Immigration policies/internal migration

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    Colonial Era

    This was the first and longest era of immigration, lasting until the American Revolution in 1775; during this time settlements grew from initial English toe-holds from the New World to British America. It brought Northern European immigrants, primarily of British, German, and Dutch decent. The British ruled from the mid-17th century and were by far the largest group of arrivals, remaining within the British Empire. Over 90% of these early immigrants became farmers.
  • Jamestown

    Established by the Virginia Company of London, Jamestown was the first permant English settlement in America.
  • Plymouth Colony

    Plymouth Colony
    The Plymouth colony was founded in 1620 by anglican seperatists. Who are now known as the "pilgrims." The Plymouth Colony is regarded as one of the first successful colonies in America. The colony was later merged with the Massachusetts bay colony in 1691.
  • Massachusettes Bay Colony

    Massachusettes Bay Colony
    The colony was successful, with about 20,000 people migrating to New England in the 1630s. The population was strongly Puritan, and its governance was dominated by a small group of leaders who were strongly influenced by Puritan religious leaders.
  • Louisiana Purchase

    In 1803 President Jefferson purchased the Louisiana territory from France for 15 million. This allowed for many American to move west. This allowed for the creation of many new farmers and land owners.
  • Trail of Tears

    Trail of Tears
    The Trail of Tears was a series of forced relocations of Native American nations in the United States following the Indian Removal Act of 1830. The relocated people suffered from exposure, disease, and starvation while en route, and more than ten thousand died before reaching their various destinations. The removal included members of the Cherokee, Muscogee, Seminole, Chickasaw, and Choctaw nations, from their ancestral homelands in the Southeastern United States to an area west of the Mississip
  • The Oregon Trail

    The Oregon Trail had been used for decades by fur trappers and other traders. In 1843 the trail was first starting to be used by migrantrs. In 1843 around 1,000 migrants headed for Oregon. They were initially lead by John Gantt, but Marcus Whittman later took lead. In 1848 during the Califorinia Gold Rush many started to use the trail in order to get to California. Around 120,000 used the trail at this time to get to California.
  • Manifest Destiny

    This was a time period in which America believed that it should be able to stretch across North America. It included adding Oregon, texas, and Southwest Mexico to the United States. Many headed west for better economical oppurtunities. When gold was discovered in this area many more came hoping to find their fortune,
  • California Gold Rush

    California Gold Rush
    The California Gold Rush began in 1848 when gold was discovered in California. The news of gold brought some 300,000 gold seekers to California. While most of the newly arrived were Americans, the Gold Rush also attracted some tens of thousands from Latin America, Europe, Australia, and Asia.
  • Homestead Act

    Signed into law by Abraham Lincoln, this act offered 160 acres of free land in the west, in return for "improving" the land for 5 years. This act was an attept to bring more people into the frontier and help speed up settlement.
  • From Rags to Riches

    During this time Horatio Alger Jr. released the book, "Ragged Dick." The overall plot of this story was a poor teenager who is homeless, smokes, and drinks. He then decides he wants to work hard and make more money. With determination the poor boy goes form being homeless, to living in the middle-class. This story was an inspiration to many immigrants who wanted to leave their poverty in their home countries and mocve to Ameica for a better life.
  • Transcontinental Railroad

    When the transcontinental railroad finished in 1869, the east and the west coast were finally connected. It provided cheap, fast, and safe travel for migrants moving to new states for work.
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    The Guilded Age

    During this time period, immigrants from all over Europe immigrated to US cities and found jobs in factories. Also, during this time period many Americans moved west into the frontier. The frontier offered gold, cattle, and cheap land The Homestead Act (see timeline), brought many American farmers into the frontier. While many small, family farms were built, much larger trust owned bonanza farms were built. These were huge plantations run by the extremely wealthy monopolies.
  • Chinese Exclusion Act

    Chinese Exclusion Act
    Signed by president Chester A. Aurthur, this act stopped all immigration of chinese laborors. This was the first law ever implemented to prevent a specific ethnic group from immigrating to the US. Chinese immigration to the US began during the California Golf Rush in 1848 and continued after that. American citenzens did not like the chinese becasause they were willing to work for much lower pay and took many American's jobs.
  • Spanish-American War

    As a result of the United State's victory over Spain, the US gained new territories such as Puerto Rico and the Phillipines. While a war was being fought in the Philippines, some Americans moved to Puerto Rico. With the closing of the frontier, America wes looking for new places to expand. Some white farmers also moved to Hawaii.
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    The Great Migration

    The Great Migration was the migration of many african americans from the rural south to the urban northern cities. They left to escape the segregation of the south. They also left for the opportunities that arose due to the first world war.
  • The Quota act of 1921/ The immigration act of 1924

    These acts were used to curb the amount of eastern europeans entering the country. This occured due to the red scare duirng this time. The act only allowed 3% of the easrtern european population during 1890 into the United States every year. In 1924 the p[ercent allowed was lowered to only 2%.
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    Great Depression

    The Great depression was the only time in US history when more people were leaving the US than coming. The average annual number of immigrants for 1931-1940 was 6,900. Broke, unemplyed people flocked to the outskirts of cities and built shack towns known as Hoovervilles. Many people moved often in search of work.
  • Braceros

    During WWII the US was short on farm workers so they imported temporory workers from Mexico, known as Braceros. The braceros were given decent wages and living conditions. Many illegal immigrants came from Mexico to work on the farms as well.
  • African Americans during WWII

    During World War Two more blacks continued to move from the South to Northern cities or to the west.
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    The Baby Boom

    The number of anual births exeeded 2 per 100 women (or aproximately 1% of the population size. It is estimated that 78.3 million Americans were born during this time period.
  • Suburbia

    The prosperity of the 50s led to the develpment of surburban towns called Levittowns. These were smaller towns outside of cities similar to surburbs today. All of the properties were mostely the same, and most men communted to work in cars on the new highway system. These towns were populated by white families, and most men had white collar jobs.
  • White Flight

    White Flight
    During the 1950s many white families moved out of urban cities and into the mostley white suburbs. Most white people moved out of cities, while the African Americans often did not have enough money to leave so they stayed.
  • Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965

    Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965
    The Immigration Act abolished the quota system that was out into place in the 1920s. The civil rightrs movement led people to view the quota system as discriminatory and needed to be changed. In the three decades following passage of the Immigration and Naturalization Act of 1965, more than 18 million legal immigrants entered the United States, more than three times the number admitted over the preceding 30 years.