Friday, 20 June 2008
Visiting the Klang White House
The Sultan Abdul Aziz Royal Gallery
I visited the Sultan Abdul Aziz Royal Gallery in Klang after attending mentions in the Klang lower courts on Thursday, 19th June. Locally known as the “Klang White House”, the building was constructed in 1909 and once housed, in chronological order, the British administrators during the colonial period, the Japanese Armed Forces during the Japanese Occupation of the then Malaya and the Klang District Office, Royal Malaysian Police Force and Klang Municipal Council post-independence.
The 8th Sultan of Selangor, Sultan Salahuddin Abdul Aziz Shah Alhaj, had the building reclaimed and converted into the Sultan Abdul Aziz Royal Gallery to house and display royal paraphernalia, artifacts and memorabilia. The building was incredibly well-kept and exuded an old world charm, and I spent a highly enjoyable hour going through all the exhibits and learning more about the Selangor Royal Family.
Although I was, as always, fascinated by the military paraphernalia, I had greatest context for the Selangor Silver Jubilee (1985) memorabilia collection. Schoolchildren in the state of Selangor each received a commemorative exercise book and a pewter pin. Being all of 6 years old in 1985, I was thrilled and believed that we would get presents from our kind Sultan every year. I learned with disappointment when I reached home that Silver Jubilee meant it was the 25th anniversary of an occurrence - in our case, the installation of the Sultan. It was impossible that there would ever be a silver jubilee again in my schooling years.
Strangely enough, although the exercise book was displayed, the pewter pin wasn’t. Perhaps the curator did not know of it, or did not have a sample of the pin. I believe I have 2 at home (mine and the Twin’s), and if I manage to find them, I might want to donate one to the Gallery to complete their collection.