Curated Collections of the Most Useful Facts.

What's This?
Ellis Island

Ellis Island

Ellis Island is an island in New York Harbor and was the gateway for millions of immigrants to the United States as the nation's busiest immigrant inspection station from 1892 until 1954. The island was greatly expanded with landfill between 1892 and 1934.

 

Curated by

Geordi Taylor

Geordi Taylor

54 Knowledge Cards

Views    912

Share     twitter share  

Curated Facts

The main building was restored after 30 years of abandonment and opened as a museum on September 10, 1990.

Article: National Parks of New Yor...
Source: Fact Sheet: Statue of Lib...

Before being designated as the site of one of the first Federal immigration station by President Benjamin Harrison in 1890, Ellis Island had a varied history. The local Indian tribes had called it “Kioshk” or Gull Island. Due to its rich and abundant oyster beds and plentiful and profitable shad runs, it was known as Oyster Island for many generations during the Dutch and English colonial periods

Article: National Parks of New Yor...
Source: Fact Sheet: Statue of Lib...

To create additional space at Ellis Island, two new islands were created (from about 1903 – 1910) using landfill from New York City subway tunnels and other sources. The second island became home to the hospital administration and contagious diseases ward, and the third island held the psychiatric ward.

Article: Ellis Island Trivia: Litt...
Source: Ellis Island Trivia: Litt...

Even though Ellis Island is considered a New York City attraction,  only part of the island is actually in the state of New York – about 80% of the island is in New Jersey. In fact, after a lengthy court battle, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in 1998 that the state of New Jersey had authority over most of the 27.5 acres that make up Ellis Island.

Article: Ellis Island Trivia: Litt...
Source: Ellis Island Trivia: Litt...

The problem for many of those who wanted to emigrate was that they couldn't find any regular employment in the first place. Without steady income, saving such a fare could be difficult if not impossible.

Article: The journey to Ellis Isla...
Source: The journey to Ellis Isla...

The journey to Ellis Island, the New York immigration reception point from 1892, usually began with receipt of a pre-paid ticket from a family member already settled in America. Those that could afford to buy their fare themselves were small in number. Steerage fares between 1880 and the start of World War 1 held fairly steady at £4-£5 which was equal to half the annual income of a labourer.

Article: The journey to Ellis Isla...
Source: The journey to Ellis Isla...

Immigrants who arrived here (Italy and Austro-Hungary had the largest numbers of immigrants) in possession of a first or second class ticket were given cursory examinations shipboard and allowed to enter America with little delay. Steerage - or poorer passengers - were subject to more rigorous examinations and were denied entry if obviously ill. In all, only 2% of all arrivals were sent back to their countries.

Article: Ellis Island
Source: Ellis Island, New York Ci...

From 1892 to 1954, Ellis Island was the immigrant gateway to America. More than 12 million people would arrive here on the way to their new life in a new country. Many had little or no money, some were ill, others had family waiting for them on the other side of the gate

Article: Ellis Island
Source: Ellis Island, New York Ci...

It has been estimated that one out of every two Americans living today can trace his or her family history back to at least one ancestor who passed through the famous immigration station on New York's Ellis Island.

Article: Ellis Island Era Immigrat...
Source: Ellis Island Era Immigrat...

Contrary to popular mythology, a huge percentage of European immigrants to the United States never dreamt of settling permanently on these shores, but rather hoped only to earn enough money in America to return prosperously to their home countries. In the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, nearly half of all European immigrants eventually repatriated to their homelands

Article: Ellis Island Era Immigrat...
Source: Ellis Island Era Immigrat...
Player
feedback