Wednesday, March 23, 2016


NATIONAL FESTIVAL. ANNIVERSARY OF FOUNDING OF REPUBLIC. The Chinese community of Christchurch kept holiday yesterday, the nineteenth anniversary of the Chinese Republic, which was, founded after the fall of the Manchu Dynasty in 1911 The celebration took the form of a picnic and sports meeting at English Park. He festival is given the name the Double Tenth because it took place on the tenth day of the tenth month of the European Calendar this calendar was adopted after the revolution, which also inaugurated a greater measure of adoption of European customs than had been the rule under the former rulers. At English Park yesterday the festival was opened by Mr Yee Gam, the presidents of the Chinese Sports Committee. who addressed the Chinese, numbering about 60 who were present. The interpreter explained to the Europeans present that the speech referred to the services done for China by Dr, Sun Yat-sen, who was the principal figure of the revolution. Apart from the sports events, which followed immediately after the speeches, the principal feature of the afternoon was the Association football match, played between the Chinese team and the Marist junior team This resulted in a win for the Europeans by 5 goals to 4, after a closely contested game. There was a large attendance of Chinese from all surrounding districts including representatives from Wellington, Dunedin. South Canterbury and Westland. All of those present were entertained at afternoon tea. and a touch of colour was lent to the gathering, which was large in spite of the bad weather conditions, by the Chinese banner of welcome and the flags British and Chinese which flew above the grounds.
The whole of the gate takings are as has been the custom, to be given to the Christchurch Public Hospital All the expenses of the meeting were borne by the Chinese community. The officials for the sports were President Yep Gam; K. N Lowe: interpreter Eric Chun-. starters W. L Kee and Willie Tims; and judges. Harry Wong and Chan S Wah: Chinese announcers Norman Lim and Y Yak; organiser George Ah Chang and treasurer Fred Young. The sports results as follows: Three-legged Race —George Ah Chang and George Yee 1, Kwok Bros 2. Backward Walking Race—Harry Kwok 1, Arthur Yee 3. Net to Net Race—Harry Kwok 1, F. Floy 2. Thread-the-Needle Race—Harry Kwok I, George Yee 2 Egg and Spoon Race—George Yee 1 A. Kwok 2. European's Race—E. Harper 1, R Gib bons 3. Slow Cycle Race—Arthur Teo. Children's Race —Irma Lowe 1, Joyce Tim 2 Bicycle Race—Arthur Yee 1, Fook Hor 3. Europeans' Bicycle Race C C  Allen 1. Flint and Smith 3
Football Match. The football match, won by Marist, 6-4, was evenly contested throughout, although, the Marist. team had the advantage of the play -in the second half. The teams were: Chinese: George Shue. Percy Lowe, George Yee, Arthur Yee. Yea Too,.F. Loy, Harry Kwok, Allan Kwok, Willie Chong Lee. George Ah Chang (captain), and J S. Tom. Marist: W. Barrett, Fullen, F. Tool, C. Hull, B. Porter, P. Watts. L George, C Grimes (captain), M. George, J. Porter, and D Sellers. The first spell ended with the score 3-2 in favour of the Chinese team, but in the second spell Marist scored three goals and the Chinese only one, a penalty The scorers for Marist were J. Porter (2). C Hall, L. George, and T Grimes, and for the Chinese, Harry Kwok 3.Willie Chong Lee, and Allan Kwok" After the match the prizes won were presented by Mr Yee Gam Following this many of the Chinese returned- to the City in beflagged motor-cars, making a gay procession. Press, Volume LXVI, Issue 20056, 11 October 1930, Page 5
Press, Volume LXVII, Issue 20363, 9 October 1931, Page 18

Saturday, February 20, 2016

Chinese soccer

 The local Chinese Hamilton are making great preparations for the reception of the Chinese University Soccer team, who are to play South Auckland, at- Hamilton, on August 20. The team will arrive on the 19th and will be taken for a motor drive in the afternoon. in the evening, at 6 o'clock, a dinner will be tendered to them by the local members of the Kuo Min Tang (Chinese Political Party) after which a Chinese operetta will be staged with Chinese music and magical turns by Mr. Yeng, the secretary Later in the evening a real Chinese supper comprised of Oriental dishes will be served. Mr. H. K. Leong. the president of the local branch of the Kuo Min Tang, is in charge of arrangements.  Hawera & Normanby Star, Volume XLVIII, 8 August 1924, Page 9

Sunday, December 27, 2015

IN THE BANKRUPT ESTATE OP AH LSB CHGS YUNG, OF WBSTBROOK, STOREKEEPEB. lIHEEEBY give notice that I have tbis day SOLD to MR OHOW FONG of Grejmouth, Storekeeper, the whole of the Book Debts ia tbe Bankrupt Estate of Ah Lee Chee Young of Westbrook, Storekeeper. B. W. WADE, Deputy Official Assignee. Hokitika, Nov., 19,h, 1891- With reference to the above I hereby give notice that all the persons indebted to the above estate whose names appear below are requested to pay the amounts ef their several accounts at once. CHOW FONG. s, d. Lbih Mow 610 6 Yip Gne 2 2 6 Kttifi Ohon 3 8 6 Kum Com Yick 3 8 6 Lnm Cbun 3 8 6 Char Dick 6 8 6 Gan Why 15 0 Joe Mo Young 28 10 6 FongLoon 16 0 0 Good Lam 10 15 8 Pong MeeYing 810 1 Pong Sum mi 212 2 Chung Jiry 416 6 Yip May 2IS 0 Loo Song 16 6 Tbung Ing Patty 618 6 Yee Sing 12 0 Piog Gee 114 0 Ohtftf Hong Gae Party 32 2 6 Gu Chin 4 3 6 Chnn Yee Dick £12 6 Ohoo Hong Gue 15 6 Joy Yee 017 6 Young Head 113 0 hil Gow 015 6 Choo Cbar 012 0 Chung Ja'c' Sbing 3 3 0 CKun^Look 310 0 Ohing Young Que 015 0 Chung Kiim Sing 210 0 Chung Plilg Lai Party 9 5 6 Chung Nu 2 0 0 Chung Churi 013 0 Gue Him 16 0 Hoo Sing 0 6 0 Chun Chin 0 9 6 STing Otaun 0 4 0 Sou Son 0 5 0 Loo Ying 0 8 0 Sim Kin 0 3 0 Yick Chin 0 3 0 Kon Cho 110 0 Gan Kum Gee 0 6 C Lock Ham 7 10 Char Yu Party 27 9 0 Obor Yu 216 0 Lum Me Hune Party 10 12 6 KumCbin 311 v Kum Ping Ling 311 0 Ing Vim and Char Wy 7 0 0 Chum 100 Par y 910 0 Cue Loo Hung 412 6 lee Huny 12 6 JneDic* Sing 216 0 Joe Dick 110 0 In? T> iro .u~ 219 0 Won Gow 27 11 o <Jhur° Yin JJji.ek 13 211 ObeWhaKon 3 2 6 Charly Chun Ing 4 2 (5 West Coast Times , Issue 9179, 20 November 1891, Page 3

Friday, August 21, 2015

WW2 survivor’s search for Bahau, and closure

WW2 survivor’s search for Bahau, and closure

A war survivor and POW camp baby, Christina McTaggart-Tie Kim Nyong, 66, continues to research and spread the word about the Bahau POW camp in Malaysia during WWII. Jo Lo from Auckland City Libraries attended Christina's talk and interviewed her later about Bahau, where hundreds died from starvation, hardship and disease.
The rain was pounding down hard last Friday (21 May) as I beelined my way into Avondale Library to listen to Christina McTaggart's World War 2 experiences.
Christina McTaggartChristina was the first baby to survive Fuji-go (‘Fuji Village’), a Catholic resettlement colony (also known as a prisoner-of-war camp) in Bahau, West Malaysia, during the Second World War.
It was a fearful time, and Christina’s immediate family members decided to move north from Singapore to the Malaysian settlement to escape ill-treatment by the Japanese.
Despite high infant mortality rates in Bahau, Christina was born healthy. She was only 18 months old when the war ended, so her stories have been handed down by her mother Hilda, now 91.
The colony, split into ‘camp 5’ for the Chinese and ‘camp 6’ for the Eurasians, offered protection and safety to its people.
“Otherwise you were ‘outside’ and risked being captured and tortured by the Japanese.”
Many men were interrogated and suffered a terrible fate, and one of Christina’s uncles was arrested, tortured and killed because he worked for the British government.
Starvation and malaria were the biggest killers in Bahau, claiming between 300 and 1500 lives. However, the settlers were allowed to roam freely as long as they behaved and stayed well within the boundaries.Bahau resettlement camp
“We were treated well as long as we worked hard to grow food – it was a time of survival.”
While it’s notoriously difficult to get war information out of the elderly Chinese, Christina has been documenting her mother’s stories for 20 years.
Christina’s uncle was 10 when they were in the camp. Now 76 and living in Melbourne, it was initially impossible to obtain any information from him.
“It was a very sad time. Whenever I asked, he always said, ‘I don’t want to talk about it.’ He always wanted to forget about that part of his life.”
Christina and her cousin have been tenacious with the questioning, and the uncle has only begun to open up, in part due to the cousin having started researching the family’s history.

Beyond Gallipoli, and reliving history for future generations

Keeping people informed, and history alive, are the reasons behind Christina’s speaking engagements about Bahau. She wants to hand down her mother’s courageous stories of survival – not only to her own two children and six grandchildren – but to anyone who wants to know about the war heroes and survivors beyond Gallipoli and WWI.
“There were lots that happened to other people all over the world during the Second World War too.”
She wants to get people like her uncle “to come out of the woodwork.”
Compared with the Holocaust or China's Nanking massacre -- dubbed ‘the forgotten Holocaust’ by the late Iris Chang 
in The Rape of Nanking -- the horrors in South-East Asia during the Japanese invasion are not as well known.
How the younger generations are being told about Japan's WWII involvement in its schools is still controversial. This significant chunk of history has, for decades, been hugely distorted or whitewashed in the country’s high school textbooks to the point that some Japanese are clueless about the war crimes which occurred.
“When I went to Japan and stayed with the families, I was given VIP treatment. But if you ever said anything [about the war], they would say to me, ‘No, it can’t be.’ It’s because they were not told.”
Christina will be doing two more talks in Auckland before heading off to Malaysia and Singapore at the end of June. She’ll be visiting her mother who’s turning 92 soon, and meeting up with a historian, Fiona Hodgkins, whose mother was also at the Bahau camp.
My jaw dropped when she admitted she’d never once been back to Bahau since 1945.
“I’ve always wanted to go! They [sic] have opened up so much more about Bahau. I’ll be taking photos and finding out all about camp 5 – Mukim 5 – my camp.”
She will dig deeper about other settlement camps – for instance, the whereabouts of camps 1 to 4 in Bahau if they existed – in her quest to piece together the Bahau jigsaw.
“I want to write about Bahau and the war. I have memoirs from a priest who was at the camp. He’s dead now, but I’ve got 80 pages and would like to get this documented.”
And hopefully, what Christina unearths will soon be turned into a valuable source of information about what happened in South-East Asia during the Second World War.

If you would like to get in touch with Christina McTaggart-Tie about her experiences or research on the Bahau camp, please email her at

Recommended books about Singapore, Malaysia and WW2

Related links

Articles on Christina McTaggart:
Ebook containing information about Bahau:

Migrant works to honour war heroes

Migrant works to honour war heroes

Christina McTaggart was born in a Japanese prisoner-of-war camp. Photo / Brett Phibbs
Christina McTaggart was born in a Japanese prisoner-of-war camp. Photo / Brett Phibbs
An Auckland widow born in a Japanese prisoner-of-war camp has made it her mission to highlight New Zealand World War II heroes of the Pacific.
Christina McTaggart, 66, gives regular talks about her family's war time ordeal "to keep it real" for Kiwis.
Her next talk will be at the Avondale Library tomorrow morning, where she will share her story of being the first baby to survive the jungle hell in Fuji-go, a resettlement camp set up in what was then Malaya in 1943 by the Japanese military authorities.
A recent AUT University study suggests interest in Anzac Day is likely to decline over time.
Historian Professor Paul Moon found that an increase in the number of immigrants, without an understanding of the significance of Anzac Day, would also contribute to that decline.
Mrs McTaggart, originally from Singapore, said treating Anzac Day as "a day we honoured all Kiwi heroes who fought in all wars" would make the day more meaningful, especially for new migrants who knew little about Gallipoli.
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She said it was important for Kiwis to learn about what happened in other wars our soldiers have fought, including in Malaya.
Mrs McTaggart said she was too young to remember or understand anything about what went on, but her mother never stopped telling her stories about the war.
One that was often told was about the time Singapore fell to the Japanese and the interrogation of men that followed.
"They were tortured, burned with cigarettes, their heads held under water and they were beaten until they talked. If they worked for the British, they were taken away and killed."
But she remembers one happy tale her mother told.
"It is about how the New Zealand and Australian forces came, as bearers of good news, bringing food to the village and the news that the Japanese had surrendered," Mrs McTaggart said.
"Since young, I have always had a warm feeling about the New Zealand and Australian Army because of that story. I think those who died in Malaya should be remembered just as much as those who fought in the battle of Gallipoli."
Mrs McTaggart's mother, Hilda Wee, now 91, still lives in Singapore.
During the Japanese occupation, at least 300 people in her village died, mostly from malnutrition, beri-beri, malaria and other insect-borne diseases.
"I don't think many in this new generation can imagine the horrors of war," Mrs McTaggart said.
"Death is just an integral part of it, and those who were not killed or tortured to death died of starvation because there was not enough food," she said.
"My family did not starve, but the less fortunate people had to eat whatever they could find, such as wild fowl, snails, frogs and cats. My mother had to enter the jungle to catch monitor lizards, which were a delicacy."
Mrs McTaggart moved to New Zealand in 1971 after she married naval architect Daniel McTaggart. He died six years ago.