Flood Tide of Immigration - 1906
Immigration Office at Ellis Island, Through Which a Million Aliens a Year Enter America. A Unique Perspective as this Photograph is a Side View of the Main Building. It Includes Several of the Out Buildings on the Surrounding Islands. The Search-Light, 28 April 1906. GGA Image ID # 14f24d6d1b
All records of the number of immigrants awaiting admission through Ellis Island, New York, at one time were broken on 16 April. Counting passengers who were discharged, those who had to wait their turn, and those on steamships that arrived at Quarantine before night, 18.028 aliens were in the harbor.
Only 5.233 immigrants, those on the "St. Paul," of the American line; the "Equita" of the Veloce Line; the "Umbria," of the Cunard Line, and the "Celtic," of the White Star line, were landed on 16 April 1906. No, the inspectors could not handle any additional immigrants.
Commissioner Watchorn said he would not pass upon more than approximately 5.000 immigrants in one day. This number of arrivals far exceeds the highest previous number awaiting examination in one day, 11.000, about a month ago.
The agents of the steamship companies were not pleased, because nearly 35,000 more aliens were due on ships scheduled to arrive during the week.
It is feared that there will be considerable congestion, and the steamship agents don't fancy being compelled to feed the steerage passengers any longer than necessary On 16 April, it was estimated that 52,000 immigrants in all would have reached the port by night of the 19th instant.
The arrival of these immigrants has brought up again the question of distribution. The Government, on the strength of reports from the different ports, has held that the tide of immigration needs no longer trouble anyone. Since the distribution is such now that few of the large cities suffer.
The total immigration to the United States from all countries during March. 1906, according to a statement issued by the Immigration Bureau, was 133,245. The report of the distribution shows that nearly every state in the Union, and even the new possessions, got a proportionate number of immigrants. New York State got a massive total of 43.382.
"Flood Tide of Immigration," in The Search-Light: Thrown on the Activities of the World, New York: The Search-Light Publishing Co., New Series: Vol. III, No. 17; Old Series: Vol. XXVII, No. 17, Saturday, 28 April 1906, p. 260.