I doubt if there were any Japanese makes then.
    As far as I can tell, from the left, is a Morris Minor, a Hillman Minx, possibly a Holden, the little Fiat 500 followed by, I’m guessing here, the older model Hillman Minx or Rapier as it was sometimes designated.

  3. Mano says:

    Okay, from the bus to the right is a Morris Minor and then there is this car whose grille seems to have caught the sun making it unidentifiable. If this is the one you’re referring to, I’m sorry but I’m stumped. Although I must admit, it could pass for a Toyota Corona!
    After this, more towards the foreground, half hidden, is a Peugeot 403.

  4. Ipoh Remembered says:

    If this is the one you’re referring to, I’m sorry but I’m stumped. Although I must admit, it could pass for a Toyota Corona!

    Well, yes, that’s the one I was asking about. As you say, it is difficult to identify with confidence — but if it is, indeed, a third-generation Corona, then the photograph was taken no earlier than the mid-’60s.

    Thanks for checking.

  5. Ngai C O says:

    Hi Mano and Ipoh Remembered,

    You have amazing photographic memories and recollections, which help to piece together information like a story line.

    I am pretty sure there are lots of stories to be told from this picture alone. Personally, I have not come across an instance where the deceased had to be brought to Hume Street for the final rites in following with the Chinese tradition at the time. My late relatives were older than anyone else n the household; so they had rites at home.

    It helps me, like yourselves, to jog back memories of the past.

    Ipoh Remembered, the temple is still there if Ipohworld would kindly allow the link. As a kid on the bicycle, I often used it to shelter from the monsoon rain.

    Opposite is Brash Road. Surprisingly, the name has not changed. Thanks perhaps to the cemetery!!!

    The British soldiers and their family used to play polo on the field in Brash Road during weekends.

    Beyond the field at the far end was a low hill, which had since been largely levelled leaving the building belonging to the Malay school.

    The British soldiers must have used the backdrop for shooting practice at some point. I found many spent cartridges on the clay soil.

    Below is link to picture of temple if you copy and paste it, then click the http.

    4.598468,101.107985

  6. Ipoh Remembered says:

    Dear Ngai C O … Thanks for providing the geographical co-ordinates for the temple. I was able to “take a look” via the Internet. It looks much the same as I remember it!

    Looking at it, I was reminded of something from the Ipoh of the ’40s and ’50s and early ’60s: a small book printed on cheap red (or dark pink) paper, with thousands of little drawings of “auspicious” objects, e. g., gravestones. Next to each drawing was a number, used for gambling purposes. Are these little books still used? I wonder if ipohWorld has one in its collection.

    Also, you mention that Brash Road is still Brash Road (or, I suppose, Jalan Brash). I also find this a little surprising. I don’t see why Bob Brash is still commemorated when the Maxwells, for example, are not. IKA and company, can ipohWorld offer any insight here?

    • Ngai C O says:

      Hi Ipoh Remembered,

      I heard about the red book but not familiar how it worked. Other readers might come forward to share their experiences.

      You have just jogged my memory to two other things.

      1st. Illegal three digit gambling betting on the horse races was rampant and the majority of households had bought bets at one time or another. Wing Fook in Canning Gardens more or less covered the housing estate. The shop had closed many years ago. The shop was just a runner but the king pin could well be a datuk or a rich man.

      2nd. Certain numbers would not be accepted.

      3rd. Hard core gamblers went to great lengths to predict winning numbers. Some engaged mediums to go to graves like the one at Tambun Road at night to raise the spirits to give winning numbers.

      4th. Of course the Perak Turf Club would be a very crowded place during the weekend. Offices normally closed at 12 or 12.45 noon on Saturdays. Many punters would make their way to the club. The town would turn quiet for a while.
      My late father in law was one punter that hardly missed the races. Well, he was so addicted that his foundry business went under in the end.

      5th. Great day for the expatriates and rich miners etc. to rub shoulders and booze. Chong Kok Lim owned many horses.

      6th. The Chinese newspapers had a wide readership because of horse racing.

      7th. It was common for people to spend a lot of time talking about betting on the horses apart from mah jong.

      As for Brash, IKA and company would most likely have info on it.

      When you mentioned Maxwells, are you referring to Maxwells of the law firm Maxwells, and his two other partners?

      • Ipoh Remembered says:

        Dear Ngai C O … Just a quick answer for now:

        When you mentioned Maxwells, are you referring to Maxwells of the law firm Maxwells, and his two other partners?

        I’m referring to Eric Maxwell, who had Maxwell Road named after him; and his brother Charlton Maxwell, whose name was given to Charlton Road. Do either of these road-names still exist? I had thought not.

      • Ipoh Remembered says:

        The law firm was Maxwell & Kenion, and yes, there was also a street named Kenion Street, near the old (original) market.

        There used to be a nice hotel on Kenion Street. The hotel was taken over and transformed. If the street still exists, I’m pretty sure it’s called something else now.

      • Mano says:

        Hi, Ngai C O & Ipoh Remembered, the little red book is to give you the three digits associated with a dream one may have had. So, for instance, if you had a dream of traveling in a plane, you looked up this book where there was picture of a person in a plane or something similar and punt the number associated with that picture.
        I came across this in Taiping along time ago where, from what I gathered, was a well organised and reliable (as in winning payments) syndicate there.

        • Ipoh Remembered says:

          Thank you, Mano! I had forgotten the connection to dreams. You’re quite right.

          I wish I’d long ago been aware of that reliable syndicate in Taiping!

  7. Ngai C O says:

    Hi Ipoh Remembered,

    Just did a quick Instant Street View, Jalan Charlton still exists but Maxwell Road is Jalan Tun Razak.

    They join at a T junction incidentally.

    • Ipoh Remembered says:

      Dear Ngai C O

      Jalan Charlton still exists

      Thanks for letting me know.

      In a way I’m not completely surprised, because Charlton really was in love with Malaya. He mastered the language and wrote text-books for civil servants to use. He was even happily married to a Malay woman, though I’m not sure he converted to Islam (I just don’t remember).

      But in my estimation his brother Eric did more for Ipoh than Bob Brash, so it does puzzle me why Brash’s name is still there and the Maxwell name gone.

      I do wonder how much the local authorities know about these historical figures when deciding whether to retain or replace their names.

  8. Ipoh Remembered says:

    Dear Ngai C O

    I am pretty sure there are lots of stories to be told from this picture alone.

    I imagine so, too. I wonder if the donor provided (or could be asked for) additional information.

    Illegal three digit gambling betting on the horse races was rampant and the majority of households had bought bets at one time or another. Wing Fook in Canning Gardens more or less covered the housing estate.

    I know there were two blocks of shops in Canning Gardens, one of them facing Jalan Lee Kwee Foh. Was Wing Fook a shop on this side? I remember vaguely that there was a Shellane “cooking gas” dealer there, and a toy store run by an Indian gentleman who also sold magazines from Britain.

    On the other side, there was a provision shop called “Yee Loong.” The imported Jacob’s cream crackers you mentioned last week were available in that shop, as were imported Marie biscuits from Huntley and Palmer. At some point a small wet market was built facing this block of shops, but I can’t remember exactly when.

    My late father in law was one punter that hardly missed the races. Well, he was so addicted that his foundry business went under in the end.

    That’s a pity. I’m sorry to hear it. I hope his family recovered.

  9. Ngai C O says:

    Hi Ipoh Remembered,

    All the shops you mentioned faced Jalan Lee Kwee Foh except Yee Loong, which faced the market.

    The Shellane supplied most of Canning Gardens before Esso came along. It closed when Radio and General folded. I am not sure whether Shellane still supplies gas.

    Yes, the Indian shop selling toys and imported magazines, which includes all the comics, cookery, fashion, and gardening magazines, is indeed still around. I think it has moved one or two doors to the right or left but also taken over the full shop lot.

    Yee Loong used to stock many imported stuff like stock cubes, cheeses and the biscuits you mentioned. I think it went with the collapse of the tin mining industry.

    The wet market was Thanks to the Municipal Council of the Seenivasagam Brothers sometime in the late 60s. It was thriving but since a shade of the era.

    Most of the original Canning folk had moved away. It is still as ‘peaceful’ as before.

    I am not sure whether you remember the ‘Rukun Tetanga’ where we had to take turns to patrol the streets from about 9pm onwards. It was an opportunity to get to know people from the housing estate. My group always ended up at a batchelor’s place for a cup of tea/coffee half way through the rounds.

    As for my father in law, it was very unfortunate but we moved on.

  10. Ngai C O says:

    Hi Ipoh Remembered,

    Talking about Shellane, many of the houses in Canning Gardens, especially the first builds like Jalan Chow Kai, Lebuh Woods had chimney stacks. These are only visible from the back pitch roofs.

    I think they were provided as standard unless buyers opted out of it.

  11. Ngai C O says:

    Hi Mano,

    Now I remember my mother referring to the book to get the numbers.
    She would place her bets with the door to door vegetable seller on his tut tut.
    His trade was so good he gave up the green grocer business to take bets full time.
    Not long after, he drove a big Benz. He did well.

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