In thepresentis not so different. During good times, migration was good news for Americans, we were welcomed as long as the economy was strong. But if there was a hard time, all of them changed and the immigrants were cast out or accused of stealing Americans jobs.
At 1880 the door was wide open from European immigrants. Arriving at Ellis Island was like a dream but being a teenage immigrant sometimes was nightmarish. It was such an experience,Anna Lee Hnetinkawas one of the first to arrive here, from Austro-Hungary. The boat anchored at mid-bay and the ship was in. We got off the boat… and went right into the building. All full with people, like thousands of people. It was February, I remember. It was so hot, and we were wearing wool. “AnnaLee Hnetinka, LornaHnetinka!” A man shouted, we were on a list, the immigrants one. That was good news for us, theHnetinkagirls would find a job soon. “Go to theHamptonsline please!”