1891 – Fifteen year old Annie Moore departs Queenstown (now Cobh, Co Cork), becoming the first immigrant to pass through Ellis Island.

Stair na hÉireann/History of Ireland

Annie Moore stood in line with her two younger brothers, Philip and Anthony. They were waiting to board the SS Nevada, a ship that would take them from Ireland to New York.

Even though she was sad, she was also excited about seeing her parents again. They had gone to America two years earlier with her older brother. Her parents had jobs in New York. They did not like the big city, but they had an apartment and enough money for food and clothing. Life was better than it had been in Ireland.

The ‘New York Times article headline read:

‘LANDED ON ELLIS ISLAND: NEW IMMIGRATION BUILDINGS OPENED YESTERDAY’

Colours, creeds, rich and (for the most part) poor, the sick, the hopeful and the fearful flooded through the gate of Ellis Island that day. As the New York Times told the city, ‘A rosy-cheeked Irish girl was the first registered’…

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