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New Immigrants

Ellis Island & Angel Island

The New Immigrants


Before 1865 most immigrants other
than enslaved Africans came from
northern and western Europe.
In the mid-1800s, large groups of
new immigrants came from eastern
and southern Europe
They came from Ireland, Germany,
Italy, Greece, Poland, Hungary and
Russia.
80% of all immigrant population

The New Immigrants


Many people came to the United
States from China and Japan after
the Civil War.
After 1900, immigration from
Mexico increased.
Many immigrants had unfamiliar
languages and religious beliefs and
had difficulty blending into
American society.

Push Factors: Leaving


Troubles Behind
Many people emigrated, or left their
homelands, because of economic hardship.
Italy and Hungary- overcrowding and poverty
Many others fled their homelands because
some countries made unfair laws against
certain ethnic groups, people who share a
common culture or heritage.
Russia and Poland (eastern Europe)- More
than 2.5 million Jews fled such treatment
between 1880 and 1924.

viewed the
United States
Pull Factors: Opportunity
as a place of
jobs, land and
hope.
Some
immigrants
returned
home after a
few years, but
most stayed.

Journey to the United States


The Journey to the
United States was
often difficult.
Immigrants first
traveled to a port city,
at times ports were
hundreds of miles from
home.
Then came the long
ocean voyage- 12 days
from Europe, several
weeks from Asia.

Journey to the United States


Many immigrants
could only afford
the cheapest
ticket.
They traveled in
cramped quarters
on the lower decks
of ships- this
section was known
as steerage.

Entering the United States


Most immigrants
from Europe landed
at New York City.
After 1886, those
who arrived were
greeted by the
Statue of Liberty as
they sailed into New
York Harbor.
The Statue of

Entering the

pass through
government
United
States
reception
centers.
In the East,
immigrants came
through Ellis Island in
New York Harbor.
Most Asian
immigrants sailed to
California. They went
through the
processing center on
Angel Island in San
Francisco Bay.

Entering the United States


Examiners recorded the
immigrants names,
asked them where they
came from, their
occupation and whether
they had relatives in the
United States.
New immigrants were
also given health
exams. Those with
contagious illnesses
could be stopped from
entering the United
States.

The Immigrant Experience


The greatest challenge was finding
work. Sometimes organizations from
their homelands recruited, or tried to
sign up, workers for jobs in the
United States.
They were unskilled and were used
to unload cargo, dig ditches or similar
work.
Most immigrant men in the early
1900s were laborers, working 12 hour

The Immigrant Experience


Most new immigrants came from
rural areas. Yet, were too poor to
buy farmland in the United
States.
Most settled in cities.
With little or no education, they
worked in unskilled jobs.
Ethnic groups often formed their
own communities.