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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Tombstone in Cochise County, Arizona — The American Mountains (Southwest)
 

Hoptown

Chinese Section

 

—1879 —

 
Hoptown Marker image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, June 9, 2014
1. Hoptown Marker
Inscription. In 1879 there were 11 people in Tombstone of Chinese descent. By 1882 there were 250. The area between 2nd and 3rd and Allen and Toughnut was the area where they lived and had businesses, commonly called "Hoptown". The Chinese ran laundries, restaurants, grew vegetables and were laborers, houseboys, servants and prostitutes. Quong Kee began the famous Can Can Restaurant with partner Ah Lum. Ah Lum's wife, China Mary, was said to control "Hoptown”. She was an employment broker who guaranteed that her employees would not cheat or steal. She also ran the opium dens and Chinese prostitution. At one point there was an Anti-Chinese League formed that asked residents to refuse to trade with Chinese owned businesses. In spite of this, many Chinese operated long term successful businesses. There is a Chinese section in Boot Hill Graveyard where China Mary and Quong Kee are buried.
 
Erected 2009 by Tombstone Restoration Commission. (Marker Number 41.)
 
Location. 31° 42.774′ N, 110° 4.107′ W. Marker is in Tombstone, Arizona, in Cochise County. Marker is on South 3rd Street south of East Allen Street, on the right when traveling south. Touch for map. Marker is located along the sidewalk, between the Four
Marker photo: China Mary – Early 1880’s image. Click for full size.
2. Marker photo: China Mary – Early 1880’s
(from "Chinese Residents in Tombstone, by Sam Shueh and Eric Chen) Perhaps the most famous Chinese person in Tombstone was China Mary (nee Sing, aka Ah Chum), a plump woman from Zhongshan county. China Mary managed a well-stocked general store where she dealt in both American and Chinese goods. White men and Asians were both allowed to play in the gambling hall behind her store. They had to abide her rules.
Deuces Saloon and the Saloon Theater. Marker is at or near this postal address: 109 South 3rd Street, Tombstone AZ 85638, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Allen English Home (within shouting distance of this marker); Cochise County Bank (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Can Can Restaurant (about 400 feet away); Rose Tree (about 500 feet away); Tombstone City Hall (about 500 feet away); Southern Pacific Train Depot (about 500 feet away); The Grand Hotel (about 600 feet away); Campbell & Hatch Saloon and Billiard Parlor (about 600 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Tombstone.
 
Also see . . .  Chinese Residents in Tombstone. Around 1870, hundreds of Chinese were employed in the construction of the Southern Pacific railroad through Arizona. When the railroad construction was completed, all the Chinese laborers were let go immediately. Born survivors, the Chinese managed to settle in nearby towns, finding work in the mines or being redeployed into the service industry. They accepted whatever positions they could get. Several hundred Chinese settled in Tombstone during the Arizona silver boom of the 1880s. Like most cities, Tombstone had its Chinatown. Whites called it "Hoptown."
Hoptown (<i>view from marker; Saloon Theater on left</i>) image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, June 9, 2014
3. Hoptown (view from marker; Saloon Theater on left)
To avoid trouble with residents in other parts of the town, the Chinese hopped in and out of connecting private tunnels. In a town of more than 5000, perhaps 300 to 500 were Chinese who lived in their own quarters. (Submitted on March 16, 2019, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.) 
 
Categories. Asian AmericansIndustry & CommerceSettlements & SettlersWomen
 
115, 117, 119 South 3rd Street<br>(<i>south of marker on South 3rd Street</i>) image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, June 9, 2014
4. 115, 117, 119 South 3rd Street
(south of marker on South 3rd Street)
This 1881 double adobe was the site of Garet & Page’s Wagon Shop. To your left was the charcoal yard. Charcoal was a primary source of heat for both forges and homes in the early 1880’s. This block was part of “Hop Town,” the heart of Tombstone’s Chinese community. Double rows of adobe bricks form walls 18” thick – keeping the interior cool in summer and warm in winter.
115, 117, 119 South 3rd Street<br>(<i>south of marker on South 3rd Street</i>) image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, June 9, 2014
5. 115, 117, 119 South 3rd Street
(south of marker on South 3rd Street)
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on March 16, 2019. This page originally submitted on March 15, 2019, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. This page has been viewed 115 times since then. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on March 16, 2019, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.
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