Bittersweet Roots: The Chinese in California’s Heartland

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Executive Producers: David Hosley and Dennis Yep

Producer: Corita Gravitt


Subjects: , ,

The California Delta, in the heart of the state, is the only place in America where the Chinese have maintained a sustained presence for nearly a century and a half. Here, immigrants from China transformed swampland into one of the richest agricultural regions on earth. This is their story, about how they came and thrived despite hardship and discrimination, an experience that has been both bitter and sweet.

The story begins in the 1850s, when thousands of Chinese fortune-seekers rushed to “Gam San,” or “Gold Mountain.” After the mines were exhausted, Chinese workers faced the arduous task of completing the Transcontinental Railroad. Then they reclaimed the Delta by building a complex system of levees, all the while establishing communities that continue to thrive today. BITTERSWEET ROOTS is above all an epic story, a powerful lesson about triumph over adversity that serves as an inspiration to use all.

A production of KVIE, Sacramento, CA

Pricing - College / University / Institution