Larry Itliong correspondence


Larry Itliong correspondence


Correspondence between Larry Itliong and Cary
McWilliams. The letter explains Filipino relations in the United States and Carlos Bulosan.


Welga! Filipino American Labor Archives


circa 1970s


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Document Text

Mr Cary McWilliams

Dear Mr McWilliams,

Sorry I was not able to respond to your request as quickly as possible, concerning my friendship and impressions with Carlos Bulosan. For one thing I was really not that close to Carlos. Oh we have had some long conversations about our situation particularly our economic opportunity
or the lack of it, and how we are looked down by everyone including the Japanese and Chinese people. But Carlos sure was a thinker. He is always away from most everybody writing something, but not too faraway that if
he wants to talk with us he does not go very far. He uses us to inspire his thinking.

But I know two of his real close friends and I am sure you know of them yourself. One of them is Stanley Garibay, who came to see me a couple of days ago and I showed him your letter and asked him to write to you concerning his association with Carlos. The other fellow Chris Mensalves, who has been associatied with Carlos most of his life here in America and residing in Seattle Washington. He could be reached [ADDRESS REDACTED]

Carlos Bulosan, as I know of him is quite a fellow always by himself and doing a lot of writing. I was then in my early teens when I met him and because of his aloofness and quiet nature he does not attract people close to him. I became what I am today more because of Ernesto Mangaoang, as an outspoken leader of Filipino Rights than by knowing Carlos Bulosan. Ernie Mangaoang was really my inspiration who was not afraid to express himself and expound Filipino rights in the early twenties. I do know that Carlos was interested in putting his thinking
and ideas in books. Since Filipinos came to America either to work and make money and very few really came to study and made it, therefore I did consider Carlos an exception since he was always with a book and a
pencil and paper. Too bad we didn’t have many Carlos Bulosans who did any kind of writing concerning the work and aspirations of Filipinos in America.

Since we as Filipinos in America were not given due respect as human beings therefore we develop a very early attitude of a devil may care. Why not, since we were just being used and exploited by everyone left and right. Even after World War Two, when Filipinos not only showed their Salt and Loyalty to the Good USA, we are still only vaguely noticed if ever as people and human. And if anyone is keenly aware of these it was Carlos Bulosan.

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Date Added
May 27, 2015
Patty Enrado collection
Item Type
“Larry Itliong correspondence,” Welga Archive - Bulosan Center for Filipino Studies, accessed September 17, 2021,