By the end of the activity, students will be able to:
Images from the Peak Immigration Years exhibit
Images from page 3 of the downloadable PDF version
Head to the second floor to the Peak Immigration Years exhibit. Proceed through to the galleries until you arrive at the gallery, Closing the Doors (right behind the black and white sign that signaled Immigration Restriction).
Inform students that before we had films, people used political cartoons (and still do) to galvanize people around issues. Explain that in this activity, students will be analyzing political cartoons that will compare past and present issues on immigration. They will consider the cartoonist's point of view, how the cartoonist makes his or her point and what perspectives or considerations are not presented in the illustration. They will also think about and share their own ideas regarding issues raised in these cartoons.
Divide the students into groups of four. Instruct each group to analyze a specific set of cartoons (Set B) in the Closing the Door exhibit. Ask them to consider the following questions:
Once finished, select a contemporary cartoon (from Set A) and reflect on the same questions.
After completing the activity, head to the benches (if available) in the Great Hall. Ask each group to share their cartoons with the class and to summarize their answers to the questions. Encourage them to report back on any different interpretations they had within their group.
For either set of cartoons/images, ask the group to discuss one or more of the following questions. When comparing the images, have the students consider the questions below:
Cartoon Set A - Contemporary views of immigration, labor, and healthcare
Cartoon Set B - Ideas about U.S. immigration past and present
 Please note that the contemporary examples used on the next page are just a small sample of a large collection of political cartoons available. Please consult other resources on which material you find most appropriate.