Auburn in Placer County, California — The American West (Pacific Coastal)
The Chinese Coolie
This giant statue relocated to this historic site on November 27, 1989. A gift to the community of Auburn from the following:
Richard & Kathryn Yue - Shanghi Restaurant & Bar • Gary Tanko - Gary C. Tanko Well Drilling, Inc. • Tom Dwelle - Nella Oil Company • Brad & Merrill Weston - Auburn Printers • Norma Harris - Auburn Iron Works • Bill Bertrando - Bertrando & Associates • Lipschultz & Berg - Attorneys at Law • Pacific Gas & Electric • Heart Federal Savings & Loan • First American Title • Auburn Downtown Business Assn. • Auburn Area Chamber of Commerce
Location. 38° 54.13′ N, 121° 3.95′ W. Marker is in Auburn, California, in Placer County. Marker can be reached from Lincoln Way. Touch for map. The statue and marker are in the Transcontinental Railroad Plaza, at the south end of the Auburn Depot, 601 Lincoln Way. Marker is at or near this postal address: 601 Lincoln Way, Auburn CA 95603, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this Marguerite Mine “Quartz Rock” (here, next to this marker); Southern Pacific Caboose (here, next to this marker); Auburn Depot (within shouting distance of this marker); First Transcontinental Railroad (within shouting distance of this marker); a different marker also named Auburn Depot (within shouting distance of this marker); East Auburn Bell Tower (within shouting distance of this marker); Auburn Iron Works (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Ford & Co. Building (about 400 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Auburn.
Also see . . .
1. Immigration in America - Coolies. "...Chinese coolies came to the United States both as free immigrants looking for work and as contract workers hired to build America’s first transcontinental railroad. They worked in gold mines, on the railroad, and on California levees, and their work ethic set a high standard.
The term “coolie” may have derived from the Hindi Kuli, an aboriginal tribal name, or kuli, a Tamil word meaning “wages.” Europeans used the term to refer to low-status laborers in their Asian colonies. Early nineteenth century Chinese workers in the United States were called “coolies,” which soon acquired a pejorative connotation..." (Submitted on March 16, 2015, by James King of San Miguel, California.)
2. The Chinese in California. "Legend says that a Chinese explorer sailed to California centuries before the birth of Christ. No historic documentation can be found to validate this event. It is thought that individual Chinese may have migrated to New Spain via the Philippines during the hey day of the Spanish Galleons. Some probably worked their way north as the Spanish settled coastal California. A Chinese man named Ah Nam served as Governor Pablo Sola's cook in Monterey and was baptized Antonio Maria de Jesus in 1815. The earliest direct contact between China and California was established in the early nineteenth century as European and American traders purchased fur pelts in North America for sale in China. Few if any Chinese appear to have travelled to California in the pursuit of this trade and no Chinese merchants established themselves in California. The Ching Dynasty had severely restricted all contact with the outside world. After 1760 the only ports open to foreign trade were located in Kwangtung Province in the south of China. It was against the law for Chinese to travel outside of China except with the specific permission of the Emperor. The Opium War of 1839-1842 resulted in the Treaty of Nanking which opened five additional ports and ceded Hong Kong to Britain, but contact between Westerners and Chinese was still severely limited..." (Submitted on March 16, 2015, by James King of San Miguel, California.)
3. The Anti-Coolie Tax Act of 1862. (Submitted on March 16, 2015, by James King of San Miguel, California.)
4. The Coolie - Ken Fox Statue. ""The Chinese Coolie" is a 22-ft. tall sculpture of an old man in a conical hat pushing a wheelbarrow. The statue was created by Auburn dentist Kenneth H. Fox in 1972, along with his other Great Statues of Auburn. It stood for decades outside his dental practice on the other side of I-80 before being moved to the old train station site and Chamber of Commerce in 1989..." (Submitted on March 16, 2015, by James King of San Miguel, California.)
Categories. • Asian Americans • Man-Made Features • Railroads & Streetcars •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on March 16, 2015, by James King of San Miguel, California. This page has been viewed 255 times since then and 18 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on March 16, 2015, by James King of San Miguel, California. • Syd Whittle was the editor who published this page.