Immigration to the United States and New Immigrants

Topics: United States, Immigration to the United States, Immigration Pages: 3 (820 words) Published: March 14, 2006

America was always and still is a nation filled with diverse groups of people, many of whom emigrated from many different countries. There were always people coming into the United States. However, from the 1870s through to the 1920s, a new wave of immigration took place, one that was explosive and history-altering. Immigrants came from all over the world in search of new jobs, lives, and opportunities; some came out of force, due to their poverty-stricken countries. Although they had made the journey, most immigrants had difficulty assimilating or being accepted into American society. These immigrants faced a series of oppression and hardships that were challenging. Racial discrimination and rejection were not uncommon; immigrants encountered social inequalities and injustices. The sudden spurt of immigrants and the opposition of them from nativists consequently caused an extreme suppression imposed by the US government. The 1924 National Origins Acts dramatically cut the number of immigrants allowed into the country. With this in effect, immigration, mostly targeted at Asian and Southern and Eastern Europeans, ended.

Between 1880 and 1920, around 25 million people came to the US. (Nash, 236) The "US became more of a melting plot, with different racial, ethnic, and cultural groups blended together." (Nash, 283) These massive floods of immigrants were coming from Southern and Eastern Europe, whereas prior to 1880, Northern and Western Europeans solely immigrated to the States. These new immigrants constituted about "80 percent of all immigrants who came from countries such as Italy, Greece, Poland, and Russia" and had a huge impact on the American population. (Nash, 236) These immigrants came through Ellis Island, on the coast of New York, and usually lived in tenements. "Free blacks lived on the Lower East Side in the 1850s, Irish in the 1860s, Germans in the 1870s, Chinese in the 1890s, Russia-Polish Jews in the 1900s and Italians around...

Bibliography: Chang, Gordon. "The 100th anniversary of the Chinese Exclusion Act." 1982.
DeHart, David. Lecture.
Diamond, Randy. "Tenement history rebuilt in museum." San Francisco Examiner, 1989.
Nash, Gary B. American Odyssey. New York: Glencoe McGraw-Hill, 1999.
Takaki, Ronald. Strangers From A Different Shore: A History of Asian Americans. Boston: Little Brown and Co., 1989.
Video: "Freedom. A History of U.S." PBS, 2003.
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