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'Angel Island': Ellis Island Of The West

Oct 6, 2010 (Talk of the Nation)

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California's Angel Island is often called "the Ellis Island of the West." More than 300,000 people from 80 countries passed through the small immigration station off the San Francisco coast before entering the U.S. during the early 1900s.

Few of the new arrivals received a warm welcome. Russians, Japanese, Australians, Chinese, Mexicans and many others found themselves in the island's detention barracks upon arrival.

Among them was a poor, young Chinese man who crossed the Pacific under a false identity to start a new life in the United States. That man was historian Judy Yung's father.

Yung shares her father's journey to America with NPR's Neal Conan and discusses her book, Angel Island: Immigrant Gateway to America.

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