Chung Collection News


Congratulations to Bowen Zhang who recently won the Jack Webster award for Best Reporting- Chinese Language for his piece "Heroes of Chinatown," which aired on OMNI news! "Heroes of Chinatown" is about the soccer teams of the 1930's and 40's in Vancouver's Chinatown. Bowen came to the Chung Collection and did some of the filming in the Chung Collection exhibition, and featured a number of Chung Collection photographs in the documentary piece. We have a copy of the DVD of the piece in both English and Mandarin for use by researchers at Rare Books and Special Collections.

To see photographs of the soccer teams in the Chung Collection, you can search for photos and the keywords "football" or "soccer."


The Chung Collection exhibition will be closed November 14 for the day, as we install new exhibitions. We're really excited to tell you about these new additions- stayed tuned!

Our apologies for the inconvenience. Note also that the Chung exhibition, along with other branches of the library, is closed for Remembrance Day on November 12th.



We often tell visitors to the Chung Collection that the collection contains material related to three main themes: Immigration and Settlement (especially Chinese-Canadians), the Canadian Pacific Railway, and B.C. history more generally.
What is so interesting about the collection is how these three themes intersect, which is demonstrated by this month's featured photograph, of a Chinese-style junk in the Inner Harbour in Victoria.
In the photograph, taken ca. 1920's (based on the Johnson Street bridge sticking up in the background), a junk is docked in the Inner Harbour, while a number of people take a look at the foreign vessel from the dock- a really interesting intersection of B.C. history and Chinese culture and industry.
This image is on permanent display in the Chung Collection exhibition room- if you're new to the collection, the exhibition is free and open to the public! Check out the exhibition section of the website for details.

On October 19th at the Coast Coal Harbour Hotel is a free public event entitled "Brokering Belonging or Contesting White Supremacy: Controversies in Chinese and Asian Canadian Educational Histories and their Implications." A four person panel will lead the discussion, comprised of John Price (University of Victoria), Lisa Mar (University of Maryland), Timothy Stanley (University of Ottawa) and Henry Yu (University of British Columbia). The event will take place from 7 - 9 pm and is co-sponsored by the Chinese Canadian Historical Society of B.C., the Canadian History of Education Association, and the Chinese Canadian Stories Project.


In homage to the return of UBC's this September students, this month's featured photograph is of a student fundraising group in 1931. The group of Chinese Canadian students were raising funds through a concert for a new stadium at UBC:

The place to go for university history is the University of British Columbia Archives, which is a branch of the library (and neighbours to us here at Rare Books and Special Collections/The Chung Collection, so you can visit them and us at the same time!). On their website, they provide both an alphabetic listing and a chronological listing of UBC buildings. According to the entry for the Old Stadium (since demolished) the Stadium was built in 1931 including funds raised by the Alma Mater Society. This benefits from this concert of Chinese students were presumably included in that fundraising campaign. The photograph was taken by Yucho Chow Studio, who photographed many Chinese-Canadian groups and families.


The Chung Collection and Rare Books and Special Collections are back to our school-term Saturday opening schedule, meaning we're open on Saturdays from 12-5. This is in effect from today (September 15) to December 15 and we will be open on Saturdays in the seceond semester also. Please feel free to come by and visit the Chung Collection Exhibition!

UBC Campus is a great destination on a Saturday- you could start your day at the UBC Farm Market, and visit the Museum of Anthropology, the Beaty Biodiversity Museum, or the Belkin Art Gallery before coming to visit us at the Chung Collection! Hope to see you this afternoon, or maybe next weekend.


This month for our featured photograph, we longed to show a vintage shot of the fair at the Pacific National Exhibition, a Vancouver summer favorite. Alas, the Chung Collection does not have one. We do however have this great shot of a fair in Red Deer, AB:

Fair grounds at Red Deer

The photograph dates from the mid 1920's - 30's, and originates from the Clandonald material in the collection. The Clandonald material tells the story of Scottish and Irish immigrants who settled near Red Deer as part of the CPR's land colonization programs. You can browse through all the Clandonald material, most of which has been digitized and can be viewed online.


Rare Books and Special Collections, which includes the Chung Collection exhibition room, is temporarily reducing its opening hours to 10 am to 4 pm, for the period July 30 to August 31.

We apologize for any inconvenience this might cause. Please feel free to email us at with any questions or concerns.


This October, Vancouver's Arsenal Pulp Press is publishing a graphic novel called Escape to Gold Mountain: A Graphic History of the Chinese in North America by David H.T. Wong. From the APP catalogue:

"The history of Chinese immigration to Canada and the US over the past 100-plus years has been fraught with sadness and indignity; newcomers to North America encountered discrimination, subjugation, and separation from loved ones...Escape to Gold Mountain is the first graphic novel to tell their story: based on historical documents and interviews with elders, this is a vivid history of the Chinese in their search for "Gold Mountain" (the Chinese colloquialism for North America) as seen through the eyes of the Wong family. They traverse the challenges of eking out an existence in their adopted homeland with hope and determination, creating a poignant immigrant's legacy for their sons and daughters."

Suggested for readers 12 and up, this sounds like an entertaining and educational read for any age! We will certainly be adding a copy of this publication to the Chung Collection when it is released.

Rare Books and Special Collections (where the Chung Collection is located) also happens to house the archives of Arsenal Pulp Press.


The Chinese Cultural Centre in Vancouver is organizing a photo exhibition to document Chinese Canadians from 1952 to 2012, to celebrate Queen Elizabeth II's Diamond Jubilee. They are looking for photographs that document the sucess stories, life or work of any Chinese Canadian during this time period. The deadline for submissions is July 18th at 5 pm, and the exhibition will be held from August 4 through August 19th.

Get in touch with the Chinese Cultural Centre through their contact page for more information and a registration form!

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