American Passenger Arrival Records

A Guide to the Records of Immigrants Arriving at American Ports by Sail and Steam. Updated and Enlarged


Author: Tepper, Michael
Publication Date: 1993
Reprint Date: 2001
Pages: 144 pp.


Millions of people made their way to America in the most determined and sustained migration the world has ever known. Initially they left traces of their immigration in scattered records and documents. Later their arrival here was documented so minutely that the records resulting are among the largest, the most continuous and the most uniform in the nation’s archives.

These passenger arrival records identify by name, place of origin, and other particulars the vast majority of persons who participated in the great Atlantic migration. This work examines the records in their historical and legal framework, and it explains what they contain, where they can be found, and how they can be used. In effect, it is a road map through the mass of records and archival resources documenting immigrant arrivals from the time of the earliest settlements to the passage of the Quota Acts three centuries later. This edition features expanded coverage of colonial emigration records, finding aids and reference materials, National Archives microfilm programs and publications, current projects and new developments in immigration research, and more.

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