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MEMORIES are made of these …

Posted on September 16, 2012, Sunday

First Day cover

When a nation was born, a young stamp collector Goh Chun Oh queued up at the Kuching General Post Office at Jalan Tun Abang Haji Open to make sure he got the First Day cover of the 1963 Malaysia Day stamp.

Goh Chun Oh

Forty-nine years on, not only has the 64-year-old in his possession the First Day cover stamp collection but an officially stamped envelop as well to mark the inauguration of the Federation of Malaysia comprising Malaya, Sabah, Sarawak and Singapore.

On the inauguration day, three different stamps — yellow and violet (10 cents), green and yellow (12 cents) and chocolate and yellow (50 cents) — were issued.

Goh was also a dealer in early Sarawak, Malaysia, China, Hongkong and Macao stamps as well FDC, miniature sheets and other philatelics.

THE Raleigh bicycle was a very well-known brand in the 1960’s, and over the years and even up till now, it is still has a place in the modern cyclist’s heart.

In Kuching town at that time, many people owned bicycles, considered a main mode of transport during a period where ownership of cars or other motor vehicles was very much a novelty.

The Raleigh women’s bicycle (picture) with a wide Brook saddle had probably logged up thousands of miles on Kuching roads before even Malaysia was born in 1963.

According to antique dealer Joseph Daniel who bought the bicycle from its owner at Chawan Road, it is more than 100 years old. Although a bit rusty, it is, on the whole, intact and can still be used.

He said this particular bicycle was already around when locals celebrated Malaysia Day on Sept 16, 1963.

Daniel also bought another bicycle — a men’s Raleigh — from the same owner. An antique collector from Brunei spotted the bicycle, bought it from Daniel for a few thousand ringgit and took it back to the Sultanate.

Burning midnight oil

DURING the 1960’s when electricity supply was scarce even in the town, many households used kerosene lamps or paraffin lamps, as they were called by the British, to light up their
homes.

There was also a rare kerosene lamp with a long glass tube and a metal reflector which has become a most sought after item for antique dealers and collectors. Due to its rarity, it is said to fetch a good price.

Joseph Daniel has one of these lamps. He remembers it was often used in the 1960’s by villagers when they went out to tap rubber at dawn or hunt for animals at night.

He believes there were many such lamps in the old days but it is hard to come across one now.

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