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Lee Kwai Pan


1878, Member "Orientals" baseball team

Pinyin & Chinese characters Li Guipan 李桂攀

Variant Spellings & Other Names

Lee Kai Pan
Lee Kwai Pan1
Li Kuei-p’an2
L. K. Pan3
Kwai Pahn Lee, "Pon Lee"4

Other Chinese Names Li Buyun 李步雲
Li Ban 李扳3

Detachment 2
LaFargue No. 48
Date of Birth 1860

Place of Birth Xiangshan, Guangdong

Age at Departure for U.S. 14 (Lunar Calendar)
Date of Death 9 January 18985

Place of Death New York City (Yonkers), NY5

Place(s) of residence in U.S.

(1) North Amherst and Gardner, MA
(2) Windsor, CT2
(3) Norwich, CT

American Host Family/ies (1) Rev. William D. & Josephine H. (Barton) Herrick, North Amherst and Gardner, MA6
(2) John B. Woodforth, Windsor, CT7
(3) Patrick Burke, New London, CT8

School(s), with dates West Middle Public School, Hartford, CT. graduated April 1877;
Norwich Free Academy, Norwich, CT, 1877-1881

Notable activities/ awards in school Member of the “Orientals“ baseball team. “Li Guipan, upon his graduation from the West Middle Public School in Hartford, was awarded First Prize in penmanship and received as a prize the Household Book of Poetry.9

College/University, with dates After returning to the U.S. (1882 or 1883), he enrolled in Lehigh University in 1883 but was unable to graduate.10
Notable activities/ awards in College

Degree/Diploma Obtained, with date  
First Assignment in China Assigned to study law in Tianjin but returned to U.S. (date uncertain) to finish his college education.

Later Positions

Employment sector(s) Business ("Tea Business in NYC."11)

Final rank, if in gov't service

Father's name Li Shiquan 李石泉

Mother's name  


Married, on Sunday, 5 March 1893, Elizabeth Standish Jewett, the daughter of his landlord while he was attending Norwich Academy.4
Family relations w/ other CEM students

Children's Names

No children.5


Other After his return to the U.S. Lee tried to continue his education at Lehigh University in 1883, but after only a year he was summoned to Washington to take up a position at the Chinese Legation where he served for four years.  In 1893 he went into business in New York, forming a partnership ("Henry and Lee") with an American, Frank H. Henry, to import Chinese products.9

"…It was while he was a student that he became acquainted with Miss Jewett, who is a daughter of the late Dr. Charles Jewett [1807-1879] of Norwich Town, the well-known temperance lecturer.  The young Chinaman, who was known as 'Pon Lee,' became quite a ball player and all-around athlete, and was very popular.  He is a member of the Congregational church and an active Christian."4

Notes and Sources

1. Springfield Daily Republican, 26 July 1873, 3.

2. Leung (1988b), 403; 404.

3. Signature: “Very truly yours / L. K. Pan / Hong Sun / China”, with characters 李扳 (Li Ban), in one of two autograph books of Yung Kwai (Rong Kui 容揆 II, 34).  Signature in second autograph book: “Yours truly / Lee Kwai Pan / Windsor / Conn Dec 2nd 1875”. Yung Kwai Papers, Archives and Manuscripts, Yale University Library, New Haven, CT.

4. The Anaconda Standard [Anaconda, Montana], 5 March 1893, 2:5: "Prominent or Peculiar".

5. Date and place of death: Rhoads (2011), p. 205; no children: probate records, Westchester County, NY (Edward J. M. Rhoads, email 19 Aug. 2008).

6. Rhoads (2011), p. 52, Table 5.1.

7. Leung (1988b), 404.

8. U.S. Census 1880; Robyn (1996), p. 186, n. 266: "Patrick Burke, Bean Hill, Norwich"; cf. Rhoads (2011), p.139, Table 9.2: "boarding with George H. Martin".

9. Robyn (1996), 41-42, citing Hartford Evening Post, 28 April 1877.

10. Rhoads (2011), p. 205.

11. LaFargue (1987), p. 174.