Chung Collection News


A documentary film produced by UBC Library about its renowned Wallace B. Chung and Madeline H. Chung Collection premieres on Knowledge Network on Friday, May 16, 2014.

Passage of Dreams: The Chung Collection features UBC alumnus Dr. Wallace B. Chung and his love of collecting Canadian Pacific items – a passion that began in childhood and grew to encompass more than 25,000 items. Featuring personal stories shared by Dr. Chung on his beloved artifacts, the film provides an important and insightful look at B.C. history from the perspective of early Chinese-Canadian pioneers. 

A short trailer and photo stills from the documentary can be viewed in the media advisory available at

The documentary airs on Knowledge Network (Channel 5 in Metro Vancouver areas) on May 16 at 10:30 p.m. PST and will be streamed online at the same time at We hope you tune in!


The Chinese Canadian Historical Society of British Columbia is holding a special dinner in conjunction with its AGM this Saturday, March 1 to honour Elder Larry Grant and Howard Grant of the Musqueam First Nation.

Elder Larry Grant is of both Musqueam and Chinese descent and have strong ties to both communities. You can read more about the history of Chinese-Canadian and First Nations marriages and families on the Chinese Canadian Stories site.

If you would like to attend this special dinner, you can contact . Tickets are $55 for members and $65 for non-members.


Items from the Chung Collection were chosen for inclusion in a new digital collection published by Adam Matthew Digital. The collection is called China, America and the Pacific: Trade & Cultural Exchange and is available to UBC users either on campus or authenticated from home. In addition to other resources from the Rare Books and Special Collections division of UBC Library, the collection also contains resources digitized from University of Alberta, the California Historical Society, the Phillips Library at the Peabody, the University of California San Diego and more.

If you've just discovered the Chung Collection through this new digital collection, welcome! We hope you enjoy your research.


Montecristo Magazine is celebrating it's 5th anniversary, and to celebrate they've compiled stories on collectors and collections- including Dr. Chung and the Chung Collection! You can read Dr. Chung's profiles, and the other collectors' profiles as well, here.


Gung Hay Fat Choy! We hope you enjoy the Chinese/Lunar New Year as we ring in the Year of the Horse. People born in the year of the horse are thought to be active, energetic and love to be around people- not unlike the faithful animals themselves! Human connection with horses goes back thousands of years and in collections like the Chung Collection, you'll find lots of historic photographs and images of horses.

Here's one that we're not sure where it was taken- it is believed to be Chinatown in either Vancouver or Portland Oregon.

The sign on the horse cart reads "Quong Sang Chong & Co." You can view a larger version and zoom in to see the details in our digital collections here. If you know where this is, we would love to hear from you! Email us at, or leave a comment below.

Here are some more images from the Chung Collection of horses:

Horse Racing at Hastings Park, 1936

Piano movers, ca. 1890

Mrs. Ricardo tries her hand at horse riding, ca. 1900.

Happy Year of the Horse! If you are looking for a way to celebrate, the Chinese Benevolent Association of Vancouver's Chinese New Year Parade is always a hit.


From our friends at the Chinese Canadian Historical Society of B.C.:

"We are pleased to announce reduced fees for early registration for our CCHSBC “Saltwater City for Youth”, a one week day camp for young teens, August 12-16. Registrations received by Monday, July 15 will be only $100 for CCHS members and $125 for non-members.  CCHSBC membership is only $20. This is a discount from $160 and $200 respectively.

The objective of the camp is to educate young teens about the role Chinese Canadians have played in the historic development of Vancouver and how they continue to shape the city.  Field trips include Museum of Vancouver, Chinatown, UBC and Steveston. Governor General award winning author Paul Yee will speak at the initial camp day.

Please visit our website for the registration form and more information; and inform your friends and relatives of this exciting opportunity to learn about Chinese Canadian history. Teens of all backgrounds are welcome.

CCHSBC kindly acknowledges financial funding from the Province of B.C. and support from the Museum of Vancouver.

Thank you, 

Ken Yip, President "


Come celebrate UBC Alumni Weekend 2013 on Saturday May 25th at the Irving K. Barber Learning Centre (home of the Chung Collection!), which will host a program featuring UBC alumnus Dr. Laifong Leung. Professor Leung will talk about the Chinese community in Canada in the 20th century as part of “Chinese Canadian Stories: From Early Literature to Modern Archives.” 
Following the talk, we will offer a tour of the Chung Collection at Rare Books and Special Collections. The collection will also be open for self-guided tours from noon to 4 p.m.

And by the way... you don't need to be an Alumni to visit the Chung Collection on May 25th! Drop by anytime between noon and 4 pm and you're welcome to visit the exhibition.


From our friends at the Chinese Canadian Historical Society of B.C.:

"CCHSBC is pleased to host “Saltwater City for Youth”, a one week day camp for young teens, August 12-16.  The objective of the camp is to educate young teens about the role Chinese Canadians have played in the historic development of Vancouver and how they continue to shape the city.  Field trips include Museum of Vancouver, Chinatown, UBC and Steveston.

Please visit the website for the registration form and more information. Inform your friends and relatives of this exciting opportunity to learn about Chinese Canadian history. Teens of all backgrounds are welcome. Early registration is recommended, $160 for CCHS members and $200 for non-members.

 CCHSBC kindly acknowledges financial funding from the Province of B.C. and support from the Museum of Vancouver."


Passage of Dreams is a documentary filmed in 2012 and premiered at a special event earlier this year at UBC about Dr. Chung and his collection. We're really excited to announce that it has been nominated for a Golden Sheaf Award which is part of the Yorkton Film Festival in Saskatchewan. Much of the documentary was filmed at the Chung Collection in the Rare Books and Special Collections branch, which was a fun and interesting experience for all of our staff. Our congratulations to director Karin Lee!

If you don't happen to be in Saskatchewan and would like to see the film, DVD's can be borrowed at several library branches.


If you're lucky enough to live in Vancouver or a place with a similar climate, you're starting to see the cherry blossoms bloom. Vancouverites look forward to this time of year as our city is home to many cherry trees. According to the Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival, the trend for planting cherry trees started in Vancouver in the early 1930's when the mayors of Kobe and Yokohama donated 500 cherry trees to be planted in Vancouver, to honour Japanese Canadians who fought in WWI.

To honour this time of year, our featured photograph for the month of April shows cherry blossoms in Tokyo:

This photograph, like many from the Chung Collection depicting international scenes, is part of a scrapbook kept by world travelers on the Canadian Pacific Railway lines. These particular travelers took both the Empress of India steamship throughout Asia, and a train tour in North America. You can see in the bottom right corner that the photograph was distributed commercially and sold to travelers for their photograph album- this was common practice before owning a camera for your personal use became common. This album was assembled in 1910.

To check out good cherry blossom viewing and related events in Vancouver, be sure to check the Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival website!

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