Rider’s Empire; Miller’s Fortune
He empty-handedly made his fortune by winning large sums at the horse races.
He constructed a fantasy home for his daughter Nancy.
She had a dream in which she saw a castle like those in the Hans Andersen fairy tales.
On awakening, Nancy drew a sketch.
The father was so fond of his youngest daughter that he immediately commissioned an architect to build her dream house.
Other documentations depicted that the Mollers were originally Swedish with British citizenship.
1913, Eric Moller took over the family business and prospered.
He had a steamboat that ran between Shanghai and Zhenjiang in Jiangsu Province.
The family core business was shipping and shipbuilding.
In the mid-1920s, he decided to embark on the construction of a house for his big family – six children and a menagerie of dogs and cats.
They established the “LIGHT” stable under the name “Mr Cire”.
1916, Mr Cire was partnered with Mr Henry Morriss.
1918, he had half of “Mr Adameric” Stable ownership.
1930s, especially the early period had been perilous years though.
1932 to late 1936, the financial crisis struck a year later and lasted longer.
Eric Moller left for America in business trips.
A loan was raised somewhere, and Moller was shortly buying ships at half their actual value.
1937 July, it was in this somewhat buoyant mood.
He was apparently destined for Hongkong.
Albeit an animal ‘of quite unpretentious condition and shape’, Moller had his eye on him.
1937-08-13, the Battle of Shanghai commenced.
The worst casualty, however, was the International Settlement, which was bombed by Chinese planes trying to hit Japanese cruisers on the river.
Their explosion fell short, killing and wounding thousands of civilians.
1938-02-20, the first day of Hong Kong Annual race meeting, he landed the Maiden Stakes.
It was the most dramatic race ever run on the China coast.
He got the Hong Kong Triple Crown.
By that time, Eric Moller no longer rode in races as with three stalwart sons he did not have to.
He sometimes threatened to throwing his stable and his sons into dismay.
1940, they took the Derby again, this time with SATINLIGHT.
1941, they had a string of 12 ponies.
However in confusing coincidence “Mr Sleg” introduced himself to the racing public with ponies named PORT LIGHT, STARBOARD LIGHT and HEADLIGHT, etc.
His beloved horse BLONIC HILL, an Arab stud stallion, brought him money and honor in the racing field.
Now only the bronze statue of the horse remained there.
During the Pacific War, the house was occupied by the Japanese.
Later, it housed the Kuomintang espionage agency.
His elder sons Eric Jr and Ralph took over their father’s business afterward.
The interest in horses continued in the next generation.
They owned a successful stud farm, White Lodge Stud, in Newmarket, UK.
In 1989, the Villa was listed as one of Shanghai‘s protected historical buildings.
Moller is an occupational name for a miller who keeps a flour mill or attends a gristmill.
Moller, written as Moeller in Dutch, North German, Sweden ,( Möller), and Danish (Møller).
The surname established from the Netherlands to Poland where it is of either German or Danish origin, and in Norway, it is of Danish origin.
Acknowledgment to HKJC Racing Registry for offering relevant records.