Last updated on: 1/30/2017 | Author:

1880s – Anti-Chinese Riots Spread over the Northwestern States; Oregon’s Constitution Prevents Chinese from Owning Land

“In the 1880s, an economic depression on the West Coast put many people out of work. Some chose to blame the Chinese immigrants for their economic problems. They attacked Chinese businesses and drove entire Chinese communities out of town. Anti-Chinese rioting was especially bad in Tacoma and Seattle, Washington. Many Chinese Americans moved to Oregon at that time to escape the violence in other Northwest states. Oregon did not experience the violence that other states did. However, Oregon had its share of anti-Chinese sentiment. A riot was planned to force all the Chinese out of Portland, but it was stopped at the last minute by local officials. Oregon legislators supported the national anti-Chinese immigration laws. They also included language in the Oregon constitution so that no Chinese could buy or own land.”