2016 Press Releases

National Archives Publishes Chinese Exclusion Act Book and Course
Press Release · Wednesday, Mar 5, 2014

Washington, DC

Washington, DC…The National Archives announced today that students and history lovers can now explore the impact of the Chinese Exclusion Act through two new learning tools. “The Chinese Exclusion Act – Researching in the National Archives” can be downloaded from iBooks [http://owl.li/TlcPs]. Find “The Chinese Exclusion Act” from National Archives and Records Administration on iTunes U [http://owl.li/TldWn].

The Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882 was the first significant law restricting immigration into the United States. Documents and records of individual case files and Certificates of Residence housed in the National Archives detail the individual stories resulting from this and subsequent legislation.

The book – available on iPad, iPhone, and Mac – weaves together primary source documents from the Immigration Service, custom houses, ports of entry, and Angel Island Immigration Station. It includes interactive features, questions for topic exploration and reflection, transcriptions for highlighting, and review activities.

“The Chinese Exclusion Act” on iTunes U is a self-paced course designed to take 21 weeks. It incorporates the companion book, articles, videos, and assignments. It challenges students to explore, discover, and research in the digitized records of the National Archives to further understand the impact of the Chinese Exclusion Act and related legislation.

These new learning tools explore stories about Chinese immigrants through primary source document analysis. These stories also reveal how the democratic rights of American-born children of these Chinese immigrants were affected by Chinese Exclusion laws. Analyzing the stories that emerge from these sources provides perspective on U.S. immigration history.

This project was made possible through a collaboration of the National Archives and Apple Distinguished Educators Cheryl Davis and Mia Morrison. Apple Distinguished Educators (ADEs) are part of a global community of education leaders recognized for doing amazing things with Apple technology in and out of the classroom. The collaboration was supported through the ADEs in Residence Program, which places selected ADEs in some of the world’s leading museums, archives, science centers, and cultural organizations to develop innovative teaching and learning resources.

In the past six months, the number of digitized records related to Chinese immigration available in the National Archives online catalog [www.archives.gov/research/catalog] has more than doubled, thanks to the research efforts of the Apple Distinguished Educators, as well as to teachers participating in the National Archives Primarily Teaching Summer Institute in Washington, DC. All are available as teaching tools on DocsTeach.org, the online tool for teaching with documents from the National Archives, [http://owl.li/ScySO]. National Archives facilities around the nation house original records related to Chinese immigration. Learn more [www.archives.gov/research/chinese-americans/guide.html]

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For press information contact the National Archives Public Affairs staff at 202-357-5300.

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