Senior curator Bruce Bustard and exhibit designer Ray Ruskin talk about the ideas and the creation of our exhibit “Attachments,” which uses immigration records from the National Archives to tell the story of people entering America’s gate.
The video also features Erika Lee and Michael Pupa talking about their experiences finding a piece of their own personal history in the National Archives.
“Attachments” closes September 4!
What were the dreams, realities, and experiences of the people who passed through Ellis Island? Tomorrow at 7 pm, a panel explores the dreams, realities, and experiences of the people who passed through Ellis Island.
Panelists include Megan Smolenyak, genealogy expert and author of Hey America, Your Roots are Showing; Marian Smith, historian at U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services; John Phillip Colletta, genealogy expert and lecturer; and Joel Wurl, senior program officer at the National Endowment for the Humanities. A book signing will follow the program.
Join us at 7 pm on Wednesday at the McGowan Theater in the National Archives in Washington, DC. Enter through the Special Events entrance on Constitution Avenue.
On Friday, June 15 at noon, curator Bruce Bustard discusses the stories featured in “Attachments: Faces and Stories from America’s Gates,” a new exhibition opening to the public on June 15.
Historian Erika Lee, co-author of Angel Island: Immigrant Gateway to America, will also discuss her grandparents’ experience immigrating through Angel Island. A book signing will follow the program.
Join us in the William G. McGowan Theater at the National Archives for “Angel Island: Immigrant Gateway to America.” Enter through the Special Events entrance on Constitution Avenue.
Our new exhibit opens June 15! Attachments: Faces and Stories from America’s Gates draws from the millions of immigration case files in the National Archives to tell a few of these stories from the 1880s through World War II.
Come and explore the attachment of immigrants to family and community, and the attachment of government organizations to laws that reflected certain beliefs about immigrants and citizenship. There are dramatic tales of joy and disappointment, opportunity and discrimination, deceit and honesty.
“Attachments” will be on view through September 4 in the National Archives. Admission is free!
Just 8 more days until the 1940 Census will be released online!
Dorothea Lange took this photograph just days after the 1940 Census. This woman’s story reflects the experience of many Americans who lived through the 1930s.
The original caption reads:
Edison Kern County, California. Age 70, she came from near Greely, Nebraska, with sister age 65 nephew age 30, and brother age 68. She says, “My father was a pioneer in Nebraska. He went there in ‘79. He was born in Ireland. I remember when we lived in a dugout in Nebraska, but he left us three good farms. He had a timber claim, a homestead, and he bought one farm. My father’s been dead for 20 years and we lost everything including our minds, nearly, trying to keep what he left us. We paid taxes for nearly 50 years there, but we only saved out enough to build us this trailer home. We came to California in June 1938. We just started out. We had good land back there - wheat, corn, orchard, chickens, cows, cream, eggs. Independent, we had everything ‘til the drought came. There’s not many of the old settlers left. It’s discouraging I tell you to go out once or twice a week and come home with a dollar. Yesterday we went 37 miles to pick peas and worked 5 hours. We’ve got relatives back East and they just can’t understand how these things are.”