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Asian Canadian Studies

A research guide for Asian Canadian Studies

Note on Archival Materials

Below is a selection of fonds (archival collections) related to Asian Canadian individuals, families and organizations from Vancouver and other locations in BC, available for consultation at UBC's Rare Books & Special Collections and University Archives. For a detailed overview of Asian Canadian archival materials at UBC, please consult the Asian Canadian History and Archives Guide.

General information on finding appropriate primary sources and using archival materials in your research can be found in our guides on Primary Sources and Finding and Using Materials in Rare Books and Special Collections.

For other notable archival collections in British Columbia and Canada, please scroll down to the Archives Beyond UBC section.

Chinese Canadians

  • Chock On fonds, named after a house located at 359 East Pender Street, Vancouver, consists of the incoming correspondence of Wo Shou, Wo Sai Jik and other members of the Wo Surname Association.
  • Foon Sien Wong fonds consists of clippings relating to international affairs, Chinese customs preserved in Canada, life in Vancouver's China Town, collected by Foon Sien Wong, an activist and spokesman for the Chinese Canadian community.
  • Jim Wong-Chu fonds consists of records related to Asian Canadian cultural and literary communities and social justice and historical issues, donated by Jim Wong-Chu, a writer, photographer, historian, radio producer, community organizer and activist.
  • Larry Wong fonds consists primarily of records relating to two specific areas of Larry Wong’s life – his writing and his interest in Chinese-Canadian History, as well as some personal documents.
  • Lee Family fonds consists of correspondence and financial records which document the business activities of the Lee family of ranchers, store keepers and fur traders at Hanceville and Alexis Creek, B.C.
  • Lock Tin Lee fonds contains records pertinent to Lock Tin Lee’s functions as a Kuomintang (KMT) member, a public school educator, his personal life, and his overall involvement in organizations and affairs concerning the overseas Chinese.
  • Peggy Lee fonds reflects Lee’s professional career, investment ventures, engagement with political and social communities, and life with friends and family.
  • Ron Bick Lee fonds consists of textual material, graphic material and artifacts related to Ron Bick Lee, also known as Bick Lee, a Chinese Canadian pioneer, successful businessman and community leader.
  • Thomas Whaun fonds consists primarily of correspondence with accompanying newspaper clippings, diaries and photographs of Thomas Moore Whaun, an early Chinese-Canadian graduate of UBC and the first non-white resident of West Vancouver.
  • Won Alexander Cumyow fonds consists of correspondence, journals, scrapbooks, photographs, diplomas, certificates and reference and printed materials relating to Won Alexander Cumyow, the first Chinese person recorded as being born in Canada.
  • Chinese Consul of Vancouver fonds consists of a photocopied letterpress copybook used in consul business between 1914 and 1915, generated under the direction of Chinese consul Lin Shih Yuan.
  • Wah Shun Company fonds consists of records created and/or received by the Wah Shun Company of Vancouver between 1919 and 1938. Materials include contracts, correspondence, cheque books, invoices and photographs.
  • Chinese Canadian Research Collection grew out of a number of research projects undertaken by three UBC professors, Edgar Wickberg (History), Graham Johnson (Anthropology) and William Willmott (Sociology).
  • Historical Chinese Language Materials in British Columbia: An Electronic Inventory (HCLMBC) was a collaboration between UBC and SFU to digitize historical records and images related to Chinese settlement and life in British Columbia.
  • Paper Trail Collection consists of records collected by Catherine B. Clement towards her research project on the 1923 Chinese Exclusion Act. The collection includes Chinese Immigration and other registration and identification certificates.
  • Wallace B. Chung and Madeline H. Chung Collection consists of documents, archival records, photographs, ephemera and artifacts related to three broad themes: British Columbia history; immigration and settlement in North America (especially the Chinese-Canadian experience); and the Canadian Pacific Railway Company (PRC).

Japanese Canadians

  • Denbei Kobayashi fonds consists of diaries (1913-1915, 1917-1935, 1938-1940), letters, newspaper clippings, photographs and other items that belonged to Denbei Kobayashi, a fruit grower and writer in the Okanagan Valley.
  • Glenn McPherson fonds consists mainly of records assembled by McPherson over the course of his professional career, including documents related to his role in deciding whether Japanese Canadians would be interned in 1942.
  • Gordon Goichi Nakayama fonds consists of textual records, photographs and audiovisual materials, spanning the period 1905-2001, related primarily to Gordon Goichi Nakayama’s career with the Anglican Church of Canada and his missionary work.
  • Inouye Family fonds consists of photographs and textual records which belonged to the Inouye family. The records are related mostly to the father, Zennosuke Inouye and his involvement with the Surrey Berry Farmers Cooperative.
  • Jack Duggan fonds consists of a scrapbook and photographs documenting the lives of Japanese Canadian internees in the Lemon Creek internment camp during World War II and their reunions after the war.
  • Joy Kogawa fonds consists of material related to Joy Nozomi Kogawa's writing projects, her participation in literary, cultural and human rights conferences and events, her involvement in community organizations, and her personal life.
  • Kosaburo Shimizu fonds consists of diaries (1909-1922, 1924-1961), notebooks, copies of sermons and miscellaneous materials related to Shimizu’s religious work and personal life.
  • Kudo Family fonds reflects Minoru Kudo’s involvement within the Japanese Canadian community both before and after World War II as well as the Kudo family’s experience of forced removal and its impacts on their lives moving forward.
  • Margaret Sage fonds consists of one scrapbook of photographs taken by Sage between September 1945 and August 1946 in and around the Tashme Japanese relocation camp where she served as a social worker.
  • Mitsuru Shimpo fonds consists of correspondence (1960-1983), scrapbooks (1970- 1977) and diaries (1962-1976). In addition there are eight sound recordings (1971) with Japanese-Canadian pioneers about their early experiences in this province.
  • R.A. Shiomi fonds consists of correspondence and writings of R.A. Shiomi and material relating to the activities of, and Shiomi's participation in, the Japanese Canadian Citizens Association.
  • Roy Miki fonds consists of correspondence, manuscripts, drafts, pamphlets, academic papers, poems, research and other material belonging to poet and SFU professor emeritus, Roy Miki.
  • Yasutaro Yamaga fonds consists of biographical information, diaries, manuscripts, correspondence and materials pertaining to the Haney Agricultural Association, Fraser Valley Japanese Language School, Nipponia Home and the Japanese Canadian United Church.
  • Japanese-Canadian Commerce Students Collection contains correspondence between UBC professor E. H. Morrow and six of his Japanese Canadian students who graduated in 1942, providing insight into the treatment of Japanese Canadians during the 1940s.
  • Japanese Canadian History Preservation Committee fonds consists of 134 cassette tapes of 91 interviews with Japanese Canadians and two bound volumes containing an index to individuals interviewed, data sheets and consent forms for use of the material.
  • National Association of Japanese Canadians fonds consists of materials documenting the activities of the National Association of Japanese Canadians (NAJC) during four general time periods: pre-redress, redress, implementation of redress and post-implementation.
  • Pitt Meadows Japanese Farmers' Association fonds consists of correspondence, financial records, printed material and related items pertaining to the activities of the Pitt Meadows Japanese Farmers' Association and the Canadian Japanese Association in Vancouver.
  • Radio Canada International Recordings Collection consists of audio cassettes and vinyl records created by Radio Canada International in the course of promoting Canada and Canadian culture to the people of Japan.
  • United Fishermen and Allied Workers' Union fonds consists of minutes, correspondence, legal documents, financial records and other published and printed material generated by the UFAWU, its locals and predecessor organizations,
  • Japanese Canadian Research Collection consists of approximately fifty small fonds donated by individuals and organizations, encompassing a wide range of topics including relocation to internment camps during WWII, farming, lumbering, religious activities and personal reminiscences.
  • Japanese Canadian Photograph Collection documents a wide range of experiences of Canadians of Japanese descent in British Columbia, particularly chronicling their treatment during World War II.

Korean Canadians

South Asian Canadians

  • Hundal family fonds consists of family documents, some correspondence regarding the patriarch, Hakim Singh Hundal's initial business, and photographs of the family entering Canada, their home in Vancouver etc.
  • Ujjal Dosanjh fonds consists of the former premier of British Columbia's private records from 1977 to 2015, comprising all aspects of his life in Canada. A prominent portion relates to his lifelong advocacy of Indo-Canadian issues.