One of the wonderful things that defines the United States of America and has contributed to making this nation one of the greatest on Earth is its diversity. The country was founded by many diverse groups of people, traveling from all around the world, and has grown into one of the most culturally diverse nations on Earth, utilizing that diversity in numerous ways to improve and enhance daily life, offering more options and more opportunities for all to enjoy in fields of culture, education, and more. America's diversity should be celebrated and preserved, and that's exactly what is being done in Santa Clara County, California, by the Chinese Historical and Cultural Project.
The Chinese Historical and Cultural Project (CHCP) is a non-profit organization that got founded back in 1987 by Lillian Gong-Guy and Gerrye Wong. It was created in order to help preserve and protect Chinese American history and heritage in the Santa Clara County area and can look back on a lot of successful projects and events over the years, beginning back in the late 1980s with the reconstruction of the Ng Shing Gung community center, which has since been donated to the City of San Jose and used as a museum, educating visitors on Chinese-American history and sharing stories from the earliest Chinese settlers and pioneers.
The Chinese American Historical Museum (CAHM) at Ng Shing Gung in San Jose has become a key base for the CHCP, but the organization also organizes many other activities and events like outreach programs, educational exhibitions, special events like Chinese New Year celebrations, and more. Through its various programs and efforts, this organization is doing a lot of incredible work for the Chinese-American community both in Santa Clara County, and throughout the rest of California, serving as an inspiration for other museums and organizations to follow. Protecting and preserving Chinese-American heritage for future generations, the CHCP is a shining example of the ways in which America's diverse history can be celebrated and promoted.
The Chinese American Historical Museum
The CAHM, also known as the Ng Shing Gung temple or 'Temple of the Five Gods' is based in an old temple, constructed way back in 1888 in the Heinlenville Chinatown of San Jose. It's a beautiful building, tragically dismantled in the late 1940s but eventually recovered and restored with a perfect replica by the CHCP in 1991, with the organization also working to establish a trust fund to ensure that the new Ng Shing Gung building would stand proudly for many years.
It was then donated to the city of San Jose and made into a part of the History Park area of the city. Under its new name of the Chinese Americna Historical Museum, this location serves to educate and inspire visitors, offering glimpses into the past of Chinese American communities around the nation, but with a big focus on the Chinese Americans of Santa Clara County. The museum is open on the 1st and 3rd Sundays of each month. It opens its doors at 11am and closes at 4pm, but may change its opening hours and dates for various special events organized throughout the year.
Special Events with the Chinese Historical and Cultural Project
The CHCP organizes a myriad of unique events to celebrate and promote the Chinese American community and heritage of Santa Clara County. Events include membership dinners, New Year festivities, Tai Chi lessons in History Park, and much more. Designed to both educate and entertain, these special events let visitors of all backgrounds come together and learn more about the Chinese American community, while also enjoying fun days out with their friends and families.
Membership with the Chinese Historical and Cultural Project
If you'd like to support the Chinese Historical and Cultural Project, you can choose to make a one-off or monthly donation, or simply visit the museum and attend the various special events throughout the year. Another great way to show your support is to volunteer your time and services at events and around the museum, but one of the very best ways is to sign up for CHCP membership. With prices starting at just $50 a year for individuals or $85 a year for couples, with discounts available for students, CHCP membership offers a lot of interesting benefits and is one of the best ways to help the CHCP continue doing its great work.
Both standard and patron level membership programs are available, with some of the exclusive benefits including invitations to the annual dinners, free admission for various special events, regular newsletters to keep you up to date with all the happenings around the CHCP, and even a discount at the History San Jose Gift Shop. Those who choose the patron level program will also get membership to Reciprocal Organization of Associated Museums (ROAM), which offers free entry to hundreds of museums all around North America. website