Mix of period footage circa 1910, retrospective interviews in 1975, and some still images. European immigration in bad travel conditions to America. View from rail on deck of a ship in heavy seas. An elderly European immigrant recalls his experiences of the journey on ship to America. Ship in Atlantic Ocean. Picture of European immigrants on ship deck. Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island. Early 1900s period footage of immigrants arriving at Ellis Island and disembarking from ship, then walking with luggage for processing at Ellis Island. Some immigrants peer across New York Harbor at the skyline of New York city. Scene change to 1975 and views of interiors of a no longer used building in Ellis Island. Names of persons carved on walls. A man shares his experience as an immigrant passing through Ellis Island, and then as an immigration inspector reviewing new immigrants as they arrived.
Start of a documentary production titled,"The Inheritance."
Introductory slate tells how in December, 1914, the Amalgamated Clothing Workers of America (Union) was founded in a meeting at Webster Hall, New York City. It also describes how far and wide that union had grown in the ensuing 50 years.
An ocean liner is seen in the mist in New York Harbor. Fog horn sounds. The statue of Liberty is seen dimly through the fog. A commercial ship and a tug boat pass in front of Ellis Island. Views of building interior, Sign in boiler room reads: "U.S. Immigrant Station. Ellis Island. N.Y.H." Furnace door and thermometer and pressure gauges are seen. Large hall is seen. Camera pans through the empty corridors and rooms of the facility. The frame of an iron baby's crib sits in an empty room. View through window of Ellis Island proper, just outside, and of New York City buildings across the water. Montage of still photo images: Immigrants on the deck of a ship in 1901. Views of small children. A group of immigrants wearing the fez. Immigrants waving their hats as they see the Statue of Liberty. Broader view of the ship packed with immigrants. Interior of Ellis Island building with queue of new arrivals being processed. Immigration officers seated on high stools, checking documents of arrivals. Medical officer examines a boy with a stethoscope (screening for TB). View shifts to passengers arriving. They walk across the pier, carrying their belongings.
Alien immigrants arrive at Ellis Island in New York by ferry. Ellis Island ferry coming into slip. Tug boats bring aliens to Immigration Building from SS Siboney. Aliens walk towards Immigration Building for processing to enter America. Doorway and American flag, entrance to administration building. Ellis Island ferry slip and life-ring 'Ellis Island' in foreground.
Wheel House of Ellis Island Ferry boat, with the name "Ellis Island" painted on it. View from the wheel house, as the ferry travels toward Ellis Island. Wheel house view as the ferry heads into its slip on Ellis Island, and as it berths. Deck hands set bridging plate in position and passengers leave the ferry. A luggage trolley being driven aboard the ferry.
Design plans to examine the history of the Ellis Island and restoration of the main immigrant arrival building. Still photo pictures of European immigrants at Ellis Island. Statue of Liberty. Set of buildings, interiors of hall and immigration depot and pictures photographed at Ellis Island before restoration. Engineers at construction site. Main building of Island and entrance to the building. Drawing and designs of museum and other parts of main building after restoration. Old pictures show immigrants enter the baggage room. Drawings of staircase to be built and pictures of registry room, galleries and administrative office and ticket office. Engineers examine blueprints.
Shot from Ellis Island looking out to Lower Manhattan and over to Liberty Island and its vicinity in New York City, United States. The recently completed World Trade Center Twin Towers. View of broken piers and debris in water near Ellis Island complex. The Statue of Liberty on Liberty Island.