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The Smithsonian Institution
Filipino American Centennial Celebration site offers an interactive journey through Filipino-American history. Lesson plan units include: Philippine history, geography, people, traditions; immigration and colonialization; Filipino-American history, and contemporary issues.


KQED, Northern California's PBS Station, offers lesson plans on Asian immigration to the U.S.



The Hawaii Filipino Experience

What are the contributions of Filipinos to the multicultural fabric of Hawaii? How can the Mabuhay with Aloha story increase our understanding of our world and the people around us? These education resources can help. Follow the links for additional resources, watch the DVD, and take the Mabuhay with Aloha history pop quiz to see what you learned!

Coming to Hawaii. The Mabuhay with Aloha story reflects the events that shaped Hawaii from annexation to the 21st century. Hawaii became an American possession 1898, the same year the Philippines came under U.S. rule as part of the agreement that ended the Spanish-American War.

The Hawaii Sugar Planters Association (HSPA) was enjoying the fruits of a growing sugar industry, but its usual labor sources were drying up. Fears of the "yellow peril" resulted in the Chinese Exclusion Act, which barred importation of Chinese workers. A Gentleman's Agreement limited the number of Japanese laborers to the U.S. As a new American colony, the Philippines would be subject to fewer immigration laws. In 1906, the HSPA sent its lawyer, A.F. Judd, to Manila to begin recruitment efforts. Although Judd came back with only 15 men--the first sakada or Filipino migrant workers, the HSPA ultimately brought 126,000 Filipinos to Hawaii to work in the sugar cane and pineapple fields.

A growing population. Filipinos now make up the third largest group in the islands, and their numbers are growing via continuous immigration, averaging about 3,000 new residents to Hawaii annually. Nationally, Filipinos are the fastest-growing Asian immigrant group.

Recent immigrants face challenges common to all newcomers: language and cultural differences; social, educational, and economic barriers; and adjustment difficulties. But today, Hawaii's Filipinos can claim the first U.S. governor, mayor, and Senate president of Filipino ancestry. And Filipino leaders can be found in all arenas in the state and around the country.

Filipino Centennial Celebration. One hundred years ago, Hawaii began welcoming the first significant numbers of Filipinos to American shores. From Hawaii, many of the sakada made their way to the Mainland, often providing the labor for the fruit and vegetable harvests on the West Coast.

The Hawaii State Legislature established the Filipino Centennial Celebration Commission to oversee dozens of commemorative events throughout the islands. National conferences are being held in Hawaii during this centennial year by the Filipino American Historical Society, the National Federation of Filipino American Associations, and the Centers for Philippine Studies at U.S. universities. And throughout the nation, other celebrations are being held, among them the Smithsonian's Filipino Centennial of America.

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