The Dream of America: Immigration 1870-1920 (Defining Moments)
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Synopsis "Provides a detailed account of U. Buy New Learn more about this copy. About AbeBooks. Customers who bought this item also bought. Stock Image. Published by Omnigraphics, United States New Hardcover Quantity Available: 1. Seller Rating:. Published by Omnigraphics, Inc. New Quantity Available: 2. New Quantity Available: 1. We feel lucky that they are all growing up in the most wonderful country in the world. I will always remember where I came from but it is who I am now that matters. If Pier 21 could talk it could tell many stories. I am indeed glad that now that the docks are often lined with cruise boats rather than immigrant ships.
Our country recognizes the important role in history that it played over many decades. Certainly Pier 21 is an important marker in my life's journey. I came to Canada from Brazil when I was 5 years old. I remember I had to leave all my xmas gifts and friends behind in Rio. It was very hard. Also, we arrived in winter and found it hard to breath the cold air.
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I had to teach myself how to inhale short breaths to be able to take in the cold! Heidi Hart on board the S. Beaverbrae, March It was the Canadian Red Cross that came to our aid when our house in London was bomb damaged during the war. I was 11 years of age and vividly remember the boxes of clothing and food they delivered to our door. I promised myself that I would go to Canada one day. I felt wonderful to be in a new country. At that time we had 3 choices for immigration: Australia, South Africa and Canada. We decided on Canada because it was closer and a return trip to Germany would have been less expensive.
It also seemed more interesting than the other two countries. Your anthem dearest Canada we sing with pride and thanks From the heart of all the immigrants who landed on your banks. Our family came aboard the ship they call the Volendam In nineteen hundred fifty one, a Canadian to become. With all the hardships we went trough, my parents never complained. Every year got better and better. Canada is a great country. We all love our new homeland, its people and open spaces. Evacuee children on board the S. Duchess of Bedford, I look back on how Canada has changed me and my values.
I think the hardest part of emigrating was changing the way I believed things should be done. I was brought up to understand that the British knew how to do things correctly. Queen Frederica, March Image courtesy of the Brana family. Red Cross nurses during the Second World War. Damiani family with Officers on board the S. I'm proud of my new country Canada, because of the culture, diversity positive people; it feels like home away from home. Now that I think about it, I feel very happy and grateful to live in Canada.
Canada feels like home. Doppenberg family on board the S. Ryndam, The light of the bright moon illuminated the cemetery walls. At this point my eyes were dimmed with tears. I kissed my son on the forehead and I whispered. At first the soft white sliced bread tasted like cake to me. Image courtesy of the Barnett Family. It was very different coming here in the way you got treated. I remember just being totally shocked by how welcoming and open people were. Mom and Dad worked had to improve the family way of life.
I felt like a small grain of sand washed up on the shores, with many thousands of others. Many had stories, similar to mine, coming for refuge and with high hopes, to Canada. Fortunately, my story has a happy ending. I fell as though some greater power must have been leading my unpredictable steps to the right places through the years. I am grateful to Canada for giving me the life I now enjoy. I am so happy to live in Canada, in Halifax, Thank you! We are grateful and thankful that we immigrated to Canada.
If we had stayed in post-war Europe, none of us would have had the opportunities that Canada offered. I never learned which of the original 13 colonies they were baptized by. Wartime bread was grey and heavy and tasted like cardboard. Everything here was delicious. Refugees from the S. Origins Unknown. It is okay to cry. Missing home is normal.
Matt Evans Halifax, NS. While we sailed away from Ireland I stood at the stern of the ship and watched Ireland disappear over the horizon, a sad moment. During the crossing of the North Atlantic, I was standing at the rail of the ship with an old English fellow, who was a farmer from Saskatchewan returning home to Canada he had emigrated many years before we were looking out over the water and that's all you could see in any direction.
I said to him "boy that's a lot of water" and he said "yeah and that's only the top. When we passed customs and boarded the train they gave us two loafs of bread. Not knowing what it was I used it to play accordion as it was soft and flexible.. We were lead to other tables and received our fist nourishment on Canadian soil. Many were still seasick and the texture of the nourishment did not help. Compared to European wieners, the hot dogs were tasteless and the mustard too sweet.
Along with the hot dog came a slice of white, square pieces of tasteless sponge.
All of us, used to European rye bread or white rolls, did not recognize it as a standard Canadian bread. Schultz family on board the S. Fairsea, 4 Dec My parents, brother and I would like to thank the Canadian government and its people for allowing us to be part of them, and we are. May God Bless this beautiful land called Canada. In , over sixty years ago, Canadian representatives of the Immigration and Employment Department came to Malta to select young tradesmen to immigrate to Canada.
I, Lewis Borg, was one of the select to immigrate. Our first house in Canada was a farmhouse 2 km outside of Bowmanville. The bread was soft and spongy and packed in wax paper, the butter was all salty, there was only soft process cheese, instead of smoked and cured hard sausage they only had what they called baloney and peanut butter, and many other novelties that we didn't even understand. Welcome to Canada.. My father fled Romania in while my mother was pregnant with me.
He was captured in Yugoslavia and spent time in prison there before being accepted as a refugee in Canada. It was two years before my mother, older sister and I were all able to join him. My family chose Calgary because they had Romanian friends in the city. The adjustment was difficult for them having to leave behind their friends, family, good jobs and the sense of security that comes from being surrounded by people who understood their native language and shared a culture with them.
I am in awe of their bravery, positivity and resilience. My sister and I have both gone to school, gotten married and made lives for ourselves here in Canada. I am so grateful for the sacrifices my parents made to bring us here! One of my funniest memories," Bette continued, "was the day we landed at Halifax. We were so eager to get off the boat but they told us that the train had already left. When we finally departed, every time the train stopped we all jumped off and mailed letters to our husbands to let them know we were coming.
We thought the letter would arrive the next day same as in Britain! We had no idea. I would bring my husband and a positive attitude. Ukrainian family on board the R. Aquitania, December I would bring my family because they mean a lot to me. As soon as we landed at Toronto airport, that was amazing the peace and the comfort, I had in my heart, in my body, I cannot explain, I was just standing outside the airport and I was just shivering, like oh my God, so finally we are in Canada.
We had our first corn flakes and potatoes with the skin on my mother always peeled the potatoes. Bacon and eggs, Canadian style, went down very well. My mother insisted we eat all the food, to show our appreciation. Thank-You Canada for making this Beautiful country my Home for me and my beautiful family. And Thank You for making it all possible. Ascania, December Unidentified evacuee children on board the S. Bayano, August Passengers on board the S. Conte Biancamano, August Red Cross, From the seven people that arrived on Pier 21 on May 15th, , we are now 57 proud Canadians.
Thank You Canada!!!
I am a black Jamaican — Canadian. An immigration officer in Toronto told me to seek a job as a domestic, as I would never get one as a teacher. I laughed at him. I did work happily in my profession for 32 years. I have 3 medals for community contributions, plus numerous awards.
Thanks, Canada. I arrived in I arrived in Canada on July 1st, on Canada Day and it was very, very meaningful. In South America, we believe in signs and for me was a good sign that, that everything was going to be okay. We were grateful for the roof over our heads and no one complained….
Children bound for Fairbridge Farm School, That evening, my Dad had bought some "Canadian sliced white bread", which was something new for us, which he made extra special by buttering the bread and sprinkling sugar on top Doppenberg family on board the M. Zoratti family on board the S. Homeland, June I remember the first time I had Canadian bread. I rolled it up and tried to bounce it. Bring your open spirit, love of life and tolerance of all peoples. Share your culture, history and story to enrich Canadian fabric and society. To Canada, we are also grateful, for allowing us the opportunity to become part of this great nation; for accepting us for what we were and for allowing us to become what we are, proud Canadians.
Ascania, Baltic refugees on board the Parnu. We were the only ones on the ship not ill. When the server came around with this bread, we didn't know what to think. We surely thought we would not be able to swallow it since we couldn't crunch it in our teeth. We thought it may get stuck in our throat! The Netherlands is our country of birth and always will be our homeland but now we are Canadian.
We will be forever grateful to the staff and all who were, and are now, associated with Pier It takes a lot of humility. I invite you to find refuge in love, and share who you are. We have had our share of sorrows, but also lots of joy. Life has been wonderful here in this marvelous country. I am thankful and grateful that I have had the opportunity to live here. Canada, in my opinion, the greatest country and the most generous, fine people to be found.
Aileen Ratz Scrapbook. My mother decided that our first meal would simply be wieners and mashed potatoes, since, indeed, we had problems locating ingredients for a fancier meal. The wieners seemed rather short, and when we got home and boiled them, we also discovered that they were neither as tasty nor as firm as Danish wieners.
However, our greatest disappointment was with the mustard, which looked exactly like European mustard, but which was probably the worst brand of mustard that we had ever encountered. As we were later to discover, that was our first introduction to peanut butter. In we bought our first house in West Vancouver. Before boarding the train, my mother went to a nearby convenience store to purchase some food.
Border Battles: The U.S. Immigration Debates
I immigrated with my family my dad, mom, and two brothers , we all were thrilled and amazed by the green beautiful nature of Halifax upon the landing of the plane. It was the best day of our lives, our reasons for immigrating were many but mostly, a home! We were looking for a place to settle in a safe, friendly and peaceful place to call home, I'm glad that place was Canada for us.
Fortunately my story has a happy ending. We loved the taste of Canadian white bread, sliced at that! It tasted like cake to us and it was the first of many pleasant surprises My father had left everything and everybody that he knew to give his family an opportunity at a better life. It worked. The sights and sounds of Pier 21 will remain with me forever. I felt closer to my parents and grandmother than ever before because I was able to share in this memorable experience.
This was truly a great day for Canada and for me. Thanks Pier 21! I would bring my family album, learn more about my country so I can share with my new Canadian Family. My mother came from Czechslovakia. They were running from Hitler because they were gypsies. I love Canada. Adjusting to life in Canada was a bit challenging in the first couple of months but I soon started meeting people and learning about the culture, going to university and being part of the community,. After 12 days of just being sea sick, losing weight on my already frail frame, we pulled into Halifax, January The army cadet band greeted us.
We were then ushered into the immigration building to be examined by doctors. We watched TV and ate corn flakes for the first time without milk as one would eat potato chips. My parents were very enthusiastic, full of life, and had plans for the future. Immigration to North America began with Spanish settlers in the 16th century, and French and English settlers in the 17th century. In the century before the American revolution, there was a major wave of free and indentured labor from England and other parts of Europe as well as large scale importation of slaves from Africa and the Caribbean.
Christmas in 19th Century America
Although some level of immigration has been continuous throughout American history, there have been two epochal periods: the to Age of Mass Migration, primarily from Southern and Eastern Europe, and the Post Wave of Immigration, primarily from Latin America and Asia Min , Portes and Rumbaut Each of these eras added more than 25 million immigrants, and the current wave is far from finished. During some of the peak years of immigration in the early s, about one million immigrants arrived annually, which was more than one percent of the total U. In the early 21st century, there have been a few years with more than one million legal immigrants, but with a total U.
The first impact of immigration is demographic. The 70 million immigrants who have arrived since the founding of the republic formal records have only been kept since are responsible for the majority of the contemporary American population Gibson The one segment of the American population with the longest record of historical settlement is African Americans.
Almost all African Americans are the descendants of 17th- or 18th-century arrivals Edmonston and Passell Early in the 20th century when immigration from Southern and Eastern Europe was at its peak, many old stock Americans sought to preserve the traditional image of the country as primarily composed of descendants from Northwest Europe, especially of English Protestant stock Baltzell There are no official figures on the numbers of American Indians prior to the late 19th century, but they were the dominant population of the 18th century in most of the territories that eventually became the United States.
Estimates of the non-English-origin population in range from 20 to 40 percent Akenson ; McDonald and McDonald ; Purvis Throughout the 19th century, Irish and German Americans, especially Catholics, were not considered to be fully American in terms of culture or status by old stock Americans. In May , there were three days of rioting in Kensington, an Irish suburb of Philadelphia, which culminated in the burning of two Catholic churches and other property Archdeacon The rising tide of nativism—the fear of foreigners—had deep roots in anti-Catholicism and a fear of foreign radicals.
These beliefs and the link to immigration restriction had widespread support among many well-educated elites. The Immigration Restriction League, founded by young Harvard-educated Boston Brahmins in , advocated a literacy test to slow the tide of immigration Bernard Cities, where most immigrants settled, were derided and feared as places filled with dangerous people and radical ideas Hawley These sentiments were often formulated by intellectuals, but they resonated with many white Americans who were reared in rather parochial and homogenous rural and small town environments.
While some reformers, such as Jane Addams, went to work to alleviate the many problems of urban slums, others such as Henry Adams, the descendant of two American presidents and a noted man of letters, expressed virulent nativism and anti-Semitism Baltzell The Chinese Exclusion Act of was the first step toward a closed society. From the s to the s, a diverse set of groups, ranging from the old line New England elites to the Progressive Movement in the Midwest and to the Ku Klux Klan led a campaign to halt immigration from undesirable immigrants from Europe Higham ; Jones Chapter 9.
In the early decades of the 20th century the nascent pseudo-science of Eugenics was used to support claims of the inferiority of the new immigrants relative to old stock Americans. Passing the national origins quotas in the early s was intended to exclude everyone from Asia and Africa and to sharply lower the number of arrivals from Southern and Eastern Europe.
The period from to , when a highly restrictive immigration policy was in place, was exceptional in American history.
Western Expansion, the New South, and Industrial America, –
For those who were reared in this era, it might seem that the high levels of immigration experienced during the last three decades of the 20th century are unusual. However, high levels of immigration characterized most of the 18th and 19th centuries as well as the first two decades of the 20th. The impact of the Amendments to the Immigration and Nationality Act, also known as the Hart-Cellar Act, was a surprise to policy makers and many experts. The primary intent of the Act was to repeal the national origin quotas enacted in the s, which were considered discriminatory by the children and grandchildren of Southern and Eastern European immigrants.
The advocates of reform in the s were not pushing for a major new wave of immigration. Their expectation was that there would be a small increase of arrivals from Italy, Greece, and a few other European countries as families that were divided by the immigration restrictions of the s were allowed to be reunited, but that no long-term increase would result Reimers Chapter 3. The new criteria for admission under the Act were family reunification and scarce occupational skills Keely The new preference system allowed highly skilled professionals, primarily doctors, nurses, and engineers from Asian countries, to immigrate and eventually to sponsor their families.
About the same time, and largely independently of the Immigration Act, immigration from Latin America began to rise. Legal and undocumented migration from Mexico surged after a temporary farm worker program known as the Bracero Program was shut down in Massey, Durand, and Malone Beginning in the s, there were several waves of Vietnamese, Cambodian, and Hmong refugees following the collapse of American-supported regimes in Southeast Asia.
Each of these streams of immigration as well as refugee inflows has spawned secondary waves of immigration as family members followed. By , there were over 30 million foreign-born persons in the United States, of whom almost one third arrived in the prior decade. Adding together immigrants and their children the second generation , more than 60 million people—or one in five Americans—have recent roots from other countries U. Bureau of the Census Although the current levels of immigration are not equal—in relative terms—to the Age of Mass Migration in the early 20th century, the absolute numbers of contemporary immigrants far exceed that of any prior time in American history or the experience of any other country.
American history cannot be separated from the history of immigration. Irish immigrants worked as laborers in cities and were the major source of labor in the construction of transportation networks, including canals, railroads, and roads. Some have estimated that the manpower advantage of the Union forces during the Civil War was largely due to immigrants who had settled in the northern states Gallman Immigrants have also played an important role in the transition to an urban industrial economy in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
Immigrant workers have always been over-represented in skilled trades, mining, and as peddlers, merchants, and laborers in urban areas. Immigrants and their children were the majority of workers in the garment sweatshops of New York, the coal fields of Pennsylvania, and the stockyards of Chicago. The cities of America during the age of industrialization were primarily immigrant cities Gibson and Jung The rapidly expanding industrial economy of the North and Midwest drew disproportionately on immigrant labor from to and then on African American workers from the South from to In , about three quarters of the populations of many large cities were composed of immigrants and their children, including New York, Chicago, Boston, Cleveland, San Francisco, Buffalo, Milwaukee, and Detroit Carpenter Immigrants and their children remained the majority of the urban population, especially in the industrial cities of the Northeast and Midwest until the s Carpenter 27; Eldridge and Thomas Immigrants and their children have also played an important role in modern American politics, helping to form the Roosevelt coalition in the s and again in the s with the election of John F.
Although Herbert Hoover defeated Al Smith in , a number of scholars have attributed the shift from the Republican dominance of the government in the s to the New Deal coalition of the s to the increasing share, turnout, and partisanship of the urban ethnic vote following several decades of mass immigration Andersen ; Baltzell ; Clubb and Allen ; Degler ; Lubell Although the age of mass immigration had ended in the s, the children of immigrants formed 20 percent of the potential electorate in U.
Bureau of the Census 8. The political leanings of the second generation can be inferred from research on the relationship between religion and political preferences. In the decades following the World War II era, white Protestants, especially middle class white Protestants outside the South, have been the base of the Republican Party, while Catholic and Jewish voters have been disproportionately Democratic Hamilton chap.
The majority of early 20th-century Southern and Eastern European immigrants were Catholic or Jewish Foner 11; Jones The reform periods of the New Deal of the s and the New Frontier which lead to the Great Society programs of Lyndon Johnson were made possible by the mass migration of the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Immigrants and their descendants were also important in the development of popular American culture and in creating the positive image of immigration in the American mind.
Immigrants and the second generation have played a remarkable role in the American creative arts, including writing, directing, producing, and acting in American films and plays for most of the first half of the 20th century Buhle ; Gabler ; Most ; Phillips ; Winokur The majority of Hollywood film directors who have won two or more Academy Awards Oscars were either immigrants or the children of immigrants Hirschman Table 4. These composers and lyricists who wrote much of the standard American songbook were largely second and third generation Jewish immigrants who were reared in ethnic enclaves, but their music has defined the quintessential American musical culture of the 20th century.
Many Hollywood and Broadway productions have also given us poignant accounts of outsiders who struggle to be understood and accepted. Perhaps it is not so surprising that the Statue of Liberty has become the preeminent national symbol of the United States Kasinitz From our current vantage point, it is clear that popular beliefs and fears about immigrants in the early 20th century were completely mistaken. In the early 20th century, most elites and many social scientists thought that immigrants were overrunning American society.
The arguments used to restrict continued Southern and Eastern European immigration in the 20th century paralleled those made earlier to end Chinese and Japanese immigration in and , respectively.
For three decades, the battle over immigration restriction was waged in the court of public opinion and in Congress. In , the Dillingham Commission a congressionally appointed commission named after Senator William P. Dillingham of Vermont issued a volume report, which assumed the racial inferiority of the new immigrants from Eastern and Southern Europe relative to the old stock immigrants from Northwestern Europe Bernard When the passage of a literacy test in did not have the intended impact of slowing immigration from Southern and Eastern Europe, Congress passed the Quota Act in to limit the number of annual immigrants from each country to three percent of the foreign-born of that nationality in the census Bernard These provisions were not strong enough for some restrictionists, who passed another immigration law in that pushed the quotas back to two percent of each nationality counted in the census, a date before the bulk of the new immigrants had arrived.
Looking backward, we can see that the impacts of the Age of Mass Migration from to were almost entirely opposite to those anticipated by contemporary observers. The Anglo-centric core of the early 20th century has been largely replaced with a more cosmopolitan America that places Catholicism and Judaism on a par with Protestant denominations, and the Statue of Liberty has become the national symbol of a nation of immigrants.
Perhaps the most important legacy of the Age of Mass Migration is that the children of Eastern and Southern European immigrants helped to pave the way for the New Deal of the s, the Great Society of the s, and the Immigration Act that allowed a new wave of immigration from Asia and Latin America to arrive. In his recent novel, The Plot Against America , Philip Roth poses the possibility that Charles Lindberg might have been elected president in and then established a cordial understanding with Nazi Germany.
There was certainly a lot of virulent anti-Semitism in the United States at the time, and the hatred of Franklin Roosevelt by the WASP upper class could have led to elite support for a fascist alternative. Ironically, the closure of the door to immigration after and the Great Migration of African Americans from the rural South to cities in the North and Midwest may have helped the children of Southern and Eastern European immigrants to climb up the socioeconomic ladder in the middle decades of the 20th century Lieberson