Philippines Emigration and Immigration
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If your ancestors emigrated from or immigrated to the Philippines, there may be a record in the Records Management and Archives Office or in the Commission on Immigration and Deportation, Department of Foreign Affairs. These records generally provide at least:
- The person’s name
- A place
- A date
Sometimes they give information about:
- Religious affiliation
- Tribute status
Spanish Emigration Records
The Spanish administration kept fairly detailed emmigration records. The Records Management and Archives Office has a small collection of passports (pasaportes), deportations (deportados), and foreign passports (pasaportes de estranjeros). However, Chinese passports were often recorded separately under Chinese passports (pasaportes de chinos).
Most of these records have been microfilmed and are available at the Family History Library. To find deportation records, see the FamilySearch Catalog, Locality section. Look for the county and then under “Emigration and Immigration.”
Foreign Travel and Foreign Service Records
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has records about people who emigrated, immigrated, or gave service in consulates and embassies in foreign countries. The address of the ministry is:
Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Metropolitan Manila, Philippines
Immigration and Naturalization Records (Radicación de extranjeros, Pasaportes, Naturalización de Españoles)
Research use: Very valuable for making proper connections to place of origin in other countries, and for pinpointing place of residence in the Philippines. Many researchers do not know their ancestor's place of origin.
Record type: Passenger lists, passports, certificates of residence, registers of foreigners, citizenship papers.
Time Period: 1800-present.
Content: Immigrant’s name, age, occupation, birth date and place, former residence, destination; wife’s name, childrens’ given names and ages or number of children; religion, race, nationality, sometimes picture. Chinese immigration records give names and places in Chinese characters.
Location: National Bureau of Records Management, port archives, municipal archives.
Population coverage: 15%.
Filipino Immigration to the United States
Some Filipino immigrants arrived in the United States as early as the mid-1700s, but most immigrants came after 1900. Changes in U.S. agricultural techniques on the West Coast and in Hawaii created a high demand for labor. While persons from many countries were recruited to work in Hawaiian sugar cane plantations, Filipinos were the best source of labor because the Philippines was under U.S. administration for the first few decades of the twentieth-century. Between 1900 and 1930 over 63,000 Filipinos immigrated to Hawaii and over 45,000 Filipinos immigrated to the mainland. Two excellent histories of immigration to the United States are:
- Mangiafico Luciano. Contemporary American Immigrants: Patterns of Filipino, Korean, and Chinese Settlement in the United States. New York, NY, USA: Praeger, 1988. (FHL book 973W2m.)
- Bautista, Veltisezar. The Filipino Americans, from 1763 to the Present: Their History, Culture, and Traditions. Farmington Hills, Michigan, USA: Bookhaus Publishers, 1998. (FHL book 973 F2bau.)
The Family History Library has several other good reference books that describe early Filipino immigration to the United States:
- Saito, Shiro. The Overseas Filipinos: A Working Bibliography. Honolulu, Hawaii, USA: University of Hawaii, 1974. (FHL book 959.9 A3t.)
- Lasker, Bruno. Filipino Immigration to Continental United States and to Hawaii, Volume 31. New York, New York, USA: Arno Press, 1969. (FHL book 973 B4ai; fiche 6101684.)
- Alcantara, Ruben R., Nancy S. Alcantara, and Cesar S. Wycoco. The Filipinos in Hawaii: An Annotated Bibliography. Honolulu, Hawaii, USA: Social Science Research Institute, University of Hawaii, 1972. (FHL book 996.9 F23a; film 1697759 item 7.)
- The Family History Department of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, “Family History Record Profile: Philippines,” Word document, private files of the FamilySearch Content Strategy Team, 1986-1999.