Wednesday, June 23, 2010
Details: "Posie" -Leong Shee
There is one person who spans the entire history of the Jue Joe Clan and who is remembered by all the clan who knew her with great fondness. It is "Posie" or Leong Shee . Her maiden name was Leong Gin and she was born in Mar Chung Village, Sunwui District ,China ,. She was married to Jew Joe at the Sanjiang Village , Sunwui District China , on November 23, 1902. She lived with Jue Joe in Sanjiang (Sam Gong Village) and had two children San You and San Tong . She stayed in China and held the family together , not hearing from Jue Joe for 9 years, ultimately she emigrated to the USA in 1918 with her two boys to join a husband she had not seen for 12 years ! . After San You's death , and the rift of her daughter in law with Jue Joe , she tries to sneak money to help my Grandaunt May . After the death of San Tong's first wife , Rose, she ultimately takes her son back to China in 1937 to find a new wife for him and returns with San Tong and Ping after their marriage. She acts as Jack and Joan's surrogate mother after the untimely death of their mother and raises them from age 5 and 7 until their teens , while raising her own daughters Dorothy and Corrine . She is the beloved grandma of San Tong and Ping's children ,Soo-Jan , Guy , Pingeleen, and Soo-Yin and is the beloved great grandma of a new generation of Jue's including yours truly . As a young child I have strong memories of my kindly great grandma. I am sure the lawsuit hurt her deeply . She was the link that spanned all the generations of the Jue Joe Clan and the glue that held them together. In the end that glue was not enough.
One of the subplots of this story that I could not understand was how she could emigrate back and forth from China in 1937 during the time of the Oriental Exclusion Act . Here is Leong Shee's immigration picture on reentry to the USA in 1937.
The offical immigration sworn statement that Auntie Soo-Jan so kindly provided me gives us the answer .
Q From what port and on what ship will you sail on this trip?
A " Pres. Coolidge " from San Pedro about March 2, 1937. I am going with my son , Jew Sung Tong .
Q For what purpose are you going and how long do you intend to remain ?
A Just for a few months visit .
Q On what do you base your application for a Laborer's Return Certificate?
A I have my daughter , Dorothy Jew, who will remain in the United States during my absence.
Q Do you understand that your said daughter must so remain until your return from China and that her remaining is a condition of your return as a laborer?
Apparently there was a loophole in the law that allowed Chinese of the prohibited "laborer" class to travel to and from China and the USA if they had a dependent child born in the USA who remained in the USA during their travel .
(Pictures and documents in this post kindly provided by Auntie Soo-Jan )