10 Misconceptions About U.S. Immigration

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Author's Note: 10 Misconceptions About U.S. Immigration

Immigration is a loaded topic in America today, and in many other countries around the world. I don't know exactly how my great-grandparents got to America in the late 1800s/early 1900s from Eastern Europe. Nor do I know if they were greeted with open arms, suspicion or hostility. I know several of them borrowed money from family and friends to pay for a ticket in steerage, which was the cheapest way to get to America from Europe (by boat). Steerage was a pretty grim place at that point in history. People were crammed together in tight spaces. Toilets were pots and pans. Cots were lined up one next to the other, and mattresses were filled with seaweed or straw. Meals were sparse. Illness was rampant. Once they got here, they went straight to work at some pretty menial jobs. But they loved it in America. And every successive generation prospered a little bit more. I'm so grateful my ancestors were able to relocate to a country that helped them better their lives and lay a foundation for increasing prosperity for their children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren (me!). Today, I hope people around the globe are given the same opportunity.

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