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National Museum of Australia

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Chinese Remonstrance to the Parliament and People of Victoria. Issued by their committee: Cheok Hong Cheong, Chairman

2011.0019.0001

On display

Chinese Remonstrance to the Parliament and People of Victoria. Issued by their committee: Cheok Hong Cheong, Chairman

Object information

Physical description

A book with a faded pink soft-cover, titled in printed black text with 'CHINESE / REMONSTRANCE / TO THE / PARLIAMENT AND PEOPLE / OF / VICTORIA.' The number '341' is handwritten in pencil at the top of the cover.

Statement of significance

The Chinese In Australia Rare Books collection includes a book, an advertising flyer, and a group of 18 parliamentary papers from 1862 to 1891. The paper based objects all date from the second half of the 19th century, and concern the relationship between Chinese and non-Chinese residents of Australia especially on the goldfields. The documents reflect the anti-Chinese attitudes that were prevalent at the time.

The Australian gold rushes had a significant influence in shaping the societies of the then British colonies including Victoria, New South Wales and Queensland. Amongst the changes was an increase in the number of non-Europeans, namely Chinese, within the broader community. This resulted in social tensions, violence, and legislative changes designed to restrict the numbers of Chinese in the colonies. When the colonies formed a Federation, one of the first pieces of legislation passed was the Immigration Restriction Act 1901, the basis of the 'White Australia' policy, which allowed immigration officers to discriminate on the basis of race.

Physical description

On display at the National Museum of Australia.

Object information

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