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Contributing to Canadian History

For more than two centuries, there have been Chinese craftsmen and laborers working in western Canada. During the British Columbia gold rush of the late 1850s, thousands of Chinese came to "Gum San" - the Gold Mountain - as they called Canada, the land of promise. Working as miners, laborers, builders and construction workers on the Caribou Wagon Road, they also became an important part of the canning industry. During the construction of the Canadian Pacific Railway in the 1860s, more than 17,000 Chinese workers helped to build that vitally important connection across the continent.

The Chinese legacy lives on in Calgary, with a vibrant, important population in the city. Their contribution to the range of cuisine available to the people of the Canadian west - the range and quality of Chinese restaurants in the city is inspiring - but their impression on Calgary goes beyond their food. While visiting Calgary's historic Chinese district (Chinatown), be sure to visit the Calgary Chinese Cultural Center. The exhibitions there will give you a better understanding of how Chinese immigrants have made Canada more diverse and richer in every way. If your travel plans bring you to Calgary in August, be sure to attend the annual Dragon Boat Race and Festival.

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