San Jose To Apologize For 1887 Chinatown Destruction 

San Jose To Apologize For 1887 Chinatown Destruction 

San José was once home to one of the largest Chinatowns in California, arsonists burned it down in 1887 during a period of intense anti-Chinese sentiments.

With a population of over 1 million, San José is the largest U.S. city to formally apologize to the Chinese community for its treatment of their ancestors.

“An apology for grievous injustices cannot erase the past, but admission of the historic wrongdoings committed can aid us in solving the critical problems of racial discrimination facing America today,” the resolution said.

In May, the city of Antioch apologized for its mistreatment of Chinese immigrants, who built tunnels to get home from work because they were banned from walking the streets after sundown.

The apologies come amid a wave of attacks against the Asian community since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020. Other cities, specifically in the Pacific Northwest, have issued apologies in decades past.

California also apologized in 2009 to Chinese workers and Congress has apologized for the Chinese Exclusion Act, which was approved in 1882 and made Chinese residents the targets of the nation’s first law limiting immigration based on race or nationality.

San José had five Chinatowns but the largest one was built in 1872. Five years later, the city council declared it a public nuisance and unanimously approved an order to remove it to make way for a new City Hall. Before officials acted, the thriving Chinatown was burned down by arsonists, destroying hundreds of homes and businesses and displacing about 1,400 people.

»San Jose To Apologize For 1887 Chinatown Destruction «

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