Chinese Opium Scale
A woman in Missoula, Montana bought what looks like an old, miniature fiddle case in the Montana mining town of Butte in the 1960s. When she made the purchase, she was told the case didn’t hold a fiddle, but rather a scale that was used for weighing opium.
Could this really be an antique from the Chinese community of Montana? The Chinese were among the first immigrant groups to arrive in Montana in the 1800s. After the California gold rush petered out, Chinese immigrants moved away to find work building the railroads, mining gold, and in restaurant and laundry businesses.
History Detectives heads to Montana to find out how Chinese immigrants survived for decades in Big Sky Country, particularly during a time when anti-Chinese sentiment was rampant in the U.S.
- Also in Season 4 Lou Gehrig Autograph Did Lou Gehrig autograph this ticket on the day he announced his retirement?
- Also with Elyse Luray Sideshow Babies Was the owner of this cup once a four-pound sideshow exhibit?
- Also with Elyse Luray Tumbling Tumbleweeds Why would writing this song be bad for Bob Nolan?
- Also with Elyse Luray Pete Gray Cartoon Do these unsigned drawings from the golden age of comics tell the tale of a real life superhero?
- Also in Season 4 Civil War POW Photos Were these pictures made in a Civil War prison with a home-made camera?
- Also in Season 4 Confederate Eyeglass Is this how southern sympathizers identified each other during the Civil War?
This is a place for opinions, comments, questions and discussion; a place where viewers of History Detectives can express their points of view and connect with others who value history. We ask that posters be polite and respectful of all opinions. History Detectives reserves the right to delete comments that don’t conform to this conduct. We will not respond to every post, but will do our best to answer specific questions, or address an error.