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Brennan Armknecht

Mr. Widenhofer
AP US History
January 9, 2018

Due to similarities such as nativism, reason for immigration, and power possessed by

these peoples and differences such as location, linguistics, religion, and sheer numbers, this

argument is only partially valid.

Throughout the 19th century, the United States changed drastically. The united states was

experiencing an influx of urbanization, thus opening manufacturing jobs. Meanwhile, Europe

was struggling with a lack of opportunity and political oppression. This led many to believe

immigrating to the USA was the best option. Industrial Revolutions caused a shift in the

economy, making more people shift to the cities. These people shifted to the cities, and the

percentage of people living in urban areas finally outweighed the people in rural.

Although the state above is only partially valid, there are still similarities between the

new and old immigrants. Those being, why they came here, what they experienced, and the

power that the group possessed. In both the new and old immigration, immigrants came to the

US in search of a better life. They came to climb up the “social/economic ladder” and support

themselves and their families. They saw America as a place where a person could come and

build a life. Another reason why immigrants came here was in search of religious freedom.

Peoples such as the Irish (Catholic) and Jews experienced hardships in their native countries

because of their religion, especially the Jews. The Jews were a part of the New Immigration, and

they left because other people attacked villages in their homeland. Other groups of people held
pogroms, where they would go into a Jewish village, burn it down, and they would probably kill

or injure people in the process. People came to the US because they needed it for survival, the

other similarity between the two immigrations. In the Old immigration there was the “Know-

Nothing Party”, Which was made up of anti-immigrants. In the New immigration, there was the

APA which was anti-Catholic which included almost all of the new immigrants and the Irish.

Though both immigrants fell partial victim to political machines, they still held a stake in

election power.

There are some similarities between the New and the Old immigration, but the

differences outweigh the similarities. The differences between the Old and New immigration

included: the assimilation of immigrants, where they came from, as well as ideas they brought

over. The Old immigrants were from West Europe, from countries such as: Britain, Ireland, and

Germany. The New immigrants were from southern Europe and Eastern Europe and where they

came from influenced how they assimilated. The Old immigrants spoke mainly English, or they

w ere bilingual, and most of them were literate. The New immigrants were very different. They

only spoke their native language, and most couldn’t write in that language, much less in English.

The old immigrants were majority protestant while the new were predominantly catholic. The

old immigrants had a better financial situation, allowing more of them to settle in more rural

areas along with the urban. The New immigrants were very poor, and they had to settle in those

horrible areas. Finally, the New immigrants brought new ideas, “social philosophies”. Such as:

communism, anarchism, and socialism which ultimately cause the US to start cracking down on

immigration in the 1900s (synthesis).

Although there are similarities between the Old and New immigration, there are still

many differences. The people came from different areas, had different languages, and believed in
different things (religions and “isms”). The immigration changed over time between two

different groups of people, which affected immigration as a whole, and shows that the New and

Old immigration are different.

Immigration was affected as a whole because of this change the new immigrants brought

a concept called communism. Many people were already afraid of this, but it intensified after

WWI when Russia fell into the grasp of communism. This cause the Red Scare in all of the US,

and the Emergency Quota Act and the Natural Origins Act were implemented, bringing almost

all immigration to a halt. This relates to the New and old immigration by showing a reaction to

one of the things the New immigrants were bring here. The US was scared of this idea, and

because of this, they started to funnel immigration. Immigration was a cause and effect. It

brought these people in, and it brought their ideas in, such as communism. Without the

differences in the types of immigration, America would not be the country that it is today. The

US is very diverse, and even though it halts immigration at some points, it manages to accept

almost everyone. Everyone here has been an immigrant. Whether it’s the natives, which came

over thousands of years ago, Pilgrims that came 400 years ago, or people coming in now. There

are simply always going to be differences between them and that’s why the statement is only

partially valid.