United States Congress Joint Immigration Commission (est. 1907)

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The United States Immigration Commission was a bipartisan special committee formed in February 1907 by the United States Congress, to study the origins and consequences of recent immigration to the United States. It was a joint committee composed of members of both the House and Senate.[1] It was known as the Dillingham Commission after its chairman, Republican Senator William P. Dillingham of Vermont.

The Commission ended its work in 1911, concluding that immigration from southern and eastern Europe posed a serious threat to American society and culture and should be greatly reduced in the future. The Commission proposed the enactment of a "reading and writing test as the most feasible single method of restricting undesirable immigration" [2]

The Commission's overall findings provided the rationale for sweeping 1920s immigration reduction acts, including the Emergency Quota Act of 1921, which favored immigration from northern and western Europe by restricting the annual number of immigrants from any given country to 3 percent of the total number of people from that country living in the United States in 1910. The movement for immigration restriction that the Dillingham Commission helped to stimulate culminated in the National Origins Formula, part of the Immigration Act of 1924, which capped national immigration at 150,000 annually and completely barred immigration from Asia.[3]

Commission members[edit]

Senators:

Representatives:

Unelected:

Commission reports[edit]

In 1911, the Dillingham Commission issued a 41-volume report containing statistical overviews and other analyses of topics related to immigrant occupations, living conditions, education, legislation (at the state as well as the federal level), and social and cultural organizations. A planned 42nd volume, an index of the other 41 volumes, was never issued.[4]

  • Volumes 1-2: Abstracts of Reports of The Immigration Commission, with Conclusions and Recommendations and Views of the Minority.
  • Volume 3: Frederick Croxton. Statistical Review of Immigration, 1820-1910. Distribution of Immigrants, 1850-1900.
  • Volume 4: Emigration Conditions in Europe.
  • Volume 5: Daniel Folkmar, assisted by Elnora Folkmar. Dictionary of Races or People.
  • Volumes 6-7: W. Jett Lauck. Bituminous Coal Mining.
  • Volumes 8-9: W. Jett Lauck. Iron and Steel Manufacturing.
  • Volume 10: W. Jett Lauck. Cotton Goods Manufacturing in the North Atlantic States; Woolen and Worsted Goods Manufacturing.
  • Volume 11: Silk Goods and Manufacturing and Dyeing; Clothing Manufacturing; Collar, Cuff, and Shirt Manufacturing.
  • Volume 12: W. Jett Lauck. Leather Manufacturing; Boot and Shoe Manufacturing; Glove Manufacturing.
  • Volume 13: W. Jett Lauck. Slaughtering and Meat Packing.
  • Volume 14: W. Jett Lauck. Glass Manufacturing; Agricultural Implement and Vehicle Manufacturing.
  • Volume 15: W. Jett Lauck. Cigar and Tobacco Manufacturing; Furniture Manufacturing; Sugar Refining.
  • Volume 16: W. Jett Lauck. Copper Mining and Smelting; Iron Ore Mining; Anthracite Coal Mining; Oil Refining.
  • Volumes 17-18: W. Jett Lauck. Diversified Industries.Washington: G.P.O., 1911.
  • Volumes 19-20: W. Jett Lauck. Summary Report on Immigrants in Manufacturing and Mining.
  • Volumes 21-22: Alexander Cance. Recent Immigrants in Agriculture.
  • Volumes 23-25: Harry A. Millis. Japanese and Other Immigrant Races in the Pacific Coast and Rocky Mountain States.
  • Volumes 26-27: Emanuel A. Goldenweiser. Immigrants in Cities: A Study of the Population of Selected Districts in New York, Chicago, Philadelphia, Boston, Cleveland, Buffalo, and Milwaukee.
  • Volume 28: Joseph Hill. Occupations of the First and Second Generations of Immigrants in the United States; Fecundity of Immigrant Women.
  • Volumes 29-33: The Children of Immigrants in Schools.
  • Volumes 34-35: Immigrants as Charity Seekers.
  • Volume 36: Leslie Hayford. Immigration and Crime.
  • Volume 37: Steerage Conditions, Importation and Harboring of Women for Immoral Purposes, Immigrant Homes and Aid Societies, Immigrant Banks.
  • Volume 38: Changes in Bodily Form of Descendants of Immigrants: (Final Report).
  • Volume 39: Immigration Legislation.
  • Volume 40: The Immigration Situation in other Countries: Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Argentina, Brazil.
  • Volume 41: Statements and Recommendations Submitted by Societies and Organizations Interested in the Subject of Immigration.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Dillingham Commission - North American Immigration
  2. ^ Commission Recommendations, vol. I, p. 48
  3. ^ Open Collections Program: Immigration to the US, Dillingham Commission (1907-1910)
  4. ^ Reports of the Immigration Commission. Washington: Government Printing Office, 1911

Further reading[edit]

  • Pula, James S. "American Immigration Policy and the Dillingham Commission," Polish American Studies (1980) 37#1 pp 5-31.
  • Zeidel, Robert F. Immigrants, Progressives, and Exclusion Politics: The Dillingham Commission, 1900-1927 (2004)

External links[edit]