Introduction to Immigration History


  1. Immigration History... Some Questions?
    1. Why was their so much immigration to the US?
    2. What is the nature of the immigrant experience?
    3. What is the relationship between native-born and immigrants?
    4. What is the role of race, class, and gender on the immigrant experience?
  2. Factors of Migration
    1. Pushes - Why do people leave?
    2. Pulls - What attracts people to a country?
    3. Means -Is it easy or difficulty to migrate? (i.e. affordable travel, legal barriers, etc.)
  3. Ravenstein's "Laws of Migration"
    1. Every migration flow generates a return or countermigration.
    2. The majority of migrants move a short distance.
    3. Migrants who move longer distances tend to choose big-city destinations
    4. Urban residents are less migratory than inhabitants of rural areas.
    5. Families are less likely to make international moves than young adults.
  4. Daniels' immigration "myths"
    1. Plymouth Rock -Most migrated for political and religious freedom
    2. Statue of Liberty - "the wretched and the poor" came to America
    3. the "Melting Pot" - "America was a place where all nationalities blended into one"
  5. General categories of Migration
    1. Characteristic of Migrants
      1. Who leaves their homelands? At what age?
    2. Patterns of Migration
      1. From where? (i.e. cities, villages, farms, etc.)
      2. To where in the US? (i.e. specific regions, cities, rural areas, etc.)
      3. Do people remigrate back to their homeland?
    3. Volume of Migration
      1. What years do we see more or less immigration to the US?
      2. What are the connections of volume to means, pushes and pulls?