In June 1914, Suey Sun Fong (胥山房) issued a receipt to Wu Yichou, who paid two dollars in membership enrollment fee. This receipt stub attests the existence of Wu (伍) clan association in Vancouver for over a hundred years.
Wu (or Ing, Eng, Ng) pioneers set foot in Canada as early as 1886. The largest number of them was from the Taishan County (台山縣) and Zhongshan County (中山縣) of Guangdong, China. Because of the language barriers and to cope with the difficulties caused by racial discrimination, they stayed together and supported one another. In 1920, they set up a shareholders group (百子會) to raise money from the clansmen to acquire a property at 389 East Hastings Street, which has become their living quarters, a meeting place and a contact point with families back home for the years after.
To celebrate the centennial of the association, Ing Suey Sun Tong Association of Vancouver (溫哥華伍胥山公所) will host an exhibition of Historical Artifacts of Overseas Chinese & Historical Figures of the Ing Clan (伍氏宗族華僑歷史文物和名人事跡展覽). Sponsored by the UBC Asian Library and the Chinese Stamp and Numismatic Society of Canada, the exhibition comprises two parts. The first part displays over hundred historic artifacts and documents including early records of shareholders and residents, charity donation receipts, photographs, furniture, and even a contract for the selling of a son (送子帖). The second part features the biographies of nine distinguished figures of the Wu clan.
Date: June 14 to July 14, 2014 (closed Mondays and holidays)
Time: 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Venue: Chinese Cultural Centre Museum (555 Columbia Street, Vancouver)
Free admission on Tuesdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays
Admission on Wednesdays and Thursdays ($3/adult, $2/senior or student)
At the same time, Pacific Canada Heritage Centre – Museum of Migration (PCHC-MoM) Society is calling for volunteers to act as the “Cultural Ambassadors”, who will guide visitors at the exhibition and provide the basic information relating to the history and experience of Chinese pioneers in Vancouver. Click here for more information.