Southeast Asian Archival Resources at the Center for Lowell History

The following archival collections contain Southeast Asian-related information and/or materials.

Any collection with a UMass Lowell collection number associated with it has been determined to have enough Southeast Asian materials/priority materials to have SEADA work completed on. Various SEADA projects may have included: tracking and determining acquisition history; reviewing previous work done on collection; processing the collection; creating a finding aid; digitizing materials from the collection; moving legacy projects into Omeka; etc.

Any collection information in italics is tentative (title, description, finding aid, etc.) and is currently being worked on and finalized.

This is not a complete list. When visiting the Center for Lowell History, please ask if there are other Southeast Asian resources. Contact information for the Center for Lowell History can be found on their website.

Ali, Mehmed. Asian-American Collection, circa 1974-2017. UML 14 ali-mehmed

The collection consists of 25 boxes each housing a large assortment of folders. Items in the folders include documents related to various businesses, organizations, and publications mostly in the Greater Lowell Area like the Angkor Dance Troupe, the Cambodian Mutual Assistance Association, and the Southeast Asian Water Festival. Included in the collection is an unspecified amount of oversized artwork and materials related to Asians in Hawaii, Iraq, and Afghanistan.

Angkor Dance Troupe, Inc. Collection, 1991-2017. UML 5

Angkor Dance Troupe, Inc. is a 501(c)3 nonprofit dedicated to preserving the traditions of Cambodian performing arts while providing a positive social and educational environment for their young members. The collection includes financial records, board of directors records, correspondence, program files, and photographs.

The Cambodian Broadcaster

The Cambodian Broadcaster was an early Cambodian Lowell-based newspaper printed in Khmer (Cambodian) and English. This microfilm collection includes issues published between April 1988 to March 1989.

Cambodian Mutual Assistance Association of Greater Lowell, Inc. Publications, 1997-2007. UML 19

This collection includes digitized issues of the Cambodian Mutual Assistance Association of Greater Lowell, Inc.'s bilingual magazines Khmer Lowell and CMAA Lowell Magazine.

Center for Asian American Studies. Collection, 2018-Ongoing. UML 11

This collection includes:

Chigas, George. Photographs from Refugee Camps in Southeast Asia, circa 1980-1989. UML 10

This photograph collection covers George Chigas’ time working at the Philippine Refugee Processing Center and his visits to Thailand-Cambodia border refugee camps in 1989. The collection is organized into four series: Philippine Refugee Processing Center, Khao I Dang refugee camp, Site II (Site Two) refugee camp, and a set of photographs taken by Dr. Jaimie Robertson in the early 1980s.

Chigas, George. Southeast Asians In Lowell Collection, 1987-1989. UML 2

This collection includes: two series, the Cambodian Traditional Crafts and Religious Ceremonies, 1987, and the Southeast Asian Exhibit Photographs, 1988-1989. The first series includes Chigas’ 84-page paper on Cambodian Traditional Crafts and Religious Ceremonies created in 1987 along with corresponding photographs. The project, funded in part by the Historic Preservation Commission of Lowell, Massachusetts, explores the traditional crafts and religious ceremonies of the Cambodian refugees who settled in Lowell in the aftermath of the Cambodian Genocide. The second series includes 20 photographs from a Lowell exhibit on Southeast Asians that was coordinated by George Chigas.

Gerson (Jeffrey) Collection

This collection includes:

Hayes, Kathleen and Updegrove, Stephen. Collection, circa 1981-1983. UML 12

The collection consists of 14 folders mostly containing correspondence between Stephen Updegrove and the International Rescue Committee, 3 historical artifacts, 5 publications on Southeast Asia, and 2 oversized art pieces housed in flat files.

Higgins, James (Jim). Lowell Books Collection, 1983-1997. UML 7

This collection includes: Jim Higgins' 3 books: Lowell, A Contemporary View; Southeast Asians: A New Beginning in Lowell; and Fractured Identities: Cambodia's Children of War.

Huy, Phousita S. Cambodian Art, Dance and Culture Video Collection, circa 1984-2003. UML 6

The Phousita S. Huy collection contains digital file versions of master dance teacher Phousita Huy’s videotape collection documenting Cambodian classical and folk dance performances between 1984-2003. Dance performers include students from the Royal University of Fine Arts (RUFA) in Cambodia, the Angkor Dance Troupe in Lowell, Massachusetts and the Dance Troupe of Cambodian American Heritage in Fort Washington, Maryland. Also included are videos about Angkor Wat, traditional Cambodian kite making and cultural performances at festivals as well as interviews with master teachers.

Indochinese Refugees Foundation, Inc. Collection, 1957-1996. UML 1

The Indochinese Refugees Foundation, Inc. (IRF) provided services to Southeast Asian refugees that were resettling in Lowell, Massachusetts during the 1980s, due to the ramifications of the Vietnam War and the Khmer Rouge.

This collection includes: detailed reports, financial records, correspondence, and resources that reveal the extent of the IRF’s work assisting refugees and its members’ involvement in the Lowell community.

Indochinese Refugees Foundation, Inc. Oral Histories, 2016. UML 4

Four oral history interviews with former staff and board members of the Indochinese Refugees Foundation, Inc., an organization that helped resettle Southeast Asian refugees in the greater Lowell, Massachusetts area during the 1980s. Oral histories were conducted with Jacqueline (Fidler) Moloney, Carol Keirstead, Elise Martin, Hai Pho, and Lan Pho.

KhmerPost USA Newspapers, 2007-2016. UML 8

The KhmerPost USA Newspaper is an independent biweekly newspaper printed in Khmer (Cambodian) and English.

This collection includes: digitized issues existing as PDFs published between 2007 to 2016.

Lowell Burmese Community Photograph Collection, 1996-2016. UML 3

Lowell community members from the country formerly known as Burma (present day Myanmar) representing the ethnic groups: Karenni, Karen, Kachin, and Bamar Muslim, donated scanned copies of personal print color photographs as well as digital photographs ranging from 1996-2016. Photographic subjects include family portraits, photographs of everyday life in refugee camps in Thailand and Malaysia, and Burmese cultural celebrations in both Burma and the United States. This collection also includes documents such as waivers, deeds of gift, and descriptions of photographs written by participants.

Lowell Southeast Asian Water Festival, Inc. Collection, 1997-2014. UML 20

This collection includes digitized Lowell Southeast Asian Water Festival, Inc. general files, event programs, and promotional materials.

The Lowell Sun

The Sun newspaper is a Lowell-based daily newspaper.

  • There is no finding aid for this newspaper.
  • An Center for Lowell History microfilm holdings, Lowell Historical Society print holdings, and Pollard Memorial Library microfilm holdings digital versions" target="_blank">inventory for this newspaper listing Center for Lowell History microfilm holdings, Lowell Historical Society print holdings, and Pollard Memorial Library microfilm holdings may be viewed at the Center for Lowell History Microfilm Collection inventory online.
  • The physical microfilm collection may be viewed on site at the Center for Lowell History.

Lowell Sun Newspaper Photograph Collection

(Lowell Historical Society)

This collection includes: print photographs taken by Lowell Sun newspaper photographers. Most photographs are dated 1963-1993. Area coverage include Boston, Lowell, Chelsmford, Groton, Haverhill, Lawrence, Malden, Peabody, Tewksbury, Westford, and others. Topics are wide ranging and include events (accidents, parades, protests, auto shows, carnivals, city fairs, explosions, flooding, Greek festival, Puerto Rican festival), holiday activities (Christmas), locations/landmarks (bridges, buildings, rivers, cemeteries, monuments), and more.

Lowell Telecommunications/Channel 6 News Collection

This collection includes: Channel 6 News video tapes and digital videos files created from the tapes. Topics are wide ranging.

New England Folklife Center Collection

This collection includes: artifacts, photographs, correspondence, publications, and etc on wide ranging topics including Vietnamese new year, Tsongas Industrial History Center, Lowell National Historical Park, Lowell Folk Festival, Lowell Folklife Project, teacher workshops, after school programs, Cambodian history, and institutional records.

Norkunas (Martha) Collection

This collection includes: materials on Lowell immigration, Lowell National Historical Park, Cambodian-American League of Lowell, Lowell Historic Preservation Commission, Lowell Public Schools. Also included are newspaper clippings, papers by various people, and photographs of various local businesses, Angkor Dance Troupe, and a Cambodian wedding.

Ripley, Anne. Collection, circa 1979-1982. UML 15

This collection consists of 5 boxes each housing a large collection of folders. Contents inside the folders include photographs, photo slides, several artifacts mostly consisting of clothing, and misc. documents related to Anne Ripley’s time spent living in Cambodia at Khao I Dang and Kamput refugee camps between 1979 and 1982.

SayDaNar Community Development Center. Our Journey to the American Dream, 2017. UML 18

The SayDaNar, Our Journey to the American Dream collection consists of the PDF version of the book, Our Journey to the American Dream. Published by SayDaNar Community Development Center, the book is a collection of stories retelling Burmese refugee experiences of leaving their homelands and settling in the United States.

Southeast Asian Digital Archive Oral History Project, 2019-Ongoing. UML 17

The oral history project mainly includes oral history interviews with Southeast Asians who arrived in the Greater Lowell, Massachusetts, area during 1970-1990s. To a smaller extent, the project also includes Southeast Asians and individuals who worked with Southeast Asian communities covering the geographical region of Massachusetts.

Southeast Asian Oral Histories

Since the mid-1980s, the Center for Lowell History has co-sponsored a number of Oral History Projects with members of Lowell’s Southeast Asian community.

Tsapatsaris, George N. and Dorothea. A City of Refugees, the Memories of Cambodia Collection, circa 1987-1991. UML 9

The George N. and Dorothea Tsapatsaris “A City of Refugees, the Memories of Cambodia” collection contains artwork, stories, letters, and other documents created by Dorothea Tsapatsaris’ young Cambodian students from the years of 1987-1990. Topics range from Cambodian clothing, ceremonies, and every day activities to food recipes, leaving Cambodia, and living in Lowell, Massachusetts. Also included are several photographs of Dorothea Tsapatsaris’ students, classroom, and student work; a couple of newspaper clippings; and material related to the 1990 “Memories of Cambodia” exhibit.

Tith, Vera T. and William A. Oral History Interview, 1993. UML 16

This collection consists of one audiocassette tape and a partial transcript of an oral history interview conducted by Sheila L. Kirschbaum with Vera Thong Tith and Michael An Tith on February 13, 1993. Topics covered include but are not limited to Vera and Michael’s children, their lives in Cambodia before they left, living and working in a Thailand refugee camp, resettling in the United States, and their lives now in Lowell, Massachusetts.

Video Collection

This collection includes: videos the Center for Lowell History has collected over the years. Topics include Lowell neighborhoods, the Cambodian Holocaust Project, Boott Mills interviews, Lowell events, Lowell immigration, churches, University of Massachusetts Lowell, Lowell Housing Authority, and more.