Ellis Island, New York

Ellis Island, as it appeared around 1905. Image courtesy of the Library of Congress, Detroit Publishing Company Collection.


The view in 2012:


Opened in 1892, Ellis Island served as an immigration center until 1954, and during that time about 12 immigrants were processed there. The first building burned in a 1897 fire, and the present building was opened in 1900. The island itself was significantly expanded both before and after the 1905 photo, which was the subject of a border dispute between New York and New Jersey. The Supreme Court ruled that only the original part of the island is New York, and the artificial fill is New Jersey, meaning that the New York section is completely surrounded by New Jersey.