Ah Pow (1878-1907)

In January 1907, the unusual proceedings at the funeral of one of the workhouse inmates received some publicity:

A CHINAMAN'S FUNERAL Some unusual incidents occurred at Cardiff yesterday, on the occasion of the burial of Ah Pow, a Chinese seaman, who died from pneumonia soon after his admission to the Cardiff Workhouse on December 27. A dozen or more Orientals attended to witness the interment, which took place in the Nonconformist portion of the cemetery. It was not until the coffin had been deposited near the grave that one of the Chinese inquired about a minister. No arrangements had been made for the attendance of a minister, but eventually an undertaker's assistant was sent to the Rev. Caradoc Griffiths, who consented to come and conducted the ordinary burial service: It was not until this was over that the friends of the deceased showed any particular interest in the proceedings. A couple of the Chinese then brought to the graveside a large hamper, basins of rice, a bottle of whisky, a plate of sweets, a chicken, a piece of bacon, bundles of crinkled paper (on which were printed Chinese characters), and candles were produced. The whisky was poured on the coffin and the rice was thrown into the grave. While some were doing this others, behind the shelter of umbrellas, lighted the papers and candles, and a Chinaman gave utterance to what a correspondent calls "some weird incantation". All the remaining eatables were then thrown into the grave, in order to provide Ah Pow with sustenance on his journey to the next world, the fire being to light him on his way.

Ah Pow was buried in plot Y 1114 on 1st January 1907

Source The Workhouse