Re: First Class Passenger Immigrant Question #general


A. E. Jordan
 

In a message dated 99-02-25 00:17:32 EST, bobmar37@aol.com writes:

<< When I visited Ellis Island several years ago, I learned that first and
second class passengers were dropped off in Manhattan before ships left
the others at Ellis Island. Some who were rejected at Ellis Island
returned home and saved up enough money for a second class fare so they
could return and avoid the scrutiny at Ellis Island. >>


Yes that is basically correct. The way it actually worked is that the ships
anchored in the lower New York Harbor and a ferry came out >from Ellis Island
and took the people off. For years the ferry was half sunk sitting at Ellis
Island -- I saw it when I was there. The ship itself then continued on to the
piers in Hoboken or Manhattan or Brooklyn (depending on the shipping company)
and the people or class were processed there. By the way if the person was
returned to the home country it was at the cost of the shipping line. When
the immigration quotas were put in after World War I they were on a monthly
basis, so some of the ships would literally line up outside New York on the
last day of the month and wait for 12 midnight and then sail into the harbor
trying to be the first ship to arrive. In some cases the quotas were so small
that a single ship could fill a country's quota for the entire month!

Allan Jordan

aejordan@aol.com

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