Account books used in the Wong family store

Metadata

Place
Tuena
Crookwell
Subject
Category
Keywords
Commerce
Financial records
Trade
Current holder
Link
Item number
97/92/5-1
Access rights
Digitised
Country of origin
Language
Description from source
This account book and collection of papers and letters are part of the paperwork associated with the general stores operated by Sat and Amelia Wong in the New South Wales goldmining town of Tuena and later on a sheep farm at Bolong, north of Crookwell during the 1800s.

Sat and Amelia opened their first store, the Guang Yu Long Trading House, selling European and Chinese goods at Tuena in 1864. Their customers were mainly Chinese miners. Gold was discovered in the rivers and creeks around Tuena in 1851. Within six years Chinese diggers were arriving in such numbers that several camps sprang up with small Chinese stores and restaurants. Between 1864 and 1875 Sat and Amelia sold large quantities of pork, clothing and dry foods to Chinese customers. Like other Chinese stores, they also sold opium which remained legal until 1906.

Merchants were highly respected among Chinese immigrant communities. They functioned as bankers and creditors, while maintaining trading and personal links with China. Storekeepers and their customers often came from the same 'home' region. These letters and account book indicate that Wong Sat sold a wide range of goods while providing credit and money. References to 'elder brother' and 'uncle' suggest he enjoyed high status among the Chinese at Tuena and further afield, and may have belonged to a Chinese clan, or 'self-help' society.
Physical format
Manuscripts
Letters
Notebook
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