Last updated on: 1/30/2017 | Author:

May 26, 1924 – Johnson-Reed Immigration Act Reduces Quotas

“[T]he Johnson-Reed Act of [May 26,] 1924 limited the total European immigration to 150,000 per year, and reduced each nationality’s allowance to 2 percent of its U.S. population in 1890. Because significantly fewer Southern and Eastern Europeans were recorded in the 1890 census than in 1920, this effectively reduced immigration from these regions while making more room than was necessary for countries like Great Britain. In 1929, when the quota system was finalized, the ratio of immigrants admittable from northern and western Europe versus southern and eastern Europe was roughly five to one. In 1924, America had effectively shut its ‘Golden Door.’ Fewer than 350,000 Europeans immigrated to America during the 1930s, and a high percentage of these were political refugees, particularly from nazi Germany and, at the end of the decade, occupied Europe. In general, these immigrants came from a much higher socio-economic class than their predecessors.”