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The Forbidden City: Canadiana Series - Season 2

Maple Leaf This item is only available for Canadian orders.
This title is a part of the series Canadiana Series - Season 2

Catalogue Number:  UPP011
Producer:  The Canadiana Project Inc.
Producing Agencies:  The Canadiana Project Inc.
Subject:  Canadian History, Canadian Social Studies, History, Social Studies
Language:  English
Grade Level:  3 - 5, 6 - 8, 9 - 12
Country Of Origin:  Canada
Copyright Year:  2018
Running Time:  17:02
Closed Captions:  Yes

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North America's second oldest Chinatown in Victoria, BC, was once considered a "Forbidden City" by citizens of European descent. Fan Tan Alley, the narrowest street in Canada, was famous for its opium dens and gambling houses. Chinese immigration is woven into our history; Chinese labourers built the fort at Nootka Sound in 1788, and Chinese tradespeople, merchants and labourers came by the thousands during the Fraser Canyon gold rush in 1858 establishing Victoria’s Chinatown. 

When British Columbia joined confederation in 1871, bigoted legislation banned Chinese Canadians from working in professions and revoked their voting rights. Chinese immigrants were vital in building the transcontinental railway, but on its completion in 1885 a racist head tax was enacted to discourage further Chinese immigration. The Chinese Exclusion Act of 1923 ended Chinese immigration until the law was overturned in 1947. In 1981 the beautiful Gate of Harmonious Interest was built to celebrate Canada’s cultural mosaic at the entrance to what is now a thriving district and the Forbidden City is a thing of the past.

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