Tag Archives: History

OPINION: The Voice Inside

by Patheresa Wells


“She stared at her father’s lifeless body, and the thoughts she could not voice dissolved into her blood, where they would stay with her for the rest of her life.”

 —Liu Cixin, The Three-Body Problem


There was a poem I started to write about my mother’s death but I could not finish it. I have probably started and stopped as many times as I take a breath in a day. I inhale in the breath of an idea but the exhale, the writing, doesn’t come. Maybe it is because I was there, alone, when she died. It was 2010 when she died during surgery at the age of 48. I was 30, 18 years younger than her. I was the only witness to her death. And like the air that could not make its way out of her after her final exhale, my words are trapped. They are stuck in my throat, that essential highway that brings us air, food, and water. That releases something I have always relied on: my voice. 

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OPINION: Spirit Returns 2.0 — Finding Solidarity at the Duwamish Longhouse

by Amanda Ong


“We were second-class citizens in our own land,” my grandfather used to tell me, perhaps the only time I saw him with a hint of a scowl. Our land then was Hong Kong, where Chinese residents were under British control for 100 years. As the original inhabitants of Hong Kong were Punti, Hakka, Tanka, and Hokkien, the island has always been ethnically Chinese. My grandfather seldom spoke about the marginalization my family experienced during their time in Hong Kong as a British colony and when he did, he was brief. When my mother was a child in the 1960s, our family made the decision to leave Hong Kong to be second-class citizens in another land, hoping for something called “opportunity.” 

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The Unspoken Truths Museum to Open at ARTS at King Street Station Gallery

by Melia LaCour


“Resistance, Resilience, Remembrance, and Liberation”: poetic words straight from the heart of multiple award winner, community scholar, ethnomuseumologist, and second-generation storyteller Delbert Richardson. His soulful words describe the theme of his upcoming installation, “American History Traveling Museum: The Unspoken Truths,” which will open at the ARTS at King Street Station Gallery on Nov. 16, 2021, and continue through Jan. 15, 2022.  

“My work is primarily geared for children and young adults,” Richardson shared. “No professional development, no white teachers. It’s really around identity development and self-actualization for Black kids, right? When we think about slavery and, historically, our story starting from 1619, then that becomes the placeholder of who we are and how we see ourselves and how we allow ourselves to be seen. So, I was determined to challenge that narrative. That’s what my museum does. It challenges that narrative based on my own story.”

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Juneteenth 2021 in Seattle: A Guide to Local Events

by Emerald Staff


Emerald staff rounded up local Juneteenth events so you and yours can easily find ways to participate both in person and virtually in celebrations, storytimes, cooking classes, and so much more!

Check back to this post as we continue to add more events that we hear about!

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PHOTO ESSAY: Best of 2020 — Emerald Photographers Pick Their Favorites

The South Seattle Emerald asked our photojournalists to pick some of their favorite 2020 photos shot for Emerald stories. From protests to pandemic responses to celebrations-despite-it-all, the images show not only a difficult year but also one filled with resilience, strength, and solidarity. We are proud to call South Seattle our home and grateful to our talented photographers for helping us capture our community’s special history.

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Book Review: Spirited Stone, Lessons from Kubota’s Garden

by Anne Liu Kellor


Who cares about gardens and landscape design right now, in a time of widespread grief and despair?

Let me reframe that question.

Who cares about a story of resilience, racism, community, cross-cultural connection, place, and poetry?

We do.

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COVID-19 in Native Communities: Recalling Past Trauma and Present Hope

by Matt Remle


“Within these late years, there hath, by God’s visitation, reigned a wonderful plague, the utter destruction, devastation, and depopulation of that whole territory, so as there is not left any that do claim or challenge any kind of interest therein. We, in our judgment, are persuaded and satisfied, that the appointed time is come in which Almighty God, in his great goodness and bounty towards us, and our people, hath thought fit and determined, that those large and goodly territories, deserted as it were by their natural inhabitants, should be possessed and enjoyed by such of our subjects.”

—King James I, The Charter of New-England 


The Great Dying

Every Thanksgiving, classrooms across the country learn about a group of religiously persecuted Christian reformers fleeing England in order to worship freely in the New World. These Pilgrims likened themselves to the Israelite exodus from Egypt, a people chosen by God to be guided across the Atlantic to find, conquer and lay claim to their promised land. Upon arrival in what would become Plymouth Colony, the Pilgrims found a “promised land” that did not need to be conquered like that of Canaan, but rather a ghost town littered with untended fields, empty villages and skeletal remains of the original inhabitants. For the Pilgrim colonizers this was proof of God’s divine plan.

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OPINION: “Lessons Learned” Hide the South Vietnamese Perspective

On this 45th anniversary of the twelve-year war waged in Vietnam, we’re presenting voices from those belonging to the community most impacted by the war, and who remain an integral part of our city — Vietnamese Americans. Locally, the Vietnamese community has created a thriving Little Saigon in what were once abandoned and dilapidated buildings around Seattle’s 12th and Jackson. 

They have also built businesses and homes that helped revive the White Center neighborhood. Because of the generous sharing of their culture and cuisine, every high school student knows that a banh mi is a great after-school snack, and pho has become a household word. 

The Vietnamese community continues to touch every aspect of our society, from artists, composers and writers to doctors, nurses and other health care workers on the front lines of the coronavirus pandemic and all walks of life. In the past few days, the War has been mentioned only in the context of the deaths from the coronavirus surpassing the number of American deaths in Vietnam.
 
To reflect upon the past and contemplate the future, we share two voices from local second-generation Vietnamese Americans who have distinguished themselves in their work and community volunteer efforts — and who bring their unique perspectives on a war with ongoing repercussions: State Senator of the 34th District, Joe Nguyen, and longtime journalist and Vice President of Community Engagement & Marketing for the Washington Technology Industry Association, Julie Pham.

by Julie Pham


It’s April 30, and this year marks the 45th anniversary of the Vietnam War. Typically, this anniversary invites a flurry of opinions on “lessons learned” from the Vietnam War (just Google it and you’ll see what I mean) coupled with how those lessons should be applied to whatever foreign military, political, diplomatic situation the U.S. is currently mired in.

As a trained historian, I object to the practice of extracting “lessons” from history as if it’s possible they will keep us from sacrificing future lives and wreckage. Wars are not the result of faulty human strategy. Wars exist to challenge excess and unchecked ugliness within humans. It’s too easy — and arguably manipulative — to see a “failed” venture in hindsight and say, “we should have known better.” We live to learn from our failures. 

Continue reading OPINION: “Lessons Learned” Hide the South Vietnamese Perspective

45 Years After the Fall of Saigon: A Coming of Age

On this 45th anniversary of the twelve-year war waged in Vietnam, we’re presenting voices from those belonging to the community most impacted by the war, and who remain an integral part of our city — Vietnamese Americans. Locally, the Vietnamese community has created a thriving Little Saigon in what were once abandoned and dilapidated buildings around Seattle’s 12th and Jackson. 

They have also built businesses and homes that helped revive the White Center neighborhood. Because of the generous sharing of their culture and cuisine, every high school student knows that a banh mi is a great after-school snack, and pho has become a household word. 

The Vietnamese community continues to touch every aspect of our society, from artists, composers and writers to doctors, nurses and other health care workers on the front lines of the coronavirus pandemic and all walks of life. In the past few days, the War has been mentioned only in the context of the deaths from the coronavirus surpassing the number of American deaths in Vietnam.
 
To reflect upon the past and contemplate the future, we share two voices from local second-generation Vietnamese Americans who have distinguished themselves in their work and community volunteer efforts — and who bring their unique perspectives on a war with ongoing repercussions: State Senator of the 34th District, Joe Nguyen, and longtime journalist and Vice President of Community Engagement & Marketing for the Washington Technology Industry Association, Julie Pham.

by Joe Nguyen


In the past week the Vietnam War has been making headlines here in the United States, but not because it is the 45th anniversary of the Fall of Saigon. In just a few short months, the American death toll from the COVID-19 pandemic has now surpassed that of a war that spanned nearly two decades.

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OPINION: A Page from Washington’s History of Standing Up to Fascists

by Guerry Hoddersen

An important part of a recent story by Seattle Times reporter Erick Lacitus — “Bucolic Whidbey Island surprised at skinhead headlines — and recent Lynnwood assault” (Dec. 31. 2018) — left out a major part of the history of fighting Nazis in the Pacific Northwest.

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