On the path to reconciliation

Sandra Hayes-Gardiner’s (l.) memoir recounts her upbringing in a racially divided town in Manitoba and her journey from ignorance to understanding the impact of systemic racism.” FULL STORY

CCHSBC celebrates 10th anniversary

September 15th, 2014

The Chinese Canadian Historical Society of BC, will be sponsoring the re-launch of Eating Stories, a Chinese Canadian and Aboriginal Potluck (Chinese Canadian Historical Society of BC, 2007, 2014) and the launch of Lily Chow’s Blood and Sweat over the Railroad Tracks (Chinese Canadian Historical Society of BC, 2014) at the Vancouver Public Library next month. The Event will be on Monday, October 6th, 7:00pm in the VPL’s Alma Van Dusen & Peter Kaye Rooms, Lower Level, 350 West Georgia Street. This Book Launch is one of the many planned events to celebrate CCHS’s Tenth Anniversary.

Blood and Sweat over the Railway Tracks examines the employment of thousands of Chinese labourers for construction of the CPR railway linking this country from coast to coast. The book looks at why the railway was built and how the Chinese labourers were recruited and transported from Guangdong to the various construction sites in British Columbia. Chow illustrates the difficult and dangerous tasks that the Chinese labourers had to perform and the challenges, hardship, struggle, and endurance of these workers. Despite the hard labour these men displayed an excellent work ethic, and were diligent and dependable people. Included are some poems and verses by a couple of Chinese labourers and their family members to show their anguish, anxiety, and longing.

Eating Stories: A Chinese Canadian & Aboriginal Potluck follows the success of the first workshop and the resulting book publication, Finding Memories, Tracing Routes, sponsored by the CCHSBC.  While the first workshop had eight participants, the second workshop nearly tripled in size as a second writing workshop with the theme of Food and Family.  Twenty-three participants of Chinese Canadian or Aboriginal backgrounds researched, discussed, and wrote their memories of family gatherings, home cooking, restaurant outings, and other stories. Ultimately, the book is about the power of food to bring families and communities together. In addition to the stories, there are 37 recipes and over 170 photographs and images. Historian Jean Barman wrote a new forward to the second edition.

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