Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Immigration Interview of Lee Bing/Jue Family on Angel Island 1918

See this previous post for an overview of the 1918 Angel Island immigration investigation of the Jue Family.
Lee Bing, is Jew Joe's first cousin. He is at the hearing at the request of Jew Joe as an  identifying witness  who can identify both Jew Joe and his family. An explanation is in order about his three trips to China.
Exclusion era laws allow merchants to come and go at will from the United States to China. They can stay as long as they want and then return to the United States without hinderance as  member of the exempt merchant class.  Chinese in the laborer class cannot travel to and from the United States and China at all unless they belong to a special class of laborers who have a parent, spouse or child who is a legal resident of the United States or if they have $1000 in property or owed debts. If they fit this special category, they may apply for a special return certificate at their port of departure. This is a special certificate, separate from the certificate of identity required of all Chinese in the United States.  Returning laborers are required to present this special certifcate on their return to the United States or they are denied reentry. Also this special return certificate only allows them to stay abroad for a maximum of one year.  Lee Bing travels to China the first time and stays for two years as a merchant . In his second and third trips he stays for one year only and returns as a laborer holding the proper return certificate.

Statement of Identifying Witness.  Interpreter  Chin Jack.
Speaks See Yim dialect; Intepreter qualified
Admonished if you do not understand the Interpeter to immediately so state.

Q What is your name?
A Lee Bing, and Lee Him Way
Q How old are you?
A 52
Q Where were you born?
A Lin Hong Village, S.W. District
Q When did you first come to the United States?
A K.S. 8 (1882)
Q How many trips to China ?
A three trips
Q When did you first make the first trip?
A  K.S. 24 (1898) returned K.S 26 (1900)
Q When did you make the 2nd trip?
A K.S. 32 (1906) returning in K.S. 33 (1907)
Q Whenn did you make the 3rd trip?
A  C.R. 3 (1914) returning C.R 3 (1914)
Q Give me full particulars of your last  admission?
A Departed C.R. 3-2-10 (March 6,1914) on the S.S. Mongolia, returning the 12th month 27th day(February 10,1915) on the S.S. China as a laborer of Los Angeles, under the name of Lee Bing
Q Have you any indentifying papers?
A Applicannt presents certificate of residence 113656, issued at Sacramento, California, April 17, 1894 to Loy Bing, laborer; occupation , gardener,age 29 years, height 5 ft 3 in., mole on chin.   The photograph is faded but resembles the witness and he bears the mole on the chin mentioned on the certificate.  I am satisfied that he is the proper holder of the certificate.  The certificate is endorsed and returned.
Q Is your name Loy Bing or Lee Bing?
A Lee Bing. The Internal Revenue office made a mistake in writing the name Loy Bing.
Q For whom are you appearing today?
A Leong Shee.
Q Any one else?
A Two sons.
Q What are their names ?
A Jew Yew and Jew Sun Tong
Q Has Jew Yew another character to his name?
A Jew Sun Yew, but these names are pronounced  Jew Sun Yew and Jew Sun Choong.
Q On what grounds do you seek to have these three persons admitted to this country?
A As a wife of a merchant, and sons of a merchant.
Q Do you identify these photographs ( indicating photographs in present case)?
A Wong Gage,  Jew Soong, he is called Jew Joe,   Leong Shee,  Jew Sun Yew, and Jew Sun Toong, this is myself. ( Identification of photographs is correct).
Q Have you an extra photograph of yourself?
A Witness submits loose photograph which is endorsed and handed to stenographer for indexing.
Q How long have you known Jew Soong , the father.
A Over 10 years.
Q How much over 10 years.
A About 12 or 13 years altogether.
Q Where did you first meet him?
A He is a first cousin of mine.  I met him  in K.S. 29 at Los Angeles, California (1903)
Q Did you ever know him in China?
A No, maybe when I was a child , I don't remember.  The first time at Los Angeles.
Q When did he first come to this country?
A I don't know. He came before me.
Q If he came before you and you came in 1882 K.S. 8 and you are first cousins, how do you account for the fact that you have never met until K.S. 29.
A Because I was in Chico, California for many years.
Q Was K..S. 29 the year when you first went to Los Angeles?
A Yes .
Q How are you first cousin of Jew Soong?
A His mother is a sister of my  father.
Q What is your father's name?
A Lee Yick Nging.
Q  Was his mother your father's youngest sister or oldest?
A  Eldest sister of my  father.
Q What village does Jew Soong belong to?
A Dai Hong Lee village, portion of Sam Goong S.W. district.
Q How far is that village from your home village?
A Over 10 leas before traveling on water and about 30 leas on water.
Q Have you ever been in his home village?
A Yes.
Q Where did you see Jew Soong's wife and two sons whose photographs you have identified?
A At his house in Dai Hong Lee.
Q Have you ever seen them anywhere else?
A No.
Q How many times  have you visited them?
A Twice
Q Can you tell me the dates of those visits?
A K.S. 32-12th or 13th month ( January or  February 1907) and C.R. 3-4th or 5th month (April to June 1914)  That is as near as I can tell. I am not positive.
Q What was the purpose of those two visits?
A I was to deliver $50.00 on each visit I made.
Q Who sent the $50.00?
A Jew Soong
Q Where did he hand the money to you ?
A In Los Angeles
Q How long did you stay at the time of the two visits?
A On my second visit  I sayed over night, because I could not make the trip to my home the same day.
Q What time did you arrive at Jew Soong's house?
A I did not have my watch with me at that time but it was very dark.
Q Did you have supper with the family that evening?
A I ate with the two sons.
Q Any one else?
A No other.
Q Where was the mother?
A She ate after I did.
Q Did you see anyone else in the house?
A No , only the family.
Q Did you know if anyone else was living  in the same house?
A I did not notice.
Q What time did you leave the next day?
A Pretty early that morning.
Q Did you have anything to eat that morning before leavving?
A Yes.
Q What is the location  of their home in the village?
A 1st house on the 4th row.
Q  Which way did the village face?
A Faces the south.
Q Where was the head of the village?
A To the west.
Q How many rows of houses are there?
A I don't know., I never counted. them.
Q More than four rows?
A A frontage of about 9 houses..
Q There were about 9 rows of houses?
A Yes.
Q Was the applicants house one of the front houses?
A Yes.
Q How many houses were there in their row?
A  4 or 5, I didn't count them. If  more houses have been built recently , I cannott tell you and if the village has been improvved I could not tell you.
Q Are you sure that there is no vacant house or lot in front of the applicants?
A  No house or vacant bulding or lot in front of their house.
Q Was their house in the same position at the time of both of yoour visits?
A  Yes.
Q There is no question at all in your mind as to the position of their home.?
A No
Q Do you know any other building in the village ?
A No.

Inspector's note: Our record No. 14122/10-11 shows that Loy(Lee) Bing was admitted S.S.China, February 8, 1915 as a  returning laborer having departed in March 5,1914. The photograph of the person to whom said record refers is a good likeness of the present witness.  This record does not show his earlier trips.
Q Give me the full particulars of your previous trips to China in K.S. 32 (1906)? .
A Departed K.S. 32-8 (Sept or Oct. 1906) S.S. Nippon Maru and returned K.S. 33-8 (Sept, or Oct. 1907) S.S. Siberia
Q Under what classification did you make that trip?
A Laborer.
Q Did you ever make a trip to China as a merchant?
A Yes, my first trip.
Q Has anyone of the three applicants ever been to your home?
A No.
Q Do  they know any member of your family?
A No.
Q When you went to China last time did you take any money to anyone else?
A Yes
Q To whom?
A Lee Look in my home village.
Q How much?
A $50.00
Q Did you take money  to  anyone else?
A Lee Look and Jew Soong.
Q How does it happen that when you came back from China by the S.S. China  Februrary 8, 1915, when you were asked if you had taken any money or anything else to anyone in China ,you mentioned that you had  taken $50.00 to Lee Look's family but did not mention that you had taken money to anyone else?
A I did not mention Jew Soong because he was my 1st cousin.
Q  I do not see as that is any explanation. Have you anything else to say about this?
A I may have forgotten it.
Q Have you anything further to state?
A Nothing
Q  Have you understood the Interpreter ( thru Inspector Sawyer in Chinese)?
A Yes.
Description  Height 5-ft 2 in. and person has mole on right side of chin.
(see question re witness submits photograph)

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