This Day in History
Ellis Island - Main Hall

Congress passes Bill Limiting Immigrants
May 19, 1921

From the founding of the nation until 1917 (after that time, quota restrictions were imposed by “old” Americans who feared that newcomers would somehow dilute the sacrosanct blood of an earlier race) the United States welcomed all newcomers and invited them to join its social, and eventually, its political community. Though not quite the melting pot the Jewish playwright, Israel Zangwell, named it, America during those years did indeed prove to be a Promised Land to many. Every child in Scotland, so Andrew Carnegie assures us, knew that in America:

A man is a man if he’s willing to toil
And the humblest may gather the fruit of the soil.
Their children are blessings, and he who has most
Has aid for his fortune and riches to boast.
There the young may exult and the aged may rest
Away far away, to the land of the West.

July's Archived Features:

Friday July 1, 2022



All illustrations by Mort Künstler. Text by Michael Aubrecht, Dee Brown, Henry Steele Commager, Rod Gragg, Mort Künstler, Edward Lengel, James McPherson, and James I. Robertson, Jr. - Copyright © 2001-2019. All Rights Reserved. No part of the contents of this web site may be reproduced or utilized in any form by any means without written consent of the artist.