A permanent reminder to Singaporeans of the days when


 was administered by the East India Company through the Governor-General in India.

Marquis Dalhousie was Governor-General of India from 1848 to 1856 and Governor of the Straits Settlement (


 was part of it) was directly answerable to him.

In India, Dalhousie was recognized as an active modernist but incurred the displeasure of the Indians with his infamous “doctrin of lapse” by which he annexed Indian princely States where the rulers had no direct heirs to succeed them.

Marquis Dalhousie was the second Governor-General of India to visit


;  the first was Lord William Bentick in March 1829.

Marquis Dalhousie and Marchioness Dalhousie arrived in the settlement of


 on 17 February 1850 in the man of war “Feroze” which was anchored in the roads. He was received by the Governor, the Temenggong, European residents and the heads of various Chinese clans.

During their three-day stay, the Governor-General and his wife visited the oldest Chinese temple the Thian Hock Keng in Telok Ayer Street.  At the farewell ceremony the Chinese community organized a procession of Chinese children up Government Hill (now Fort Canning)  as a display of their loyalty to the British. Before his departure Marquis Dalhousie donated a sum of 1,000 rupees to the Tan Tock Seng Hospital. 

As a permanent memorial to that visit the residents of


 decided to erect an obelisk by means of a $5 subscription fund. The following persons in May 1850 served on the Committee of the Dalhousie Testimonial :

G.G. Nicol
M.F. Davidson
J. Guthrie
Tan Kim Seng
Joaquim D’Almedia
H.C. Caldwell
Ang Choon Seng
and Seah Eu Chin
Written by:
Mr Dhoraisingam S. Samuel