Japan started an armed conflict with China in 1937 that eventually exploded into World War II in 1941. Overseas Chinese around the world rallied to make financial contributions to organizations such as the United China Relief Fund to aid China in its struggle for survival.
Chinese all over the United States showed their patriotism by contributing funds to support China’s war effort. In Memphis, Tennessee, Lam Soon, a successful restaurateur who operated the Mandarin Inn and his wife spearheaded fundraising efforts for China. An article in The Memphis Commercial Appeal publicized a “Feast of the Lanterns” dance and auction fundraiser held at the Peabody Hotel, which was attended by the celebrated actress, Tallulah Bankhead. The photograph in the article showing Mrs. Lam Soon and some of the event planners was taken at the Mandarin Inn.
Articles from the Press Scrimitar (below) described another fundraising event held at the Loew’s Palace Theater and gave Mr. Lam Soon recognition for his leadership role in the fundraising efforts for China.