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White Ethnic Groups: Assimilation and Identity—The Twilight of Ethnicity. Assimilation and Equality: Should White Ethnic Groups be Considered “Minority Groups”? Industrialization and Immigration European Origins, Conditions of Entry and the Campaign against Immigration

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White Ethnic Groups: Assimilation and Identity—The Twilight of Ethnicity

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White ethnic groups assimilation and identity the twilight of ethnicity l.jpg

White Ethnic Groups: Assimilation and Identity—The Twilight of Ethnicity

  • Assimilation and Equality: Should White Ethnic Groups be Considered “Minority Groups”?

  • Industrialization and Immigration

  • European Origins, Conditions of Entry and the Campaign against Immigration

    • Northern and Western Europeans

      • Emigrants from Norway

      • Emigrants from Germany

      • A Successful Assimilation

  • Emigrant Laborers from Ireland and Southern and Eastern Europe

    • Gender

    • Ethnic and Religious Prejudice

    • Upward Mobility

  • Eastern European Jewish Immigrants and the Ethnic Enclave

    • The Enclave and Upward Mobility

    • Anti-Semitism

  • The Campaign Against Immigration

  • Developments in the 20th Century: Mobility and Integration

    • Degree of Similarity

    • Ethnic Succession

    • Secondary Structural Assimilation

    • Labor Unions

    • The Catholic Church

    • Other Pathways of Mobility


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    Percent of Irish Arriving in the United States, 1820-1850

    Source: Reports of the Immigration Commission, Statistical Review of Immigration 1820-1910, Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1911.


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    Why did the Irish come to the US?

    • Push and Pull

      • Famine Emigration

      • Economic Opportunities

    • Chain Migration

      • Family already here

      • Communities of Irish ready to accept them


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    Population of Washington, D.C., 1800-1850Source: United States Census, 1800-1850


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    What was Washington, DC Like?

    • Southern town

    • Slave town

    • Immigrant town

    • Caste system

    • Part of the first Catholic Diocese in the US


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    Acceptance and Assimilation

    • Not always accepted by locals

    • Blamed for social and medical ills

    • Considered ape-like and ignorant

    • Even educated and skilled found menial jobs upon arrival


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    Irish Immigrants by Ward, Washington,D.C., 1850-1880Source: USMC and Published Census Materials, 1850-1880.


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    Geographic Mobility

    • Initially the Irish lived together in primarily poor neighborhoods

    • Some ghettoized neighborhoods

    • Lived alongside other impoverished minority groups


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    Female Population in Washington, DC 1850-1880Source: USMC and Published Census Materials, 1850-1880


    Slide10 l.jpg

    Irish and Foreign Women in Washington, D.C., 1850-1880Source: USMC and Published Census Materials, 1850-1880


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    Issues of Gender

    • Even though the African American and slave women outnumbered Irish women, they were still hired alongside them in homes and public institutions

    • Still better to see the appearance of white upfront in the businesses

    • Although not an industrial town, opportunity structures of hotels and boarding houses uniquely suited Irish women


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    Marital Status of Irish Women Over Fifteen Years of Age, Washington, D.C., 1850-1880Source: USMC, 1850-1880


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    Social Mobility

    • Irish women quickly adapted to their new home and found husbands.

    • Marriage, as part of assimilation for women, has not changed.

    • This is still the primary means of assimilation.

    • Married primarily Irish and 2nd generation Irish men


    Slide14 l.jpg

    Birthplace of Men who Married Irish Women, 1850-1889Source: USMC, 1850, 1860, 1870 and 1880; and Annual Report of the Board of Health of the District of Columbia, 1872-1876, Government Printing Office: Washington, D.C., 1877; Report of the Health Officer of the District of Columbia, 1878-1890, Government Printing Office: Washington, D.C., 1891; Marriage Records of St. Peter’s Catholic Church, 1850-1871, St. Peter’s Catholic Church, Washington, D.C.; Marriage Records of Holy Trinity Catholic Church, 1850-1871, Trinity Archives, Georgetown University Archives, Georgetown University, Washington, D.C.; Marriage Records of St. Aloysius Catholic Church, 1871-1902, St. Aloysius' Catholic Church Archives, St. Aloysius Catholic Church, Washington, D.C.; District of Columbia Marriage Records Index, District of Columbia Marriage Records and Sampling of District of Columbia Marriage Certificates, District of Columbia Archives, Washington, D.C.


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    How did they get there? The Catholic Church

    • St. Vincent’s Orphan Asylum

    • Bona Mors Society

    • Private school education

    • Vocational Training to Wife Training

    • Benevolent Associations


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