Museum of the City of San Francisco
By Subject
By Year
The Gift Shop

The Japanese and Korean Exclusion League was a San Francisco organization comprised of powerful labor leaders, including Patrick H. McCarthy, general president of the Building Trades Council of San Francisco – as well as future mayor, and Andrew Furuseth, legendary waterfront labor leader.

The league was organized in mid-1905, and headed from its inception by Olaf A. Tveitmoe, general secretary of the Building Trades Council, who also served as editor of “Organized Labor.” One goal of the organization was to extend the Chinese Exclusion Act to Japanese and Korean immigrants.

Asiatic Coolie Invasion

The Japanese and Korean Exclusion League held its annual meeting Sunday, and transacted its regular business as contemplated before the disaster.

The reports of the officers were of necessity brief, but they showed, nevertheless, that the League has accomplished good results during the past year.

Japs Have Invaded the Western Addition. 1906 Advertisement for Baldwin and HowellAttention was called to the fact that if it had not been for the efforts of the Japanese and Korean Exclusion League, assisted by united labor, the Foster bill would have passed Congress, and thus the Chinese Exclusion act would have been virtually repealed. It would have thrown down the bars and admitted every Chinaman to our shores who desires to come here.

The burden of proof would have devolved on us, and thousands of coolies would have found free entry under the guise of merchants, students and travelers.

The Foster bill and similar measures are killed as far as this session is concerned, but patriotic Americans may do well to keep their eye on the next Congress, because if we are not mistaken strenuous efforts will be made to admit the coolie hordes of China.

The League has also been working diligently and with great success for the extension of the Chinese Exclusion act to Japanese and Koreans.

At the opening of the present Congress, it was very offensive to say anything detrimental about the Japanese immigration in the presence of a Congressman or a Senator, and the President of the United States was even reported to have said that if they sent the representatives of the Japanese and Korean Exclusion League to the White House he would deport the members of the committee.

The change which has taken place is notable, not only in the halls of legislation in Washington, but in the industrial and commercial centers of the east.

The literature and statistics sent out by the Japanese and Korean Exclusion League has done wonderful work in educating the public.

Thousands of fair minded and well meaning people who were biased and ignorant on the question of Japanese immigration have during the last year, entirely changed their views on the subject. They have learned the truth that the Japanese coolie is even a greater menace to the existence of the white race, to the progress and prosperity of our country than is the Chinese coolie.

But if there has been danger from Asiatic imigration to our state before, that danger has not lessened now.

On the contrary it has increased.

The great calamity which befell San Francisco will furnish the Orient with lurid tales of opportunity for employment and profit. California, the land of fabulous wealth, revenue and mountains of gold, and San Francisco with its wonderful wages will be exploited before the ignorant coolies until they will come in ship loads like an endless swarm of rats.

Do not for a moment think that the Japanese will keep away on account of the earthquakes. They are raised on earthquakes in Japan, and the earthquake will only make the Nepponese coolies feel more at home in California.

Great as the recent catastrophe has been, let us take care lest we encounter a greater one.

We can withstand the earthquake.

We can survive the fire.

As long as California is white man’s country, it will remain one of the grandest and best states in the union, but the moment the Golden State is subjected to an unlimited Asiatic coolie invasion there will be no more California.

Asiatic Immigration

An Encouraging Letter

The following communication from Congressman Hayes of the Fifth District has been received:

House of Representatives, Washington, May 1, 1906
Mr. A.E. Yoell, Secretary Japanese and Korean Exclusion League,
San Francisco California.

Dear Sir: – As it is now nearly one year since the organization of the Japanese and Korean Exclusion League, I venture to write and congratulate the League through you upon the progress made toward the ultimate exclusion of Japanese and all Mongolians from our shores.

I have used many of the facts and figures gathered by the League, not only in the speech that I made in the House but in personal conferences with members of Congress, with the very best results, and I am glad to be able to report that the feeling in Congress is very much more favorable to the proposition to extend the Chinese Exclusion laws to embrace all Mongolians that it was at the present session. In fact, I believe that if we could get consideration of the bill introduced in the House at the opening of the session, it would pass the House of Representatives by a large majority, but the Speaker is at present opposed to this consideration and we must continue to work upon him until we overcome his opposition. If the agitation is kept up, and we continue to bring the attention of the Japanese competition and the dire evil influence upon our civilization of of their residence among us, we are bound to succeed.

Trusting that the recent terrible calamity that has visited our State, and especially San Francisco, will not dampen the ardor of the League in this cause, nore interfere with their work, and assuring you that I shall be glad at all times to co-operate, I remain,

Sincerely Yours,


Organized Labor
Official Organ of the State and Local Building Trades Councils of California
San Francisco
April 21, 28, and May 5, 1906 [Combined edition].

Return to top of page