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Chinese Railroad Workers in North America Project

Chinese Railroad Workers in North America Project

Detail Laying of the Last Rail.png

Detail of "East and West shaking hands at the laying of the last rail," by Andrew J. Russell
Detail of "East and West shaking hands at the laying of the last rail," by Andrew J. Russell

Between 1865 and 1869, thousands of Chinese migrants toiled at a grueling pace and in perilous working conditions to help construct America’s first Transcontinental Railroad. The Chinese Railroad Workers in North America Project at Stanford University seeks to give a voice to the Chinese migrants whose labor on the Transcontinental Railroad helped to shape the physical and social landscape of the American West. The Project, co-directed by Professors Gordon H. Chang and Shelley Fisher Fishkin, coordinates research in North America and Asia to create an online digital archive available to all, along with books, digital visualizations, conferences, and public events.

SPICE has created four lessons for high school audiences that draw upon research and findings from the Chinese Railroad Workers in North America Project. Teachers may deliver all four modules in the order listed below, or may deliver any one lesson as a stand-alone unit.

SPICE is grateful to Monica Yeung Arima and Adrian Arima for their generosity in making the development of the lessons possible.

 

Interactive website: Chinese Railroad Workers in North America Project at Stanford University

 

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