Historical Buildings - Lighthouses
The Malay Federation was well known among the traders, and they called it the sate at the end of land. Its strategic location in the Asian Continent was well exemplified by the trading activities carried out. The Straits of Malacca also contributed to the importance of the Malay Federation as a trading and maritime centre.
When the Portugese conquered Malacca in 1511, the Straits of Malacca, for the first time, fell under a European power. The Portugese later charged ships which ply the Straits for payments. The arrival of the Portugese was an important watershed in the history of this region.
The lighthouses in Malaysia have its origin during the British rule since 1826. There were 15 lighthouses that were collectively known as the Straits Settlement Lighthouses. Among the lighthouses that are still operational are the Tanjung Tuan (Cape Rachado), Muka Head, Pulau Undan, Fort Cornwallis (formerly known as Fort Point) and Pulau Rimau.
Pulau Undan Lighthouse
The Pulau Undan Lighthouse was built in 1880 at Pulau Undan, Melaka. It is the second lighthouse built in this country. The lighthouse has an octagonal shaped tower, built on top of a building. With a total height of 15 meters, the bright red tower can be seen from as far as 18 nautical miles in good weather. This lighthouse is located at 02°03'N and 102°20'E.
Muka Head Lighthouse
The Muka Head Lighthouse is the second lighthouse to be built in Penang’s waters. The construction of this gray granite tower was completed in 1883 with a height of 14 meters. It was built in the northwest of Penang Island and located at 05°28'N and 100°11'E.
Permatang Sedepa Lighthouse
In 1874, Screw Pile lighthouse was launched. The name Screw Pile was given to the design of the lighthouse being built on top of metal piles buried as deep as 11 feet 6 inches. In 1907 it was replaced with a new structure called the One Fathom Bank Lighthouse.
This particular lighthouse has its origin in a report by hydrography survey, General Thomson, who reported the existence of a sand bank at the coordinates of 03°10'N and 101 °00'E, between North Sands and South Sands, in the Straits of Malacca. The sandbank emerges during low tide, with waters depth of not more than two and a half fathoms and is now being preserved as a memorial.
The new One Fathom Bank Lighthouse was completed in 1999. It has a 43 meter tower, and is equipped with the latest lighting system. Its pilot light can be seen from as far as 23 nautical miles. The jetty and building structures are made from concrete, while the tower is fabricated from metal. The roof is made from polycarbonate and polished metal. This new lighthouse is located parallel to the old one, at 02°53.3'N and 100°59.8'E.
Kuala Selangor Lighthouse
The Kuala Selangor Lighthouse was built in 1907. The 27 meter tower was built on top of Bukit Melawati, giving it a commanding view of the surrounding area. The pilot light can be seen from 18 nautical miles away. The construction of the lighthouse was believed to have been undertaken by the Federation of Malay States. The lighthouse is also known as the Altingsburg Lighthouse, in honour of the Dutch Governor who overran the fort in 1784. Besides the lighthouse, Bukit Melawati also has within its area various historical remains that serve as a reminder to the past.
Tanjung Tuan Lighthouse
The Tanjung Tuan Lighthouse is the oldest lighthouse still in operation in Malaysia. The white cylindrical shaped tower started operating in 1863. With a height of 24 meters, its pilot light can be seen from a distance of 23 nautical miles. The Tanjung Tuan Lighthouse is located at 02°10'N and 101°51'E.
Date of Issue: 24th May 2003
Historical Places - Clock Towers
Watermark SPM. P.14 Des. Warna Ilham.
Litho by Percetakan Keselamatan Negara Sdn. Bhd.