Finding Aid for the Rose Hum Lee papers, 1940-1964

Processed by Katharine Ng, Marjorie Lee, June 2004; machine-readable finding aid created by Caroline Cubé.
UCLA Library, Department of Special Collections
Manuscripts Division
Room A1713, Charles E. Young Research Library
Box 951575
Los Angeles, CA 90095-1575
Email: spec-coll@library.ucla.edu
URL: http://www.library.ucla.edu/libraries/special/scweb/
© 2009
The Regents of the University of California. All rights reserved.


Descriptive Summary

Title: Rose Hum Lee papers
Date (inclusive): 1940-1964
Collection number: 1002
Creator: Lee, Rose Hum.
Extent: 3 boxes (1.5 lin. ft.)
Abstract: Rose Hum Lee was the first woman and the first Chinese American to head an academic department of an American university when she was appointed in 1956 to chair the Sociology Department at Roosevelt University in Chicago. The bulk of the collection is made up of correspondence written by Rose Hum Lee to her daughter, Elaine Lee. These letters and other documents were collected by Elaine Lee, who kept her mother's letters to her, as well as copies of letters Rose Hum Lee wrote to others and then forwarded to Elaine. The rest of the collections is comprised of transcribed telephone conversations; research on the Chinese in the United States; published and unpublished materials; biographical materials; and related materials. Included in the collection are also the personal papers of Elaine Lee and Henry Evans pertaining to Rose Hum Lee. Materials in the collection are in English except for one item and some occasional markings on the margins of Lee's research data.
Language: Finding aid is written in English.
Repository: University of California, Los Angeles. Library. Department of Special Collections.
Los Angeles, California 90095-1575
Physical location: Stored off-site at SRLF. Advance notice is required for access to the collection. Please contact the UCLA Library, Department of Special Collections Reference Desk for paging information.

Administrative Information

Restrictions on Access

COLLECTION STORED OFF-SITE AT SRLF: Open for research. Advance notice required for access. Contact the UCLA Library, Department of Special Collections Reference Desk for paging information.

Restrictions on Use and Reproduction

Property rights to the physical object belong to the UCLA Library, Department of Special Collections. Literary rights, including copyright, are retained by the creators and their heirs. It is the responsibility of the researcher to determine who holds the copyright and pursue the copyright owner or his or her heir for permission to publish where The UC Regents do not hold the copyright.

Provenance/Source of Acquisition

Henry Yu, 2003.

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], Rose Hum Lee papers (Collection Number 1002). Department of Special Collections, Charles E. Young Research Library, UCLA.

Biography

Rose Hum Lee (Lee was her married name) was born Hum Kim Mei on August 20, 1904 in Butte, Montana. She was the second eldest in a family of four girls and three boys. Her father, Hum Wah Long, emigrated from Guangdong, China in the 1870s. From California to Montana, he worked as a manual laborer and he eventually became a successful merchant and landowner in Butte. Lee's mother, Chiu Lin Fong, arrived in the United States in 1900 and met her husband for the first time when she stepped onto the port of Portland, Oregon.
After graduating from high school and briefly attending a local college, Rose Hum Lee married Ku Young Lee, a China-born engineering student at the University of Pennsylvania. Under a 1907 US statute (later reinforced by the Cable Act of 1922), Lee lost her US citizenship when she married Ku Young Lee because he was an alien ineligible for US citizenship. Lee applied for and received the reinstatement of her US citizenship in 1939.
The couple left for Canton, China in 1929. In Canton, Lee worked in different governmental agencies and American corporations, and when the Japanese started bombing Canton in 1938, Lee worked as a radio receptor and interpreter of Mikado's English-language broadcast. She also assisted with various war and refugee relief agencies and founded the Women's International Club of China. Lee was especially concerned with the welfare of children and became involved in Madame Chiang Kai-shek's "warphan" project to aid children orphaned by the war.
In late December of 1938, Lee returned to the United States with her adopted daughter, Elaine Lee. Her husband stayed in China and they filed for divorce in 1943. Lee continued her earlier studies, and in 1942 received her BS in social work from the Carnegie Institute of Technology. She subsequently received her MA in 1943 and Ph.D. in sociology in 1947 from the University of Chicago. During this period, Lee supported herself by writing stories and articles for various periodicals and journals, and she lectured, throughout the United States, about China and the Chinese in America.
Lee focused most of her research activities on the Chinese in America and urban sociology, and she had a strong interest in promoting inter-group race relations within her discipline. Conducting extensive research and documentation on China towns in America, especially in Tucson, Arizona, she became one of the leading cultural and sociological interpreters on the Chinese in America. In 1956, Chicago's Roosevelt University appointed Lee to become Chair of its Sociology Department, thus making her the first woman and the first Chinese American to head an academic department of an American university.
In 1960, Lee moved to Phoenix, Arizona to be closer to her second husband. While there, she taught at Phoenix College and worked on various research projects concerning the welfare of Native Americans in Arizona. Lee passed away in Phoenix, Arizona on March 24, 1964.

Scope and Content

The bulk of the collection is made up of correspondence written by Rose Hum Lee to her daughter, Elaine Lee. These letters and other documents were collected by Elaine Lee, who kept her mother's letters to her, as well as copies of letters Rose Hum Lee wrote to others and then forwarded to Elaine.
The rest of the collections is comprised of transcribed telephone conversations; research on the Chinese in the United States; published and unpublished materials; biographical materials; and related materials. Included in the collection are also the personal papers of Elaine Lee and Henry Evans pertaining to Rose Hum Lee. Materials in the collection are in English except for one item and some occasional markings on the margins of Lee's research data.
Several items are photocopies inter-filed from Henry Yu's copies of Lee's materials, which he made in 1993. When this collection was acquired in August 2001, these items were missing and Elaine Lee had already passed away for 3 years.
For more background on Rose Hum Lee, see Henry Yu, Thinking Orientals: Migration, Contact, and Exoticism in Modern America (New York: Oxford University Press, 2001). Lee's letters and writings were also the subject of Katharine Ng's undergraduate history honors thesis, "Fear and Loathing of Chinatown: The 1950s and Rose Hum Lee's Desire for Assimilation," located at the information entered in other parts of the finding aid.

Organization and Arrangement

Arranged in the following series:
  • I. Correspondence is arranged chronologically by date. Few letters were written before 1958, so all letters are separated by year except for those written prior to 1958. Letters written before 1958 are grouped together and undated or incomplete correspondence are placed at the end.
  • II. Transcribed Telephone Conversations are telephone conversations between Rose Hum Lee and her husband Glenn Ginn from 1958 to 1959. The telephone conversations were transcribed by Rose Hum Lee.
  • III. Research on the Chinese in America contains newspaper and magazine articles on the Chinese in the United States. It also contains the dated and undated record of current events and news on the Chinese in the United States and maps, charts, lists, and field notes Rose Hum Lee produced. These are arranged into the following categories: Newspaper and Magazine Articles, Record of Current Events and News, 1959-1960, Record of Current Events and News, undated, and Maps, Chart, Lists, and Field Notes.
  • IV. Published Works includes Rose Hum Lee's published works, manuscripts, and reviews of her book, written from 1943 to 1960.
  • V. Manuscripts of Unpublished Works contains manuscripts of Rose Hum Lee's unpublished works.
  • VI. Personal and Biographical Materials contains materials about Rose Hum Lee including newspaper and magazine articles, bios and curriculum vitae, flyers, press releases, photos, awards, some personal items, documents of her financial assets, and her obituaries.
  • VII. Related Materials includes items that are organized into two categories: professional and personal. The professional items include forms and applications, correspondence, and other items. Personal items contain contact and mailing lists and other items pertaining to Glenn Ginn.
  • VIII. Additional Files are files related to Rose Hum Lee, collected by Elaine Lee and Henry Evans. In Elaine Lee's file, there are correspondence, Elaine's profile, and some Chinese practice writing books and storybooks. In Henry Evans' file, there are correspondence, outlines of Lee's manuscript, Lin Fong: Proxy Bride, and some Chinese bingo sheets.
Abbreviations*
  • R. H. Lee –Rose Hum Lee
  • E. Lee –Elaine Lee
  • G. Ginn –Glenn Ginn
  • H. Evans –Henry Evans
*Names that appeared in the container list three or more times were abbreviated.

Indexing Terms

The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.

Subjects

Lee, Rose Hum, 1940-1964 –Archives
Chinese Americans.
Chinese Americans–Arizona–Tucson
Chinese Americans–Political Activity
Chinese Americans–Social Conditions


Container List

 

1. Correspondence

 

1940-1957

Physical Description: 1 folder
Box 1, Folder 1

Letters and Drafts, 1940-57 1940-1964

Physical Description: 7 items

Scope and Content Note

Copies of correspondence generated by RHL, 1940-1957, to: Madame Chiang Kai Shek; Elaine Lee.
 

1958

Physical Description: 1 folder
Box 1, Folder 2

Letters and Drafts, 1958 1940-1964

Physical Description: 21 items

Scope and Content Note

Copies of correspondence generated by RHL, 1958, to: Elaine Lee; Glenn Ginn; Postmaster (Tucson, AZ); Arthur Summerfield, Postmaster; John Salyer.
 

1959

Physical Description: 2 folders
Box 1, Folder 3

Letters and Drafts, 1959, 1 of 2 1940-1964

Physical Description: 27 items

Scope and Content Note

Copies of correspondence generated by RHL, 1959, to: Elaine Lee; Glenn Ginn; Rowland Hill; Henry Luce; Walter Judd; Russell Sackett, Life Magazine.
Box 1, Folder 4

Letters and Drafts, 1959, 2 of 2 1940-1964

Physical Description: 17 items

Scope and Content Note

Copies of correspondence generated by RHL, 1959, to: Elaine Lee; Henry Evans.
 

1960

Physical Description: 2 folders
Box 1, Folder 5

Letters and Drafts, 1960, 1 of 2 1940-1964

Physical Description: 26 items

Scope and Content Note

Copies of correspondence generated by RHL, 1960, to: Elaine Lee; Burton Wolfe, Editor of California Liberal; Henry Evans; Glenn Ginn; Jim Hum; Franklin Williams, Justice Department.
Box 1, Folder 6

Letters and Drafts, 1960, 2 of 2 1940-1964

Physical Description: 24 items

Scope and Content Note

Copies of correspondence generated by RHL, 1960, to: Elaine Lee; Glenn Ginn; Phillip Santora; Henry Evans; J. Johnson, Ebony Magazine.
 

1961

Physical Description: 2 folders
Box 1, Folder 7

Letters and Drafts, 1961, 1 of 2 1940-1964

Physical Description: 16 items

Scope and Content Note

Copies of correspondence generated by RHL, 1961, to: Elaine Lee; Henry Evans; Glenn Ginn.
Box 1, Folder 8

Letters and Drafts, 1961, 2 of 2 1940-1964

Physical Description: 20 items

Scope and Content Note

Copies of correspondence generated by RHL, 1961, to: Elaine Lee; Glenn Ginn; Henry Evans.
 

1962

Physical Description: 2 folders
Box 1, Folder 9

Letters and Drafts, 1962, 1 of 2 1940-1964

Physical Description: 15 items

Scope and Content Note

Copies of correspondence generated by RHL, 1962, to: Elaine Lee; Glenn Ginn; Henry Evans; Mrs. Meyer.
Box 1, Folder 10

Letters and Drafts, 1962, 2 of 2 1940-1964

Physical Description: 13 items

Scope and Content Note

Copies of correspondence generated by RHL, 1962, to: Elaine Lee; Henry Evans.
 

1963

Physical Description: 2 folders
Box 1, Folder 11

Letters and Drafts, 1963, 1 of 2 1940-1964

Physical Description: 16 items

Scope and Content Note

Copies of correspondence generated by RHL, 1963, to: Elaine Lee; Henry Evans.
Box 1, Folder 12

Letters and Drafts, 1963, 2 of 2 1940-1964

Physical Description: 17 items

Scope and Content Note

Copies of correspondence generated by RHL, 1963, to: Elaine Lee; Henry Evans.
 

1964

Physical Description: 1 folder
Box 1, Folder 13

Letters and Drafts, 1964 1940-1964

Physical Description: 8 items

Scope and Content Note

Copies of correspondence generated by RHL, 1964, to: Elaine Lee; Henry Evans.
 

Undated and Incomplete

Physical Description: 1 folder
Box 1, Folder 14

Letters and Drafts, Undated 1940-1964

Physical Description: 5 items

Scope and Content Note

Copies of correspondence generated by RHL, to: Elaine Lee; unknown.
 

2. Transcribed Telephone Conversations

 

1958-1959

Physical Description: 1 folder
Box 1, Folder 15

Transcribed Telephone Conversations 1940-1964

Physical Description: 17 items

Scope and Content Note

Copies of dated, transcribed telephone conversations with Glenn Ginn, 1958-1959.
 

3. Research on the Chinese in America

 

Current Events and News Log, 1959-1960

Physical Description: 1 folder
Box 2, Folder 2

Current Events & News Log, 1959-60 1940-1964

Physical Description: 6 items

Scope and Content Note

Transcription of call from agent; Clippings Re: Narcotic apprehensions from New Service Releases, "Kingpin of On Leong Tong", Chinese in U.S.A. -- Points to consider; More Analyzing, Suggested Methods for Solving Cases, and Resume of Postal Difficulties.
 

Current Events and News Log, undated

Physical Description: 1 folder
Box 2, Folder 3

Current Events & News Log, undated 1940-1964

Physical Description: 3 items

Scope and Content Note

Various clippings: "Developments: Soleng Tom, Tucson, Arizona, during past four weeks"; RE: Hung League, or Triad, and/or Sam Hop Woi, and Chee Kung Tong or Masons; RE: Efforts to make him (Glenn Ginn) Chee Kung Tong Members.
 

Maps, Charts, Lists, and Field Notes

Physical Description: 1 folder
Box 2, Folder 4

Maps, Charts, Lists, Field Notes 1940-1964

Physical Description: 9 items

Scope and Content Note

Maps: Network--Chinese Institutions & Associations for Foreign Borns in U.S.; Network; Interlocking Network, Chinese Institutions and Associations for Foreign- Borns. Charts: Chinese Institutional & Association Activities of Foreign-Borns in Hierarchal Importance in U.S.; Pattern of Actions (involving Chinese). Lists: Suggested Outline of Communist Strategy to Overseas Chinese; Persons and Organizations Making Trouble for Glenn Ginn and RHL; Persons related to Glenn Ginn whom he helped get a start in U.S. Field Notes: A Note of Explanation about Chinese Man's 'formal' or 'marriage name'.
 

Newspaper and Magazine Articles

Physical Description: 2 folders
Box 1, Folder 16

Newspaper & Mag. Articles, 1 of 2 1940-1964

Physical Description: 27 items

Scope and Content Note

Copies of various newspaper and magazine articles from the San Francisco Chronicle, San Francisco Examiner, San Min Chinese Newspaper, Translation, Oregonian, Chinese Times, New York Times, Toronto Globe and Mail, The Sun, Toronto Star, Montreal Sun. Arizona Daily Star; letters to Editor of California Liberal.
Box 2, Folder 1

Newspaper & Mag. Articles, 2 of 2 1940-1964

Physical Description: 5 items

Scope and Content Note

Copies of various newspaper and magazine articles from The California Liberal, The Thought Reform of the Chinese Intellectuals, Macleans, and a book review of The House that Tai Ming Built .
 

4. Published Works

 

Articles

Physical Description: 1 folder
Box 2, Folder 6

Articles 1940-1964

Physical Description: 11 items

Scope and Content Note

Various articles from magazines and journals: Chatelaine; Survey Graphic; China Monthly; The Chinese Christian Student; Chicago Schools Journal; Phi Delta Gamma Journal ; Journal of Human Relations; Phylon; The Midwest Sociologist.
 

Children's Stories

Physical Description: 1 folder
Box 2, Folder 5

Children's Stories 1940-1964

Physical Description: 6 items

Scope and Content Note

Various stories from Child Life, Girls Today, The Hawaiian Chinese Journal: "Chinese Children's Pets", "The Rice of Freemen", "Shoes from Shoe Street", "Dangerous Opportunity"; mystery play Little Lee Bobo or The Chinatown Detective.
 

Manuscripts

Box 2, Folder 9

Manuscripts, 2 of 3 1940-1964

Physical Description: 1 item

Scope and Content Note

Manuscript of Chinese in the USA, Ch. 1-9.
Box 2, Folder 10

Manuscripts, 3 of 3 1940-1964

Physical Description: 1 item

Scope and Content Note

Manuscript of Chinese in the USA, Ch. 10-15.
 

Manuscripts

Physical Description: 3 folders
Box 2, Folder 8

Manuscripts, 1 of 3 1940-1964

Physical Description: 1 item

Scope and Content Note

Manuscript of "Shoes From Shoe Street", in Child Life.
 

Monographs

Physical Description: 1 folder
Box 2, Folder 7

Monographs 1940-1964

Physical Description: 3 items

Scope and Content Note

Various published works in journals, including The Builder, and North Kenwood-Oakland's "Community Facts" and "Juvenile Delinquency, Truancy, and Crime".
 

Programs, Reviews, and Table of Contents

Physical Description: 1 folder
Box 2, Folder 11

Programs, Reviews, Table Contents 1940-1964

Physical Description: 4 items

Scope and Content Note

Program for Little Lee Bobo; Reviews of "The Chinese in the USA" by RHL; Table of Contents of "Chinese in the USA", 1960.
 

5. Manuscripts of Unpublished Works

 

"Lee Bao Bao"

Physical Description: 1 folder
Box 2, Folder 12

"Lee Bao Bao" 1940-1964

Physical Description: 1 item

Scope and Content Note

Manuscript of Lee Bao Bao by RHL.
 

"Lin Fong: Proxy Bride"

Physical Description: 3 folders
Box 3, Folder 1

"Lin Fong: Proxy Bride", 1 of 3 1940-1964

Physical Description: 1 item

Scope and Content Note

"Lin Fong: Proxy Bride", Chapters 1-6.
Box 3, Folder 2

"Lin Fong: Proxy Bride", 2 of 3 1940-1964

Physical Description: 1 item

Scope and Content Note

"Lin Fong: Proxy Bride", Chapters 7-11.
Box 3, Folder 3

"Lin Fong: Proxy Bride", 3 of 3 1940-1964

Physical Description: 1 item

Scope and Content Note

"Lin Fong: Proxy Bride", Chapters 20-26.
 

"Minorities in the Metropolis"

Physical Description: 1 folder
Box 2, Folder 13

"Minorities in the Metropolis" 1940-1964

Physical Description: 1 item

Scope and Content Note

Paper read at a conference, S.H. Theological Seminary, April 1, 1963.
 

"Selection and Training of Village Workers"

Physical Description: 1 folder
Box 2, Folder 15

"... Village Workers" 1940-1964

Physical Description: 1 item

Scope and Content Note

To be revised, second draft, of "Case 1 Selection and Training of Village Workers".
 

"The Impact of the East on the West"

Physical Description: 1 folder
Box 2, Folder 14

"Impact of the East on the West" 1940-1964

Physical Description: 1 item

Scope and Content Note

Manuscript of "The Impact of the East on the West" by RHL.
 

6. Personal and Biographical Materials

 

Articles

Physical Description: 1 folder
Box 3, Folder 4

Articles 1940-1964

Physical Description: 11 items

Scope and Content Note

Various newspaper and magazine articles in Roosevelt College News, The Hawaii Chinese Journal, Chinese American Weekly, South China Morning Post, Sing Tao Newspaper , Sun Times, Carnegie Alumnus, Progress--a report from Roosevelt University.
 

Awards

Physical Description: 1 folder
Box 3, Folder 7

Awards 1940-1964

Physical Description: 1 item

Scope and Content Note

B'nai B'rith "Women of Achievement" Program. Nov. 19, 1959.
 

Biographical Data/Curriculum Vita

Physical Description: 1 folder
Box 3, Folder 5

Biographical Data/Curriculum Vita 1940-1964

Physical Description: 3 items

Scope and Content Note

Introductions of RHL (from various sources in multiple forms); Curriculum Vitae; "Data Needed" List.
 

Financial Assets

Physical Description: 1 folder
Box 3, Folder 9

Financial Assets 1940-1964

Physical Description: 4 items

Scope and Content Note

Various papers including: correspondence regarding RHL's insurance; "List of properties, Glenn Ginn"; "Assets & where they are" List; savings accounts and vault box (list).
 

Flyers, Press Releases, and Photos

Physical Description: 1 folder
Box 3, Folder 6

Flyers and Press Releases 1940-1964

Physical Description: 4 items

Scope and Content Note

Various clippings: Introduction of RHL in Adult Education Council of Chicago, 1948-1949; RHL's chairman appt. at Roosevelt College, Feb. 9, 1950; RHL's Study Abroad Tour, Nov. 20, 1958; Roosevelt University Archives publicity material.
 

Obituaries

Physical Description: 1 folder
Box 3, Folder 10

Obituaries 1940-1964

Physical Description: 2 items

Scope and Content Note

Roosevelt University Memorandum re: RHL's death, March 30, 1964; RHL's obituaries from various newspapers, March 1964.
 

Personal Documents

Physical Description: 1 folder
Box 3, Folder 8

Personal Documents 1940-1964

Physical Description: 4 items

Scope and Content Note

Various personal items including: Marriage certificate of RHL and Ku Young Lee, June 21, 1925; Divorce Decree of RHL and Ku Young Lee, July 12, 1943; Clerk of Orphans' Court, Feb. 7, 1945; "Glenn's Box of Letters" List, April 4, 1957.
 

Photographs

Physical Description: 1 folder
Box 3, Folder 11

Photographs 1940-1964

Physical Description: 10 pieces

Scope and Content Note

Black and white photographs of Rose Hum Lee; former husband Ku Young Lee; S. D. Kwan; unknown individuals. Includes wedding portrait of Lee.
Box 3, Folder 11

Photographs 1940-1964

Physical Description: 10 items

Scope and Content Note

Wedding photos; portraits; snapshots of self, friends, and family.
 

7. Related Materials

 

Personal

Physical Description: 2 folders
Box 3, Folder 15

Personal - Contact & Mailing Lists 1940-1964

Physical Description: 3 items

Scope and Content Note

Various lists including: Personal Contact List; Just in Case: Local friends; Mailing List.
Box 3, Folder 16

Personal - Glenn Ginn & other 1940-1964

Physical Description: 6 items

Scope and Content Note

Various items including: Glenn Ginn's business card, political calendars (August & September 1960), classified political directory; 3×5 notecard signed by RHL; envelopes.
 

Professional

Physical Description: 3 folders
Box 3, Folder 12

Professional - Forms & Applications 1940-1964

Physical Description: 5 items

Scope and Content Note

Various papers including: Roosevelt University staff record; US Committee International Conference of Social Work form; Recommendation for Graduate Faculty Membership; Roosevelt College Public Relations Faculty & Administration Bio Form; Sociology Department Graduate Program.
Box 3, Folder 13

Professional - Correspondence 1949- 1940-1964

Physical Description: 15 items

Scope and Content Note

Correspondence involving William E. Cash, Sophie Nack, Mr. Schwertman, Mr. Dibble, Mrs. Einbecker, Sgd. Wilfred Blythe, Olga Corey, Ruth Fegley, Henri Vetch, President Sparling (Edward).
Box 3, Folder 14

Professional - news, program, survey 1940-1964

Physical Description: 4 items

Scope and Content Note

Various items including: Roosevelt College in the Press of the Nation; Itinerary from RHL's Study Abroad Tour; Preliminary Program for 11th Annual Midwest Conference on Asian Affairs; A partial survey in Chinese regarding alcohol consumption habits of parents.
 

8. Additional Files

 

Materials from Elaine Lee

Physical Description: 2 folders
Box 3, Folder 17

Materials from Elaine Lee, 1 of 2 1940-1964

Physical Description: 1 item

Scope and Content Note

Elaine Lee's file (including various letters and articles).
Box 3, Folder 18

Materials from Elaine Lee, 2 of 2 1940-1964

Physical Description: 1 item

Scope and Content Note

Elaine Lee's file (including various booklets).
 

Materials from Henry Evans

Physical Description: 1 folder
Box 3, Folder 19

Materials from Henry Evans 1940-1964

Physical Description: 1 item

Scope and Content Note

Henry Evan's File (including various letters and misc. papers).