3 Thai American

Thai American

Infobox Ethnic group
group = Thai American

poptime = 199,559
.05 % of the US population
cite web |url=http://factfinder.census.gov/servlet/IPTable?_bm=y&-geo_id=01000US&-qr_name=ACS_2006_EST_G00_S0201&-qr_name=ACS_2006_EST_G00_S0201PR&-qr_name=ACS_2006_EST_G00_S0201T&-qr_name=ACS_2006_EST_G00_S0201TPR&-ds_name=ACS_2006_EST_G00_&-reg=ACS_2006_EST_G00_S0201:047;ACS_2006_EST_G00_S0201PR:047;ACS_2006_EST_G00_S0201T:047;ACS_2006_EST_G00_S0201TPR:047&-_lang=en&-redoLog=false&-format=|coauthors=United States Census Bureau|title=US demographic census|accessdate=2006-12-23]
popplace = California, Northeast, West Coast
langs = American English, Thai
rels = Buddhism
related = Thai people, Southeast Asian Americans, Asian Americans

A Thai American is an American of Thai descent.

History in U.S.

The first people from Thailand who immigrated to the United States were In and Chan, the famous Siamese twins, who came to the United States in 1830. They settled in White Plains, North Carolina, and used "Bunker" as their last name. Their descendants have continued to use "Bunker" as their last name until recently.

The first student to emigrate from Thailand was Mr. He Thien (original name "Thien Hee"), who came with an American missionary, and graduated from a New York medical college in 1871.He was the father of former Prime minister of Thailand Pote Sarasin.

*From 1961-1970, about 5,000 Thai immigrated to the United States.
*From 1971-1980, about 44,000 Thai immigrated to United States.
*From 1981-1990, about 64,400 Thai immigrated to United States.

In 1993, there were an estimated 120,000 persons of Thai descent living in the United States. Fact|date=January 2008

Areas of greatest concentration

Los Angeles, California has the largest Thai population outside of Thailand. Roughly 66% percent of all Thai Americans live in Los Angeles.Fact|date=February 2007 It is also home to the world's first and only Thai Town. In 2002, there was an estimated 80,000+ Thai immigrants living in Los Angeles. Thai Chinese are also included in the population. Because of this, Los Angeles is sometimes referred to as Thailand's 77th province.

Bangkok and Los Angeles are both known as the "City of Angels".

However, there are Thai communities spread throughout the US. Other cities with sizable Thai populations include Chicago, Illinois, Houston, Texas, Providence, Rhode Island and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Cultural influence on America

Thai Americans are well known for bringing the cuisine of their native Thailand to America. Thai cuisine is popular in many American cities. It is currently popular for American restaurants to offer Thai influenced dishes.

Thai culture's prominent popularity in the United States is somewhat disproportionate to the percentage of Thai Americans in the total population. This is largely due to the U.S. presence in Thailand and Laos during the Vietnam War, which exposed American soldiers to Thai culture, and to the subsequent influx of Thai Americans and Laotian Americans. According to the 2000 census there were 196,893 Laotians and 150,093 Thai residents in the United States. Thai and Lao cultures and language are very similar especially in the northern Isan region of Thailand.

Political involvement

Traditionally, political involvement in the Thai American community seldom exists. However, with the recent events in Thailand with the controversy over former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra, activity in the Thai community has increased. Prior to his overthrow, there have been protests at the Thai consulate in Los Angeles.

On November 7, 2006, Gorpat Henry Charoen became the first and only US elected official of Thai descent. He was elected to the La Palma City Council in California. Then on December 18, 2007, Gorpat Henry Charoen became the first Mayor of Thai descent in the US. In the Asian American mainstream, Chinese Americans, Indian Americans, Japanese Americans, Filipino Americans, Vietnamese Americans, and Korean Americans have been elected to political offices. Two Thai Americans ran in municipal elections in 2003, one in Anaheim, California and the other in Houston, Texas (the candidate who ran in Houston was a native Houstonian); both candidates lost.

Tammy Duckworth, a Thai American Iraq war veteran, ran for election under the Democratic ticket to Congress in Illinois's sixth district in the 2006 mid-term election. Had she not been narrowly defeated, she would have been the first Thai American in Congress.

Notable individuals

*Chang and Eng Bunker
*Mike Chat
*Tammy Duckworth
*Porntip Nakhirunkanok
*Brenda Song
*Tiger Woods
*Tata Young
*Lada Engchawadechasilp
*Johnny Damon
*Lyla Lei
*Nichkhun Horvejkul
*S.P. Somtow
*Alex Sink
*Ellen McDermott

ee also

*Thai people
*Asian Americans


# [http://www.census.gov/prod/2004pubs/censr-17.pdf We the People Asians in the United States Census 2000 Special Reports]
# [http://www.imdiversity.com/Villages/Asian/world_international/pns_thai_unrest_0306.asp Vong, Pueng. Unrest in the Homeland Awakens the Thai Community IMDiversity March 29,2006]
# [http://www.aaa-fund.org/main/candidates.asp#duckworth Asian American Action Fund 2006 endorsed candidates]


External links

* [http://www.ThaiNewYork.com ThaiNewYork.com]
* [http://www.thaitownusa.com/frontnews/index.aspx Thaitown USA News]
* [http://www.apacnews.net/ Asian Pacific Newspaper]
* [http://www.siammedia.org/ Siam Media Newspaper]
* [http://www.sereechai.com/ Sereechai Newspaper]

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