1895/39 Regina vs. Lee Heng Yum – gaming, Victoria (good description of Fan Tan Alley)
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*Please note that archival source materials are original historical documents that have not been censored, reviewed or otherwise altered by the Royal BC Museum.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.
per day; I was in the tan room on Wednesday 28th November and Friday 30th November and I laid the information 1st December; no one spoke to me about laying this information; I was summoned myself for gambling about two weeks ago on 30th November; I received the summons on Friday to appear in the Court on Tuesday and I laid this charge; next day after I received the summons; I am sure the money belonged to the accused because h carried into the room; other men were dealing in that room, I don't know who, on the same 28th November.
To the Court:
The accused was dealing all the time I was in the room and at the same table; other men were dealing at the other tables; I did not hear the accused talk to the cashier at his table or to the man handling the tan at the other tables.
(Signature in Chinese).
Ah Wing, Interpreter.
(Sd) F. Macrae, P.M.