Immigration Dbq Essay

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After the Civil War, America began to focus its efforts on growing as a nation with a focus on the economy. Old immigrants flourished economically throughout the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries as the enclosure movement swept over Britain and economic opportunity shone in America. The wave of new immigrants came from the 1880s to the 1920s; however, they were met with mixed reaction from Americans. Some felt that immigrants were taking American jobs and should not be allowed in the country, while others welcomed immigrants with opened arms. Tensions were high during the period of new immigration, causing citizens to discriminate against immigrants and the government to pass legislation limiting the number of immigrants allowed in the country. The new immigrants came to the United States for several reasons. Factors forcing a population out of their homeland, included political and religious reasons. The economic conditions of their home countries were poor, finding jobs could be difficult at times. For example, the Italians and Slovakian people came to America to find a job, save the money they earned, and go back home to …show more content…

Working class Americans, especially those in the Populist Party, began to see immigrants as beggars looking for handouts in a land that was not their own (Document C). With this sentiment, Prescott Hall founded the Immigration Restriction League in 1894. The League’s goal was to restrict immigration, and impose literacy tests. Members of the League worried that these new immigrants would take Americans jobs. Further, some Americans believed that they were part of the Nordic “great race” (Document G). Booker T. Washington's speech in Atlanta showed how he thought that America was looking to the wrong group for jobs, not the immigrants but the local blacks (Document D). Americans’ tensions grew higher, causing the government to respond in a major

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