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Excerpts from: The Filipino Americans (From 1763 to the Present)


The Filipino Americans

Although some Filipinos visited America many, many years ago, it was only in 1763 that Filipinos started to live in the United States. Seamen, called the Manilamen, jumped ship off New Orleans, Louisiana, and Acapulco, Mexico, during the Spanish galleon trade and settled in the bayous of Louisiana.

Since then, Filipino Americans quietly have made their indelible marks on America as politicians, doctors, judges, entrepreneurs, singers, scientists, professors, movie and television stars, etc. You name it, and there are many outstanding Filipino American achievers in every field of dreams.

Among the great Filipino American leaders are Ben Cayetano, governor of Hawaii; David Valderrama, delegate at the Maryland State Assembly; Velma Veloria, representative at the Washington State Assembly; Maria Luisa Mabilangan Haley, the highest ranking Filipino American official in the Clinton Administration; and Loida Nicolas Lewis, chair and CEO of TLC Beatrice International, a $1.8B business empire.

The Filipinos are expected to become the largest Asian American ethnic group by the year 2000. And yet, when many Americans refer to Asian Americans, they know more about the Japanese and the Chinese, than about the Filipinos. In fact, the Filipinos are often mistaken for Japanese or Chinese. The Filipino Americans, indeed, in spite of their achievements and contributions to American culture and society, are still a little-known ethnic group, as far as the American mainstream is concerned.

It is, therefore, the purpose of this author to make known who the Filipinos are. With this book, people of all ages and backgrounds can learn about the values, beliefs, culture, traditions, and characteristics that have fueled the Filipinos remarkable contributions to America.

Chapters on the Philippine Revolution (1896-1898), the Philippine-American War (1899-1902), and the Japanese Occupation of the Philippines (1942-1945) provide a historical backdrop for examining Philippine-American relations, and for commemorating the centennials of the Philippine Revolution (1896), the Philippine Independence (1898), and the Philippine-American War (1899).

It is also the purpose of this writer to correct history. This pertains to the Philippine-American War that American authorities havent recognized as a war, but as an insurrection, the Philippine Insurrection. While they recognized the three-month Spanish-American War as a war, they dismissed the Philippine- American war, that lasted three years (actually a number of years before resistance was totally stopped). Fighting between the Americans and the remaining armed groups of Filipinos, whom Americans branded as bandits, lasted 16 years (1899-1914).

Commenting on this subject, James Loewen, a Washington, D.C.-based scholar and author of a forthcoming book entitled Lies Across the Landscape: What Our Historical Markers and Monuments Get Wrong said, What we call the Philippine Insurrection should be called the Philippine War. We had never conquered the Philippines, so you cant call it as a revolt. Thats why in history books, Americans call the Philippine soldiers insurgents. The dictionary defines insurgent as a person who rises in forcible opposition to lawful authority, especially a person who engages in armed resistance to a government. The Filipino Americans, which took the author more than 20 years to think about and research and write, traces the Filipino history from the beginning of the peopling of the Philippines thousands of years ago to this present time in which they are still coming to America. A book of this kindcomprehensive, reader-friendly, and authoritativeshould have been written and published a long time ago. But only a few dared to do an extensive research on the Filipino history, culture, traditions, and lives of outstanding Filipino Americans. Still, this author decided to write and have it published, in spite of incredible odds. To the non-Filipino American, may this book give you a panoramic view of the historical ties that have bound the Philippines and the United States for the past many years.

To the Filipino and Filipino American, may this volume become your guiding light to see the beauty and uniqueness of our history, culture, and traditions; thus, becoming proud of our own race. If this book can help enhance the Filipino image in America and serve as an inspiration and enlightenment to the reader on the Filipinos history, values, beliefs, customs, and characteristics, and promote understanding and goodwill among races, then the efforts of the writer and publisher and those who helped in the monumental task of the books production, will not have been in vain. And, finally, one of my last major dreams in Americamy real American Dream, to write a complete history of the Filipino people and the Filipino Americans, which other people had said was too difficult to accomplishhas been realized. Now I can face the world and proudly say, This Ive done!

Veltisezar Velty B. Bautista
Farmington Hills, Michigan 48333
United States of America
February 1998

The Filipino Americans (From 1763 to the Present): Their History, Culture, & Traditions.
Veltisezar B. Bautista

About the Philippines, Filipinos and Filipino Americans
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