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Ah Bing

horticulturist, namesake of the Bing cherry
Born: ?
Birthplace: China

A Manchurian Chinese, Bing immigrated to the United States and went to work in the orchards owned by the Lewelling family in Milwaukie, Ore., around 1855. He became a foreman. Reported to have been 6 ft 2 in. tall, Bing supervised up to 30 other Chinese workers and was in charge of several rows of trees in the nursery. The nursery specialized in creating new varieties of fruit by grafting twigs onto different varieties of trees. One of the most famous of their new varieties, the Bing cherry, was named for Bing because he cared for the plants that first produced it. During the anti-Chinese hysteria that swept parts of the West in 1885 and 1886, Bing and the other Chinese workers lived in the Lewelling home for safety. Bing sent money regularly to his family, which had remained in China. After working for the Lewellings for nearly 35 years, he returned to China for a visit around 1889. Because of the anti-Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882, which was renewed in 1892, Bing was never able to return to America.

Died: ?

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