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William Sing Mock

Interviewee: William Sing Mock
Interviewed by: Connie Young Yu
Interview Date: 2018
Location: Palo Alto, California
Length of Interview: 27 minutes, 37 seconds

00:51 [crosstalk].
00:09 Connie Yu: You came by yourself to Angel Island? You came by yourself from China?
00:11 Woman: …
00:16 William Sing Mock: … Immigration… Immigration … Talk to immigration, the people …
00:01 Mock: Immigration …
00:09 Mock: My godfather and me …
00:41 Mock: Immigration …
00:15 Mock: Immigration …
00:01 Mock: United States economy very slow. Almost no job.
00:15 Mock: Flour, grocery … lucky to find money …
00:33 Mock: I got enough for my living …
00:50 Mock: I want to buy this book …
00:12 Mock: W A N T … buy … the book … funny [?] …
00:49 Mock: I think … 1870 … continue Asian [?]…
00:24 Mock: I go to …
00:58 Mock: I like [?]. Yeah, I got more money.
00:30 Mock: Flour, wholesale…
00:51 Yu: …
00:51 Mock: …
00:04 Yu: … Stanford… Stanford…
00:12 Woman: …
00:16 Mock: … Palo Alto …
00:18 Yu: You are in Palo Alto.
00:19 Mock: … Stanford property.
00:22 Yu: Yeah, Stanford property.
00:23 Mock: … yeah…
00:29 Yu: So, … how do you say “lease the land”? … How do you…
00:35 Woman: … Stanford …
00:47 Mock: …
00:49 Woman: …
00:54 Yu: Lease
00:54 Mock: …
00:02 Yu: …
00:09 Mock: …
00:17 Yu: Is it Jim Mock … same Mock?
00:22 Woman: … Jim Mock … Palo Alto…
00:29 Mock: Jim Mock?
00:30 Woman: … Palo Alto…
00:34 Mock: Yeah, Jim Mock. He’s a, he’s a whole time, yeah Jim Mock. [?].
00:44 Yu: … interview … [?].
00:47 Mock: Jim Mock…. Jim Mock… old Jim Mock…
00:33 Yu: … We’re with the Stanford Railroad Project …
00:49 Yu: I want to know…
00:55 Woman: …
00:03 Mock: … I think maybe around 19… I think 1890…
00:28 Yu: Yeah
00:29 Mock: … Stanford … Stanford…
00:39 Mock: … to [?] for the… my country … history…
00:29 Mock: … say no can go in there, courthouse.
00:32 Yu: …
00:37 Woman: …
00:45 Mock: …
00:49 Yu: Okay. Tell me about your great grandfather working on the railroad. Can you say that in English?
00:57 Woman: …
00:17 Mock: Yeah. My grandfather … come to United States. They have a contract in Hong Kong. In Hong Kong, they come and they … to fund [?] out the people to come to United States to build a railroad. My grandfather got the contract … like you to go to United States to work for the railroad. Go to Hong Kong, sign up your name…So they need a promise to go. To go… in that time, my grandfather worked for not to long. Then, the Southern Pacific Railroad finish, no job. Their job … the family … the family and him really good friends. So Stanford … I think he’s a great son … Then, finished the railroad… no job … Got a big family. They go to … to learn how to grow flour. How do I say. He learned then later … to go flour. Flour. Pretty soon we are growing flour. Go to his place to learn, the grandfather.
00:11 Yu: In China.. are they cousins? Are they related? Your grandfather Mock. In China.
00:22 Mock: In the same village. But not from family, but in the same place. … the people really really good. My relative, he went to work for the railroad first. Ok. I think he maybe come maybe 1880… he come later… introducing the relatives… Mr. Mock… lots of people to come to United States to San Francisco, to California to build a railroad. To build a railroad in … finishing the railroad… then lots of Chinese to cut the farming, plant the vegetables, some grow flour, learn from the Japanese.
00:11 Yu: Did you know your grandfather? …
00:17 Woman: …
00:22 Mock: … I think 1905 they come back from United States. I think at that time I am maybe 5 years old.
00:52 Yu: In the village. They had come back from the United States.
00:59 Mock: Come back to the family, to China.
00:09 Yu: Does he reach?
00:10 Mock: … bring home. China … China, the situation no good. The government almost, look like a new law. See, the number one, the number one name… Chu, Lei, Chan.. These are more people, see. That’s really tough…
00:15 Woman: …
00:16 Mock: Yeah, because they took the money. They ask you give the money. You don’t give to him, see, he fight you. He maybe knock you down.
00:36 Yu: Is this in China? …
[crosstalk].
00:46 Yu: money …
00:52 Woman: … We have a picture …
[crosstalk].
00:05 Yu: …
00:09 Woman: I wonder if there are pictures of that [?].
00:16 Yu: I just want him to realize. I want him to know what his grandfather was like. …
00:29 Mock: … Yeah. My grandfather very strong.
00:34 Yu: Very strong.
00:35 Mock: Yeah, he does to the school maybe one year. Then, he know a lot. He know a lot. … Before the people… everything.
00:01 Yu: He could read and write. He could read and write in Chinese.
00:04 Mock: He write a little bit. He took one year of school. Only one year of school.
00:13 Yu: In the village.
00:15 Mock: Yeah. In China… but he know a lot.
00:22 Yu: Do you know what he did on the railroad? … What kind of job on the railroad?
00:31 Woman: …
[crosstalk].
00:04 Mock: … My grandfather come here to build a railroad. When finished…
00:12 Woman: …
00:22 Mock: Just, not the engineer. See, just you know, maybe [makes hammering motion].
00:36 Yu: Labor.
00:37 Mock: Yeah, yeah, yeah. They bring the steel. Then put down something through. They hear the engineer to talk. The Chinese help the Chinese to who know the English to hear the American, white people, to talk. To talk these white people talk to Chinese, the Chinese to know to talk each Chinese laborer, to what to do. That’s all. Yeah. My grandfather, he not dumb. Yeah. I think maybe a little bit but the people. Yeah. He’s honest, and easy to know what to do, how to do. My father then got the money to send back to China to buy the property in China. Buy the property …

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