Story last updated at 10/2/2012 - 1:10 pm
According to Filipina-American author and former state legislator Themla Buchholdt, the first Filipino immigrant arrived in Alaska aboard a merchant ship in 1788. Today, some 18,000 Filipino-Americans live in Alaska, comprising the state's largest Asian American population.
In conjunction with National Filipino-American History Month, the Alaska State Museum celebrates the Filipino-American community's significant contributions and accomplishments with a special exhibit opening on First Friday, Oct. 5. A reception will be held from 4-7 p.m., featuring refreshments and several Filipino dishes.
On display will be art and clothing from the Philippines, as well as two dance costumes, one used in Bagobo tribal dances on the island of Mindanao and the other from the Cordillera Mountain region of Luzon used in the Ragragsakan dance. The exhibit also includes historical photographs highlighting 225 years of cultural exchange between Filipinos and Alaskans, as well as Filipino contributions to the whaling, canning and mining industries.