Thursday, September 23, 2010

Dunlop Road & Major Samuel Dunlop

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Dunlop Road or Jalan Dunlop

Dunlop Road is located between Anson Road and Dato Keramat Road. It is a side road off the two main roads.

Dunlop road, the name of Dunlop is popular in Malaysia, Dunlop tyre, Dunlop Plantation, is it named after John Boyd Dunlop (5 February 1840 – 23 October 1921)or John Dunlop? He was a Scottish inventor. He was one of the founders of the rubber company that bore his name, Dunlop Pneumatic Tyre Company. The famous Dunlop brand.... No, the road is not named after Dunlop brand or its founder.

Dunlop Road is named after Colonel Samuel Dunlop(b 1838-1917), the first Inspector General of Police, Strait Settlement. He was acting resident councillor of Penang, from 1884 to 1885.

Interestingly, during the period when Major John Frederick Adolphus McNair become Acting Lieutenant Governor from 1881 to 1884. Colonel Anson retired officially in 1882. That was the time Seven Streets Precinct was developed by Major McNair, and McNair Street was named after him, near Anson Bridge. Major Samuel Dunlop(1884-1885) succeeded Major McNair, a street was named Dunlop Road, located off Anson Road)

There is a side road called Merican Road connecting the Dunlop Road to Pahang Road, Merican Road is also a crescent-shaped road in George Town, its both ends open to Pahang Road. Merican Road may be named after Merican family of Penang or it may be named after Abdur Cauder Merican or Caudeer Mydin (Mohudeen) Merican,or Abdul Qauder Mohideen Merican( b1759 - d1834), the first Kapitan Kling of Penang. Kader Mydin Merican was a trader who became one of the richest men in the Penang of the 1830s. That he eminence rise in the Indian Muslim community was acknowledged by the British who appointed him Kapitan Keling. The fourth generation Merican produced the clan's first doctor, Dr Ali Osman Merican. `Oss', as he was called, was in fact Penang's first Malay doctor. Sheikh Basha Merican, was an educator who was instrumental in establishing and heading Rida College, the forerunner of Institute Teknologi Mara (ITM). Marina Yusoff, the country's second Malay woman lawyer who at one time landed an Umno Supreme Council seat, is a clan member. Kassim Merican worked in the Civil Service and his last appointment was as Superintendent of Mines in Kedah. In the article "History of the Chinese Recreation Club Penang 1892-1952" by Toh Hooi Choon, mentioned of Kassim Merican, who was one of the founders of the Chinese Recreation Club, he was the only non-Chinese member. Originally fromn Samarkand, the Mericans are now a melting pot of races ad cultures. Through intermarriage and cross-cultural exchanges, the Mericans have assimilated themselves with the Malay connunity.

There is another road around the area called Lorong Seratus Tahun(百年路), the road is in Malay which means hundred years road. The Chinese also called it pa-nee-lor. Can it be it was built 100 years after the founding of Penang as Britain's colony. 100 years after 1786, that is 1886. At that time, Major Dunlop had left Penang to Singapore, and become the Inspector General of Police Strait Settlement for the 2nd term. Allan Maclean Skinner was the Resident Councillor of Penang from 1887–1897. Sir Cecil Clementi Smith was Governor of the Crown Colony of the Straits Settlements at Singapore from 17 October 1887 to 30 August 1893.

But physically the area around Dunlop Road is a residential area, the houses are not prewar houses, the houses are much later than houses around Lorong Seratus Tahun. The houses are built probably after the war, may be in 20th century. The road may however built earlier. The Dunlop Street in Singapore was named in 1870s( source:

Colonel Samuel Dunlop

Samuel Dunlop CMG (b1838 - d1917) held the posts of Acting Commissioner of Police and Inspector General of Police in the Straits Settlements between 1870 until his retirement in 1891.

DUNLOP, Col. Samuel, CMG 1884 ; late RA ; born and baptized in 8th Mar. 1838

1856 - Educated at Royal Military Academy. Woolwich ; He was first Lt on 7-4-1856(source: Army List 1867)

He married in 1864, with Martha, daughter of Robt. Potts of Belfast.


He was the staff of Royal Military Academy. Woolwich as Lieutenants of Companies of Gentleman Cadets(source: The Public Schools Calendar, 1866, by gilbert and revington)
Entered RA 1866 and served until Nov 1870 when he become Acting Com of Police SS; retired as Hon. Col in 1882. He was captain on 10-10-1866

He was Acting Commissioner of Police. Straits Settlements in Nov 1870 for Thomas Dunman (1857-1871); acting police magistrate

1872 - Capt Samuel Dunlop was ordered to rejoin his battery in Hong Kong in 1872, he resigned in 1872 and was replaced by Captain Berger , who was Acting Superintendent of Police Penang, of 10th Regiment(source: Straits Times Overland Journal, 28 March 1872, Page 4, The Straits Times, 23 March 1872, Page 1 )

But the Government of the Straits Settlements specially asked for his return and he did so in November 1872, take up the appointment of Inspector General of Police. He held this office until he retired to England in 1890 or 1891?(source: The British as rulers: governing multiracial Singapore, 1867-1914; by Edwin Lee, Singapore University Press, National University of Singapore, 1991) Note: should be Commissioner of Police not Inspector General of Police, which he was appointed only in 1875)

Perak 1874-1876
1874 - Pangkor Treaty

Captain Samuel Dunlop, the Inspector-General, to Perak to invite all the Malay rajas and chiefs to meet him at Pangkor on 14th January 1874 for general talks, they were however not to be told the actual purpose of the meeting.

The Pangkor meeting took place in the middle of January 1874 on board the H. M. S. Pluto moored off the picturesque Island of Pangkor, off Perak state – the oldest Sultanate of the three Western states. Major Samuel Dunlop was one of the members of British team.

The three parties involved in the fateful engagement were the British, the Malay rulers, and the Chinese.

British Officials Present were:

* Major-General Sir Andrew Clarke, the Governor, Commander-in-Chief, and Vice-Admiral of the Straits Settlements
* Mr. Bradell, the Attorney-General
* Major J.F.A. McNair, the Colonial Engineer
* Colonel Samuel Dunlop, the Inspector-General of Police
* Mr. A.M. Skinner of the Secretariat
* William A. Pickering, officer in charge of Chinese affairs
* Frank A. Swettenham, interpreter of Malay from the Land Revenue Office

The Malay rulers present were

* Raja Abdullah
* Raja Idris
* Raja Bendahara
* the Mantri Ngah Ibrahim
* the Temenggong
* the Shahbandar
* the Raja Mahkota
* the Laxamana
* the Dato Sagor

Twenty six Chinese were present, led by their respective headmen, Chin Ah Yam of the Ghee Hins and Chung Keng Quee of the Hai Sans as well as Chinese interpreter, (Marcus Chong or Wong Ah Chong).

(source: wikipedia)

He was temporary Special Commr. for Perak affairs and Commr. to HM's Forces during operations in Perak


In 1875 he was appointed to the Commission for the Pacification of Larut serving alongside fellow commissioners McNair, Swettenham, Pickering and Capitans China Chung Keng Quee and Chin Seng Yam.

Colonel S. Dunlop was appointed Commissioner in Perak shortly after the commencement of hostilities in November 1875, after the murder of Mr. J. W. W. Birch(James Wheeler Wooodford Birch),the first British Resident of Perak on 2-11-1875 at Pasir Salak. He was appointed Special Commissioner temporarily for Perak affairs or Acting Commissioner Perak. He organised the expedition which captured the Pasir Salak stockades, and was present at their capture. During the December 1875 operations in Perak he was Commissioner to the Forces, and accompanied General Colborne's force up the Perak River and across country to Kinta. The expedition is later called Perak War(1875-1876).
In Sungei Ujong(now Seremban), two prominent Rajas struggled for control of the main river artery. The Linggi River served as the sole outlet to ferry tin and supplies in and out of the town. Revenue came not only from tin trade but also from the large amount of taxes collected, much to the displeasure of the traders and the British colonialists at the neighbouring port of Malacca. The local chieftains namely, the Dato’ Kelana and the Dato’ Shahbandar of Sungai Ujong were at odds with each other on the rights to collect taxes and ownership and control of the mines. The rivalry developed into a state of civil war, when the Malay rivals allies with the Chinese secret societies. From 1871-1873, the development of civil war had adversely affected the coastal shipping, intensify piracy and posed security threat to the Strait Settlement where the secret societies had their headquarters.

1874- Sungei Ujong

By April 1874 Clarke was negotiating with the chiefs of Sungei Ujong, the most important state of Negri Sembilan, where Chinese tin miners were a prey to illegal 'tax collectors'.

It was a commitment which led Clarke, late in 1874, to send a small detachment of troops to Sungai Ujong to protect their man and destroy the power of the Dato' Shahbandar. In November 1874 Captain Samuel Dunlop was sent as Commissioner with the forces dispatched to quell the disturbances in Sungei Ujong. The British sided with the Dato’ Kelana upon invitation and defeated the forces of the Dato’ Bandar who was later sent into exile to Singapore. In a show of gratitude to the British for helping him win the war, the Dato’ Kelana had no choice but to accept a British Resident.

In 1874, Sir A. Clark, the then Governor, acting in British interests, placed British residents in Perak, Selangor, and the small State of Sungei Ujong. These residents were to advise the rulers in matters of revenue and general administration. Sungei Ujong, the third state to accept a British Resident, it is one of the small states which make up the modern Negri Sembilan. British rule was established in Sungai Ujong in September 1874, Captain Walter J. Tatham RA. was appointed Assistant Resident to Sungai Ujong in December 1874.

1875-1884 Inspector General of Police,Strait Settlement 1875

He was appointed as Inspector General of Police, Strait Settlement in 1875, took over from CB Plunket, a former Commissioner of Police, Strait Settlement. Captain Dunlop was the first Inspector General of Police Strait Settlement.

When the Straits Settlements (Singapore, Malacca, Penang) became a Crown Colony in 1867, the role of the police commissioner was expanded to include that of the entire Straits Settlements, with the title changed to that of Inspector-General of Police. This lasted until the Japanese Occupation of Singapore in 1942, before the post was restored as the Commissioner of Police in 1946 with the return of the British and the gradual in statement of local rule.

In 1875 Captain Dunlop became Inspector-General of Police for the whole Colony ; this title had been introduced in 1871 by the Police Force Ordinance(note: Mr Dunman was actually succeeded by former Singapore Police Magistrate BC Plunket, as Commissioner of Police on 18-8-1871, but the title of IGP even had been introduced, but not implemented yet, only in 1875, Colonel Samuel Dunlop become the first IGP, strait settlement).

1877 - The Singapore directory for the Straits Settlements 1877 reported he was the IGP in 1877. He remained in the police until 1884. He was appointed Acting Resident Councillor in Penang (Acting Lieutenant Governor of Penang, acting when Major John Frederick Adolphus McNair retired as Resident Councillor) from 1884-1885 which post he held for a year, and then returned to the police.

1882 - retired from the military force, Royal Artillery as honorary Colonel

1884-1885 Acting Resident Councillor in Penang

Acting Resident Councillor in Penang, awarded CMG in 1884.

He remained in the police until 1884. He was appointed Acting Resident Councillor in Penang, (Acting Lieutenant Governor of Penang) from 1884-1885 which post he held for a year, and then returned to the police. In 1884-1885, Robert Walter Maxwell act as IGP.

1885-1891 Inspector General(2nd time)

He returned to police and continue as Inspector General of Police for 2nd times, until he retired from the police force in 1891, succeed by R W Maxwell (1891-1895). In 1889, he was president of Singapore municipal commission.

No information obtained about his life after his retirement.

1917 - he passed away at 74 Cromwell Avenue, London


Dunlop Road in Penang and Singapore(in Little India, Singapore) were named after him.


He married in 1864, Martha,daughter of Robert Potts of Belfast, Ireland.

The Straits Times, 5 April 1930, Page 11, the death of widow of late Colonel Samuel Dunlop, Martha, on 4th April 1930 at London, age 88 years.

His issue:-

i)Mary Dunlop(1900-1947)at Chester Terrace, Regent's Park, London married to William Paterson Waddell.

Related articles

1. The Straits Times, 11 March 1876, Page 1(about Perak)
2. London Gazette/Corresp: Actions of Perak Expeditionary Force post-murder of Birch,
3. The Perak War,
4. Dunlop Street(Singapore),
5. The Merican clan: a story of courage and destiny; by Ragayah, Ragayah Eusoff, published by Times Books International, 1997. The Merican Clan - A Story of Courage and Destiny which chronicles the achievements of seven generations of Mericans, the progeney of Kader Mydin Merican who first set foot in Penang from India in 1770.

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