1915 - 1925 Chinese American Girl's Vest

Description (Brief)
One of the Lee daughters wore this casual Chinese-style outfit on special occasions, for none of the children wore Chinese dress for every day wear. The trouser band or fu tau , translated as the “head of the trousers,” was folded over and secured with a belt or cord and covered by the vest.
Lee B. Lok, his wife Ng Shee, and their seven children lived above the Quong Yuen Shing & Co. store in New York City's Chinatown. Though the children wore Western clothes and participated in the local Scout troop and other clubs, their parents required them to attend Chinese school each day, from 4-7 PM.
Currently not on view
Object Name
vest, girl's
Object Type
Main Dress
date made
ca 1920
Physical Description
fabric (overall material)
overall: 41 cm x 57 cm; 16 5/32 in x 22 7/16 in
place made
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
Chinese American
Family & Social Life
Cultures & Communities
Clothing & Accessories
Chinese American
See more items in
Home and Community Life: Costume
Chinese American
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
Credit Line
Gift of James Edgar Mead and Virginia Lee Mead
Publication title
Lee Chinese -American Family Papers, ca. 1915-1970
Publication author
Mead, Virginia Lee
Publication URL
Publication title
Photograph, Lee family portrait
Publication author
Mead, Virginia Lee
Publication URL

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