San Francisco’s Chinatown In The 1950s: Fabulous Photos Show Streets And Everyday Life

Chinese immigration to the United States dates back to the middle of the 19th century. The Chinese arriving in San Francisco, who came primarily from the Taishan and Zhongshan regions and Guangdong province of mainland China, did so at the height of the California gold rush, and many worked in the mines scattered throughout the northern part of the state. Look at these historical photos that show the everyday life of Chinatown in San Francisco in the mid-20th century. Vote your favorites, and don’t forget to share.

#1 Two Chinese-American women come to have their fortunes told at the Chinese temple on Pine Street.

#2 Two chorus girls at the Forbidden City nightclub prepare for their act.

#7 Grant Avenue is lit up by the string lights and neon signs of restaurants.

#17 Chorus girls at Forbidden City show off their stuff.

#19 A chorus girl at the Forbidden City nightclub adds the finishing touches to her makeup.

#20 Parents greet their children after they finish school for the day.

#32 A customer receives her order from the butcher at Ying Fat Lung’s Chinese shop.

#33 A vendor slices off a chunk of lotus root for a customer.

#35 A little girl practices her written Chinese in a character-writing class.

#36 A lampost in the traditional Chinese style signals that you’ve arrived.

#38 A banner on Grant Street, San Francisco, welcomes visitors to Chinatown.

#39 The cutest little boy ever listening enthusiastically in class.

#41 A little boy at the Commodore Stockton School practices writing on the blackboard.

#42 A shop assistant at the Tai Ping Company boutique on Grant Avenue demonstrates a giant Chinese fan to an interested customer.

#43 Two women sample food at Johnny Kan’s restaurant.

#44 Five women dressed in traditional Chinese clothing read the day’s headlines.

#46 Nationalist Chinese and American flags wave side by side.

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Written by Jacob Aberto

Sincere, friendly, curious, ambitious, enthusiast. I'm a content crafter and social media expert. I love Classic Movies because their dialogue, scenery and stories are awesome.

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