Chimney Museum

Website : http://www.jmm.gov.my/en/museum/chimney-museum
Entry Fee : Free
Google Maps Link : https://goo.gl/maps/ihg4AatJQPm

Chimney Museum keeps the history of Labuan's coal mining past. It is located at the northern tip of the island. Bus No. 6 from the town centre will take you this museum and it only cost RM2.80 at the time of my visit. I was thirsty and was looking for water when I reached the museum but unfortunately there was no vending machine there, unlike other museums that I have visited. However, you can buy drinks from the Bird Park about 200 meters away, after paying the park's entrance fee of course!


Front view of the museum


Chimney next to the museum

Exhibitions were kept in two floors however no visitor guide was provided, although a structural plan was displayed. At the ground floor, there were historical write-ups about the coal mining activities in Labuan.  Tanjung Kubong, the place where this museum is located, was once abundant with coal. Coal was used to generate power for the shipping industry. That was the reason the British decided to take hold of this island in around 1849. The workers were mostly Chinese immigrants, plus locals. The mining activities were stopped around 1912, because of constant infightings amongst workers and accidents caused by flood, as well as the emergence of oil. 

The last section of the ground floor was a diorama of workers in a coal mine. 


Wheel from the tramway wagon that was used to carry coal at the mine. The other one is a chain left by a ship docked at the Raffles Anchorage, the small port built at Tanjung Kubong beach.

I then went up to the first floor.  There the bricks used to build the original chimney was displayed. There were also a few theories about the purpose of the chimney. The most accepted theory is that it served as the settlement's icon for coal mining. Also displayed were the other archaeological findings such as plates, bowls and tools believed to be left behind by the mine workers. 

After finishing with the main building, I went to have a look at the Chimney structure that had been refurbished. I found that there was nothing extraordinary. Behind the museum complex there is a walking trail which leads to Tanjung Kubong beach. I did not follow this trail but remnants of some old structures can be spotted in this trail, like the Japanese ammunition store, plus a nice hill view of South China Sea.





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