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Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month: Home

AAPI Guide

About the Guide

Since 1990, the United States has observed Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month in May to "pay tribute to the contributions [that] generations of Asian/Pacific Americans have made to American history, society and culture" (Library of Congress). The purpose of this guide is to introduce visitors to library resources such as books and digital collections, as well as resources from around the Web, that highlight these many contributions.

The adoption of AAPIHM dates back to the late 1970s when an observance was proposed to Congress through two separate bills; one introduced by Representatives Frank Horton (NY) and Norman Y. Mineta (CA), and another by Senators Daniel K. Inouye (HI) and Spark Matsunaga (HI). Both bills were passed in October of 1978 by President Jimmy Carter. May was chosen as the month to hold the observance; it commemorates the first Japanese immigrants to the United States in May of 1843, and pays tribute to the many Chinese immigrants who were instrumental in the completion of the Transcontinental Railroad in May of 1869. Twenty years after its origin, President George H. W. Bush would sign a proclamation that established the month-long observance celebrated today.

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Source(s) and more about the observance: Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month 

The Oxford Handbook of Asian American History
Asian American Art
Making Asian American Film and Video
Last of Her Name
Here I Am children's picture book
Aloha Rodeo book cover
Music of the Ghosts
The Latinos of Asia
History of Asian Americans
Thanking the Moon children's picture book
The Song Poet
Sigh, Gone book cover
A Principled Stand
Suburban Sahibs
No Longer Human book cover
America Is in the Heart
Talk Thai

Angkor Wat Cambodia photo
Angkor Wat, Krong Siem Reap, Cambodia
Photo by Benn McGuinness on Unsplash

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