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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
New York in New York County, New York — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

Gateway to Old Chinatown

Doyers at Bowery

 
 
Gateway to Old Chinatown Marker image. Click for full size.
By Larry Gertner, July 25, 2016
1. Gateway to Old Chinatown Marker
Inscription.  
In the 1890s, this Bowery at Doyers Street corner was a gateway to the tiny but thriving Chinatown, even then a famed tourist destination. Squeezed between Bowery, Mott, Pell and Doyers Streets and dominated by Chinese shops and residents, it was also a multi-ethnic enclave, like the nearby Five Points.

The local funeral parlor served both Irish and Chinese, and Chinese restaurants – unlike places uptown – welcomed African-American diners.

Nicknamed the ‘Bloody Angle’, Doyers St was sometimes the scene of gangland battles, but primarily it was a place of culture and commerce, with famed artist Wong Kai Kee’s art store at 1 Doyers and the elegant Chinese-American Tuxedo restaurant on the corner at 2 Bowery. The Chinese Theatre at 5-7 Doyers, which presented Chinese opera, was popular with locals and a must-see stop on Bowery/Chinatown “slumming tours.”

Noticeably absent were Chinese women. The discriminatory Chinese Exclusion Acts (1882-1943) severely restricted Chinese immigration and harshly limited the entry of Chinese women.

Thus, Chinatown’s kinship associations became the center
Doyers Street at Bowery image. Click for full size.
By Larry Gertner, July 25, 2016
2. Doyers Street at Bowery
The marker is at the building at the left.
of Chinese American community life during these years. The Chinese Masonic Building at 22 Mott Street was where Dr. Sun Yat-sen raised funds for the 1911 overthrow of China’s imperial government.

-Amy Chin, Arts Consultant
 
Erected 2016 by Bowery Alliance of Neighbors.
 
Location. 40° 42.844′ N, 73° 59.865′ W. Marker is in New York, New York, in New York County. Marker is on Broadway near Doyers Street, on the right when traveling south. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: New York NY 10038, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Barnum's First Big Bamboozle (within shouting distance of this marker); Birthplace of Modern Tattooing! (within shouting distance of this marker); NYC’s Oldest Brick House (within shouting distance of this marker); Americans of Chinese Ancestry (within shouting distance of this marker); Kimlau Square (within shouting distance of this marker); Lin Ze Xu (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Windows On The Bowery (about 300 feet away); Roll of Honor (about 400 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in New York.
 
More about this marker. One of more than sixty entries in the “Windows on the Bowery” series.
 
Categories. Asian Americans
 
Inset image. Click for full size.
circa 1900s
3. Inset
Chinese Tuxedo Restaurant, Doyers & Bowery, early 1900s (2 Bowery)
2 Bowery now image. Click for full size.
By Larry Gertner, March 23, 2019
4. 2 Bowery now
Inset image. Click for full size.
By Photo courtesy of Museum of Chicago
5. Inset
Wong Kai Kee (1853-?)
1 Doyers Street today image. Click for full size.
By Larry Gertner, March 23, 2019
6. 1 Doyers Street today
Inset image. Click for full size.
7. Inset
Chinese Theatre entrance, 5-7 Doyers Street, date unknown. Note discriminatory seating.
Chinese Theater site, 5-7 Doyers Street image. Click for full size.
By Larry Gertner, March 23, 2019
8. Chinese Theater site, 5-7 Doyers Street
The "Bloody Angle" is just beyond.
The Chinese Masonic Building at 22 Mott Street image. Click for full size.
By Larry Gertner, April 4, 2019
9. The Chinese Masonic Building at 22 Mott Street
 
More. Search the internet for Gateway to Old Chinatown.
 
Credits. This page was last revised on April 17, 2019. This page originally submitted on April 9, 2019, by Larry Gertner of New York, New York. This page has been viewed 36 times since then. Last updated on April 17, 2019, by Larry Gertner of New York, New York. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. submitted on April 9, 2019, by Larry Gertner of New York, New York.   7, 8, 9. submitted on April 10, 2019, by Larry Gertner of New York, New York. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.
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