Located where the Atlantic Ocean meets the Hudson River, Ellis Island was the perfect place to stop and process boats entering the United States; Thus Ellis Island opened as a federal immigration station in 1892. All immigrants would wait in long medical and legal inspection lines. If they passed inspections, they were allowed to come into the United States; if they didn’t pass, they were put on the next ship out. Many families were split up due to medical issues that prevented individual family members from entering. Today, Ellis Island houses a museum paying tribute to these immigrants. Visitors can expect to see pictures, documents, and rooms recreated to look like the original processing areas. Many of the museum’s visitors are descendants of the original immigrants and come with the hope of catching a glimpse of a document or item that connected their ancestors’ experiences.
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