By Patricia E. Roy
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Additional resources for A White Man's Province: British Columbia Politicians and Chinese and Japanese Immigrants, 1858-1914
Nothing came of the scheme. 46 Seldom were the Japanese accused of uncleanliness, but the image of the unclean Chinese persisted and was often exploited for commercial purposes. Restaurants often advertised "None but white help employed"; occasionally they made more dramatic proclamations. 47 White men who established laundries often advertised the whiteness of their employees as much as the whiteness of their linen. " The experience of Moyie, a Kootenay mining town, where whites established the first laundries and residents boycotted those of the Chinese was exceptional.
When the City of Vancouver, which had its own charter, discovered several Japanese names on the municipal voters' list in 1898, it easily got the legislature to amend its Act of Incorporation to add Japanese to the Chinese and Indians who were not entitled to vote. 19 Whether or not Japanese who were British subjects could vote in federal elections was less clear because of an 1898 amendment to the federal Elections Act. During the 1900 election, the Japanese Association launched a test case on behalf of Tomey Homma, a naturalized British subject.
Pagan, the secretary, recommended at least semi-annual medical examinations of all Chinese and Japanese and registration and inspection of their dwellings, which would have to be brought up to standard or destroyed. After visiting San Francisco, Pagan urged the quarantining of all Chinese and Chinese goods entering from the United States. The danger, however, did not seem imminent, perhaps because San Francisco interests attempted to suppress news of the plague. Three months passed between the first "A World of Their Own" 35 reports of the plague in San Francisco and the provincial Board of Health's order that Chinese and Japanese had to report all sickness and deaths to health authorities.