Ellis Island Closed Until Further Notice
As of May 2013: Due to the conditions caused by Hurricane Sandy, the Ellis Island Immigration Museum will be closed until further notice. A projected reopening date has not yet been established, follow our twitter account for updates. More »
This collection of oral history excerpts is from the Ellis Island Oral History Collection, which includes approximately 2,000 full interviews. The following audio clips (with accompanying transcripts) have been specifically selected to be useful in your classroom, either as part of a lesson plan from this website or integrated into your curriculum. For your convenience, both the audio file and the transcript can be accessed online and also downloaded and saved for use later without needing to be connected to the internet.
Trying New Foods
Traveling to America
Experience at Ellis Island
Holding onto Homeland Traditions
Adjusting to Life in America
Looking for ideas on how to utilize these oral histories in your classroom?
The Library of Congress' Using Primary Sources page for teachers contains steps for using primary sources in the classroom, teacher's guides, analysis tools, and other helpful information for teachers.
The National Archives' Getting Started with Primary Sources in the Classroom page for teachers contains information and resources about using primary sources, resources for National History Day, and links to "Today's Document" and "DocsTeach" online resources.
If you have any suggestions for other Oral History topics you would like to see available on this page, please e-mail us.
Did You Know?
Ellis Island was added as part of the Statue of Liberty National Monument in 1965 by Presidential Proclamation. The main building was re-opened in September 1990 as the national museum of immigration after what was considered at the time, the largest restoration project in American history.