Provided by Prince William County
Jan. 13 is Korean American Day. It marks the day in 1903 when just over 100 Korean immigrants first arrived in the United States and settled in Hawaii. Over the next two years, roughly 7,500 more Korean immigrants arrived in the country.
Those Koreans served the U.S. during World Wars I and II and the Korean War. During that time, more Koreans left their homeland to immigrate to the United States – some as wives of American service members and others as adopted children.
Notable Korean Americans include Sammy Lee, a two-time gold medalist in Olympic diving. Wendy Gramm served as chair to the U.S. commodity Futures Trading commission under President Ronald Reagan. Korean American Architect David Hyun revitalized Little Tokyo in Los Angeles, and Hines Ward Jr. played football for the Pittsburgh Steelers. Judge Herbert Y.C. Choi was the first Asian American appointed the U.S. Federal Court. In 1992 Jay Kim was the first Korean American to be elected to the United States House of Representatives, representing California. Sang Hyun Lee served as the first Asian American tenured professor at Princeton Theological Seminary.
Korean culture brought food to the United States including bibimbap, bulgogi and kimchi. K-Pop tunes have made their way into popular culture as well.
In 2005, President George W. Bush established Jan. 13 as Korean American Day to recognize the contributions Korean Americans have made to society in the United States, according to nationaltoday.com/korean-american-day/.