Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 65.djvu/168

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164
POPULAR SCIENCE MONTHLY.

IMMIGRATION.[1]
By Dr. ALLAN MCLAUGHLIN,

U. S. PUBLIC HEALTH AND MARINE HOSPITAL SERVICE.

CAUSES of emigration may be considered according to their origin, and divided into three classes. (1) Individual—the spontaneous desires for better things arising in the emigrant himself; (2) local—existing conditions surrounding him in his old world home which develop and stimulate his inherent desire for social, political or financial betterment; (3) extraneous—outside influences operating from America or other countries.

In considering the causes arising within the emigrant himself—the desire for ownership of a home will be found present in a very large proportion of cases. This desire for his own home probably exists in the heart of every man worthy of the name. It forms the foundation of our social structure and is the unit of civilization and advancement among all progressive races. In the early days of the republic it is certain that the immigrant was a homeseeker in nearly every instance, like his predecessor the colonist. And probably this desire to become owners actuates the majority of immigrants, even in our own day.

Often coupled with the desire for ownership of a home there exists in the independent liberty-loving immigrant a desire for free institutions, for a country where the schools are open to all regardless of race or creed, where he may worship God in his own way, according to the faith of his fathers, and where in time he may through the franchise play at least a small part in the political life of his adopted country.

The emigrant leaves often to escape compulsory military service in support of a government in which he has little or no representation. Thousands of European immigrants who arrived in the United States just previous to or during the civil war left Europe rather than submit to compulsory military service, and yet voluntarily enlisted and served faithfully in the union armies in the great conflict. They showed that they were not afraid to fight when the cause at issue was in accord with their principles, but that they resented the military system of their native land.


  1. Dr. Allan McLaughlin, of the Bureau of Public Health and Marine Hospital Service, of the Treasury Department, has contributed to The Popular Science Monthly several articles on 'Immigration,' which have been of much interest to readers and have been highly commended by experts. We are pleased to state that Dr. McLaughlin has consented to continue this series of articles, covering in a systematic way the whole problem of immigration.—Editor.