Toy Len Goon

Dogan Goon in U.S. Army uniform, ca. 1918

Dogan Goon in U.S. Army uniform, ca. 1918
Item 10366   info
Maine Historical Society

Dogan Goon served as a private in U.S. Army Medical Department in World War I. He enlisted June 24, 1918 and was honorably discharged on January 13, 1919.

Even though Chinese immigrants were not allowed to become U.S. citizens because of the 1882 Chinese Exclusion Act, they served in the armed forces.

Goon came to Portland around 1914, and later arrested for violating the Chinese Exclusion Act. His case went to trial, where he gained permission to stay in the U.S. by convincing the courts he had been born in California (although he was likely born in China.) His citizenship status was reconfirmed after this discharge from the Army.

This new standing made it possible to return to China and marry Toy Len, the bride selected by his family and a matchmaker.

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