Americans Melting Pot ELlis island

Today we will be discussing the Great American Melting Pot and how Ellis Island played a critical role in establishing the "Melting pot"

"The melting pot is a metaphor for a heterogeneous society becoming more homogeneous, the different elements "melting together" into a harmonious whole with a common culture or vice versa, for a homogeneous society becoming more heterogeneous through the influx of foreign elements with different cultural backgrounds"https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Melting_pot

In contrast the Great American Melting pot can be tied uto Ellis Island because, in 1892 when Ellis island open it became a federal immigration station, a purpose it served for more than 60 years (it closed in 1954). Millions of newly arrived immigrants passed through the station during that time–in fact, it has been estimated that close to 40 percent of all current U.S. citizens can trace at least one of their ancestors to Ellis Island. http://www.history.com/topics/ellis-island

After an arduous sea voyage, many passengers described their first glimpse of New Jersey, while third-class or steerage passengers lugged their possessions onto barges that would take them to Ellis Island. Immigrants were tagged with information from the ship’s registry and passed through long lines for medical and legal inspections to determine if they were fit for entry into the United States. From 1900 to 1914–the peak years of Ellis Island’s operation–some 5,000 to 10,000 people passed through the immigration station every day. Approximately 80 percent successfully passed through in a matter of hours, but others could be detained for days or weeks. Many immigrants remained in New York, while others traveled by barge to railroad stations in Hoboken or Jersey City, New Jersey, on their way to destinations across the country. http://www.history.com/topics/ellis-island

The First Arrival: On January 1, 1892–her 15th birthday–Annie Moore from County Cork, Ireland, became the first person admitted to the new immigration station on Ellis Island. On that opening day, she received a greeting from officials and a $10.00 gold piece. Annie traveled to New York with her two younger brothers on steerage aboard the S.S. Nevada, which left Queenstown (now Cobh) on December 20, 1891 and arrived in New York on the evening of December 31. After being processed, the children were reunited with their parents, who were already living in New York.http://www.history.com/topics/ellis-island

Beware the Buttonhook Men: Doctors checked those passing through Ellis Island for more than 60 diseases and disabilities that might disqualify them from entry into the United States. Those suspected of being afflicted with a having a disease or disability were marked with chalk and detained for closer examination. All immigrants were checked closely for trachoma, a contagious eye condition that caused more detainments and deportations than any other ailment. To check for trachoma, the examiner used a buttonhook to turn each immigrant’s eyelids inside out, a procedure remembered by many Ellis Island arrivals as particularly painful and terrifying .http://www.history.com/topics/ellis-island

When Ellis Island opened, a great change was taking place in immigration to the United States. As arrivals from northern and western Europe–Germany, Ireland, Britain and the Scandinavian countries–slowed, more and more immigrants poured in from southern and eastern Europe. Among this new generation were Jews escaping from political and economic oppression in czarist Russia and eastern Europe (some 484,000 arrived in 1910 alone) and Italians escaping poverty in their country. There were also Poles, Hungarians, Czechs, Serbs, Slovaks and Greeks, along with non-Europeans from Syria, Turkey and Armenia. The reasons they left their homes in the Old World included war, drought, famine and religious persecution, and all had hopes for greater opportunity in the New World. .http://www.history.com/topics/ellis-island

Ellis Island tells the story of the journey of millions of men, women and children from around the world who sought a new future on these shores.https://www.saveellisisland.org/ellis-island-facts/

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