|Welcome to "Roots"|
|Mr Supramaniam's family tree|
Interviews of family members, particularly older ones, is essential - but memories fade and grow imperfect over time, so must be supplemented by searching through old records - old newspapers, birth and death registers, burial records, land registers, company registers and so on - rather like detective work. One lady, Ms Christine Moss, was under the impression that her ancestor, Captain Mark Moss, had sailed to Singapore on a boat called the "Black Duke". But she could not find any records of the "Black Duke". Eventually, she found a newspaper report that her ancestor, a Captain Mark Moss was sailing on the "Black Joke" when the ship was attacked by pirates near Macau. He was the sole survivor of the attack and subsequently came to Singapore on a ship called the "Sultana" - quite a different story altogether.
|Embroidery pattern book|
I came away from the exhibition happy that my approach towards tracing family history (interviewing older family members, web searches, visiting Bukit Brown) appeared to be on the right track. Other tips also give me new avenues to pursue in finding out more about my family - learning, for example, that the words above the house door can also be the name of the home village in China, that the Chinese also keep meticulous geneologies of their clan. It gives me hope that if I only persevere I will succeed, one day, in finding the name of my mysterious ancestor
The other great take-away from the exhibition? The Resource Guide full of more useful tips and information on resources available in Singapore for this detective work. Go for the exhibition, get a copy!