Immigration Act (1924)

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The Immigration Act of 1924 (also known as the Johnson-Reed Act) was the second major act signed by the United States that imposed restrictions on immigration. The act reduced the total quota number of immigration into the United States to 165,000-20 percent less than the pre-World War I average.[1]

The quota instruction limited effort to limit immigration from Eastern and Southern Europe and reduced the amount of Italians entering the United States from 200,000 to 4,000.[1] The act also provided for a future reduction of the quotas to 154,000.[2] As a result of the act only 500,000 people entered the United States during the 1930s.

In 1924, U.S. Representative Emanuel Celler stated, "We were afraid of foreigners; we distrusted them; we didn't like them. Under this act only some one hundred and fifty odd thousands would be permitted to enter the United States. If you were of Anglo-Saxon origin, you could have over two-thirds of the quota numbers allotted to your people. If you were Japanese, you could not come in at all. That, of course, had been true of the Chinese since 1880. If you were southern or eastern European, you could dribble in and remain on sufferance."[3]


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