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

    Ellis Island

    Part of Statue of Liberty National Monument NJ,NY

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  • Ellis Island is open on a limited basis while repairs continue.

    Ellis Island has reopened on a limited basis. Due to the nature of the destruction caused by Hurricane Sandy, parts of the historic Main Building and museum remain closed at this time. The museum's artifacts remain in off-site storage. More »

The "Peopling of America" exhibit

Immigrants Standing in the Railroad Ticketing Office
Ellis Island Railroad Ticketing Office 1902-1913
New York Public Library - Public Domain
Peopling of America exhibits

Exhibit panels in the new Peopling of America exhibit

nps photo - v. scott

Phase 1 of the updated "Journeys: The Peopling of America" exhibit opened in late October 2011. This exhibit, occupying the former "Railroad Ticketing Office" on the first floor of Ellis Island's Main Building, explores immigration to this land from the 17th century to 1892, when Ellis Island opened as America's first federal immigration station. Themes such as "Leaving", "Struggle and Survival", and "Building A Nation" are touched upon in graphic panels and through first-person stories.

The second phase of this expanded exhibit, scheduled to open in 2013, will discuss immigration after Ellis' closure in 1954, and bring this story up to the present day.

Did You Know?

Ellis Island main building

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.