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IDENTIFYING TEMPLE DONORS – “Cheung Ah Tze” 張阿四 Thomas See

By Juanita Kwok and Gill Oxley Amongst the temple artefacts Our Chinese Past (OCP) researched in the Temples project, is a pair of plaques in the collection of the Inverell Pioneer Village Museum, dubbed on the OCP website the “Names Plaque dated 1866” and “Donation Plaque dated 1866.” [1] Our Chinese Past member Paul Macgregor identified these plaques as having been made for a temple that opened in Rocky River in 1866. The names plaque lists the names of two firms and 153 people that were members of the “Yeung Fook Tong” association.[2] These members are given to have collectively donated one or more entrance adornments and door-like screens to the temple, including the Yeung Fook Tong Entrance Adornment.[3] So far only a handful of persons named on the names plaque have been identified. Now, thanks to family history research by Joanne Real and translations by Ely Finch, it seems likely another person has been identified – “Cheung Ah Tze”...
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Vale Malcolm Oakes 1949-2023

Kira Brown, Gill Oxley, Paul Macgregor, Ely Finch and I are devastated at the loss of our dear friend and colleague and Our Chinese Past committee member Malcolm Oakes.
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Queensland Museum’s Chinese collections

One of the largest of the Queensland Museum’s Chinese collections is the Kwong Sang Collection.
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Silk cloth inscribed by Liang Qichao, probably when in Inverell, NSW, in 1901

Likely written for Inverell storekeeper Fong Mon How, this poem expresses support for the Chinese Empire Reform Society.
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The four sons of Cheng Sam Bow and Mrs Minnie Bow of Rocky River

Sam Bow’s store at Rocky River. Image courtesy of Janice Wilton, Heritage Futures Database project supported by the Heritage Futures Research Centre, University of New England, Armidale, 2009. Leslie Alan Bow (1903 – 1983) Leslie Alan Bow was born in Uralla in 1903. His parents’ names at the time of his birth appear in the New South Wales Births, Deaths and Marriages online index as Sam and Minnie Bow.[1] Leslie was the eldest of five boys born to Sam and Minnie, of whom only four survived to adulthood. He married Queensland-born Ching Choy Lan, then known as “Jessie” Ching Sum, at Uralla in 1929, a year after the death of his mother, Minnie in 1928.[2], [3] Choy Lan Bow née Ching then appears to have adopted this westernised first name, “Jessie”, for most of her adult life, reverting to her Chinese given name only at the time of her death in 1999. Accordingly, she will be referred to throughout as...
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The Melbourne See Yup Temple stelae: a genealogical resource

These stelae are inscribed with thousands of Chinese characters, and list the names of the organisers, community representatives, and individual donors who brought about the building's 1866 reconstruction.
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Pieces of Eight: Pig Ovens

The Our Chinese Past Temples Project is looking at artefacts from at least 8 Chinese temples in the New England North West region. None of these temples still exists, but a number of their artefacts do.
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Chinese New Year

Chinese New Year in 2021 begins on 12 February. Back in 1880, Chinese New Year's Day fell on 10 February.
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Introducing Our Chinese Past member – Malcolm Oakes

My name is Malcolm Oakes and I am a member of Our Chinese Past. I’m the historian in the family, but my wife Beverley is the connection to Chinese history. Bev is Australian born Chinese.
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Our Names

Our English name “Our Chinese Past” was selected to reflect our view of Australia’s Chinese history as an integral part of Australian history, something that belongs to all of us as Australians
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