Gems of History

True or False: Most, if not all, Chinese in the Philippines are businessmen

In the minds of many people, there is a prevailing perception that most, if not all, the Chinese in our country are businessmen. But is it true? Based on the 1903 census, among the 41,035 Chinese in the Philippines, there were 2,931 cooks, 2,508 carpenters, 1,363 shoemakers, 1,355 messengers, 998 servants, 549 bakers, 495 blacksmiths, …

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Chinese tsai-a-tiam

The Chinese sari-sari (variety) store, popularly known among the Chinese as tsai-a-tiam (菜仔店), is a thing of the past. The younger generation of Chinese may not have the chance to see a Chinese sari-sari store anymore even in Chinatown or Chinese districts in Manila or the provinces. They may not have even heard of it …

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In the same nest

There is a Chinese saying, “In a nest that falls, there are no eggs left unbroken (傾窼之下無完卵).” And when we say we are the same people in one country – mother Philippines – we always say we are in the same boat, and share the same fate. For Chinese in the Philippines, we always emphasize …

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