Essay about Italian Immigration

1803 Words Oct 19th, 2003 8 Pages
After experiencing hardships like poverty, a series of natural disasters, civil war and oppression from Northern Italy the Southern Italians started coming to America in flocks between 1876 and 1976. The most concentrated migrations of Italians happened between 1880 and 1920. Italians came to America not to escape these hardships, but to work and send money home to Italy in order to get their families out of poverty. Seventy percent of Italian immigrants were men and less than ten percent of them worked in agriculture, a sign that their stay in America was a temporary one. While here they worked in factories, construction and opened businesses. Coming to America, Italians were faced with racism, poverty, discrimination, corrupt …show more content…
Like seventy-five percent of Italian men who would come to the United States of America, Angelo left his fiancé and family behind thinking that he would find limitless opportunities and return home after a few short years. He showed up in 1900 in Boston, Massachusetts with some Italian coins equal to about $2.50, some food, two changes of clothes and an optimistic attitude. The average Southern-Italian came to America with about $8.67 in their pocket. This was a big difference compared to the $17.10 that the average Irish person brought or the $23.53 that the average Northern-Italian brought.
Most Italians worked in construction or in factories and the unskilled laborers worked on the railways and other tedious jobs that no one else would do such as shoe shinning, rag picking and sewer cleaning. Italians typically took low paying jobs and worked their way up the ladder. It was that willingness to do these jobs for less that other white Americans resented because they said that the Italians were stealing jobs from them. Angelo took a job at a shoe factory. Even though he was not illiterate, he was at a disadvantage because he had not learned English before arriving in America. Angelo lived at first with some roommates he had met on the boat ride over to the "New Country" in a two room Apartment in Malden, Massachusetts. They saved money to send home by carrying on their
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