The restrictive immigration policies enacted in 1921 and 1924 by the United States Congress had strong roots in the period before World War I. This is not a new thesis. But this article transcends the confines of American history and looks at the impact of increasingly restrictive American immigration policies in central Europe since the early 1880s. It describes in detail how German state authorities and private steamship lines constructed an increasingly hermetic transit corridor through Germany, making sure that only persons who would not be rejected by the American immigration inspectors could enter. The well-organized and profitable transit migration system broke down in 1914. The repercussions of the closing American doors forced the Weimar Republic to take a less restrictive line towards foreign aliens than its imperial predecessor, as large numbers of migrants were stranded in permanent transit.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Social Sciences (miscellaneous)