Chinese American history
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Chinese and other early Asians in Oklahoma

Chinese and other early Asians in Oklahoma | Chinese American history | Scoop.it
John Jung's insight:

"Chinese men lived in Guthrie, Oklahoma Territory, soon after the Land Run of 1889. They may first have seen the territory as railroad workers, when the Southern Kansas Railway (later the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway) constructed its line from Kansas through the Unassigned Lands in 1886-87, or they may have come as cooks or laundrymen with the U.S. Army in 1889. Tom Sing Laundry, photographed in Guthrie in 1889, is the earliest identifiably Chinese business in the region. An 1889 Oklahoma City directory lists five Chinese-owned laundries and a presumed population of eighteen men."

"The Chinese population was dispersed around Oklahoma in the early statehood period. Many towns had a laundry or a restaurant operated by a Chinese person. In those years virtually all of the men were single, and in larger towns they often lived together in common quarters and worked together in a business.."

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Chinese American history
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Dogpatch Ranch: the Orgins of a Chinese American Family

This is the story of my Chinese great grandfather and grandmother and the 7 children they raised on a ranch in the late 1800's in Dogpatch, the Potrero, Sa
John Jung's insight:
This documentary by architect Glenn Lym tells the story of his Chinese great grandfather Lim Lip Hong and his great grandmother Chan Shee and the family they raised in the late 1800’s on a ranch in Dogpatch in the Potrero District of San Francisco on the then Bay shoreline. Lim Lip Hong had returned to San Francisco after working more than a decade in the Sierra's and beyond, helping build railroads that crisscrossed the American West.

 Why did they raise their family on a ranch in rural, outlying San Francisco instead of in protected Chinatown? And how could they do this during a period of intense anti-Chinese discrimination in San Francisco and throughout the West? The ranch was half a acre large and located at the front gate of the biggest Potrero factory at the time - Tubbs Cordage. The ranch was intact for over 4 decades, yet the family was never run off the property.

 Seven children and several grandchildren total were born at the ranch. This six decade tale leads to interesting suggestions about the identity of great grandfather Lim Lip Hong. Life at the ranch provided Glenn Lym a profound understanding of his own grandfather, Lim Lip Hong's second son.
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‘Yellow Peril!’ documents historical manifestations of ‘Oriental phobia’

‘Yellow Peril!’ documents historical manifestations of ‘Oriental phobia’ | Chinese American history | Scoop.it
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A Tour of Chinatown, with Philip P. Choy

In many Hollywood motion pictures, the image of Chinatown registers as a fleeting montage of gangster chasing, detective hunting, opium smoking, mahjong playing,…
John Jung's insight:
One of the pioneering historians of Chinese America, Philip Choy, who died in 2017, was filmed giving an in-depth and authentic historical tour of San Francisco Chinatown to a group of tourists.
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Taste For Chinese Tea Led To America's First Millionaires

Taste For Chinese Tea Led To America's First Millionaires | Chinese American history | Scoop.it
China and its trade practices are often blamed for U.S. economic woes. But once upon a time, it was the tea trade with China that created American magnates — with some catastrophic consequences.
John Jung's insight:
America's love of tea came at a terrible cost because it created a large trade imbalance.Then, as now, America imported more from China that it exported. Apart from ginseng and silver (which was hard to get), the only other goods the Chinese wanted were sealskins — and opium. Starting in 1804, opium became for many traders the good that, once smuggled in, could bring balance to the China trade. It was tea drinking that spurred the advent of an illegal narcotics trade. 
Later, American merchants contributed to even more tragic events. Starting from 1852, American ships transported thousands of indentured Chinese laborers in the most abysmal conditions to the sugar and tobacco plantations in Cuba and Latin America, as well as to the Chincha Islands off Peru, where the Chinese workers mined guano, or bird waste. Tragically, those beautiful clippers built for the swift transport of tea were also used to transport these laborers from China.
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The Sour Side of Chinese Restaurants

A blog with posts of odds and ends related to the history of Chinese restaurants
John Jung's insight:
Many popular and scholarly discussions of Chinese restaurants focus on the cuisine and its evolution over the past century. However, there is also a decidedly "sour side" of running family-run restaurants including the difficult work demands, the racism often encountered, and legal impediments.
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William F. Wu Comic Book Collection – Asian/Pacific American Archives Survey Project

William F. Wu Comic Book Collection – Asian/Pacific American Archives Survey Project | Chinese American history | Scoop.it
John Jung's insight:
An archive at New York University of the William F. Wu collection of comic books featuring Asian characters. A valuable resource for analysis of the stereotypical depiction of Chinese and other Asians.  
Spanning the years 1942 to 1986, the books contain an abundance of representations of Asians in popular American culture. Many stereotypical depictions of Asians and Asian Americans - such as "Chinamen" and martial arts experts - are present, as are characters with exaggeratedly "Asian" features. Many of the comics also contain advertisements for martial arts books and courses.

A Finding Guide for the collection describes the contents: http://dlib.nyu.edu/findingaids/html/fales/wu/index.html
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The Chinese in Britain: personal tales of a journey to a new land

The Chinese in Britain: personal tales of a journey to a new land | Chinese American history | Scoop.it
Today, 400,000 ethnic Chinese call Britain home. But their 325-year history of labour contributions to the UK, from being 17th-century seamen to establishing London's now-famous Soho Chinatown, have often gone undocumented and unnoticed. Some of their stories are belo
John Jung's insight:
Although this post is about the history of Chinese in Britain, it provides a valuable comparison of similarities, and differences, between the life experiences of Chinese who emigrated to the United States and to the United Kingdom.
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Chinese American Eyes

Chinese American Eyes | Chinese American history | Scoop.it
Famous, forgotten, well-known, and obscure visual artists of Chinese descent in the United States
John Jung's insight:
Alex Jay's outstanding blog of visual artists of Chinese descent in the U. S., dating back to 1861 up to 2015, so far. He includes obscure as well as prominent artists, documenting each with archival sources including newspaper and magazine articles.Alex Jay's outstanding blog of visual artists of Chinese descent in the U. S., dating back to 1861 up to 2015, so far. He includes obscure as well as prominent artists, documenting each with archival sources including newspaper and magazine articles. An invaluable resource!
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THE CHINESE EXCLUSION ACT PBS Documentary | CAAM Home

THE CHINESE EXCLUSION ACT PBS Documentary | CAAM Home | Chinese American history | Scoop.it
New documentary on Chinese Exclusion Act directed by Ric Burns and Li-Shin Yu.
John Jung's insight:
Very timely documentary on the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882, which was not repealed until 1943. Many Chinese Americans, as well as most non-Chinese, are unaware of this significant discriminatory law and the enormous harm it inflicted on generations of Chinese Americans. It holds lessons for the contemporary debate over immigration policy and racial, ethnic bans.
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No Place Project- Tim Greyhavens

No Place Project- Tim Greyhavens | Chinese American history | Scoop.it

An on-going visual/historical/cultural document, with the emphasis on the visual part.  Tim Greyhavens is not a historian or social anthropologist; he sees himself as a photographer with a story to tell, connecting images of actual places or sites of some of the worst anti-Chinese incidents and injustices in American history.

John Jung's insight:
When photographer Tim Greyhavens learned about the racism and violence against Chinese immigrants in the late 19th century, he was appalled and wanted to increase awareness of these past injustices.   He noted that for most of these historic sites there are no plaques or markers, no guidebook references – nothing at all to indicate what happened. They had simply been transformed by time and neglect,  and he decided to create a photographic record of these actual physical sites.

Greyhavens spent time reading new and old books, journals, magazines and newspapers; pouring over old records and maps; and meeting with local historians and residents in order to come up with as accurate information as possible about the specific sites where these events took place. 

Each image has come as the result of solving a puzzle, usually starting with deciphering old descriptions of locations, then tracking changes in street and place names, and finally trying to match the written information with the physical location.
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Settlement of Asians in the Deep South (1763 – 1882)

Settlement of Asians in the Deep South (1763 – 1882) | Chinese American history | Scoop.it
A guest post by commenter Jefe: Asians first arrived in post-Colombian North America aboard the Manila Galleons in the 1580s. Some worked on the Spanish Treasure Fleet from Veracruz which plied the waters of the Caribbean and Gulf of Mexico on the way to Spain. Starting in 1763, Filipinos sometimes deserted the ships in the Gulf of Mexico…
John Jung's insight:
This blogger uses the pen name Abagond to comment on a fascinating range of topics, one of which is about the history of Asians settling in the Deep South in the 19th century.  This post was followed by a "guest post" by "jefe" , a Chinese in Hong Kong, if memory serves me well, who had several ancestors who settled in Mississippi and had grocery stores.  His guest post generated a discussion thread of 84 exchanges which raised many unanswered but provocative questions about Chinese in the Deep South.
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California Chinese immigrants after the Gold Rush

California Chinese immigrants after the Gold Rush | Chinese American history | Scoop.it

What happened to Chinese immigrants after the California Gold Rush?   


A visiting Chinese missionary gives a sermon at the Methodist Episcopal Church in Snelling, circa the 1910s. Luella East Richberger Collection 

John Jung's insight:
Arriving in the early 1860s, Chinese immigrants were among the pioneer settlers in this gold country town of Snelling, CA. and a substantial number of them were miners. During the heyday of the Gold Rush, Chinese miners were driven out of the gold fields because of white miners’ hostility and discriminatory mining laws. 
 By the late 1850s and early 1860s, the Chinese returned to the mines and patiently worked and reworked the tailings of the previous miners.   
 After leaving the mining fields in the foothills, they found employment as farm laborers and became an indispensable army in the fields.  
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Perspective | The transformation of New York’s Chinatown in the 1980s

Perspective | The transformation of New York’s Chinatown in the 1980s | Chinese American history | Scoop.it
Robert Glick documented New York's Chinatown as it transformed from a primarily older, male population to a generation of young families.
John Jung's insight:
"A picture is worth a thousand words" is a saying attributed to the Chinese, and this selection of poignant candid photographs of New York Chinatown residents by Bud Glick from the 1980s tells much about their lives and experiences.
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Asians in Colorado: A History of Persecution and Perseverance in the Centennial State (Samuel and Althea Stroum Books): William Wei

Asians in Colorado: A History of Persecution and Perseverance in the Centennial State (Samuel and Althea Stroum Books) [William Wei]    A comprehensive examination to date of Asians in the Centennial State, William Wei addresses a wide range of experiences

John Jung's insight:
Historian William Wei 2017 book discusses the history of Asians in Colorado from anti-Chinese riots in late nineteenth-century Denver to the World War II incarceration of Japanese Americans at the Amache concentration camp to the more recent influx of Southeast Asian refugees and South Asian tech professionals.  Wei reconstructs what life was like for the early Chinese and Japanese pioneers, with special attention to the different challenges faced by those in urban versus rural areas that helps us better understand how Asians survived―and thrived―in an often hostile environment.
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The Last Temple (1972)

The Last Temple was made at CHINA ALLEY in Hanford, California, in 1972, by Producer Maurice Chuck and his SAN FRANCISCO JOURNAL, Reported by Kathryn Fong
John Jung's insight:
Hanford, California, is a small town not far from Fresno, of historical significance to Chinese America. Although few Chinese live there now, it has a large Chinese population of workers who helped build the Southern Pacific Railroad. This fascinating documentary from the 1970s describes CHINA ALLEY, a one street Chinatown in Hanford that is a living museum to its history. Camille Wing, a relative of legendary "Chinoise" restaurateur, Richard Wing, tells the history of his Imperial Dynasty Restaurant that attracted celebrities and world leaders for many years. The film also shows the interior of the Taoist Temple, and provides explanations of many artifacts and practices of this cornerstone of the Hanford Chinese community. Also worth viewing is a more recent video about China Alley and the Taoist temple: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VKSCVOSMQoc
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When America First Met China: A History Of U.S.-China Trade

When America First Met China: A History Of U.S.-China Trade | Chinese American history | Scoop.it
You probably don't give much thought to the phrase "Made in China" when you see it written on the bottom of your coffee mug, or on the tag
John Jung's insight:
Long before the Chinese diaspora of the mid 19th century to many countries around the world, the U. S. and the West held a less negative attitude toward China because of the desire to benefit from trade with China. Dolin's book is very readable account of these early relationships and illustrate the importance of commerce between nations in shaping the history of their relationships.
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Chop Suey Before Li Huang Chuang's 1898 Endorsement

Chop Suey Before Li Huang Chuang's 1898 Endorsement | Chinese American history | Scoop.it
Chinese American history, immigration, racism, prejudice
John Jung's insight:
A popular account of the overnight rise in interest in chop suey by non-Chinese is that newspaper coverage of the 1898 visit of Viceroy Li Huang Chuang reported that he was served the dish at a Chinese restaurant and he liked the dish. However, chop suey was available in America several years before his visit as shown in this 1895 Centralia, Wisconsin market ad for a package of vegetable chop suey for 35 cts.
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Harley Spiller Menu Collection – Asian/Pacific American Archives Survey Project

Harley Spiller Menu Collection – Asian/Pacific American Archives Survey Project | Chinese American history | Scoop.it
John Jung's insight:
The Harley Spiller Menu Collection at New York University totals 40 linear feet and consists of more than 10,000 items. Menus from Chinese restaurants comprise about three-quarters of the collection. These span in date from 1981 to 2009 and about 1000 of the menus predate 1960. Most menus are 11×17 broadsheets or the 8 1/2x 11 folded kinds. Within the collection are menus from every decade, menus from all 50 states, and 3 linear feet of international menus.

Ephemera includes flyers and pamphlets containing information about a variety of topics relating to Chinese cookery, including chopsticks, fortune cookies, dim sum, kosher Chinese food. The artifacts in the collection consists of food packaging such as cans and take-out boxes (some with Spanish labels); restaurant breakables such as ceramics mugs, ash trays, and lidded tea cups; 8-foot chopsticks; plastic take-out bags with restaurant logos; and children’s toys, specifically plastic versions of Chinese food. There is correspondence between museums and individuals regarding his collection as well as documentation of the five exhibitions that have featured items from the collection.

Postcards of Chinese restaurants and about 1000 digital photographs of Chinese food Spiller or friends have taken over the course of their travels also comprise the collection.
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Keye Luke, Actor and Artist

Keye Luke, Actor and Artist | Chinese American history | Scoop.it
Keye Luke (1904-1991), the Chinese-American actor whose Hollywood career spanned seven decades, made
John Jung's insight:
Recognition of the achievements of pioneering Chinese American actor, best remembered as No. 1 Son in the series of Charlie Chan movies of the 1930s. In his long career he also starred in Flower Drum Song in the 1960s, the David Carradine television, Kung Fu of the 1970s, and other roles until he died at age 86 in 1991. Luke was also a gifted graphic artist who created artwork for Hollywood.
In 1986, he won the first Lifetime Achievement Award bestowed by the Association of Asian/Pacific American Artists, and  he was honored with a sidewalk star in the Hollywood Hall of Fame. 
Luke was philosophical about roles that were denied to him because of the cultural stereotyping of his era, which continues to this day.

Also see Film maker Timothy Tau's wonderful award winning reenactment bio-epic of Luke's acting career.  https://vimeo.com/58036076.
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The Blue, the Gray and the Chinese

The Blue, the Gray and the Chinese | Chinese American history | Scoop.it
American Civil War Participants of Chinese Descent
John Jung's insight:
Alex Jay's blog on Chinese in the Civil War includes archival documentation about the Chinese listed in the recent publication by the National Park Service,  "Asians and Pacific Islanders and the Civil War."
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GOLD MOUNTAIN SISTERS

GOLD MOUNTAIN SISTERS | Chinese American history | Scoop.it
I grew up in New Zealand, the southernmost white settler post on the Pacific Rim – a place known by my forebears as the “New Gold Mountain” 新金山. In the 1860s, my great-great-grandfather left his home in Toi Shan 台山 county in Kwangtung (now Guangdong) Province, South China to work on the North American railroads.…
John Jung's insight:
Although the author, Grace Yee,  is a New Zealand Chinese, her account of the difficult lives of Chinese immigrant women and Chinese women left behind in China when their husbands emigrated to many countries, is valid for Chinese women related to Chinese immigrant men in many other countries.
Grace Yee’s PhD thesis analyzed settler Chinese women’s storytelling in Aotearoa New Zealand. She recently graduated from the University of Melbourne.
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Frederick Bee History Project

Frederick Bee History Project | Chinese American history | Scoop.it
Frederick Bee History Project
John Jung's insight:
Frederick Bee was an early and staunch defender of Chinese during the era leading to the Chinese Exclusion Act in 1882 who has largely been unrecognized for his contribution.  A northern California local historian, Anthony Oertels, created this web site to acknowledge his efforts.
Frederick Bee was one of the initial consular officials. Bee fought the anti-Chinese sentiment that was prevalent during that era and gathered evidence to defend the Chinese in a report,  the "Other Side of the Chinese Question". Bee was appointed as Consul by the Chinese government after he effectively represented the interests of the Chinese community in front of a Congressional committee and settled disputes in Chinatown. Bee acted in an official capacity to represent the interests of Chinese immigrants, and appeared in federal court cases; his efforts to preserve harmony were recognized by the Emperor of China.
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How Mixed Chinese-Western Couples Were Treated A Century Ago

How Mixed Chinese-Western Couples Were Treated A Century Ago | Chinese American history | Scoop.it

Emma J. Teng, a professor of Asian Civilizations at MIT, is author of the book Eurasian: Mixed Identities in Hong Kong, China and the US during the Treaty Port Era, 1842-1943, which looks at Chinese-Western mixed-race families in the United States, China, and Hong Kong from the mid-19th to mid-20th century, and how the social and legal dynamics influenced their identities.

John Jung's insight:
"Between 1850 and 1950, 15 states in the U.S. passed anti-miscegenation laws that made it illegal for Chinese and whites to intermarry. It wasn't that the absolute numbers of these intermarriages were huge, but the occurrence could arouse scandal and opposition nonetheless.

 
The Expatriation Act of 1907 decreed that any American woman who married a foreign citizen would lose her American citizenship. That was true in the case of any foreign national, but there were some extra consequences for women who married Chinese men because the loss of their citizenship meant that Chinese Exclusion laws would apply to them.

In China, intermarriage was much more acceptable at the elite level if you're taking about a Chinese male diplomat, for example, who marries a European or American woman, rather than a Chinese woman marrying a foreign man.
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Why Doesn’t Tacoma Have a Chinatown? - "The Tacoma Method" of 1885

Why Doesn’t Tacoma Have a Chinatown? - "The Tacoma Method" of 1885 | Chinese American history | Scoop.it
The Tacoma Method is a dark spot on Tacoma's history, but what exactly happened to the Chinese population in the late 1800s?
John Jung's insight:
Harassment of Tacoma's Chinese residents became constant and increasingly brutal. Posters then set a date, November 3, 1885, after the “Committee of 15” was elected to administer the forced exile. Any remaining Chinese residents would be rounded up and forced out of town. Hundreds heeded the warning and left as fast as they could.
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Why Are There So Many Chinese Restaurants in the United States

Why Are There So Many Chinese Restaurants in the United States | Chinese American history | Scoop.it

1915 immigration ruling that Chinese restaurant owners are merchants opened the door to growth of this business.

John Jung's insight:
When immigration law in 1915  reclassified Chinese restaurant owners as merchants instead of laborers who were not allowed to immigrate, it opened the door for Chinese to expand this business rapidly using a 'corporate' model in which numerous partners would invest thus allowing them entry status to the U. S. as merchants.  MIT Prof. Heather Lee's meticulous research provides valuable insights.
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