Over the years

Harold Hodson – 1933
In 1915 – 1 year old
In 1938 with his wife, Alberta (Bantz) Hodson



None of my ancestors came by way of Ellis Island

Unlike many Americans, I can state that none of my ancestors arrived by way of Ellis Island. In some ways, that leaves me feeling left out. I’ll listen with curiosity to others’ accounts with all the more amazement, by the way, for those of you who tell them.

On my dad’s side – the one presented in this blog – I can safely assume all of my ancestors, including the Irish line, arrived before the American Revolution. (There are a few nagging details regarding the Bahills and Zieglers I still need to nail down, but I see enough to be confident in my claim.)

To add to my focus, it’s likely that all of Dad’s ancestors arrived by way of the port of Philadelphia and later lived a time in a relatively small window within Chester, Lancaster, York, and Adams counties before pressing on.

On my mother’s side, the more recent arrivals included Germans a half-century before Ellis Island was established and Scots by way of Ontario.

All of this acknowledges the immigration to America holds a host of tales yet to be told.


What were your family’s portals? Do you have any entry encounters to relate? Were there earlier family members to welcome yours? What else should we know or considering concerning the experience?