𝐁𝐮𝐤𝐢𝐭 𝐓𝐚𝐦𝐛𝐮𝐧'𝐬 𝐇𝐞𝐚𝐡 𝐒𝐰𝐞𝐞 𝐋𝐞𝐞 𝐌𝐚𝐧𝐬𝐢𝐨𝐧 𝐓𝐡𝐞𝐧 & 𝐍𝐨𝐰
The Heah Swee Lee Ancestral Mansion in Bukit Tambun, Penang resurfaced again, this time, in an old book published in 1986 (Historical Personalities of Penang). With the help of one of our followers, some key personalities in this vintage photo are identified as:
1) Heah Seng Huat (gentleman in grey suit, seated. First born son of Heah Swee Lee. Heah Seng Huat donated the Penang Polo Ground (opposite Penang General Hospital to the British government for Polo) 2) Heah Eng Hoe (gentleman in grey suit, standing)
The photo is believed to be taken circa 1940s. Heah Swee Lee was not in this family photo as he has passed away in 1929.
According to the book, an "amah cheh" would be appointed as a personal nurse for each child born into a wealthy family. Note the amah cheh in far left and far right of the picture.
The '2020' picture is credited to State EXCO for Tourism and Creative Economy YB Yeoh Soon Hin, who visited the mansion in June 2020, with Bukit Tambun ADUN Goh Choon Aik and Mohd Ridzal, Director of Tourism, Arts and Heritage Bureau of MBSP to explore the element of heritage and tourism in bukit tambun as new tourism spot.
Heah Swee Lee was a renowned sugar and rubber planter, who co-founded and served as a President of the Penang Chinese Chamber of Commerce. He was also a member of the Perak State Council.
He was the son of Heah Jin Wooi, a pioneer Chinese sugar planter of Kuala Kurau and leading Teochew personality of Penang.
It was Heah Jin Wooi who built this grand ancestral mansion in Bukit Tambun, and his son Heah Swee Lee was born in this mansion.
The grand ancestral mansion is a prized heritage which features intricate paintings of classical Chinese filial piety examples, along with other ornate architectural details.
For more information about this mansion, check out https://www.facebook.com/100620074888546/posts/172677987682754/
Then photo credit: Historical Personalities of Penang (no ISBN number) Now photo credit: Yeoh Soon Hin Facebook