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Immigration Episodes

19TH Century 20TH Century Asian-American History Immigration

Chinese Grocery Stores in the Mississippi Delta

May 30, 2022

During Reconstruction, cotton planters in the Mississippi Delta recruited Chinese laborers to work on their plantations, to replace the emancipated slaves who had previously done the hard labor. However, the Chinese workers …

Guest: Larissa Lam
19TH Century 20TH Century Asian-American History Immigration

The US-Born Japanese Americans (Nisei) who Migrated to Japan

May 16, 2022

In the decades before World War II, 50,000 of the US-born children of Japanese immigrants (a quarter of their total population) migrated from the United States to the Japanese Empire. Although these second generation Japanes…

Guest: Michael Jin
20TH Century Asian-American History Food & Drink History Immigration

Thai Americans & the Rise of Thai Food in the United States

May 9, 2022

There are around 300,000 Thai Americans but almost 5,000 Thai restaurants in the United States. To understand how Thai restaurants became so ubiquitous in the US, we dive into the history of how Thai cuisine arrived in the U…

20TH Century Asian-American History Biographical History Immigration Women's History

Mary Paik Lee

May 2, 2022

Mary Paik Lee (Paik Kuang Sun) was born in the Korean Empire on August 17, 1900, and was baptized by American Presbyterian minister Dr. Samuel Austin Moffett, one of the first American Presbyterian missionaries to come to Ko…

Guest: Jane Hong
20TH Century Asian-American History Biographical History Immigration Women's History

Mabel Ping-Hua Lee

Dec. 13, 2021

Mabel Ping-Hua Lee was born in China in 1896 but lived most of her life in the United States, where, due to the Chinese Exclusion Act, she had no path to naturalization until the law changed in 1943. Even though it would not…

20TH Century Carceral History Immigration Latino/a History Post-WW2 History Riots

Migrant Incarceration and the 1985 El Centro Hunger Strike

July 19, 2021

In 1945, United States immigration officials opened the El Centro Immigration Detention Camp in El Centro, California, to be an administrative holding center for unauthorized Mexican migrants, many of whom had been working o…

Guest: Jessica Ordaz