Mining in Malaysia
Home CornDEv WomenUK Image15 Link



Valid XHTML 1.0 Transitional


In the Main Range of mountains that divides Pahang from Selangor, the tin lodes near Sangka Dua were first discovered by ground sluicing. This work is done by women, some being employed by miners to concentrate ore in the sluices, while others work on their own in streams and rivers. The method is simple but requires some skill. A shallow wooden dish, about 30” in diameter, and 3.5” deep in the centre, is dug into the sluice or stream bed, and a quantity of sand and water is thus put into the dish. This is now subjected to a peculiar motion, more or less of the nature known as vanning, by means of which the waste material is washed over the edge and the ore remains. It is arduous work in the heat of the day, entailing as it does continual standing in water with the back bent. These women employed in the large hydraulic mines are, however, sheltered by a roof.

7,800 Dulang women were employed in 1935, mostly from the Kheh clan. Dulang women are Chinese. They have a very hard life, standing in the water all day, washing for tin ore, and it is no unusual thing to see a woman work with a baby strapped on her back. In the evening they cut firewood, cook the food, and do the housework. (Mining in Malaya, Malayan Information Agency 1936 p. 48, 70)




© Webmaster Peter Boorman & Lynne Mayers 2006
About the website