Gran Oriente Filipino

 

The Gran Oriente is a Filipino fraternal lodge and mutual aid society that provided for the social welfare of Filipinos at a time when unions and greater society were hostile to minorities, segregated and ignored them. First established in San Francisco, Salinas, Stockton, and Sacramento in the 1920s, the lodges served a mainly bachelor community of farm laborers, cannery workers and domestic servants. This paper will analyze the historical development of Gran Oriente as a concrete strategy to protect and promote the community’s well being, situating Gran Oriente with other, similar organizations that allowed early Filipino immigrants to exercise their agency. Gran Oriente played a crucial in sustaining the early Filipino community and promoted a transnational sense of identity.