Filipino American History Month 2017

Did you know that October is Filipino American History Month (FAHM)? While it was established by the Filipino American National Historical Society in 1988, it wasn’t officially recognized nationally by Congress until 2009.

As I started to work on a FAHM post for the blog, I found the AARP / NextDayBetter video that came out earlier this month. For a video that’s only 7 minutes long, it does an incredible job of highlighting Filipino American contributions and history dating back to 1587! Most of which, I must say, was not in any of my history books growing up in New Jersey.

Some new things I learned from the video (including links to learn more) were:

  • Filipinos have been in what is now known as the continental United States since 1587 -
  • Many FIlipinos first formed settlements in Louisiana (Saint Malo) - link
  • Some Filipinos were at the 1904 St. Louis World’s Fair… on display - link
  • Filipino towns such as Stockton’s Little Manila served as a safe haven for labor migrants who were accused of stealing jobs… and women - link
  • The 1934 Congress restricted immigration from the Philippines to just 50 Filipinos per year - link
  • During WWII - 250,000 Filipinos served in the United States Armed Forces of the Far East - link
  • Filipino veterans in the Philippines were promised US citizenship and benefits, but the passing of the 1946 Rescission Act broke that promise - link
  • At one point, there were more Filipinos in the US Navy than the Philippines Navy - link
  • In 1965, the Immigration Act greatly expanded quotas (right around when my parents came to the US!), and by 1970 the Filipino community more than doubled. Population stats: 1930 - 45,000; 1970 - 343,00; 1980 - 774,000 - link
  • There are now over 4,000,000 Filipinos in the United States, and that’s just an estimation from 2011 - link

    And those are just a handful of the stats that are in the video!

    To watch the video in its entirety, click below and let us know what you learned!