THE IMMIGRATION ACT OF 1965 & THE VALLEY

Immigration is a fundamental part of many Americans experience. This country was built by the labor of immigrants. Evolving immigration laws reflected prevailing prejudices amid our struggle to find our national identity. In 1965, the federal Immigration and Nationality Act allowed for family sponsorship and opened the United States to immigration from previously restricted countries. In this lesson, students will analyze the changes in United States immigration after the Immigration Act of 1965. They will be assigned a demographic group and use the sources provided to write an essay summarizing their research. Students will format their essays in the style of a personal narrative from the perspective of an immigrant coming to the central San Joaquin Valley in the 1970s. Students will gain a more personal understanding of the push/pull factors for immigration. Students are also directed to include the immigrant experience as they struggle to adapt to another culture in a new country, including lack of resources and discrimination. This lesson will help students to connect the evolving national immigration experience to local immigrant stories in California and the central San Joaquin Valley.

This is designed as a local supplement to a broader foundational lesson.

“The Hmong: A Struggle in the Sun.” Special Edition. The Fresno Bee, circa 1985. Mabelle Selland Research Papers, Fresno County Historical Society.

LESSON AND SOURCES BY DEMOGRAPHIC GROUP

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LESSON PLAN - Immigration Act of 1965 & The Valley.

Fresno County Historical Society.

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Lesson Plan Handouts

Fresno County Historical Society.

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”Valley Mosaic - Fresno Bee Time Capsule." Special Edition. The Fresno Bee, January 1, 2000.

Courtesy of Arte Americas.

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Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965. Public Law 89-236, October 3, 1965. Eighty Ninth United States Congress.

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Immigration Act fo 1924. Public Law 68-139, May 26, 1924. Sixty Eighth United States Congress.

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Bill McEwen. “Immigrants Built Fresno. And We’re Better For It.” GV Wire, January 8, 2018.

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“Essay: 1921-present: Modern California - Migration, Technology, Cities.” Calisphere, University of California, 2011.

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Ran Abramitzky and Lea Boustan. “Immigration in American Economic History.” Journal of Economic Literature 55(4), December 2017: 1311-1345.

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“The Legacy of the 1965 Immigration Act: Three Decades of Mass Immigration.” Center for Immigration Studies, September 1, 1995.

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History.com Editors. “U.S. Immigration Before 1965.” History.com, October 29, 2009.

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“Migrants, asylum seekers, refugees and immigrants: What’s the difference?” Rescue.org, June 22, 2018.

NORTH AFRICA: ALGERIA, EGYPT, ETHIOPIA & LIBYA

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Sandra Tompkins. “Out of Ethiopia.” The Fresno Bee, February 2, 1986. Mabelle Selland Research Papers, Fresno County Historical Society.

Dennis Pollock. “All the Way From Ethiopia.” The Fresno Bee, circa 1985. Mabelle Selland Research Papers, Fresno County Historical Society.

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Ugwumba Eqbuta. “The Migrant Crisis in Libya and the Nigeria Experience.” African Centre for the Constructive Resolution of Disputes, January 2019.

SOUTH ASIA: AFGHANISTAN, BANGLADESH, INDIA, IRAN, PAKISTAN

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Oral History. “Passport.” New Tech High School, Napa, California. Your Story, Our Story, Tenement Museum, 2019.

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Who Are The Sikhs?   Mabelle Selland Research Papers, circa 1980. Fresno County Historical Society.

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“Portraits: Indian Sikhs.” National Endowment for the Humanities presentation script, circa 1980. Mabelle Selland Collection, Fresno County Historical Society.

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Frank Lewis and Puran Stevens. “Iranian Refugees in America: A Cross-Cultural Perspective.” U.S. Bahá’í Refugee Office, 1986. Maybelle Selland Collection, Fresno County Historical Society.

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Zak Cheney-Rice. “How Fresno, California, Became a Hotspot for Anti-Sikh Violence in America.” Mic.com, January 20, 2016.

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SOUTHEAST ASIA: CAMBODIA, LAOS, THAILAND & VIETNAM

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Oral History. HmongStory40 Project interviews. HmongStory40.org. YouTube.

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“The Hmong: A Struggle in the Sun" Special Edition. The Fresno Bee, circa 1985. Mabelle Selland Research Papers, Fresno County Historical Society.

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“Heritage of Diversity: Laotian Americans.”  Mabelle Selland Research Papers, Fresno County Historical Society.

Jim Steinberg. “Viet Family’s Fresno Reunion Ends 8-year Flight to Freedom.” The Fresno Bee, circa 1980. Mabelle Selland Research Papers, Fresno County Historical Society.

Donald E. Coleman. “A Hero’s Rites in Fresno.” and Jim Steinberg. "Common Woes," The Fresno Bee, circa 1990. Mabelle Selland Research Papers, Fresno County Historical Society.

“What If My Parents Had Not Escaped Laos?” The Fresno Bee, January 19, 2008. Mabelle Selland Research Papers, Fresno County Historical Society.

EAST ASIA: CHINA, JAPAN, KOREA, THE PHILIPPINES & TAIWAN

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Oral History. “Lovingly Letters.” California State University Channel Islands, Camarillo, California. Your Story, Our Story, Tenement Museum.

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Oral History. “Filipino Flag.” Lakewood, California. Your Story, Our Story, Tenement Museum.

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Consul Tae Hee Park, Consulate General of the Republic of Korea, San Francisco. “Korea Today” speech, May 20, 1981. Mabelle Selland Research Papers, Fresno County Historical Society.

“Land.” The Fresno Bee, June 8, 1980. Mabelle Selland Research Papers, Fresno County Historical Society.

THE AMERICAS: EL SALVADOR, GUATEMALA, MEXICO, NICARAGUA & PERU

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StoryCorps Oral History Interviews: Immigration, California. StoryCorps Archive. 

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Oral History. “A Child of DACA.” New Tech High School, Napa, California. Your Story, Our Story, Tenement Museum, 2019.

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Oral History. “Nacatamal.” New Tech High School, Napa, California. Your Story, Our Story, Tenement Museum, 2019.

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Oral History. “Dreamer.” California State University, Channel Islands, Camarillo, California. Your Story, Our Story, Tenement Museum, Brooklyn, New York.

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Oral History. “My Family.” California State University, Channel Islands, Camarillo, California. Your Story, Our Story, Tenement Museum.

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Oral History. “Passport, Cruxifix.” Los Angeles, California. Your Story, Our Story, Tenement Museum.

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Oral History. “Passport.” Santa Ana, California. Your Story, Our Story, Tenement Museum.

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Oral History. “Cadillac Deville 98.” Anaheim, California. Your Story, Our Story, Tenement Museum.

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Oral History. “American Dream.” Los Angeles, California. Your Story, Our Story, Tenement Museum.

ADDITIONAL RESOURCES

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Immigration: Stories, Struggles, and Debates. The Curriculum Companion for Immigration: The Ultimate Teen Guide by Tatyana Kleyn,

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Teaching Immigration with the Immigrant Stories Project: Lesson Plans. Immigration History Research Center, University of Minnesota. 

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The New Americans: For Educators. Independent Lens, Public Broadcasting Service. 

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A Refugee's Story Lesson Plan. Global Oneness Project. 

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Immigration Laws and Enforcement with 1790 - 2014 Timeline. Immigration History. 

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A Cold Reception: Anti-Immigrant Sentiment in the United States Lesson Plan. Faces of America, Public Broadcasting Service.  

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Understanding Immigration Reform Lesson Plan. PBS Newshour Extra, November 18, 2012.

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