Chinese New Year, celebrated today, provides an opportunity to recognize the surprisingly long and rich history of the Chinese in Maine.
The history itself is fascinating, as has been the process of its discovery. Until recently, few people were aware that Chinese had been living and working in, and contributing to, communities throughout the state since the mid-19th century. And not just in cities, but also in smaller towns and rural parts of Maine, like Cherryfield, Rumford, and Skowhegan. Former MHS trustee Gary Libby got on the case, and, through tenacious research, found and documented the stories of the many Chinese people living in Maine communities.
The Maine Memory Network online exhibit, Chinese in Maine, provides a broad introduction–and a great way to mark the holiday.