Historical Chinese artifacts unveiled in Fresno

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- History from the far east is right here in the Central Valley.

Dozens of never before seen treasures from Fresno's Historic Chinatown will be shared with the public next week.

Inside the Fresno Historical Society's hidden vaults are treasures that are now finally seeing the light of day.

"We are so grateful they have lasted this long," Ruth Lang with the historical society said.

They come from thousands of miles away, some from another era when China was still under dynastic rule, all kept by immigrants in Fresno's Chinatown.

"In the 1960s many, many of the buildings and temples had to be torn down," Lang said.

The artifacts used to be stored inside Kong Chow Temple, where a monument now stands. Now, the historical society is trying to find this history a new home.

Chinatown, as we know, has lost a lot of its identity," Lang explained. "We think this might help perhaps construct a temple where this could go in."

The historical society brought in experts to interpret and catalog the items. There are more than 100 pieces that range from statues to altars and tapestries, all nestled in a small vault waiting to be shown to the world again.

"The history of Chinatown and the Chinese is really located within this vault," Lang said. "It's from an era that China doesn't have. This is really American history, Chinese-American history."

It's all history that has preserved a little bit of the far east here in the Central Valley.
Copyright © 2021 KFSN-TV. All Rights Reserved.