A Bookstore Frequently Visited by Bung Karno as a Youth

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NUSADAILY.COM-SURABAYA- One of the buildings that is a silent witness to the history of Ir. Soekarno is the Peneleh Bookstore, which is on the left of Gang Peneleh VII.

Located across from the house of HOS Tjokroaminoto or Pak Tjokro, in Genteng District, Surabaya, this ancient building used to be a boarding house where Bung Karno lived during school.

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Peneleh’s Bookstore is not like today’s bookstores which have modern architecture, this place has retained the feel of an ancient building since its inception.

Entering the 3 x 9 meter room, you can see the neatly arranged books on the shop windows and cupboards.

Looking at the wall right in front of the entrance, there is a photo of Bung Karno, proof that he had visited this place on 18 December 1956 when he was President of the Republic of Indonesia.

There are two booths, one as a bookstore and one as a residence.

Mrs. Liesa, the grandson of the bookstore owner, said that it was estimated that it was built in the mid-1800s with the ownership of Abdul Latif Zein, one of the figures behind the development of Muhammadiyah in Surabaya.

Therefore, it is said that in the 1920s, this bookstore was also a printing shop as well as a place to display books on Islam, Fiqh and Sharia.

“The story from my family is like that. This shop used to be, selling and providing books for public needs. But most of the books sold are about the Islamic movement, Islam and nationalism, “said Liesa.

Peneleh’s Bookstore is one of President Soekarno’s silent witnesses when he was still at HBS (Hogere Burger School) Soerabaia in 1916-1921.

The first president of the Republic of Indonesia once visited a peneleh bookstore to just read a book, which incidentally he also lived in Peneleh as a boarding house boy at Hadji Oemar Said’s (HOS) Tjokroaminoto house or known as Pak Tjokro.

Studies at a bookstore

This shop, which is only about 10 meters in front of his boarding house, is one of his favorite places to study nationalism. With many literacy books about the Islamic movement and nationalism at that time.

Some of the ornaments that have survived since the Peneleh Bookstore were in operation, as well as several neatly arranged book collections have not changed.

Peneleh’s bookstore provides not too many books. Because the space is not so wide, the books that are sold are specifically Islamic books.

The furniture and ornaments in the bookstore remain in great condition.

“Even though it is located in the middle of the city, not many people know it,” said Liesa.

Peneleh’s bookstore is not used as a cultural heritage like the house of HOS Tjokroaminoto. Because the status is owned by private individuals.

Despite historical truth, there are important traces of Peneleh’s Bookstore. As an insight into the knowledge and nationality of Indonesian youth during the movement, it cannot be ignored.

“At least, even though it is privately owned, there needs to be an official statement from the government to anticipate the loss of history,” said Liesa. (Ric / aka)

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