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15 - Chapter 15 TELESCOPING THE TIMES Immigrants and...

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Chapter 15: TELESCOPING THE TIMES Immigrants and Urbanization CHAPTER OVERVIEW The population rises as immigrants supply a willing workforce for urban industrialization and a political base for many urban politicians. Abuses in local and national government prompt calls for reform. Section 1: The New Immigrants MAIN IDEA Immigration from Europe, Asia, the Caribbean, and Mexico reached a new high in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Between 1870 and 1920, about 20 million Europeans immigrated to the United States. Many of them came from eastern and southern Europe, which had not provided large numbers of immigrants before. Some, like Jews, fled religious persecution. Others escaped economic hardship. Some were leaving Europe full of ideas for reform and political freedom. About 300,000 Chinese immigrants came from 1851 to 1883. Thousands of immigrants came from Japan as well. From 1880 to 1920, about 260,000 immigrants came from the Caribbean. Many Mexicans also came to the United States. About a million immigrants came from 1910 to 1930 to escape political turmoil in Mexico. Most immigrants traveled by steamship, riding in steerage—the cargo holds below the ship’s waterline. Conditions were cramped, with little light or air, and unclean. Many people suffered from disease. Those who arrived in New York were processed at Ellis Island. The process, which took about five hours, determined whether they could enter the country or had to return. Asian immigrants arriving on the West coast were processed at Angel Island near San Francisco. Conditions were more unpleasant than at Ellis Island, and the processing was stricter. Once in the United States, immigrants felt confused and worried by the new culture.
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