Nativists (Anti-Immigrant Movement)

philadelphia_nativist_riot_.jpg"In the mid-1840s, the United States witnessed a sudden increase in the number of immigrants from Europe, particularly from Germany and Ireland...The Irish immigrants in particular were overwhelmingly Roman Catholic, the Christian church headed by the pope in Rome, Italy. The arrival of the Irish immigrants in eastern cities like New York, Boston, and Philadelphia marked the first significant number of Catholics in a country that previously had been primarily Protestant. This sudden inflow of immigrants sparked a sharp reaction among some Americans, who feared that the character of the United States might change dramatically if large numbers of Catholics became citizens. The result was an anti-immigrant movement called the Know Nothings, so called because members of the variety of organizations that constituted the movement customarily replied "I know nothing" when asked about their association."

"'A Know Nothing' (Anonymous)." U.S. Immigration and Migration Reference Library. Ed. Lawrence W. Baker, et al. Vol. 5: Primary Sources. Detroit: UXL, 2004. 40-55. Gale U.S. History In Context. Web. 1 Feb. 2011.

Information on the later part of the Anti-Immigrant era - Interesting information about anti-immigration in the late 1800's and early 1900's. (Note the orange tabs across the top with links to great information.)

Progressive Movement - This website is a great overview of the time when most reform movements took place. It will help you understand the context of the movements and also give you some insight into their success or failure. A great place to get some ideas for icons to use. (Note the orange tabs at the top which have links to useful information.)

Other sources to try: