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Saturday June 9, 2007
DOWN MEMORY LANE
By DEBBIE CHAN
While most roads are congested during rush hours, this one sees heavy traffic on weekend nights when folks throng the many night spots in the city.
Mutiara Crowne Plaza, Equatorial, Shangri-La, Sheraton Imperial, Parkroyal, Renaissance and Concorde are among the many hotels along the road while Hard Rock Café, Nouvo, Life Centre and Espanda come alive at night.
Currently named after the third Sultan of Johor, the road was previously known as Treacher Road, after the second resident general of Federated States of Malaya Sir William Hood Treacher.
Treacher who was born in 1849 took on the post of resident general in 1901 but prior to that, he was the governor of North Borneo from 1881 to 1887.
He led the North Borneo Company and took over the governance of Sabah during the conquest of East Malaysia when James Brooke took over Sarawak in 1841.
He was also one of the founding fathers of Victoria Institution, having initiated a fund using unspent Treasury money collected for the 1887 celebration of the Golden Jubilee of Queen Victoria, to establish the school.
The foundation stone of the school was laid by his wife Lady Treacher on Aug 14, 1893 and Treacher went on to become the first president of the Board of Trustees of VI.
On March 10 of the same year, he also officially declared the opening of the Anglo-Chinese School in Klang.
On the local end, Sultan Sir Ismail Al Khalidi of Johor was born on Oct 28, 1894 at Istana Semayam and was the eldest son of Sultan Ibrahim and Sultanah Ungku Maimunah.
When he was a year old, he was proclaimed Tunku Mahkota and later often presided over administrative matters, as Sultan Ibrahim was regularly overseas.
Sultan Ismail was officially crowned on Feb 10, 1960 at Istana Besar Johor Baru.
He was known to be an animal lover and was known among the local Chinese community as “Lau Sultan” which means “elderly Sultan”.
He had two wives who served as Sultanahs of Johor, Ungku Tun Aminah Ungku Ahmad and Tengku Nora Tengku Panglima Raja Ahmad.
Sultan Ismail had seven children, including the current Johor Sultan Iskandar. Sultan Ismail passed away on May 10, 1981.
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