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lecture 9

by: Fernanda Navarro

lecture 9 History 1312

Fernanda Navarro

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Immigration, race and eugenics in the gilded age
U.S HIstory since 1865
Dr. Kristen Burton
Class Notes
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This 3 page Class Notes was uploaded by Fernanda Navarro on Tuesday February 23, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to History 1312 at University of Texas at Arlington taught by Dr. Kristen Burton in Summer 2015. Since its upload, it has received 27 views. For similar materials see U.S HIstory since 1865 in History at University of Texas at Arlington.


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Date Created: 02/23/16
Lecture #9  2/18/14 Immigration, Race and Eugenics in the Gilded Age The pull of the United States 1. U.S. immigration, from 1870 to 1920s 2. By 1890, 4 out of 5 people in NYC alone were immigrants th 3. Went down in the 1890s because of the depression and again in the 20  century because  of immigration restrictions New immigration 1. Chinese immigration in the west a. Mostly drawn by the possibility of finding gold b. Many sought jobs when gold wasn’t found, a lot went to work at railroads c. Anti­Chinese sentiment arose, especially in California 2. California leads in legislation against immigration and sets precedent for the rest of the  U.S. 3. Chinese Exclusion Act, 1882 st a. 1  act to place federal restriction on immigration 4. 1870­1880, more immigrants from southern and eastern Europe 5. The new wave of immigrants made way for the progressive era a. Progressives did what they could for immigrants to ease their way into the  country and feel comfortable 6. To the natives, the diversity gave them a sense of superiority that they wanted to maintain 7. The “WASPs”: white, Anglo­Saxon, protestant a. The ideal population 8. Ellis Island, opened January 1, 1892 a. Headquarters of Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) b. Over 12 million immigrants were processed here c. 1954, stopped processing  d. Later on the Statue of Liberty was completed in 1886 i. A gift from France commemorating the Declaration of Independence ii. The new source of hope 9. Physical inspection and processing a. Even before they got off the boat, immigrants were physically checked for any  disease or special conditions/disabilities b. After physical inspection, immigrants were interrogated i. Goals, motivation ii. Money iii. Ability to learn the English language iv. Ability to work c. Some were detained if status wasn’t cleared, they could be held for weeks to years at a time in holding cells 10. Angel Island (1910­1940) a. Processing approx. 1 million Asian immigrants b. Certain teachers, students, merchants, etc. were allowed into the country c. About 30% were denied admittance 11. Neighborhood enclaves a. Small areas were people of the same ethnicity or nationality would settle together b. “Little Italy,” “Chinatown,” “Little Hungary,” etc. The Eugenics Movement 1. Actively improving human race through selective breeding 2. Saw humans as a product of their genes not their environment 3. Francis  Galton, Hereditary Genius (1883) a. Eugenics, “good in birth” b. Intelligence was hereditary c. White middle and upper classes experienced a declining birthrate, opposite to  immigrant birthrate 4. Goal was to protect “Racial integrity” in the U.S., WASPs 5. Creation of new racial identities 6. Miscegenation laws a. Adopted across the country b. Interracial marriage and/or public relations were now illegal Immigration restrictions 1. Emergency Quota Act, 1921 a. Restricted the number of immigrants admitted based on the population of each  specific group in the early 1900s (1910 census) 2. 1924 Immigration Act a. Permanently set admittance quota at 2% based on the percent population of that  nationality in the 1890 census  b. The year 1890 was chosen because that’s when there was a dip in immigrants  coming into the country c. Didn’t place restriction on immigration from countries in the western hemisphere i. In 1924, roughly 89,000 legal immigrants came in from Mexico 1. Consequently, Latin Americans were the greatest/fastest growing  foreign nationality in the U.S. Race Relations and the New KKK nd 1. The 2  Ku Klux Klan th a. Revival, early 20  century b. Stood for being 100% American c. “the American way of life” d. Hate everyone except the WASPs 2. “The Birth of a Nation” D. W. Griffith, 1915 a. First film screened in the White House b. About reconstruction era in the south c. Presented influential portrayal of Black Americans and the whites i. The KKK was shown as the saviors, the Blacks as the enemy, destructive  and violent 3. The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), 1909 a. Increasing violence against Black Americans b. Many like Ida B. Wells worked to call attention to the horrors against Blacks 4. Lynching and involuntary sterilization were some of the efforts to maintain the “purity of  the United States,” or white supremacy


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