From Germany to Mexico: How America’s source of immigrants has changed over a century


Nearly 59 million immigrants have arrived in the United States since 1965, making the nation the top destination in the world for those moving from one country to another. Mexico, which shares a nearly 2,000-mile border with the U.S., is the source of the largest wave of immigration in history from a single country to the United States.

But today’s volume of immigrants is in some ways a return to America’s past. A century ago, the U.S. experienced another large wave of 18.2 million immigrants, hailing largely from Europe. Many Americans can trace their roots to that wave, from 1890 to 1919, when Germany dominated as the country sending the most immigrants to many of the U.S. states, although the United Kingdom, Canada and Italy were also strongly represented.




My grandparents were immigrants from Mexico. They arrived in the United States in the 1960s. They still speak Spanish most of the time. This disappoints me because I am not able to have much of a relationship with them due to the language barrier. I tend to be culturally white American. I am assimilated. I think that all immigrants should assimilate.


Here is another eye opening statistic:

In the 1840s, the Catholic population in the US was 2%

By the 1920s, the Catholic population had grown to 22%

That is what spawned the ugly Nativist and KKK movements (which are being fired back up today). Also, the Jewish population increased during that same time frame, due to immigration, which also made the KKK more powerful. They targeted blacks, Catholics, and Jews.


DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit