Library Tuesdays: China Doctor of John Day, Oregon

| | »>

China Doctor of John Day, Oregon
by Jeffrey Barlow and Christine Richardson

This is a fascinating look at two enterprising Chinese immigrants to the small gold-mining town of John Day, Oregon, in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. At the time, Ing "Doc" Hay and Lung On were servicing a flourishing Chinatown with their general store and Chinese apothecary. (They also sold fireworks, booze, opium, and, later on, motorcars.) But as the gold veins dried up, the Chinese immigrants moved to bigger cities, and the two entrepreneurs ended up catering to the largely white settler population. For many years, Doc Hay was the only medical practitioner for many miles, and he often cured ailments that western medicine had given up as lost causes. "China Doctor" addresses issues like the gender imbalance in Chinatown and the West in general; Hay's diagnostic methods; and the complex and blatant racism toward and within the Chinese community in rural Oregon during the early part of the 20th century.

The general store that the two men ran was in operation until Hay's death in the 1960's, and is still intact and available to visit as a museum. The story of these two remarkable men is a very interesting read, both for their individual histories, and for the snapshot of cultural history it provides.

June 2012

Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
          1 2
3 4 5 6 7 8 9
10 11 12 13 14 15 16
17 18 19 20 21 22 23
24 25 26 27 28 29 30


link to Wolves 2011 reading list
link to more disgust bibliography