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slideshow

Kam Wah Chung

OPB | Jan. 14, 2010 9 p.m. | Updated: July 25, 2013 10:31 a.m.

In the late 1800s, thousands of Chinese miners came to Eastern Oregon in search of gold.  Among them were two men  - Ing “Doc” Hay and Lung On - who opened a store and herbal apothecary called Kam Wah Chung.  Though originally catering to their fellow Chinese, over time these two men attended to the medical needs of many, becoming highly regarded members of the community.

The discovery of gold brought thousands of Chinese to eastern Oregon in the late 1880s – including herbal doctor Ing Hay and businessman Lung On.  These two men practiced medicine and operated a general store at Kam Wah Chung & Co. in John Day for more than sixty years.  

You’ll meet people from the region who remember the two men, explore the history of the Chinese who helped build the West and visit Kam Wah Chung  –  The Golden Flower of Prosperity.

Today the recently restored building is an Oregon treasure – and a National Historic Landmark filled with thousands of herbs, artifacts and the memories of two men who called it home.

 

Resources

 

Books

Jeffrey Barlow and Christine Richardson, China Doctor of John Day

Linda Barnes, Needles Herbs Gods and Ghosts - China Healing and the West to 1848

Marie Wong, Sweet Cakes, Long Journey

 

Articles

Remedies & Mysteries, Wanted: Translation of the Wild West-era cures of Chinese herbalist “Doc” Hay

by Richard Cockle, The Sunday Oregonian, June 15, 2008.

 

Web sites

Kam Wah Chung State Heritage Site

Grant County Historical Museum

Broadcast Date: January 14, 2010

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OREGON EXPERIENCE is a co-production of Oregon Public Broadcasting and the Oregon Historical Society.