Chinese Residence, Penang.
To encourage the wood-cutters he fired a bag of dollars into the jungle, thereby rousing the enthusiasm of such visitors as came for gain, and he built a stockade, which is now Fort Cornwallis. On August 12 the Colony was christened Prince of Wales Island, that day being the Prince Regenta s birthday, ;.nd such is still its official designation. By 1795 the population was put at 20,000, and Penang had already attracted many settlers from India, who formed the majority of the population, there being then only 3,cco Chinese. The East India Company exhibited in relation to Penang the same reluctance to adopt further responsibilities as afterwards hampered Raffles at Singapore. Ihey would set up no Court, and the place was administered, even up to the beginning of the 19th century, by a sort of Court Martial of military officers and local notables, who sent murderers for lifelong imprisonment to Bengal. In 1801 Penang was obliged to set up customs to raise a revenue, and until 1826 the trade suffered obstruction from this. By 1789 the imports had reached a value of $600,000 (A 150,000). To-day they are worth
$202,949,767 (A 23,677,473). In 1791 the Malays of Kedah made their first and last attack with a force said to consist of 8,oco men. They were routed by 400 men led by Captain Light. In 1794 Captain Light, fifty years of age, died in Penang, but by that time the Settlement was flourishing, and in especial he had foreseen the rise of the great nutmeg industry which flourished later in Penang. Though this cultivation has fallen off, the remains of it are still to be seen in the nutmeg trees on the hills of the island. In 1805 the Indian Government, somewhat tardily, acknowledged that the position of the island, its climate, its fertility and its harbour had long pointed it out as an acquisition of very great importance, in a commercial and political view, for an emporium of commerce in the Eastern seas. The body of Captain Light lies in the old cemetery, and in Saint Georgea s Church is an inscription to his memory.
The subsequent history of Penang is one of steady development, until to-day the tonnage entered and cleared at the port is 4,009,126; its imports and exports are valued at $361,986,328 (A 42,231,738) ; its population consists of Chinese, Indians, Malays, Europeans, and other races. From the island a railway, whose first link with the mainland is a steam ferry connecting with the trains, runs south to Singapore, and north to Bangkok, in Siam.
The City of Georgetown is situated on an eastern headland of the island of Penang, whose extreme apex is Swettenham Pier. The seafront on the south is known as Weld Quay, and off this lies an immense collection of native craft and steamers. The business quarter of Penang lies landward of the railway jetty, and is best described by taking that jetty as a starting point. Opposite the railway jetty, across the tram lines, is an imposing white building, which is the railway station. It has a high clock tower, by far the most conspicuous mark in Penang whether from the sea or from the land.