Extract from Charles Burton Buckley's An Anecdotal History of Old Times in Singapore 1819-1867, pp. 542-543.
[In 1851] the interior of the island had been in a most disturbed state, owing to an active persecution having broken out against the Chinese converts to the Roman Catholic Church, who were scattered over the island as planters, and whose numbers were steadily increasing. A very slight pretence was laid hold of for putting in practice a general sacking and pillaging of the plantations belonging to the Christian Chinese and for carrying off individuals and holding them to ransom in large sums. These proceedings were generally ascribed to the influence, more or less openly exerted, of the Tan Tae Hoe, and probably of the other Secret Societies, from whose ranks the Christian converts were withdrawn, and whose power and influence were of course diminished in proportion to the success of the Roman Catholic Missionaries. Besides withdrawing members from these Secret Societies, the conversion of the Chinese in the interior had the effect of placing everywhere throughout the island, men who were subject to influences adverse to the interests of the Societies, who were thus deprived of that complete immunity from surveillance which constituted one of the sources of their power. With these Chinese converts disseminated throughout the island, the Hoes could no longer hold their meetings, or execute sentence on refractory or defaulting members with the same security which they had enjoyed when there was no check upon their proceedings. This led to a general attack upon the Christian Chinese throughout the island.