Monday, July 27, 2015

Exploring Locke CA

We went on an adventure this weekend to Locke, CA, which is about 75 miles outside of San Francisco and 25 miles outside of Sacramento. It is the only remaining Chinese village in the USA. It is a former little Chinese community situated by the Sacramento river.


At one time, 600 residents, all of whom were Chinese, lived in this three square block community. Now the permanent population of the town is less than 100, and less than a dozen of the residents are Chinese.

It is not a ghost town, but you can see and feel the age of the place with it's leaning buildings and tattered wear and-tear.



The original beginning of Locke (then called Lockeport), was in 1912, when three Chinese merchants, two from nearby town of Vorden and one from Walnut Grove, contracted tradesmen to construct three buildings. The first building was a combination dry goods store and beer saloon. Next came the gambling hall, and then the Hotel & Restaurant. According to Wikipedia, a total of seven structures eventually formed Lockeport with the hope of it becoming a destination for riverboat and train passengers (a tourist trap, perhaps).

This is main street today.


Locke is an interesting little town, especially if you are interested in Chinese American history.