Frequently Asked Questions

Why did they move to North Carolina?
The Siamese Twins came to reside in western NC as the result of an invitation from a physician friend to visit the area for some hunting and fishing. They liked it and decided to build a home and stay.

Where did they live?
The Twins moved to Mount Airy and lived in the same house for 12 years before they built two homes. The Eng and Chang Bunker Bridge crosses Stewart’s Creek, the body of water that divided their land when they built the second home.

Did they leave a will?
The wills of Eng and Chang Bunker are shown in the Siamese Twins exhibit. They summarize the Twins’ family values and their focus on the education of all of their children.

Were they United States citizens?
Eng and Chang Bunker were the first Asians to become citizens of this country. When they became American citizens, it was actually not legal for them to do so.

What was their political affiliation?
Eng and Chang were Whigs.

Did they fight in the Civil War?
Eng and Chang each had a son who fought in the Confederate army. Each son was captured and held in a prisoner of war camp. The sons wrote home about their experiences. Both returned home following the war.

What was their religion?
Eng and Chang were the first Buddhists to enter America. This is documented by the Siamese Buddhist text that they brought with them into this country.

Did they have a family?
Eng and Chang remain the only conjoined twins to have children.

How did they die?
Chang developed pneumonia and died. Their physician had promised to separate them if one died. A son went to get the physician following Chang’s death but did not get back in time. Eng died a few hours after Chang.

What about Eng's Wife?
Sarah died on April 29, 1892. Sarah is not buried with the Twins at White Plains Baptist Church. She was buried in a cemetery with slaves and some of her children on Bunker property near the church.

What about Chang's Wife?
Adelaide died at the age of 94 on May 21, 1917. At that time, the bodies of Eng and Chang were moved to the church cemetery and Adelaide was buried with them.

What happened to the twins after their death?
The bodies of Eng and Chang were autopsied at The College of Physicians of Philadelphia. Extensive data and photographs of the autopsy are in the Mütter Museum of The College of Physicians of Philadelphia files. The livers of the Twins, demonstrating the nature of their connection, are also on display at the Mütter.

What about their children?
Their last living child, Robert E. Bunker, died on January 25, 1951.

Any grandchildren?
One grandchild of the twins is still living.

Recommended Reading

The Two by Irving and Amy Wallace

The Lives of Chang and Eng: Siam’s Twins in Nineteenth-Century America by Joseph Orser

Duet for a Lifetime by Kay Hunter

Books are available at the Andy Griffith Museum Gift Shop and on Amazon.