Marion County

Marion County Chinese

China Dam. Marion County.
China Dam, often called Niagara Dam, was on the North Santiam River between Mill City and the community of Detroit. The dam itself, never fully realized, was built entirely by non-Chinese labor. The erroneous name of China Dam was applied because of the detailed stonework which resembled the craftsmanship of Chinese stone masons. Reference: Dawson 1970: 349, 351-357.

Hop Lee’s Burial Site. Marion County.

Hop Lee, owner of Hop Lee laundry in Salem, died in 1925. He was interred on his property in Keizer near the fence of a local cemetery. A subsequent survey of the land revealed that he was actually buried within the cemetery. His resting place is Row F, Lot 17, Claggett Cemetery. Reference: “History” 2003.

Salem Chinatown. Marion County.

Salem Chinatown consisted of residences and businesses scattered throughout a six block area. Court St NE was the northern boundary with Trade Street SE being the southern extent. The eastern border was High Street NE and Commercial Street SE in the west. During the hey-day of Salem Chinatown, 1870's to the 1920's, its center shifted within the area. Reference: Mersinger 2006. Photo.

Salem Chinatown Businesses. Marion County.

Between the 1890's to the 1920s', businesses within Salem Chinatown included:

Reference: “Salem’s Historic Chinese Businesses.” 2006.
Salem Chinese Mission School. Marion County.
 Salem Chinese Mission School was part of the First Baptist Church of Salem located at the corner of Marion and Liberty Streets. The school began operation in 1877 and its enrollment did not exceed 40 students at any one time. Jeung Gwoon Jeu was the city missionary. The school was discontinued in 1881. Reference: Mersinger. 2006; Miller 2009.

Santiam Canal. Marion County.
Santiam Canal begins southeast of Lebanon at the Santiam River. Flowing in a northwestward direction, it provides water to the city of Lebanon and Albany as well as nearby agriculture, eventually joining the Willamette River. The canal was built using Chinese labor in the early 1870's. Reference: McConnell 1979: 54.

“History.” 2003. Claggett Cemetery. Accessed December 9, 2010.

“Salem’s Historic Chinese Businesses.” 2006. Salem Online History. Accessed November 10, 2010.

Dawson, Maynard C. 1970. “Letter to the Editor: “Niagara” and “China Dam”.” Oregon Historical Quarterly, December: 349-357.

McConnell, Gregory. 1979. “An Historical Geography of the Chinese in Oregon.” University of Oregon Masters thesis.

Mersinger, Monica. 2006. “Salem’s Chinese Americans.” Salem Online History. Accessed November 9, 2010.

Miller, Marilee. 2009. “The Corvallis Gazette, Corvallis, Oregon.” Coos County and Oregon History. Accessed November 27, 2010.