Definition of ellis and angel island

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definition of ellis and angel island

Angel Island: Gateway to Gold Mountain by Russell Freedman

Angel Island, off the coast of California, was the port of entry for Asian immigrants to the United States between 1892 and 1940. Following the passage of legislation requiring the screening of immigrants, the other Ellis Island processed around one million people from Japan, China, and Korea. Drawing from memoirs, diaries, letters, and the wall poems discovered at the facility long after it closed, the nonfiction master Russell Freedman describes the people who came, and why; the screening process; detention and deportation; changes in immigration policy; and the eventual renaissance of Angel Island as a historic site open to visitors. Includes archival photos, source notes, bibliography, and index.
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Angel Island Immigration Station Tour - AIISF

US History

It functioned as both an immigration and deportation facility, at which some , Chinese and about 60, Japanese immigrants were detained under oppressive conditions, generally from two weeks to six months, before being allowed to enter the United States. Unlike Ellis Island , where Europeans were subject to restrictions that precluded entrance for some but not most immigrants, the Angel Island Immigration Station employed discriminatory policies that were used to prevent Asians from immigrating. This approach was an outgrowth and implementation of the Chinese Exclusion Act of , which had resulted from years of racial hostility by white Americans against immigrant Chinese labourers. Passengers arriving in San Francisco were screened aboard ship and separated by nationality. Europeans and first-class passengers were generally permitted immediate entrance to the city.

The station also functioned as an interrogation and detention center during the height of national hostility toward Chinese and other Asians seeking new lives in the United States. In sharp contrast to the much smaller and mostly flat Ellis Island, Angel Island is dominated by an foot-high peak. After serving for thousands of years as hunting and fishing territory for the coastal Miwok people, the island came under Spanish colonial control during the late eighteenth century and passed to the United States in , after the Mexican War. In , the U. Army established a camp on the island and built artillery installations along its shore.

After his death, his family sold the Island to the state of New York. In , as America was preparing. On December 31, a transition in history occured. New York City would start a new era in the history of the United States starting with the opening of Ellis Island as an immigration depo. This attracted many immigrants to the United Stated because of more job opportunities and as means to start a new life. As more immigrants came to America, it began to be known as the "land of opportunities". Immigrants coming in filled work spaces in industries with the hopes of someday becoming successful.

Chinese immigration

In , construction of an Immigration Station began in the area known as China Cove. The facility, primarily a detention center, was designed to control the flow of Chinese into the country, since they were officially not welcomed with the passage of the Chinese Exclusion Act of Soon, discriminatory legislation forced them out of the gold fields and into low-paying, menial jobs. They laid tracks for the Central Pacific Railroad, reclaimed swamp land in the Sacramento delta, developed shrimp and abalone fisheries, and provided cheap labor wherever there was work no other group wanted or needed. During the s, an economic downturn resulted in serious unemployment problems and led to politically motivated outcries against immigrants who would work for low wages. In reaction to states starting to pass immigration laws, the federal government asserted its authority to control immigration and passed the first immigration law in The Exclusion Acts, a series of restrictive laws prohibiting immigration, specifically targeted Chinese immigrants.


  1. Deonilde G. says:

    Ellis Island VS. Angel Island – Lit Immigrants and Comics

  2. Gervasio R. says:

    When the “Enemy” Landed at Angel Island | National Archives

  3. Fiacre F. says:

    Ellis and Angel Island Tap card to see definition. Things that cause a person to leave his/her country (war, famine, Ellis Island. the port of entry for most.

  4. Otilde S. says:

    NPR Choice page

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