September 11 Digital Archive

Henry Chung

Title

Henry Chung

Source

transcription

Media Type

interview

Chinatown Interview: Interviewee

Henry Chung

Chinatown Interview: Interviewer

Florence Ng

Chinatown Interview: Date

2004-02-26

Chinatown Interview: Language

Cantonese

Chinatown Interview: Occupation

CCBA

Chinatown Interview: Interview (en)

Q: Today is February 26th, 2004. This is the Chinatown Oral History Project of Museum of Chinese in the Americas. Today, we invited Mr. Henry Chung, former president of Chinese Consolidated Benevolent Association (CCBA). The interviewer is me, I-ching Ng. Mr. Chung, when were you born?

Chung: I was born on [September 29th] 1919.

Q: Where are you from?

Chung: I’m from Mei county in Guangdong province, China.

Q: Why did you come to the United States?

Chung: Actually I went to India in 1937. My brother-in-law had business over there. I went there to help him out. When World War II ended, I went to New York, the United States from India.

Q: Why did you decide to go to India at that time?

Chung: At that time, I just finished my high school. My father asked me to go to India and helped my brother-in-law in India. So, I went there, to India. Besides, at the time, the Japanese invaded China and waged a war in China.

Q: What did you do in India?

Chung: I went to India and worked at my brother-in-law’s leather factory. Later on I worked for an agency and came to the United States in 1949.

Q: How was life in India?

Chung: Life in India, well… For the Chinese there, besides leather factories, they operated lumber yards, import and export companies, grocery stores, almost every kind of business…with daily wages ranged from about four to five dollars a day. At that time, during war time, many ships stationed in India and could not embark their journeys. Because of that, many sailors and Chinese people had to [temporarily stay] in India.

Q: Among the Chinese in India, were they mainly comprised of people from Canton or Hakka?

Chung: They were mainly Cantonese.

Q: Ok. Mr. Chung, I’d like to know, when you were in Mainland China…How was your family? Could you please talk about your family? How many family members were there in your family?

Chung: My family? My parents passed away, and so were my eldest brother and my other brothers and sisters. But, I have a son and grandchildren in mainland China.

Q: Ok. What did you expect when you first come to the United States?

Chung: When I first came… This was how I came to the United States. I originally intended to return to my hometown. However, when I was staying in United States, the communist was fighting with Kuomintang in mainland China, and September 18th incident [signify the beginning of Japanese invasion] broken out. Hence, I was stuck in the United States and could not return to China. [I wanted to return to China but the Communist had already crossed the river and occupied the mainland.]

Q: That is to say, during your boat ride…?

Chung: Yes, initially I decide to go to Hong Kong from the United States. But since the Communists already went south from the river and occupied the mainland, I stayed here and didn’t return.

Q: Was it easy to enter the United States?

Chung: It was not so easy. I bought ship tickets back in India... It was not so easy. [I only intended to wait here until the war was over, so I stayed in New York.]

Q: When did you come to the United States?

Chung: In 1949.

Q: Did you live in Chinatown then?

Chung: When I first came, I worked in a restaurant. My friend referred me to work as a waiter in the restaurant. After that, I came to work in Chinatown and worked as a secretary, later the president of Hakka Association.

Q: That is to say, you did not work in Chinatown from the very beginning? Where were you…?

Chung: Initially, I learned to be a waiter in a Chinese restaurant [on Long Island] and later worked [formally] as a waiter.

Q: Where was the restaurant?

Chung: The restaurant [that I worked later on] was in New Jersey.

Q: Were there a lot of Chinese people in New Jersey?

Chung: Oh, only very few. However, we only worked there. Every week we returned to New York.

Q: How did you go back, with……?

Chung: We had a car. The restaurant picked us up by the car. When we had our day-off, we came back to New York by car.

Q: There were no long haul buses [in Chinatown] as we have now, right?

Chung: No, it wasn’t that convenient.

Q: Okay, Mr. Chung, what was your first impression when you came to the United States?

Chung: When I first came, I thought the United States was quite good. There’s plenty of freedom. So long as you did not break the law and not do any harm to others, you can do whatever you want. It was relatively free and that was good. Especially when mainland China had a civil war and we were not able to return. I had no choice but to stay here.

Q: Was it the first time you were involved in the restaurant business?

Chung: At the beginning, I started as a waiter. Then I ran my own restaurant.

Q: Oh, you ran a restaurant?

Chung: Yeah, I worked in the Hakka Association as a secretary and later as its president. I also opened stores: florist, café, and later opened my restaurant.

Q: Okay. When did you finally move to Chinatown and live there?

Chung: I lived in Chinatown all the time. That is to say, apart from the time working as a waiter in New Jersey, I lived in Chinatown all the time.

Q: How was Chinatown back then?

Chung: The Chinatown in New York was sparsely populated and not as busy as in Hong Kong. It was already considered busy when there were eight to ten people walking on the streets. Now both sides of the street are full of pedestrians. [Now is much more crowded than before.]

Q: How big was Chinatown? How many streets were there?

Chung: The old Chinatown was comprised of Mott Street, Bayard Street and Mulberry Street. The Italians lived on Canal Street. Later on, Chinatown expanded from Mulberry to Canal Street, then to Houston Street. The development has been more rapid during the past ten to twelve years. Now, the Chinese store signs are everywhere. Chinese are everywhere.

Q: Mr. Chung, what was the main group of immigrants in Chinatown?

Chung: At that time, it was in 1962 when President Kennedy said China had an exodus of refugees. He increased the immigrant quota to 25,000. Hence, 25,000 people arrived. We had record of it, since the National Chinese Welfare Association organized the arrangements [according to President Kennedy’s Act]. An [annual] quota of 25,000 [immigrants] was assigned to the Asian countries, including China. The same quota remained until now.

Q: Were Cantonese the main group of immigrants?

Chung: At the beginning, they were mainly Cantonese. But now, there are people come from everywhere, especially folks from Fujian.

Q: Did you anticipate that Chinatown would undergo such a rapid development?

Chung: I did not expect it back then. The government and some property developers wanted to demolish the Division Street. But they did not do it in the end. Instead, the government encouraged renovation, and offered loans to residents to fix the apartments. That was what happened.

Q: When was that?

Chung: That was the year 1972.After that, the president was Janson (Johnson) and launched the anti-poverty project.

Q: Was Division Street mainly occupied by the Chinese?

Chung: Back then, Division Street was nicknamed “Hat Selling Street”. The Jewish sold women’s clothing and hats on both sides of the street. The Chinese did not know the real name [of the street] and just called it the “Hat Selling Street”. People knew it was the place to buy hats, so they kept calling it as the “Hat Selling Street”.

Mrs. Chung: They sold clothing too.

Q: Break here?

Photographer: Go ahead.

Q: Mr. Chung, How long did you work for the first restaurant?

Chung: I worked there for over a year. Then I came back to work as a secretary [for Hakka Association].

Q: For Hakka Association?

Chung: I worked as a secretary for Hakka Association for a little while. Then I worked for other restaurants.

Q: Were there many Hakka people?

Chung: At that time, the Hakka people... There were a few hundreds of us, Hakka people.

Q: Ok, Mr. Chung. In 1950s, did immigrants mainly speak Cantonese?

Chung: [They were] Mainly Cantonese speakers. In 1950s, since a lot of Chinese became U.S. soldiers and obtained permanent residence. So they went back [to China] and got married. Then more people came [to the United States]. So there came a lot of people from everywhere, not only the Cantonese, but also Chinese from Shanghai and many more from the other provinces.

Q: For Chinatown residents who spoke different dialects, were there any communication problem, in Chinatown?

Chung: It was like…this. In the old days, most people spoke their own local dialects, such as Toishanese and Cantonese. So for people who spoke northern dialects, they had to write things down when they went shopping, since the [store owner] had no time to listen to them. These people even spoke Cantonese with a heavy accent, sometimes they said, as a joke: “You, Cantonese people are discriminatory against us, Northerners. When it came to shopping, you would rather serve others who spoke Cantonese, even though we are here first.” For people who were doing business, time is precious. If you can speak [their languages], the store owners could hand you the things right away. But if you can’t, you had to write it down, and it took time for them to read, so, gradually, they only served those who spoke their dialects and not the Northerners. In fact, they just wanted to do business quicker, didn’t want to waste time.

Q: The northern dialect means Mandarin?

Chung: It depends, some people spoke Mandarin, others could speak Cantonese – that could also be called the dialect.

Q: Oh, really?

Chung: So northern dialects mean, the language you spoke to the northerners. Now, most of us speak Mandarin.

Q: In those years, I remembered you mention that, Chinese movies dubbed in Mandarin were very popular?

Chung: Mandarin became a popular dialect in 1960s, since many immigrants who came from mainland China and Taiwan spoke Mandarin. Gradually more people spoke Mandarin. Also, at that time, everybody loved to watch movies dubbed in Mandarin and fewer people watched Cantonese movies. Everybody loved to watch Mandarin movies – they could learn the dialect at the same time and entertain themselves. So the movies really helped to promote the dialect in Chinatown…in terms of learning the language.

Q: Mr. Chung, I’d like to know, remembered you mention the grand opening of the building on Division Street? When was that?

Chung: The building on Division Street…the building of the association for Hakka people, the Tsung Tsin Association was opened in 1953. In 1951, we started the renovation and by October 10th, 1953, the Tsung Tsin Association was ready to be opened.

Q: Mr. Chung, I’d like to know, you mentioned operated various businesses. Actually which one did you prefer most? Or were there challenges in all the industries?

Chung: At that time, the industries for Chinese were restaurants and laundromats. Next came the garment factories. There were not that many garment factories in the 50s. In the 60s, gradually there were more garment factories. So most of the women among the new immigrants could work in the garment factories, it helped many families to make a living. Since the Chinese immigrant needed a job, and his wife would help out by taking another job [as a garment worker].

Q: So you opened a restaurant and what els?

Chung: I opened a restaurant, a florist and a café.

Q: Did you open the café at the same time?

Chung: Yes, I had a spacious store front, so I divided it into two parts, split it into a florist on one side and a café on the other side.

Q: Where was the store?

Chung: On Division Street, right underneath Tsung Tsin Association- where the Hakka Association used to be. I worked there as a secretary. Since at that time, not that many people would rent a store front and do business. There were not that many people like that.

Q: If they did not rent store front, were they peddling on the street?

Chung: No, they were no peddling on the streets. It was only within the last decade that the peddlers started selling products on the streets.

Q: Mr. Chung, I’d like to know. Besides the Hakka Association, were you involved in any other community work?

Chung: Besides the Hakka Association?

Q: Did you involve in community work, such as….?

Chung: Yes, I did. I worked for Lin Sing Association, the Lin Sing Association of Eastern coast of the United States.

Q: What position did you hold?

Chung: I was the president.

Q: When was that?

Chung: I was [the Lin Sing Association] president in 1968. I became the president of the Chinese Consolidated Benevolent Association (CCBA) in 1964. In 1968, I was the president of the Lin Sing Association. Then in 1972 and again in year 2000, I was elected as the president of Chinese Consolidated Benevolent Association.

Q: Mr. Chung. Could you please tell us, in different era, what were the different problems that Chinatown were facing. For example, in 1960s when you were the CCBA president, what were the needs you thought need to be addressed?

Chung: Oh, in 1960s, at that time, the restaurant business of the Chinese was thriving. So did the garment factory and they could also work in the laundromats. So the hand-laundry was phrased out and its business diminished. As we just said, there were garment factories… and gradually there were more garment factories.

Q: Did Chinatown face any problem that need to be addressed too, in 1960s?

Chung: It was hard to say. CCBA had many responsibilities and it couldn’t accomplish everything. A that time, in the 60s… actually in the 50s, we had to fundraise to gather capital to build the building of CCBA…

Q: That’s now [the existing building]…?

Chung: We collected over $900,000 for this building at 62 Mott Street. We gathered almost one million dollars. So, the building was completed in 1962.

Q: Oh, in the beginning…..?

Chung: We moved in, between1962 to 1964 that we moved in there. Initially, we didn’t work at that office, we used the office of Lin Sing Association. But by the time I became the president, we moved in [the new building] to work. I bought all the furniture and other items. We moved in there to operate the CCBA till this date.

Q: You were the first president who worked in the new CCBA building?

Chung: Yes. That was also the first time I became the CCBA president.

Q: When you first became the president, did you have any plan to improve Chinatown during your 2-year term?

Chung: At that time, think about it…. If you want to accomplish something, you need financial support, especially for concrete measures. I helped whenever I could, within my capacity.

Q: Okay.

Chung: If you didn’t have financial support, you couldn’t say…you couldn’t push too far.

Q: Did it take you a long time to fundraise for the building?

Chung: It took us several years. Fund raising began in 1955, in 1955 we started the fundraising campaign.

Q: Was the donation mainly from Chinese immigrants?

Chung: All the Chinese immigrants and soldiers made contributions. We had donors from San Francisco, and from the mid-region such as Chicago, and from Los Angeles, Boston, etc. People from all the places sent in their donations. Therefore, we called the building Zhong Hua Da Lou [Building of the Chinese].

Q: Ok, shall we take a break here?

Photographer: Okay, go ahead.

Q: Mr. Chung, could you share some stories from your childhood in mainland China?

Chung: I went to Singapore with my father when I was seven. We lived there for one year. Then we moved to Malaysia. My father ran a lumber business there with his partners. I went to school there until I was a teenager and returned to China. After I went back to China…I graduated from high school when I was 17. Then I went to India, at the time, Japan invaded China and the “Lu Gou Bridge incident” occurred, so we fled to India.

Q: Mr. Chung, you spent your life in several places. Where would you consider as a “home”? Which place gives you the feeling as your homeland?

Chung: Home, how to say? Oh, home. To tell the truth, Southeast Asia was hot and filthy, it had lots of…garbage. Unless you lived in the residential area of the white people, it would be much cleaner. But Singapore was pretty good, Singapore was very clean. But within the Republic of Malaysia, since we lived in the mountains with my uncle there to collect rubber…As a kid, I wandered around with other children. Apart from going to school, we had nothing to do. So I went back to China when I was a teenager, finished secondary school, then went to India, where my brother-in-law lived.

Q: How was the Mei county in Guangzhou like at that time? What kind of town was it?

Chung: Mei country in Guangdong. Mei county itself was a town. In the old days, our Mei county was not so prosperous. But now, it developed very well. The areas where the fields used to be, are now covered with buildings, they used to be fields. At the same, many bridges were built. In around 1937, the Meijiang Bridge was built, once the Meijing Bridge was built, they started to build other bridges.

Q: Was Mei county an industrial town or an agricultural town?

Chung: An agricultural, agricultural, agricultural town. But now we don’t have that much agricultural land left, we had lots of mountains, not enough flat lands.

Q: Were there many people Mei county move out, migrated to other places?

Mr. Chung: Yes, many, many of them [left]. Many of our Hakka people left for the army or become merchants, so they all left to do business. The women stayed home and worked in the fields.

Q: Ok, take a break here?

Q: Mr. Chung, I’d like to know, in the 60s, was illegal immigrants a serious problem in 1960s?

Chung: It was like this, in 1960s, illegal entry was common, but we shouldn’t say it was serious.

Those who came to the United States were fleeing from political upheavals in China. They couldn’t live, so they had to flee and boarded on the ships to the United States or other places. Once they landed in the United States, they stayed here to live. Therefore, at that time, the Immigration and Naturalization Services would come to arrest a whole lot of people. I was the president of CCBA at the time, so I worked together with others from the National Chinese Welfare Association and their committee members, and attorneys to…

[Phone ringing]

Q: Let’s take a break.

Chung: Where were we before?

Q: The problem of illegal immigration in 1960s...

Chung: Yes, illegal immigration. So that way, many of us Chinese opened restaurants and we needed many of those immigrants who landed ashore to work in the kitchens. So, when [immigration enforcement officers] arresting these workers, we would have nobody to work in the kitchens, nobody. If you hire somebody else [i.e. Americans], there may a language barrier, it won’t work. So we went down to the headquarter of the Immigration and Naturalization Services in Washington D.C., and to the Congress and pleaded for them. We met with congressmen and told them, “could we allow them to stay in the country temporarily, since they [fled] because of political upheavals in China and there’s no way they could live there. That’s why they fled to here.”
I said…you Americans put emphasis on humanitarianism, democracy and freedom, and I said: “I hope they can stay here.” A congressman said, jokingly, “Mr Chung, you should ask your men to marry our girls, the American girls, that will solve all the problems. Once they are married, they can become citizens.” That was a joke.

Q: Was it easy to convince those officials in the beginning?

Chung: We, in the old days, tried to convince them and they sympathized with these people. Look, even him, president Kennedy would allow so many people into the country [through amnesty], they really sympathized with these immigrants. So he said, “How about this, we give you a five-year period. He can stay in the country, by the time he stayed here for the fourth year, he would have earn enough money by then. He could then go to Hong Kong or other places to make a living.” So this way, he said, “They could come in again and stay for four years, when it reaches the fourth year, we will send them away again.” It was like that.

Q: Did they call the document a “work authorization” card, like the one they issue now?

Chung: There was no work authorization [card]. Actually, the Immigrant and Naturalization Services would issue a document and state the [length] of his stay and whether it was already expired. The paper would also state whether he was allowed to stay in the country with a parole.

Q: Actually, did you know how many people benefit from this new policy, did you make a head count?

Chung: I did not document that, how do you calculate the number? I would say, in the past the officers would deport groups of four hundred to five hundred people. We would negotiate with the congressmen according to the number of immigrants who were arrested.

Q: So, the first time you lobbied for four to five hundred people. How many after that?

Chung: I don’t know how many after that. We would met with them and ask them not to deport anymore people. So they would stop and would not deport any people temporarily.

Q: Mr. Chung, I’d like to know, when the first time you… became the president of CCBA in 1960,

apart from this policy that benefited many Chinese people here, could you please talk about other tasks you accomplished during your term at CCBA? For example, you mentioned that there was a school?

Chung: Other accomplishments in 1960s. Do you mean our elementary and high school?

Q: Yes……

Chung: [We offer] Chinese classes, to teach Chinese. Even the captain of the Fifth precinct came over, the policemen came here to learn Chinese.

Q: Oh really? Where do the classes take place?

Chung: The school is in the upper floors of our CCBA building.

Q: How many students are there? At that time, how many students….

Chung: Students? There were about 2000 of them.

Q: That many?

Chung: Now we have more than 3000 students.

Q: The elementary and high school combine together?

Chung: Yeah.

Q: Do you have anything to add on the things you have done in 1960s?

Chung: What about 1960s?

Q: Do you want to add anything, perhaps other accomplishment of CCBA?

Chung: What, what do you mean by that?

Q: Let’s talk about 1970s, when you served the second term as the president of CCBA. Was the building of Confucius Plaza your biggest project?

Chung: In 1970s, the Confucius Plaza project. It started all because of Mr. Luo Jinshui [aka Luo Deming]. He read from the newspaper that the city government has a lot…for the Chinese to build residential buildings. Therefore, once he saw that, he applied for it. In order to apply, he had to set up Hua Yuan Company. But when he went and applied for it [they required] a credit report and had to them how long the company has to be established. He said the company was new. Then they [the officials] said: “If your company is new, how can you convince us that it’s reliable?” So in that case, they said: “Why don’t you go back and see if there’s a huge association or organization can represent you in this matter?” Therefore, Mr. Luo came to meet me and I called for a committee meeting at CCBA. Several of us met with then New York city mayor Lindsay and he approved the project. He said, “If it’s CCBA, of course it will work.” And Lindsay talked to other commissioners as well. I talked to the mayor, and he agreed to us and let CCBA work on the project. He was confident that we could do it. Therefore, we had a meeting at CCBA, after the meeting and passed on the project to the Chinese Chamber of Commerce of New York. There are 60 organizations under the umbrella of CCBA and the Chinese Chamber of Commerce of New York is one of them, and also the biggest one, that’s why we gave it to them.

Q: Actually, was it right that Confucius Plaza was specially built for elderly and not for the other age groups?

Chung: It was not only for the elderly, but for the middle income group, middle income. Those with middle income, not necessarily for the elderly people. Initially, we wanted to build residential units for the elderly, but there was no appropriate location. We planned to acquire the sport at 110 Henry Street. We bought it but sold it later on because it was too small and too old. The plan did not realize.

Q: When was the Confucius Plaza built?

Chung: Confucius Plaza was built in 1927, 27 [actually 1973], from 1973 to 1974 and finished in 1975. We moved in and lived here in December of 1975.

Q: Was it easy to gather funds to build this……?

Chung: The capital was loans from the federal, state and city government. We have to pay back the loan in 50 years.

Q: Oh, a 50-year term loan?

Chung: Also some of the loan was from the Chinese operated banks, such as the former Jing Rong Ying Hang, United Oriental Bank. The funds were mainly from bank loans.

Q: How much is the rent for an apartment?

Chung: Um…[monthly rent of an apartment is about 200 dollars]

Q: How much was the mortgage?

Chung: Um… [The building management paid for the mortgage. The tenants paid the rent.]

Q: If I pay for the mortgage for an apartment, how much would that be?

Chung: How much? A middle income tenant used to pay monthly rent of $283.

Q: Is your rent expensive now?

Chung: Oh, here? For an apartment, for an apartment, we pay at least $200 for this apartment.

Q: Per month?

Chung: Per month. The government subsidizes part of it.

Q: Half of it is subsidized. How many apartments are there in Confucius Plaza?

Chung: Over 700 units. The sum we just mentioned is for the mortgage. Oh actually the money was a loan from the federal government, not from the bank. Actually the Chinatown Day Care Center at that time was funded by loans from Jing Rong Ying Hang and Chinese American Bank.

Q: Was housing a serious problem in Chinatown back then?

Chung: Housing, housing was a problem but was not as serious as it is now. Now, not have many apartments are available. In the past, even though there was a shortage but one could still find an apartment if you searched for it. Now, that’s impossible.

Q: Take a break here?

Q: Mr. Chung. Now, let’s talk about the 9/11 incident. You actually witnessed 9/11, didn’t you?

Chung: Yes, at that time when 9/11 happened, at around 8:40a.m., the first building was hit by the plane hijacked by the terrorists. I saw it in Confucius Plaza, I saw the thick smoke coming out from the buildings. But I did not think it was done by the terrorist and thought it was accidentally hit by a plane. Soon after, the second plane hit the building…

[In Hakka dialect- Mr. Chung asked Mrs. Chung not to interrupt.]

Q: Were you in CCBA or at home when this happened?

Chung: I was downstairs [at Confucius Plaza]. I was about to go somewhere and saw the scene as soon as I came out of the building?

Q: You mean at the Confucius Plaza?

Chung: Yes, I saw it. Then I tried to use my cell phone to call, but it didn’t work. Some of my friends with whom I was supposed to go to a place together came, he also said his cell phone did not work either. We did not know what goes wrong. Then, the people walked slowly to our direction, from World Trade Center to Chinatown. More and more people walked [to Chinatown], like a wave of people. They walked uptown to the 10-something streets.

Q: What action came to your mind when 9/11 happened, what did you want to do?

Chung: When 9/11 happened, I went back to the office and pondered on that. I wasn’t quite sure what happened. At that time, the planes…and the heavy smoke, the smoke slowly blew towards Chinatown. I couldn’t figure out how serious was the loss, not clear about it. So the next day, it turned out that the incident was very serious, because many policemen, national guards were everywhere, at the intersections of streets and set up road blockades. They blocked the streets and would not allow people to cross them, unless you show them your I.D. to show that you live there. You could show them your I.D. and they would let you in. If you didn’t have any I.D., you couldn’t go through. So many residents complained: “We don’t have any status [i.e. they are illegal immigrants] and you won’t let us in.” So I phoned the captain at the fifth precinct and asked him to co-operate with me. He said: “How about this, as long as they tell them [the policemen] where they live, for those who don’t have any I.D., I can offer some documents.”

So, it made the situation a lot more convenient. For those who were [in Chinatown] to deliver goods, if they had a signed paper- the approval from the fifth precinct saying they were doing business in the area, his truck could go pass the streets. Therefore, it made it easier. The situation was so chaotic and very tensed. The streets were empty, like a dead city. No pedestrians, not a soul on the streets. So some people from other countries would call me and inquire: “What’s happening over there?” Sometimes I would tell them, since luckily the telephones at CCBA were working, they all worked. So…

Q: Only the phones at CCBA worked and others were out of order?

Chung: I called for an emergency committee meeting at CCBA. We agreed that CBA donate $50,000 and asked other community agencies, store owners, the Chinese public to donate money for disaster relief. That was to say, those affected by 9/11 would get help. So, in total, we collected more than $300,000. Through public appeal at the radio stations, we raised $2 million. Exactly how much [in total] I could not remember.

Q: That was a lot.

Chung: The radio stationed also donated a lot of money. We presented the donation to the state governor. We gave $250,000 to September 11th fund. We also gave donations to the police, emergency medical staff and other medical services. We also gave it to the Red Cross. We gave away more than $300,000 in total.

Q: Did all the relief work operate inside the CCBA building?

Chung: Yes, that was for collecting donations. Elaine Chao, the Secretary of U.S. Department of Labor from the federal government, also sent some of her staff to us. The State government, city government also sent workers to us. Legal advisors also came. Verizon the phone company, the Red Cross, and an agency called FEMA also came to us. So we gave them office space to work in the building of CCBA. Everyday thousands of people came in and out of the CCBA building.

Q: In order to rebuild Chinatown, did the government offer any funds to help Chinatown?

Chung: To rebuild Chinatown, we had two funding. To revitalize Chinatown, as we Chinese keep saying, the business plummeted and was hit hard. So we advertised in Daily News, every Friday we placed an advertisement, it costs $40,000, only for an advert. Besides, we made a sign[age], a sign[age]…that didn’t cost any money. It was given by an architect, he gave it to us. To revitalize Chinatown, we staged lion dances, lion dance every week, and hired people to dance, all that cost money.

Q: That was mainly for promoting tourism in Chinatown?

Chung: Yes, to promote tourism in Chinatown. Elaine Chao, the secretary of U.S. Labor Depart came here twice. The last time she visited, she gave $1 million funding for job training services to agencies such as the Chinatown Manpower Project, Asian American For Equality, Chinese-American Planning Council and others. The $1 million was for that purpose.

Q: From secretary Elaine Chao?

Chung: Yes, secretary Elaine Chao.

Q: Mr. Chung. How did 9/11 affect Chinatown? Can you tell us more about that?

Chung: Oh. Chinatown was dead and had no business at all for a few days. The impact was huge, the loss was great… at that time, it was of utmost importance that…anyway, we all said. A few stores closed down because of 9/11.

Q: 9/11 happened more than two years ago. How do you find the progress of rebuilding Chinatown?

Chung: To rebuild Chinatown… the new CCBA president, Mr. Ng, has continued the works. We initiated a good beginning and that was very good, we are all working together to revitalize Chinatown. To revitalize Chinatown, we have to take one step at a time, gradually, Chinatown will regain its glory. On the other hand, we have to work on tourism, to promote Chinatown and attract more tourists to visit here. And for garment factory industry, it will be best if the government can put in more effort to support it, to revitalize the garment factory industry. Now, the garment factory has been sluggish, I know many workers are out of work now and need to get social welfare from the government.

Q: Do you think there’s any other area in Chinatown that needs to be addressed immediately? In general, is there anything that needs to be improved?

Chung: In order to improve that, it will be best if the housing unit would be allowed to be built higher. Now the tallest building can only be a seven- story one. It is better to build a more than twenty- story building and the streets could be widened. We used to have a plan, a proposal to revitalize Chinatown. We found somebody to draft the proposal, there was a proposal. Also, to expand tourism and also to help the garment factory industry. Also, we need to build more housing…and to repave the roads, to widen the roads. That has been our goals, these are our goals.

Q: Mr. Chung, after 9/11 happened, has it changed your perspective on the United States?

Chung: Oh, this 9/11..for us, Chinese people, we have been very united this time. So, it had a huge influence on us, we Chinese, were much more united. The loss to the United States was so huge, but she [the country] also tried to find ways to help us…such as the losses… and now, there is LMD[C]

Q: LMDC [Lower Manhattan Development Council]?

Chung: LMDC, it offered financial aids…for example, the alley…

Q: So, you…?

[Tape 009- side1B]

Chung: Yes, yes, yes. The United States is the best in the world. Where else can you find a better place than here? Especially for the elderly people. Elderly people enjoy a lot of welfare here.

Q: That means, you are very happy with your life here?

Chung: Yes.

Q: Take a break here?

Q: Mr. Chung, many associations and organizations in Chinatown are divided into the leftists and the rightists and would not communicate with each other. Since you have been in Chinatown for so long, can you come up with ways to solve this political divide?

Chung: Um…in Chinatown, those people from mainland China came here to make a living, right? Actually we could all live in peace and work together. But at that time, the leadership of mainland China held different ideas against overseas Chinese, and they persecuted many Chinese. That really changed the climate. So these people, deep down in the heart, felt the Communism was scary, like a terror. But, with different generations here… they gradually changed their attitude and realized that they shouldn’t feel shameful of those things [or incidents] happened in the past. So that was the change. Therefore, in 80s to 90s, the tension was relaxed. They would not boycott each other, and could tolerate each other sometimes. At least they would just refuse to talk to each other, and wouldn’t boycott each other like they did before. It didn’t happen much. Therefore, I, when I became the president for the third time [at CCBA], I felt that we are all Chinese, the same people, above all, we are all brothers when we are abroad, so we should make peace. Very often, for instance, at the time of Grand Street closure, we went up to the MTA and talked to them, and we had meetings, and even brought people over there to stage protests- when that happened, no matter they were leftists or rightists, everybody joined in unison and negotiated the issue. When CCBA held the meetings, they all came. So, gradually, the atmosphere became less tensed and the hostility died down. So, right now, they would contact each other, and like that, and changing the views they used to hold at each other

Q: Mr. Chung, now that Grand Street subway station has just reopened, do you expect more improvements on Chinatown traffic and other areas from the government? Such as [the closure of] Park Row?

Chung: In fact, we should be… when I was [the president of CCBA], I said that the government, the police car park should stay open and allow the public to use it. Once the car park was closed, it would have an adverse impact on businesses in Chinatown. People from all the places used to be able to park, now we have not one place to park. All the parking spaces on Mulberry Street, Bayard Street, Mott Street are now used by the government employees from the Justice department and the police precinct. We, the residents, have nowhere to park at tall. The government should tackle the problem, they should build a bigger car park, the government officials should be allocated a specific spot to park, and those spots should be given back to the residents. That would be the proper measure. For Park Row [closure], we were working on it and still working on it now. They have to re-open it. But now, the mayor has been dragging on the issue and won’t re-open it. Once it’s re-opened, there will be a lot more businesses. When the roads are blocked, the traffic would be chaotic, so people won’t even want to come into Chinatown for dinners.

Q: Mr. Chung, where is the police car park you mentioned?

Chung: It’s right behind here. That is, is that called Precinct Plaza? Or the Federal Plaza?

Q: Is that where the city hall is?

Chung: It is nearby, next to the Police Plaza.

Q: We take a break here.

Photographer: Okay.

Q: Mr. Chung, I’d like to know. I know you were the president of CCBA, which is the largest organization in Chinatown. Sometimes you have to welcome officials and politicians from mainland China or Taiwan. Have you ever feel you were in an… awkward position?

Chung: For this question…well, for politicians from Taiwan, we treat them the same, we have connections with them, there’s no problem at all. For those from mainland China, we used to have no contact, no communication and no… But in recent years, mainland China has become more open-minded, so there has been contact and communication [between us] sometimes. So long as we don’t touch on politics and only discuss issues related to the status of overseas Chinese, things like that. They [the mainland officials] also know that we are not in an easy position to talk about that [politics]. A few years ago, when I went to mainland China, I have been to Beijing, Shanghai, Nanjing and other places, everything was good… with those cities.

Q: Would you consider strengthening the relationship? Especially the economic ties?

Chung: This is a mutual, and natural development. China needs gain the trust and help from overseas Chinese. In the past, they called overseas Chinese ‘foreigners’. Now they changed the attitude. They call the overseas Chinese as Gui Qiao [returned Chinese] when they return to their homeland. Therefore, she will gradually change. We, hope that she [mainland China] can at least learn half of what U.S. is doing, and have freedom. Let trade flourishes, allows free trade, don’t set up all kinds of restrictions. Therefore… we have been here in the U.S. for decades, we are used to being free, so if you want to exert control…therefore, when a lot of people who just arrive in the U.S., they would say the U.S. is no good, but once they stay longer and get used to the lifestyle here, they will enjoy the goodness of the U.S. lifestyle. They will know that the U.S. is full of freedom, something they could not comprehend before.

Q: Mr. Chung, what are the pictures in your hands?

Chung: This one is taken at the grand opening of the Grand Street subway station. Because in 2001, 2001, the Manhattan Bridge had to be repaired and there was roadwork with the D line at the Grand Street subway station. Therefore, we went up to the MTA and tried to negotiate with them, we want them to shorten the closing period. At that time, they said it would be closed for four to six years, we all felt that that’s far too long. For those people, residents and nearby businesses, it would cause so much inconvenience. You should shorten the closure, to two or three years. Therefore, after two and a half years, about two and a half years, it was completed. And a few days ago it reopened, that was the 22nd of this month it reopened.

Q: Okay, I see.

Photographer: Anything else? Go ahead.

Q: Mr. Chung, I noticed there are many pictures you took with celebrities in your house. Can you tell us more about these pictures?

Chung: Sure.

Q: This is Madame Soong Mayling, right?

Chung: Yes. And this is me.

Q: Oh, this is you!

Chung: This is Madame Soong Mayling and this is ambassador Zhou Shukai. This is Soong T.V.[Madame Soong’s brother].

Q: Oh, Soong T.V.. When did you meet them?

Chung: In 1972.

Q: She come to New York, right?

Chung: She came to New York to treat her skin problem, for skin treatment.

Q: Oh, okay. What’s your impression of Madame Soong?

Chung: She’s very elegant and was a true first lady of a country. When she helped the president Chiang Kai-shek and attended all those meetings, such as the Cairo conference, she contributed a lot to China’s diplomacy. For example, her war efforts against Japanese invasion, she came to the Congress and gave a speech; came to the Chatham Square and spoke in front of the overseas Chinese here…she took the America by storm. A Chinese woman, could be so selfless and went abroad to resist the Japanese invasion… Therefore, we all have high respect of her, she is a truly great person in this world.

Q: She passed away this year. Did you directly….?

Chung: She passed away this year. I paid my respect to her in the church and family held services, we attended the services.

Q: There was a service for her in Chinatown…

Chung: A memorial service in a Catholic church in Chinatown.

Q: Okay, Mr. Chung, you have been to the home of Madame Soong, in upstate or uptown, right? Uptown?

Chung: Yes, uptown near 80-something street and the Fifth Avenue.

Q: At the time when you met with her, did she express her expectations of the overseas Chinese here?

Chung: That was a private visit, [it was arranged by] consulate general, Mr. Ye Guobin, who was a relative of her. He said to me, “Mr. Chung, I’ll bring you to visit Madame Chiang.” I gladly said yes. So we went together to visit Madame Soong. She was painting, drawing plum blossoms and orchids. She was not so old back then, in her 60s or 70s. She said, “I am learning to draw flowers now, what do you think?” I said her painting was very nice. Then I asked how she felt about the Chinese immigrants her. She said, “The Chinese immigrants contributed a lot to the country [China] during wartime, during the resistance of Japanese invasion, many donated money and joined the army.” She appreciated what the Chinese immigrants had done. She said she hoped more Chinese immigrants would visit Taiwan more often.”

Q: When did you meet her?

Chung: In 1972, the next day after I welcomed her at the airport.

Q: Take a break here?

Q: Mr. Chung, let’s talk about your family life?

Chung: Oh, at the moment, I am living with my wife here, two elderly. My son is till in China, he has a son, two grandchildren of ours. One of them, the eldest grandson married last December. So…when he [my son] wanted to come here, there’s no diplomatic ties between the U.S. and China, [the U.S.] hadn’t recognize China at the time, so there’s no way he could come over. By the time he could come, he is already running his own business and has no time to come. Now I’m old, what can he do…so still he hasn’t come here yet.

Q: Really?

Chung: He sent money to me. That’s it.

Q: But deep in your heart, have you felt that the life in the United States would…?

Chung: [………]

Q: Mr. Chung, how many children do you have and how old are they?

Chung: My son? My children? He is in his 60s now.

Q: Oh, how many [children do you have]?

Chung: One. One son and two grandchildren. The grandchildren are now in their twenties. The eldest one married this, this year.

Q: Have they ever come and visit you? Meet you?

Chung: No, never. In the past, there’s no diplomatic tie between mainland China and the U.S., so when they have diplomatic relationship now, my son is running his business and has no time. Therefore, they still haven’t been here. I went back to China two years ago, I went to China with my wife and met them.

Q: So, they all live in Mei county in Guangdong? What’s their business?

Chung: My son is in the transportation industry and repairs vehicles.

Q: You have been in the United States for so many years, so you haven’t seen your son for a long time. Don’t you miss him?

Chung: We talk over the phone.

Q: Talking over the phone……

Chung: Write letters, talk on the phone and so on.

Q: In fact, a lot of people in China want to come to the United States. Since you have the chance, it’s kind of strange that, why your son…was it because your son was not willing to come? Or it doesn’t matter at all?

Chung: He wants to come but he is getting old. What can he do here? It will be hard to start all over again.

Q: Or maybe, if the grandchildren want, will your grandchildren come over here?

Chung: They want to come. But, let’s see, it all depends. First of all, they are still young and besides, they just graduated from college.

Q: What is your expectation from your family- your child and your grandchildren?

Chung: What kind of expectation… If he, he can take care of his family, that is good. If he can work in his homeland, it is good too. Let’s wait and see.

Q: Even when you talk to them over the phone, you would still miss them. Do you go to China often and visit them?

Chung: We’re planning to go this July or August if there is a chance. But it depends on our feet, whether we can walk or not. We both fell last year.

Q: Oh, really?

Chung: I fell down, downstairs at Confucius Plaza in April. I stayed at the hospital for a month. Now I walked slowly. She fell in September at Bowery.

Q: Oh, fell down at Bowery Street……

Q: Ok, stop here.

Chung: I don’t know what else to say.

Q: Now that you are retired, what do you usually do everyday?

Chung: Apart from going to the CCBA, I attend some social gatherings. Besides, I accompany my wife at home most of the time. To stay with my wife.

Mrs. Chung: I’m in my 80s now. Where else can I go?

Q: Mr. Chung. I’d like to know this, a lot of people say that there’s a long waiting list for people applying for housing units at Confucius Plaza, it’s very difficult to get in. Is that true?

Chung: Yes. It’s because there’re two to three thousand people on the waiting list for the Confucius Plaza.

Q: Waiting list?

Chung: So, it’s very difficult, it’s a long wait.

Mrs. Chung: Some wait even until the second generation.

Chung: Some of them if they do wait that long, they may [have it]…..

Q: If one has to wait, how long usually is the waiting time?

Chung: Some wait for twenty years.

Q: Twenty years? Then, you must feel you are the lucky one now?

Chung: No, actually we had the unit right from the beginning…It’s because, the Chinese Chamber of Commerce was a member of CCBA. So I filled out a form and of course [my application] was processed quickly. It wasn’t that emotional. They would notify you… At that time, a lot of people submit their applications, but in the end they didn’t want it. They said the units were expensive. At that time, the rent for other apartments were about fifty to sixty dollars, but [here, the rent is] seventy to eighty dollars for a unit. Now, [the rent for] our unit here is over two hundred dollars…

Q: They charged over two hundred dollars at that time?

Chung: Yes, even to this day, it’s still over two hundred dollars.

Q: Oh, the price hasn’t changed for all these years?

Chung: It used to be over two hundred fifty dollars, two hundred fifty dollars.

Q: And now the rent is?

Chung: It is now over two hundred eight dollars. The price has increased. An increase of five dollars, sometimes.

Q: Only a small increase after all those years? That…

Chung: The building has been subsidized by government. There’s government subsidized, with money from the federal, state and city governments.

Q: Mr. Chung, I’d like to know that, East Broadway has undergone rapid development. How was East Broadway like back then?

Chung: In the old days, East Broadway was occupied by Italians and other immigrants. There were not that many stores, and not even Chinese people. But after the 80s, or the 70s, gradually more people lived there, by the 80s, East Broadway was saturated. Most of the buildings are owned by the Chinese. In the old days, [the Chinese] rented their places there.

Q: Ok, Mr. Chung, do you have anything to add?

Chung: That’s about it. I cannot remember a lot of things.

Q: Okay. Don’t worry. Thanks for your time today.

Chung: Fine. You are very welcome.

[End of Session]

Chinatown Interview: Interview (zh)

<p> 問︰二月二十六日﹐這是紐約華埠口述歷史計劃。今日我們請到中華公所前主席鍾僑征先生接受訪問的。訪問的人是我吳翊菁。鍾先生你是幾時出世的﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰我是一九一九[年九月二十九日]出世的。</p>
<p>問︰你是那裡人﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰我是廣東梅縣[人]﹐在中國。</p>
<p>問︰你是怎樣來到美國的呢﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰我在一九三七年的時候去到印度﹐我姐夫他有生意在那兒﹐所以我去幫他做生意。以後呢在世界第二次大戰結束以後呢﹐我就從印度到來美國﹐New York。</p>
<p>問︰當初你為什麼會想去印度的呢﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰那時﹐當時剛剛我讀完中學嘛﹐我老竇要我去印度我姐夫那兒幫手﹐所以我便去印度。適逢又是日本人又是打仗﹐同我們中國打仗。</p>
<p>問︰那你在印度做甚麼﹖</p>
<p>
鍾僑征︰我在印度那時﹐我在我姐夫的皮[革]廠做[事]﹐但係呢﹐以後我又在一個機關度做事。所以做到來美國﹐一九四九年來美國。</p>
<p>問︰那當初在印度的生活是怎麼樣的﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰印度的生活呢﹐就…我們中國人來講呢﹐即是﹐有皮廠之外呢﹐有那些工廠呀、做木[材生意]呀﹐有那些做生意出入口呀﹐有那些… 各種鋪頭[有些人]做雜貨店買賣呀﹐都﹐ 那時候都好[每日工資大約] …四、五元的。那時人相當多﹐打仗的時候… 一打仗的時候呢﹐好多船停[泊]到印度呀[不能出海]﹐所以那些海員又多﹐所以我們中國人呢舊時相當多[暫時停留]在印度呀。</p>
<p>問︰在那麼多中國人當中﹐是否譬如廣東人最多呢、或者客家人﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰是廣東人最多。</p>
<p>問︰Ok。 鐘先生我想問下﹐你在大陸的時候呢﹐你屋企… 可不可以講一下你屋企呀﹖你屋企有幾多人呀﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰我屋企﹐我的父母都過[世]後囉﹐而我大佬亦過[世]後﹐我的姊妹兄弟。但係呢﹐現在我有兒子、孫呀都在大陸。</p>
<p>問︰Ok, 當初來美國你抱著一個怎麼樣的期望﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰我當時來﹐經過… 我當時來美國是這樣的︰我本來想返鄉下﹐來到這兒﹐美國﹐因為剛剛在大陸又…中共又同國民政府軍隊打仗啦﹐所以發生九一一﹖ 戰事﹐<br>

後來我停在美國沒有返去。[本來想回大陸去﹐因中共已經渡江﹐就在美國停留。]</p>
<p>問︰即是﹐你是不是否坐船途中 …</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰我即係﹐我返香港的船呀嘛﹐所以我來到這兒 ﹐我便沒有返去。<br>
[我本來是住美國返香港的﹐由於中共亦渡江南下﹐我便沒有返去。]</p>
<p>問︰即當時入境美國是很容易的事﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰係。 唔係﹐唔係話好容易﹐我那兒有買船票來﹐經過的。<br>
[絕非容易﹐主要是想等候時局平靜之後才回去﹐便在紐約停留了下來。]</p>
<p>問︰你幾時來到美國﹖一九﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰一九四九年。</p>
<p>問︰那時你是否在Chinatown到住呀﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰個陣時初初來到因為是在餐館做事﹐我朋友介紹我去餐館做waiter。以後囉﹐便返來唐人街做事囉。在客家會館做秘書﹐又做主席。</p>
<p>問︰即是你開頭時﹐不是直接在華埠這兒工作的﹖你在‥</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰我開頭在[ 長島唐人]餐館[學]呀﹐[後來才正式]同人餐館打工呀。</p>
<p>問︰那餐館在那兒﹖</p>
<p>
鍾僑征︰[後來的]餐館在New Jersey。</p>
<p>問︰那時的New Jersey 華人多不多﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰噢﹐那兒好少﹐唐人少﹐華人少的。不過我們做工‥一個星期返去一次去New York。</p>
<p>問︰你怎樣返去﹖你有甚麼‥</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰我們有車呀﹐有餐館有車接我們過去呀‥off的時候﹐便又返出來﹐送我們出來。</p>
<p>問︰ 沒有好像現在那麼方便有長途巴士﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰舊時沒那麼方便啦。</p>
<p>問︰ok。鍾生﹐你來到美國﹐ 對美國的第一印象是怎樣呢﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰初初來到﹐自己覺得美國是不錯的。因為覺得呢﹐樣樣都好自由︰任得你做甚麼﹐總之你不犯法、唔對人家不好呢﹐你就可以自己做。相當自由﹐所以覺得又唔錯。所以尤其是大陸又打仗﹐都沒法子﹐唔返得去﹐便在這兒居留下來。</p>
<p>問︰那﹐做餐‥你那時是否第一次做餐館?</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰ 第一次做我﹐但是[先做]企檯呀﹐做waiter。以後我自己做[開]餐館。</p>
<p>問︰哦﹐你自己開餐館﹖</p>
<p>
鍾僑征︰Yeah﹐ 因為我在客家會館做秘書又做主席。我便又開鋪頭﹐開花鋪呀、咖啡室呀﹐以後便開餐館。</p>
<p>問︰ok。 你那時﹐你幾時才真正在華埠住呢﹐譬如﹐或者在華埠生活呢﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰我一直都在華埠住﹐即是除了話去New Jersey做waiter以後﹐出來又…都在華埠住。</p>
<p>問︰那當時﹐當年紐約華埠是怎樣的﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰當年紐約華埠呢﹐人相當少。不是話像現在好似香港有那麼多人來來去去。舊時人﹐有十個八個成日在街道行來行去算好多﹐好高興的樣子。現在來講﹐現在街的兩邊都塞滿了人﹐ 在sidewalk那裡﹐所以比以前差得相當遠啦。<br>
[現在比以前擁擠得多。]</p>
<p>問︰當時的華埠有多大呀﹖ 譬如有那幾條街﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰當時華埠呢﹐即是勿街、擺也街、Mulberry 街呀‥Canal街那兒。過了<br>
Canal街都是意大利那些人多。現在呢我們發‥ 中國人的唐人街呢發展到Mul...Canal街過去那邊﹐上去啦到Houston, Houston街上面去了。現在發展得相當快速啦。最近這十幾二十年來發展得更快﹐就到處呢我們中國人的招牌呀,那些中國人呀來來去去都是那麼多人﹐現在。</p>
<p>問︰鐘先生﹐那當時華埠的移民是甚麼人居多呢﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰當時‥舊時﹐就是一九六二年呀Kennedy 總統話大陸有逃亡﹐逃亡潮的時候呢﹐他就開放話給二萬五千人來嘛。所以來了的二萬五千萬人﹐我們曉的﹐叫做全美華人福利總會。總會呢就根據他的﹐Kennedy總統法案就申請話﹐以後俾這個額數給我們﹐即是亞洲人呀﹐我們中國人呀等。所以[每年]有二萬五千人[移民﹐一直]到現在都是這樣。</p>
<p>
問︰那譬如以前是不是廣東人最多的﹖</p>
<p>鐘僑征︰以首先就是廣東人最多﹐但是現在﹐現在目前來講呢﹐就各方面的人都不少了啦﹐尤其是現在福建來的鄉里特別多。</p>
<p>問︰其實當年你有沒有預計過華埠他日會發展得那麼快呢﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰那時﹐未想到的。當時的時候呢﹐這個Division街呢政府都想拆落來﹐有些地產商想拆囉﹐後來沒有拆﹐政府就鼓勵這些人呢‥ 就舊屋翻新呀‥即是貸款給你﹐你就來修理﹐這樣啦。</p>
<p>問︰那時是幾年前的事﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰那時﹐七‥七二年以後﹐好似呢個Johnson 做總統﹐anti-poverty ﹐ anti- poverty 的時候。即係話反貧計劃﹐有一個反貧計劃那時候﹐anti-poverty 的時候。</p>
<p>問︰以前Division 街是否都是唐人啦﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰以前呢就叫做賣帽街﹐即係呢猶太人呢‥呢條街呢兩邊都是賣女人衣裳和女人帽呀﹐所以我們中國人呢街名唔知道甚麼街名﹐就話賣帽街﹐就知道哪兒賣帽﹐知道噢‥賣帽‥賣帽街就這樣叫下去﹐賣帽街。</p>
<p>鍾太︰賣衣裳呀﹐他們。</p>
<p>問︰ Break here?</p>
<p>攝影師︰Go ahead。</p>
<p>
問︰鍾生﹐你在第一家餐館你做了幾耐呀﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰我第一個餐館做了年幾呀﹐然後返來[在客家會館]做秘書。</p>
<p>問︰客家會館﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰客家會館做[完]秘書便無做囉。無做呀… 做完秘書﹐便又返去做下去其他餐館做囉。</p>
<p>問︰那時客家人多不多呀﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰那時客家人呢﹐都‥ 都有有幾百人啦我們客家﹐有好幾百人啦。</p>
<p>問︰Ok, 鍾先生﹐當年,即是五零年代啦﹐是不是移民的通常講廣東話的比較多呀﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰講廣東話多﹐因為五十年代呢那時候﹐因為我們中國人當美國兵啦﹐當兵然後他們有身份囉﹐所以便返去娶太太囉﹐所以這樣又來多好多人囉。而各方面人都有﹐不只我們廣東人囉﹐有些上海呀﹐其他地方省會的人都有好多嘛。</p>
<p>問︰他們譬如有不同的方言啦﹐溝通上有沒有問題呢﹐在華埠﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰都…這樣的﹐有時呀初初呢﹐就好多﹐就來到時後呢方言上多數講台山話、講廣州話。所以有些好似講北話的人呢﹐有時候買東西時他用筆寫呢﹐他因為方便慢慢聽你們講下、學下你們的廣東音呀﹐所以北佬他有時﹐講笑話呀︰「你們廣東人呀歧視我們這些北佬﹐即是賣東西呢你不算邊個﹐人家後來來的﹐你拼命給他﹐我們不給。」<br>

因為做生意的人﹐他時間好寶貴﹐他識講的﹐他要乜隨時可以講得﹐隨時便給他囉。你呢不識講的用筆來寫﹐寫又看﹐又花好多時間﹐所以便慢慢俾人識得講的人﹐ 然後再來俾呢個北佬唔識講的。其實就不是這樣的﹐他因為他為著做生意快些俾人家不想阻時間。</p>
<p>問︰北話即是國語﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰係﹐有些講國語﹐講北話﹐有些講廣州話又是北話。</p>
<p>問︰哦﹐係呀﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰ 所以呢北話呢﹐講同那些北方的人就講話北話﹐北話啦。現在多數講國語囉。</p>
<p>問︰當年呢﹐是不是﹐ 聽你講流行國語片﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰就‥六十年代就國語呢就開始流行囉。因為呢那些有些國內呀那些出來的人﹐即是多數那些台灣人來容易些﹐那些講國語的逐漸多。同時那些國語片呀﹐個個都鍾意看國語片呀﹐所以呢就廣東戲呢都逐漸減少廣東片。因為大家鍾意看﹐一方面他又可以學國語﹐一方面又可以看電影嘛﹐所以唐人街呢對電影都幫助好多‥就講學話來講。</p>
<p>問︰鍾先生我想問一下﹐當年呢你話Division 街是甚麼時候正式開幕的﹖</p>
<p>
鍾僑征︰Division 街的樓‥客家的樓‥崇正會的呢就一九五三年開幕‥五一年就拿過來裝修嘛﹐ 五三年十月十號開幕那個﹐崇正會的樓‥</p>
<p>問︰鍾先生﹐我想問下你﹐你講過話你做過很多不同的生意啦﹐其實你鍾意哪一個行業多一些﹖或者各行業有甚麼辛酸史呢﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰那時的行業呢﹐我們中國人呢一個餐館﹐一個衣館。過左就係﹐車衣廠。</p>
<p>車衣廠五十年代不多﹐六十年代的車廠逐漸多囉﹐所以好多我們新移民來到的婦女就可以在車衣廠到做﹐ 對中國人的家庭來講補助好大。因為他要一份工作嘛﹐他太太如果出來幫一份做一份工嘛。</p>
<p>問﹕那你自己是開餐館和開…</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰開餐館、花鋪﹐同咖啡店。</p>
<p>問︰咖啡店﹐同時間做﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰即是﹐我一間鋪頭大間﹐我就分成兩面﹐一邊做花鋪、一邊咖啡shop這樣。</p>
<p>問︰那個鋪頭在哪兒﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰就在Divison 街﹐就是呀﹐就是崇正會樓下﹐即是我客家會館﹐我在那兒做秘書﹐所以我﹐因為那時後好少人租鋪﹐那時做生意的人又不是好多的時候。</p>
<p>
問︰他們不租鋪﹐是不是在街邊擺檔多呢﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰不是﹐無街邊擺。那時候很少街邊擺檔的﹐是現在近這十多年來街邊擺檔的多。</p>
<p>問︰鍾先生﹐我想問一下你﹐除了客家會館之外﹐你有沒有做其他的公職﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰除了客家僑團﹖</p>
<p>問︰你還有沒有做其他的公職﹖其他的‥</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰我有呀﹐聯成公所呀﹐美東聯成公所呀。</p>
<p>問﹕你是做﹐做甚麼職位﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰做主席呀。</p>
<p>問︰幾時﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰一九六八年[做聯成公所主席]。我一九六四年中華公所做主席呀﹐一九六八年就聯成公所做呀。以後又一九七二年又做中華公所主席呢﹐就現在零零…二零零年都是呀二千年呀。</p>
<p>問︰鍾先生﹐你可不可以講一下﹐不同年代﹐譬如紐約的華埠有甚麼不同的問題﹖譬如六十年代呀﹐你在中華公所做主席﹐你見到有甚麼問題需要改善的呢﹖</p>
<p>
鍾僑征︰噢﹐六十年代呢﹐那時呢﹐那些中國人呢做生意﹐那些餐館業呀那時好旺﹐衣館又係可以做﹐又有laundromat 呀其他呢﹐所以衣館變成淘汰了。所以這生意少些。所以呢我們話頭先講﹐話車衣業呀﹐ 那兒又逐漸就… 衣廠多囉逐漸逐漸多…衣廠﹐車衣廠囉。</p>
<p>問﹕那時華埠有沒有甚麼問題呀或者需要改善的地方﹖六十年代﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰因為那時呢好難講﹐因為中華公所本身呢肩負任務﹐想做事呀都唔做得來。那時六十年代呢﹐五十幾年呢就我們籌款蓋中華大樓‥</p>
<p>問﹕即是現在‥</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰籌到九十幾萬﹐現在六十二號Mott Street的中華大樓﹐籌到就有九十幾萬﹐差不多壹佰萬呀。所以就蓋好樓呢﹐一九六二年成功呀完成了。</p>
<p>問︰哦﹐剛剛開始…</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰搬入去﹐就是呢六二到六四年呢﹐那時候搬入去﹐但是未在那兒辦公﹐是借聯成公所辦公。但我做主席呢﹐我就搬入去辦公。就我買傢私呀﹐各種用的東西我買。所以那時就搬入去那裡辦公囉﹐中華公所到現在。</p>
<p>問﹕哦﹐你是第一個中華公所會長在那個大樓辦公的﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰我第一次做中華公所主席就係。</p>
<p>問﹕那時你剛剛新官上任﹐你有沒有想那時有沒有想﹐在兩年在這兩年內要做的事情去改善華埠的生活呢﹖</p>
<p>
鍾僑征︰那時呢﹐有時候可能…你想﹐頭先講的你想做呢都你要有經濟才做得來…即是其實見事做事﹐如果有甚麼事情我便來做囉﹐這樣囉。</p>
<p>問︰Ok。</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰因為你經濟無呀﹐你又唔想話做點樣來去…太過用來做嘛。</p>
<p>問﹕即是當年籌款都籌了很久﹖籌這筆錢﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰ 籌…就 建立的時候。係呀﹐籌了幾年啦。大概是五五年開首﹐一九五五年開首籌備籌款呀。</p>
<p>問﹕主要都是僑胞呀‥</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰所有僑胞都‥軍人來捐款啦。三藩市我們都有人匯捐﹐中部呀 —中部 即是芝加哥呀、羅省呀、波士頓呀﹐各地都有捐款來。所以我們叫做中華大樓。</p>
<p>問﹕Ok, shall we take a break here?</p>
<p>攝影師︰ok go ahead。</p>
<p>問﹕鍾先生﹐我想請你講一下﹐你以前在大陸生活的童年往事﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰我七歲的時候呢就跟我的先父呢就去呢個新加坡﹐試了一年﹐以後呢就入馬來西亞聯邦那兒﹐去美羅埠到住﹐因為我老竇在裡面做木材生意呀﹐同那些朋友合作做生意嘛﹐所以做呢﹐我便在那兒 讀書讀到十幾歲返去大陸﹐返去大陸呢﹐以後十七歲呢﹐我們中學畢了業﹐我們又去到印度﹐那時適逢就是日本人打…盧溝橋事變時候﹐我們便出去印度啦。</p>
<p>
問﹕鍾先生﹐譬如你在很多的地方都住過啦﹐你覺得﹐哪一個地方你覺得叫做一個家﹐給你一個家的感覺呢﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰家呀﹐點樣﹖啊﹐home。老實講﹐在東南亞的地方呢﹐都…一方面是熱﹐第二方面沒有那麼乾淨﹐沒有那麼乾淨﹐好多那些‥垃圾﹐垃圾很多﹐除非呢西人住的地方呢比較乾淨些。不過新加坡又不錯﹐新加坡又一直都很乾淨。不過如果馬來西亞聯邦入面呢﹐因為我們住在山坡那兒﹐同我唐叔那些在山坡割那些樹膠呀﹐我做小孩住在一起﹐我四圍去小朋友﹐除了讀書之外無事做﹐又我十幾歲回大陸﹐讀中學﹐讀完便就來美﹐印度囉。[去印度﹐我姐夫處。]</p>
<p>問﹕你可不可以講一下廣州梅縣當時是怎麼樣的城市呢﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰廣州[東]梅縣…我們‥梅縣就是一個城市呀。我們梅縣呢舊時入面呢不是很繁榮﹐不是好繁榮﹐不過現在來講不錯﹐舊時的田段呀﹐現在都蓋了戶﹐舊時全是田段。同時呢橋呀又不多﹐那時一九三七年左右呢就開始來建梅江橋﹐梅江橋蓋起來以後﹐逐漸就再蓋其他的橋。</p>
<p>問﹕梅縣是不是一個工業城市﹐還是一個農業城市呢﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰農業﹐農業﹐農業城市。不過我們現在農業地方不多﹐山多﹐山多地少。</p>
<p>問﹕其實是不是梅縣[田少人多]有好多梅縣的人都…客家人到外邊移民﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰係﹐多數﹐多數。我們客家人呢好似從軍呀﹐去做生意呀﹐就這樣﹐出門去做生意呀。婦女就留在屋企呢幫手耕種田地呀。</p>
<p>
問﹕Ok, take a break here?</p>
<p>問︰鍾先生﹐我想問一下﹐六十年代呢非法移民的問題是否很嚴重呀﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰這樣﹐呢個六十年代﹐非法入來的呢﹐就即是好多﹐又唔可以講嚴重。因為來到美國呢都是因為在大陸上呀﹐那些動亂﹐他沒法子生活﹐所以要逃出來﹐就借呢個船有些到美國或者到其他地方嘛。所以來到美國﹐他留下來生活囉。所以呢那時移民局便成大批來帶走囉﹐所以舊時適逢我做中華公所主席﹐我便同福利總會的那些人呀﹐理事長呀那些負責人呀律師﹐就去…</p>
<p>[電話鈴聲]</p>
<p>問﹕休息一下先。</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰頭先講到哪兒﹖</p>
<p>問﹕六十年代非法移民的問題‥ </p>
<p>鍾僑征︰呀係﹐那些非法移民呢﹐就這樣﹐我們中國人開餐館那麼多啦﹐他那些上岸上來的多數有些人做廚的﹐所以便遇著那些人帶他走呢﹐即我們餐館便無人做廚囉﹐無人囉。你請其他人﹐又語言上又不對﹐講不來呀。所以我們到Washington DC移民總局向他請求囉﹐同埋要去國會哪兒﹐見國會議議長囉﹐就是將這個非法移民的人呢﹐好不好呢暫時就保…准他在這兒暫時在居留先﹐因為他在大陸上動亂呀﹐<br>

他沒法子在哪兒生活﹐所以他出來的。所以我…你美國講人道主義、民主自由的﹐我話呢︰「希望你能夠留下來。」他有一個議長講笑﹐他說︰「Mr. Chung﹐唔該你marry我的女仔﹐美國的女仔便好囉﹐ 結婚便保留他身份囉。」講笑呀。</p>
<p>問﹕其實當初游說這些政府官員容不容易呀﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰我們﹐從前囉﹐游說他囉﹐即是他又好體恤這些人呀。即是話﹐他真係﹐連Kennedy他都放那麼多人入來囉﹐所以他便好同情﹐所以他說這樣啦︰「給你試五年的時間﹐他在這裡住下來啦﹐等他四年﹐做到有四年工﹐有賺有錢啦。他返去香港或者邊度去謀生啦。」這樣嘛。他話︰「再來的﹐又留落四年﹐我又等到四年﹐又來又送他走。」就這樣嘛。</p>
<p>問﹕當時他們這種是否叫工作證﹐我們現在叫工作證﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰無工作證的。他即是﹐移民局會給一張單﹐即是話他… 他…他居留過期的﹐他張紙寫明他parole出來呀﹐或者點﹐有個parole嘛。</p>
<p>問﹕其實﹐你知不知﹐大概有幾多人﹐因為呢個﹐呢個新的政策受惠的啦﹐有沒有統計過﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰我都無‥無﹐點樣統計﹖舊時就話有四、五百人一齊押解﹐我們根據平時跟那麼多的人去同移民局講嘛﹐同國會那些人講嘛。</p>
<p>
問﹕即是第一次是四百多五百人﹖之後呢﹐之後有多少﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰以後唔知﹐我們有時上去同他講﹐希望他不押解﹐他便停下來﹐他暫時性不押解囉。</p>
<p>問﹕鍾先生﹐我想問 一下你第一次﹐即是六零年代做中華公所主席呢﹐除了這個政策令到好多僑胞受惠啦﹐你可不可以講一下其他中華公所得工作呀﹖譬如你話過有個學校‥</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰其他工作﹐六零年代呢﹐舊時候呢﹐我們有小學呀、中學呀﹐那些嘛﹖</p>
<p>問﹕係…</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰教中文的。即是學中文的。五分局的局長他都來﹐警察都來學中文呀。</p>
<p>問﹕哦﹐是呀﹐在哪兒上堂呀﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰就在﹐中華大樓樓上﹐學校來呀。</p>
<p>問﹕那時有多少學生到﹖那時有多少學生…</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰學生﹐大約有千多﹐二千人。</p>
<p>問﹕那麼多…</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰現在目前三千幾人。</p>
<p>
問﹕他們中小學這樣﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰Yeah。</p>
<p>問﹕除此之外呢六十年代的東西你有沒有要補充呀﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰六十年代甚麼﹖</p>
<p>問﹕你有沒有想補充﹐譬如其他中華公所的工作﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰點樣﹐甚麼意思呢﹖</p>
<p>問﹕不如講一下七十年代啦﹐之後你第二次做中華公所主席啦﹐起孔子大廈是不是你最大的project呢﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰七十年代呢﹐就孔子大廈。因為有一個姓羅﹐羅金水[又稱羅德明]先生嘛。他看到報紙話市府有一個空地俾…提供中國人來做住宅呀。所以他看到他便去申請。去申請﹐他組織一個華園公司嘛﹐但係呢他去申請呢﹐但是他話呢個公司你有無信用﹐你租出去有幾耐﹖他話剛剛成立。他話﹐這樣你又剛剛成立﹐你點樣使人信用呀﹖點樣情形呢﹐所以他…又唔好﹐ 最好你返來呢你同你的社區看看哪一個公所﹐大的團體等它來出面來負責呀﹐這樣囉。後來他找到我﹐我便召集我們中華公所的常務委員幾個人﹐就同市府接洽﹐一講他便答應啦。他說得﹐你中華公所當然給你啦﹐因為當時市長是林西嘛Lindsay﹐他做市長嘛﹐所以我我便同他又又得講下個局長聽﹐有個樓宇局局長的人嘛﹐所以我就講市長都…後來他說好﹐你們中華公所拿去啦﹐中華公所我們一定可以做的。所以我們中華公所開會囉﹐開會﹐就交給中華總商會。我們中華公所呢屬下有六十個團體﹐<br>

所以中華總商會是屬於中華公所一個大團體之一嘛﹐所以就交給它做。</p>
<p>問﹕其實籌‥當初為什麼話起一個孔子大廈專門for老人居住﹖點解不話起其他…</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰不是講專門老人﹐中等入息﹐middle income。中等入息﹐就唔係話俾老人。本來我們想話老人﹐找不到地方。找不到地方﹐本來Henry街有間一百一十一號﹐Henry 街買 左啦﹐終於買左啦。賣左﹐因為又唔係大間﹐又要夠…全舊裝修﹐又賣左﹐無用囉。</p>
<p>問﹕孔子大廈是幾時起的﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰孔子大廈一九‥二七﹐二七[一九七三年]﹐七三、七四年開首的﹐七三、七四開首的﹐到七五年就完成了﹐七五年十二月我們就搬入來住啦。</p>
<p>問﹕那時候譬如籌集資金呀﹐順不順利呢﹖譬如起這個‥</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰資金是聯邦政府、省政府、市政府借來的﹐我們現在要…要供呀﹐供五十年呀。</p>
<p>問﹕啊﹐供五十年呀﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰有些是銀行借﹐幾間中國銀行呀﹐舊時金融銀行呀﹐東方銀行﹐主要銀行借呀貸款。</p>
<p>問﹕譬如一個普通得單位啦﹐舉例大概需要幾多錢呢﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰哦…[兩百多元一個單位的租金]</p>
<p>
問﹕譬如一個普通單位大約要供大約多少錢啦﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰哦…[由大樓管理處去供﹐住戶便交租金。]</p>
<p>問﹕譬如如果要供一個單位啦﹐即是租一個單位大概需要多少錢呢﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰要多少錢﹖[以前中等入息的住戶﹐要交兩百八十三元租金。]</p>
<p>問﹕譬如你這裡租貴不貴﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰哦﹐呢度﹖噢﹐即是一個柏文﹐一個柏文呀嘛﹖一個柏文至少都二百幾銀。</p>
<p>問﹕一個月﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰一個月﹐就是因為呢﹐它政府有一部份補助。</p>
<p>問﹕哦﹐一半補助。那現在這個大樓大概有幾多戶呀﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰七百幾戶呀。頭先講的是貸款的﹐都…唔個個話貸款﹐不是後來銀行同它…金融銀行未同它…是聯邦政府貸出來的錢﹐不是它的。而那個培護中心﹐那時叫培護中心﹐就係金融銀行同中美銀行[貸款的]。</p>
<p>問﹕那即是話當年的華埠是不是住屋問題是幾嚴重的﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰住屋呀﹐住屋是相…雖然無到現在 那麼嚴重呀﹐現在都很少屋呀﹐舊時雖然話嚴重都搵得到去住﹐現在你想搵都搵唔到呀。就係…</p>
<p>問︰Take a break here?</p>
<p>
問﹕鍾先生我想請你講一下九一一的事﹐你那時候是親眼看到九一一發生的﹐是不是﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰係﹐那時候﹐九一一那時候呢﹐大概朝頭早八點四十幾分鐘那時候﹐就第一座大樓就俾恐怖分子劫機呢撞毀了。即是那時候我都在樓下看到﹐望到呢個煙﹐濃煙走出來﹐就沒想到是恐怖份子劫機﹐因為以為飛機撞到或者點樣嘛。後來一陣間跌第二架飛機又撞過來。</p>
<p>[客家話 - 鍾先生請鍾太不要插話。]</p>
<p>問﹕你那個時候是在中華公所或者在自己家裡這裡看到的﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰我﹐樓下﹐我因為我要去其他地方﹐我剛剛一出門在樓下望到。</p>
<p>問﹕孔子大廈﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰係。望到﹐後來我便拿起手機打電話﹐打不通。其他的打不通。那些人﹐有些朋友來到﹐我們本來同我們一齊去一個地方嘛﹐所以他話︰「現在他手機都打不通﹐不知是甚麼事幹。」後來以後呢人逐漸由世貿中心入面人就慢慢地行上來囉﹐行上來唐人街﹐一路走﹐就行上行上﹐好似一大陣人﹐一陣一陣走上來[湧到唐人街這邊來]﹐一直上到十幾街去個度。</p>
<br>
<p>問︰你當時想第一刻你想到要做的事是甚麼﹖九一一發生…</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰九一一當時呢﹐我返到辦公室唸下呢﹐那時係唔係幾了解情況﹐當時呢飛機‥同時有些濃煙﹐慢慢的煙火煙吹到中國城來。那時候唸下這個事情損失點樣都不是很清楚﹐ 所以後來第二日這個事情好像是比較嚴重﹐因為呢﹐<br>

個個警察呀、國防軍呀在街口呢攔住﹐要那些騎木馬凳呀攔住﹐不讓人家來往哪兒。除非你出身份證﹐你在那裡住的居民囉﹐你就可以拿出身份證給他看﹐他給你過。如果你又無帶身份證就唔得﹐所以呢好多居民就投訴︰我都無身份證現在你唔俾我入。我就打電話同五分局的局長講﹐他好合作﹐他就說︰「這樣哪﹐總之﹐你總之講給他們聽來這裡﹐住在哪兒的﹐無帶身份證的呢﹐我證明就俾你一張紙。」所以他便方便好多。同時呢有些送貨的﹐你有張紙簽名﹐即是五分局證明話他在附近做生意的﹐他貨車可以方便通過﹐就俾他行這樣啦。所以他就好﹐即是情況好亂好緊張的。那些街道呢都好似死城市﹐無人行﹐街道無人行﹐所以呢其他國家有些人都打電話來問︰「你點樣情況呀﹖」有時我會同他講因為我們中華公所的電話呢﹐幸好全部通﹐無無話唔通的。所以‥</p>
<p>問﹕只是中華公所通﹐其他全部不通﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰所以我便召集我們中華公所的常務議員呀﹐便來開會囉﹐開臨時緊急會議﹐就中華公所呢出五萬銀﹐以後呢請那些各團體、商戶、僑胞﹐大家來捐款﹐來即是幫助這些災民﹐即是話九一一時間影響他的生意各方面有問題的﹐就要幫助他嘛。所以我們呢中共捐了有三十幾萬﹐電臺上的那些呼籲呢大概有二百幾萬 —當時幾大幾多確數我唔記得。</p>
<p>問﹕那已是好多了。</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰電臺又捐了很多﹐所以呢﹐我們捐到的錢就俾州長呀﹐給九一一基金會我們俾二十五萬。我們有俾警察呀﹐救護那些人員呀﹐好多各種醫療方面呀﹐紅十字會我們有捐錢它嘛。種種的呢三十幾萬我們全部發出去給人家。</p>
<p>
問﹕那﹐那我想問中華公所那時所有振災工作全部都在大樓裡面進行的吧﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰係﹐這是捐款的。但是呢我們同聯邦政府個個…叫做趙小蘭勞工部長呀她那兒有派人來﹐州政府有派人來、市府又有派人來、法律咨詢又有人來、Verizon電話公司呀、有呢個電話公司呀紅十字會呀、有一個叫做FEMA那些亦來﹐所以在中華公所大樓入面呢我們俾出地方讓他們辦公。所以一日每天都有成幾千人走入來來去去呀﹐這樣嘛。</p>
<p>問﹕譬如﹐譬如重建華埠啦﹐政府有沒有給過甚麼資金呀﹐俾過錢譬如幫助華埠呢﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰重振華埠呢﹐其實我們有兩個給錢囉﹐重振華埠我們即是舊時候話我們中國人的生意一落千丈﹐影響那麼大。便我們在Daily News賣‥逢禮拜五呀賣一日廣告﹐都花四萬幾銀囉﹐只是賣廣告呀。另外呢﹐做一個sign ﹐一個sign﹐那兒又…又‥就好在那個不用錢﹐他一個劃積的送給我們中華公所﹐他劃積的送給我們。但我們繁榮華埠呢﹐舞獅呀﹐每個週末舞獅呀﹐請人來跳舞呀﹐那些我們要花錢。</p>
<p>問﹕那主要推廣華埠旅遊業﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰推廣華埠旅遊業嘛。所以呢趙小蘭勞工部長呢﹐她便落來兩次﹐最後一次她落來﹐她便給一百萬給叫做job training的就給人力中心呀、亞平會呀﹐華策會那些機構即是那些﹐即是來訓練的。給了一百萬是這樣啦。</p>
<p>問﹕即是趙小蘭部長…</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰係﹐趙小蘭部長。</p>
<p>
問﹕鍾先生﹐那九一一對華埠的影響有多大呢﹖你可不可以講一下﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰哦﹐市面幾日停下來沒有生意﹐一直都無生意﹐影響相當大呀﹐損失好多﹐這個都好‥最緊要我們沒有那些數呢﹐總之﹐即是大家都講﹐有幾間鋪頭都關了﹐因為九一一的時候。</p>
<p>問︰你覺得現在譬如過了九一一兩年多啦﹐你覺得重建華埠的工作進行成怎樣﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰重建華埠工作呢﹐現在新的主席姓伍的﹐他都一樣繼續照樣來做。不過我們做開頭了﹐不過現在這樣不錯呀﹐就現在繁榮華埠的都在做。呢個呢即是要一步一步來逐漸來做﹐就能夠繁榮番來的。一方面﹐旅遊方面呢要怎樣加強來招來旅遊來觀光。尤其是車衣業方面呢﹐政府呢最好能夠來大力的支持它﹐等它恢復番呢﹐車衣業。現在車衣服業好少呀﹐我知現在好多人無工作做要向政府領失業金。</p>
<p>問︰其實你覺得現在chinatown有沒有急需要改善的地方呢﹖整體上來講﹐有沒有需要改善的地方﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰要改進﹐改進呢﹐我們最好呢unit 能夠加高。現在呢﹐呢度呢最高高到七層﹐七層樓。最好能夠加高到二十幾層。街道呢擴寬些﹐我們舊時候一個﹐一個發展繁榮華埠計劃﹐我們找一個[做]budget的Cury﹐來同我們budget來做…有計劃書的。同時發展觀光局﹐加強呢來協助發展車衣業囉。同埋呢增加房屋﹐房屋呀…同時街道能夠整修的整修﹐如果可以擴寬的呢最好能夠擴寬。這些即是我們一路來的目標﹐都是呢個。</p>
<p>問︰鍾先生我想問一下﹐九一一發生之後﹐這個事情對你對美國的看法有否不同呀﹖</p>
<p>
鍾僑征︰噢﹐呢個呢九一一呢﹐我們中國人來講呢﹐就這一次呢就非常之團結。所以話呢個影響好大﹐我們中國人方面比較團結。美國呢她損失那麼大﹐但是呢她又是想辦法來幫助我們的…那些損失那些﹐好似現在有LMD[C]…</p>
<p>問︰LMDC﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰LMDC呀﹐它便一樣來補助。就那些人呀﹐ 補助屋租呀﹐那些各種…</p>
<p>問︰所以你…</p>
<p>[錄音帶009-1B面]</p>
<p>鍾橋征︰係﹐係﹐係。世界上話最好係美國呀﹐住係邊度有那麼好。尤其老弱﹐現在尤其是對老人福利特別多。</p>
<p>問︰即是你都好滿意在這裡生活﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰呀。</p>
<p>問︰Take a break here?</p>
<p>問︰鍾先生﹐其實我知道在華埠啦有很多左派和右派的僑團﹐可能它們水火不融的。你在華埠那麼久﹐你覺得譬如有甚麼辦法可以改善這個問題呢﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰um…呢個華埠呢﹐那些中國人…都是由大陸出來的都是到海外謀生呀﹐是不是﹖本來呢大家都有和平共處﹐大家來合作。不過當時呀大陸上的領導人對海外的僑胞呢有唔同的看法﹐所以同埋對家人的迫害方面呀﹐<br>

就好多影響好大﹐所以變成呢即是這些人同共產的人心理上有一種恐怖一樣。但係呢﹐現在一代一代兩代人逐呀漸﹐他…不同的改變﹐逐漸他知道以往那些的恥事是不對的﹐所以他又有改變了。所以在八十年代到九十年代呢稍微比較鬆懈些﹐不會大家好似大家水火不融呀﹐可以即是容忍一下有時大家至多便不講話﹐或者唔會你抵制我﹐我抵制你﹐比較少些。所以我﹐就我做第三屆主席的時候呢﹐我覺得呢我們大家都是同胞﹐大家海外都是兄弟﹐就應該呢和平共處。雖然我好多時﹐好似Grand街後來關閉的時候﹐我們便向MTA交通局哪兒呢﹐同他講﹐同他開會呀﹐甚至帶人去示威﹐都各方面左右派不分甚麼 左右﹐大家都一致來同他交涉﹐中華公所的會[議]他們都有來參加﹐所以逐漸呢比較淡了不會敵對了﹐淡了。所以現在來講呢﹐有時大家都有來往呀﹐都是這樣﹐改變以往不同的看法囉。</p>
<p>問︰鍾先生﹐譬如剛剛Grand街地鐵站重開啦﹐其實你有沒有希望政府或者其他華埠交通問題上可以改善呢﹖譬如Park Row 呀那些…</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰本來大家便要…我做的時候應該都話啦政府…警察局的停車場應該要俾番保留俾大家用。因為你一關閉停車場對華埠生意影響好大﹐因為各地來到在這裡可以停車嘛﹐現在你哪兒沒有地方停車﹐街上Mulberry 街、Bayard 街、 Mott 街那些—給法院呀、警察局給他們全部泊了。我們居民想停車哪兒買東西都無法子停車。所以就要政府本來應該改善﹐你應該呢做多個大停車場﹐你政府那些官員那些﹐應該給他一個地區泊車﹐這些街坊的應該你俾番街坊用﹐這才對。Park Row 呢我們在交涉﹐現在都一樣在交涉﹐<br>

要他開放呀。但現在呢市長總是話要未開放。因為一開放呢﹐就生意會多好多的。因為你那些路﹐道路不通就好唔方便﹐所以人家食餐的都不敢來。</p>
<p>問︰我想問一下﹐你說的那個警察的停車場在哪兒﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰警察停車場在Federal Plaza 那兒。</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰就是後面就是呀。就是個個﹐個個是不是叫做 Precint Plaza ﹖不是叫Federal Plaza。</p>
<p>問︰即是政府總局哪兒﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰即是警察局旁邊﹐旁邊。</p>
<p>問︰we take a break here﹖</p>
<p>攝影師︰ok。</p>
<p>問︰鍾生﹐我想問下﹐譬如我知道你做過中華公所主席﹐這是華埠最大的組織啦。有時你要接待來自大陸或者台灣的政客﹐你會不會處於一個好好…尷尬的地位呢﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰關於呢個呢…對台灣的政客來講呢﹐就我們一樣呀﹐都是我們同他有關係﹐有接觸的﹐那些無問題。大陸那些﹐以往呢就大家呢不敢接觸、無接觸﹐亦無…不過近這幾年來呢就大陸比較開放些﹐所以便有時便有些接觸﹐有些接觸。即是大家不講政治﹐講僑胞華僑的地位﹐就是這樣。他亦知道我們不方便講那些的。所以前年呢我返大陸去來﹐我去過北京、上海、南京各地都去來﹐都各方面都不錯﹐那些城市。</p>
<p>
問︰那麼他們會否考慮以後加強與這裡的合作﹖譬如經濟上﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰這是﹐這是好自然的事情﹐這是好自然的事情。因為她覺得現在她要爭取華僑﹐舊時呢她認華僑呢就是外國人﹐現在呢她不是﹐改變作風。她現在呢華僑都是叫「歸僑」﹐現在大陸名叫「歸僑」呀﹐返到大陸呀。所以這個呢﹐她會逐漸改變。我們呢﹐無乜﹐希望她呢能夠學到美國一半﹐能夠有自由。有各種做生意都有自由貿易﹐不會話有樣樣管來控制﹐這樣嘛。所以這個…因為我們幾十年在美國﹐自由慣了﹐你話要來控制…又所以話﹐好多人初初來到美國呢﹐就說美國不好﹐等到他住落了以後﹐他覺得美國好﹐他知道美國自由各方面﹐以前他是不了解的。</p>
<p>問︰鍾生﹐我想問你手上的照片是甚麼﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰呢個呢﹐就是Grand Street 那個subway station grand﹐lead open 的相片﹐就是因為呢二零零一年的時候﹐二零零一年呀﹐就因為Manhattan 橋要修再修理﹐同埋Grand Street subway station 都要填D 線﹐所以呢就我們就向交通局去同它講數﹐請它修理時間縮短。那時候它講呢要四年到六年﹐我們都覺得你那麼長時間﹐那些﹐那些人﹐住客﹐附近的主客呢﹐好多來來去去的人呢好不方便呀﹐你應該縮短時間﹐兩年呀或者三年這樣。所以現在呢它終於兩年半﹐大概兩年半時間已經做好了。所以現在早幾日開幕﹐這個月二十二日就在這兒開幕。</p>
<p>問︰ok, 好。</p>
<p>攝影師︰Anything else? Go ahead。</p>
<p>
問︰鍾先生﹐我見你屋企好多同歷史名人影的相啦﹐你可不可以講一下這一幅呀﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰好。 </p>
<p>問︰這個是宋美齡﹐是不是﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰係。這個是我。</p>
<br>
<p>問︰哦﹐這個是你﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰這個是宋美齡﹐這個是周書楷大使。這個宋子文。</p>
<p>問︰哦﹐宋子文。你是幾時見到她的﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰一九七二年。</p>
<p>問︰她來New York 是不是﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰她來 New York﹐醫皮膚病﹐看皮膚的。</p>
<p>問︰哦﹐ok。其實你對宋美齡女士印象如何﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰這個人呢﹐她相當文雅﹐就可以講得呢是真是代表一國的夫人﹐所以呢她幫助蔣總統呀去出席那些開羅會議呀﹐對外交方面呀她做了很大的努力。好似抗戰的時候呢﹐她來美國向國會演講﹐來到Chatham Square那兒又同僑胞講話﹐所以她風靡全美國呀﹐即是對這個中國一個女人呀能夠那麼偉大出來為自己國家來出力來抵抗日本軍閥呀。<br>

所以大家都非常之專敬她﹐所以她呢真正是一個世界的偉人。</p>
<p>問︰其實今年她過身啦﹐你有沒有直接…</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰她﹐今年呀過左身…我們都有去祭來﹐去教堂哪兒﹐家祭呀﹐我們都去來。</p>
<p>問︰她﹐在華埠都有辦一個…</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰華埠一個天主教堂哪兒有一個追悼﹐追思會。</p>
<p>問︰ok。</p>
<p>問︰鍾先生﹐你去過呀宋美齡女士的屋企呢在上州﹐在uptown是不是﹖<br>
Uptown﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰Uptown﹐八十幾街哪兒﹐第五大道。</p>
<p>問︰譬如你和她會面時﹐她有沒有透露過對這裡的僑胞有甚麼期望﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰那時候呢﹐我去到呢當私人的拜會﹐因為那時是有一個葉國斌總領事呀﹐他同她有親戚的。他就話鍾主席︰「我同你一齊去見下夫人啦。」所以我說︰「好呀。」我便同他一同去見夫人。見到夫人呢﹐她…畫那些畫來﹐有些梅花呀、有些畫那些蘭花呀…她畫的花﹐那時她年紀沒有那麼大﹐六七十歲的時候。她話︰「我現在畫花呀﹐點樣﹖」我說畫得好靚好好呀﹐我便講﹐問下那些華僑大家點樣。她講︰「華僑呢對國家貢獻很大﹐抗戰的時候呢出錢出力﹐有些又去投軍。」她對華僑很欣賞﹐所以她有時呢﹐她都話希望那些華僑多返去台灣行下。</p>
<p>
問︰你見她的時候是幾時的事﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰一九七二年﹐就她來接她﹐去飛機場接她返來第二日啦。</p>
<p>問︰ Take a break here?</p>
<p>鍾先生﹐我想問下﹐你可不可以講一下你的家庭生活呀﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰哦﹐我呢現在目前呢就我同我女人兩個人在這裡﹐老人家。我的仔呢在大陸﹐有一個仔﹐兩個孫。一個…大孫呢去年十二月結婚。所以呢…想做他來的時候呢﹐美國同大陸呢是無交往﹐未有承認大陸呀﹐所以便做不到他來。等到做得他來﹐他自己做生意有事情做他又唔來得﹐現在囉我又年紀老﹐他又點樣呢…所以他都無來。</p>
<p>問︰哦﹐係呀﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰ 只有寄錢返來﹐是這樣。</p>
<p>問︰但是你心裡面﹐你會不會覺得其實美國的生活可能會對…</p>
<p>[。。。。。。。。。]</p>
<p>問︰鍾先生呀﹐你有幾多個小朋友﹐他們多大呢﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰我仔呀﹖仔女呀﹐六十幾歲囉。</p>
<p>問︰哦﹐有幾多個﹖</p>
<p>
鍾僑征︰一個。一個仔﹐兩個孫。孫都成二十幾歲囉﹐一個大的今﹐今年結婚呀。</p>
<p>問︰其實他們有無來探過你﹖看過你﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰無﹐無來過。因為以前呢大陸同美國無交往嘛﹐所以[現]在[中國與美國]有交往他又做生意無時間﹐所以現在都未曾來過。我前年呢返過大陸﹐我同太太返去大陸呀﹐見過他們。</p>
<p>問︰即是他們都在廣東梅縣﹖他做甚麼生意﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰他做運輸﹐同埋修理廠﹐修理車。</p>
<p>問︰其實你在美國那麼多年呢﹐便成日見不到個仔囉﹐其實你掛不掛住他﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰通電話啦。</p>
<p>問︰通電話…</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰寫信呀﹐通電話呀﹐這樣囉。</p>
<p>問︰其實﹐因為好多大陸人常常好想移民到美國啦﹐其實你有這個機會﹐其實<br>
即是好奇怪﹐點解你個仔…係你的仔不願意呀﹖還是你覺得都無所謂呀﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰他想來呀﹐但是他年紀大﹐你來到做甚麼好﹖又來重頭做過﹐又難呀。</p>
<p>
問︰那或者他的孫有無想話﹐你的孫會不會想來呢﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰他會想來。但是問題…問題看看怎樣啦。他一個呢﹐細﹐第二個呢他剛剛大學畢業呀。</p>
<p>問︰其實你對你的家人﹐你的仔女或者孫有甚麼期望﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰有甚麼期望呀。他…這個嘛﹐他能夠係…顧住自己家庭便得囉。等他在屋…鄉下又可以做事﹐可以做呀嘛。看他點樣先啦。</p>
<p>問︰其實你﹐就算通電話啦你都會不捨得﹐你會不會常常返去大陸呢﹐去看看他們﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰本來話今年七八月如果有機會返去下。看下先﹐看看我們兩個人腳行得﹐我們兩個人行得不行得先。我們兩個人的腳舊年跌倒。</p>
<p>問︰哦﹐係呀﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰在孔子大廈樓下跌倒﹐就四月跌倒﹐我在醫院住了一個月。現在我又行又慢﹐她就九月在街﹐即是包里街那兒跌倒。</p>
<p>問︰哦﹐包里街跌倒…</p>
<p>問︰ok﹐stop here。</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰想不到講甚麼。</p>
<p>問︰其實你現在退休啦﹐你現在平時做甚麼﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰我現在﹐除了去中華公所﹐即是社會上‥來來去去以外呢﹐便在屋企休息陪太太﹐陪太太囉。</p>
<p>
鍾太︰八十多歲囉﹐重想去哪兒﹖</p>
<p>問︰鍾先生﹐我想問一下﹐譬如這裡孔子大廈啦﹐好多人都話要排期呢好難﹐要入來住等好耐﹐是不是﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰係﹐因為孔子大廈有成二、三千人在 waiting list。</p>
<p>問︰Waiting list?</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰所以好難等﹐好難等到有的。</p>
<p>鍾太﹕等﹐等到第二代。</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰可能等都有的…</p>
<p>問︰譬如通常如果真是要等﹐要等幾耐﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰有些等成二十年囉。</p>
<p>問︰二十年﹖那﹐即是你覺得現在好幸運囉﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰不是﹐一開頭便有…因為呢個呢﹐因為中華總商會呢是我中華公所的會員嘛﹐所以我就填表﹐申請當然…要快。無乜講感情囉﹐他通知你…那時大家好多都填了都不要的﹐他話貴﹐那時出面呀五、六十元﹐七、八十元一個柏文嘛﹐我們這裡二百多元銀…</p>
<p>
問︰那時已經要二百幾銀﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰係﹐到現在都是二百幾銀。</p>
<p>問︰哦﹐這個價錢一直都無變﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰二百五十幾以前﹐二百五十幾。</p>
<p>問︰現在這個價錢…</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰現在二百八十幾﹐升了價。即是加五元﹐有時候。</p>
<p>問︰噢﹐幾十年加少少﹐這樣…</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰這是政府補助的嘛﹐政府補助。所以我們話﹐省、聯邦政府、省政府<br>
、市政府俾錢的嘛。</p>
<p>問︰鍾先生﹐我想問下﹐譬如東百老匯現在發展得好快啦﹐其實當年的東百老匯是怎麼樣的﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰當年東百老匯都是那些意大利人呀、有些其他人在東百老匯。即是有鋪頭呢都不是好多間﹐那時中國人呀。而就八十年代以後囉﹐七十年代就開始多些囉﹐八十年代就好多已經東百老匯好多滿呀。那些差不多﹐那些樓呀﹐自己買下來啦﹐舊時呀﹐租人家的。</p>
<p>問︰Ok, 鍾先生有沒有東西想補充﹖</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰差不多啦﹐我都已經記不起來了。</p>
<p>問︰Ok, 好﹐唔緊要﹐唔該晒你先今日。</p>
<p>鍾僑征︰好﹐不用客氣。</p>
<p>[完]</p>

Citation

“Henry Chung,” September 11 Digital Archive, accessed March 28, 2020, https://911digitalarchive.org/items/show/88954.