This short bibliography is of secondary sources--of non-contemporary books and articles–relevant to Chinese in the Pacific Northwest, which the editors have found to be especially useful.   References to primary (i.e., contemporary) sources will be found in or after the relevant entries on other pages of this website.  


Pan, Lynn, ed.  The Encyclopedia of the Chinese Overseas.  Singapore: Archipelago Press/ Landmark Books, 1998
Expensive, profusely illustrated, authoritative.  Puts U.S. Chinese history in international perspective.  Supplements and
expands the same author's Sons of the Yellow Emperor.


Arkush, R. David and Leo O. Lee.  Land Without Ghosts, Impressions of America, 1850-2000. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1989.
Consisting of translations from Chinese, the book tells part of the Chinese side of the story.    

Cassel, Susie Lan, ed. The Chinese in America: A History from the Gold Mountain to the New Millennium.  Walnut Creek, etc: Altamira Press, 2002
Edited volume with 24 short articles on economic activities, etc., including two on Ah Quin, a 19th century merchant, and labor
contractor whose diary, uniquely, survives

Chan, Anthony B.  Gold Mountain.  Vancouver: New Star Books, 1983
Immigration to North America from a Canadian point of view

Chang, Iris.  The Chinese in America.  New York: Penguin Books, 2003
 Modern classic.  Opinionated, perceptive, strongly written, sometimes wrong.

Chen, Jack.  The Chinese of America.  Harper & Row: San Francisco, 1980
Intelligent and well organized.  One of the better general books on the subject, although more credit might have been given to
other, earlier Chinese American researchers.

Chinn, Thomas W.; Lai, H. Mark; and Choy, Philip P., eds.   A History of the Chinese in California, A Syllabus.  San Francisco: Chinese Historical Society of America, 1969
A seminal work that laid the foundations for much subsequent work on Chinese American history, using Chinese- as well 
as English-language sources.

Choy, Philip; Lorraine Dong; and Marlon K. Hom.  The Coming Man: 19th Century American Perceptions of the Chinese.  Hong Kong: Joint Publishing Co., 1994.
Fascinating and appalling.  Anti-Chinese cartoons and book illustrations from Phil Choy’s unmatched personal collection.

Chung, Sue Fawn and Priscilla Wegars, eds.  Chinese American Death Rituals: Respecting the Ancestors.  Lanham, etc: Altamira Press, 2005
Pioneering general survey, with much archaeological data in eight articles.  Should be read in conjunction with the “Death” 
and “Reburial” pages of this website

Coolidge, Mary Roberts.  Chinese Immigration.  New York: Henry Holt, 1909.
An objective, comprehensive study of the subject with an emphasis on California, by a Stanford University professor.  Available
free on line at

Daniels, Roger.  Coming to America: A History of Immigration and Ethnicity in American Life. New York: Harper Collins Publishers, 1990.
Chinese immigration in the context of policies and problems of other immigrant groups

Dirlik, Arif, ed.  Chinese on the American Frontier.  Lanham, etc.: Rowman & Littlefield, 2001.
With 29 articles, the book covers Chinese activities in the Northwest, Southwest, and Rocky Mountain states in the 19th
century.  Uneven, but nothing else has such wide coverage of the non-California West..

Friday, Chris.  Organizing Asian American Labor: The Pacific Coast Canned-Salmon Industry, 1870-1942.  Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1994.
A deeply researched study with much detail about Chinese cannery workers in Oregon, Washington, and Alaska.  The
definitive work on the su bject.

Lai, Him Mark.  Becoming Chinese American: A History of Communities and Institutions.  Walnut Creek, CA: Altamira Press, 2004
Trail-blazing and irreplaceable work by one of the first Chinese American historians to have mastered the full range of primary
sources in both Chinese and English.  

Lee, Rose Hum. The Chinese in the United States of America.  Hong Kong University Press, 1960.
Earlier classic.  The first book-length study of Chinese Americans by a Chinese American, a sociology professor born in Butte,

Pfaelzer, Jean.  Driven Out: The Forgotten War against Chinese Americans.  New York: Random House, 2007.
Influential summary of anti-Chinese activities during the 1880s in the American West.  Before Driven Out, most historians had
not understood how pervasive those activities actually were.

Seward, George F.  Chinese Immigration in its Social and Economic Aspects.  New York: Scribners, 1881
Even earlier classic.  The first book-length study of Chinese Americans by anyone.  Available free online, at

Yung, Judy.  Unbound Feet: A Social History of Chinese Women in San Francisco.  Berkeley, etc.: University of California Press, 1995.  Unbound Voices: A Documentary History of Chinese Women in San Francisco.   Berkeley, etc.: University of California Press, 1999.
Thus far, the most complete treatment of how Chinese women adapted to living in the U. S. in the late 19th and early 20th
centuries  The second book consists of quotations and interviews.

Yung, Judy; Gordon H. Chang; and Him Mark Lai eds.,  Chinese American Voices, From the Gold Rush to the Present.  Berkeley, etc: University of California Press, 2006.
Invaluable. 50 short writings by Chinese in the U.S., many freshly translated and unavailable elsewhere.  Includes Wong Chin
Foo’s famous, funny English-language essay, “Why I am not a Christian” (1887)



Amos, Robert and Kileasa Wong.  Inside Chinatown: Ancient Culture in a New World.  Hong Kong: Touchwood Editions, 2009

Chow, Lily. Sojourners in the North.  Prince George, B.C., Vaitlin Press, 1996. 

Institute for Student Teaching and Research, ed.  Learning Chinese Canada.  Vancouver: Institute for Student Teaching and Research, U. of British Columbia and Chinese Canadian Historical Society of British Columbia, 2009

Lai, David Chuenyan.  Chinese Community Leadership: Case Study of Victoria in Canada.  New Jersey, etc.: World Scientific,  2010.

Lai, David Chuenyan and Pamela Madoff. Building and Rebuilding Harmony: The Gateway to Victoria's Chinatown.  Victoria: University of Victoria, 1997.

Morton, James.  In  the Sea of Sterile Mountains:The Chinese in British Columbia.  Vancouver: J. J. Douglas, 1973

Roy, Patricia E.  White Man's province: British Columbia and Chinese and Japanese Immigrants 1858-1914.  Vancouver: University of British Columbia Press, 1989.

Wong, Larry.  Dimsum Stories: A Chinatown Childhood.  Vancouver: Chinese Canadian Historical Society of British Columbia, 2011

Wynne, Robert E. "American Labor Leaders and the Vancouver Anti-Oriental Riot." Pacific Northwest Quarterly, vol 57 no 4, Oct 1966, pp 172-179.

Yorath, Chris.  A Measure of Value: The Story of the D'Arcy Island Leper Colony.   Victoria/Surrey B.C.: Touchwood Editions, 2000.


Buell, Paul D. and Christopher Muench. “ A Chinese Apothecary In Frontier Idaho,” Annals of The Chinese Historical Society of The Pacific Northwest, 1983, pp 39-48.

Derig, Betty. “Celestials in the Diggings,” Idaho Yesterdays 16:2, 1972.

Elsensohn, Sister Alfreda M.  Idaho Chinese Lore.  Cottonwood, ID: Idaho Corporation of Benedictine Sisters, 1970.

Hart, Arthur A.  Chinatown, Boise, Idaho, 1870-1970.  Boise: Historic Idaho, Inc., no date (2000?)

McCunn, Ruthanne Lum.  Thousand Pieces of Gold: A Biographical Novel.  San Francisco: Design Enterprises of San Francisco, 1981.  [The 2nd edition, 2004, has an extensive "Reader's Guide" appendix].

Simon-Smolinski, Carole. “Idaho’s Chinese Americans,” in Mercier, Laurie and Carol Simon-Smolinski, editors, Idaho’s Ethnic Heritage: Historical Overviews. Vol. 1. Boise: Idaho Centennial Commission and Idaho State Historical Society, March, 1990.

Trull, Fern Coble.  The History of the Chinese in Idaho friom 1864 to 1910.  MA Thesis, University of Oregon, 1946.  [With many first-hand interviews, available only at a few university libraries in Oregon]

Wunder, John. “The Courts and the Chinese In Frontier Idaho,” Idaho Yesterdays 25:1,1881.

Zhu, Liping.  A Chinaman's Chance: The Chinese on the Rocky Mountain Mining Frontier.  Denver: University of Colorado Press, 2000


Chung, Sue Fawn.  In Pursuit of Gold: Chinese American Miners and Merchants in the American West.  Champaign: University of Illinois Press, 2011.

Chung, Sue Fawn and Elmer Ursco. "The Anti-Chinese Riot in Tonopah, Nevada, 1903." Chinese America: History and Perspectives, 2003, pp 35-45.

Lai, Him Mark. "The 1903 Anti-Chinese Riot in Tonopah, Nevada from a Chinese Perspective: Two Letters." Chinese America: History and Perspectives,  2003, pp 47-51.


Wunder, John R. “The Chinese and the Courts in the Pacific Northwest: Justice Denied.” Pacific Historical Review 52 (1983).


Lee, Rose Hum  Growth and Decline of Chinese Communities in the Rocky Mountain Region.  New York: Arno Press, 1978.

Zhu, Liping and Rose Estep Fosna.  Ethnic Oasis: The Chinese in the Black Hills,  Pierre: South Dakota State Historical Society, 2004.


Barlow, Jeffrey and Christine Richardson.  China Doctor of John Day.  Portland: Binford & Mort, 1979.

Chinese Consolidated Benevolent Association.  Dreams of the West: A History of the Chinese in Oregon 1850-1950.  Portland: Ooligan Press, Chinese Consolidated Benevolent Association, and Portland State University, 2007.

Clark, Hugh. Portland’s Chinese: The Early Years. Portland: Center for Urban Education, 1975.

Ho, Nelson Chia-chi. Portland’s Chinatown: The History of An Urban District. Portland:  Bureau of Planning, City of Portland, 1978.

Nokes, R. Gregory. Massacred for Gold: The Chinese in Hells Canyon.  Corvallis: Oregon State University, 2009.

Wong, Marie Rose. Sweet Cakes, Long Journey: The Chinatowns of Portland, Oregon.  Seattle: University of Washington Press, 2004.


Akerlund, Drew. “Walla Walla’s Chinese Population: the History of Walla Walla’s Chinatown 1862-1962.” Annals of the Chinese Historical Society of the Pacific Northwest, 1984

Chin, Art. Golden Tassels, A History of the Chinese in Washington, 1857-1992. Seattle: Art Chin, 1992.

Chin, Doug.  Seattle’s International District: The Making of a Pan-Asian American Community (2nd Edition).  Seattle: International Examiner Press, 2009.

Chew, Ron and Cassie Chin.  Reflections of Seattle's Chinese Americans, The First Hundred Years.  Seattle: Wing Luke Museum, 2003.

Daniels, Roger. Asian America: Chinese and Japanese in the United States since 1850. Seattle: University of Washington Press, 1988.

Daniels, Roger. “Outsiders in ‘the Land of the Free’ Aspects of the Asian-American Experience in the Northwest," Columbia 10:4 (Fall, 1996).

Dougher, Sarah. Sent out on the Tracks They Built: Sinophobia in Olympia, 1886. Olympia, WA: S. Dougher and N. McClure, 19.8.

Gaylond, Mary.  Eastern Washington’s Past, Chinese and other Pioneers 1860-1910.  U. S. Dept of Agriculture, 1992.

Hildebrand, Lorraine Barker. Straw Hats, Sandals and Steel, The Chinese in Washington State.  Tacoma: Washington State American Revolution Bicentennial Commission, 1977.

Jue, Willard G.  “Chin Gee Hee, Chinese Pioneer Entrepreneur in Seattle and Toishan,”  Annals of the Chinese Historical Society of the Pacific Northwest, 1983, pp 31-38. 

Jue, Willard G. and Silas G. Jue. “Goon Dip: Entrepreneur, Diplomat, and Community Leader,” Annals of the Chinese Historical Society of the Pacific Northwest, 1984.

Kim, Robert H. C. and Richard Markov.  “The Chinese Exclusion Laws and Smuggling Chinese into Whatcom County, 1890-1900.  Annals of the Chinese Historical Society of the Pacific Northwest, 1983, pp 31-38.

Nomura, Gail. "Washington’s Asian/Pacific American Communities,” in Sid White and S. E. Solberg, editors. Peoples of Washington: Perspectives on Cultural Diversity. Pullman: Washington State University Press, 1989.

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This page was last updated: August 30, 2018