American Immigration

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In History
  • Period: to

    The Colonial Period

    The basic division that eventually led to the Civil War was established in this period.
    In the northern colonies such many colonists came for religious freedom. They had small farms and were what we would call middle-class.
    The original intention of the first southern colonies was profit. The first settlers in Virginia, for example, were fortune seekers looking for gold and trade routes. When those ideas failed, they turned to farming.
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    The First Wave

    Scots-Irish and Germans were the major immigrant groups. After, the War of Independence, there was not much immigration until 1820.
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  • War of Independence Era

    Less than 4 million Americans
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    The Second Wave

    During this period, from 1820 to 1890, The US went from being mainly a rural and agricultural society to the beginnings of an industrial society. Many Irish and Norwegians emigrated during this period. The Irish were very dependent on the potato and when the potato crop failed in the 1840’s many either emigrated or faced starvation.
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  • First Norwegians immigrated to the US

    First Norwegians immigrated to the US
    This first group of Norwegian immigrants were Quakers, who felt discriminated against because of their religion. Religious persecution and poverty was some of the reasons for emigration.
    Between 1820 and 1925 as many as 860,000 Norwegians emigrated to the U.S. The early immigrants often came from farms and therefore they settled in rural areas in the Midwest.
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  • Gold was found in Carlifornia

    The California Gold Rush was sparked by the discovery of gold nuggets in the Sacramento Valley in early 1848. As news spread of the discovery, thousands of prospective gold miners traveled by sea or over land to San Francisco and the surrounding area; by the end of 1849, the non-native population of the California territory was some 100,000 (compared with the pre-1848 figure of less than 1,000).
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  • Homestead Act

    The act granted 160 acres (65 hectares) of unappropriated public lands to anyone who paid a small filing fee and agreed to work on the land and improve it over a five-year period. The Homestead Act proved one of the most important pieces of legislation in the history of the American West, as hundreds of thousands of people moved to the Great Plains in an effort to take advantage of the free land.
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  • Chinese Exclusion Act

    Formally know as the Immigration Act of 1882, U.S. federal law that was the first and only major federal legislation to explicitly suspend immigration for a specific nationality. The basic exclusion law prohibited Chinese labourers—defined as “both skilled and unskilled laborers and Chinese employed in mining”—from entering the country. Link text
  • Period: to

    The Third Wave

    Now the US received a new type of immigrant. They moved from Eastern and Southern European cities to American cities and worked in industry.
    The promised land began to seem less and less promising as immigrants were stuffed into tenement buildings in over-crowded cities and forced to work in factories under deplorable conditions.

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  • Stock Market Crash

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    Fourth Wave

    Mixture of Asians (Koreans, Vietnamese, Cambodians, Chinese and Japanese,) and Hispanics, people who speak Spanish. The Asians, as a rule, are successful. Hispanics have not been as successful as the Asians.
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  • 9/11

    At the beginning of the 21st century, the multicultural debate took a new turn; from ethnic and visible differences to more concealed and hidden cultural and religious practices. Particularly after 9/11, multicultural diversity was in some countries seen as a threat, not only to Western values, but also to Western civilisation.
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