OLD NEIGHBORS IN THE NEW WORLD: POLES, GERMANS, JEWS AND RUTHENIANS ON MANHATTAN LOWER EAST SIDE
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Poles, when they arrived in large numbers to the United States, at the turn of the nineteenth century, settled in American cities next to Germans and Jews. Soon Ruthenians (Rusyns) joined. In the course of time, ethnic neighborhoods of these four immigrant groups overlapped in New York, and also in Chicago, Buffalo, Detroit, Cleveland, Milwaukee, and many other cities. It is asserted in the text that 'old neighbors' who settled next to each other, initially cooperated. At the beginning of mass migration, there was a lot of ethnic mixing and intermingling. Soon after their arrival to the US, newcomers became involved in ethnic community building process which eventually led in case of each (studied) group to ethnic institutional completeness. The community building process involved constructing of barriers and boundaries which were to separate 'us' from 'them'. The process was intertwined with rising nationalism both in the 'old' and in the 'new world'. At the turn of the century, the new ethnic leaders wanted to mobilize their groups, to make their members involve in European politics. Eventually they managed to put 'old neighbors' into confrontation. The conflict picked at the time of the World War I.
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