tates which is about German, Irish, Jewish immigrants in the 1800s or early 1900s. Im a Asian so I know about Asian immigration. But I didnt know about Europe immigration very well. So I chose it among many topics. I know that I will find about aspect of immigration important and I will fall into interest of this history.
A continuing high birthrate accounted for most of the increase in population, but by the 1840s the tides of immigration were adding hundreds of thousands more. Before this decade, immigrants had been flowing in at a rate of 60,000 a year ; but suddenly the influx was tripled in the 1840s and then quadrupled in the 1850s. During these two feverish decades, over a million and a half Irish, and nearly as many Germans, swarmed down the gang planks. Why did they come? The immigrants came partly because Europe seemed to be running out of room. The population of the Old World more than doubled in the nineteenth century, and Europe began to generate a seething pool of apparently “Surplus” people. They were displaced and footloose in their homelands before they felt the tug of the American magnet. Indeed at least as many people moved about within Europe as crossed the Atlantic. America benefited from these people churning changes but did not set then all in motion. Nor was the Uni!ted States the sole beneficiary of the process : of the nearly 60 million people who abandoned Europe in the century after 1840, about 25 million went somewhere other than the United States.
Yet America still beckoned most strongly to the struggling masses of Europe, and the majority of migrants headed for the “land of freedom and opportunity”. There was freedom from aristocratic caste and state church; there was abundant opportunity to secure broad acres and better ones condition.
The introduction of transoceanic steam ships also meant that the immigrants could come speedily, in a matter of ten or twelve clays instead of ten or twelve weeks. For a generation, from 1793 to 1815, war raged across Europe. Ruinous as it was on the continent, the fighting brought unprecedented prosperity to the long-suffering landsmen of Ireland. After 1815, war-inflated wheat prices plummeted by half. Hark-pressed landlords resolved to leave vast fields unplanned. Assisted now by a strengthened British constabulary, they vowed to sweep the pesky peasants from the retired acreage. Many of those forced to leave sought work in England; some went to America. Then in 1845 a blight that ravaged the potato crop sounded the final knell for the Irish peasantry.
Irish nearly half of all the immigrants who hooded into the United States between 1820 and 1860 came from Ireland. They arrived penniless and virtually unemployable, and many of them spoke not English but Gaelic of the emigrants, most were young and literate in English, the majority under thirty-five years old. Families typically pooled money to send strong young sons to the New World, where they would earn wages to pay the fares for those who remained behind. These “famine Irish” mostly remained in the port cities of the Northeast, abandoning the farmers life for the squalor and congestion of the urban metropolis. The Irish newcomers were poorly prepared for urban life. They found progress up the economic ladder painfully slow. Their work as obmestic servants or construction laborers was dull and arduous, and mortality rates were astoundingly high. Escape from the potato famine hardly guaranteed a long life to and Irish-American most of the new arrivals toiled as day laborer!
s. A fortunate few owned boarding houses or saloons, where their dispirited countrymen sought solace in the bottle. For Irish-born women, opportunities were still scarcer; they worked mainly as domestic servants.
But it was their Roman Catholicism, more even than their penury or their perceived fondness for alcohol, that earned the Irish the distrust and resentment of their native-born, Protestant American neighbors. The cornerstone of social and religious life for Irish immigrants was the parish. Worries about safeguarding their childrens faith inspired the construction of parish schools, financed by the pennies of struggling working-class Irish parents.
They settled initially in the cities of the Northeast, composing a quarter of the population in New York city and Boston as early as 1860.
The same was true of many members of the second most numerous immigrant group; the Germans. The influx of refugees from Germany between 1830 and 1860 was hardly spectacular than that from Ireland. During these troubled years, over a million and a half Germans stepped onto American soil. They prospered with astonishing ease, building towns in Wisconsin, Agricultural colonies in Texas, and religious communities in Pennsylvania. They added a decidedly Germanic flavor to the heady brew of reform and community building that so animated antebellum America.
These “Germans” actually hailed from many different Old World lands, because there was no unified nation of Germany until 1871, when the ruthless and crafty Prussian Otto von Bismarck assembled the German state out of a mosaic of independent Principalities, Kingdom, and duchies. Until that time, “Germans” came to America as Prussians, Bavarians, Hessians, Rhinelanders, Pomeranians, and Westphalians. They arrived at different times and for many different reasons. Some, particularly the so-called Forty-Eighters-the refugees from the failed democratic revolution of 1848-hungered for democracy they had failed to win in Germany. Others, Particularly Jew, Pietists, and Anabaptist groups like the Amish and the Mennonites, coveted religious freedom. And they came not only to America. Like the Italians later, many Germans sought a new life in Brazil, Argentina, or Chile. But the largest number ventured int. the United States.
Typical German immigrants arrived with fatter purses than their Irish counterparts. Small landowners or independent artisans in their native countries, they did not have to settle for bottom-rung industrial employment in the grimy factories of the northeast and instead could afford to push on to the open spaces of the American West. These Germanic colonizers of Americas heartland also formed religious communities, none more distinctive or durable than the Amish settlements of Pennsylvania, Indiana, and Ohio.
Many of the Germanic new comers, unlike the Irish, possessed a modest amount of material goods. Most of them pushed out to the lush lands of the Middle West notably Wisconsin, where they settled and established model farms.
Germanys loss was Americas gain. The hand of Germans in shaping American life was widely felt in still other ways. The Conestoga wagon, the Kentucky rifle, and the Christmas tree were all German contributions to American culture. Accustomed to the “Continental Sunday” and uncured by Puritan tradition, they made merry on the Sabbath and drank huge quantities of an amber beverage called bier (beer), which dates its real popularity in America to their coming.
The migration of eastern European Jews reveals still a different pattern. In the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, one-third of the Jew living in eastern Europe left there, and 90 percent of those came to the United States. The largest number of eastern European Jews came from Russia, comprising nearly one-eighth of all immigrants after 1900. Overpopulation, industrialization that reduced the demand for skilled craftsmen, and legal constraints on Jews all contributed to the choice to leave. Religious persecution, however, was undoubtedly the most important single reason for their migration. Pogroms occurred sporadically throughout these decades, notably in Russia in the early 1880s and from 1903 to 1906. This religious dimension marked Jewish immigration as different: whole communities chose to emigrate, including businessmen, professionals, and intellectuals as well as works and farmers. They became the most urban of immigrant groups, setting initially in the ci!
ties of the Northeast, especially New York, where half of all eastern European Jews in the United States resided in 1914.
Before 1920, Jews had arrived in two stages – a trickle from Germany in the mind – nineteenth century followed by a torrent from Eastern Europe in the years between 1890 and 1920. Unusual among the New Immigrants, Eastern European Jews had migrated as families and without a thought of return. By 1935 even these late arrivals had entered the middle class. Children of immigrant tailors and peddler, they had risen to white-collar jobs, meanwhile founding numerous institutions to ease adjustment to American life. Countless immigrant women found their first American employment in shops.
Despite such successes, the American Jewish community was not prepared for the catastrophe of Hitlers Holocaust in Europe. Jews had long fought to convince their fellow Americans of their loyalty, and many now reared that a old advocacy of intervention in Europe during the isolationist 1930s would undo their years of effort. The circumspect American Jewish Conference, dominated by wealthy German Jews, clashed with the more aggressive American Jewish congress, made up mostly of Eastern European Jews. Such internal bickering compromised the political effectiveness of the American Jewish community, hampering its efforts to persuade the Roosevelt administration to rescue the European Jews or to open safe havens for them in the United States and Palestine profit-seeking.
During the written essay, I know that even now the phenomenon of immigration over and over again. It is true that America was built by people. How many immigrants now? It may surprise you, but in spite of all the strict Immigration Acts passed by the American Congress during the last few decades, millions of people are still coming to this country. Although these people are native of many different countries, each natural group is comparatively small. We see, immigrants come from different countries, speak different languages, have different religious beliefs. But what is different is not necessarily worse, and probably the main thing that distinguishes immigrants is their attitude towards their future. Recent immigrants generally earn less than native Americans. There are many obvious reasons for this reduced income, including language difficulties, short American work experience, lack of funds and credit history to start their own businesses, and discrimination in employment!
Dobbs Ferry. “The Jews in America”, Oceana Publications, 1971
William V. Shannon “The American Irish”, The Macmillian Co. , N.Y
1964 , Page 131-151
Berliner Paul “American Judaism”, Chicago University of Chicago Press.
1972 , Page 22-42
Dick Armey “The Impact of Immigration” Register , 5, July, 1994
Chairman Lamar Smith “Immigration in the National Interest Act of 1995”
Register , 12, May, 1995