A Lecture and Presentation
   on the History
   of Newark Chinatown
   as researched by Yoland Skeete



     
   Sumei Multidisciplinary Arts Center
   19 Liberty Street (at Lafayette Street),
   Newark, NJ 07102
   973 643.7883 | www.sumei.org
Timeline
1855 First Chinese Laundry appears in downtown Newark.
1871 First Chinese New Year celebrated in Belleville, New Jersey.
1875 Census counts 23 Chinese in Essex County.
1877 Anti Chinese violence flares in Chico, California.
1882 Chinese leave Belleville laundry & some move to Newark. Thus begins Newark Chinatown.
1882 Chinese Exclusion Act forbids entrance of Chinese laborers into US for 6 years.
1902 Chinese Exclusion Act extended indefinitely.
1910 Mulberry Arcade completed specifically as housing & businesses for Chinese population.
1920-1930 Prohibition.
1927 The clash between Chinese & American culture takes its toll.
1933 11 businesses & 700 families leave Newark Chinatown for NYC & the suburbs.
1941 Attempt to revive Newark Chinatown fails.
1958 Mulberry Arcade destroyed
1967 Newark Riots.
2001 Only 2 Chinese families still live in Newark Chinatown.

Newark, NJ – 1901
Newark’s oldest and largest Grocery Store and Chinese Pharmaceutical Company carrying approximately 600 traditional Chinese herbs was located at 209 Mulberry Street. It was originally located on Houston Street in 1885. It supplied restaurants and families in the area thru the 1960s, although it changed owners several times.

Duo-tong Family

Newark, NJ – 1910
Anna Seymour, widow of ex-Mayor James Seymour, together with the family of Stephen Crane, civil war author, built the Mulberry Chinatown Arcade, housing merchants and families.

1901 racial population map of Newark commissioned by Presbyterian Church in Newark, New Jersey.

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Newark, NJ – 1922
3,000 Chinese lived in Newark Chinatown. Raids on Chinese community under the pretext of finding illegal immigrants and drugs began to drive the Chinese community out of Chinatown.

Newark, NJ – 1933
1,000 people left in Chinatown. Newark Chinese continued to be subjects of constant harassment. 700 families leave because of continual raids on the community by police and FBI agents.

Circa 1930s. Federal Officers and detectives arresting a Chinese man through a hole they had chopped with axes, in a fence in the Mulberry Arcade. During one year there had been 42 of these raids on the Chinese community.

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Newark, NJ – 2001
Two Chinese families still live in Newark Chinatown whose ancestors date back to the 1870’s. They and the recent occupants of old Chinatown will be displaced in the Spring of 2002 by an arena built to accommodate the New Jersey Nets.

Newark, NJ – 2004
One Chinese family still lives in Newark Chinatown whose ancestors date back to the 1870’s. Occupants of old Chinatown may be displaced by an arena built to accommodate the New Jersey Sports Teams.