Sailing to a New Life in America

Topics: Homestead Act, World War II, Germany Pages: 2 (657 words) Published: November 1, 2005
Immigrants have moved to America for hundreds of years to find a better lifestyle and more opportunities for economic growth. America was known as the "Land of the Free," with open land, and freedom for all. Immigrants have traveled from all over the world to live in America despite of the cost and danger of travel; for instance, physical pain, or even diseases. America has become known as a "melting pot," with all of the different races and ethnic groups combined into one. But many immigrants left their families and loved ones behind to come to America to live in a new, safer environment.

In the early 1600's, many immigrants, primarily from England, Western Europe, and Spain, arrived for land and freedom, but as the centuries passed, many immigrants from all over the world arrived for safety and opportunity. For an example, my grandmother, Oma, was born in Waldorf, Germany in 1927. This small village is just north of the Black Forest on the northeast side. When Oma was just a young girl, her biological mother moved to America, leaving Oma with her father and her Auntie Claira. In 1933, Hitler became Chancellor of Germany, and in 1939, World War II was declared. Although Oma's father was German, he was placed in a concentration camp in 1940, for speaking out in public. Only a year later, Oma was informed that her father had died of "natural causes", but he was most likely killed. Safety at this time was becoming harder and harder to find. 1942, while the U.S. army was attacking Germany from the west, the Soviets were coming from the east. The Soviets were destroying everything in sight, and would bomb multiple cities at a time. The house Oma was raised in was burnt to the ground, along with all of their possessions. They had nothing; no clothes, food, shelter, etc. As they wondered the streets the soldiers would harass Oma, and other young innocent women. Auntie Claira, at this time realized Germany was no longer a safe place to live,...
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