As we moved to the end of our tour we came to the Filipino houses. One house was a dorm showing how all the single Filipinos lived. By and large they came to America in hopes of making their fortunes so that they could go back home rich men.
That bubble was burst when they arrived on the plantations, the last wave of immigrants, brought in for labor. Their long hours, treacherous work conditions and the very, very low pay made it impossible to save money. Their hopes of returning to the Philippines faded as the years wore on.
When they arrived they did not bring wives with them and in many places the ratio of Men to women was 20 to 1. Not having wives you can appreciate the following photos that show the bachelor conditions.
The above photo shows the threshold into the bachelor quarters. The small piece in the middle is removable for a purpose. When sweeping the house they could remove the piece and sweep the dirt out the door on to the grounds. Now tell me that isn’t clever?
Unfortunately not much was told to us about these rooms and we went through them so quickly that I barely got these photos.
Being that there were no women in the lives of these men fantasy must have played a large part in their world as seen by the decorations on their walls.
I am thinking that these posters that are seen here would have been very hard to come by during those days so I am not sure what they represent.
However, I do believe they may have taken photos out of the movie star magazines and posted them on their wall.
The weekend became a big event for these men as they would spend their earnings on going out and paying to dance with women. This would be the only time they would have any contact with them. If they were to meet any prospective bride it would have had to have been from the immigrant or Hawaiian population as they were forbidden to marry white women.
The Filipino men liked to play music and have parties. The lunas referred to them at times as children with their carefree ways. But I wonder if the shoe was on the other foot would they cut loose too as they saw their hopes and dreams slipping away? Would these bosses need to forget about where they are and the dim light of their future?
Today, we have many Filipinos in the government and even have had a Filipino governor. All of the immigrants from the many different countries contributed to the islands in their food, ethics and culture. They survived the trial by fire making them a very strong people and it is their generations that today make Hawaii the diverse melting pot that it is.