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Bill Evans and Paul G. Chace Collection2017 M.5. Evans Chace
2017 M.5. Evans Chace  
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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Arrangement
  • Biographical / Historical
  • Conditions Governing Access
  • Immediate Source of Acquisition
  • Preferred Citation
  • Scope and Contents

  • Contributing Institution: Chinese Historical Society of Southern California
    Title: Bill Evans and Paul G. Chace Collection
    Creator: Chace, Paul G.
    Creator: Evans, Bill
    Identifier/Call Number: 2017 M.5. Evans Chace
    Physical Description: 15.93 Linear Feet
    Date (inclusive): 1865-1869
    Abstract: The Chace and Evans collection was originally created in 1967 by archeologists Paul G. Chace and Bill Evans, the collection was used by Patricia A. Etter in the 1970's to sythesize her own research regarding 19th- century Chinese opium-pipes and smoking materials. However, and archeological catalog was not done of the entire collection until years later by John Molenda. Molenda created an archeological catalog in the Summer of 2016 for boxes relating to Donner Summit, Donner Hotel, Virginia City, Bear Valley, Mokelumne Hill, Hornitos, and North San Juan. The collections totals 15 boxes of mostly cermaic, metal, faunal, glass sherds, and sherds of other materials. The artifacts include pieces of clothing, shoes, opium/tobacco paraphernalia, munitions, gaming tokens, table wares, medicinal/alcohol bottles, digging tools, and other campsite items. The first series of the collection, called Donner Summit, consists of nine boxes pertaining to the Donner Summit site are arranged in a numerical manner (1-10). The second part of the series, named Other Northern California Sites (Donner Hotel, Virginia City, Bear Valley, Hornitos, Mokelumne Hill, and North San Juan) consists of six boxes arranged in alphabetical order (A-F). The collection provides intimate information into the lives of 19th- century Chinese railroad workers as to their diet, leisure activites, spending habits/purchases, Chinese cultural practices, marital status, which region of China they hailed from, as well as adaptation to U.S. culture. The collection is important for the study of Chinese American History in the U.S., specifically California, as it gives insight into the types of labor available to Chinese immigrants, gender dynamics, cultural adaptation, and immigration policy during the period of U.S. expansionism. This also includes the racialized position Chinese peoples occupied in California, then a frontier state.
    Language of Material: Chinese .


    The collection is organized into two series: Series I: Donner Summit; Series II: Other Northern California Sites. The boxes in Series I are arranged numerically from 1 through 10. Series II: Other Northern California contains materials from Bear Valley, Hornitos, North San Juan, Mokelumne Hill, Virginia City, and Donner Summit Hotel. Series II is arranged in an alphabetical manner from A through E. The collection does not contain subseries, box-level description is used.
    SERIES I: Donner Summit Camps SERIES II: Othern Northern California Sites

    Biographical / Historical

    Paul G. Chace is a cultural resources consultant and an anthropologist specializing in cultural resources management, preservation law, and ethnic relations theory("Chinese Railroad Workers," 2017). Chace recieved his PhD from University of California, Riverside. His career spans 50 years of work conducting archeological digs, museum work, curating, teaching, being a historian, and ethnologist. He has lectured on topics such as Western prehistory and Chinese American cultural heritage.
    William S. Evans Jr. or also known as Bill Evans, was a trained anthropeulogist, archeologist, and geographer holding both bachelor's and master's degrees from University of California, Berkeley. He served as the first curator at the Rancho Los Cerritos museum in Long Beach, CA. From there he taught anthropology for two decades at Santa Monica College before retiring in 1985(Chace, "Introductory Note to Chace and Evan's 1969 Presentation," 24-25). Evans passed away in 2009.
    Patricia A. Etter was a student of Paul G. Chace. Etter later used the same collection to do research and created a seperate collection of research papers and photographs documenting opium usage by Chinese railroad workers. The Etter collection is also owned by the CHSSC.

    Conditions Governing Access

    This collection is open to researchers and to the public for access. Please contact the Chinese Historical Society of Southern California for more information.

    Immediate Source of Acquisition

    The collection was acquired through Paul G. Chace in late 2009 after the death of William "Bill" S. Evans Jr. passed away, Chace's longtime colleague. The material is the sole property of the Chinese Historical Society of Southern California.

    Preferred Citation

    [Item], [Bill Evans and Paul G. Chace Collection], Chinese Historical Society of Southern California, Los Angeles, California.

    Scope and Contents

    The collection is arranged by series; primary site (Donner Summit, numerically) and by secondary sites (Other Northern California Sites, alphabetically). The material found from these various camp sites contain clothing, bottles of medicine/alcohol, ceramic jars/table wares, metal table wares, gaming tokes, ceramic food storage containers, faunal fragments, munitions, opium and tobacco paraphernalia. The collection contains different glazes and patterns on the ceramic materials such as Chinese Brown Glaze Stoneware, Double Happiness, Bamboo, Wintergreen (Celadon), and Four Seasons. The items are in a fragile state, thus need to be handled carefully and using best archival/archeological standards.

    Subjects and Indexing Terms

    Storage jars