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  • Emily Pan

Ah Louis Store

Updated: Jan 3, 2021

Ah Louis Store today (Photo courtesy of Elliot Gong)

The historic Ah Louis Store identifies with Ah Louis, a Chinese American pioneer, and is a symbol of the Chinese American population in San Luis Obispo.

About the Ah Louis Store:

  • A two-story, Victorian Italianate-style building

  • Built in 1874 and made of wood

  • About 2000 square feet in size

  • In 1885, the building was replaced with bricks from Ah Louis' own brickyard, with the help of Alfred Walker

  • Bricks still stand to this day

  • To read more about the Ah Louis Store, click here.

Significance of the Ah Louis Store:

  • Was the center of Chinatown in San Luis Obispo from 1874 - 1930

  • Served as the pharmacy, "...general store, post office, bank, employment office, and gathering place" (Ah Louis Store -- Asian-Pacific American Heritage Month).

  • Also the center of Chinese celebrations, such as Chinese New Year gatherings and firework shows

  • Housed Ah Louis' family from 1885 - 1936

  • "The Ah Louis Store was listed in the National Register of Historic Places on March 26, 2008" (Ah Louis Store -- Asian-Pacific American Heritage Month).

California Registered Historical Landmark No. 802 (Photo courtesy of Elliot Gong)

Works Cited

“Ah Louis Store -- Asian-Pacific American Heritage Month.” National Parks Service, U.S. Department of the Interior,


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