From 1820, the American government requires all ship's captain arriving in its ports the delivery of a landing list including the nationality of the passengers. It thus becomes possible to quantify immigration. After New York, New Orleans is the second port of the United States. Landing in Louisiana allows, via the Mississippi, to join the rich central lands of settlement.
If you are looking for an ancestor settled in the region of Saint-Louis, Missouri (where there are many Alsatians and Francophones), a hub of migration between the Atlantic East and the Pacific West, it is better to look for his landing in New Orleans rather than New York. Other ports are active, such as Charleston, to reach the "Old South" slavery, where there are colonies of Corsicans.
From 1848, for the brave ones attracted by the different road to gold or simply because they have the qualifications of indispensable shepherds (they will often become cowboys!), It is San Francisco which welcomes the migrants of the alpine valleys or the Basques who settle in California or Arizona.
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