• Immigrants awaiting inspection in front of Ellis Island's Main Building

    Ellis Island

    Part of Statue of Liberty National Monument NJ,NY

Catherine Remembers Her First Day in America

 

Catherine Remembers Her First Day in America (Transcript)

Interviewee: Catherine Hannon English
Date of Birth: May 3, 1910
Date of Interview: November 17,1991
Interviewer: Paul E. Sigrist, Jr.
Immigrated from Poland in 1920 at age 10
Ellis Island Collection: EI-116

English (First Impression of America):

There were children coming from school. And they were so sloppy looking. I thought they were orphans or something. I had visions of beautiful ribbons on their hair and the kids didn't have uniforms or anything. Then we got out at, we came up to 63rd Street and then they, the streets were so dirty. Garbage all around the place and I couldn't get here fast enough, that everything was so beautiful and clean and all this. But it, I soon broke in with the whole thing.

Download Copy of Transcript: Hannon English Impression Transcript

Did You Know?

passenger manifest

Since the passage of the "Steerage Act of 1819", passenger manifests have been required for all arriving vessels to be delivered to the U.S. Government and reported to Congress. This document, used for inspection at Ellis Island, has become an important starting point in researching family history.