Ricardo Alvarado arrived in California in 1928 as a 14-year-old in the first wave of Filipino immigrants. Working as a janitor and houseboy, he enlisted in the U.S. Army First Filipino Infantry Regiment in 1942. After serving in combat in the South Pacific during World War II as a medic, he became a civilian cook at San Francisco’s Letterman Army Hospital.
For 20 years he studied the city and nearby rural areas in his free time with his view camera in hand, recording Filipino community life at dances, banquets, baptisms, funerals, and other gatherings. In 1959, Alvarado ended his work in photography and returned to the Philippines to marry Norberta Magallanes. They had two children, Janet and Joseph Alvarado, who currently live in San Francisco.
When he died in 1976, Ricardo Ocreto Alvarado left an archive of nearly 3,000 rare photographs, a vital portrait of early Filipino Americans.
This is Us…
Past and Future Exhibits
Through My Father’s Eyes
This exhibit was first shown in 1998 at the San Francisco Public Library, Jewett Gallery, at 100 Larkin Street in San Francisco. Currently, the West Sacramento Historical Society, in conjunction with Exhibit Envoy, will present the exhibit at the City of West Sacramento’s Community Center, at 1075 West Capitol Avenue, West Sacramento, California from Monday, Oct. 17, through Friday, Nov. 25, 2022.
This show opened on September 17, 2014 at the San Francisco Main Public Library at 100 Larkin Street in San Francisco, History Center, Skylight Gallery 6th floor, Sept. 20 – Dec. 7, 2014
THEAlvaradoArchiveX seeks to inspire the next generations to unlock their own her/history and family narrative.
Portraits of Bayview: Cultural Intersections
“Portraits of Bayview: Cultural Intersections” featuring the photographs of Filipino photographer Ricardo Ocreto Alvarado.