By the late 19th century, fear had already begun in North America over Chinese immigration supplying cheap labor to lay railroad tracks, mostly in California and elsewhere in the West Coast. In xenophobic jargon common in the day, ordinary workers, newspapers and politicians uniformly opposed this "Yellow Peril". The common cause to eradicate Asians from the workforce gave rise to the Asiatic Exclusion League. When the fledging Indian community of mostly Punjabi Sikhs settled in California, the xenophobia expanded to combat not only the East Asian Yellow Peril, but now the immigrants from British India, colorfully described as the Turban Tide (a reference to Sikh Turbans as almost all of the immigrants at the time were Punjabi Sikhs).
Anti-miscegenation laws discouraging interracial marriage between white Americans and non-whites affected South Asian immigrants as early as the 17th century, when the East India Company brought over Indian indentured servants to British American colonies, and continued into the early 20th century. For example, a Eurasian girl born to an Indian father and Irish mother in Maryland in 1680 was classified as a "mulatto" and sold into slavery. In the early 20th century, the Bengali revolutionary Dr. Tarak Nath Das's white American wife, Mary K. Das, was stripped of her American citizenship for her marriage to an "alien ineligible for citizenship."
- Francis C. Assisi (2005). "Indian-American Scholar Susan Koshy Probes Interracial Sex". INDOlink. http://www.indolink.com/displayArticleS.php?id=111605054006. Retrieved 2009-01-02.