Navigation

Oil Drilling Rig, Borneo. ~ c.1890

Return to Previous Page
Description

Product Description

48. Petroleum – Boortoren.

Antique school board of an Oil Drilling Rig, Borneo. Taken c.1895 and published between 1912 and 1914 in Holland.

Oil was discovered in Indonesia in 1863 but commercial production did not begin until 1889 when 255 tons were produced from wells drilled on the island of Java. Exploration and production quickly expanded to other areas. By 1910, the archipelago was producing nearly 1.5 million tons or more than three per cent of world production. More than half of all Indonesia’s oil that year was produced in Borneo by petroleum companies like the one in the plate below. Wooden drilling rigs driven by steam used to pump oil are still in use in the 1980s.

This photograph depicting the Dutch East Indies was originally published as part of an information series for school children. It consisted of 170 educational prints and covered a diverse range of subjects, separated into two parts: numbers 1-150 depicted places and people in the Dutch East Indies and numbers 151-170 depicted places and people in the Dutch West Indies. The first 150 photographs of the collection are attributed to the photographer Jean Demmeni (1866-1939), whose pictures provided the Dutch public with some of the first photographic depictions of the colonies that they had read so much about. Demmeni was born in Padang Panjang in West Sumatra, the son of a native woman of the island of Madura and a Frenchman who had left his country to join the Dutch East Indies Army. Demmeni followed in his fatherʹs footsteps and, after technical training in Holland, entered the Third Infantry Regiment in 1887. He was seconded to the topographic unit of the armed forces and in 1894 was assigned as the official photographer to an expedition to Borneo led by Dr. A.W. Nieuwenhuis. Demmeni was then employed by the Topographical Service at Batavia from 1911 until 1920, after which he worked as a photographer at the Central Office of Dactyloscopy. In the biography of Jean Demmeni Indonesia: Image s of the Past (Singapore: 1987), Leo Haks described him as ʹone of the first photographersʹ to capture the islands of the Indonesian archipelago, and called his work a ‘vital contribution to Indonesian history and the art of photography’ which ʹprovides a comprehensive record of the Indonesian islands at the turn of the century, unmatched in its singular insightsʹ. This selection of photographs shows interesting details around the expansion of industries such as tobacco (a lucrative export) in the area, and the local processes of production. The group also records the religious influences in the region, showing Islamic and Christian presences in local communities. Islam had been established in Indonesia since the fourteenth century, and colonial European settlers had ushered in a new phase of Christian proselytising around the Pacific Ocean – one which was frequently characterised by notorious insensitivity towards the indigenous population. However, these photographs demonstrate the more tolerant educational interest being taken at the beginning of the twentieth century.

Measures; 72 x 60 cm. ( complete board )

Purchase code: PO0468

Price on request.

 

Product Enquiry

Product Enquiry

Related Products

Javanese Village. ~ c.1890

22. Javaansh Dorp Antique school board of a Javanese Village, taken c.1895 and published between 1912 and 1914 in Holland. This photograph depicting the Dutch East Indies was originally published as part of an information series...

Gardens of Bogor, Buitenzorg. ~ 1890

27. ‘s Lands Plantentuin, Buitenzorg Antique school board of ‘s Lands Plantentuin, Buitenzorg Taken c.1895 and published between 1912 and 1914 in Holland. This photograph depicting the Dutch East Indies was originally published as part of an...

129. De Sultan van Koetei en zijne Rijkssieraden

129. De Sultan van Koetei en zijne Rijkssieraden One of Borneo’s most ancient and powerful kingdoms, Kutai, once ruled a large part of what is now known as East Kalimantan. The Sultan Kutai posed for...

153. Fort-Landing op Saba

153. Fort-Landing op Saba   Antique school board of Fort-Landing op Saba Taken c.1895 and published between 1912 and 1914 in Holland. This photograph depicting the Dutch East Indies was originally published as part of an...

165. Suriname. Een Plantklaar Terrein

165. Suriname. Een Plantklaar Terrein Antique school board of, Suriname Een Plantklaar Terrein , Taken c.1895 and published between 1912 and 1914 in Holland. This photograph depicting the Dutch East Indies was originally published as part of...

148. Tabak. Gekapt Oerbosch

148. Tabak. Gekapt Oerbosch Felling timber was a lucrative trade for the Dutch but a strenuous occupation for the Chinese and Indonesian laborers in the steamy equatorial jungles of Sumatra. The trees were often sawed...

Haven de Tandjong Priok ~ c.1890

142. Haven de Tandjong Priok The administrative and mercantile heart of the Netherlands East Indies empire was its capital, Batavia. It developed around the old port of Sunda Kelapa but in 1887 the harbor was...

130. Gang van een Districtshoofd naar zijn Voorst

130. Gang van een Districtshoofd naar zijn Voorst The chief of a small district on the fabled island of Bali makes formal call on his monarch. His formal entourage includes two lance carriers, a sunshade...

146. Zoutpers

146. Zoutpers Salt, a precious commodity controlled by a Dutch government monopoly, was extracted from the sea through drying processes and still is in many parts Indonesian archipelago. Using salt presses, ( image ) the...

149. Jong Tabaksveld

149. Jong Tabaksveld Antique school board of , Jong Tabksveld, Taken c.1895 and published between 1912 and 1914 in Holland. This photograph depicting the Dutch East Indies was originally published as part of an information...
Back to top