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A museum with a mission

2021/12/21 22:30

One of the oldest Chinatowns in the United States, located in Portland, Oregon, has two cultural gems that are not widely known to people outside the city. They are the Lan Su Chinese Garden, which was unveiled in September 2000 and the Portland Chinatown Museum, which opened in December 2018. The garden is an urban oasis based on a 2,000-year-old Chinese tradition that blends art, architecture, design and nature in perfect harmony. The museum was set up to tell the stories of Oregon's Chinese Americans, whose history dates back to the mid-1800s, when immigrants from China began coming to America's northwest to work in gold mines, canneries and on the most dangerous part of the Transcontinental Railroad. Despite racial discrimination and laws restricting Chinese immigration, they persevered and contributed greatly to American society. In light of the recent wave of anti-Asian violence in the U.S., the founders of the museum believe it is ever more important for people to learn about this often-overlooked part of American history. For Taiwanese people visiting Portland, a visit to the garden and museum may be highlights of their trip. They might also be surprised to learn that not only is Portland a sister city of Taiwan's Kaohsiung city, there is also a Taiwan contribution to this Chinatown.

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