Dec. 11, 2021

Immigration & The Steerage Act of 1819

Immigration & The Steerage Act of 1819

Immigration policy in the United States is a hotly debated and discussed topic.

However, as the country who proudly professes to be a nation of immigrants, just how did U.S. Immigration policy develop?

This week, I start discussing the evolution go immigration policy in the United States with the passage and impact of the Steerage Act of 1819.


“An Act Regulating Passenger Ships and Vessels.” Annals of Congress. House of Representatives, 15th Congress, 2nd Session. Washington. 1819, pg 488-489. From Library of Congress, A Century of Lawmaking for a New Nation: U.S. Congressional Documents and Debates, 1774 - 1875. (LINK) Accessed November 10, 2021.

Budiman, Abby. Key Findings About US Immigrants. Pew Research Center. August 20, 2020. (LINK). Accessed November 11, 2021.  

Ewing, Walter. “Opportunity and Exclusion: A Brief History of U.S. Immigration Policy.” American Immigration Council. January 13, 2012. (LINK) Editors. “U.S. Immigration Timeline.” History. Updated April 20, 2021. (LINK)

“Immigration Timeline.” The Statue of Liberty - Ellis Island Foundation. (LINK)

Roos, David. “America’s First Immigration Law Tried (And Failed) to Deal With Nightmarish Sea Journeys.” History. March 1, 2019. (LINK)

United States Immigration Commission and William Paul Dillingham. Federal immigration legislation. Digest of immigration decisions. Steerage legislation, 1819-1908. State Immigration and alien law. U.S. Government Printing Office: 1911. EBook. (LINK)

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