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The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 12, 1864


Captain Douglass and Watchman Hager boarded the ship Clara Morse, on Sunday morning, the moment she arrived, and captured nineteen Chinese girls, who had been stolen and brought from Hongkong to San Francisco to be sold. They were a choice lot, and estimated to be worth from one hundred and fifty to four hundred dollars apiece in this market. They are shut up for safe-keeping for the present, and we went and took a look at them yesterday; some of them are almost good-looking, and none of them are pitted with small pox - a circumstance which we have observed is very rare among China women. There were even small children among them - one or two not two years old, perhaps, but the ages of the majority ranged from four teen to twenty. We would suggest, just here that the room where these unfortunates are confined is rather too close for good health - and besides, the more fresh air that blows on a Chinaman, the better he smells. The heads of the various Chinese Companies here have entered into a combination to break up this importation of Chinese prostitutes, and they are countenanced and supported in their work by Chief Burke and Judge Shepheard. Now-a-days, before a ship gets her cables out, the Police board her, seize the girls and shut them up, under guard, and they are sent back to China as soon as opportunity offers, at the expense of the Chinese Companies, who also send an agent along to hunt up the families from whom the poor creatures have been stolen, and restore to them their lost darlings again. Our Chinese fellow citizens seem to be acquiring a few good Christian instincts, at any rate.

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