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  #21  
Old Posted Mar 25, 2018, 3:31 AM
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Originally Posted by Andy6 View Post
I would imagine that there were relatively few Chinese women, though. Virtually every Chinese person I've seen on the Prairies in my use of historical census data was a male laundryman (maybe the odd restaurant owner in there too).
Yes, very much so. Chinese men outnumbered women by a ratio of more of 10 to 1!
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  #22  
Old Posted Mar 25, 2018, 3:33 AM
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Thanks for that nugget of minutia. I was kept up for nights wondering what the number was.
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  #23  
Old Posted Mar 25, 2018, 3:33 AM
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  #24  
Old Posted Mar 25, 2018, 3:57 AM
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Chinese were pretty much the largest group of Asian Canadians through the entire history of Asian immigration to Canada, from the late 1800s to today right?

And they were probably a majority of Asian Canadians up until the liberalization of immigration policy in the 1960s.

In the US, Chinese Americans dropped to 50% or less of Asian Americans in the early 20th century (after which Japanese became the majority of Asian Americans for a while, with the addition of a small Filipino and Korean population, which Canada lacked in any significant number until the 1960s or later), decades pretty soon after the Chinese exclusion act. However, unlike in the US, Canada's way of excluding Chinese immigrants, the head tax, did not stop a rise in Chinese population at the time, until a 1920s ban lowered the Chinese population for a few decades.

I still remember that thread in city discussions a while back about whether "Pan-Asian identity" existed in the US or Canada, and how Canada has very little Pan-Asian identity, which makes sense if Asian more or less meant majority Chinese throughout the majority of the country's history.
In the US it feels like the existence of a pan-Asian identity depends on whether the subgroups have sufficient numbers to perform certain functions. For example, in a metropolitan area like Denver which has few Asians, you tend to find South Asians, Southeast Asians and East Asians represented in groups like the Asian American Chamber of Commerce, the Asia-Pacific American Law Students Association, the Asia-Pacific American Bar Association, and in organized events on places like meetup.com. In those cases, there appears to be some sort of Pan-Asian identity.

Conversely, places like the San Francisco Bay Area tend to have large enough South Asian, Southeast Asian and East Asian populations that they have thriving subgroups, including for example the South Asian Law Students Association (separate from the Asia-Pacific Law Students Association, which is mostly East Asians). I think in places like that a Pan-Asian identity is weaker.
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  #25  
Old Posted Mar 25, 2018, 4:36 AM
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Here's some Asian populations in some smaller Lower Mainland cities.

Unfortunately, the Census lumps "Chinese and Japanese" together for small municipalities. I think these BC communities were much more Japanese though (Chinese were much more concentrated in Vancouver and Victoria).

Chinese and Japanese population, 1931:

Richmond 3,262 39.9%
Maple Ridge 1,351 27.4%
Mission 622 27.3%
Pitt Meadows 145 17.4%
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  #26  
Old Posted Mar 25, 2018, 4:39 AM
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Originally Posted by saffronleaf View Post
In the US it feels like the existence of a pan-Asian identity depends on whether the subgroups have sufficient numbers to perform certain functions. For example, in a metropolitan area like Denver which has few Asians, you tend to find South Asians, Southeast Asians and East Asians represented in groups like the Asian American Chamber of Commerce, the Asia-Pacific American Law Students Association, the Asia-Pacific American Bar Association, and in organized events on places like meetup.com. In those cases, there appears to be some sort of Pan-Asian identity.

Conversely, places like the San Francisco Bay Area tend to have large enough South Asian, Southeast Asian and East Asian populations that they have thriving subgroups, including for example the South Asian Law Students Association (separate from the Asia-Pacific Law Students Association, which is mostly East Asians). I think in places like that a Pan-Asian identity is weaker.
True, in places like the Greater Toronto and Greater Vancouver areas, there are few organizations representing "Asians" as an umbrella group as a whole, where each individual subgroup probably has its own identity groups and associations. I wonder if Pan-Asian identity exists in provinces or cities in Canada though with smaller Asian populations.

The Bay Area as you mention is probably similar, though to be fair that's the region in the US where a collective Asian American identity (that started to see themselves as Asian Americans specifically, rather than individual immigrant groups) got its beginnings in the 1960s to start with, especially with university students, like those at Berkeley. The Asian American movement at the time was responsible for coming up with "Asian American" instead of "Oriental" as a term which they felt was derogatory and reflected the attitudes of the past, and back then the movement included ideas like solidarity with other American minority groups, solidarity with the Third World and anti-colonialism, and the anti-Vietnam war movements.

I think there really wasn't as much of a university student-led equivalent of an "Asian American" movement in Canada. Even today, stateside, it appears that an Asian American identity is often heavily associated with colleges/universities, where there are Asian American sororities and fraternities, ethnic studies etc. which there are a lot fewer of in Canada.
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  #27  
Old Posted Mar 25, 2018, 4:42 AM
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Originally Posted by Docere View Post
Here's some Asian populations in some smaller Lower Mainland cities.

Unfortunately, the Census lumps "Chinese and Japanese" together for small municipalities. I think these BC communities were much more Japanese though (Chinese were much more concentrated in Vancouver and Victoria).

Chinese and Japanese population, 1931:

Richmond 3,262 39.9%
Maple Ridge 1,351 27.4%
Mission 622 27.3%
Pitt Meadows 145 17.4%
Wow, Richmond was already just about 40% Asian in 1931? From the discussion you hear about in recent years (eg. the Chinese store signs debate), you'd get the impression that it only recently became a high % Asian, kind of like Markham in Ontario (whose Asian, mostly Chinese, population rose quite a lot in the 90s, while it was mostly white, even rural prior to that).
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  #28  
Old Posted Mar 25, 2018, 4:43 AM
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Chinese population, 1931:

Vancouver 13,011 5.3%
Victoria 3,702 9.5%

Japanese population, 1931:

Vancouver 8,328 3.4%
Victoria 297 0.8%

Other Asian groups (mostly East Indian), 1931:

Vancouver 529 0.2%
Victoria 118 0.3%
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  #29  
Old Posted Mar 25, 2018, 4:50 AM
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Originally Posted by Capsicum View Post
Wow, Richmond was already just about 40% Asian in 1931? From the discussion you hear about in recent years (eg. the Chinese store signs debate), you'd get the impression that it only recently became a high % Asian, kind of like Markham in Ontario (whose Asian, mostly Chinese, population rose quite a lot in the 90s, while it was mostly white, even rural prior to that).
I know that Steveston was an old Japanese fishing community.

Obviously that broke up during WWII because of Japanese Canadian internment and relocation, and when Richmond suburbanized in the 1960s and 70s it was very white.
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  #30  
Old Posted Mar 25, 2018, 5:09 AM
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Originally Posted by Docere View Post
Chinese population, 1931:

Vancouver 13,011 5.3%
Victoria 3,702 9.5%

Japanese population, 1931:

Vancouver 8,328 3.4%
Victoria 297 0.8%

Other Asian groups (mostly East Indian), 1931:

Vancouver 529 0.2%
Victoria 118 0.3%
Vancouver and Victoria were more Chinese+Japanese, as a percentage of population than even San Francisco back then. Vancouver's 13 011 Chinese in 1931 is not too far off from San Francisco's 16 303 Chinese in 1930, considering how much larger San Francisco was back then.

Were Vancouver and San Francisco the only North American cities (not counting Honolulu, or anywhere in Hawaii) that had Asian populations in the five-digit mark in much of the 20th century?

Last edited by Capsicum; Mar 25, 2018 at 5:21 AM.
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  #31  
Old Posted Mar 25, 2018, 5:11 AM
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Originally Posted by Docere View Post
I know that Steveston was an old Japanese fishing community.

Obviously that broke up during WWII because of Japanese Canadian internment and relocation, and when Richmond suburbanized in the 1960s and 70s it was very white.
So, not much continuity between the Chinese community of Richmond today and the Chinese people living in the pre-war, pre-suburban days?

Probably that's why Markham and Richmond seem kind of alike. Both are products of 90s "ethnoburb" immigration.

Last edited by Capsicum; Mar 25, 2018 at 5:22 AM.
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  #32  
Old Posted Mar 25, 2018, 5:15 AM
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Pacific Mall, the largest "Chinese" or "Asian" mall in North America ended up getting built in Markham in the 90s. So, the fact that the largest Asian-themed mall was in a Toronto suburb not a Vancouver suburb probably reflects the shift away from BC in Asian Canadian population that had long taken place, slowly.

If it existed in Richmond, it'd at least be a bit more geographically accurate for a place named Pacific Mall.
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  #33  
Old Posted Mar 25, 2018, 5:27 AM
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So, not much continuity between the Chinese community of Richmond today and the Chinese people living in the pre-war, pre-suburban days?

Probably that's why Markham and Richmond seem kind of alike.
I don't think there's any continuity at all. Richmond's pre-WWII population was predominantly Japanese and that community was destroyed.
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  #34  
Old Posted Mar 25, 2018, 12:03 PM
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Docere, do you have any United Kingdom sources? I'm trying to figure out if any considerable number of Catholics in Newfoundland may have actually been English. Almost all of our ancestors came from two cities - Waterford, Ireland (Catholic), and Bristol, England. Bristol does have Catholic churches but I can't find any demographic data for the city for the 1600-1800s.

The Baron Baltimore was English and Catholic, and founded the first sustained English settlement here in 1621 - Ferryland, Province of Avalon. So English Catholics were involved here from the very beginning. I'm just curious if there's any way to find out what the odds are that random people from Bristol who moved here were Catholic.

Only thing I could find is a religious map of Britain from the 1720s that shows almost no Catholics in the south, and mostly Catholic in the north.
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  #35  
Old Posted Mar 25, 2018, 5:04 PM
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^ Nothing immediate comes to mind. Religion has only been tracked in Britain very recently, since 2001 I think.
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  #36  
Old Posted Mar 25, 2018, 5:17 PM
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Docere, do you have any United Kingdom sources? I'm trying to figure out if any considerable number of Catholics in Newfoundland may have actually been English. Almost all of our ancestors came from two cities - Waterford, Ireland (Catholic), and Bristol, England. Bristol does have Catholic churches but I can't find any demographic data for the city for the 1600-1800s.

The Baron Baltimore was English and Catholic, and founded the first sustained English settlement here in 1621 - Ferryland, Province of Avalon. So English Catholics were involved here from the very beginning. I'm just curious if there's any way to find out what the odds are that random people from Bristol who moved here were Catholic.

Only thing I could find is a religious map of Britain from the 1720s that shows almost no Catholics in the south, and mostly Catholic in the north.
Good question, but to say that almost all our (English) ancestors came from Bristol is incorrect. The origins were much more widespread.

However, considering that the percentage of NL Catholics roughly corresponds to the percentage of Irish descendants should provide the answer to your question.

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Of the known English immigrants who settled in Newfoundland, 80-85% originated in the southern and southwestern regions of the country. About half of these came from Wessex (with 30% from Dorset, 8% from Somerset and 9% from Hampshire). Devonshire sent about 35%; Bristol, London and Liverpool each provided approximately 2-3%. The balance came from other English origins.
http://www.heritage.nf.ca/articles/s...st-country.php
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  #37  
Old Posted Mar 25, 2018, 5:29 PM
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Here's England and Wales as a whole from 1680-1840. Catholics were pretty tiny by then (1% of the population for most of that time).

http://www.brin.ac.uk/2012/eighteent...us-statistics/

In the 19th century, the Catholic population increased because of Irish immigration and by the Famine years a majority of Catholics in Britain were of Irish origin.
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  #38  
Old Posted Mar 25, 2018, 5:51 PM
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Did Catholic English emigrate at disproportionately high rates even if their numbers back home were small?

A common theme in immigration and settlement history through the centuries, is that (often persecuted) religious minorities, like the French Huguenots, Jews from all over Europe, Syrian Christians in the Middle East, tend to emigrate much more than the religious majority and thus be over-represented on this side of the pond.
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  #39  
Old Posted Mar 25, 2018, 7:20 PM
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Other Asiatic origin, 1931:

Sydney 277 1.2%
Halifax 269 0.5%
Saint John 121 0.3%
Charlottetown 107 0.8%

(virtually all Syrian-Lebanese, but not available at municipal level. 98% of "other Asiatics" with a non-official language as MT in the Maritimes are of "Syrian and Arabic MT").
There's a bunch of information here about NS: https://archives.novascotia.ca/genea...ural-diversity

Mostly about much earlier groups but there is a page on 20th century immigration too, and some information about immigration to Industrial Cape Breton specifically. Sydney was the biggest town in that area but it was more of a cluster of complementary industrial towns (coal mines in one place, steel mill in another town nearby, port somewhere else) than a metropolitan area based around commuting patterns to one city. A mini version of the Midlands or Rhine-Ruhr. New Glasgow was like this too. Sometimes all of these areas are collectively referred to as "Northern Nova Scotia", which on average had a different economy than the south.

1931 was a different time in the Maritimes than the rest of Canada. In the 1900-1930 period most of the rest of Canada was booming while the Maritimes generally stagnated (and a lot of industry in Halifax was destroyed in 1917). During the 1930's they regained some ground while the previously booming areas suffered more greatly from the Depression.

I am not sure that this was so extreme that minority groups like this shrank but if you looked at proportions from 1871-1931 I think you'd see a different trajectory in the Maritimes. Comparatively larger-sized minority groups like this earlier on in the period compared to Ontario or Quebec and comparatively smaller near the end of the period.

I would also expect earlier information about ethnicity to be difficult to compare to the later statistics. A blurb about the 20th century:

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If you look at any map of North America, you’ll see that the continent tapers to the northeast. Nova Scotia is the last step before you need a vessel to travel further east. Now think of Nova Scotia as the narrow end of a funnel which expands west and southwest into the heart of North America. Once you do that, you can see immediately how and why this province became the doorstep into Canada and beyond.

In the days before passports and formal immigration, people coming from overseas travelled by boat and simply ‘arrived’, entering mostly through Halifax, Yarmouth or Sydney. The majority moved on, but enough stayed to make a difference.

Jewish people have been in Nova Scotia in small numbers since the earliest days. Nathan Levy and Samuel Hart, for example, were important merchants in early Halifax; their descendants later assimilated into the general population. By the 1920s, the community in Halifax was large enough to support a synagogue and resident rabbi.

Later immigrants, especially from eastern Europe, settled in Yarmouth and Sydney. The 1901 Census counted 449 Jewish people in the province. By 1921 this had quadrupled to 2,161, but the numbers have never been large. In recent years, the Glube, Pink and Gaum families have been prominent in the province’s professional and political life.

Between 1885 and 1915, hundreds of Lebanese -- then called ‘Syrians’ – settled in Nova Scotia, fleeing oppression and genocide in the Middle East. Family names such as Abbass, Laba, Joseph and Amyooney form what some now call the ‘old Lebanese,’ to differentiate them from the ‘new Lebanese’ who arrived after 1951, following relaxation of Canadian immigration regulations.
I didn't know that names like Joseph or Hart are associated with Lebanese or Jewish immigrants. In the past, a lot of family names were changed when people immigrated to Canada.
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  #40  
Old Posted Mar 25, 2018, 8:52 PM
Docere Docere is offline
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Did Catholic English emigrate at disproportionately high rates even if their numbers back home were small?

A common theme in immigration and settlement history through the centuries, is that (often persecuted) religious minorities, like the French Huguenots, Jews from all over Europe, Syrian Christians in the Middle East, tend to emigrate much more than the religious majority and thus be over-represented on this side of the pond.
Maybe, but I'm not aware of large-scale English Catholic immigration.
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