Afong Moy

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Afong Moy
Afong Moy.jpg
Afong Moy, exhibited with "various Chinese curiosities"
Bornc. 1819
Canton City (now Guangzhou)
Known forFirst female Chinese immigrant to the U.S.

Afong Moy was the first female Chinese immigrant to the United States.[1] In 1834, she was brought to New York City from her home of Guangzhou by Nathaniel and Frederick Carne, who exhibited her as "the Chinese Lady". Announcements of the exhibition advertised her clothing, her language, and her four-inch "little feet",[2] a result of foot binding.[3]


Afong Moy arrived in New York from Canton, China with a variety of the Carnes' cargo on the Washington on October 17, 1834, listed on the passenger list as "Auphinoy".[4][5] The New York Daily Advertiser announced her as "Juila Foochee ching-chang king, daughter of Hong wang-tzang tzee king."[3] She was exhibited for some time in New York, with a translator, Atung, and "various Chinese curiosities",[2] after which she toured the country, even meeting President Andrew Jackson.[3]

Although she originally planned to return to China after two years in the United States, she ultimately stayed longer, and was still performing as late as 1850.[3] It is not ultimately known whether or not she finally returned to China or stayed in the United States, and details of her later life are also unknown.[6]


  1. ^ Wei Chi Poon. "The Life Experiences of Chinese Women in the U.S." Archived from the original on July 24, 2014. Retrieved September 5, 2014.
  2. ^ a b "The First Chinese Women in the United States". The National Women's History Museum. Archived from the original on 2014-09-05. Retrieved September 5, 2014.
  3. ^ a b c d Haddad, John. "The Chinese Lady and China for the Ladies" (PDF). Retrieved September 5, 2014.
  4. ^ "The Chinese Lady". Hartford Courant. 1834-11-24. Retrieved 2016-03-19.
  5. ^ Krystyn R. Moon (2005). Yellowface: Creating the Chinese in American Popular Music and Performance, 1850s-1920s. Rutgers University Press. pp. 59–62. ISBN 0813535077. Retrieved 8 December 2014.
  6. ^ Derek Sun. "The First Chinese Woman in America". Retrieved September 10, 2018.