Elda Remembers The Eye Exam

 

Elda Remembers The Eye Exam (Transcript)

Interviewee: Elda Del Bino Willitts
Date of Birth: April 28, 1911
Date of Interview: November 9, 1990
Interviewer: Paul E. Sigrist, Jr.
Immigrated from Lucca, Italy at Age 5 in 1916
Ellis Island Collection: EI-8

When I got on the boat, I was only five and this little, this gentleman who had been back and forth several times, and well my mother took a liking to him because he was so knowledgeable about it. He spoke Italian. And so he took me on a walk one day and he said, "You know what? When you get over to Ellis Island they're going to be examining your eyes with a hook," and he says, "Don't let them do it because you know what? They did it to me one eye fell in my pocket. (Paul laughs) So you can imagine how I entered this...So we get over there and everybody has to pass and I'm on the floor screaming. I passed without a physical. I passed the eye test because the other seven passed.

Last updated: December 1, 2017

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

Ellis Island National Museum of Immigration
Statue of Liberty National Monument

New York, NY 10004

Phone:

(212) 363-3200

Contact Us