Monday, November 15, 2010
201. Canton and Chinese Influence on the Early United States
Some cities in the United States named their cities Canton. You maybe not aware of it. However, anyone who is familiar with Chinese history knows that Canton is the American name of a Chinese city. It is called Guangzhou nowadays. How come Americans named their cities following the name of the Chinese city? Little surprise will arise for knowing the fact that Americans named their cities after British cities because of the obvious reason.
I have two possible answers in the following. According to what I heard, the cities were named by the Chinese. In the 18th century many Chinese coolies, who came to the United States by assuming manual labors in various places, did not intend to stay in the United States for good, but want home with dollars in several years. However, by no means, they could control their own destines in this land far away from home. They found that they, by no means, could cross the Pacific Ocean with the money in hands. As a result, they named the places where they had to stay Canton-the name of their home town.
However, I don't think that those Chinese coolies could give names to their adopted cities at their will. Probably, Canton was chosen by powerful American merchants, who made huge fortunes from the China Trade directly or indirectly.
It is a well-known fact that the first millionaire of the United States was made by the trade between China and the United States. If you want to know more about how the first generation of the citizens of this country made their huge fortune out of the China Trade, please make a trip to Northeast United Stats, also called New England.
I have found that it is a must for a person who is interested in learning the early trade relations between the United States and China to visit this area-a living museum on the relations between the two countries in the 18th century. I have to stop here, otherwise, some will assume that I collect commissions from the area. To be honest, I don't collect a single penny from New England. Please find more information on Canton of the United States and American founders from this link.