Christopher Columbus lands in the Bahamas. European Colonization of North and South America begins.
Jamestown Fort Founded
The Jamestown fort in Jamestown, Virginia becomes the first permanent English Settlement in the New World.
Mayflower Reaches Plymouth Rock
The Mayflower, carrying English pilgrims, land at Plymouth Rock. The Pilgrims draft and sign the Mayflower Compact, the first constitution-like document in the New World.
Declaration of Independence
Naturalization Act of 1790
This act designed a consistent set of standards for the naturalization of U.S. residents. It only offers a path to naturalization for people who are "free white persons" and of "good moral character."
The Naturalization Act of 1798
Part of the Alien and Sedition Acts, this act allowed president John Adams to deport political opponents, and raised the residency requirement to 14 years to marginalize the new immigrants who primarily voted for the Republican Party.
Manifest of Immigrants Act of 1819
Congress passes a law that requires shipmasters to provide manifests of all the immigrants they are bringing to the US. This act also required the Secretary of State to report the annual number of immigrants to Congress.
Between 1830-1840 600,000 immigrants arrive in the US.
Italian Economy Collapses
Over the next 20 years nearly 4 million Italian Immigrants will arrive in the U.S.
Czar Alexander Assassinated
Beware of the Ides of March. The ensuing political unrest causes nearly 3 million Russians to emigrate the U.S. over a 40 year span.
Chinese Exclusion Act
Signed by President Chester A. Arthur this legislation prohibited any Chinese Laborers from entering the U.S. It was initially intended to last for 10 years.
Act to Regulate Immigration
This regulation stated that anybody coming into the United States "...must be able to sustain themselves without becoming a liability to the public."
Alien Contract Labor Law
Immigration Restriction League Founded
The IRL attempts to educate the public on the need for laws that restrict immigration.
Spanish American War
U.S. acquires the territories of Puerto Rico and Guam.
The Nationalization Act
Passed by Theodore Roosevelt this act made it mandatory for immigrants to learn English before they could become naturalized.
In 1910 14.7% of the U.S. population was foreign born. This was the highest level since the American Revolution.
In an effort to solve the Southwest labor shortage, the Dillingham Commission allows Mexican immigrants to come to the U.S. without having to pay a head tax.
Arizona Becomes a State
U.S. Enters World War 1
Anti-German sentiment and xenophobia rise.
Immigration Act of 1924
This law set annual quotas in attempt to stem the flow of immigrants from specific countries.
Lemon Grove Incident
Superior Court of San Diego ruled that segregating Mexican immigrants in separate schools was unconstitutional.
Attack on Pearl Harbor
Surprise attack on Pearl Harbor Naval base in Hawaii. U.S. becomes involved in World War 2.
Japanese Internment Begins
FDR begins the internment of Japanese-American citizens.
U.S. begins bringing Mexican migrant workers into the Southwest to help with the war effort.
This law repealed the Chinese Exclusion act of 1882.
War Bride Act
Many GIs got married while they were serving during World War 2. This law granted their foreign born wives U.S. citizenship.
Stainback V. Mo Hock Ke Lok Po
Hawaii district court rules that statute forbidding gifted children from learning a foreign language was unconstitutional.
Ellis Island Closes
Fidel Castro and Che Guevara succesfully revolt in Cuba. In the following months 200,000 Cubans emigrate to the U.S.
Bracero Program Ends
The Bracero Program ends, but undocumented migrant workers continue to flow into the Southwest.
Armed Forces Naturalization Act
This act allowed immigrants to become naturalized through service in the United States Military.
The 1980 Census estimates that between 2-4 million immigrants are living in the US illegally.
Immigration Reform and Control Act
This act granted citizenship to qualified illegal immigrants who entered the US before 1982.
National Count of Unauthorized Immigrants
The first detailed account of unauthorized immigrants in the US estimates that 3.4 million people reside in the US illegally.
California's Prop 187 is Declared Unconstitutional
This proposition would have denied healthcare, education, and welfare benefits to illegal immigrants.
US DHS Estimates
The US Department of Homeland Security estimates that 11.7 million illegal immigrants reside in the US
SB 1070 Passed
This law made it a misdemeanor for an alien immigrant to be in Arizona with carrying required documents, and allowed officers to determine a person's immigration status during a lawful traffic stop if the officer had reasonable suspicion.