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The fascinating private museum of Bukit Mertajam

  • This antique motorcycle is still in proper operation today. Photo courtesy: Sin Chew Daily
  • Exhibits in the museum. Photo courtesy: Sin Chew Daily
  • The classical vinyl record player of yesteryear. Photo courtesy: Sin Chew Daily
  • Antique telephones, typewriter and other household items are among Yang's vast collection on display at the museum. Photo courtesy: Sin Chew Daily
  • The wooden cabinet can keep countless of antique items. Photo courtesy: Sin Chew Daily
  • A 1850 clothes iron. Photo courtesy: Sin Chew Daily
  • Yang spent four whole years to create his private museum. Photo courtesy: Sin Chew Daily
  • These antique cars are among the prized collection at BM Museum. Photo courtesy: Sin Chew Daily

BUKIT MERTAJAM, Penang -- Yang Qingshan spent four whole years to create a museum of his own antique collection, the BM Museum, which has since become a new attraction in town.

The 52-year-old property developer has in his collection household antiques aged 50 to 100 years. Particularly fond of wood artworks, Yang turned a 5,000 square foot mangosteen estate into a museum of wood arts and antiquities.

Located along Jalan Tanah Liat, Bukit Mertajam, the attap-house museum showcases hundreds of household antiques that are poised to fascinate die-hard antique lovers. In recent years, the museum has evolved into a favourite shooting location for local movies as well as wedding albums.

Yang told Sin Chew Daily every piece of wood used to build the museum had been sourced by him and his kampung friends in the jungles over the past four years, and all the wood panels used to make the ladders had been taken from mangosteen trees.

He said if the antiques were just piled up without proper arrangement, they would just look like dumped garbage. However, if the antiques are arranged nicely in brightly lit and well ventilated places, they will appear more appealing to the visitors.

As such, Yang has hired workers to keep the museum clean and tidy so that visitors can enjoy browsing his collection in a cosy environment.

In this museum are antiques and artworks Yang brought back from some regional countries such as Thailand, Indonesia and the Philippines. The museum is open for free public viewing daily.

Among the exhibits in the museum are: a 1850 clothes iron, 1880 horse cart lamp and horse cart bell, a 1990 ship clock, a 1910 hand sewing machine, a 1925 wood planer, antique telephones, cameras, dining utensils, a vinyl record player and the 1950s records, commercial balance, some antique cars, antique motorcycle, trishaw, samurai sword, stone pestle, abacus, teapot, old posters as well as some historical photographs, along with a wide array of wood artworks.

Yang said these antiques made in the United States, Britain, China and Indonesia, had been sourced by him here and abroad, adding that he had travelled all around Thailand, Indonesia, the Philippines, Vietnam and Cambodia to acquire these items.

Yang hopes the museum could get assistance from the government so that it could have the necessary funds to bring in more antiques for public viewing.

 

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