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Chinese Historical Society of America

Chinese Historical Society Of America Museum Celebrates 10-Years in famed Julia Morgan Building in San Francisco’s Chinatow

Chinese Historical Society of America

Chinese Historical Society Of America Museum Celebrates 10-Years in famed Julia Morgan Building in San Francisco’s Chinatow

All day celebration, Saturday, November 12: 11am-4pm

Celebration coincides with birthday of iconic Chinese leader Sun Yat-sen

7 November 2011 – San Francisco, CA: Ten years ago, The Chinese Historical Society of America ( opened a Museum in the landmark Julia Morgan-designed Chinatown YWCA Building at 965 Clay Street in San Francisco. On Saturday, November 12, 2011, the Chinese Historical Society invites the community for a FREE day-long 10th Anniversary Celebration from 11am to 4pm, featuring lion dancing, exhibits, music, refreshments, and talks on Chinese American art, culture, and history. In addition, a special performance will commemorate the birthday of iconic Chinese leader Sun Yat-sen, celebrated that same day, November 12. To RSVP to these activities, please call (415) 391-1188, x101 or

“Today, our stories are more important than ever. Our 10th Anniversary is a huge milestone to the community—celebrating a decade in our beautiful museum and a half century that CHSA has existed,” CHSA Executive Director Sue Lee said. “From our humble beginnings as a historical society with invaluable collections, we are proud to have built up to a museum and learning institution. We look forward to many more years of sharing our remarkable stories.”

For the last five decades, CHSA has brought the largely untold stories of the Chinese American experience to the American historical narrative. From the beginnings of Chinese immigration in the 19th century to recent years when political & public achievement has reached unprecedented heights, CHSA is committed to honoring and growing this vibrant community with exhibits, theater performances, public programs, and publications.

Entertainment Line-up for November 12 includes:
11am: Opening Ceremony Lion Dance by Chung Ngai Dance Troupe
12 noon: Chinatown Miniatures Presentation by Artist Frank Wong
1pm: History Alive! Performance “Sun Yat-sen & The Three People’s Principles” by Artist-in-Residence Charlie Chin
2pm: A Musical Tribute to CHSA Museum by Pianist Jon Jang & Saxophonist Francis Wong of Asian Improv aRts
3pm — “Finding Jake Lee: The Paintings at Kan’s” Talk by CHSA Executive Director Sue Lee about the Museum’s popular exhibition

The artists and performers will be available for audience discussion. Through November and December 2011, Museum admission is FREE, courtesy of PG&E.

Founded in 1963, CHSA is the oldest and largest organization in the country dedicated to the documentation, study, and presentation of Chinese American history. Through exhibitions, publications, and educational and public programs, CHSA promotes the contributions and legacy of Chinese America. In 2001, CHSA relocated to the historic YWCA building, designed in 1932 by prolific and innovative architect Julia Morgan. The Chinese Historical Society of America Museum is located at 965 Clay Street, San Francisco, CA 94108. For information contact (415) 391-1188 or or go online to


Chung Ngai Dance Troupe Established in 1966, Chung Ngai Dance Troupe is a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting and preserving Chinese culture in the U.S. through performing arts, where it is now one of the premier lion dance troupes. Since the 1970’s, Chung Ngai has been a staple unit of the San Francisco Chinese New Year Parade.

Frank Wong Born and raised in San Francisco’s Chinatown, Frank Wong attended Galileo High School and became a set designer for numerous movies and plays in Hollywood, including Magnum PI. He also spent much of his time working in Hawaii before returning to Chinatown. Frank Wong’s miniature dioramas span an array of different Chinatown scenes, including an herb shop, a holiday scene, shoeshine station, and a single room occupancy hotel.

Charlie Chin in “Sun Yat-sen & the Three People’s Principles” CHSA Artist-in-Residence Charlie Chin is a renowned writer, historian and performer. This museum theater piece features the unique story of Dr. Sun’s life in America before returning as the first provisional President of the Republic of China. This program illuminates the link between the modern history of China and the history of Chinese America. It also explores the linkage between democratic ideas pursued in the post-American Civil War era and the aspirations of Chinese, both in China and in America. The program also marks the Centennial of the 1911 Chinese Revolution, a key moment shared by Chinese throughout the global diaspora.

Asian Improv aRts’ (AIR) is a non-profit multidisciplinary arts presenter that produces arts and cultural events for 24 years in the San Francisco Bay Area. Community based and major venues include: Yerba Buena Center for the Arts (with Dohee Lee’s FLUX), Great American Music Hall (with SF Jazz), and Zellerbach Playhouse (Cal Performances) as well as various venues outside the Bay Area including the Museum of Contemporary Arts (Chicago), Flynn Center (Vermont), Library of Congress (Washington DC) and Banlieues Bleus Festival (Paris, France). AIR pursues a strategy of collaboration between artists, community resources and mainstream institutions to create cultural and educational programming that brings together diverse sectors across generational, cultural and social experiences.

“Finding Jake Lee: The Paintings at Kan’s” Exhibit Artist Jake Lee (1911–1991) is emerging as the visual chronicler of the Chinese American past. Lee was born in Guangzhou, China and grew up in Monterey, California. He studied at San Jose State College and Otis Art Institute and had a prolific career as a commercial artist and an art teacher. In 1959, Johnny Kan, owner of the landmark Kan’s Restaurant in Chinatown, commissioned a series of 12 watercolor paintings by Lee, which hung for many years in Kan’s private Gum Shan (“Gold Mountain”) dining room. CHSA recently recovered eight of the paintings, which are now on display in the “Finding Jake Lee: The Paintings at Kan’s” exhibit.