Glodok Metamorphosis: Made by the Dutch to Become a Dragon Head in Jakarta


The Chinese New Year atmosphere in can be felt in Glodok. Chinatown which is the center of the economy has an interesting history and culture.

Glodok is a village located in Taman Sari, West Jakarta. This area has long been known as a settlement of people of Chinese descent.

Travelers who stop by there will easily find shops owned by Chinese traders selling various goods. There is also the Petak Sembilan area which is home to various temples. Until the contemporary culinary area Petak Six which is loved by young people.

Glodok is also often referred to as Jakarta’s dragon head. This is inseparable from the Taoist beliefs of the Chinese people who believe that the Glodok region brings benefits.

According to them, Glodok fulfills the element as a place that has elements of mountains in the back and water in front. Its position near the river mouth makes Glodok the right place to do business.

The West City Government plans to organize the Glodok area. Glodok will become a historical tourist location for Chinatown to attract tourists. (Grandyos Zafna/detikcom)

However, judging from the history of its development, the area which is now known as Glodok was apparently deliberately designed by the Dutch as a center for Chinese settlements.

The story begins in 1619 when the Dutch East India Company (VOC) succeeded in controlling Batavia. The Governor General of the VOC at that time, Jan Pieterszoon Coen, wanted to build Batavia using Chinese personnel because it was considered skilled and would facilitate the VOC’s trade relations with China.

At first he tried to persuade the Chinese who lived in Banten to move to Batavia. Unfortunately, this attempt was thwarted by Prince Banten.

“Even though it didn’t work, Coen didn’t lose his mind. He then encouraged the immigration of Chinese people to Batavia as much as possible. Including kidnappings,” said Nadia Purwesti from the Architectural Documentation Center on a virtual tour of Tempo Doeloe’s Plesiran “The establishment of Kampong Tjina Glodok, the celebration of Friends of the Museum , on Sunday (30/1/2022).

Get ready!  Glodok will be transformed into Chinatown historical tourismGet ready! Glodok will be transformed into Chinatown historical tourism Photo: Detikcom

Since then, the Chinese became the first settlers in the City of Batavia. At that time, they were not immediately placed in the area we know as Glodok, but to the east of the Batavia castle which is now known as Ancol. They then moved to the south of the castle of Batavia.

Then, a big event occurred in 1740. When they began to feel competitive with British companies and Chinese companies whose business was booming, the VOC began to emphasize the issue of residence permits for Chinese people.

“On July 25, 1740, the VOC further emphasized the rules by issuing a resolution stating that the VOC rulers had the right and imprisoned all Chinese citizens who did not have a residence permit in the Batavia area. The regulations that were considered unfair triggered a rebellion from the Chinese people,” said Nadia.

Get ready!  Glodok will be transformed into Chinatown historical tourismGet ready! Glodok will be transformed into Chinatown historical tourism (detikcom)

On October 7, 1740, about 500 Chinese attempted to attack the VOC. Unfortunately, they failed to penetrate the fort in Batavia. The VOC troops then searched for the rebels by burning down settlements and massacring the Chinese people.

“On October 10, 1740, Governor General Adriaan Valckenier ordered all Chinese citizens to be gathered at the Batavia City Hall to serve their sentences by hanging. The number was more than 10,000 people. After that, the Chinese population of Batavia City was exhausted,” he said.

After the incident, the Chinese people were then prohibited from living in the city of Batavia. They were given their own territory to live in.

“May 4, 1742, the Chinese are no longer allowed to live there but are given a special area to live in. Since now, the Chinatown area outside the walls of Batavia City, namely in Glodok, Toko Tiga, Pintu Kecil, and Pancoran is growing,” he said.

This Chinatown area then continues to grow. An area known as Kampung Kelenteng then changed its name in 1979 to Kelurahan Glodok. The area then became the Glodok we see today.

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[Gambas:Video 20detik]