2000 - 2012

2012 Update

2012 is a year of milestones for this project. Hosting the 5th WCILCOS International Conference of Institutes and Libraries for Chinese Overseas Studies on “Chinese through the Americas” May 16-19 highlighted the Asian Library’s continual efforts to advance knowledge and research about the history of trans-Pacific migration between Asia and Pacific Canada.  Amongst the many projects related to the research and archiving of Chinese-Canadians, the following are conducted within the framework of www.hclmbc.org:

New additions to the Image Gallery

  • Alex Chan donated two sets of telegraphic records sent and received by the Vancouver Office of the Republic of China in 1934 and 1939 respectively. The detailed record books documented typical activities of the consulate office in the 1930’s which in turn tell untold stories of Chinese Canadians in the difficult time.
  • About 600 images of the Ing Suey Sun Tong Association archives uncovered from a safe kept in the club house on East Pender Street, Vancouver have been added. They include hand-written letters with consumer prices in China during wartime and an account book on supporting Ing members going back to China. We also took pictures of the dormitory in the attic of the building which newcomers from the Ing clan called home in the early 1900’s.

Two major family collections received by the Asian Library

  • Henry Lok-tin Lee’s collection comprises of Chinese textbooks, printed materials on Chinese music and herbal medicine, literature and history. As a major player in the community and an officially-commissioned representative of the ROC government in Vancouver, his correspondences and photographs with the Taiwan government officials are most valuable in illustrating how China politics affected the lives of Chinese-Canadians  and vice versa.
  • Ron Bick Lee’s family donated a total of 24 boxes of family archives to the Asian Library between 2007 and 2008. The papers are invaluable resources for understanding Ron Bick Lee’s personal history as he became a prominent Chinese Canadian businessman and community leader. They also provide a uniquely comprehensive overview of the lives of Chinese Canadians from the beginning of the 20th century.

Head Tax databases

The database of matched villages and towns in Taishan and Zhongshan completed by the Asian Library is linked here. The mapping of geographic names recorded in the head tax database was launched in fall, 2008. It took 20 rounds of community-based meetings with Taishanese / Zhongshanese-speaking participants to match the locale-of-origin reported by 90% of immigrants from these two counties. Part of the findings can be found in "Where Did the Immigrants Actually Come From?" exhibit.

Rudy Chiang, a community researcher took up the mapping of Xinhui (Sun Woy) after attending the Asian Library’s “Workshop on the Taishan and Zhongshan Immigrants in North America” in May 2010. He had worked on about 50% of the list. Check out Rudy's database here and powerpoint presentation here.

For more information regarding this project, please refer to its brochure.

Digitization of 821 issues of Guangdong clan association publication

The project was completed in 2009 by the Utah Genealogy Society at the Asian Library where the materials are housed. Searches by title can be made here.

Lilly Li served as the Chinese Canadian History Librarian at UBC from 2010-2011. After she went back to Texas, USA she had developed three lists of 597 organizations with well-researched descriptions, 109 geographical names and 205 personal names. Lilly’s volunteer work will be of tremendous help to researchers and students who need a handy reference tool on Chinese Canadians. As such, the value of the HCLMBC subject headings is also significantly enhanced.

Please also visit many new links added under “Related Materials”.

How did www.hclmbc.org start in 2000?

People of Chinese origin have settled in British Columbia, Canada, s ince the beginning of non-aboriginal settlement. Many of these people have left behind Chinese language manuscripts, newspapers, correspondences, genealogical and family records, business transaction records, association records, certificates, receipts, textbooks, photographs with captions in Chinese, catalogues and other documents.

In response to the growing interest of researchers and the community in general, Asian Library, Centre for Chinese Research, UBC and David Lam Centre, SFU collaborated to develop the Web page which comprises a database of records of archival materials, virtual exhibition of photo collections, images, links to related materials and listings of organizations. We offer a comprehensive inventory of the materials, searchable on the Web by keywords in Chinese, English and Pinyin and advice on options for preservation so that information is not lost with the memory of those involved or decay of materials.

Since the inception of the project in 2000, we have documented over 13,000 records and uploaded more than 6 00 images of archival materials contributed by 1 9 resource centres, 9 pioneer families and numerous individuals. With these achievements, known sources that are interested in participation were all covered and the core collection of the database completed. The focus is now on digitisation of major collections by stages.

To encourage and facilitate on-line inputting by archivists and managers of collections and researchers located outside the Lower Mainland of British Columbia, we offer a template worksheet that is downloadable from the Web. Interested parties who wish to contribute records and images may do so with the materials in their own hands. Editing and database management is administered by the project managers at the University of British Columbia and Simon Fraser University.

Search by keyword is again fine-tuned. With ECDict incorporated in the index file, searches by vernaculars are matched with the pinyin strings and vice versa automatically, thus improving the hit rate of relevant records.

The current inventory is the first iteration of an on-going effort and hopefully, partnership with more pioneer families, clan and community associations, international archives and resource centres with pertinent collections will be forged. The Asian Library will continue to promote the project and share the resources with researchers and students beyond Canada.

Introduction in Chinese 加華文獻聚珍



影像圖庫 - 新增圖像

  • 陳榮祖先生再次捐出兩冊民國政府駐溫哥華外交部於1934 及1939時收發的電報紀錄。
  • 約600張伍胥山公所文獻圖像收入影像圖庫, 其中包括談及戰時中國物價飛漲的書信及旋唐助銀紀錄。我們亦拍下公所閣樓的照片, 此處在二十世紀初為新抵埠華僑的宿舍。


  • 李樂天所藏的書文、圖片及有關與國民黨政府交往的文件。
  • 李日如家族贈送的二十四箱關於其商業、社區及個人歷史的文獻。


此辦證項目始於二零零八年秋, 我們通過多次舉辦台山及中山地名工作坊,在通曉台山及中山方言的人士協助下,再配合當年地圖之地名,至今已成功核實了在加拿大人頭稅記錄中約百分之九十來自台山及中山的華僑的來源地, 部份研究成果見「華人移民根在何處?」展覽。社區研究員蔣汶德先生正在處理來自新會的紀錄, 並於2012年初發表報告(參考演講ppt.數據庫)。 如欲瞭解更多詳情,請參閱本項目的宣傳冊




李玉女士於2010-2011擔任卑詩大學圖書館加華歷史圖書館主任一職。離任回美國德州後,一直義務為我們開發了載有597個機構名稱、109地名及205個人名的名單。所載錄的有關資料十分詳盡,對研究加拿大華人歷史及現狀幫助甚大, 也因此增加了本項目主題詞表的價值。




華人移民海外已成世界趨勢。追溯 加拿大 卑 詩 省華人早期歷史 ,其實早於十九世紀中葉開始 。 一百五十多年來,世代相傳,先僑留下了大量珍貴的中文文獻,其中包括家書、商業檔案、團體資訊、中文課本、捐獻單據、家譜、各類書信、身份證明、文章、中文剪報、人名錄、學校活動紀錄、債券、具中文說明的圖片、收據、通告及廣告等 。

以上部份文獻已經整理及羅列於本省各博物館及文物資料庫內,卻至今未曾提供一個公開的目錄。此外,相信不少家族和團體仍保存各類重要的文獻資料 。

卑詩大學亞洲圖書館因應各方面的研究需要,與中國研究中心及西門菲沙大學林思齊國際交流中心於二零零零年春開始建立一個網上加拿大華人文獻資料庫,將有關本省華人歷史的中文資料組織和收集在一個專題網頁上 。成立以來, 資料庫已收有超過 13,000 筆來自本省九個歷史悠久的家庭、眾多獨立收藏人仕及十九個文物中心的文獻和六百多幀圖像,可以說基本上完成了最初計劃的規模。網上檢索可用中文、漢詞拼音或英文關鍵詞。為了方便身在卑詩省低陸平原以外的人士就地分析和輸入文獻資料,我們在網上放置了工作表。有意參與者請聯絡卑詩大學袁家瑜或鄒崇樂女士。同時希望各界人士支持,將資料庫介紹給可能有所收藏的家庭和社團,或協助翻譯文件,為保存本省華人歷史鮮為人知的一部份而努力 。


Contact 聯絡:

Ms. Eleanor Yuen, Head
Asian Library, University of British Columbia
卑詩大學亞洲圖書館管長 袁家瑜女士
Tel: 604-822-5905
Email: eleanor.yuen@ubc.ca

Ms. Phoebe Chow, Project Coordinator
Asian Library, University of British Columbia
卑詩大學亞洲圖書館助理、加華文獻聚珍統籌 鄒崇樂女士
Tel: 604-822- 2427
Email: phoebe.chow@ubc.ca

Dr. Jan Walls, Professor Emeritus
Simon Fraser University
西門菲沙大學榮退教授 王健教授
Tel: 604-731-7855
Email: jwalls@sfu.ca

Acknowledgement 鳴謝
The commitment and support of the following organizations and individuals is instrumental in the development of the Historical Chinese Language Materials in British Columbia Database.



Team Members

  • Eleanor Yuen, Head, Asian Library, UBC
  • Jan Walls, Professor Emeritus, SFU
  • Diana Lary, Professor Emerita, UBC
  • C.F. Lee
  • Edgar Wickberg, Professor Emeritus, UBC
  • Jens Happe
  • Yim Tse
  • Phoebe Chow, Database Coordinator
  • Raymond Kam, Technical Consultant

Anonymous Donor