More about Shaving Feasts

Photo of Eng Sing
Cropped photo of Eng Sing from family photo, ca. 1914, Chinese Exclusion Act case files, RG 85, National Archives-Seattle, Eng Sing file, Box 225, Case 4280/10-15.

[Eng Sing has a standard Chinese haircut for that time period. Traditionally the baby’s head was completely shaved except a little topknot in the crown of his head. A “Shaving Feast” may have been held for Eng Sing when he was one-month old. At the feast an elaborate meal would be served for many guests. An article, from a Caucasian prospective, published on 3 March 1912 in the Dallas Morning News describes a feast with a fourteen-course meal with turtle, bacon, roast duck, eel, bamboo sprouts, pigeon, abalone and other exotic foods.]

See “A Chinese Shaving Feast,” Dallas Morning News (Dallas, TX), 3 March 1912, Section 3, page 3; Newspaper. Online at,, accessed 9 Sept 2015.

1 thought on “More about Shaving Feasts

  1. Hi Trish…Wow!  :Shaving Head Parties have been always around though today, often the party is delayed beyond the one month old date.  sometimes it is 100 days.  I don’t know the reason for the change in time.When I grew up in SFO there weren’t many baby parties, so when my daughter was born, I objected to having her head “shaved’ since no one could give me a logical reason for doing so.  Years later I saw something about a child’s head being shaved in dedication to Buddha. ….sorry no way.  Loved the elaborate description of the banquet.  Interesting to note that some  men had already cut their queues, and yet one man still had his.  Thanks…Loretta 


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