The Southeast Asian Archive at the University of California, Irvine was established in 1987 to document the experiences of the thousands of refugees and immigrants from Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam (the countries of the former Indochina) who resettled in the United States after the end of the Vietnam War in 1975. Over 40% of these newcomers have made California their home.
The Archive collects materials relating to the refugees who left their homes as boat people and land refugees, the resettlement of these refugees in the United States (and to a lesser extent, worldwide), the development and growth of Southeast Asian American communities, and the culture and history of Cambodia, Laos, and Vietnam. A special emphasis is placed on Southeast Asian Americans in Orange County (home to UC Irvine) and the rest of California. The largest Vietnamese community outside of Vietnam, known as Little Saigon, has grown up a few miles north of the UCI campus, and the largest Cambodian community outside of Cambodia, known as Little Phnom Penh, is in Long Beach, about 20 miles up the coast. Significant populations of the other ethnic groups are located elsewhere in the state.
The Archive is a unit of the Department of Special Collections and Archives in the University of California, Irvine Libraries.
For more information, visit the Archive’s website.