Transcription Page

1904-10 Rex vs. Wong On and Wong Gow – murder (at the Chinese theatre)

As part of the Chinese Historical Wrongs Legacy Initiative, the BC Archives has digitized a selection of documents related to criminal prosecutions against the Chinese community from 1866 to 1914, found in GR-0419. These are mainly records created as part of the preliminary hearing held before a judge in order to determine whether there was sufficient evidence to proceed to trial. There are often lengthy witness statements, and cross examinations by both prosecution and defense lawyers. The eventual verdict is sometimes recorded on the outside of the docket. They offer a fascinating glimpse into 19th and early 20th century criminal activity around the province, and ways in which the Chinese community was stereotyped. The records offered for transcription here are a small selection; for additional digitized material from GR-0419 click here. 

*Please note that archival source materials are original historical documents that have not been censored, reviewed or otherwise altered by the Royal BC Museum. Some materials may contain content that is racist, sexist or otherwise offensive. In addition, GR-0419 records deal with subjects such as assault, murder and abuse, which may upset some readers. The Royal BC Museum is only the custodian of archival materials; the content does not necessarily reflect the views or policies of the Royal BC Museum.
*All transcriptions are provided by volunteers, and the accuracy of the transcriptions is not guaranteed. Please be sure to verify the information by viewing the image record, or visiting the BC Archives in person. 

BC Archives G-0419

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Constable W.G. Carson, having been duly called on behalf of the prosecution as witness, and sworn, testifies as follows,

Examination in chief by Mr. Moresby:

Q What is your name? A William George Carson is my name.

Q You are a City Constable here, Mr. Carson? A Yes.

Q Where were you on the night of the 31st January last? A I was on barrack duty.

Q In the morning were you down at the Chinese Theatre on that morning? A Yes.

Q You went to that place from information you received? A Yes.

Q You were at the police barrack at the time you got this Information? A Yes.

Q And then you went down to the Chinese Theatre? A Yes.

Q When you got down at the Chinese Theatre what happened - what did you see? A I saw a chinaman laying on the floor of the stage.

Q The first floor - you might tell us how you got into the Chinese Theatre A I got in from Cormorant Street along the alley - the public entrance of the Chinese Theatre.

Q The Chinese Theatre lays between Fisgard and Cormorant Street? A Yes.

Q There is a narrow alleyway joining those two streets, and you go through that alleyway to go to the Theatre? A Yes.

Q Which door did you go in by, the public or the private? A The public door.

BC Archives GR-0419 Box 100 File 1904/10 / BRITISH COLUMBIA. ATTORNEY GENERAL. / Attorney General documents.

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