Thursday, April 02, 2015

Echoes From Gold Mountain

Sunday May 3rd - 2:00 p.m.

A game of hide-and-seek uncovers an unexpected treasure chest of “riches” for two kids visiting their grandparents’ old store in Northern California. In Echoes Of Gold Mountain, the children discover a secret room containing letters dating back to the 1850s. Readers are transported back in time to get a glimpse of the lives of the early Chinese pioneers who came to “Gold Mountain” in search of opportunity during the Gold Rush. The story was inspired by a school project created by author Debbie Yamada’s daughter when she was studying California history in the fourth grade. After doing some research, Ms. Yamada discovered that at the peak of the California Gold Rush one out of every five miners was, in fact, Chinese, numbering close to 50,000 Chinese miners. Set against this historical backdrop, the author sets out to create characters and imaginary letters that embody the hopes, dreams and struggles of the Chinese sojourners of long ago. Echoes of Gold Mountain adds another dimension to the events of the California Gold Rush by shedding light on the people who were often overlooked in American history. Ms. Yamada’s presentation will cover the inspiration for the book, the writing process, development of illustrations, a reading of selected passages and a question and answer period.

Debbie L. Yamada is a second generation Chinese American born and raised in Southern California. She has a B.A. in art history from the University of California, Irvine and a M.A. in Asian art history from the University of Hawaii. She has shared her research about the Chinese miners during the California Gold Rush and her writing experiences with numerous historical societies, authors’ festivals, teacher and library conferences, museums and schools throughout California. She is a retired art teacher for elementary school students.

Debbie Yamada has written a historical novel that can be enjoyed by readers eight to eighty. Bring the whole family to this free event. Light refreshments will be served.