This British colonial government quarters, called Newlands, was once occupied by famous American writer, Agnes Newton Keith, who penned Land Below The Wind in 1939. The house became home to Agnes and her family, Henry (also referred to as Harry) George Keith, who was the Conservator of Forests and their son, George.
Today the house has turned into a heritage house, providing interesting insights to life during British North Borneo. It is furnished with a reproduction of colonial furniture and antiques. A gallery on the first floor tells the story of this remarkable woman, her books and her family.
The museum of Agnes Keith House is situated on top of Jalan Istana hill, about 10km from Sandakan Airport. Visitors could also join the Sandakan Heritage Trail walk which include a visit to Agnes Keith’s House. The English Tea House is located just adjacent to this building as well.
"The new house is beautiful. Round trippers on world boats would come up to see it, carrying their cameras and calling, Why look!" (Agnes Keith, White Man Returns, 1951, p.87)