First Group of Puerto Ricans in Hawaii

Today in history — December 23, 1900 — the first significant group of Puerto Ricans arrived in Honolulu Harbor on the ship “Rio de Janeiro.” As the ship was approaching the harbor, the eighty-one men, women, and children from Puerto Rico and Italy gathered on the steamer’s deck and were eating bananas and singing native songs.

Only half the original passengers arrived. The other half ran away in California after they were told that they would become slaves to the Chinese and work for only twenty-five cents a day.

Read more about it in “Porto Ricans Are at last Landed.”

“Porto Ricans Are at last Landed”
Evening bulletin., December 24, 1900, Page 4, Image 4


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