Welcome to the Smithsonian
Filipino American Heritage Website!



The Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Program proudly welcomes you to the Filipino American heritage website!

In 1906, the first significant numbers of Filipino immigrants arrived in Hawai'i to work on the island's sugar plantations. Until 1935, many more came as migrant laborers to West Coast farms and Alaskan canneries. After World War II, approximately 7,000 Filipino soldiers received U.S. citizenship and, in 1945, the War Brides Act permitted Filipino wives of U.S. military to immigrate.

The 1965 Immigration Act paved the way for Filipino professionals to enter the United States, many of them in the medical field. This latest wave of immigration brought major changes in gender and class in the Filipino American community which now numbers 2.36 million. Filipino Americans constitute the second largest APA group overall, second to Chinese Americans, according to the 2000 Census.