Filipino Immigration To Hawaii
The population total of the Filipinos in Hawaii was 17.1 percentof the total Hawaii population in 1930. About 120,000 Filipinos came between 1906- 1931. The Filipino word for farm workers was “sakada”. When they came,there weremore men than women, because the sugar plantations wanted laborers. There were onlya few children. Some single men went back to the Philippines or went to Californiaafter their contracts were over. Men came to work in the sugar cane fields becausework was scarce in the Philippines. I interviewed my grandpa and he told me abouthis father when he came to Hawaii as a sakada.
My great grand father was about 21 years old in the Phillippines many years ago andhe had been fishing when 22 boats came to his village. These boats where full ofyoung Filipino men. They asked him to go with them to Hawaii. He asked his parentsfor permission to go. They told him to go and earn money for himself.
The Filipinos were the last major ethnic group to migrate to Hawaii. At one time6,000 men and 3,000 women were imported to Hawaii because of labor shortage causedby World War II. The Filipinos wanted to go back, but they were afraid because ofloss of contact with their family. They stayed for work instead, after the war.
My great grandfather came by boat. He worked on a sugar plantation on Oahu as a sakada.He was in his 30’s when he married in Hawaii. He had 3 children. Their mother watchedover the children as they went to school and got older. When the children reached20 years of age, great grandfather left with his wife and went back to the Philippines.My grandfather was one of those 3 kids who remained. He went to college in Missouriand married my grandmother, who is Irish, French, German and English. They came backto Hawaii to live after college.
My grandmother was a secretary for Wang Laboratories downtown and grandpa was a salesmanfor B.B.B.K.(Bug Burgers Bug Killers). This was an exterminator company. They had4 kids and adopted 1 child. My mother is the youngest and didn’t get to go to collegebecause I came along when she was 17.
The son was in the army and he fought in Desert Storm. He now is an Air Traffic Controller.My aunty went to college for 2 years and now works in construction. My other auntyjust finished college and is working as a nurse. The adopted son works for a packingcompany. All of these children have Filipino in them.
I have 7 nationalities: Filipino, Portuguese, Puerto Rican, French, German, Englishand Irish. The Filipino part started way back with my great grandfather.
1. Lind, Andrew W., HAWAII’S PEOPLE, Honolulu, The University Press of Hawaii, 1967.
2. FILIPINOS IN HAWAII. . .THE FIRST 75 YEARS, Hawaii Filipino News Specialty Publications,1977.
3. Interview with John Perio., my grandfather on February 12, 1998.
4 . For my pictures I used the Macglobe program.
Chinese Immigration to Hawaii
In China the opportunities were limited . Some of the Chinesehad to till their own soil to support their families . There was famine , and theeconomy was low. When the harvest was good, only then would the family eat . Therewas clan warfare which destroyed plenty of people, buildings, houses, etc. It wasonly natural to want a better life than what they had. So the people fled, and somewere kidnapped, made into slaves.
Some of the people came to Hawaii to be contract laborers becausethey could not find enough to support their families in China. They hoped for a betterlife than what they had . The sugar plantations sent people to China to get fieldlaborers. They sent a British ship and brought contract laborers for hard labor forfive years . After their contracts were over, many Chinese had the choice to go hometo China or stay in Hawaii.
The Chinese were the first of the different ethnic types to be brought to Hawaii for plantation purposes. Soon the number of Chinese was getting too high and theemployers were afraid that they might lose control over the contracted laborers .So, they started bringing different ethnic groups such as the Japanese, Portuguese,and Puerto Ricans. My great, great grandfather was one who came and stayed in Hawaii.
My great grandfather changed his first name to his last name. His name was Tinloy Chow and it became Chow Tinloy. My grandpa’s name was American . They named him Robert Tinloy. My grandmother then met my grandfather and they married. They had two children named Indria ( my mom ) and Miles . Then my mother met my dad and they have threechildren . Those are my brtoher Sheldon , my sister Shaila, and I am Shayne . We got our father’s last name and it is Smiley.
My greatgrandpa was first to marry another ethnic group. He married a Hawaiian. Thenmy grandpa married a Filipino. Then my mom married my dad who is African American, and other nationalities. So I am of many different ethnic backgrounds.
1] kodama-Nishimoto, Michi, Nishimoto, Warren S. ,and Oshiro , Cynthia A., Hanahana,an oral history anthology of Hawaii working people copyright 1984 by Ethnic StudiesOral History Project, University of Hawaii at Manoa
2] Asia Americans In Hawai1 by Young, Nancy Foon
University of Hawaii, Honolulu HI, 96822 1975
3] My brother Smiley, Sheldon gave me the information about my relatives.
4] My mother Smiley , Indria , help me to organize names of my relatives.