Access is available on and off campus to current McMaster University students, faculty and staff.
Coverage: 1840 to the present
Contemporaneous letters and diaries, oral histories, interviews, and other personal narratives provide a unique and personal view of what it meant to immigrate to America and Canada between 1800 and 1950. Includes 2,162 authors and approximately 100,000 pages of information, and in selected cases, the actual audio voices of the immigrants.
Time period: 1840 to the present, focusing heavily on the period from 1920 to 1980.
Scope: People from many countries are represented, including more recent waves of immigrants from Latin America and Asia; includes several thousand pages of Ellis Island Oral History interviews.
Disciplines: Labour historians will benefit from details describing work in restaurants, meat packing plants, mines, railroads, and factories. Sociologists will find lengthy passages describing immigrant schooling, social life, domestic life, and community rituals. Students of literature will find descriptions of the events that inspired Upton Sinclair and Theodore Dreiser.
Content: Provides perspectives both on North America and on the immigrants