To arrive at Ellis Island
What happend when you arrived to New York as an emigrant? What could they
The inspectors came on board
||Before the big ship arrived to New York harbour, the inspectors came on board.
This happened in the area of "quarantine" at the entrance to Lower Bay.
All passangers on board didn´t have to enter to Ellis Island, those who
travelled in first- and second class, were inspected on board. The inspectors checked
diseases such as cholera, plague, typhoid,
measles and diphtheria etc. If any one had this disease they were sent further on to Ellis
Island. But this happened very seldom.
The theory was:
If a person could afford to travel in first or second class the change to
a burden for America in health care or in criminality was not so big.
Passangers with American citizenship were never checked.
The Statue of Liberty in sight !
|After the control on board, the ship continued north to Upper New York Bay and
towards the harbour. Slowly the Manhattan skyline could be seen, but the first
the emigrants sighted was the Statue of Liberty.
This must have been an amazing view after a very long journey over the
|An 80 year old German emigrant says::
|"I thought she was one of the seven wonders of the world"
When first and second class passengers disembarked in the harbour of New York, third
were sent further to Ellis Island for inspection. Third class passengers
to a ferry who took the emigrants to the island.
When there were many emigrants, people had to wait on board the ship
before they were
sent to Ellis Island. When a ship arrived after 5 PM all passangers had
to wait until the morning to take the ferry to Ellis Island.
The emigrants had name tags with the individual´s manifest number sticked on their
Every ferry could take 30 passengers at the time together with all the luggage they
brought with them.
At Ellis Island
When they arrived they met a lot of other emigrants from different places in
A lot of languages were spoken. Some interpretators took care of them and
in to the big entrance hall.
Now followed the medical examination »
|Source/Pictures: The Statue of Liberty-Ellis Island Foundation