The United States immigration and emigration is directly linked with the railroads construction history of the 19th century. The construction of the railroads that facilitated western expansion Immigrants were not only integral to part of the expansion, but they also used the railroad to migrate west and form new immigrant States in the territory. In the early 19 century, United States expanded westward, across the Mississippi River and later to the Pacific Ocean. These western lands, either was purchased, won in battles, or seized outright from Indian tribes and other nations.
In the late 19th century, millions of people immigrated to America to escape the hardships in their countries. They adapted to these changes by making the best of a difficult situation. Although they escaped famine and unemployment, the immigrants faced many challenges upon their arrival, including racism, poverty, and health issues.
Dating from the early 1900’s, till this day, people are still risking their lives to pursue the “American Dream”,in the pursuit of happiness and wealth. There are some obvious differences, but one underlying reason. They all come from a different country. According to Boustan, Platt, About 30 million immigrants arrived in the United States during this time. By 1910, 22 percent of the U.S. labor force was foreign born. It is much harder making it across the border legally. The greatest similarity of the 1900’s immigrants and today is that they both come for economic improvement.
Economically, they filled a significant need for cheap labor in booming American industries. The large numbers of immigrants helped keep labor cost down for Big Business and different groups were often put against each other in competition for the cheapest workers. Politically, different immigrant groups became active members of various labor organizations and unions, pushing to change pro-business laws and establish regulations governing working conditions and wages. And socially, American culture as it is known now was formed by this influx of immigrants. People from all over the planet brought with them not only their labor but also their cultures, helping to contribute to the mosaic that is the American way of life. These immigrants, as shown by the prejudice and discrimination directed towards them, were not always welcome. In economic hard times, immigrants were blamed for job shortages and family hardships, used as scapegoats for larger problems. Nativist movements were directed against the Chinese, Japanese, Italians, and others, especially during the 1880s and 90s. As evidenced by the Chinese Exclusion Act and later legislation that limited immigration from Japan and other regions, this anti-immigrant sentiment went as high up as the nation's capital. This history was simply a repeat of the nativism and hatred directed against the Irish and Germans of the 1840s and 1850s and is similar to that experienced in America today by immigrants from Mexico and Latin America. In the area of immigration, history repeats
Joseph Healey’s “From Immigrants to White Ethnics” is a generalized comparison between the varying groups of individuals that accompanied the colossal waves of immigration to the United States from Europe in the nineteenth century. Immigration to this country resulted from a number of reason such as religious persecution, individuals seeking to find employment after industrialization in their home countries limited their livelihood, and political oppositions to name a few. On arrival the immigrants knew immediately they were of the subordinate group and faced “discrimination and prejudice” (Healey, 2012, p. 54), although some more so than others. Among the first immigrants to arrive in the United States were Northern and Western European citizens. Unlike the immigrants from Ireland and Southern and Eastern Europe that chose the United States for their new homeland these individuals were probably the most accepted by the majority, even if considered just nominally superior to the others. Included in this group were the “English, Germans, Norwegians, Swedes, Welsh, French, Dutch and Danes” (Healey, 2012, p. 56). This acceptance was due in part to the similarities that the dominate group held as ideals such as their religion, along with cultural values and characteristics. If the Northern and Western Europeans found acceptance difficult, individuals from Ireland and the Europeans from the south and east had an even more traumatic experience. Whereas the more accepted group had
Immigrants have been seeking salvation or just new opportunities in America for hundreds of years. Even Americans originally started off as immigrants. They came to settle in this New World to seek opportunities. These types of immigrants were white, strong, leaders and felt they were superior. In the mid nineteenth century, the “new” immigrants were also welcomed. According to President Grant, these “new” immigrants were the weak, broken, and crippled people who had nowhere else to go. Grant thought these “new” immigrants would ruin the tone of the American life into a more vulgarized tone now that these immigrants are filling up the jails and asylums (Document 4). They mostly came from
Between 1870 and the 1990s, over 11 million immigrants came to America in search of a better a life, coming from Southern and Eastern Europe such as Germany, France, Ireland, and immigrants from China as well. People came to America seeking sanctuary from their home land that did not allow them to be free, such as the Jewish people of Russia, who came to America because the Russian government was anti-Semitic. Jewish people were not allowed to have much property or security in Russia, simply because of their religion. In addition, the draft in Russia would take people away and force them to fight for 25 years, in wars that were pointless due to outdated weapons as well as the brutal discipline they were treated with when drafted. America was a place that allowed freedom of religion, something that was not common and many other countries, making America the ideal place to move and settle down, allowing immigrants to express their religion freely, without the consequences they faced back home. Immigrants also came to America in search of jobs that were scarce in Europe. Many small farmers were put out of jobs in Europe due to large scale mechanized
Immigration has changed a lot throughout the years in American history, not only in laws about immigration, but about places where immigrants came from, and the different races that immigrated. These factors have changed throughout history by shaping the social and economic aspects of the United States. Immigration has changed for the better and for the worse. It has gone to as far as making camps for Japanese Americans and deporting them and taking their belongings, to as low as giving immigrants papers and letting them stay.
As the country became established, immigration was encouraged and even advertised. There were few restrictions on who can enter and where they could live. Some states were in charge of their own borders and had some policies in place. It wasn’t until the late 1700s that some began to look at what the image of America should be. This was the basis of many early
In the United States, the cliché of a nation of immigrants is often invoked. Indeed, very few Americans can trace their ancestry to what is now the United States, and the origins of its immigrants have changed many times in American history. Despite the identity of an immigrant nation, changes in the origins of immigrants have often been met with resistance. What began with white, western European settlers fleeing religious persecution morphed into a multicultural nation as immigrants from countries across the globe came to the U.S. in increasing numbers. Like the colonial immigrants before them, these new immigrants sailed to the Americas to gain freedom, flee poverty and
In the late 1800s and early 1900s, a new wave of immigration hit the United States. These new immigrants typically came from different cultural backgrounds than the “original” immigrants to the United States (the English, Dutch, French, etc). American nativist groups vehemently opposed free, unrestricted immigration because they viewed new immigrants as an inferior race, a threat to American culture, and the root of most of society’s problems. New immigrants were viewed as inferior because the majority of them hailed from non-anglo-saxon countries, and many were of a different denomination or different religion altogether. Nativists also viewed these new immigrants as a threat to American culture because of their lack of English-speaking skills and different cultural practices brought from their homelands. Another
Ever since the United States was founded, immigrants have been arriving on its soil. The first white inhabitants of the U.S. were immigrants from Europe. They came for many reasons, such as religion and opportunity. As the country grew and became more prosperous, it became more enticing to foreigners looking for opportunity. This continued into the 20th century and finally during the 1920’s, the United States began to restrict immigrants from coming to their country, mostly for cultural and economic reasons. Even the immigrants that were allowed in during the 20’s faced many hardships such as religious persecution, racism, and xenia phobia. One of the major groups of immigrants during that
Many immigrants came to America seeking freedom, jobs, and land while others were running from famine and war. While immigrants ran from the problems of their native land, they were running into new problems in America. Americans feared the immigrants would take their jobs or have the right to vote. This fear caused discrimination against the immigrants due to their diverse backgrounds from Germany, Ireland, and China. Immigrants that came to America faced the hardship of discrimination because they did not only stand out with their culture but also because Americans didn’t necessarily want them in America.
The struggles faced by the Puritans and the struggles faced by modern day immigrants are similar in the sense that many immigrants today are fleeing their country to be able to practice their religion freely, or to escape oppressive governments, just as the Puritans did. However, their hardships differ in that many modern day immigrants have come to America and still face discrimination for their
Unless you are a full-blooded Native American, you come from a family of immigrants. However, those who arrived pre-reconstruction were not confronted with the issues of the ones arriving after. Our domestic policy did not have room for “different” people who can change us. “New Immigrants,” arriving in the late 1800s and early 1900s faced many judgments due to their different beliefs, suffrage, and diverse cultures.