Tag Archives: california

Starting off Fresh (Tonga)

Knowing that I would start a new life, my mind and heart continued to push me forward, making me actually do it while my feet were trying to stop. Which led me to today, knowing that if I had never come here, I would never be who I am right now. My name is Sylvia Wolfgramm and I was born in ... Read More »

From City to City: The 20th Century Black Girl

Editor’s note: Slavery is an integral part of the American story and those who were forced to come to the US in chains, are no less immigrants than any other group. Not only was their freedom taken, but in many cases, their personal family history was lost. On this web site of immigration stories, we pick up their descendants’ story ... Read More »

The Adventures of Butter Nugget (Panama)

… since we were already poor we had nothing to eat almost the entire journey. Sometimes I think, why didn’t we cook the lizard? A Panamanian family searching for a way out of poverty. Two parents, six kids, and one on the way, walking on foot to their new destiny in the U.S.A. I watch my parents argue for a ... Read More »

A New Life (Mexico)

We did not know if we were ever coming back alive. It was all a risk we were taking, a risk we were willing to make. I kept walking and walking through the desert. I did not want to stop, I could not stop. I had to continue — for my family, for myself. No me puedo dar por vensido. ... Read More »

Mi viaje para un mejor futuro (Peru)

My daughter and I only saw him a couple of times in a year. I remember that one day my husband arrived home from work and our daughter did not even recognize him. All the sacrifices I had to make in order to come to this country and to start a new life were all worth it, because I knew ... Read More »

The Unforgotten (Tonga)

It always dawned on me that once I leave, a part of me will be missing. Now a proud citizen of America, I must tell how and why I became the person that stands before you today. I am proudly known as Malia Imalata Tofavaha, mother of 4 wonderful kids, wonderful friend to many, and a soulmate to one. From ... Read More »

La Venida (Guatemala)

It was very hot in there and we had to wait for 3 days inside this tank, not knowing when I would get to see the world. I was born in Guatemala, a little town called Chimaltenango, where farming is still the way to go. The only way of living is crops, with only my mother and my grandfather. I was ... Read More »

The Family that Evolves (Mexico)

I do not remember what it was that was said; all I remember is the loud words being thrown at me. Many move to a different house with a somewhat easy transition. I moved to a different house illegally and uncomfortably. It was very difficult living in Mexico because my family had economic problems. My family members did not have ... Read More »

Hope (Mexico)

Before leaving he said to me, “If you have stuttered or looked down I would have rejected your visas.” I didn’t know what was going to happen at the immigration center. Me and my mom had to get approval stamps and give a believable reason to come here. Leaving Mexico was a blur. My home was in Mexico City, the heart ... Read More »

A Travel to the Past (Fiji)

I never wanted to leave Fiji, but my dad’s words got to me, and I knew I had to do this. There I was at the age of 45, ready to become a father for the first time. Ready to welcome my firstborn into the world, only to lose her before she was even born. All my hopes of ever ... Read More »

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