12 January 2014

The Hakka Ancestral Temple


The Hakka Ancestral Temple side entrance.
Sketched with fountain pens, Pentel ink brush and Calli mixed ink,


The Hakka Columbarium
Sketched with fountain pens, Pentel Ink Brush and Calli mixed ink.


This morning I went to The Hakka Ancestral Temple in Old Holland Road to pay respect to my late Grand Parents and Parents.
These are the 2 sketches of the Temple & Columbarium.

Hakka Ancestral Temple and Columbarium.
The history of Fung Yun Thai Association (丰永大公会) dated back to the 19th century, when the early Hakka immigrants from the three counties of China (Fung Shoon 丰顺, Yun Teng 永定 and Tai Po 大埔), arrived at Singapore.
In 1888, for the price of 300 silver dollars plus an annual tax of 50 cents, the Hakkas purchased parcels of land off Holland Road from the Straits Settlements government for their ancestral temple (Sanyi Ci 三邑祠) and cemetery (Fung Yun Thai Cemetery 丰永大坟山, also known as Yu Shan Teng 毓山亭), with Fun Yun Thai Kongsi (丰永大公司) established to manage the properties.
The kongsi was re-registered as an association in 1906 in order to run the temple, cemetery and small surrounding clusters of Hakka villages effectively. In the fifties, the ancestral temple also functioned as Nam Tong School (南同小学) to provide elementary education for the Hakka children who lost their opportunities to study during the Japanese Occupation.
This lasted until 1977, when the entire cemetery hill was acquired by the Singapore government. Nam Tong School was discontinued, while the Hakka villagers were resettled elsewhere. A compensation of $1 million and a small 6.38 hectares of land, including the site of the temple, was reserved for Fung Yun Thai Association. Exhumation was then carried out four years later. In 1991, a columbarium was constructed within the designated area to house the exhumed ashes.