The Immigration Experience
They are our grandparents, our relatives, our friends. They are the immigrants. They came from all over the world for many reasons, such as, religious persecution and racial tension, but the largest reason for coming to America was for freedom. The freedom to live where we want, to own property, to take part in the government and most importantly, the freedom to be treated like a human being. Coming over was extremely difficult. For some, there were good, seaworthy boats, but most boats were overcrowded, dirty, and disgusting. For Jews, the passage was extremely difficult because of the non-kosher ship food. People were pushed together like cattle. Most people became seasick. From one account came descriptions of unsanitary bathrooms. This, surely, must have been torture, but, hopefully, most immigrants found the dreadful trip to be worth the freedom at the other end. Ellis Island, also, was far from sanitary. The pe...