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 Chinese Educational Mission
This photo of the Chinese Educational Mission courtesy of the Connecticut Historical Society.

Chinese Exclusion Act

   -- excerpts from "Joseph Roswell Hawley -- Opponent of Chinese Exclusion," by Judge Henry Cohn, Connecticut Superior Court

"In 1882, with the passage of the First Chinese Exclusion Act, the United States committed an act of discrimination against its resident Chinese population. The Act, signed by then President Chester A. Arthur on May 6, 1882, had an undistinguished and mildly official title, promising merely to implement treaty restrictions, but its practical effect was devastating.

"Joseph Hawley first became interested in the Chinese exclusion when he was out of political office in the early 1870s. He was the editor of The Hartford Courant and trying to gain election to Congress. He had a close personal friendship with his Hartford minister, Reverend Joseph Twitchell. Twitchell took on a fatherly role with a Chinese resident, Yung Wing. In 1854, Yung Wing became the first native Chinese graduate of Yale. He settled back in China, but he repeatedly returned to the United States to visit his friend in Hartford. In 1871, Yung Wing succeeded in a longtime vision -- he started an educational mission in Hartford that would bring students from China to study, as he had. Some of the Chinese students returned to China, and some settled in the United States. Even after Yung Wing's educational mission failed, Chinese scholars kept coming to Hartford, so that the whole Nook Farm community became involved in Chinese matters."

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