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Keywords: chinese Americans

Historical Items

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Item 10378

Chinese immigrant, Portland, ca. 1910

Contributed by: Maine Historical Society Date: circa 1910 Location: Portland Media: Photoprint

Item 10379

Chinese man, Portland, ca. 1910

Contributed by: Maine Historical Society Date: circa 1910 Location: Portland Media: Photoprint

Item 10376

Chinese Sunday School student, Portland, ca. 1910

Contributed by: Maine Historical Society Date: circa 1910 Location: Portland Media: Photoprint

Online Exhibits

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Exhibit

Chinese in Maine

In 1857, when Daniel Cough left Amoy Island, China, as a stowaway on a sailing ship from Mt. Desert Island he was on his way into history as the first Chinese person to make his home in Maine. He was soon followed by a cigar maker and a tea merchant who settled in Portland and then by many more Chinese men who spread all over Maine working mostly as laundrymen.

Exhibit

"Twenty Nationalities, But All Americans"

Concern about immigrants and their loyalty in the post World War I era led to programs to "Americanize" them -- an effort to help them learn English and otherwise adjust to life in the United States. Clara Soule ran one such program for the Portland Public Schools, hoping it would help the immigrants be accepted.

Exhibit

Toy Len Goon: Mother of the Year

Toy Len Goon of Portland, an immigrant from China, was a widow with six children when she was selected in 1952 as America's Mother of the Year.

Site Pages

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Site Page

Portland Press Herald Glass Negative Collection - "Twenty Nationalities, But All Americans"

Americans" Twenty Nationalities, But All Americans View Immigration and Americanization slideshow Text by Rachel Miller Images from Maine…

Site Page

Biddeford History & Heritage Project - VII. Flow and ebb: the effects of industrial peak & global upheaval (1900-1955) - Page 1 of 3

… German, Dutch, Albanian, Greek, Yiddish, Spanish, Chinese, Turkish, Danish, Polish, Russian and Italian.

Site Page

Portland Press Herald Glass Negative Collection - National Federation of Business and Professional Women's Clubs

… 19th Amendment allocated voting rights for many American women – its mission then and now is to develop women’s leadership potential and advocate…

My Maine Stories

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Story

An Asian American Account
by Zabrina

An account from a Chinese American teen during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Story

From Chinese Laundress to Mother of the Year
by Dr. Andrea Louie

Toy Len Goon's granddaughter recounts her immigration to the US and becoming Mother of the Year.

Story

A Maine Family's story of being Prisoners of War in Manila
by Nicki Griffin

As a child, born after the war, I would hear these stories - glad they were finally written down

Lesson Plans

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Lesson Plan

Chinese in Maine

Grade Level: 6-8, 9-12, Postsecondary Content Area: Social Studies
This lesson presents an overview of the history of the Chinese/Chinese Americans in Maine and the U.S. including some of the factors that led to Chinese immigration to the U.S., the history of the Chinese Exclusion Act, a look into the xenophobia, racism, and discrimination many Chinese Americans have experienced and continue to experience, and the contributions of Chinese Americans to community life and culture in Maine.