0.29% of the U.S. population (2018)
|Regions with significant populations|
|American English, Honduran Spanish|
|Predominantly Roman Catholic|
|Related ethnic groups|
|other Hispanic and Latino Americans|
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Honduran Americans (Spanish: honduro-americano, norteamericano de origen hondureño or estadounidense de origen hondureño) are Americans or US citizens of Honduran heritage, who belong to one or more ethnic groups such as Mestizo, White, Lenca, Ladino people, Miskito people, Garifuna, and Creole peoples. The Honduran population at the 2010 Census was 837,694. Hondurans are the eighth largest Hispanic group in the United States and the third largest Central American population, after Salvadorans and Guatemalans.
The first Hondurans came to United States during the late 18th and early 19th centuries, by the time during Honduras was known as the Intendencia de Comayagua, later in 1820 changed its name to province of Comayagua in the Viceroyalty of New Spain, and later gained its independence from the Spanish Crown, founded as the republic of Honduras. It then for a short time became a part of the Mexican empire between 1822 and 1823, when the Empire started to collapse Honduras decided to became part of the Central American federation from 1823 to 1838.
By the beggining of the century Honduras and the United States haf a closer relation, permitting U.S and Honduran citicens move to one country to another due the fact of the banana companies, one Honduran american of this era was Steve Van Buren, born in the city of la Ceiba, that by the time haved an economic growth. Despite dictatorships and wars, most Hondurans, which were mostly farmers and workers, had a stable way of life with few social changes until the mid and late 20th century when constant far-right coups started. All periods of conflict have led to minor waves of Honduran emigration to the United States. Such was the case after the 1956 military coup, however not very significant due the fact that in the 60s and 70s Honduras was one on the lowest crime rates countries in the globe, by only one criminal in between 100,000 people, so low and middle class people in the big cities still had a safe and stable life.
Hondurans immigrated to the United States in the 1960s, primarily to Miami, New York City, and Los Angeles. The main reason for Hondurans to leave their country during that decade was to escape poverty of the rural areas and to escape the military regimes that were against personal freedom in hopes of establishing a better life in the United States. Honduran migration as we know it started until the late 1980's when Honduras started an economic and political decline. Other minor Honduran migration was by the Jewish-Hondurans that left the country after the 2009 coup due to the rise of political tension.
Hondurans are one of the biggest Hispanic communities among Mexicans, Puerto Ricans, and Cubans. The cities with most Honduran-Americans are New Orleans, New York City, Miami, and Los Angeles. Most of them had undertaken in business, such as the opening of coffee shops, others take advantage of their university studies to provide services to the American society. Many Hondurans migrated legally, many haved joined illegal Mexican migrants amog other Central american people that cross Mexico, in 2018 came the migrant caravan. The caravan started due the Honduran political crisis and the electoral fraud of Juan Orlando Hernández, who was accused of corruption and political repression and the rise of drug cartels.
Different historians, sociologists, and politologists haved made different hypotheses for the cause of the Honduran migrations, some point to the institutional corruption, others point to the fact that Honduras is still controlled by a tiny oligarchy that has a monopoly on the country, others expressed that Honduras is the example of the failure of the neo-liberal model and the privatization of state owned industries. However, the most popular hypothesis involves the Honduran economic system and U.S Military interventions during the past decades.
Cold War roots
Many analysts point out that one of the main, if not the main, factor in the current massive migration of Hondurans beginning in the late 80's early 90's was the United States military occupation in Honduras and its enormous influence on Honduras since the time of the Reagan's presidency. The 1980s were a period full of invasion and occupation of U.S. soldiers in Honduran soil.
The United States under the Reagan administration government ordered hundreds of U.S. soldiers that were stationed at the nearby Palmerola Base during that period under the excuse of stopping socialism in Central America. It was another mission of the U.S to wipe out any communism that was occurring in Honduras. President Reagan saw Honduras as an strategic point to grow U.S influence in the Region. This event was key to the relationship between the U.S and Honduras.
Ties to American companies
Others point out that the start of migration of Hondurans is rooted in U.S. based banana and mining companies such as Standard Fruit Company and Rosario Mining Company. These companies in words of some analysts transformed Honduras in a kind U.S colony similar to Cuba and Puerto Rico during the early 20th centrury and companies exploited many of their workers:
"American companies haved built new railroads and infraestructure in Honduras, but at the time established their own banking systems, bringed its own laws, and bribed government officials at a dizzying pace.”
Much of the wealth that was accumulated in Honduras was carried off to New Orleans, New York, and Boston. The conditions for Honduran workers worsened and much of the meanwhile Honduran lands were being owned by U.S. companies. As a result, many Hondurans felt isolated in their own countries:
"Honduran peasants had no hope of access to their nation’s good soil".
Due to the fact that the U.S. dominated much of the wealth and labor in Honduras, this caused sentiments of resentment, isolation, and anxiety in the Honduran workers made mos of the low class, as much of the native population had to deal with the reality of their economic situation. Many natives suffered when their private lands and properties were sold. Furthermore, the United States is one of the main reasons that led to a huge migration of Hondurans to the United States. Moreover, leading to United State's most debated issues in the past decade: "illegal immigration". This era ended during the 1950's, after these Honduran workes made the "1954's strike" that ended with better conditions for the workers, freedom of expression, and better salary.
Many Honduran-Americans are sons and grandsons of farm laborers who first established themselves in the largest U.S. cities, in which they had support networks from the Honduran-American communities. In the late 1980s and 1990s, most Honduran Americans lived in New Orleans (50,000), New York City (33,000), Los Angeles (24,000), and Miami (18,000). In 2000, Hondurans grew to be the third largest immigrant group from Central America.
Contributions to American society
Many Honduran Americans haved contributed to the world of art, film, and television, such as Carlos Mencia or America Ferrera, and in fashion, providing Honduran cultural features in their designs. Many young Honduran-Americans study in art institutes various artistic disciplines.
They are two slopes of Honduran music, La Punta, of Afro-Caribbean origin, more originally from the Garifuna population, and marimba music, more connected to the mestizo-criollo identity of the country, however Honduras has its versions of other Latin genres such as salsa. Other Hondurans contributed to rock music, due the boom of rock in Honduras during the 80's and 90's.
Honduran-Americans have actively participated in U.S. military service since World War II. Some of them haved participated in North Africa allied operations, the Pacific War, and the occupation of Japan. A well-known story is the one of the Honduran U.S soldier Luis Alemán Gomez that was part of the Allied occupation forces in Japan. A total of 13.7 percent of native (U.S.) Honduran-American males older than 16 years are in the military. Additionally, 769 Honduran-American non-citizen males serve in the military.
Usually, Honduran-Americans live in areas with high economic growth and demand for employment in construction, domestic services, and other industries. Many Honduran-Americans suffer discrimination, as other Hispanic groups do especially Afro-Hondurans.
Honduran-American girls tend to spend more years in school than Honduran-Americans boys, in part due to pressure by their families on boys to start working at age 12 or 14. A total of 1,091 Honduran-Americans have a master's degree graduated in U.S Colleges, 862 have other professional degrees, and 151 have a doctoral degree. The majority of these individuals are women.
According to the 2010 United States Census there are 633,401 Hondurans living in the United States. By 2011, the number of Hondurans estimated to reside in the United States by the Census Bureau's American Community Survey was 702,000. In 2014, according to Pew Research, "60% of 573,000 Honduran immigrants in the U.S. are unauthorized".
The most part of the Honduran-American people, a mix of Spaniard and Native people. These people came from different parts of Honduras. Most of them are located in large cities and have a hight variety of social class, however most mestizo migrants are part of the middle and lower class of Honduras. Despite that, most of them finds economic success after migrating to the United states. Also, many Honduran Mestizos have a very diverse ancestry, not only Spanish and indigenous descent.
The indigenous people of Hondurans are perhaps one of the most affected by all, since the time of the Spanish colony, the natives were at a disadvantage, therefore they are the people with the least voice and vote in their country. However, people of Lenca and Maya descent have moved to the United States mostly escaping unequal treatment by the Honduran authorities.
This is one of the minorities of Honduran migrants, mostly made up of Hondurans with European (Spanish, Italian, and German), Arab (Palestinan, Lebanese, Syrian), and Jewish descent. Due the fact that most whites in Hondurans are part of the middle and upper class most of white-Hondurans came legally to the United States. However, many Whites in the rural area of Honduras also suffer the economic inequality of their country and decide to move to the U.S.
Part of the minorities of Hondurans, most Afro Honduran-American belong to the Garifuna ethnic group and the black Caribs of the Bay Islands. Due their location, the north coast of Honduras, most of them are fluently in English, most Afro-Hondurans stand out in the musical and sports field.
- "B03001 HISPANIC OR LATINO ORIGIN BY SPECIFIC ORIGIN - United States - 2018 American Community Survey 1-Year Estimates". U.S. Census Bureau. July 1, 2018. Retrieved November 25, 2019.
- Honduran Americans by William Maxwell, retrieved December 11, 2011
- “President Reagan Orders Troops into Honduras.” History.com, A&E Television Networks, 13 Nov. 2009, www.history.com/this-day-in-history/reagan-orders-troops-into-honduras.
- Blanchard, Sarah; Hamilton, Erin; Rodríguez, Nestor; Yoshioka, Hirotoshi (2011). "Shifting Trends in Central American Migration:A Demographic Examination of Increasing Honduran‐U.S. Immigration and Deportation". The Latin Americanist. 55: 61–84. doi:10.1111/j.1557-203x.2011.01128.x.
- Great, Honduras Is (2015-05-09). "Honduras participó activamente en la Segunda Guerra Mundial, historias que ni se imagina..." Honduras is Great (in Spanish). Retrieved 2020-11-03.
- Ennis, Sharon H.; Rios-Vargas, Merarys; Albert, Nora G. (May 2011). "The Hispanic Population: 2010" (PDF). United States Census Bureau. United States Department of Commerce. Retrieved 14 August 2014.
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More than 60% of the 573,000 Honduran-born immigrants in the U.S. are unauthorized, a higher share than those from Guatemala, El Salvador and Mexico, where most other apprehended minors are from, according to an analysis by Pew Research’s senior demographer Jeffrey Passel.
- Benjamin for U.S. Senate Website, Family Background section.
- "Honduran American actress America Ferrera Archived 2007-03-11 at the Wayback Machine"
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- "Jordy Zak el modelo que le apuesta a la música y lanza su primer sencillo". wradio.com.co. 17 July 2019. Retrieved 19 July 2019.
- Maxwell, William. "Honduran Americans." Gale Encyclopedia of Multicultural America, edited by Thomas Riggs, (3rd ed., vol. 2, Gale, 2014), pp. 345-355. online