Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Other Museums - German Emigration Museum

This week, we're taking a look at immigration museums off the beaten path.

Bremerhaven, a small port city in northern Germany, is the exact inverse of New York: it's where millions (7.2 to be exact) set sail for Ellis Island over a century ago, when a population boom and rocky transition from agriculture to industry rendered jobs and land scarce. So rather than documenting immigrant life, the Emigration Musem recreates conditions on a departing steamship and in the waiting areas where family members said their goodbyes. The museum has some quirky touches: lifesize mannequins dressed in 19th century garb are stationed in the main building, which fittingly evokes a boat, and in addition to learning about the lives of millions of emigrants and their descendants (chances are, some of them wound up near 97 Orchard), visitors can trace their own family history using an extensive database. Click here for a more detailed overview.

Few historic buildings remain in one of Germany's most important port cities

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