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Puget Sound weekly Argus. [volume] (Port Townsend, W.T. [Wash.]) 1876-1882, April 21, 1882, Image 1

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Persistent link: https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn84022761/1882-04-21/ed-1/seq-1/

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Port Townsend, Washington Territory,
Ten-- of wmflptfi~ufio per annum.
In advance; Six months, 01.50.
RAT ES os‘mizn'rlsmu:
One Inch. first insertion .. . $1.50
Each subsequent insertion . 50
'l‘mnsient advertisements. to INSURE
nsertion. must be awompanied by cash.
55' All Account: settled monthly 3
A: To That Chinese Question.
Agrceable to promise made last week,
we now proceed to a full hearing of
those irate laborers at Port Discovery,
who seem to think we have done Amer
ican laborers injustice. Under date of
April 12th, Mr. Edward P. Johnswne
writes as follow:
“A large meeting was held here last
night by the working men of this fines
to express their indignation at the ialse,
malevolent charges you brought against
the American laborers of the United
States and published in the ANGUS of
the 7th inst. You accuse us of bein
drunkards and gamblers. vicious nag
worthless‘. while you write of the vir
tues of the ‘Heathen Chineo‘ in a man
ner to exalt that favorite subscriber of
{ours above the ‘eommon American la
)orer’ who of course never subscribes
for a newspaper.”
We pause here to remark that if our
correspondent will kindly point out
the exact language wherein we accused
American laborersas a whole. of being
"drunkards and gamblers. vicious,
Worthless,” &c., we will retract such
statement; but until he does, there is no
use in discussing the matter. We never
made such a charge, and the gentleman
is accusing us wrongfully, to begin with.
Secondly. we have not been exalting
the Chinese above American laborers in
general, except in a few particulars, of
which more hereafter. As to the argu‘
ment implied that we ought toabuse
Chinese and exalt Americans simply be
cause our subscribers are from among
the latter, we will say that such ideas
run upon a very narrow track, tosay
the least. We have not been champion
ing the Chinese. except to see that they
get simple justice—a thing which they
do not got in the prejudiced discussions
among the bulk of American laborers
on the Pacific coast. Our friends should
remember that the Chinese are not nec
eisarily entitled to no credit marks sim
ply because the indignant laborers at
Port Discovery accord them none. Be
cause a particular course or line of ar
gument is popular, it is not" necessarily
j vml. Many politicians and editors on
this coast are afraid to say what their
knowledge and judgment dictate on the
Chinese question, simply because pop
ulnr prejudice to which they desire to
pander is so strong against the hen
thens. This is true of both political
parties, hence the discussion is almost
entirely one-sided. We are not blind
t) the fact that Chinese immigration to
the Pacific coast has reached a point
where it ought to be stopped. In places
it is interfering seriously with many
k’nds of skilled labor, and impoverish
ing the country by sending a great deal
of coin to China. The Chinese govern
ment has recognized this fact, and has
agreed by treaty that we may prohibit
the further importation of Chinamen
fora reasonable length of time. Con
uteus passed a bill prohibiting such im
portation for the period of twenty
years. President Arthul feels that such
a prohibition would be unreasonable
according to the language of the treaty,
and consequently a violation of that
treaty by mmhence his veto. He says,
and with good grounds, that we could
stop this immigration bya ten yearn’ re
striction clause. and net the treaty still
further modified or take each other
Hteps as seemed necessary between now
and ten years hence. His first duty,
hnWever. was to keep the pledged faith
of the nation inviolnte. The literary ao
r-iety at Port Discovery discussed the
Question and proved to the satisfaction ‘
0! its members that the recent bill i
nhonld have been signed. It is easy to
let upa man of straw and knock him‘
Fort Tb‘vnsend, W. T; Fridav, April 21, 188:3.
down. Where prejudice is so strong}
against Chinese the formality of argu-l
ment could easily have been dispensed
with. But to the letter. Mr. John
stone says:
“You remark the American laborer
smokes cigars, which he has aperfect
right to do if he pleases. but you say
‘nothing of the far more pernicious hab
‘it of opium smoking indulged in by
your friend from China. or of his gam
iling propensities which he carries so
far that he sometimes gambles himself
into slavery. You, as an editor, ought
to know of the Chinese gambling dens
which are to be found everywhere where
Chinamen most do congregate; but it
suited your purpose of those whose ax
you were grinding. to suppress the
above facts when you sent your false,
slanderous article to the press.”
Who said t 5 American laborer had
no right to smoke cigars? On the other
hand, who dares tell as we have no
right to call the American laborer’s at
tention to the fact that he would be
better off. healthier, more independent
and less liable to injury from the com
petition of cheap labor if he would
learn to spend less lor cigars, whiskey,
billiards, &c? We have not tried to
make Chinese appear to be saints or
faultless, and we are not ignorant of the
fact that many of them smoke opium,
or the gamble, &e. They Would
be a omm? of people if they had
no dissolute, dissipated ones among
them. Our friend must not conclude
that an omission to call attention to
these matters betrays either an igno
ranoe about them. a desire to suppress
them, or that we are grinding anybody’s
ax. Such insinuations on his part be.
tray the littleness of his mind rather
than injure us——-and he is welcome to
make them if they ease him any. They
are beneath contempt. Does it neces
sarily follow that we know nothing
about any given question because we
may not fully agree with Mr. J ohnstone
or his fellow laborers spent it? Rising
in would seem to imply as much. But
while we are on the point of gambling,
opium smoking, &c., would it not be
well to compare Chinese with Ameri
cans, since it is insisted upon? During
the Congressional agitation of the Chi
nese question in 1878-9, a vast amount
of reliable information was collected
from authentic sources by the Senate
committee to whom the noted “fifteen
passenger bill" was referred. Among
other things they found that "from
official figures. there are more Euro
peans engaged in selling liquor on the
Pacific coast than there are Chinese
selling opium,” and that “more money
is lost and won by white gamblersin
San Francisco every single day in the
year than by all the Chinese in Ameri
ca.” A ain. does our friend wish to be
understgod that all the opium used in
the dens to which he refers is used by
Chinese? Is he ignorant of the fact that
Americans patronise those dens largely
in San Francisco? Does he want us to
accuse him of “suppressing" facts and
grinding somebody’s ax? As to whether
our article was “false" and “slander
ous“ or not. let sensible readers judge.
No, since the issue is forced, we will
venture aguess that the very laborers
at Port Discovery, who are so indig
nant, gamble on an average twice as
much as the same number of Chinamen
would. This is an unfortunate point
to raise in attempting to demonstrate
the inferiority of Chinese. We quote
“In enumerating the virtues of the
Chinese. why did you not mention the
fact that they bring that delectable
d isease, the leprosy,_ with them, and fill
our towns and cities wrth abandoned
females who are held in a state of slav
ery, and sometimes murdered, by those
‘soher, thrifty, docile‘ friends of yours."
Our government has a perfect right to
quarantine against thc criminal classes
of Chirla. or of any other nation, and to
keep their lepers away. just as they
would refuse to allow diseased beef or
pork to he brought here. They do keep
them out as far as possible. If it were
not for the support of Chinese houses
of prostitution by white persons in our
towns and cities. those “abandoned fe
males“ would not hehrought here in
such numbers; so here again our corres
pondent has picked upa weapon that
cuts both ways. But we will not argue
this point. There is no difl‘erence of
opinion upon it. We do not defend
the Chinese in this matter and never‘
did. Further on we find this:
If you will read the Chinese bill
which has just passed both houses of‘
Congress, but has been vetoed by the‘
President. you will find .that it was in
tended to prevent the immlgratlon of
the Chinese men of all,nationalitiea,
therefore your statement that the ‘Chi
nese can easily go to some other coun
try and then come here‘ is all nonsense.
Really. Mr. Weir, I am surpised that
the erudite editor of the Anous knows
‘ so little of one of the leading questions
of the day (a case of the ‘ooel passer
who wants to beforeman‘)."
Why couldn’t {Chinamen become
British subjects, under British laws?
If they did, would we dare refuse to
allow such subjects to come to our
shores? The blind egotism of Mr John
! stone and his fellow laborers in assum
} ing such superior knowledge upon this
‘question amounts to sublime impu
fi deuce. Their logic is hardly worth an
iswering. Their spokesman further re
‘ lieves himself in this style:
“You say that ‘one of the most some
less arguments is that they will supplant
our government with one of their own.’
Are you so ignorant of the history of
Chinese that you don’t know that the
§gressive Tartar (or Chinese) overrun
urope until they were checked under
the walls of Vienna and then driven
back to their own flowery land? Their
present invasion of this countly is .a
[lieaceful one, and therefore more to be
( readed and in )re likely to be success
ful, especially when they have such sym
pathisers and friends as you tohelp
them to make good their footing in this
country.” ,
Again we stamp the above'sssilly,
senseless talk. It indeed by many
smart men merely as - sounding
bombast to tickle the urgleq'know
ing followers. It is used b. - Others be—
cause they don’t know any better.
Europe is a country small in area and
densely populated in comparison with
ours. There was not room for the
hordes of Chinese and for the Euro
peans too, hence the Tartars were driven
back by the more skilled and warlike
people. They have no idea of “imp:
sion" in the United States. They come
here to make money, and because the
great monopolies of this country want
their cheap labor. Our domain is large
enough to accommodate halt the Chi
nese nation, and then we could crush
them out by force if we chose. One en
ergetic Yankee would whip flve China
men on an average every time. The
idea that they can supplant our govern
ment on our own soil" is just so much
balderdash that men who pretend to
be intelligent ought to be ashamed to
entertain. In closing, Mr. Johnstone
“I was instructed by my fellow labo
rers at the meetinfillast night to write
to you and to DE AND a retraction of
the contemptible, false assertions you
published in your editorial. They al
so demand an apology for those asser
tions. the retraction and apology to be
published in your next issue of the An-
The above reasonable (?) demand
comesto us pregnant with the monu
mental cheek of a brass mounted gov
ernment mule. Permit us to ask if the
penalty for non-conformity will subject
as to be skinned, flayed alive, or simply
hanged? Because the storming party
may as well begin operations. This
happens to be afree country. and the
blood bought privilege of freedom of
the Press was never dearer than it is to
day. That privilege we enjoy in com
mon with other newspaper men—not
for the purpose of unlimited license and
abuse. but that we may have our say
without duress from a few laborers who
have a right to their say, who may have
misunderstood us. but who need not
waste their time in making “DE
MANDS." We have offered no afi'ront
to the white laborers of this goodly
land-—-though our well meant plain talk
may have been misunderstood by some.
We have said nothing but what we will
stand by. Until we do, retractions and
apologies will not appear in the Asses.
We are informed upon good authority
that those who instigated the indigna
tion meeting referred to were foreigners
themselves and not American citizens at ‘
all. We might have dismissed them by
saying that many such as they come
here. through the generosity of our
laws, and imagine in a short time that
they can “run the machine" themselves;
that such persons often arrogate to
themselves a bigger say in our national
afi‘airs than Americans bred and born—
even to denying the right of honest
newspaper criticism. But we have not.
chosen to treat them so.
It has been snappishly charged 1
that we know nothing about this ques- 1
tion. In view of this, let us see if we:
could not have said much more to the
credit of the Chinese had we chosen to
do so. In the course of political agita
tion during the past three years some in
teresting statistics have been collected
, about Chinese on the Pacific coast. 0!
ithese we may refer to a few points,
1 without desiring it understood that we .
iare pleading their cause. We have no
i sympathy, unless it be with the laborers
of our own race whose condition we
fain would improve by a good natured
growl occasionally on account of their
short-comings. We find as a fact, from
authority we dare not question. that the
65,000 or 70,000 Chinese now in Califor
nia pay annually over 815,000,000 into
the revenue of that state. Among the
items in an official document are the
following: $1,800,000 paid by Chinese
as duties in California during 1878;
freight and passage money paid by them
during same period to and from China
in San Francisco vessels, $600,000; rents.
&c., $1,000,000; licenses and taxes, $2,~
260,000; paid for American products,
85,000,000;' paid for water for Chinese
miners, 82,2ib,000; mining claims
bought by Chinese, $1,350,000. In the
opinion of an (ax-Surveyor General of
California the Chinese have increased
the value of property in that stateto
the neighborhood of $3,m000, and this
preperty is to-day owned by white men.
Without thei; aid the Unpn Pacific
Railroad w _ not have WW“ an
ten or ‘ years after it‘wa'e‘com
plated, was. They reclaimed 1,-
000, _ ' of California marsh lands.
raising ”value from $3 per acre to
about 8100. By these great works they
furnished employment to 500,000 or
morer’ntthis compels-L
law ofs‘d e 0 employment taken
away from white men through cheap
coolie labor? They are reliable in busi
ness. The late Senator Morton, of In
diana. while Chairman of the Senate
special committee on Chinese immigra
tion, in 1878, prepared a report from
which we will quoteafew items. On
page 797 is the statement of the cashier
of the Anglo-California bank to the ef- ‘
feet that the average business done with
Chinese per year in that institution
amounts to apout $1,500,000, and that
“they are always straight-forward.” On
page 858, Mr. McCondray, of San Fran‘
cisco, testified that his firm had dealings
with Chinese merchants to the extent of ‘
$600,000 a year, and that in 26years
they had not lostg dollarby them. We
quote the exact language of the gentle
man. As to criminals and paupers; we
find from reliable sources that in 1876
there were in San Quentin prison 1,158
convicts, as follows: 615 native Ameri
crns, 344 Eupeans and 199 Chinese. In
the hospital, the same year, there were
2431 patients, of whom 1809 were born
in Ireland, 1112 native Americans, and
11 were Chinese. In the almshouse at
the same time were 340 inmates, as fol
lows: American born, 148; born in Ire
land, 197; Chinese, NONEI We might go
on enumerating statistics. but it is un
necessary. Perhaps we don’t lrnow any
thing about this labor question. Per
haps our friends in Port Discovery can
send us a littleinformation to dispel
our ignorance. Perhaps the learned
debaters in their literary society have a
monopol-y of all the knowledge lying
around loose. Perhaps they may have
ventured beyond their depth (2‘) How is
it? Come again, Mr. Johnstone. Spit
on your hands, pin back your ears and
——wmle in. We’ll meet you half way,
land give you the benefit of all the
space you want. There are lots of strong
points against Chinese immigration
that you haven’t touched upon yet. We
pause for you to “trot ‘cm out." Give
us a specimen of your superior know].
edge upon “one of the leading ques
tions of the day."
FRANCIS W. James. our surveyor. has
just received from the east n Trunait n!
the Intent improved construction. Those
of our citimns who. as a preliminary to
building, are desirous of nnoortnining
tlm mrnom at city lots urrlninunilwz
work in liisline. can be nucummml'm-ul
promptly and at reasonable tutu-l. *
NO. 10
Dr. L. T. Seavey,
Office: Cornor of Water and Quincy Shula,
Port Townsend.W. 'l‘.
I. E. COHN, M. 13.,
Portland. - - - Oregon.
Ofllce hours - From 9 to In A. M. ltoBP. M.
Sundays. from 9 to It A. M.
UFFIUE —Unlon Block Room 26, Come: First
and Start: streets.
Surgeon for Oregon Railway and Navigation
Company. no'l-t!
IRON DALE AT 8. A. M.; Also (01'
WHIDBY ISLAND at 10:30, A. M,
For IRON DALE, It 4. P. M,
For Ire] ht or (usage. apply on board
3 L. g}. HASTINGS, .13.. ’
1m Master.
All kinds of masonry done. Any one de
siring work in my the w!!! be attended to
on short notice.
First Class ‘Vork Guaranteed
WAddress by letter at Port Town
send. W. ’l‘. Mt!
fl I 0
Bob White” Quail.
The undersigned ls desirous of obtain
ing l‘ortlle -- Vail» Walla Glme Club"
some of the “Bob Whltc Quail." for the
purpose of stocklng the country Eu: of
the Mounmlns.
Any reasonable prloe will be pald for
the dellvery in good condlflon in Port
Townsend of any number of these Qua“.
3:8 THOMAS 'l‘. MINOR.
Commission "and
Shlppmg Merchant, 55
Exchange Broker.
Ships Disbursed.
all“ and cum DllAl'll not“
It now nun.
on all parts of the UNITED STATES.
Wlll pay the highest price In com, for
aroma next door to Pit-Patrick’-
Ihoe more, Water 33., Port Townsend.
San Francisco onlco. I! k” lulu"
Pacific C oast
“"33"f..‘.‘iy'.fl:5‘:?.“.‘:a mm“
Well'o Flm’l a Go'- In".
The Company’s Steamshlps,
Geo. W . Elder,
[(EAI’I‘AIN 11. G. MORSE.)
Will ml] (or
Victoria, Port Townsend, Seattle, 'l'a
coma and UIYIIIBIII.
0! THE
10th 20th and 30th.
WTlm (‘mnpuny‘s Steamshlps will an“
from Scuttle for
San Francmco,
via Victoria,
On. or about the
98h, 19m and 22ml- ore-eh month,
[waving Victoria on thu
lath. 20th and 30th ore-ch month.
\th‘u tho ntlvurllwtl day of smiling falls 0|
Smut”. lhv 1 'mnmny‘! whlps will am“ on tho
l'nlhmlng day from \ lclol'ln.
Tlckul Am-nt for Scuttle,
n. 1.. 'l‘umu..~x. Jr,
Tlckot .\L(l‘nl for Port ’l‘owmend,
l-‘m- fro-lght or pumufi |l.4'.“')ll‘¥ltl‘l)ll\ LS
m-nornl Agent for l'ugetriound
Jamw, 1552.“.

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