Surrender of the British forces in Singapore to the Japanese Army.
(Unknown author, Image in public domain)

The Battle of Singapore took place between January 31 and February 15, 1942 when Japanese troops advanced on the island - a base that the British considered impregnable - and conquered it.

Fearing an attack the British had sent reinforcements consisting of Canadian battalions, and naval units, namely the battleships Prince of Wales and Repulse in addition to an escort of destroyers, but the battleships were sunk by Japanese planes and other reinforcements never arrived.

The defense included troops from f+different points in the Commonwealth - England, Scotland, India, Malaysia, etc. - and also volunteers gathered in the Straits Settlements Volunteer Force (SSVF) where some Portuguese or Portuguese descendants served.

This volunteer force was originally created in 1888 as an artillery unit. Over time it undergone several modifications and was used in local conflicts.

Initially made up of a few hundred mostly foreign elements - Eurasians, Europeans, Chinese, Malaysians and Indians-, it was increased substantially from the 1930s onwards to include four battalions of infantry for a total of about 3000 men, who joined in the defense of the island side-by-side to the regular army.

In 1942, during the Japanese invasion, almost all SSVF volunteers were killed or captured when Allied positions were completely wiped out.

Among them were several Portuguese and Portuguese descendants ...




Know their stories: 

Souza, Anthony Gerard de

    Private Straits Settlements Volunteer Force Unit – SSVF Birth place – Singapore / Sungapura Birth date – 26/ 10/ 1922 Death date –  Father – Henry de Souza Mother – Leanie de Souza Anthony Gerard de Souza was a volunteer … Read More

Rodrigues, A. J.

    Private Straits Settlements Volunteer Force Unit – SSVF Birth place – Singapore  Birth date  –  Death date – 10/ 08/ 1944 Father –  Mother –  A. J. Rodrigues was a volunteer in the Straits Settlements Volunteer Force in … Read More

Rodrigues, Michael

    Private Straits Settlements Volunteer Force Unit – SSVF Birth place – Singapore  Birth date – 19/ 05/ 1927 Death date – Father – William Rodrigues Mother – Michael Rodrigues was a volunteer in the “Straits Settlements Volunteer Force” … Read More

Monteiro, Nelson

Corporal Straits Settlements Volunteer Force Unit – SSVF Birth place – Singapore/ Singapura  Birth date – 23/ 10/ 1910 Death date –  Father –  Mother – Nelson Monteiro was a corporal in the Straits Settlements Volunteer Force in Singapore. He … Read More

Silva, Oscar George da

    Corporal Straits Settlements Volunteer Force Unit – SSVF Birth place – Singapore/ Singapura Birth date –  Death date – 24/ 02/ 1942 Father – Cláudio António Mother – Mary Jane da Silva Oscar George da Silva was a … Read More

Cordeiro, Louie Simon

    Private Straits Settlements Volunteer Force Unit – SSVF Birth place – Singapore  Birth date – 14/ 01/ 1912 Death date – 02/ 09/1943 Father – Joseph Cordeiro Mother – Annie Cordeiro Louie Simon Cordeiro was a soldier in … Read More

Machado, Richard

    Corporal Straits Settlements Volunteer Force Unit – SSVF Birth place – Singapore Birth date – 10/ 03/ 1917 Death date – Father – William Machado Mother – Justine Machado Richard Machado was a corporal in the “Straits Settlements … Read More

Pereira, J. R. A.

    Sargeant Straits Settlements Volunteer Force Unit – SSVF Birth place – Singapore Birth date – Death date – 17/02/ 1942 Father – Mother – J. R. A. Pereira was a sergeant in the Straits Settlements Volunteer Force in … Read More

Silva, Eduardo da

    Sergeant Straits Settlements Volunteer Force Unit – SSVF Birth place – Singapore Birth date – 30/ 01/ 1903 Death date – Father – Cláudio da Silva Mother – Mary da Silva Eduardo da Silva was a Sergeant in … Read More

Pestana, António Cristovão

    Private Straits Settlements Volunteer Force Birth place – Singapore  Birth date –  Death date – 05/08/1943 Father –  Mother – E. Pestana António Cristóvão Pestana was a soldier in the “Straits Settlements Volunteer Force” in Singapore. He was … Read More