Saturday, October 11, 2008

Tribute paid to first Ellis Island immigrant

A recent article in the Daily News reports the "overdue salute" to an Irish woman who was the first immigrant to pass through Ellis Island. The Queens grave site of Annie Moore has been marked with an Irish blue limestone Celtic cross. As a 17-year-old from County Cork, Ireland, Moore was given $10 in gold when she passed through Ellis Island on Jan. 1, 1892, the article said. Historians long believed that the mother of at least 10 moved West and settled in Texas, but a dedicated genealogist debunked the myth while researching a documentary. In 2006, Moore was found in an unmarked grave in the cemetery, buried with six of her children.

"She stands for the countless hundreds of thousands of Irish people who crossed the Atlantic and settled here in New York," said Niall Burgess, Irish consul general. Ellis Island was the gateway to America for more than 12 million immigrants. As many as 5,000 people a day passed through the processing center at its peak in the early 1900s.

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