You are here

Wing Chong Building

-A A +A
1918. West side of Cannery Row between David Ave. and Bruce Ariss Way.

This two-story rectangular building with wooden shiplap siding is the former Wing Chong Company Grocery, which inspired the Lee Chong grocery in Steinbeck’s novel, Cannery Row. The business—whose name means “glorious successful”—was founded by Won Yee (d. 1934), who emigrated from China in 1913. Yee was pivotal in developing the process to dry squid for export to China. The grocery was more like a general store that served the cannery workers: besides selling food products, it offered items such as work gloves and fishing gear. By 1937, the family business had expanded into the Yock H. Yee Restaurant as well as a grocery.

The building represents the Chinese community’s presence in Monterey. Its interior light wells in the center of the building are a traditional Chinese architectural design feature, while the second-story cantilevered balcony is the exterior’s most notable feature. Today the structure is occupied by various shops, although a sign indicating its former use is visible on the facade.

References

Architectural Resources Group. “Final Cannery Row Cultural Resources Survey Report Document.” Prepared for the City of Monterey, California, 2001.

Writing Credits

Author: 
Heather N. McMahon
Coordinator: 
Emily Bills
×

Data

Timeline

  • 1918

    Design and construction

What's Nearby

Citation

Heather N. McMahon, "Wing Chong Building", [Monterey, California], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—, http://sah-archipedia.org/buildings/CA-01-053-0015-07.

If SAH Archipedia has been useful to you, please consider supporting it.

SAH Archipedia tells the story of the United States through its buildings, landscapes, and cities. This freely available resource empowers the public with authoritative knowledge that deepens their understanding and appreciation of the built environment. But the Society of Architectural Historians, which created SAH Archipedia with University of Virginia Press, needs your support to maintain the high-caliber research, writing, photography, cartography, editing, design, and programming that make SAH Archipedia a trusted online resource available to all who value the history of place, heritage tourism, and learning.

, ,