Detroit's Chinatowns

The Robert and Mary Ann Bury Community Gallery is a changing exhibition space made available to local historical societies, museums, non-profit organizations and educational institutions, selected for their contributions to the metro Detroit community. Organizations are featured in order to share their stories and provide new perspectives on the issues, ideas and individuals that have shaped our region’s rich history.

It was officially renamed as a tribute to retiring long-time Executive Director Bob Bury and dedicated in a ceremony on November 1, 2018.   

Our Community Gallery program received the 2020 Leadership in History Award from the American Association for State and Local History! Learn more 


OPENING ON OCTOBER 7, 2023 in the Robert and Mary Ann Bury Community Gallery

Detroit's Chinatowns

Detroit’s Chinatowns celebrates the stories and resilience of our city’s Chinese community beginning with the earliest immigrants to arrive - more that 150 years ago.  

As more new comers settled in the city, Detroit’s first Chinatown began to flourish on 3rd Avenue just west of downtown, in the early 1900s. The neighborhood was home to Chinese families who ran restaurants, laundries, shops, and other businesses before urban renewal forced the community to relocate in the 1950s.  

Detroit’s second Chinatown came together in the Cass Corridor near the intersection of Cass Ave and Peterboro Street. The community continued to thrive in this location into the 1960s when acts of violence against Chinese Americans, and the uprising of 1967 set off the slow decline of Detroit’s Chinatown through the 1970s and 80s. Today, the Chinatown pagoda still stands at Cass and Peterboro to honor the history of Detroit’s Chinatown community. 

Chinese families of Detroit’s first Chinatown remember attending church and Chinese school, watching Chinese opera and movies, and traveling to Belle Isle to picnic and play mahjong on weekends with hundreds of other Chinese families. This community-curated exhibit includes a timeline of Chinatown news, oral histories from Chinatown families, artifacts from Chinatown businesses, and a several interactives, including Chinese mahjong.