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Kam Wah Chung and Company Museum

125 NW Canton ST, John Day, OR 97845
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Ranked #2 of 5 attractions in John Day
Type: History Museums
6 visitor photos
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29 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
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English first
Portland, Oregon
Senior Contributor
30 reviews 30 reviews
15 attraction reviews
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 26, 2014

Even if you are not interested in Oregon history, this museum will astound you. Our guide, Judy, was patient and informative and my granddaughter was awestruck. Actually, I was also and have a much better appreciation of our first Oregon settlers. The guided tour was an hour and we then spent an additional hour in the interpretive center/gift shop with... More

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Senior Contributor
34 reviews 34 reviews
14 attraction reviews
60 helpful votes 60 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 20, 2014

The Kam Wah Chung museum is a time capsule that tells the story of Doc Hay, a Chinese herbalist physician, and Lung On (Leon), businessman, who purchased the building, then in the heart of John Day's Chinatown. They stayed for the rest of their lives. Unusually for Chinese nationals, they chose to be buried in Oregon, on a hill overlooking... More

Was this review helpful? Yes 2
Portland, Oregon
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
3 attraction reviews
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 5, 2014

The story of these two Chinese immigrants during a very trying historical time was riveting. Loved the presentation and learning about the role the Chinese played in the mining industry and beyond. Allow plenty of time.. a couple hours?

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Boston area
4 reviews 4 reviews
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 30, 2014

I can only echo the reviews and raves of my fellow May 2014 visitor/reviewers of this fascinating little place. I was blown away by the stories that Christie, our excellent guide, told about the history of this place and how these two bachelors partnered to both serve the community and cash in, one talking one tack, the other the other.... More

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Chiang Mai, Thailand
Top Contributor
53 reviews 53 reviews
17 attraction reviews
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 27, 2014

A small state run museum and interpretive center surprised us - very clean, informative, friendly and interesting. I never had a thought about finding this important part of American history in such a remote place. If one is in the area, visiting the Fossil Beds perhaps, it is well worth the time to stop for 1-2 hours to discover some... More

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Helena, Montana
17 reviews 17 reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 27, 2014

It's hard to believe this area had the 3rd largest Chinatown in the US back in the day. A great tour go to the interpretive center first not the tour first then there like we did. If you do that its uh...a tad awkward but they still let us tour. Such an amazing piece of history tucked into small town... More

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Modesto, California
Top Contributor
409 reviews 409 reviews
172 attraction reviews
419 helpful votes 419 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 23, 2014

We visited this museum a few weeks ago while vacationing throughout Oregon. This sounded like a very interesting and worthwhile historical stop and it did not disappoint. In fact, I was completely mesmerized by what I saw here. I love historical places and this is one of the most interesting and unique places I have ever visited. It is amazing... More

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Senior Contributor
27 reviews 27 reviews
4 attraction reviews
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 14, 2014

Both were well worth the visit. Recommend visiting the interpretative center first, then meeting the park ranger there on the hour for a tour of the museum just a block away. Although the museum, built in the late 1800's is not wheelchair accessible, the interpretative center is wheelchair accessible. There is a book in the interpretative center that contains photos... More

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Colorado Springs, Colorado
Senior Contributor
26 reviews 26 reviews
13 attraction reviews
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 10, 2014

I went on a whim and certainly glad I did! The free admission caused me to leave a donation because I felt so guilty for such a great experience. You literally walk into history sitting in the middle of John Day. It has been a couple of years since my tour, but I still think about all of the Chinese... More

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
19 reviews 19 reviews
9 attraction reviews
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 25, 2013

This is a true hidden JEWEL Being a pharmacist, this small building filled with herbs and treatments is very interesting. The story of the history of the area, what brought the Chinese off the beaten path and why there are no more in the area is quite interesting.

Was this review helpful? Yes 1

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