Factors that probably influenced Congress to pass the immigration act of 1924

Essay by anazwarriorHigh School, 11th gradeA+, May 2004

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Before Congress passed the Immigration Act of 1924, there were several restrictions for immigrants who desired a better life in the United States. "Immigrants and anyone else perceived as "un-American" seemed to threaten the old ways" (Nash pg. 749). Several Acts had been passed, one of them passed in 1882 prohibited the entry of criminal, paupers and the insane, and special agreements like the one that restricted both Chinese and Japanese immigration in 1908. Another Act was passed in 1917 over President Wilson's veto, for the first time in history an act that required a literacy test came in action. "Under the act of 1924 the number of each nationality who may be admitted annually is limited to 2 per cent of the population of such nationality resident in the united states according to the census of 1890" (Document A). In other words, Congress limited European immigration to 3 per cent of the number of each nationality present in the country in 1910 but changed the quota to only 2 per cent in 1924.

The immigration Act of 1924 established quotas for immigration based on the US population of each ethnic group in 1910. It made it even more difficult for people from southern and eastern Europe to migrate, only 2 percent of the given year 1890 not 3 per cent as in 1810. In the United States bureau of the census, historical statistics of the Unites states can be found, in here we can find how many southern and eastern Europeans entered the us between 1900 and the outbreak of the World War I, especially in the peak of 1907(Document B). This Act had four main principal factors, which influenced Congress into accepting this new act. These four reasons were mainly over political, economic, social and cultural (ethnic)...