Bridges along Singapore River
Curiocity: Places & Perspectives
Looking at Singapore today, it is easy to forget that it was once dotted with kampungs and plantations. And as we have changed, so has our cityscape. By spotlighting selected leisure and entertainment places in downtown Singapore as well as presenting fascinating histories hidden in plain sight, Curiocity gives us an opportunity to examine the evolution of our spaces and reflect on our relationship with them.
Accessible both in-person and online, Curiocity invites you to discover, learn and engage with our island’s history through the content and collections from the National Library Board and its partners. Presented in partnership with the Light to Night Festival 2022, Curiocity: Places & Perspectives is held at the National Library Building (3 January – 3 February 2022) and across several locations in the Civic District (14 January – 3 February 2022). Find out more about the showcase at https://curiocity.nlb.gov.sg/events/curiocity-showcase-2022.
This resource guide has been produced to complement the main showcase ‘The River Connects’ at the Asian Civilisations Museum, exploring the thematic focus of ‘Bridges along Singapore River’.
The Singapore River has a long, eventful history, and some have described it as our island’s lifeline for almost 200 years. The river’s calm waters made it an ideal harbour, enabling the waterway to serve as a key connector between Singapore and the rest of the world, bringing trade, people, and ideas to and from our historic port city.
Not to be overlooked, however, are the many bridges erected across the Singapore River. From wooden bridges to modern structural bridges, these constructions have served as passageways where coolies, merchants, government administrators, and many others have interacted and formed connections with each other. The bridges not only tell stories of engineering failures and triumphs, but also stories of those who relied on the river for work, passage, leisure and even shelter.
This guide provides supplementary resources for those who are keen to further explore this topic. To search for more resources, go to https://search.nlb.gov.sg/. To view other resource guides created by our librarians, please visit https://reference.nlb.gov.sg/guides/.
This resource guide was prepared in December 2021 by Andrea Kee, an Associate Librarian at the National Library, Singapore.
BiblioAsia - articles
- “Ord Bridge.” Straits Times Weekly Issue, 2 September 1886, 14. (From NewspaperSG)
Anderson Bridge : panoramic view . 23 May 2003. Photograph. Collection of National Library, Singapore.
Cavenagh Bridge, 2003: panoramic view. 6 September 2003. Photograph. Collection of National Library, Singapore.
Singapore River and Clemenceau Bridge.
20 October 1974. Photograph. Lim Hock Heng Collection, National Archives of Singapore.
Coleman Bridge: general view. 1980s. Photograph. Kouo Shang-Wei Collection, PictureSG, National Library, Singapore.
Elgin Bridge: side view. 6 September 2003. Photograph. Collection of National Library, Singapore.
Singapore River, with Ord Bridge, 1984: general view . 25 March 1984. Photograph. Lee Kip Lin Collection, PictureSG, National Library, Singapore.
Read Bridge, 2003: general view . 6 September 2003. Photograph. Collection of National Library, Singapore.
Singapore Infopedia - articles
- Cornelius-Takahama, Vernon & Damien Wang. “Singapore River (historical overview).” Singapore Infopedia. Published 2016.
- Cornelius-Takahama, Vernon & Janice Loo. “Anderson Bridge.” Singapore Infopedia. Published September 2019.
- Cornelius-Takahama, Vernon. “Cavenagh Bridge.” Singapore Infopedia. Published September 2019.
- Cornelius-Takahama, Vernon. “Coleman Bridge.” Singapore Infopedia. Published 2017.
- Cornelius-Takahama, Vernon. “Elgin Bridge.” Singapore Infopedia. Published September 2019.
- Cornelius-Takahama, Vernon. “Read Bridge.” Singapore Infopedia. Published 2017.
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