Fallen Leaves' Homecoming: Notes on the 1893 Gold Mountain Charity Cemetery in Xinhui.
Chinese America: History and Perspectives 2002, Annual
Chinese America: History and Perspectives
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Author's Note: Xinhui, together with three other counties--Kaiping, Enping, and Taishan/Xinning--constitute the so-called Siyi (four counties) regions from which almost 80 percent of the early (pre-1949) Chinese-American population, originated. In the imperial (pre-1911) days, Xinhui was for a long time the administrative center and was regarded as the most educated of the four counties. Known as the Wenhua cheng (City of Culture), it was the home of several outstanding and influential men of letters who made their marks on Chinese intellectual history: Chen Xianzhang (Chen Baisha) in the Ming dynasty, Liang Qichao in the late Qing period, and Chen Hun in the contemporary era. In politics, Wu Tingfang, born of Xinhui emigrant parents in Singapore, and an outstanding diplomat in the late Qing period, became the Chinese ambassador to the United States, Spain, and Peru. Wu Langxi, a modern Chinese writer, was an influential figure holding to the Mao Zedong ideological path in contemporary China. Hence there is t he local saying, "Dongguan quantou, Xinhui bi," meaning that Dongguan county, situated on the east side of the Pearl River Delta, is the "fist" (i.e., home of military men) and Xinhui, on the west side, is the "brush" (i.e., home of literary men). But though Xinhui enjoyed intellectual distinction in the Siyi area, its literacy was not apparent in the history of early migration to the Americas. Like Kai ping, Engping, and Taishan emigrants, Xinhui emigrants to what was called "Gold Mountain" (Jinshan) were mostly peasants, laborers, and working partners of small service-oriented business such as laundries, groceries, and restaurants. This personal essay looks at one aspect of the bond between the new Gold Mountain community and the ancestral homeland--a bond made by working-class participants whose journey to Gold Mountain is the basis of our Chinese-American community legacy and cultural heritage. DISCOVERY OF THE 1893 GOLD MOUNTAIN "CHARITY CEMETERY" IN XINHUI
- Category: Social Science
- Published: Jan 01, 2002
- Publisher: Chinese Historical Society
- Seller: The Gale Group, Inc.
- Print Length: 44 Pages
- Language: English