Immigration – Part 2

In part 1 I wrote about mass immigration. In this post I will write about chain immigration. This type of immigration is when one or two members of the family move, establishes themselves with a place to live and a job. Then more family comes over and it continues over a few years until the entire family immigrates. Here is a good example of this type of immigration on my husband’s side of the family.

The Gambino family from Lercara, Italy, consists of Ireneo, Beatrice, Antonino, Antonina, Pietra, Francesca, Concetta, Francesco, and Guiseppa. The oldest son, Antonino, was the first of this family to immigrate to America. He sailed over on the ship Spartan Prince and arrived on September 24, 1898. He was 23 years old, married to Caterina Loria who accompanied him, and their final destination listed on the ship’s manifest was 267 Elizabeth Street in NY- the home of his uncle Rosario Loria (which I am assuming is his wife Caterina’s uncle).

Lines 14 and 15 of the Spartan Prince manifest showing Antonino Gambino and Caterina Loria


The next family members that came over were his four sisters- Antonina, 18, Pietra 14, Concetta, 9, and Francesca, 11. They sailed over on the ship Lombardia and arrived on January 14, 1902. According to the ship manifest, their final destination was at their brother Antonino’s 267 Elizabeth St home.

Lines 8-11 of the Lombardia manifest showing Antonina, Pietra, Concetta, and Francesca.

The next family member to come over was the mother, Beatrice 46 years old. She sailed on the Tartar Prince which arrived on July 5, 1902. But this time, it wasn’t as straight forward, as women traveling alone would commonly be detained at Ellis Island. This is what happened to Beatrice. She is on the list of Records of Aliens Held for Special Inquiry. The reason is Likely Public Charge (LPC) because her husband was still in Italy. The concern was that they would not have any means to support themselves and would therfore have to prove that they had a home to go to.  These women were held until someone in America either picked them up, answered a telegram acknowledging they are expecting the person, or money is sent to assist them in travelling to their final destination. Beatrice has listed as her final destination her son Ant. Gambino, 267 Elizabeth St. They held her for one day as her release was on July 6th and it is documented they they gave her 1 breakfast, 1 lunch, and 1 supper while she was detained.

Tartar Prince manifest showing Beatrice Gambino.
Records of Aliens Held for Special Inquiry. Line 44 Shows Beatrice Gambino.

The last of the family sailed over on the Sicilian Prince. They arrived on January 14, 1903. Ireneo 53, Giuseppa 7, and Francesco 5, were all on this ship. Again, the final destination is son/brother, Gambino, Antonino at 267 Elizabeth St.

Lines 14-16 Sicilian Prince manifest shows Ireno, Guiseppa, and Francesco Gambino.

So here is an example of chain immigration. The family took 4 different ships to bring over 9 people from Sept 1898 to January 1903. A span of a little over 4 years to reunite everyone in the family.

The family tree is on the maternal side for John. His 2nd great grandparents are Ireneo and Beatrice and Concetta Gambino is his great grandmother.

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