The Wing Chong Market

Lee Chong's grocery, while not a model of neatness, was a miracle of supply. It was small and crowded but within its single room a man could find everything he needed or wanted to live and to be happy--clothes, food, both fresh and canned, liquor, tobacco, fishing equipment, machinery, boats, cordage, caps pork chops. You could buy at Lee Chong's a pair of slippers, a silk kimono, a quarter pint of whisky and a cigar. You could work out combinations to fit almost any mood. The one commodity Lee Chong did not keep could be had across the lot at Dora's.

                                                    -- John Steinbeck's "Cannery Row"--the opening of Chapter 1.

Here's a look at this fabled Cannery Row landmark in 2001, after the death of Alicia DeNoon, long-time resident and proprietor, and before it's upstairs was condemned by the City for habitation. They selected a photo of mine of Alicia for her obituary in the Monterey Herald.

Wing Chong in 1957, Lewis Collection
Wing Chong and Kalisa's (La Ida Cafe) in 1958
Wing Chong fairly current
Wing Chong sign on th second floor porch
View of and from the Wing Chong porch
The brass dragon no longer on the Wing Chong porch
Back door of the Wing Chong
Upstairs entrance door to the Wing Chong
Door knob of  833 Cannery Row: portal to another time
The ice box where Ed Ricketts got his Burgermeister.
The ice box door where the "Frogs of Cannery Row" may have been stored by Lee Chong.

And now, to the inside, the second floor--which even fewer people have ever seen than those fortunates who have made it into Ed Ricketts Lab over the years. Please enjoy with profound reverence: for the Yees, for those that called it home over the decades, and for Alicia Harby DeNoon and her remarkable son, Marcus.

Sketch of Alicia in her upstairs quarters
The Chinese lantern in Alicia's bedroom
Thornton Harby's (DeNoon's) "Runyan's Gap"--after the fire at the cannery owned by Dale Runyan, 1981.
Marcus and the famous (to real Cannery Row insiders) "Wolf Room" wall, with a painting of it.
Yours Truly at this fabled Cannery Row image, inscribed "Hermann's 1935."
Marcus at the back steps.

Follow this link to the Bill Johnk historic scale model of the Wing Chong Market at it's premier, at the Maritime Museum of Monterey, upon its acquisition by the City of Monterey.

The Wing Chong in "Cannery Row, Again"


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