1895 - 1896 Chinese American Man's Gown

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Description (Brief)
Lee B. Lok (1869-1942) immigrated to San Francisco from Guangdong Province, China in 1881 and soon after moved to New York City's Chinatown where he worked in the Quong Yuen Shing & Co. store.
Lee B. Lok ordered this gown from China to wear at the 1896 arrival ceremony in New York of Li Hongzhang, emissary of the Empress Dowager of China. Soon after Lee came to America he abandoned Chinese clothes for daily use and cut his queue. However on special occasions Lee wore clothing that identified him as Chinese. This Manchu style gown splits at the back, front, and both sides to allow for easy movement on horseback – a reflection of the Manchu people’s equestrian background.
Location
Currently not on view
date made
ca 1896
maker
unknown
place made
China
worn
United States: New York, Manhattan, Chinatown
Physical Description
silk (overall material)
satin (overall material)
Measurements
overall: 72 cm x 131 cm; 28 3/8 in x 51 9/16 in
ID Number
1992.0620.24
catalog number
1992.0620.24
accession number
1992.0620
Credit Line
Gift of James Edgar Mead and Virginia Lee Mead
subject
Chinese American
Immigration
Immigrants
related event
Li Hongzhang visit to New York
See more items in
Home and Community Life: Costume
Cultures & Communities
Clothing & Accessories
Family & Social Life
Chinese American
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center

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