Driven Out: The Chinese in the West

Chinese American Fisherman in Monterey California, 1875.

In 1882, the first federal immigration law aimed at excluding immigration to the United States targeted Chinese migrants. However, it was not the first time Chinese immigrants had faced legal and extra-legal discrimination including special taxes, prohibition from owning land, lynching, and destruction of entire communities. Author Jean Pfaelzer describes this history in an interview with NPR’s Michel Martin.

27 men indicted on felony conspiracy charges related to the 1885 expulsion of Chinese Americans in Tacoma, WA. None of them were convicted.


Use this link to learn about anti-Chinese violence in Tacoma and to explore a map documenting locations of anti-Chinese violence in the U.S.