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During the early 1880s in the American northwest many Chinese immigrants encountered hardships due to the overt racism and drastic cultural differences of the white majority Due to a seemingly perpetual drought hunger poverty and dictatorial rule by local soldiers in northern China many Chinese citizens left their homes in the early 1880s for the hope of gaining money in California and the American northwest Most of these immigrants however did not escape the racist taunts of some whites already living in the area and none of the immigrants were free from the nativist sentiment which resulted in the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882 The History of Chinese Immigration Most Chinese immigrants came to San Francisco where they developed a Chinese American community and made an effort to join the citys political and cultural life In the 1850s they participated in festivities celebrating Californias admission into the Union and in the Fourth of July Parade Chinese Americans also preserved their own cultural traditions They celebrated the lunar New Year in the traditional way In 1852 the first performance of Cantonese opera was held and the first Chinese theatre building completed Two Chinese-language newspapers began publishing Associations The Kong Chow Association was the first Chinese organization established In 1849 Norman As-sing a prominent merchant became the leader of the Chew Yick Association and served as an interpreter Tong K Achick arrived in 1851 and founded the Yeong Wo Association Later he and As-sing were rivals for leadership of the Chinese American community in San Francisco Immigration A series of wars rebellions civil disorders floods famines and droughts made earning a livelihood in China difficult When China tried
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