Immigration and Ethnic History Society

The Immigration and Ethnic History Society was founded in 1965 as the Immigration History Group. It was renamed the Immigration History Society in 1972, and was subsequently chartered as a non-profit organization in Minnesota. In 1998, the Society, which had traditionally dealt with matters of ethnicity as well as immigration, changed its name to the Immigration and Ethnic History Society. [Read more. . .]

Become a Member

Membership in the IEHS includes a subscription to the Journal of American Ethnic History as well as to the IEHS Newsletter. To become a member, simply fill out the subscription form for the Journal of American Ethnic History.

• To enroll or renew online, visit

• To enroll or renew by mail, use this printable form.


What's New at IEHS

Immigrant America:

New Immigration and Immigration Histories from 1965 to 2015

An Interdisciplinary Conference Marking the 50th Anniversary

of the 1965 Immigration Act


Friday, October 23 – Saturday, October 24, 2015
University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN


Sponsored by the Immigration History Research Center (University of Minnesota)

and the Immigration and Ethnic History Society


 Conference Description:

1965 was a turning point in the long history of immigration to the United States. That year, President Lyndon Baines Johnson signed into law the 1965 Immigration Act, a law that removed national origins quotas, reshaped immigration to the United States, and led to the creation of new immigrant communities. This conference uses the anniversary of the 1965 Immigration Act to explore the connections between contemporary and historical migrations and communities in the U.S. We invite faculty, graduate students, independent scholars, artists, community advocates, and public history professionals from a wide range of disciplines to join us in examining all aspects of post-1965 immigration, including the ways in which it has affected the study of immigration before 1965. In examining how immigration has transformed the United States in the past fifty years, we hope to contribute to the development of migration studies across disciplines and to identify key directions for future scholarship.

Co-sponsors: Immigration History Research Center and Archives (University of Minnesota), which promotes interdisciplinary research on migration, race, and ethnicity in the U.S. and houses the largest archive of immigrant and refugee life in North America, and the Immigration and Ethnic History Society, the premier professional association of historians who study immigration and ethnicity. Both organizations will be celebrating their 50th anniversaries in 2015.


For complete information, conference themes, and submission guidelines, see the attached Call for Papers or email:



Erika Lee

Rudolph J. Vecoli Chair in Immigration History

Director, Immigration History Research Center

311 Elmer L. Andersen Library

University of Minnesota

222-21st Ave S.
Minneapolis MN 55455  USA
ph: 612-625-5573

Angel Island: Immigrant Gateway to America
(now out in paperback!)

Visit the IHRC online  to learn about upcoming events, our Immigrant Stories Digital Storytelling Project, and our 2015 interdisciplinary Conference Marking the 50th Anniversary of the 1965 Immigration Act: Immigrant America: New Immigration and Immigration Histories from 1965 to 2015.




For those of you who will be attending the next OAH meeting: The IEHS cordially invites you to "Dessert Before Dinner," the fifth annual reception for graduate students and early career scholars to take place at the upcoming OAH meeting in Atlanta. This reception will introduce emerging scholars to the Immigration and Ethnic History Society and offer them the opportunity to meet senior scholars in the field. Attendees will have the chance to speak to IEHS members about their flagship publication, the Journal of American Ethnic History, as well as the awards and prizes sponsored by the society.

This year at the reception, we will also honor Albert Camarillo, Alan Kraut, and Vicki Ruiz for their service to the IEHS and the OAH.

Please join us for this event on Thursday evening, April 10th, 4:30-6:30 PM, at the Crystal B/E rooms at the Atlanta Hilton. 

                             OAH Annual Meeting Call for Proposals

The Organization of American Historians is currently accepting proposals for their April 2015 meeting in St. Louis. Click here for more information:

Please remember that IEHS co-sponsorship can help publicize your panel. If you would like the Immigration and Ethnic History Society to co-sponsor your panel, please contact Maria Cristina Garcia, chair of the IEHS programming committee (

                      OAH Announces Teaching Seminar in China

Thanks to a generous grant from the Ford Foundation, the Organization of American Historians and the American History Research Association of China (AHRAC) are pleased to announce the second of the inaugural series of teaching seminars in the People's Republic of China.

The OAH International Committee seeks applications from OAH members with strong records of research and teaching excellence who are interested in leading an advanced seminar focused on one of following three topics:

  1. the role of religion in American society; 
  2. American environmental history; and
  3. the structure and content of US graduate programs in US/American history, including discussion of curricula, program requirements, recent historiographical trends, teaching methods, research skills, and dissertation advising.

Proposed seminars on the history of food/food safety in the United States, and on Asian-American literature from nationalism to transnationalism, will also be considered. For more information, follow this link:


The History of the “New Immigration” Into 

Lawrence, Massachusetts and Similar Communities 

Saturday, April 5, 2014  

Everett Mill, 15 Union Street, Lawrence


The Lawrence History Center and its partners will host a one-day symposium on the history of the “new immigration,” into Lawrence, Massachusetts and similar communities. Scholars, graduate, undergraduate, and high school students are encouraged to submit proposals. Papers, artwork, spoken word, and video presentations are welcome.

In the last few decades, Lawrence and similar cities have been profoundly transformed by immigration. Beginning in the decades after World War II, and dramatically accelerating after 1965 immigration reform, immigrants and migrants from around the world (and particularly from throughout Latin America) created homes, businesses, and communities throughout the United States.

New England towns and cities have been no exception to this demographic transformation. Today, nearly three-quarters of Lawrence’s population is Latino, as a result of longstanding Latin American immigration to the city. Nearby Lowell has one of the highest concentrations of Cambodians in the U.S. Even small Lewiston, Maine has become a substantial immigrant settlement site, becoming home to many Somali refugees.

Lawrence and many other immigrant settlement sites had been earlier “gateway cities” for immigrants from Europe during New England’s industrial heyday, yet the long history of immigration to the region has not necessarily smoothed the path for more recent immigrants.

This symposium will take a historical approach to contemporary immigration, focusing on Lawrence, Massachusetts, and looking to understand the roots and significance of the demographic transition still underway. We hope also to engage the current population of Lawrence and its surrounding cities and towns in a civic dialogue about the impact of race, ethnicity, and class on immigrant reception and integration into communities like Lawrence. We will consider these and related topic areas:

·    Historical comparisons that explore earlier and more recent immigrant experiences (how immigrant groups fared when they arrived in the city and what steps they took to "melt in" as well as hold onto their ethnic identities)

·    The impact of global and regional economic trends on immigration and on the choice of where to settle

·    Changes in immigration law and enforcement, and in patterns of naturalization

·      Comparative presentations on other communities in the Commonwealth and New England

·    The effects of Immigration and Custom Enforcement Raids on workplaces, families and communities

·     The ‘Dream Act’ and contemporary movements for immigration reform

·     Immigration oral histories

We are currently exploring ways in which to publish the select papers from the symposium.

For proposal submission information and where to direct any questions you may have please visit:



The IEHS would like to hear from you! For planning purposes, we would like to know how many members regularly attend the AHA meeting in January. Would you like the IEHS to host some type of reception at the AHA on a regular basis? Please contact Hasia Diner (hasia.diner (at) or Maria Cristina Garcia (mariacristinagarcia (at) to offer feedback on this issue! 


The Immigration and Ethnic History Society invites its members in academia to advance the professionalization of their graduate student advisees by offering them a one-time introductory gift subscription to the Journal of American Ethnic History.  Subscription brings automatic membership in the IEHS and a full range of benefits including:

·    Subscription to the biannual newsletter which is not available online;

·    Access to the 'syllabi sharing' feature of the IEHS website;

·     IEHS sponsorship of panels at the AHA and OAH conferences;

·    The opportunity to meet and collaborate with a network of scholars in the field of immigration and ethnic history.

The enrollment form can be accessed at the IEHS website:   Please consider offering your graduate students a gift subscription to mark successful doctoral defenses, candidacy exams, and other important events.

The program committee invites ideas for panels and roundtables for IEHS co-sponsorship at the 2014 meetings of the OAH and the AHA.  Questions and submissions should be sent to the members of the program committee. 

Maria Cristina Garcia (,

Michael Innis-Jimenez (,

Maddelena Marinari (,  and

Lorrin Thomas  (

October 20, 2014
Journal of American Ethnic History

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