March 28, 1868


Immigrants are more than welcome in Virginia. These immigrants will help strengthen Virginia rapidly as they are steady and organized workers, more so than black citizens.


Immigrants. The New York Tribune, noticing the arrival of German immigrants who intend to settle in Virginia, says: " The welcome " promise is that thousands of these frugal and industrious people will follow in " the footsteps of their brethren, and aid " in making Virginia what she ought long " ago to have been, the wealthiest of the " sisterhood of States." This prediction, we doubt not, is very earnestly uttered by a man who is as earnestly espousing the measures of Congress, which must necessarily retard its fulfilment ! Yet we trust to see it realized in a few years; for the superior race in the State must triumph, and its wisdom and enterprise be successfully devoted to the general prosperity. The subject of receiving and providing for immigrants-providing for them so that they will be contented, and so happily disposed that their energy and perseverance may not be depressed or checked-deserves the patient and enlightened consideration of our people. We have therefore given our views on the subject; but the matter cannot be too earnestly pressed upon the public attention. Immigrants must be disposed of in a manner suited to their tastes and habits. They are not extravagant; but, on the contrary, highly economical. As laborers, they are more steady and quiet than blacks, and require that some order and system shall be preserved in their lodging and finding. Quarters, such as may be kept well ordered, and a board that may have the semblance at least of white men's homes, in which there shall be enough without waste, and in the enjoyment of which there shall be sufficient conventionality to command decorum, should be positively maintained. However frugal the fare, if this mode of life is carried out the immigrant must be content. On the large farms the hands without families should at their meals be assembled at a table. On small ones the farmer will have to learn to seat the white laborer at his own table. He will not make money unless he eats with his laborers and comes and goes with them. If the farming community will pursue a system such as will achieve the objects above described, and congregate in neighborhoods enough immigrants to form a community with its social intercourse and its church, the tide of immigration will flow in rapidly. The immigrant will be content, and of course industrious and faithful. But if he is not so provided as to be contented, he will not " stick," but soon depart and seek another home. The subject is deeply interesting to the fanner. It should be well studied.
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Mallory Haskins




“Immigrants,” Reconstructing Virginia, accessed November 26, 2022,