By Judy Tzu-Chun Wu
This is the 1st biography to discover Margaret Chung's striking and intricate lifestyles. It brings alive the bohemian and queer social milieus of Hollywood and San Francisco in addition to the wartime famous person neighborhood Chung cultivated. Her lifestyles gives a unprecedented glimpse into the probabilities of traversing racial, gender, and sexual obstacles of yank society from the past due Victorian period during the early chilly struggle period.
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Extra info for Doctor Mom Chung of the Fair-Haired Bastards: The Life of a Wartime Celebrity
43 Still, Chinese Americans did not become the predominant residents of the area. 45 Dorothy, the youngest child in the Chung family, recalled that even when they resided in areas with few Chinese Americans, Chung Wong and Minnie took their children to Chinatown to visit friends and “family,” most likely Minnie’s “sisters” from the mission home. The Chungs also attended Chinese church (a Christian institution with a Chinese congregation). When they lived close enough to a Chinese school, Chung Wong and Minnie sent their children in the afternoons, after attending public school, to improve their Chinese and learn about the history and culture of their ancestral country.
32 Despite being “an invalid most of her life,” Minnie fueled her daughter’s desire to learn. The Chungs’ economic and racial status, however, affected their ability to educate their children. Like other poor families, they moved rather frequently, looking for work. As a result, Margaret’s early education was repeatedly interrupted. In June of 1899, her name appears in the records of the San Buena Ventura school district in Ventura County as a fourth-grade pupil. 33 She most likely joined the school late in the academic year, since that is when her family moved into the county.
17 The Chung family regularly attended the Santa Barbara First Presbyterian Church as well as its affiliated Chinese mission. 18 In addition, Minnie kept in contact with her “sisters” from the Presbyterian Chinese Mission Home. Like her, other Chinese women had left the mission home to marry and create Christian homes of their own. 19 Chin Mooie’s papers indicate that she corresponded, exchanged photographs, and sent clothes to former mission home residents. One letter, written by a mission home “sister,” reports the changes in the lives of other residents: My Dear Sister Your letter was received.