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Destination America
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Why do they come?When did they come?Take the quiz
When did they come?
1851-1860 Potato Famine

1861-1870 Land of Opportunity

1871-1880 Religious Freedom

1881-1890 The Age of Steam

1891-1900 Southern Italians

1900-1910 Russian Pogroms

European Emigration to the U.S. 1881 - 1890

Map depicting European emigration to the U.S. 1881-1890

A new surge of Irish emigration resulted from more crop failures and increasing political and religious strife. Emigration from England (and to a lesser extent Scotland and Wales) continued, mainly by skilled laborers seeking work in America's industries and farmers seeking land.

The great wave of European immigration that began around 1880 overlapped with the rise of major steamship lines that competed for immigrant fares. By 1900, the average price of a steerage ticket was about $30. Many immigrants traveled on prepaid tickets sent by relatives already in America; others bought tickets from the small army of traveling salesmen employed by the steamship lines. Before boarding their ship, emigrants went through a processing that included being bathed and "de-loused."

British Public Health officials

British Public Health officials spray disinfectant aboard a ship about to sail for the United States.

Source: Destination America by Charles A. Wills

Sources: Busch-AP, German guide-Minnesota Historical Society-CORBIS, fumigation-U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Russian pogrom-Bettmann-CORBIS, Ship-Bettman/CORBIS, Book & Series: Destination America

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