By David H.T. Wong
David H.T. Wong is an architect and historian.
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Additional info for Escape to Gold Mountain: A Graphic History of the Chinese in North America
Dr Connie C. So, Senior Lecturer, American Ethnic experiences, college of Washington, Seattle, Washington regardless of profound contributions to the Americas for greater than a hundred and fifty years, the tale of the chinese language within the usa and Canada continues to be commonly unacknowledged. David H. T. Wong’s photograph novel, Escape to Gold Mountain, stunningly records the old prejudice, discrimination, and hostilities confronted by way of chinese language american citizens and chinese language Canadians. whereas targeting the Wong family’s epic trip from Southern China to North the US, the writer skillfully recounts a bigger tale concerning the chinese language humans within the Americas. My kinfolk emigrated from Hong Kong to the USA in 1969, while i used to be 4 years outdated. We left to rejoin my mother’s kinfolk, already within the usa. because the mid-nineteenth century—after the Opium Wars, drought, and famine in Toisan/Taishan, and the profession of the rustic via foreigners—my maternal ancestors had sought possibilities in “Gold Mountain,” the identify given to the USA. yet the United States used to be no longer a welcoming land of gold; in its place, chinese language immigrants have been frequently greeted by way of prejudice, outrageous taxes, and actual violence. Overcoming the hostilities, many chinese language immigrants, just like the Wong kin profiled during this novel, tailored and made the hot kingdom domestic. transforming into up, I heard many relations tales approximately my Toisanese/Taishanese great-great-great maternal grandfather, a gold prospector in California; my great-great maternal grandfather, a translator at Angel Island prison; my maternal great-grandfather, a exertions contractor and the founding father of the Woo family members organization in Seattle; and my maternal grandfather, a member of the united states army police. whereas there has been overt discrimination, there have been nonetheless extra fiscal possibilities and a better danger for a extra promising destiny for his or her little ones within the usa. Like many others, my mother’s kinfolk was once separated via wars and immigration legislation. It was once now not until eventually after the 1945 conflict Brides Act that my maternal grandmother (and different chinese language girls) might eventually sign up for their husbands within the US. After adjustments to the Immigration legislations of 1965, my mom may possibly ultimately subscribe to her kinfolk. I grew up within the predominantly Asian-American local of Beacon Hill in Seattle, Washington, the place the results of this ancient separation of households used to be commonly felt. but, in the course of my whole secondary-school schooling, the tales of chinese language americans and different Asian and Pacific Island american citizens, have been appreciably absent. utilizing ancient records, excerpts from interviews with aged citizens, and finely precise illustrations, Wong captures the ache, frustration, and braveness of early chinese language pioneers and their contemporaries and makes it comprehensible for readers of many age teams. This was once details I actively sought as a tender scholar. the results of Wong’s efforts is a relocating portrait of a heroic humans jointly resisting oppression, adapting to an unfriendly land, and finally remodeling it right into a domestic for his or her descendants.