This is the "Asian-Pacific American Heritage Month" page of the "May Holidays" guide.
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Asian-Pacific American Heritage Month Print Page
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Carter G. Woodson

Image Citation:

Ikai, Tadashi. "Blue Ocean." Mezzotint Image. On the Cutting Edge. Library of Congress, n.d. Web. 30 Apr. 2013.

 

History of Asian-Pacific American Heritage Month

Like most commemorative months, Asian-Pacific Heritage Month originated in a congressional bill. In June 1977, Reps. Frank Horton of New York and Norman Y. Mineta of California introduced a House resolution that called upon the president to proclaim the first ten days of May as Asian-Pacific Heritage Week. The following month, senators Daniel Inouye and Spark Matsunaga introduced a similar bill in the Senate. Both were passed. On October 5, 1978, President Jimmy Carter signed a Joint Resolution designating the annual celebration. Twelve years later, President George H.W. Bush signed an extension making the week-long celebration into a month-long celebration. In 1992, the official designation of May as Asian-Pacific American Heritage Month was signed into law.

The month of May was chosen to commemorate the immigration of the first Japanese to the United States on May 7, 1843, and to mark the anniversary of the completion of the transcontinental railroad on May 10, 1869. The majority of the workers who laid the tracks were Chinese immigrants.

A rather broad term, Asian-Pacific encompasses all of the Asian continent and the Pacific islands of Melanesia (New Guinea, New Caledonia, Vanuatu, Fiji and the Solomon Islands), Micronesia (Marianas, Guam, Wake Island, Palau, Marshall Islands, Kiribati, Nauru and the Federated States of Micronesia) and Polynesia (New Zealand, Hawaiian Islands, Rotuma, Midway Islands, Samoa, American Samoa, Tonga, Tuvalu, Cook Islands, French Polynesia and Easter Island).

 

eBooks

Cover Art
Traditional Micronesian Societies - Glenn Petersen
ISBN: 9780824832483
Publication Date: 2009


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Destiny's Landfall: A History of Guam - Robert F. Rogers
ISBN: 0824816781
Publication Date: 1995

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Tahiti Beyond the Postcard - Miriam Kahn
ISBN: 9780295991016
Publication Date: 2011

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