Discovering Immigrant Ancestors

In this Sassy Jane Guide you’ll find 25 pages of direct links for 19th- and 20th-century immigration records through all U.S. ports. Links to naturalization records and little-known resources for immigrant ancestors are also included.

In addition, learn what the journey to the New World was like from the time immigrant ancestors left their homes and journeyed to America’s “front doors to freedom” at the Customs House, Castle Garden, or Ellis Island.

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In the first four chapters of Discovering Immigrant Ancestors, you’ll learn how ancestors made the decision to leave Europe, and what it was like to journey to America and pass through immigration inspections to start new lives in America. Chapter 5 contains 25 pages of active links for essential and little-known resources on immigration and naturalization.

Using resources of the National ArchivesLibrary of Congress, academic archives, and genealogy records, Discovering Immigrant Ancestors covers the complete immigration experience of your ancestors, with resources that will advance your family history research.

Even if your ancestors arrived at North American ports other than New York, this Sassy Jane Genealogy Guide provides insight into the immigrant experience, and active links to immigration records that can focus your research.

Discovering Immigrant Ancestors is an illustrated 77-page color PDF available for $4.99. An iBooks format for your iPad is also available upon request. There are five chapters and three appendices in this book:

  • Leaving the Old World

  • Voyaging to the New World

  • Staying in America

  • Finding Migration Records

  • Appendix A: Sassy Jane Guides

  • Appendix B. Bibliography

  • Appendix C: Immigrant Accounts

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Table of Contents

  1. Chapter 1: Leaving the Old World
    • Waves of Immigration
    • 1820–1860: Second Wave of Immigration
    • 1180–1920: Third Wave of Immigration
    • Why Did Immigrants Leave For America?
  2. Chapter 2: Voyaging to the New World
    • Beginning the Journey
    • Departure in Steerage
    • What Did Steerage Fare Cost?
    • What Did Steerage Fare Buy?
    • Firsthand Accounts of Steerage
  3. Chapter 3: Arriving in New York
    • U.S. Customs House, 1820–1855
    • Castle Garden, 1855–1890
    • Barge Office, 1890-91; 1897–1900
    • Ellis Island, 1892-97; 1900–1954
    • Disembarking
    • Baggage Room
    • Waiting
    • Medical Examinations
    • Registry Room
    • Legal Inspection
    • Entering The Country
  4. Chapter 4: Staying in America
    • One-third Stayed in New York
    • Two-thirds Left For Other Parts of the Country
    • Where Did They Settle?
  5. Chapter 5: Finding Migration Records
    • Before You Search
    • New York Passenger Arrival Lists
    • Departure Passenger Lists
    • Resources By Nationality/Ethnicity
    • Permission To Emigrate
    • Passport Applications
    • Emigrant Aid Societies
    • Medical Records
    • Naturalization & Alien Records
  6. Appendices
    • Sassy Jane Genealogy Guides
    • Bibliography
    • Immigrant Accounts