Process of entering the U.S.
Prior to 1855, ships carrying passengers to the United States simply left them at the wharf, stranded to be attacked by thugs and criminals, and made prey by con men. The public feared the diseases that the new immigrants brought with them, and immigrants were ousted by society in general. After 1855, however, Castle Garden, on the southern tip of Manhattan, became an immigrant receiving center. This center enabled the U.S. Government to keep better track of its immigrants. Clerks would record the names, nationalities, and destinations of immigrants. Physicians would give routine checkups and physicals to ensure that the immigrants were healthy. Later, the receiving center was moved to Ellis Island.
|Ellis Island Wharf|
|Ellis Island Inspection Room|
The potential immigrants had
- to go through Ellis or Angel Island
- to be tested for diseases and physically fit
- to have documents from other country
- to be mentally fit
- to be ready for life in the U.S.