People immigrate to the United States for many different reasons. These worksheets explore some of them.

The following collection of worksheets will teach your students about the different groups that have immigrated to North America (the United States in particular), from thousands of years ago through current times. Topics include specific groups, various reasons for immigrating, events and discoveries that drove immigration, and more. Each worksheet contains a brief reading passage and a number of questions (true/false, multiple choice, fill in the blank) about the information. Answer keys have been provided for instructors.

Fun Fact: 40% of the Fortune 500 companies, which account for two-thirds of the US gross domestic product, were founded directly by immigrants or their children.

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Coming To America

The first immigrants to this vast land known as the United States of America arrived close to 12,000 years ago from Asia.

The Big Rush In

A huge influx of immigrants arrived from Europe between 1880&1920. Many were drawn to the New World in hopes of a better life.

Potato Famine

The potato was an important crop in Ireland. So important that 1.5 million people depended solely on the potato.

Homestead Act 1862

The Homestead Act of 1862 permitted a person to acquire 160 acres of land in exchange for five years of farming. The idea of owing this parcel of land was very attractive to many Europeans, especially those with an agricultural background.

Gold!

Sutter's Mill located in California was the location gold was discovered. This discovery led to a powerful stampede of people looking for gold!

1886

Discrimination was prevalent among many immigrants. Perhaps the most vicious of discrimination occurred toward African Americans and the Chinese.

1870 Minnesota

Toward the late 1800’s many immigrants arrived in Minnesota from Norway, Sweden, Finland, and Denmark.

Statue of Liberty

The first sight often viewed by the immigrants arriving in New York Harbor was the Statue of Liberty.

Ellis Island

More than 12 million immigrants arrived in America and were "processed" into the country through Ellis Island.

Census

This is completed every ten years. This census provides only a ballpark figure of the number of people living in the U.S. Illegal immigration exists and this can skew the outcome of the census.