Monday, 19 March 2012

Rumah Banda Hilir (4)

Deaths at Rumah Banda Hilir

Many people have died at Rumah Banda Hilir. I'm working out the possible namelist of people who died in that house.

From Bapak:
When Bapak and I visited Rumah Banda Hilir, Bapak had told me that 8 people had died in Rumah Banda Hilir. Bapak was not sure if they were 8 generations. He named a few of them but I cannot recall the names he mentioned. However, below is a possible list that I can construct for now until someone can provide a more definite list.

Possible names of those who died at Rumah Banda Hilir
(8 people)

1. Mohd Yusope bin Haji Mohd Sharif

He was Bapak's father who was called Walid by his children. Walid died in 1953/54 after Bapak returned from England. Bapak and Walid corresponded when Bapak was in England. Some of the letters were interesting. Will upload later, insyaAllah.

Walid is buried at the ancestral graves in Tanah Perkuburan Masjid Semabok, Melaka. His tombstone is a large one and there should be an empty grave plot beside his grave as his wife (Nenek Inche) was not buried beside him but in Gombak area. The 2 other graves in front are also related (that's as far as I can remember Bapak told me).

I visited Tanah Perkuburan Masjid Semabok on 4 June 2016. I could not see Tok Walid's gravestones as the adjacent brick wall had collapsed onto his grave.

2. Haji Mohd Sharif bin Ismail 

He was Bapak's paternal grandfather whom Bapak called Datuk Mohd Sharif.
He died at age 38. No date of death is known. No date of birth is known.

Bapak showed me where Datuk Mohd Sharif is buried at Tanah Perkuburan Masjid Semabok when I was a small girl. I followed him from rumah Pak Ji Usop. We walked through the long grasses. I remember walking through a brick enclosure and coming to his grave.

As I recall from my visit with Bapak when I was small, tok moyang Hj Mohd Sharif had a big gravestone (batu nisannya amat besar) at his footside. It was under a tree - like a papaya tree with big leaves.

Kak Bibah and Abang Moin informed that his grave is at the left of the mimbar. So if I stand inside the masjid and face Qiblat, his grave is on the left.

I visited Tanah Perkuburan Masjid Semabok on 4 June 2016. The graveyard is sited on a steep hill slope with sharp red laterite bricks. There were some trees. I saw  only 2 'smaller' gravestones of my tok moyang. The retaining wall is extant but collapsed at several places, even onto his son's grave. The nameplate is destroyed and illegible (can't read anything engraved on his tombstone).

3. Patma bt Mohamad (isteri Haji Mohd Sharif)

Her grave is beside her husband's grave at Tanah Perkuburan Masjid Semabok. No further information at her grave.

4. Ismail bin Saleh

He was said to be a Yemeni Hadhrami Arab (orang Arab dari Hadhramaut, Yaman).
I have doubts about his origin because how can Ismail originate from Hadhramaut if his father was named in Haji Mohd Sharif's Wasiat (Will)?
The location of his grave is unknown. Probably at Jalan Panjang graveyard.

5. Inche Nyonia bt Haji Sahabudin (wife of Ismail)

She is the wife of Ismail bin Saleh. Her family was from Tengkera, Malacca.

6. Saleh bin Khatib Usuf

No info on him at this time.
He is the son of a khatib (learned man).
The location of his grave is unknown. Probably at Jalan Panjang graveyard.

7. Khatib Usuf bin ___

No info on him at this time.
He was a learned man. His name bears the term khatib.
The location of his grave is unknown. Probably at Jalan Panjang graveyard.

8. Haji Shahbuddin bin Mohd Amin (asal Cirebon, Tanah Jawa)

Abang Moin said his daughter married to Ismail.

As far as the family tree goes, and from the Wasiat that Bapak gave me to keep, Ismail married to Inche Nyonia bt Sahabudin, and Inche Nyonia was from Tengkera, Malacca. Bapak said there is Makam Shahbuddin in Tengkera, but I have not been able to locate it.

However, I visited Kubor Jalan Panjang on 4 June 2016, and there is a Makam Shahbuddin bin Mohd Amin, founder of Masjid Banda Hilir, at the end of edge of the graveyard near the bamboo trees at Kubor Jalan Panjang. The shrine is painted yellow and with a high perimeter wall. The metal plate bears his name.

If he build Masjid Banda Hilir, he must have a house on the grounds or nearby the masjid. So it is possible that he built the first and oldest portion of Rumah Banda Hilir - the rear portion. He probably made the older rear part of Rumah Banda Hilir. Would the rear portion last that long? I don't know.

And the brick well and kitchen area far below? I don't know and I have no idea. The brick and well portion far down below looked out of place, like it didn't belong there and didn't come from our civilisation. I think it came from a foregin civilisation, most probably the Portuguese. Most likely they were Portuguese because the stairs were so steep and the staircase very narrow and very high. The well was well-built but it didn't resemble any of the wells built by the Malays which I have seen. So these might be the only Portuguese structures of the Banda Hilir house.

The wooden part of the front house had Malay Minangkabau structure for its exterior roofs and walls but I think it had Dutch double-doors and louvres for the window in the front anjung.

The 2 brick staircases and the small green window in the toilet were definitely Chinese features. The staircases were always painted chalk-white which is interesting because Chinese have tiled staircase and whitewashed houses is a feature of the southern European abodes - Italian, Spanish, Greek or Portuguese.

I really think that Rumah Banda Hilir had all the homestead features of her conquerors - Portuguese whitewashed walls (casa blanca), Chinese porcelain windows and staircases, Dutch double-doors and louvres, and Minangkabau roofs, walls and attic. The roof tiles were from Malacca, but it is unknwon which factory made them. Overall, tt was a good home of my ascendants who were Javanese Muslims, Minangkabau Muslims and Arab Muslims.

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