English lessons

WPA photo, Duluth, Minnesota

Finnish-speaking lumber workers in Duluth, Minnesota, learn English through a class in parliamentary procedure. During the late 19th and early 20th centuries tens of millions of farmers and workers from Europe, Asia, and Latin America moved to North America in search of work. Although anti-immigrant sentiment, and sometimes violence, was common in the U.S. and Canada, governments and private agencies also tried to teach immigrants the culture and language of their adopted land. In some cases, immigrants eagerly participated in these “Americanization” and Canadianization” programs, especially when immigrants considered the programs helpful to their own goals. But in other cases, immigrants rejected and resented forced conformity.

More information

Source:
National Archives and Records Administration
Date:
1930s
Subjects:
Education Immigration
Places:
Minnesota
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