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Jakarta Post

Public gallery to honor Tjong Yong Hian, Medan philanthropist who shaped the city

  • Apriadi Gunawan

    The Jakarta Post

Medan   /   Mon, August 26, 2019   /  05:31 pm
The Jakarta Post Image
Linda Setiawan (right) and her daughter-in-law Fenny Lim are pictured at the graveyard of philanthropist Tjong Yong Hian, located on Jl. Kejaksaan in Medan, North Sumatra, on Aug. 20.(JP/Apriadi Gunawan)

It has been six years since the Medan administration in North Sumatra officially renamed what was previously known as Jl. Bogor after its first Chinese community leader, Tjong Yong Hian (1850-1911).  Yong Hian, who was granted the title of majoor (major) by Dutch colonial rule in the early 1900s, the highest rank for an ethnic community leader, came to be recognized as a notable figure in the city’s history for his contributions in the fields of education, health and culture.  However, his popularity remains eclipsed by his younger brother Tjong A. Fie – an influential entrepreneur and philanthropist in his own right who greatly contributed to the city’s development from the tail-end of the 19th century to the beginning of the 20th century.  Linda Setiawan, a 75-year-old member of Yong Hian’s extended family, said that despite his contribut...