Between the years of 1910 and 1940, millions of people crossed the Pacific Ocean towards America, in order to escape poverty, oppression, and war in their native countries. Fleeing from China, Japan, and Nazi Germany, they sought to reach a land of opportunity. Before being allowed to land on the West Coast, immigrants would be processed at the Angel Island Immigration Station, isolated in the bay of San Francisco, California. Here, immigrants would be detained for months at a time, undergoing grueling interrogations by U.S. Officials and suffering through deplorable living conditions. The Station was built with the sole purpose of exclusion rather than inclusion, particularly aimed at deporting those of non-European ethnicity. In time, all that will remain from this important part of United States history, is the resonating stories passed down from generation to generation.
This is an ongoing photo essay, and I am still looking for former detainees and decedents of former detainees to photograph. Please contact me if you know someone who may be interested.
If you would like to donate to help support this project, please go to my Funding/Donations page for more information.