Call for historic photographs of Salinas Chinatown

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The Republic Cafe awaits its transformation into the Salinas Chinatown Museum & Cultural Center

I’m a member of A.C.E. (Asian Cultural Experience) project in Salinas. With CSUMB we are working on renovation of the old Republic Cafe in Salinas’ Chinatown, transforming it into the Salinas Chinatown Asian Museum and Cultural Center. CSUMB recently received grants to fund development of programs for the future Salinas Chinatown Museum & Cultural Center: a $10,000 CAL Humanities Council grant to fund a website (which will contain interviews, historical information, and photographs) and development of an oral history walking tour, and a $40,000 planning grant from the National Endowment for the Humanties. A.C.E. has also received a Neighborhood Grant from the Community Foundation for Monterey County to scan and archive historic photos. It’s great to receive support from these institutions!


And now we have an important project: Anyone, anywhere who has photos from around the Salinas Chinatown area, Soledad St, California St, Lake St, from the late 1800- 1980s is invited to share them for this project. You will retain copyrights and will be fully credited. Photographs will be used to educate the public about the history of Chinatown and to help raise funds for the Museum. This is a chance to honor our ancestors, families, and friends, to remember the diverse history of Salinas and Salinas Chinatown — and to contribute to the future of Salinas. If interested, please contact me, Jean Vengua, by responding in the comments section of this website. Thanks!

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Wellington Lee leads a group on an oral history of Salinas Chinatown, near the new Tom O. Wong street sign.

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A discussion of Salinas Chinatown and the future of the Chinatown Museum & Cultural Center

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A visitor checks out the old kitchen area of the Republic Cafe.

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Visitors walking through the gutted two-story building.

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Inside the Republic Cafe, looking out.

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Photographs (print copies) of Chinatown residents enjoying a meal in the Republic Cafe.

This post is part of the thread: Salinas Chinatown Museum Project – an ongoing story on this site. View the thread timeline for more context on this post.