Immigration to the United States, 1789-1930

Immigration to the United States, 1789-1930 is a web-based collection of historical material from the libraries, archives, and museums from Harvard University that documents voluntary immigration to the United States. The period concerned goes from the signing of the Constitution to the onset of the Great Depression, but concentrates mainly on the 19th century. The collection includes over 400.000 pages from more than 2.200 books, pamphlets, and serials, over 9.600 pages from manuscript and archival collections, and more than 7.800 photographs. By incorporating diaries, biographies, and other writings capturing diverse experiences, the collected material provides a window into the lives of ordinary immigrants. In addition, the website includes contextual information on voluntary immigration, and quantitative data.

Sources are primarily in English, but at least twenty other languages are present, including German, Swedish, French, Norwegian, Polish, Italian, Finnish, Yiddish, and Ukrainian.

Advanced search in the entire collection is possible. It is also possible to browse the material: textual material can be browsed by form/genre (anecdotes, bibliography, biography, cookery, correspondence, diaries, drama, fiction, genealogy, handbooks, poetry, songs and music, statistics, wit and humour), while visual material can be browsed on separate pages (maps, material in Harvard’s Social Museum Collection, and material in the Children’s Aid Society).

Material can be downloaded in JPEG and PDF format. Zoom options are available. Typewritten textual sources are shown as searchable text (both the digitized version of the original or the transcription are available).

The project is made possible with support of the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation.

Last update

Monday, 24 November 2014 - 12:03pm
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