When people move and emigrate to a new land, they often lose track of their ancestry. Records are lost, memories are lost. When the older generation dies, there is often nobody left to tell the story of their ancestry to the younger generation.
In the United States, websites abound that specialize in doing ancestral searches. One of the biggest websites is ancestry.com. Americans can’t get enough of searching for their ancestors. They want to do their family tree. They want to know who their long-lost relatives are. Sometimes they’ll have a family reunion and meet, for the first time, long-l0st relatives.
Who are my ancestors? Where did my ancestors come from? Do I have living relatives who I don’t know exist?
These are some of the questions that Americans ask themselves.
Americans whose ancestors arrived in the United States between 1892 and 1924 use sites such as Ellisisland.org to help them identify their ancestors and to learn about their backgrounds. Ellis Island opened on January 1, 1892 as a port of migration for millions, and closed as a port of mass migration in 1924, when the government began to heavily restrict immigration into the United States.
What do you know about your ancestors? Are you interested in doing an ancestral search? Are you interested in learning more about your family tree?
How, and why, have memories gotten lost?
For an additional reading comprehension activity about Ellis Island, click on this link.