A Step Back To Malabar

Longing for a quiet moment where I could think of nothing  and where time stand still..
So I decided to get myself a time in Malabar, West Java; and here's a little story of what I've seen there
The history of Malabar dates back to the 1890 when the culture of Dutch began to flow into the highland of Pangalengan.

Malabar tea estate was established in 1896 and Karel Albert Rudolf Bosscha was the plantation’s first manager. Later on, he was the General Manager to all tea estate in the Pangalengan region.

During his 32 years as manager of the tea estate he had accomplished his job enormously. He erected two tea factories in Malabar, one was near his residence also his office, called Malabar tea factory and the other was erected later (1905), called Tanara (now Malabar tea factory). The first Malabar tea factory is now known as the “Sporthall Gelora Dinamika”.Both were built in the center of his tea plantation as to enable collected tea leaves reached the factory within fresh condition.

The name Malabar is believed to come from the Arab language, meaning “Mal-“ for money, and “Abar” for a well or source. In fact, Malabar has been making money for PT Perkebunan XII by yielding its best production, supported by its low cost of production.
Here's where Bosscha lived till the end of his day

Presumably, Bosscha had chosen the right place to live. He loves his life in Malabar. He became a part of it. He didn’t even bother to get married. He died on the 26th November 1928 and was buried among his tea bushes in Malabar tea estate as he had requested. His simple tomb is still there, unspoiled.

The shady tomb

Karel Albert Rudolf Bosscha was the son of renown Dutch physicist Johannes Bosscha and Paulina Emilia Kerkhoven. After gaining some formal education in engineering at Polytechnical School of Delft, in 1887 came out to Netherlands Indies and stayed with his uncle while working at Sinagar Estate near Cibadak (West Java) that his uncle owned. Work at his uncle's company gave him little satisfaction, thus after 6 months he went to Sambas (Borneo) to join his older brother John Bosscha, a geologist. During this time he worked on gold exploration and mining with his brother until his return to Sinager 1892 now as its administrator. He stayed at Sinagar Estate till 1895 and in 1896 he undertook the management of Malabar Estate near Pangalengan (Bandung) until his death in 1928. Till this day the Malabar Estate plantation is still operational under state own company (PT Perkebunan Nusantara) management.

He was also a philanthropist and continued his family's traditional interest in science. He most notably participated in the development of the Bosscha Observatory (Bosscha Sterrenwacht) at Lembang near Bandung in 1923. His contribution consists of land that is now used as its location and as the main benefactor till the project completed in 5 years time (1928). He also sponsored the purchase of the telescope itself from Carl Zeiss Jena.

Bosscha also helped the development of the Cancer Center in Bandung (het Nederlandsch-Indisch Kanker Instituut) and the Technische Hoogeschool te Bandung in 1920 now known as Bandung Institute of Technology. He also created an elementary school for his workers children in 1901 known as Vervoloog Malabar, now known as Malabar Elementary School.

For his work and contribution to the society, he was awarded honorary citizenship of Bandung. An asteroid (11431 Karelbosscha) was also named after him in 1971.

 Source: Wikipedia and http://info.bdg.tripod.com/malabar/text_01e.htm

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