Palmer Road

Palmer Road begins at the junction of Enggor Street and Anson Road and ends near Keppel Road. It is named after John Palmer who owned the area from the early 1820s to 1828. Mount Palmer was located here before it was levelled. 

John Palmer was a merchant from Calcutta, India, and had earned the distinction of being known as the "father of Indian Mercantile community". He purchased the land covering what is now Palmer Road and some of the surrounding area soon after Singapore was founded. The road was first known as Palmer's Battery Road before it was officially named Palmer Road in 1905. John Palmer went bankrupt in 1827 and sold off his land. One part of his area that he sold to an unnamed Parsi was converted it into a Parsi burial ground and thereafter managed by the Parsi Lodge Charity. This burial ground was removed to Choa Chu Kang to make way for new development.

Key features
The Fook Tet Soo Khek Temple is dedicated to the deity Tua Pek Kong. An incense house or shrine appears to have existed at the site as early as 1819. The predominantly red and white shrine with a tiled roof is believed to have been constructed in 1830. The Keramat Habib Noh houses the tomb of Habib Noh bin Mohamed al-Habshi, a mystic who died in 1866. The keramat (grave of a Muslim holy man) was built in 1890 by Syed Mohammed bin Ahmed Alsagoff and is still maintained by his descendants. The Masjid Haji Mohamed Salleh, renovated in the mid-1980s, is located within its vicinity. Government offices, located on this road, housed the Immigration Department from 1953 to 1961 before it moved to Empress Place. The YMCA Metropolitan building, built in 1954, was sold in the late 1990s and renamed Palmer House.

Naidu Ratnala Thulaja

Dunlop, P. K. G. (2000). Street names of Singapore (p. 235). Singapore: Who's Who Publications.
(Call no.: RSING 959.57 DUN

Edwards, N., & Keys, P. (1988). Singapore: A guide to buildings, streets, places (p. 469). Singapore: Times Books International.
(Call no.: RSING 959.57 EDW)

Samuel, D. S. (1991). Singapore's heritage: Through places of historical interest (p. 206). Singapore: Elixir Consultancy Service.
(Call no.: RSING 959.57 SAM)

Savage, V. R., & Yeoh, B. S. A. (2003). Toponymics: A study of Singapore street names (p. 291). Singapore: Eastern Universities Press.
(Call no.: RSING 915.9570014 SAV)

Lee, P. (1997, October 6). YMCA at Palmer Road to close following fee hike. The Straits Times, Home, p. 35.

Mosque to get facelift. (1985, August 31). The Straits Times, Islamism, p. 13.

Singapore Immigration and Registry. (n.d). Our pre-independence days. Retrieved April 2, 2003, from

Further reading

Wan, M. H. (2009). Heritage places of Singapore (pp. 160-163). Singapore: Marshall Cavendish Editions.
(Call no.: RSING 959.57 WAN)

The information in this article is valid as at 2003 and correct as far as we are able to ascertain from our sources. It is not intended to be an exhaustive or complete history of the subject. Please contact the Library for further reading materials on the topic.

Street names--Singapore
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