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Yap Kwan Seng Memorial / 葉觀盛墓園

Yap Kwan Seng Memorial / 葉觀盛墓園

His name in Traditional Chinese – 葉觀盛 and in Simplified Chinese – 叶观盛.

Born 1846, Yap Kwan Seng is the last Chinese Kapitan of Kuala Lumpur. After his passing, the position of kapitan was abolished.

He moved from china to malaya at the age of 18 and work as a tin miner in Seremban before moving to Selangor to setup his own tin mining business.

Known for his philanthropic deeds and his many great contributions, He founded the Pooi Shin Thong / Pei Shan Tang / 培善堂 which provided the poor with free medical services. Pooi Shin Thong was later renamed to Tung Sing hospital (同善醫院) located along Jalan Pudu. There is much more that he has done.

Yap Kwan Seng passed away in 1902. Based on read up, It is said that he was originally buried at Maxwell Hill but when the government wanted the land for development, his remains were exhumed and are now placed at a pagoda at the Lian Lin temple (蓮林廟) in the Kwang Tung cemetery (廣東義山), Sg Besi.
It would be great to know the date his bones were exhumed and moved. This would be great historic value to future readers. There is an old man we met at the Kwangtung cemetery that has told us his exhumed bones were actually reburied at the opposite site of the Hockien cemetery but he could not tell me where exactly. If any of you knows where his original grave / tomb was before or when was his bones exhumed or where he is reburied, do email me or leave a comment.

His memorial plate was easy to find. As soon as you turn into the Lian Lin Temple area, and it’s just there.

Yap Kwan Seng is the last person to hold the Kapitan title in Kuala Lumpur and he’s also known as the person who developed a brick factory in the now known Brickfield area which was fill with clay on it’s surrounding area back then.

Yap Kwan Seng Memorial / 葉觀盛墓園1

Below:- Up close.

Yap Kwan Seng Memorial / 葉觀盛墓園2

My Time – – A web blog cataloging chinese temples in malaysia / 記錄馬來西亞廟宇文化.

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84 comments to Yap Kwan Seng Memorial / 葉觀盛墓園

  • avatar Jim McAnna

    Hi Yap Peng Siew – you mention your grandfather Yap Tai Kong. Could you please let me know if he was also known as Yap Tai Cheong ?
    Rgs Jim McAnna

  • avatar Jim McAnna

    Does anyone know – whenever Yap Kwan Seng visited Canton and/or Macao – was that reported in Chinese newspapers there ? He was certainly a VIP in Selangor and his activities reported in KL/Singapore press – I just wondered if he was also considered a VIP in Canton/Macao too? I dont read Chinese -I just wondered has anyone checked their old newspapers (I dont even know where to look)? I think he may have visited Canton sometime in 1895 (or possibly 1894) – anyone got any info on that visit ? Rgs Jim McAnna

  • avatar PK Yap


    Thank you for twice forwarding me the requests of Jim McAnna for information relating to my great grandfather, Kapitan Yap Kwan Seng and his descendants. Whilst I have with contributions from some generation members been tracing and mapping our family history and family tree, I’m not at this moment ready to share what I have with anyone that is not within the YKS family tree. Perhaps one day when we are ready we would make our family history available via an official website.
    Thank you.
    Yap Peng Kong

  • avatar Woan Jinn

    Anybody know for the 6th generation yap family what should be the middle chinese character? Kwan, tai, poh, peng, wai, x?

  • avatar Yap Peng Siew

    Sorry, I think it is Fook.

  • I am also a great grand son of YKS. My grand father was Yap Tai Yim & my father, Yap Pow Kim. I have a sister, Yap Soh Lan. I was born in 1945 & my sister in 1947.

    We found out from a lady who lived behind what used to be a Shell petrol station at the junction of Pudu & Circular road that the middle name for the 5th generation was to be “Wai/Wei”. This is some 35 yrs ago. Our 2 sons` middle names are “Wei”. Have been looking for the middle name for the 6th. generation – “Fook” it is according to Peng Siew.

    Great to be connecting . . .

    • avatar Yap Peng Kong

      To: Joyce (& Gary) Randall
      If your sister is Betty Teh living in Sydney, then you are the missing one in the lineage of Yap Tai Kim. I have been told of this by a grand daughter of Tai Kim but there was no further detail that I could gather. I look forward to getting in touch with you or Gary. Special interest here – my maternal grandfather is Tai Kim as my mother was his adopted daughter. My paternal grandfather is Yap Tai Wah.

      To: Yap Peng Siew
      My apologies. I now realise you may not have information on Yap Tai Cheong or Yap Tai Yam (Yim). Over the last year I have managed to meet up in Singapore with an uncle, Pow Thong (91 or 92 years old), son of Yap Tai Cheong and got some very valuable information from him.
      I’m not sure the 6th generation name is “Fook”. I would love to get in touch with you to clarify this. Among some of the cousins of our 4th generation (of Peng or Piang or Ping), there is the knowledge that after the 5th generation (of Wei or Wai), the generation names of Kwan (or Guan), Tai, Pow (or Poh), Peng (or Piang or Ping) and Wei (or Wai) would be repeated. I personally heard this from my grandmother when she was still alive. It would appear that this is mentioned in our Yap Family “zupu” but I have no way to verify this until I find someone who is fluent in old and modern Mandarin to translate the zupu (clan/family book).
      Btw, our cousin, Dr. Yap Piang Kian (from the Yap Tai Hong line) has used “Guan” as the generation name for his grandson (6th generation). This “Guan” was used by Yap Kwan Seng perhaps after he became a very successful tin miner but before he became Kapitan China of Selangor. I have a very old plate with his name “ Yap Guan Seng, Selangor”. This was given to me by cousin, Yap Peng Koong from the Yap Tai Chi line.

      To: Yap Piang Foh
      It’s great that you have appeared on the forum in this website. I have been looking for your family line for a while. Your grandfather’s name in my record, based on perhaps Cantonese pronunciation, is Yap Tai Yam. I have heard of his name being mentioned by my 2 grandfathers when I was very young. The only information I have is a daughter of Tai Yam (Yim), Yap Boo Rok who is married to Chua Boon Chin and they are in Vancouver. Let’s get in touch as I would like to fill in the blanks in your family line.
      Btw, can you recall the name of the lady who stayed behind the Shell Station at the Pudu/Circular Roads junction? The only one I know who stayed in that vicinity was my paternal grandfather, Yap Tai Wah with his 3rd wife and children.

      Everyone, please do get in touch with me so we can collectively fill in the missing links in our family lines.

      I would greatly appreciate if Admin72Dragon would give my email address to the 3 or 4 addressees here. Much appreciated. Thank you.

      Peng Kong (or Ping Kon or PK)

  • avatar Kelly Yap

    Hi! I just came across this and just want to introduce myself. My given name is Yap Weng Fong (but like to be called Kelly). I am the youngest sister of Yap Peng Siew.

    I was caught up in the discussion of the middle name and a long time ago when I was a young teenager, my mum had mentioned to me the middle name should be but for the life of me I cannot remember. That’s for being young and not listening. She did mention about a book in the temple in KL. Not sure if the temple or the book still exist.

    Sorry if I could not being of any more help.

    • avatar PK Yap

      Hi Kelly,

      Good to hear from another cousin from our generation.
      I would love to get in touch over email with you and Peng Siew.
      Please do contact me as I have given the administrator of this site to release my email address.


  • avatar daniel

    hi … my name is daniel ,i from malaysia,curretly our company are doing a documentary for kapitan yap kwan sing…..we need any info that can help us to make this documentaryas good as we can….pls email me

    • avatar AdminMy72dragon

      Hi Daniel, Will any profit from this documentary goes to charity?

    • avatar PK Yap

      My current policy is not to release family history or any details to outside the YKS descendants. There are various considerations but the primary one is that if authors and documentary producers want to write or do a documentary they should do their own researches. The most I can do if asked to comment on or review any scrip is to highlight any factual mistake that I have knowledge of.

  • avatar Rachel Liao

    Hi PK Yap, I think we are cousin’s. My mum, Yap Foong Chiew, is a sister to Yap Pow Thong (they are children of Yap Tai Seong). I am interested in the family tree of Yap Kwan Seng. Please do share it with me when you are done on the family tree. It’s for the benefit of my children, so that they know the lineage of their ancestors.

    I met up with Uncle Pow Thong too early this month. He did mentioned something about someone who visited him and getting information for the Yap family tree. It must be you. Glad that you manage to meet up with him.

    Should you need any help, do let me know. Will try to help if I can. I have a hand written copy of my grandfather’s (Yap Tai Seong) brother and sister family tree. Thanks

    Rachel Liao

  • avatar PK Yap

    Hi Rachel,

    We’re indeed generation cousins. Yes, I visited uncle Pow Thong in S’pore a year ago and got some valuable information from him. In Dec last year he was in Sydney and I met up with him and Angeline Hong and her husband. I met him again after his trip to New Zealand (or was it Tasmania …. have to look this up later) and another of your family line member (I have his card somewhere on my desk in Sydney but I’m in KL now).

    Please do either ask the Admin of this website for my email address or permit him to release your email address to me. We can then get in touch to exchange further info on the YKS family lines. It’ll be my pleasure to release what I have charted so far to you. I intend to get as much info I can down to the 5th generation of Wei or Wai and then I’ll get someone to help build as YKS official webpage. Hopefully this would attract the “lost” generation members to come forward with their family line info to make ultimately a complete 5-generation details of YKS descendants.

    As it stands, even on this website I found response poor even though I have authorised the Admin here to release my email address to those who wish to know more or can contribute some, no matter how little, to their family line. I’m encouraged that Peng Siew (from Tai Kong) has responded and I have asked him to come to lunch this Tuesday (19th)to be hosted by another generation cousin.

    If Piang Foh and Joyce and Gary Randall are reading this I hope they’ll get in touch with me

  • avatar Kelly Yap

    Hi, cuz. Apologies for the delay. Nice to know more and “meet” some of the family. The joy of modern technology.

  • avatar Yap Peng Khee

    Hi, I came across this discussion while looking for some ancestry stuff on YKS for my kids. Peng Khee is my name & some of you may be my cousins whom I had not seen since the 60s. BTW the lady in Pudu could be my mum as we lived in Pudu opposite a station at the Circular Road junction. Poh Hong was dad and my family cared for granddad in Pudu in 60s. I also might know Peng Kong if you had lived in Sentul before?

    My home now is Sydney. Cheers all.

  • avatar PK Yap

    Hi, Peng Khee, you are indeed a long lost brother. Yes, I was staying in Sentul Pasar until 1973. After that I moved to Bangsar and stayed there until I finally retired to Sydney end 2007.
    Let’s meet up. There is much to catch up.
    Admin, please release my email address to Peng Khee. He is my father’s eldest brother’s son.

  • avatar Yap Peng Soon


    My name is Yap Peng Soon and I am a great-grandson of Yap Kwan Seng. My grandfather was Yap Tai Hong and my father was Yap Pow Veng. My father’s brothers were Yap Pow Tatt, Yap Pow Meng and Yap Pow Cheng. There were a few sisters though I don’t recall their actual names as we only called them ‘First Auntie’,’Second Auntie’ and so on.

    I have one brother, Dr Yap Peng Lee, who resides in Scotland. I have been in KL all my life, starting in Jalan Pegawai (Lower Ampang) and then Taman Seputeh.

    In the 1970s, I also came across a person with an identical name to mine (found it in the telephone directory). He resided in Malacca but I never contacted him to find out if there was any connection.

    • avatar Yap Peng Khee

      Hi if you are Chips Yap Peng Soon, son of a gun. We rode Hustlers to school from Taman Seputeh.

      I will catch up with you at your work email tomorrow cousin.

      Cheers, Peng Khee

    • avatar Yap Peng Kong

      Hi Peng Soon,

      I’m Peng Kong. Peng Khee is my brother from my father’s eldest brother, Poh Hong (Tai Wah line). We were just catching up a wee bit over the phone on the “lost” years earlier this week (we are in Sydney)and he mentioned your name. It’s great that the cousins are catching up with each other, thanks to this blog. Btw, your brother, Peng Lee and I were in the same year in VI – he was the bright one in Science and I was the lesser endowed intellectually in Arts. I’m also touch with (Dr.) Piang Kian, your uncle, Pow Cheng’s son.

      The only other Peng Soon you mentioned that I know was another brother, son of Poh Hoi from my grandfather, Tai Wah’s 3rd wife. Unfortunately, he has passed away many years back.

      • avatar Yap Peng Soon

        Hi Peng Kong

        Good the hear from you.

        If you were with my brother, then you would know Chek Chen and Szu Hee. I wonder where they are now. I think Check Chen moved to Australia in the 1980s?

        The family tree of YKS is pretty complex with so many branches!


        • avatar Yap Peng Kong

          Hi Peng Soon,

          I don’t recall those 2 names. Perhaps they were in the science classes as was Peng Lee. I was in the arts from form 1 to form 5. After that I left to do accountancy in 1966. My most illustrious classmates were the present Sultan of Brunei and his younger brother, Mohammad but they left after form 3. Then there was Lee Meng who went on to law and retired as a senior high court judge in S’pore. Kim Chuan who went on to be school captain in form 6. Anyway we can exchange more on this on personal email. Cheers.

          to: Admin. Please release my email address to Peng Soon. Also note my new email address due to a change in ISP. Thank you.

  • avatar Brandon Kwong

    Hello all! I’m trying to trace my mother’s side of the family(yap) and think she might be a descendant of YKS.

    Her command of chinese (all dialects) is not good so I’m not sure if the spellings of her grandfather(yap pow nyen) and great-grandfather’s(yap woon tung) name is correct. But I do know that the family shophouse was on 56,Jalan Pudu until somewhere in the 60s.

  • avatar Yap Peng Hoe

    Hi Bro PK I’m PH just got to discover this site as for the Chuk po or family book I know there are 2 books around. The first book was passed to me by ah paw but fei lo bee borrowed it from me and was never return as for the 2nd book may be swee lin can help. Tq

    • avatar PK Yap


      Many years ago I asked Anne for the copy you had but unfortunately it was destroyed by bookworms and she threw away whatever was left. I was pretty perturbed by this loss. Fortunately, Peng Loong, our brother from 2nd grandmother’s line has a copy and I got a photo copy of it from him.

      Due to a change of ISP, my usual email address has also changed. I’ll ask the Admin of this blog to give you the gmail address that I use for this forum and all emails related to YKS.

  • avatar Siew Leong Hooi


    my grandma is Yap Swee Koon. When I was still living in KL, I visit Yap Tai Nyen and spouse every year. Mrs Yap Tai Nyen lives till 90 plus. I still remember visiting my great grandma in the late 70s/early 80s.

    I didn’t know my grandma is the grand daughter of Yap Kwan Seng.

  • avatar Siew Leong Hooi

    sorry I mean visited Mr and Mrs Yap Tai Nyen’s grave every year

  • avatar Peng Kong Yap

    Siew Leong Hooi,

    I’m mapping the YKS family tree. I have some names from the Tao Nyen line obtained from a few of his 3rd & 4th generation. Unfortunately, what I have is very little. Can you let me have your grandmother’s father’s name, Tai Nyen’s spouse’s name (Tai Nyen had 3 wives from my record but I have thename of only one of them)or any other names in your family line that are traced to YKS? I’ll try to see if any of the names are traceable to what I have. If not I’ll add them in.
    Do not give them to me on this blog but email me. By this reply, I’m authorising the Blog Admin to release you my email address.
    Thank you.

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