Tag Archives: University of Chicago

Pauline Poy Ling Senn – Missionary & Teacher

Senn Pauline Poy Ling
“Photo of Senn Pauline Poy Ling,” 1918, Chinese Exclusion Act case files, RG 85, National Archives-Seattle, Senn Pauline Poy Ling case file, Seattle, Box 394, 7028/978.

Miss Senn was born on 21 March 1882 in Shin Hing, China. She first came to the United States in 1896 as a young student. She attended various schools including Baptist Mission Training School in Chicago, Illinois; Home Mission Society in Portland, Oregon; McMinnville School, McMinnville, Oregon; Adelphi College in Seattle, Washington; and Lewis Institute in Chicago. She obtained her B. S. degree from Northwestern University, Chicago, Illinois in 1916. When she wasn’t going to school, she taught at mission schools.
Senn returned to China in 1918 and was a missionary/teacher at the Girls’ School for the South China Mission. Miss Senn’s witnesses on her 1918 application were Shailer Matthews, Dean of the Divinity School of the University of Chicago and Miss Nellie G. Prescott, Foreign Secretary Woman’s American Baptist Foreign Mission Society of Boston, Massachusetts.
Senn came back to the U.S. in 1924 and received her M. A. degree from Boston University in 1926. She left again for China to continue her work as a missionary/teacher. In 1937 she returned to study theology at Biblical Seminary in New York City. She had a scholarship covering one-half the tuition, room and board. Mrs. W. H. Dietz of Chicago was helping her pay the other half of her expenses.
Although the Chinese Exclusion Act was repealed in 1943, there is a “Certificate of Admission of Alien” form in the file dated 25 May 1948. It states that Senn’s status was “changed from Section 4-e student to student returning to relinquished domicile in June 1924, under which status she was entitled to permanent residence.”
[Information not included in the files: Pauline Poy Ling Senn was naturalized on 14 February 1955 in Massachusetts1. She died 4 June 1979, age 97, in Alameda, California2.]

1. U.S. Naturalization Records Indexes, 1794-1995, “Index to Naturalization Petitions and Records of the U.S. District Court, 1906-1966, and the U.S. Circuit Court, 1906-1911, for the District of Massachusetts,” database on-line, Ancestry.com (http://www.Ancestry.com : accessed 15 Mar 2017).
2. California, Death Index,” California Death Index, 1940-1997,” database on-line, Ancestry.com (http://www.Ancestry.com : accessed 15 Mar 2017).

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Miss Chan Ying Tak (Dr.) – Chicago

“Photos of Chan Ying Tak,” 1923 & 1933, Chinese Exclusion Act case files, RG 85, National Archives-Seattle, Chan Ying Tak file, Seattle, Box 854, Case 7031/503.
“Photos of Chan Ying Tak,” 1923 & 1933, Chinese Exclusion Act case files, RG 85, National Archives-Seattle, Chan Ying Tak file, Seattle, Box 854, Case 7031/503.

Chan Ying Tak photo 854 7031 503
Chan Ying Tak was born 8 January 1906 in Hong King, China. She was a student in Oi Hoi Village, Sun Whai District from 1912 to 1919 and Pui Ching School in Canton from 1919 to 1923. She came to the United States in 1923 as a student under the provisions of the Section 6 exemption of the Chinese Exclusion Act. She received her B.A. degree from Oberlin College, Oberlin, Ohio and obtained her medical degree at Rush Medical College at the University of Chicago. She interned for one year at the Women’s College Hospital in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. In 1933 she was a medical researcher at the University of Chicago.
In 1933 Miss Chan was applying for a re-entry permit so she could visit her family in China. Her father provided her with $2,000 a year while she was attending school. She described him as retired but a stock owner in various department stores and railroads in China. The interviewer asked if she would describe him as a retired Capitalist. She replied, “Yes, I think I would.”
Dr. Ying Tak Chan received an excellent letter of recommendation from B. C. H. Harvey, Dean of Medical Students, the University of Chicago and Edward H. Parson, Immigrant Inspector approved her application.
Information not in the file:
She returned to the U.S. and was very successful. Details to come…