Celebrating Asian American Pacific Islander Heritage Month

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Model, sampan carved out of a litchi or lychee nut. The Mariners’ Museum and Park Collection 1959.0072.000001.

May is Asian American Pacific Islander Heritage Month, officially designated on May 1, 2009. Throughout the month, celebration and recognition are shed on the accomplishments and influences of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders in United States history and culture. Asia is comprised of 48 countries and several territories while the areas of Melanesia (New Guinea, New Caledonia, Vanuatu, Fiji, and the Solomon Islands), Micronesia (Marianas Islands, including 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) make up the Pacific Islands.

The Museum holds a vast collection of images, paintings, textiles, boats, and other artifacts that represent various cultures from around the world. I decided to take a deep dive into our Collection to highlight a few artifacts that represent Asian and Pacific Islanders’ history and culture.   Read more