Consulting material: To consult archives and manuscripts, a full and unrestricted Bodleian reader's card (Group A) is required. You should apply for your card at the Admissions Office.
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Ernest Woodford Birch (1857-1929), KCMG (1911), was the eldest son of James Wheeler Woodford Birch, the first British Resident of Perak, Malaya.
Ernest Birch entered the Colonial Office as a clerk in 1876. In 1878 he joined the Civil Service in the Straits Settlements (which comprised the four trade centres of Penang, Singapore, Malacca, and Labuan). Birch worked in the Secretariat under Sir Cecil Clementi Smith and in various capacities in Singapore and Malacca until 1892, at which point he was appointed as secretary to the Governor of Perak (1892-1897).
In ca.1897, Birch was appointed as British Resident of Selangor; he subsequently held the posts of British Resident of the Negri Sembilan; Governor of Labuan and North Borneo; and (7th) British Resident of Perak, a post he held from 1904 until his retirement in 1910. After retiring, Birch served for many years on the Council of the Overseas League (becoming chairman in 1921) and was made Mayor of Bexhill in 1927.
Addresses and testimonials of appreciation addressed to Ernest Birch (and one to his wife) by groups in Malaya, some in local languages, 1892-1907. Also, photographs of J.W.W. Birch, Sir William Jervois, Sir Frank Swettenham and other Malayan groups and scenes, ca.1870-1920.
Bodleian reader's ticket required.Reproduction Restrictions
No reproduction or publication of personal papers without permission. Contact the library in the first instance.
The library holds a card index of all manuscript collections in its reading room and a handlist is also available for this collection.
Birch | Ernest Woodford | 1857-1929 | Sir | Knight Colonial Governor
Birch | James Wheeler Woodford | 1826-1875 | Resident in Perak
Jervois | William Francis Drummond | 1821-1897 | Sir | Knight Lieutenant General Colonial Governor
Swettenham | Frank Athelstane | 1850-1946 | Sir | Knight Colonial Administrator
Speeches, addresses, etc.
Malaya | Officials and employees
Great Britain | Colonies | Malaya