History of Railways around Kuala Lumpur
History of Railways in Selangor
Click below for transcriptons of early newspaper reports
Click here for early Selangor Railway pictures
The Selangor Government Railway opened its first line from Bukit Kuda, near Klang, to Kuala Lumpur, a distance of 19½ miles, on 15th September 1886. The intention was to complete the line to Klang but it was another four years to the day before the Connaught bridge over the Klang river was opened. The first locomotive was an ex-Indian Railways 0-4-4T which came via Johore, where it is believed to have been used on the Johore Wooden Railway. It was named LADY CLARKE and later became FMSR 2, surviving until December 1912. The next three locomotives were 4-4-0Ts from Hunslet in 1885 and they were numbered 1, 2 & 3, one of the first two being named LADY WELD (at the opening ceremony of the first line) and No. 3 LADY CLEMENTI. The same year an 0-6-0ST named LILY arrived from a contractor. In 1888 an 0-4-0ST named LEILA and another 4-4-0T from Neilson arrived. Hudswell Clarke supplied a 4-4-0T to a slightly different design in 1890, this was named LADY MAXWELL, and in 1893 an 0-4-2T named SISYPHUS came from Dick Kerr. The remaining Hunslet and the Neilson were named LADY DICKSON (at the Connaught bridge opening in 1890) and LADY MITCHELL (at Kuala Lumpur in 1894 during a State visit by the Governor). It was reported in the newspapers in 1890 that the naming of the locomotives led to the line being nicknamed "The Aristocrats Line". The 4-4-0Ts and LADY CLARKE were used for service trains and the other small tanks for shunting and ballast duties. When the first 4-6-0 tender locomotives arrived they took over the goods workings.
The line was extended from Kuala Lumpur to Batu Junction and Rawang in 1892. As it was not feasible to make an end-on connection this line would branch off from the line to Klang just to the south of the Kuala Lumpur station and goods yard. To avoid the necessity of trains having to reverse into the station a new station was planned 26 chains further south. The new station opened when the first section of the extension opened to Rawang at the end of 1892. Photograph 7 below was taken in 1893 but I have no date for photograph 8.
The next line to open was from the north end of the Kuala Lumpur (1892) station across the Klang River, along Foch Avenue and through Sultan Street station to Pudu, on 1st June 1893. At the same time work was continuing northwards from Rawang and it opened to Serendah on 10th July 1893 and finally Kuala Kubu on 6th October 1894. By the 1st March 1895 the line from Pudu had been extended to Sungei Besi and it reached Kajang on 14th August 1897. The Klang Valley line was extended from Klang to Port Swettenham on 1st January 1899 and the Selangor Government Railway system was completed when the northward line from Kuala Kubu reached Kalumpang on 1st August 1900 and finally Tanjong Malim on 1st November 1900.
With the extension of all these lines newer and larger locomotives were needed and between 1894 and 1901 three new classes appeared. The 4 D class 4-6-0 tender locomotives came from Kitson in 1894 and Dubs in 1895 and were followed by two F class 4-4-0 tender locomotives in 1897. 4 G class 4-6-0 tender locomotives came from Kitson in 1898 followed by a further 2 in 1901 and another 2 in 1902, by which time the Selangor Government Railway had been merged with the Perak Government Railway to form the Federated Malay States Railway, although it was to be 1903 before the two systems were physically connected
The exact location of Residency
station has not been determined but as stated in the FMSR 1935 book it was
within the grounds of the Residency which was about a mile north of KLO station
with grounds extending across to the River Gombak which the old line followed
closely so the station would have been close to the river in the area of the
present Bank Negara station. A 1925 FMSR Selangor route map (not to scale) shows
all the stations at that time with mileages to the nearest quarter mile. It does
not list a Residency station by name but does show the following:
Batu Junction 239¾
Maxwell Road 240½
KL Padang H 241¾
Kuala Lumpur 242¼
1908 Kuala Lumpur Map 1922 Kuala Lumpur Map 1929 Kuala Lumpur Map(new map with tunnel)
The map below shows the approximate location of the landing stage and temporary terminus at Bukit Kuda. These locations were based on information on distances given in an 1886 report which is currently in the process of transcription. An 1890 report states the new railway bridge as "about 500 yards upstream from the jetty at Bukit Kuda". The whole area which now appears to be a "junk yard" was possibly taken up by the terminus with a wooden walkway to the landing stage, while the buildings to the south could be on the site of the old warehouses.
The information in the table below was sourced from the FMSR Annual Report of 1939. The distances quoted may have been interpolated from the then current Working Timetable as they agree with my copy of the 1958 Working Timetable. The figures from Kuala Lumpur to Klang are explained below.
Opened by Selangor Government Railway Miles & chains
15th September 1886 Kuala Lumpur to Bukit Kuda 19-40*
15th September 1890 Bukit Kuda to Klang 3-00*
Kuala Lumpur to Klang 21-37
7th November 1892 Kuala Lumpur to Batu Junction 2-33
7th November 1892 Batu Junction to Rawang 17-24
1st June 1893 Kuala Lumpur to Pudu 1-76
10th July 1893 Rawang to Serendah 5-30
6th October 1894 Serendah to Kuala Kubu 13-59
1st March 1895 Pudu to Sungei Besi 6-58
14th August 1897 Sungei Besi to Kajang 8-22
1st January 1899 Klang to Port Swettenham 5-40
1st August 1900 Kuala Kubu to Kalumpang 11-23
1st November 1900 Kalumpang to Tanjong Malim 3-24
*Most reports have what appear to be discrepancies in these distances and quote 21 miles 37 chains. This was in fact the distance from the original Kuala Lumpur station to Klang station from 1890 to 1892. When the new Kuala Lumpur station opened in 1892 this distance was reduced by 26 chains, becoming 21 miles 11 chains. From surveyors reports in 1886 Bukit Kuda was a temporary terminus on the north bank of the river near where Connaught Bridge was later built, 19½ miles from Kuala Lumpur terminus. At that time there were options for alternate routes, one being to the north bank opposite Klang town which would have been 1¾ miles long and another direct to the coast. These were in addition to the route finally selected in 1889. When the bridge was built and opened in April 1890 a new line was laid from the approaches to Bukit Kuda station across the bridge through to Klang, the length of this new section of line was quoted as “adding 3 miles to the system in 1890”. This new line was only brought into use when the station at Klang was completed in August 1890, after which Bukit Kuda station and tracks were removed. The length of these tracks and sidings could account for the extra mile, or the track may have extended beyond Klang station. See map above for the locations of the jetty and station based on available reports.
Opened by Federated Malay States Railway Miles & chains
14th June 1902 Kajang to Bangi 6-40
1st February 1903 Bangi to Batang Benar 5-00
15th February 1905 Batu Junction to Batu Road 0-36
1st December 1905 Batu Road to Batu Caves 4-65
1st February 1913 Connaught Bridge Jn to Kapar 11-62
1st June 1913 Kapar to Jeram 7-63
1st September 1913 Jeram to Assam Jawa 5-47
1st September 1913 Port Swettenham Jn to Salak South Jn 5-46
15th February 1914 Assam Jawa to Kuala Selangor 4-36
1st May 1914 Ampang Junction to Ampang 3-65
1st September 1915 Kuang Junction to Batu Arang 6-75
1st February 1918 Batu Arang to Batang Berjuntai 7-01
7th September 1925 Salak South Jn to Sungei Besi (2nd track) 3-64
Major deviations due to flooding.
I now have a much fuller story on Kuala
Kubu thanks to Zacky for compiling all the information from numerous sources.
Following is a summary:
Firstly, there used to be a town called Kuala Kubu, on the east side of the Selangor River, about 3 miles north of Rasa. This is where the first Kuala Kubu Station (203½ miles) was, 3½ miles north of Rasa Station (207 miles), opened in 1894. The next station north-westwards was Kerling (197½ miles) followed by Kalumpang Station (192 miles) opened in 1900. Tin mining in the area caused silting of the Selangor river with a continuous rise in river levels over the next few years resulting in frequent washouts. By the 1920s the situation had worsened considerably and and the river broke over the retaining wall and flooded the town. The answer was a new deviation from Rasa direct to the line from Kerling at MP 200¼, 3¼ miles north-west of Kuala Kubu. A new station was built at this point and known as Kuala Kubu Road station (opened 15th September 1924) and the section from Kuala Kubu Road to Kuala Kubu became a branch line. As the floods worsened a new town developed a couple of miles further north and was known as Kuala Kubu Bahru and replaced Kuala Kubu which had become inundated. By 1934 the branch line had closed.
A similar deviation line was built in the Serendah area around the same time. These are shown on a 1924 railway map.
2. Batu Junction was not opened until 1905 so the original line from Kuala Lumpur to Rawang would have been 19-57 which agrees with the 1958 KLO to Rawang figure. It is possible that the new (1892) station opened at the same time as the extension to Rawang but I have not found confirmation of this.
3. The distance from Kuala Lumpur (1892) to Sultan Street station was 57 chains. Kuala Lumpur to Pudu 1-76, Pudu to Sultan Street 1-19 in the 1958 Working Timetable.
A search of newspapers of the day for the first half of November 1892 may well produce something, I know Singapore Library has copies of them on microfiche available for public viewing without charge (there is a small charge for photocopies), I used this to find my information on Singapore during my last visit.
|Selangor State railway locomotives|
|Dübs||742||1874||Lady Clarke||2||2||ex ISR B class 0-4-4T accident 1893, repaired & reinstated,|
|R W Hawthorn||2046||1885||Lily||3||3||To Selangor Government Railway in 1893, ex Fleming & Wilson. 0-6-0ST Scrapped 8/1924|
|Andrew Barclay||309||1888||Leila||4||4||ex-Sungei Ujong Railway 0-4-0ST, sold 1909 to GKS Railway|
|Hudswell Clarke||364||1890||Lady Maxwell||14||14||4-4-0T Scrapped ./1911|
|Dick Kerr||59||1893||Sisyphus||15||15||0-4-2T, ref Lowe p128. Scrapped ./1908|
|Hunslet||377||1885||1*||A||6||CD 16||Named on 18th September 1886. To CD December 1913|
|Hunslet||378||1885||2*||A||7||CD 10||To CD September 1915|
|Hunslet||379||1885||3 Lady Clementi||A||8||CD 18||To CD March 1915|
|Neilson||3888||1888||4 Lady Dickson||A||11||CD 24||To CD January 1920|
|Sharp Stewart||4267||1897||9||F||32||Scrapped ./1929|
|Sharp Stewart||4268||1897||10||F||33||Withdrawn/scrapped 11/1930, photographed in Singapore scrap yard c1933?|
*These two locomotives were named Lady Weld and Lady Mitchell but which was which has not yet been ascertained.
The name "Lady Dickson" was also carried by a Sungei Ujong locomotive.
|The Malayan Railway||The 1960s||Singapore Railways|
|Singapore 1975||Singapore 1976||Singapore 1977 part 1||Singapore 1977 part 2||Singapore 1977 part 3||Singapore Trams|
|Singapore 2003||Singapore 2007||Singapore 2008|
|Allan Stanistreet pictures||Johore Wooden Railway||Muar State Railway|
|Selangor State Railway||Perak State Railway||Johore State Railway|
|Malacca State Railway||Sungei Ujong Railway||Malaysia 2008|
This page created on 27th February 2009.
Updated 9th March 2022
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