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How the Chinese Helped Build the Railroad that Helped Build America

ID : 1183   
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ClassGraphic Two-hour special event. Edward Jung and Mark Chiang, Ph.D. from the Chinese American Museum of Chicago will join us as we explore the experience of the immigrant Chinese workers in the late 1800s and their importance in building America. It is a fascinating story that is not widely known - racism and xenophobia made it easy for later generations to forget. It is the story of 20,000 Chinese laborers (approximately 90% of the workforce) who toiled from 1863-1869 to build the Central Pacific Railroad which ran from California to Utah and ultimately connected to the first transcontinental railroad. Yet the Chinese were the first and only ethnic group specifically singled out by constitutional law for denied entry into the U.S. and those already born in the U.S. were ineligible for rights of citizenship and protection by the 14th amendment. It wasn’t until 2014 (145 years after the Chinese started work on the railroad) that the U.S. formally recognized the Chinese immigrant’s role and place in American History. 
2019 marks the 150th anniversary of the “Golden Spike” — the ceremonial final four railroad spikes placed that joined the Central Pacific and Union Pacific railroads. We’ll mark this anniversary with the short film Chinese Workers & America’s First Transcontinental Railroad (1863-1869), followed by a presentation of Chinese contributions, immigration, and the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882 that lasted over 60 years. 
This special event is free and open to all current OLLI members. Registration is required. Refreshments will be served.

Edward Jung, 
Vice President of the Chinese American Museum of Chicago
Mark Chiang, Ph.D, UIC Global Asian Studies

Class Details

1 Sessions
Weekly - Fri

Wieboldt Hall

MultipleInstructor :
1.Jackie Lim2.Maurita Gholston3.Belinda Silber 



Please read:  Registration closes on Wednesday, October 16 at 5pm.



Schedule Information

Date(s) Class Days Times Location Instructor(s)
10/18/2019 - 10/18/2019 Weekly - Fri 10:00 AM - 12:00 PM Chicago, Wieboldt Hall  Map Belinda Silber  ; Maurita Gholston  ; Jackie Lim