Fighting the Tigers: Chinese Mobility as Resistance During the Exclusion Era
During the mid-nineteenth century, Chinese and many other immigrants flooded California’s shores in pursuit of economic opportunities. Over the next several decades, Chinese labor became threatening to national, Euro-American interests and federal and state governments passed a variety of taxes, ordinances, and legislation targeting Chinese communities. The most restrictive of these were the Chinese Exclusion and Geary acts, which barred immigration by Chinese laborers and severely limited their mobility patterns. Through ingenuity and active resistance, however, Chinese settlers frequently traveled between the West and their homeland and found ways to circumvent racist regulations. Employing historical documents, immigration files, and archaeological surveys and excavations, we present a case study of Chinese fishermen who lived in Santa Barbara, circa 1880 to 1915, that illustrates how these fishers skirted exclusion laws and successfully carved out economic opportunities at the margins of American society.
SAA 2015 abstracts made available in tDAR courtesy of the Society for American Archaeology and Center for Digital Antiquity Collaborative Program to improve digital data in archaeology. If you are the author of this presentation you may upload your paper, poster, presentation, or associated data (up to 3 files/30MB) for free. Please visit http://www.tdar.org/SAA2015 for instructions and more information.
This Resource is Part of the Following Collections
- Society for American Archaeology 80th Annual Meeting, San Francisco, CA (2015) •
- Migration and Mobility in the New World
Cite this Record
Fighting the Tigers: Chinese Mobility as Resistance During the Exclusion Era. Linda Bentz, Todd J. Braje. Presented at The 80th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, San Francisco, California. 2015 ( tDAR id: 395242)
min long: -125.464; min lat: 32.101 ; max long: -114.214; max lat: 42.033 ;