This page has information and links to information related to history. See Biographical Research for history of individual people. For specific time periods, places/areas, and/or topics see left-hand side for topics.

Introduction Immigration, Race, & Citizenship

This page has information on the United States immigration policy primarily from the years 1880-1965. Resources that discuss citizenship, race, and policies are included. Like most complicated topics, this page is not comprehensive. However, it has starting points that should be useful to the researcher.


Before doing research on a topic it is important to have definitions of terms and a background or overview of the topic. See these (and other related topics--links to entire reference work is provided, when applicable) sources for definitions and context. When provided, bibliographies are valuable resources for identifying additional materials.

*African Americans; American Muslims; Americans; Amish; Arab Americans; Armenian Americans; Asian Indian Americans; Cajuns; Cambodian Americans; Central Americans in the US; Chinese Americans; Creoles of Louisiana; Cuban Americans; Dominican Americans; Dutch Americans; English Americans; Filipino Americans; French Americans; German Americans; Greek Americans; Haitian Americans; Hmong Americans; Hungarian Americans; Irish Americans; Italian Americans; Japanese Americans; Jewish Americans; Korean Americans; Laotian Americans; Lebanese Americans; Mexican Americans; Norwegian Americans; Polish Americans; Puerto Rican Americans; Russian Americans; Scottish and Scotch-Irish Americans; Sudanese Americans; Swedish Americans; Ukrainian Americans; Vietnamese Americans.

Reference & Circulating Books

Reference materials are an excellent way to find background information. This enables researchers to get an overall picture of the topic and learn names, dates, events, and other details that will help with more specific research needs. Items are in Reference, Morgan, and online (some only to CSU affiliates).

  • All Hell Broke Loose: American Race Riots from the Progressive Era through World War II. 2012. AHBLARRPEWWonline
  • Anti-Immigration in the United States: A Historical Encyclopedia. JV6450 .A67 2011 Morgan
  • Anti-Racism in U.S. History: The First Two Hundred Years. E185.61 .A62 1993 Morgan
  • Atlas of the Historical Geography of the United States. Animated. Digital Scholarship Lab, University of Richmond (Charles O. Paullin and John K. Wright). Look under Population to find "Sources of Emigration to the United States" divided by years: 1831-1840, 1841-1850, 1851-1860, 1861-1870, 1871-1880, 1881-1890, 1891-1900, 1901-1910, 1911-1920, 1921-1929 (some ranges are animated). Also find "Foreign-Born Population 1860, 1880, 1900, 1930. Specific information for Foreign-Born German, Irish, Swedish, and Norwegian populations in years 1880, 1900, and 1930.
  • The Debate in the United States Over Immigration. JV6483 .D42 1998 Morgan
  • Debating American Immigration, 1882-Present. JV6483 .D35 2001 Morgan
  • Defining America through Immigration Policy. JV6483 .H56 2004 Morgan
  • Discoveries of America : Personal Accounts of British Emigrants to North America during the Revolutionary Era. E184.B7 D57 1997 Morgan
  • Encyclopedia of American Immigration. 4 vols. JV6465 .E53 2001 Reference
  • Encyclopedia of Diasporas Immigrant and Refugee Cultures around the World. EDIRCWonline (CSU affiliates) and JV6225 .E63 2004 Morgan
  • Encyclopedia of Ellis Island. JV6484 .M67 2004 Morgan
  • Encyclopedia of Immigration and Migration in the American West.  HB1965 .E53 2006 Reference
  • Encyclopedia of Immigrant Health. EIHonline (CSU affiliates)
  • Encyclopedia of North American Immigration. JV6465 .P68 2005 Reference
  • From Italy to San Francisco: The Immigrant Experience. F869.S39 I82 1982 Storage and FISFTIEebook
  • Gale Virtual Reference Library. Online GVRL (CSU affiliates)
  • How Race Is Made in America: Immigration, Citizenship, and the Historical Power of Racial Scripts. 2014. HRIMAonline (CSU affiliates)
  • Immigrant Women. HQ1412 .I45 1994 Morgan and IWonline (CSU affiliates)
  • Immigration in America Today: An Encyclopedia. JV6465 .I4754 2006 Morgan
  • Immigration in U.S. History. 2 vols. JV6450 .I565 2006 Morgan
  • Impossible Subjects : Illegal Aliens and the Making of Modern America. 2004. ISIAMMAonline (CSU affiliates)
  • The Making of Modern Immigration: An Encyclopedia of People and Ideas. MMIEPIonline (CSU affiliates)
  • National Insecurities: Immigrants and U.S. Deportation Policy since 1882.  2012. NIIUSDPonlne (CSU affiliates)
  • Race in North America Origin and Evolution of a Worldview. 4th ed. 2011 RNAOEWonline (CSU affiliates)
  • Race Relations in the United States, 1900-1920. E184.A1 M148 2009 Morgan
  • Race Relations in the United States, 1920-1940. E184.A1 T585 2008 Morgan
  • Race Relations in the United States, 1940-1960. E184.A1 D284 2008 Morgan
  • Reports of the Immigration Commission. United States. Immigration Commission (1907-1910) [William P Dillingham. GPO] 1911. Y 3.IM 6:2 IM 6 Documents
  • Unequal Freedom: How Race and Gender Shaped American Citizenship and Labor. HN90.S6 G554 2002 Morgan
  • U.S. Immigration Policy and the National Interest : Staff Report of the Select Commission on Immigration and Refugee Policy, April 30, 1981. Y 3.IM 6/2:2 IM 6/APP. A-I Documents
  • We Are Americans: Voices of the Immigrant Experience. JV6455 .H66 2003 Morgan & Curriculum
  • We Who Built America: The Saga of the Immigrant. JV6455 .W55 1967 Morgan

Please note: just because a title is on this list does not mean it is authoritative or completely accurate. Always look at more than one resource on a topic (minimum of three) and evaluate all items (books, articles, Web pages, and films) before you use them in your research.

Population--Foreign Born and Native Born. Statistics. Figures.

Information about the population is going to be essential for this topic. Without statistics on the number of people immigrating it would be difficult to describe events or have a perspective on perceived problems or advantages of these populations.

--> Note: the library catalog likes to pause dramatically for effect, so it can take more than just a few seconds (and page flickers with moving black diamonds) for the pages with the links to the resources to appear.

Profile of the Foreign-Born Population in the United States: 2000. U.S. Dept. of Commerce, Economics and Statistics Administration, U.S. Census Bureau, 2001. PDF.

Excellent summary of information. Charts and tables. A lot of detail. A must-look at resource for this topic.

Historical Census Statistics on the Foreign-born Population of the United States: 1850-1990. Campbell J. Gibson and Emily Lennon. Population Division. U.S. Bureau of the Census. February 1999. Working Paper.

"This working paper presents selected decennial census data on the foreign-born population of the United States from 1850 to 1990. This paper updates and expands data on the foreign-born population published in 1975 in Historical Statistics of the United States, Colonial Times to 1970."

Historical Census Statistics on the Foreign-Born Population of the United States, 1850 to 2000. Working Paper No. 6. United States. Bureau of the Census. Population Division, 2006. 119 pages. PDF.

Good overview with numbers of people and languages spoken. General Reference list is worth using for additional sources (page 25-30 of the PDF; pages 20-25 of the document). Find places of birth, documented every ten years, on Table 1 from 1850-2000. Other tables identify foreign born by region and more.

Find additional resources (most of them governmental) by doing a subject search in the library catalog (BOOKS & MORE) for:

Immigrants -- United States -- Statistics [There are 41 items, that depending upon the subtopic, may be just what is needed.]

See also U.S. Census guide section of CSU's Government Information site.

Primary Sources in Library Databases and on the Web

These resources all have primary sources. Some may have descriptions, or secondary sources. In this historical context, newspaper articles are considered "primary" albeit "contemporary" is a more accurate term. Note that just because it is in the newspaper does not mean that it is historically or factually accurate. Be sure to cross-reference any tidbits whenever possible.

American State Papers. 1789-1838. (CSU affiliates only.)

Materials cover the earliest years of the country. Items under immigrants, refuges, and slave trade (1st Congress, Second Session, No. 13: Abolition of slavery, March 5, 1790) might have useful perspectives, but all are pre-1839.

Archives of Sexuality & Gender: LGBTQ History and Culture Since 1940 Parts 1 & 2. Gale.

A search for "immigrant" finds Monographs (2), manuscripts (51), and newspaper & periodicals (588). "Immigration" finds 8 monographs, 445 manuscripts, 5125 newspaper & periodicals, and 3 photographs. Other terms (combine with narrower topics) include: Emigration and immigration; immigration law; lesbians; gays; United States Immigration and Naturalization Service; Immigration policy; labor law.

Chronicling America. Chronicling America's Newspapers.

Historic newspaper pages from 1789-1949.

Civil Rights Digital Library. © 2009 Digital Library of Georgia. University of Georgia. 

Search by: Events (1954-1968), Places (displays interactive map), People (listed A-Z), and Topics. Actual documents are often linked to other sites; specific events, etc. have an introduction. Items include letters, photographs, editorial cartoons, oral histories, and many other media types. Also search by collection name. Site includes secondary sources (such as the educator resources and the introductions).

The Civil Rights Movement. Oral Histories of the American South. Documenting the American South (linked to above). © Copyright 2004 by the University Library, The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, all rights reserved. 

"This collection of interviews seeks to make this massive movement local and understandable by reducing it into its smallest parts—the people that participated, in small and large ways. These people were former slaves who taught their children the value of education, or high school principals who insisted on punctuality. Drawing together interviews from a variety of Southern Oral History Program collections, this cluster includes interviews with students and teachers at West Charlotte High School in Charlotte, North Carolina." Interviews available in HTML (transcript), audio with transcript (Requires QuickTime and JavaScript), and audio only (MP3).  See also the Topic: Civil Rights section of the History: African American LibGuide at the University of Washington (scroll down to see; the page also has links to information about slavery). There are a number of links to sources of information on civil rights--run your cursor over the links to see a brief annotation.

Colorado Historic Newspaper Collection. 1859-1922.

Colorado newspapers full text online.

Congressional Publications. CSU affiliates only.

While this resources includes items outside of the page time frame, it does have materials produced between 1880 and 1965. Find: Committee Prints & Misc. Publications 1789-Present; Congressional Record Bound Edition & Predecessors 1789-1997; Hearings 1824-Present; House & Senate Documents 1789-Present; and House & Senate Reports 1789-Present.

Documenting the American South. © Copyright 2004 by the University Library, The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. 

Site is "a digital publishing initiative that provides Internet access to texts, images, and audio files related to southern history, literature, and culture. Currently DocSouth includes fourteen thematic collections of books, diaries, posters, artifacts, letters, oral history interviews, and songs." Primary resources.

Early U.S. History. 19th Century Newspapers.

Arranged by: National & Regional Newspapers/Journals; Georgia Newspapers at Digital Library of Georgia; and Other Southern Newspapers/Journals (by state).

The Gilded Age. Alexander Street Press. CSU affiliates only. 

The Gilded Age covers topics that include "[i]mmigration and migration, racism and civil rights, labor and industry, women and universal suffrage, American Indians, and the environment." The collection contains "40,000 pages of full text, photographs, songs for listening online, and other primary materials, along with video interviews and twenty-five critical documentary essays. Each documentary essay poses an interpretive question and then illuminates it with dozens of annotated primary documents, introductions, and essays." Items in this database range from primary sources that were created in 1865 to contemporary (as in 2007) scholarship.

Government Information (Documents). Naomi Lederer CSU Libraries.

Arranged by core titles, federal agencies, federal topics, Colorado government, local city/county, other government access points, datasets, international government information, and more. Many sites will focus on current, not historical, information.

Legislative Insight . 1953- .

Full text of publications supporting bills in Congress. As of early February 2018 there are over 700 entries for immigration; 425 of these have immigration as a subject. Another term that is used is aliens. A timeline browse shows immigration topics from 1882 to 2006. Oldest with immigration as a subject is from 1927. 127 is from 1965; the others are outside of the time frame of this page, but might very well used earlier legislation to shape their choices.

Making of America [Cornell]. Cornell University Library.

"The Cornell University Library Making of America Collection is a digital library of primary sources in American social history from the antebellum period through reconstruction. The collection is particularly strong in the subject areas of education, psychology, American history, sociology, religion, and science and technology. This site provides access to 267 monograph volumes and over 100,000 journal articles with 19th century imprints." Search all, or search/browse by journal, monograph, or Civil War document. As of January 2018 over 907,000 pages.

Making of America [Michigan]. University of Michigan.

"Making of America (MoA) is a digital library of primary sources in American social history from the antebellum period through reconstruction. The collection is particularly strong in the subject areas of education, psychology, American history, sociology, religion, and science and technology. The collection currently contains approximately 10,000 books and 50,000 journal articles with 19th century imprints." There are "primary sources related to development of the U.S. infrastructure. . . . imprints primarily between 1850 - 1877."

Minnesota's Immigrants. Minnesota Digital Library.

Digital oral histories from immigrants. Refine by world region, destination, and more.

National Archives and Records Administration.  Includes copies of various primary and secondary sources along with contextual information (some sources found on linked to pages).

Of interest are documents regarding Immigration Records (Ship Passenger Arrival Records); Chinese Immigration and the Chinese in the United States; Records of the Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS), 1891-1957; American Immigration Laws Timeline (PDF); Clues in Census Records, 1850-1930; and Microfilm Publications and Original Records Digitized by Our Digitization Partners.

North American Immigrant Letters, Diaries and Oral Histories. (CSU affiliates only.)

This resource has "2,162 authors and approximately 100,000 pages of information" that can be browsed or searched. Browse by authors, sources, years, places (533 in Canada, 1627 in United States), nationality and cultural heritage (1 to 6341 documents; about 25 of these have single-digit entries, 23 double-digit, 21 triple digits, and European, Jewish, and English have quadruple digits), personal events, etc.

North American Women's Letters and Diaries. 1675-1950.

1,325 women and 150,000 pages of diaries and letters.

United States Congressional Serial Set. 1817-1994. (CSU affiliates only.)

An initial keyword in All Text search for immigration brings up over 28,000 results (by subject just over 1480; by subject relevancy should improve). By subject term (Subjects), immigrants brings up over 13,700 results; illegal aliens over 550; ports of entry over 820; border security over 50; naturalization over 1660; citizenship over 1400; deportation over 1550; refugees over 520; resettlement over 55; repatriation over 95; emigration over 235; allegiance over 1120. There are other terms--do not be limited by this selection--and combine terms when relevant. For example, a search for population (by subject) and immigrants finds over 270 items. Searching both by subject brings up just over 35 results, including Emigration and immigration. Reports of the consular officers of the United States. 49th Congress, 2nd Session. February 11, 1887. This report includes skilled labor, and general emigration from Europe and immigration into other parts of North America (Canada, Mexico), Central America, South America, West Indies, and Australia.

Other specific entry:

Loss of United States Citizenship in Certain Cases. April 20 (calendar day, May 2), 1938. April 20, 1938. 75th Congress, 3rd Session Serial Set Vol. No. 10229, Session Vol. No.1.

US Immigration. Subset of Internet Modern History Sourcebook. Fordham University.

Divided into sections: US Immigration and Its Effects; European Immigration;     Asian Immigration; Latin American Immigration; Ellis Island and New York; and Opposition to Immigration. Some content on site, but most is linked to off site locations, indicated by "[At ____]." See other potential sections of interest in the Sourcebook on left-hand side of the page.

Veteran’s History Project. Library of Congress. 

Oral histories of veterans. Some material (transcripts, videos) is available online. Check Digitized Collection box in order to find these. If you know specifics, you can search them: name of veteran/civilian, service location, service unit/ship, highest rank, etc. Search by conflict or era (World War I, World War II, Korean War, Vietnam War, Persian Gulf War, Afghanistan and Iraq Wars, and/or Other); limit by branch of service (Air Force, Army, Army Air Forces/Corps, Coast Guard, Marine Corps, Merchant Marine, Navy, Civilian, Other Branches); indicate whether or not prisoner of war, gender, digitized collection, and/or transcript.

Older Eras (pre 1880)

AAS Historical Periodicals Collection. Series 1. 1691-1820. AAS Historical Periodicals Collection. Series 2. 1821-1837. AAS Historical Periodicals Collection. Series 3. 1838-1852. AAS Historical Periodicals Collection. Series 4. 1853-1865. AAS Historical Periodicals Collection. Series 5. 1866-1877. American Antiquarian Society. CSU affiliates only.

Digital access to a highly comprehensive collection of American periodicals. Divided by years. May be searched simultaneously. Covers advertising, health, women's issues, science, the history of slavery, industry and professions, religious issues, culture and the arts, and more.

Early American Imprints (Evans).  1639-1800 and Early American Imprints Supplement 1670-1800. Readex. CSU affiliates only.

Books, pamphlets, broadsides, and other imprints.


Books are a key resource for information about U.S. immigration. The subject headings listed in this section can be used to find books related to this topic in any library catalog which uses Library of Congress Subject Headings, including CSU's library catalog (it is not an exhaustive list). Do a subject search using the terms below to identify books in the catalog and Prospector (the Colorado Regional Catalog). Books may be requested from Prospector by CSU affiliates. Be sure to look at subdivisions for the terms below--not every possibility is listed here. For example, The Emigration and Immigration has multiple subdivisions listed here, but it is still not comprehensive! Emigration and Immigration is the term for both entering and leaving a country. Remove the bullet or the search will not work.

  • Citizenship -- United States -- History
  • Ellis Island Immigration Station (N.Y. and N.J.)
  • Emigration And Immigration
  • Emigration And Immigration Africa; America History; Arab Countries; Argentina; Asia; Australia; Australia History; Canada; Canada History; Caribbean Area; China; China History; Congresses; Developing Countries; Economic Aspects; England; Europe; Europe Government Policy; European Union Countries; Former Soviet Republics; France; Germany; Government Policy; Great Britain; Great Britain History Sources; History; India; Ireland; Ireland History; Israel; Italy; Jamaica; Japan; Law [many specific countries]; Law United States; Lebanon History; London England; Mexico; Mexico History; Netherlands; Palestine; Philippines; Poland History 20th Century; Psychological Aspects; Puerto Rico; Research; Russia Federation; Scotland; Scotland History; Social Aspects; South Asia; Soviet Union; Spain; Uganda; United States History; United States History 19th Century; United States History 20th Century; United States Social Aspects; United States Statistics; Uganda; United States History; United States History 19th Century; United States History 20th Century; United States Social Aspects; United States Statistics; West Indies
  • Emigration and immigration law -- United States
  • Immigrants [multiple subdivisions]
  • Immigrants -- United States -- Statistics
  • United States -- Emigration and immigration
  • United States -- Emigration and immigration -- Government policy
  • United States -- Emigration and immigration -- Government policy -- History
  • United States -- Race relations
  • United States -- Race relations -- History -- 19th century
  • United States -- Race relations -- History -- 20th century
  • Women Immigrants

Images--Photographs, etc.

Images can be a valuable primary source when researching immigrants.

Indexes (Identify Journal Articles)

Use indexes to identify articles of interest. Be sure to make use of their bibliographies, works cited, and references for additional resources that will help with research on any topic.

Indexes, Print

  • Readers’ Guide to Periodical Literature. AI 3 .R48 Reference 1900-
  • Humanities Index. AI 3 .I495 Reference 1974-1998
  • International Index to Periodicals. AI 3 .I49 Reference 1920/1923-1952/1955
  • International Index. AI 3 .I49 Reference 1955/1958-1964/1965
  • International Political Science Abstracts. JA 36 .I5 Reference 1951-2006
  • London Times Index (various titles: Palmer's, etc.) AI 21 T51 & AI21 .T46 Reference & others nearby 1785- ; the newspaper itself is on microfilm in the Journal Room, call number AN .T5 (current issues in print in newspaper area); also available online in Times Digital Archive 1785-2008 via Gale News Vault
  • Nineteenth Century Readers' Guide to Periodical Literature, 1890-1899; with supplementary indexing, 1900-1922. AI3 .R496 Reference
  • Poole's Index to Periodical Literature. AI3 .P6 Reference 1802-1901
  • Social Sciences Index. AI 3 .I496 Reference 1974/75-1998/99

Indexes/Databases, Electronic

These indexes may also be accessed by CSU affiliates via the "A-Z Database List" pages. See Truncation and Proximity Operators for advanced searching methods for these and other databases.

Academic Search Premier. Varies. 

General database with broad coverage. Terms that work include: Emigration & immigration; Immigrants; Cultural pluralism.

America: History & Life. 1954- . 

  • Historical coverage of the United States and Canada. Latin America appears as well. Some terms: United States -- Emigration & immigration -- History; United States -- Emigration & immigration -- Government policy; United States; Emigration & immigration -- Economic aspects; Immigrants -- United States; Social integration; History of race relations in the United States; Racialization; Citizenship -- United States -- History

Ethnic NewsWatch. 1959- .

  • Search for immigrants brings up over 130,000 results.

Family & Society Worldwide. 1970- . 

  • Subject terms that work in this database include: Immigrants; Emigration & immigration; Emigration & immigration law; immigration opponents; immigration enforcement; emigration & immigration government policy; cultural pluralism; immigrant families.

Historical Abstracts. 1954- . 

Covers events of 1450 to the present. Subjects: Immigrants -- United States; Emigration & immigration -- Government policy; Assimilation (Sociology); Immigrants -- [Country]; United States -- Emigration & immigration

JSTOR. Full text articles that for the most part are at least 3-5 years old (varies by journal). 

Full text or linked to full text for more recent articles (most of them). Contemporary vocabulary is vital for success.

New York Times 1851- .

Contemporary vocabulary is vital for success.

Nineteenth Century Masterfile. Online (Paratext)

We have very few of these items readily available, so plan ahead so you can use InterLibrary Loan when needed. There are many duplicate entries; make sure you do not request the same article twice because multiple articles from the same source (journal/magazine/newspaper) costs the Library additional money to acquire (i.e. individual articles become more expensive the more you request from the same source). Keep in mind that you are searching predominantly 19th century (1800-1899) material; there are a few early 20th century items, but don't expect to find them. You might also check Google Books for older (pre-1923) journals to see if the entire issue is available. Then look within for your specific article(s).

Nineteenth Century U.S. Newspapers. Online (Gale NewsVault with London Times). Full text of newspapers.

Same search interface and will often search at the same time the Times Digital Archive. Contemporary vocabulary is vital for success.

PAIS International. 1915- . 

Search for articles, books, statistical directories, government documents, and more. Terms to search include:  Immigrants; Residential mobility; Immigration policy; Transnationalism; International law; Citizenship.

Project Muse. Varies.  Full text articles (view in PDF).

PsycINFO. Varies.

Subjects: immigration; intergroup dynamics, Racial and Ethnic Attitudes, Government Policy Making

Sociological Abstracts

Over 1,000 results for immigration as a subject. Other subjects: immigration policy (over 17,000 results), immigrants (over 20,000), citizenship (over 11,000), United States of America.

Sunday Times Digital Archive, 1822-2006. Online (The Sunday Times [Gale]).  Sunday paper from London.

Contemporary vocabulary is going to be vital for success. Over 224,000 results contain the word "travel." Over 37,000 of these are feature articles, over 17,000 news.

Times Digital Archive. London Times 1785-2008. Also listed above. 

Get the British perspective on topics. Only has week days. Sunday Times now also available (different publication). Same search interface and will often search at the same time the Nineteenth Century U.S. Newspapers database. Contemporary vocabulary is vital for success.

See also:

WorldCat. Identifies books, archival materials, etc., but not articles. (Subject terms should match those listed under Books. The library catalog, Prospector, and Interlibrary Loan requests can be made directly from WorldCat via the  button)

Web of Science. (Arts & Humanities Citation Index)

Web: Immigration & the United States (& elsewhere)

Aspiration, Acculturation, and Impact: Immigration to the United States, 1789-1930. Harvard University Library. 

Documents voluntary immigration to the United States. Many 19th century items. Over 400,000 pages. Over 7800 photographs. Provides contextual (secondary) information. Navigate using the left side menu.

Border Patrol History. U.S. Customs and Border Protection. Department of Homeland Security.

Overview of the U.S. border patrol (founded 1924) and its history before and since, starting with 1904.

Chinese Immigration and the Chinese in the United States. National Archives.

Historical overview of United States immigration policy regarding Chinese immigrants.

Immigration. Library of Congress.

Stories about various ethnic groups. Navigate via the left-hand side to choose, and then page by page within the frame. "This feature presentation links educators to primary sources from the Library of Congress' online collections."

Immigration Challenges for New Americans: Primary Source Set. Library of Congress.  Twenty-one images.

Suggestion: do searches in the locations of the images for additional material.

Immigration to the United States, 1789-1930. (Aspiration, Acculturation, and Impact). Harvard University Library.

Divided by: the Immigrant Diaspora, New Lives, and Restricting Immigration. This site 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."

INS History. U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.

This has useful summaries of U.S. immigration policies. Beginning with Early American Immigration Policies, go page by page (or click on INS History PDF to get entire document at once) to see: Origins of the Federal Immigration Service; Origins of the Federal Naturalization Service; Mass Immigration and WWI; Era of Restriction; World War II; Post-War Years; Late Twentieth Century; and Post-9/11.

Refugee Timeline: Immigration and Naturalization Service Refugee Law and Policy Timeline, 1891-2003. U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.

Starts with the establishment of the Bureau of Immigration to the split of the Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) into three separate organizations: U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), U.S. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE), and U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP). See also descriptions of other resources (many not available online) on the USCIS History and Genealogy page.

The Sidney Heitman Germans From Russia Collection. CSU Libraries Archives. 

"The collection documents early migration to Colorado settlements, religious and family matters, occupations, and social mobility. There is considerable material on the early sugar beet industry and the role of the Germans from Russia in its early growth, plus a general view of the history of Colorado from the perspective of this ethnic group."

US Immigration. Internet Modern History Sourcebook. Paul Halsall. Fordham University. 

Contents of the page include: US Immigration and Its Effects; European Immigration (General, British, German, Irish, Italian, and Jewish); Asian Immigration; Latin American Immigration; Ellis Island and New York; and Opposition to Immigration.

Other Web

Immigration. Guide. Records. National Archives. Great Britain. 

Guide to records in the archives of interest to the topic of immigration. Covers "information about how to trace foreigners coming to live in Britain in the last 600 years." Multiple (over ten) categories of sources.

Articles on the Topic of Immigration & the United States

Here are some articles, essays, and speeches on topics related to immigration and the United States in the time frame of interest. Some items are available to CSU affiliates only.

More Recent History

Genealogy (not really an academic library pursuit)

The Poudre River Library District (PRLD) has a number of materials in print (local history) and online to assist with genealogical research.  They have a Family History Genealogy research page. Your CSU Ram card can be configured (may take up to 24 hours to be processed) to access selected PRLD databases (some must be searched on site in the public library building). They have a collection of Genealogy and History Databases.

PRLD has (selected list):

  • Ancestry® Library Edition. Billions of records in census data, vital records, directories, photos, and more. NOTE: This must be used on site.
  • HeritageQuest. Family histories, genealogical serials, local history, and primary sources.
  • My Heritage Library Edition. Billions of historical documents, millions of historical photos, and other resources that span the past five centuries.
  • NEHGS American Ancestors. Records for New England, New York and beyond. Contains vital records (births, deaths, marriages) by state and locality for selected time periods. There are church records, probate records, and histories of individual families, as well as cemetery and burial records, local histories, court records and land records. NOTE: Available only at the Old Town Library.
  • Select Families of New Mexico. This genealogical database contains over 500,000 individuals mainly of Spanish and Native American heritage. It was compiled by Ladeane Miller. NOTE: This must be used on site.

Now, there are resources at CSU that can be used to assist with genealogical research, but they are academic and government resources that are used to find biographical information, not family trees or charts or histories. See Biographical Research for ways to research personal histories.

Example of government resources that list names are:

Historical Register and Dictionary of the United States Army, from Its Organization, September 29, 1789, to March 2, 1903. W 3.11:1789-1903 Documents

U.S. Army Register. United States. Department of the Army. CSU has 1868, 1872, 1878, 1882-1888, 1890-1893, 1895-1899, 1902-1906, 1908-1916, 1918, 1920-1947, 1951-1969, 1972, 1974, 1976 Storage Docs (request individual volume(s))


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Content: Naomi Lederer

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