A History Buried - the Chinese Massacre of 1871
October 25, 2021 9:49 PM   Subscribe

The Chinese Massacre in Los Angeles was one of the worst atrocities to happen in the city. In the end, as a result of an accidental shooting, five hundred local white men killed 19 Chinese men and boys. Only a plaque currently memorializes the terrible event that occurred. Although some men stood trial, their charges were overturned and they were never retried.

Blood on Gold Mountain is a historical fiction podcast based on the events that led up to the 1871 massacre.

On the 150th anniversary of the event, local groups came together to commemorate, recover, and reflect on a tragic, terrible history that has mostly been buried and forgotten. Los Angeles' Civic Memory Working Group has been working with the 1871 Steering Committee on possible recommendations for a proper memorial, alongside other "Past Due" commemorations. (Previously and adjacent.)
posted by toastyk (8 comments total) 29 users marked this as a favorite
Thank you for this collection. I'm just now reading Prairie Lotus to my kids (it's Little House on the Prairie but anti-racist), where this massacre is huge in the background, having killed the protagonist's mother. Hadn't made the year calculation to see the anniversary, much less the date.

That the mob killed a full tenth of the city's Chinese population is stunning in how it must have affected the community.
posted by away for regrooving at 10:25 PM on October 25, 2021 [5 favorites]

This was covered by The History Guy on YouTube last Sept. 17 2018. I had no idea of this violent indecent until I watched the video.
posted by Metacircular at 10:44 PM on October 25, 2021

Important. Thank you for sharing.
posted by rrrrrrrrrt at 12:26 AM on October 26, 2021

Also covered recently by Lazlo Montgomery in the China History Podcast
posted by WhackyparseThis at 6:23 AM on October 26, 2021 [1 favorite]

Just a note, the Past Due recommendations (PDF link) are well worth digging into as well, for a deep dive on what we should be commemorating and remembering in Los Angeles, and where we have traditionally fallen short.
posted by toastyk at 9:42 AM on October 26, 2021 [2 favorites]

This worries me: "Revenge takes time .... But arrives" This is not the only atrocities committed against the Chinese population,Here and everywhere and many of those occurring in their own land. Hope for the best.
posted by CRESTA at 12:11 PM on October 27, 2021

The term "race riot" is used to evoke the spectre of POC, specifically Black and Latine people, destroying cities and property. What is not commonly taught in history class is that historically white people have been the race that's rioting--mobs of white people invading communities of color to drive out and kill inhabitants (and then often looting any property that's left). The Chinese Massacre, Tulsa, the Red Summer, and more, the history of race mobs is one of oppressors further perpetuating oppression. The Chinese Massacre was not an aberration.
posted by schroedinger at 3:50 PM on October 27, 2021 [1 favorite]

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