Between the 16th to 18th centuries, Filipino sailors who abandoned Spanish ships routing the Manila Acapulco Galleon Trade first settled in Louisiana and made a living by fishing. The exodus of Filipinos to the United States came after the American Colonization of the Philippines in the 1900’s.
Qualified Filipino students were granted scholarship to American colleges and universities, while children of the elite were also sent overseas for further education. Many of the scholars became self-supporting and eventually married and raised their own families in the United States. The second group of Filipinos was employed as laborers in the plantations of Hawaii, California and the fishing villages of Alaska.
Immigration of Filipinos dwindled in the 1930’s and increased again in the 1960’s with the recruitment from Clark Air Force Base and Subic Naval Base. Many of the Filipino civilian employees were granted Visas to the United States.
In the 1980’s, Filipino women came as “pen pal” or “mail order brides” to American men. Over the years, Filipinos became active in arts and letters, business, engineering and technology, fashion and pageantry, health sciences, labor, military, politics and music.
Filipino Americans are the second largest ethnic Asian migrants in the United States.
Link to social media in Kuwait for more stories about Filipinos http://kabayaninkuwait.com/
(photo credit to a friend’s FB account)