Kellie's Castle (Bahasa Malaysia and English Subtitle)
History about Kellie's Castle / Sejarah Kellie's Castle The BM info is copied from other blog
Saturday, April 11, 2009
Kellie's Castle was built by William Kellie Smith, a successful planter in the Ipoh area of Perak. Smith was born on the Kellas Estate in Scotland in 1870, and the name Kellie was actually his mother's maiden name.
When he grew up he left Scotland in search of the rich life he had dreamt of, and ended up in Malaya. In those days there was money to be made as a planter or tin miner. Smith ended up working with a rubber planter called Alma Baker. Baker was involved with clearing forests and making roads for the government in south Perak. Smith joined him and they made good money.
Smith used his new wealth to buy 900 acres of land south of Ipoh. He cleared the jungle for his rubber plantation and built a new estate and manor house for his wife Agnes and their daughter.
The house was named Kinta Kellas. Kinta Valley is the name of the area surrounding Ipoh, and Kellas was in memory of his family farm back in Scotland.
The house was built in 1909-1910 in Greco-Roman and Moorish styles with extravagant columns and arches and keyhole windows. The bricks and tiles were imported from India.
The house supposedly had a wine cellar with its own hidden tunnel. A bridge crossed the Kinta River which flows in front of the house. The manor was well located, sitting on a little knoll just by the bend of Sungai Kinta, and had a clear, unobstructed view of the Kinta Valley.
The grounds were transformed into large open spaces, with luxuriant gardens, lawns and a lake. It typified a British gentleman's estate in the Victorian era. Smith continued to make his fortune in rubber and also turned to tin.
When their first son was born in 1915, Smith wanted a larger, more stately home. Work began on a new wing to the manor, which took 10 years to complete. As it was just an extension to the existing home, there were no servants' quarters or kitchen. The existing ones were connected by a covered walkway. Many of the workmen were Indians. In the early 1920s a flu epidemic occurred and many of his estate workers died. The Indians asked for a temple to be built in honour of the deity Mariamman who would hopefully give them protection. The temple was soon built and was 1500m from the house.
After completion of the temple, work resumed on the manor house. In 1926 Smith and his daughter made a trip home to Britain to visit the wife and son, as the son was schooling there. Smith had ordered a lift for the manor from Lisbon, Portugal. This would have been Malaya's first manually operated lift. Tragically he caught pneumonia and died in Lisbon in December 1926.
His wife sold her interest in the Kellas Estate and the Smith family never returned to Malaya. The son was killed in World War II. Since the estate was abandoned in 1926 not much of the first home is left today, apart from the covered walkway, an open courtyard and part of a crumbling wall from the old wing.
Legends were born, one said that ghost of Smith still wanders through the ruins. Other legends were of secret underground tunnels. But apart from two known tunnels, none were ever found.
The Museum of Antiquities refurbished parts of the castle, mostly in the old wing by replastering the walls and laying floor tiles. An interesting discovery was made in June 2003.
During the course of widening the Gopeng - Batu Gajah road at the 6th kilometre stretch, workers unearthed a section of a tunnel. This 1.5m high by one-metre wide passageway is believed to lead from the castle to the Hindu temple nearby.
Friday, April 10, 2009
Kellies Castle is symbol of love, like the Taj Mahal in Agra, India. And in the architecture, there is definitely some moghul influence visible.
But Smiths' reasons were no different. He loved his wife, adored her. At the age of 20, it was in 1890, he arrived in Malaya, as Malaysia was known then. He came in touch with an estate owner called Alma Baker. Baker had won concessions from the state government to lear 360 hectares of forest in Perak.
Smith made some substantial profits with his business with Baker. This resulted in Smith planting rubber trees. He also was involved in the tin mining industry, which at that time was at it's highpoint in Perak. In time, he became the owner of Kinta Kellas Estate and the Kinta Kellas Tin Dredging Company, near Ipoh.
Now he had made his fortune. It was time to return to Scotland and marry his Scottish girl Agnes. He brought her to Malaysia in 1903. In 1904 they became the parents of a daughter: Helen.
Smith wanted a son too, but Agnes failed to conceive. Smith wanted his heir to take over his empire in Malaya. It was not until 1915 before Agnes became pregnant again. She gave birth to a son: Anthony. The birth of his son was the start of an even greater success.
Anthony's birth was the start of the expansion of the mansion. Smith started planning to build a castle which he wanted to call Kellas House, after his hometown in Scotland.
Smith was fascinated by the Hindu culture. His plans were to build his house with similar architecture features as in south India, Madras. For the building he imported bricks and tiles from India. He even employed even Indian workers to keep his house Indian.
The restoration of Kellie's Castle
At arrival at Kellie's Castle you can "meet" William Kellie Smith and his two children. Their sculptures are standing on the exterior wall. The one of his beloved wife fell off some years back. The tunnels have been sealed off for safety reasons. The rumour is that Smith's car is parked in one of the tunnels.
Sunday, March 8, 2009
William Kelie Smith di lahirklan pada 1 Mac 1870 di Dallas, Scotland dan berhijrah ke Malaya ketika itu berumur 20tahun untuk mencuba nasib di sini. Pada tahun 1905 beliau mendirikan Rumah Kellas, dan pada 1909 batu asas kedua untuk istana ini di dirikan atas dasar kasih sayang beliau pada isterinya.
Di katakan beliau menggunakan khidmat pekerja dari Madras seramai 70 orang dan bahan binaan utama seperti batu-bata dan juga marmar di import dari Italy. Banyak tragedi berlaku ketika pembinaan istana ini dan ramai pekerja binaan terkorban akibat penyakit ganjil ketika itu dan memaksa beliau mendapatkan pandangan alternatif dari segi spiritual. Mengikut nasihat dan kepercayaan dari ilmuan India, Tuan Kellie mesti membina sebuah kuil untuk mententeramkan tuhan mereka.
Menurut dari pembacaan saya di beberapa artikel internet, penyakit misteri yang di maksudkan itu adalah "Spanish Flu" dimana flu ini dengan mudah merebak dari Europe ke benua Asia. Tuan Kellie meghabiskan banyak wang ringgit dan kekayaannya untuk pembinaan rumah ini namun tidak juga berjaya di siapkan kerana perang dunia pertama meletus dan memperlahankan proses pembinaannya.
Istana ini mempunyai menara setinggi 6 tingkat dan mempunyai acra Moorish yang banyak dan mempunyai seni ukir Greco Roman. Pada tahun 1926 Tuan William Smith Kellie pergi ke Lisbon Portugal untuk lawatan singkat ke sana namun dia meninggal dunia akibat radang paru-paru. Isteri beliau di Malaya sangat sedih dan kecewa lalu dia berhasrta untuk balik semula ke Scotland dan menjual bangunan ini kepada sebuah syarikat British bernama Harrisons and Crossfield. Istana ini tidak siap hinggalah ke hari ini dan ada lagenda mengatakan roh hantu tuan Kellie sentiasa berlegar di beberapa tempat di istana ini. Selain itu trerdapat leganda mengatakan terdapat terowong rahsia yang menghubingi kuil yang berhampiran dengan istana ini.
Hal ini diperkukuhkan lagi dengan berita penemuan terowong pada Jun 2003 ketika projek pembesaran jalan di lakukan di sepanjang 6 kilometer Gopeng-Batu Gajah, pekerja pembinaan secara tidak sengaja tergali sebahagian terowong yang dipercayai menghala ke kuil Hindu berhampiran. Ia dijumpai ketika pekerja excavator tergali struktur kayu bawah tanah, pihak muzeum ketika itu tidak memberikan apa-apa pengesahan namun berjanji akan melakukan siasatan lanjut.
Sejarah bagaimana Tuan Kellie berjaya di sini adalah ketika beliau berhijrah ke Malaya di usia 20 tahun itu, beliau berjumpa dan berkenalan rapat dengan kontraktor bernama Alma Baker di Pulau Pinang, Alma baker adalah kontraktor ladang di Kinta dan Tuan Kellie membantu beliau membina jalan awam di Selatan Perak, serta menjadi rakan kongsi Alma Baker dan membeli 960 ekar tanah di Daerah Kinta untuk menanam pokok getah, kemudian estet itu dinamakan sebagai Kinta Kellas. Selain itu Tuan Kellies juga dikatakan menceburi perniagaan di bidang pengalian bijih timah dengan tertubuhnya lombong bijih timah dan syarikat Kinta Kellas Dredging Company.
Dikatakan bahawa William Kellie Smith membuat lawatan singkat ke Britian dulu, dan sebab lawatan ini tidak di ketahui dengan kukuh namun ada mengatakan ia menghadiri reunion singkat dengan isteri dan anak-anaknya. Anthony telah dihantar pulang ke kampung halaman untuk menyambung pelajarannya di sana dan Agnes (isteri Tuan Kellie) menemaninya. Sekembalinya ke Europe, Tuan Kellie membuat detour ke Lisbon, Portugal untuk mengambil lift untuk istana Kellie yang telah dipesan dulu namun dia tidak berjaya pulang ke Malaya kerana meninggal dunia akubat penyakit radang paru-paru. Pada December 1926 William Kellie Smith di kebumikan dia British Cemerety dan isteri beliau Agens menjual semua share dalam syarikat dan juga semua ladang yang ada, hingga kini dia tidak lagi datang ke Malaya.
Anthony Kellie Smith terbunuh ketika perang dunia kedua dan Helen tidak pernah lagi kembali ke sini.
Pada pokok ini di katakan terdapat bentuk seperti seekor beruang yang sedang berpaut / berpeluk pada batang pokok, cuba anda perhatikan di mana atas adalah mukanya yang memandang ke sini serat tangan kanan memegang dahan dan kaki seperti mahu memanjat. Hal ini ditemui oleh seorang pelakon terkenal Gerak Khas iaitu Zulkifli ketika mahu bergambar bersama dengan anak-anak, hal ini adalah merupakan satu penemuan baru pada tahun 2007
Menara di Kellie's Castle yang menjadi satu ikon prominent pada binaan ini menempatkan beberapa ruang seperti :
- lorong ke tingkat atas,
- laluan utama ketingkat atas,
- bilik-bilik tetamu,
- bilik bacaan,
- ruang lift,
- ruang pesta (party),
- ruang simpanan barang kering (cadar, bantal, etc),
- simpanan arak (wine cellar),
- ruang minuman (Tuan Kellie bersama rakan-rakan)
Jika anda ke sini anda akan dapat lihat ia mempunyai beberapa bahagian seperti rumah utama, klinik, court yard, tempat tinggal para pekerja dan juga dapur ruang memasak. Lantai yang di gunakan di rumah utama dan terrace ke rumah pekerja adalah dari jenis terracota dan ia nampak cantik dan masih teratur.
Sunday, March 1, 2009
Kellie's Castle ( Kellie's Folly) surrounding by the river is located near Batu Gajah , Ipoh , Perak , Malaysia. The unfinished, ruined mansion, was built by a Scottish planter called William Kellie Smith . According to differing accounts, it was either a gift for his wife or a home for his son.
William Kellie Smith was from a village in Scotland known as Kellas. In 1890, at the age of 20, he arrived in the then undeveloped Malaya Here, he met an estate owner called Alma Baker, who had won concessions from the state government to clear 360 hectares of forests in Perak. With the substantial profits made from his business venture with Alma Baker, Smith started planting rubber trees and dabbled in the tin mining industry. In time, he became the owner of Kinta Kellas Estate and the Kinta Kellas Tin Dredging Company.
Now with his fortune made, he returned home to marry his Scottish sweetheart, Agnes, and brought her over to Malaysia in 1903. The following year, the couple was blessed with a daughter whom they named Helen. For many years after that, Agnes tried to conceive, but to no avail. William Smith desperately wanted a son and heir to take over his empire in the Malay Isles .After many years, Agnes finally gave birth to a son, Anthony, in 1915. The birth of his child was the start of even greater success for William Smith. To celebrate Anthony's birth, William Smith decided to expand on his mansion. Smith started planning for a huge castle which he planned to call Kellas House, after his hometown in Scotland.
Because of his fascination with the Hindu religion and the Indian culture, Smith's plan was for this house to share similar architecture to those of Madras, with all its bricks and tiles imported from India. He even employed a big group of Indian labourers to build his dream house, to keep the Kellas House authentically Indian. The mansion is accessible from the main road through a bridge running across a stream.
But it was not only the cost of importing material and labourers from abroad that made the house so fascinating to locals and travellers alike. Among the many amazing things about Kellie's Castle are an elevator (it was the first in Malaya) which connects right up to the top floor, and the existence of two tunnels that run under the river nearby. One of these tunnels connects to the Hindu temple some distance away from the main house. On the second floor, Smith planned to build an indoor tennis court — an ambitious project even by today's standards. On the highest floor, there is a rooftop courtyard for parties. This castle was to be the hub for entertaining wealthy colonial planters who had settled in Malaya. His house was so unique that it was even mentioned in the London Financier newspaper on 15 September 1911
Construction difficulties and Smith's death
Unfortunately for Smith, tragedies struck soon after the construction of the Kellas House began. A virulent strain of the Spanish flu spread from Europe to soon after World War I ended in Europe, killing many of the workers in the Kellas Estate. Another seventy workers constructing Smith's dream castle also became victims of the flu. Smith, who had already spent a fortune on his house, lost a lot of money because of this.
In the end, Kellas House, later known as Kellie's Castle or even Kellie's Folly to some, was never completed. William Kellie Smith himself died of pneumonia during a short trip to Portugal in 1926. His heartbroken wife decided to pack up and return home to Scotland selling the estate and Kellie's Castle to a British company called Harrisons and Crosfield.
All these years faded into memory, the castle has been reconditioned to serve as a visitor spot and enjoy the scenery and breeze at the rooftop.Descendants of the Tamil labourers brought over to Malaya to work on the mansion still live nearby even now. Kellie's Castle is now a popular local tourist attraction and was used as a setting in the 1999 film Anna and the King.
Myths... legends... rumors...
There have been many myths or legends or rumors spreading around about the mysterious castle.
Some say that the Smith's spirit still wandering inside the castle, especially along the corridors, guarding his great mansion. And that's why much of the structure still intact after so many years.
Some say there are lots of "spirits" wandering around the castle since workers died during the construction and people died during the 2nd world war.
It is believed that there are 4 underground tunnels. One is connecting the Kellies Castle to the Hindu temple 500m in the west, one is connecting to the main gate garage in the south and one is connecting to the road in the east.
How about the last one? It's still undiscovered. There are rumors about this secret tunnel had been used as an execution hub of the Japanese army in World War II. And some say it was the secret tunnel being used by Chen Ping (the famous communist leader in Malaya) in between 50s to 60s.
Some say the Smith's car is parked in one of the tunnels.
According to the story, William Kellie Smith, the owner, wanted to build the tower high enough until he can see the town of Ipoh. if this tower was ever completed, it would probably be 7 storeys high.
Bridge over River
View From First Floor
Windows and Doors
Mansion and Kellie Castle
To Be Continue........