The last immigrants were processed at Ellis Island on this day in 1954. Here are ten facts you may not know about America's Immigration Station.
1. Ellis Island was named after a tavern owner named Ellis. However, back in the 18th Century, it was called Gibbet Island after the gibbets used to hang a group of pirates there.
2. Before it was an immigration station, Ellis Island was used by the military to house ammunition and weaponry.
3. The young Irish woman Annie Moore was the first immigrant to be processed at Ellis Island in 1892.
4. It is sometimes called "Heartbreak Island" due to the high number of immigrants who were rejected due to disease or a criminal record.
5. Twelve million immigrants passed through the immigration station's doors in its 62 year history. In 1907, its peak year, 1.25 million immigrants were processed. Its peak day saw 12,000 immigrants.
6. The original island measured only 3 acres. However, in 1904, only a few years after acquiring the island, New York City built its subway system and dumped the dirt and rocks from the dugout tunnels on the island, making it nine times bigger.
7. The station's dining room could feed 1,000 people at a time.
8. In order to become an American citizen, one had to successfully answer 29 questions.
9. A kitchen fire destroyed the immigration station in 1897. Immigrants were re-routed until 1900 when the station was rebuilt.
10. Today the immigration station is a museum open to the public.
Note: For more information on Ellis Island, visit "The Ghosts of Ellis Island" at http://alinefromlinda.blogspot.ca/2012/08/august-10.html.
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