They toiled through back-breaking labor during both frigid winters and blazing summers. Hundreds died from explosions, landslides, accidents and disease. And even though they made major contributions to the construction of the Transcontinental Railroad , these 15, to 20, Chinese immigrants have been largely ignored by history. Looking back, historians say, the Chinese, who began arriving in the United States in significant numbers during the California Gold Rush of , were deemed too weak for the dangerous, strenuous job of building the railroad east from California. Hilton Obenzinger, associate director of the Chinese Railroad Workers in North America Project at Stanford University, says that Central Pacific Railroad director Charles Crocker recommended hiring Chinese workers after a job ad resulted in only a few hundred responses from white laborers. Chinese workers building a cut and a bank at Sailor's Spur in the Sierra foothills for the Central Pacific Railroad in California,
Chinese immigration and the Transcontinental railroad
'The Chinese Helped Build America'
Not Sure? How Do I? Welcome back. Go to your forms. By the time the Civil War began, the westward expansion movement was in full swing.
Building the Transcontinental Railroad: How 20,000 Chinese Immigrants Made It Happen
In proclaiming May as Asian Pacific American Heritage Month, President Obama highlighted the contributions of Chinese railroad workers in helping complete the most important construction project in mid th century America. The completed line physically and symbolically linked the nation. This May is the th anniversary of that epic moment and the Department of Labor will install a plaque honoring the Chinese workers in its Hall of Fame. This recognition from the highest levels of our government is most welcome and long over-due.
JOHN T. House of Representatives, Thursday, April 29, Speaker, today I rise to honor the Chinese-American community and pay tribute to its ancestors' contribution to the building of the American transcontinental railroad. On May 8th, the Colfax Area Historical Society in my Congressional District will place a monument along Highway at Cape Horn, near Colfax, California to recognize the efforts of the Chinese in laying the tracks that linked the east and west coasts for the first time.