Between 1820 and 1924, there was a large influx of Jewish immigrants to the United States from Eastern and Central Europe. They were escaping oppressive laws that many parts of Europe passed that targeted Jews, along with increased violence from pogroms and riots. These immigrants hoped that the United States would provide them with a fresh start and more freedom. However, this was not always the case, as many Jews continued to experience antisemitism in their new home.

Join the Museum for a program exploring Jewish immigration in the United States, presented by Hasia Diner, the Paul and Sylvia Steinberg Professor of American Jewish History at New York University, in conversation with Daniel Okrent, author of The Guarded Gate: Bigotry, Eugenics, and the Law that Kept Two Generations of Jews, Italians, and Other European Immigrants Out of America. They will discuss the different waves of immigration during this period, the specific reasons why Jews left Europe, and why they chose the United States as their new home.

Hasia R. Diner is the Paul and Sylvia Steinberg Professor of American Jewish History and director of the Goldstein Goren Center for American Jewish History. She is the author of numerous books, including In the Almost Promised Land: American Jews and Blacks 1915-1935 and Roads Taken: The Great Jewish Migrations to the New World and the Peddlers Who Forged the Way.
Daniel Okrent is the prize-winning author of six books, including The Guarded Gate, Last Call: The Rise and Fall of Prohibition, Great Fortune: The Epic of Rockefeller Center. Among his many jobs in publishing, he was corporate editor-in-large at Time Inc., and was the first public editor of The New York Times.