Essay about The Plight of Immigrants to Boston

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The Plight of Immigrants to Boston

Since its conception in the early 1600's, Boston, the so-called 'City on a Hill,' has opened its doors to all people of all ethnic and religious background. At times there were many who fought to prevent the immigrants, while other people, at the same time, helped those who made it to the Americas, more specifically, Boston to make a new life for themselves. The immigrants from Ireland were not unfamiliar with this trend in American history. More often than not, the Irish immigrants were met with adversity from the 'native' Bostonians. Founded by the Puritans in the late 1600's, Boston and its people were not completely open to immigrants, at first, which seemed odd, considering they were once …show more content…

Unfortunately, the Irish-Catholic immigrants were not looked very-highly upon at first. The Puritan citizens of Boston often looked those that actually expressed their religious, "papist" beliefs in public with suspicion and fear. These Puritans "continued to regard Catholicism as both a subversive political menace as well as a fearsome religious heresy." This, considering the fact that those same Puritans and Protestants came to the Colonies in search of religious freedom, was quite bold on their parts. For example, many Roman Catholics were excluded from liberties and rights that other citizens had. They were "often placed under unusually severe limitations on their everyday life especially on those actions where religious believes played and important role." Following the Revolutionary War, some tolerance for Catholics was present -- "there was a sufficient atmosphere of forbearance in Boston to accommodate the handful of Roman Catholics who had now begun to practice heir religion openly." This new found tolerance could not have come at better time. After the Revolutionary War, larger numbers of Irish immigrants were joining their friends and families in America. From 1825 to 1830, approximately 125,000 people emigrated from Ireland to the Americas, an average of 20,000 a year. Over 30,000 of them came to Boston and by 1830, the Irish Catholic population of Boston had grown to 8,000. Unfortunately, this

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