The oldest was 46 and the youngest were 18. Mostly they were young men who worked hard at their chosen careers, loved sport, travel and a bit of adventure. Some of them were Straits-born, others came East or North to further their careers. They left to serve their countries in the hope, if not the expectation, of a return which in the end was denied them.
In common with many similar projects around the world, the Singapore Cenotaph Project was inspired by the upcoming First World War Centenary when it was initiated in 2013. The project's main aims are to collect the records of these men for safekeeping so that in future they will not be forgotten. Two years later and a book has been published about the men who are listed on what was once known as the Straits Settlements War Memorial. Their names have been recalled in 112 stories. Twelve are still to be found, and will be.
One of these men helped design and build Singapore's improving sewerage system. One was an expert in designing, building and running tramways. Three were lawyers. One was a doctor who gave lectures on public health and first aid. One was a police inspector. Three worked on steamships. Three worked for the Harbour Board. Two were architects. One was an accountant. One helped establish Cold Storage. Several worked for the Straits Settlements Civil Service. More worked in mercantile companies. Many were planters. Seven were French, three of them Catholic priests. Others were Australian, Scottish, Welsh, Irish, English, Canadian. Three or more were Eurasian Straits-born British.
You can find more details on who they were for free by downloading their files in Names. You may also like to assist the project through buying the eBook or the paperback book. If you would like more information on how to volunteer please use the Contact Form.
The Singapore Cenotaph Project
Forgotten Names Recalled