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U.S. Immigration and Ethnicity Research Guide

Use this guide to find UNO library resources and other helpful research tools.

ProQuest History Vault

The ProQuest History Vault includes a database containing scanned and searchable records of the Immigration and Naturalization Service spanning 1880-1930.  Major areas encompass:

  • Mexican Immigration, 1906-1930
  • Ellis Island, 1900-1933
  • European Investigations, 1898-1936
  • Prostitution and White Slavery, 1902-1933
  • Suppression of Aliens, 1906-1930
  • Asian Immigration and Exclusion, 1898-1941

Contemporary population data online

Primary Sources from Harvard University

Immigration to the United States, 1789-1930, is a web-based collection of historical materials from Harvard's libraries, archives, and museums that documents voluntary immigration to the United States from the signing of the Constitution to the onset of the Great Depression. Concentrating heavily on the 19th century, Immigration to the US includes over 400,000 pages from more than 2,200 books, pamphlets, and serials, over 9,600 pages from manuscript and archival collections, and more than 7,800 photographs. By incorporating diaries, biographies, and other writings capturing diverse experiences, the collected material provides a window into the lives of ordinary immigrants.

In addition to thousands of items that are now accessible to any Internet user, the collection includes contextual information on voluntary immigration and quantitative data. The site offers additional links to related digital resources on immigration to the US, including vital materials on the African diaspora.

Primary Sources from the University of Minnesota

The Immigration History Research Center & Archives holds one of the largest collections of primary source materials on immigration and the United States.  Over 100,000 pages of letters, diaries, and oral histories spanning 1800-1950 have been scanned and posted to the Internet.

The online collections encompass a wide range of nationalities:  Armenian, Belarusan, Croatian, Estonian, Finnish, Greek, Hungarian, Italian, Latvian, Polish, Romanian, Slovak, Slovenian, and Ukranian.

Journal of American Ethnic History

The Summer 2014 (volume 33, number 4) issue of the Journal of American Ethnic History  includes several articles that address the use of Internet resources in teaching and research.  You may find them helpful not only for identifying possible sources, but also for providing practical examples of using them effectively.