US Immigration
-3 main eras of immigration

Quota Laws
''Immigration acts of 1965 and 68 eliminated quotas but set up hemisphere quotas and
then in 1978, countries were limited to 20,000 per country with a total of 290,000 for the

Brain Drain
This is the loss of intelligent and skilled workers in LDCs


Internal Migration of the United States

What Is Internal Migration?

Interregional and Intraregional Migration

Internal migration can be divided into interregional migration and intraregional migration.

* Interregional migration is the movement from a country’s region to another region.
* Intraregional migration is the movement within only one region.

Both these types of migrations usually tend to occur due to desired improvements in life after disastrous environmental and political conflicts, better economic conditions, or changes in lifestyles. Interregional and intraregional migrations are both voluntary opposed to forced migration and the migration transition.

The Western Frontier, Seventeenth Century to Nineteenth Century

From the times of the earliest European settlements, a western-moving edge of newly available land triggered waves of migratory European-descended Americans in pursuit.


Interregional Migration and the Great Migration
Interregional migration is an example of rural to urban migration. An example of interregional migration would be The Great Migration.
This is an example of interregional migration because during the Great Migration, African Americans moved from one region of the U.S to another region on order to seek job opportunities and leaving racism behind. Since the 1920’s, the African American population has changed from being almost entirely rural, to more the 90% urban.

Migration to the Cities

From Urban to Suburban


Sun Belt Migration
Note: Hundreds of thousands of retirees have settled there as well. Florida has always had a large retired population, but from 1990 to 1998, Nevada's over-65 population jumped 55 percent, while Arizona's gained 29 percent, Utah's grew by 22 percent, and the elderly in Colorado and New Mexico increased by 21 percent.

United States and Internal Migration
The 2000 United States Census Bureau published a special report on domestic worker migration, with a focus on the movement of young, single, college-educated migrants. The data shows a trend of such people moving away from the Rust Belt and northern Great Plains region towards the West Coast and Southeast. The area with the largest net influx of young, single, college-educated persons was the San Francisco Bay Area.

The country as a whole does not experience a large-scale brain drain to other countries, since it is often the destination of skilled workers migrating from elsewhere in the world. However, the U.S. (like other countries) have been experiencing widespread rural depopulation in the past few decades which has seen many rural workers with high skills move to urban/suburban areas - this has negatively impacted rural communities in the U.S.

Cultural Component


Lutherans in the Upper Midwest
Catholics in the Northeast and the Middle West
Catholics in the Southwest
Mormons in Utah and parts of Idaho
Catholics in southern Florida
Catholics in southern Louisiana
A lack of change in rural areas
Lack of cultural change in the south
The nature of the Baptist religion
Patterns of Europeans


The Mormons were a new religion and the other, more established Christians did not like their beliefs (polygamy, differing views on what Christ did and where he went). The Mormons attempts to convert people would have caused conflicts. By going out west to Utah, they could separate themselves from others and put themselves outside of the authority of others and establish their own society.

Also note that others were not likely to follow the Mormons as they went to a harsh, arid climate. The area they went to was rural and did not attract people during the 18 to E1900s as it lacked the urban areas and industrialization found in the Midwest and Northeast at that time. Even today, there are not many large cities in Utah.

Germans and Scandinavians chain migrated to the area of the upper-Midwest. In part to stay together within their culture and in part as a result of railroad companies and state governments that recruited groups as a whole to work in those areas. It should be noted that that northern climate is similar to the climate the one found in the upper-Midwest. They were already acclimated to that environment (preadaptation).

Note that the areas that Lutherans dominate today, are still dominant because they are rural. Understand that rural areas used to attract people but farming areas even with good climates and ideal conditions do not attract people past the late 1800s as people are no longer going for those jobs
Lack of later in-migration


Baptist religion matured and attracted adherents early in the history of the South
-no requirement for credentialed clergy meant it was easy to start and easy to put some of your own beliefs into this yet still be Baptist
-Appealed to African Americans as they could make their own churches / other churches excluded them
-Also appealed to racist whites that could form their own Baptists churches to go along with their pro-slavery ideology

Special note on the South: The south was more openly antagonistic towards outsiders which kept immigrants out until most recently. The south also did not encourage labor to go there in the 1800s.

Roman Catholics
Germans / Irish to the Northeast / Great Lakes in the mid-1800s
-Remember that this was the area creating jobs and cities at this time till the mid1900s
-Companies advertised for labor in Europe

Southern and Eastern Europe to Northeast / Great Lakes
-Remember that this was the area creating jobs and cities at this time till the mid1900s
-Advertises for immigrant labor because they will work for low pay/exploitable.

Hispanics and Filipinos to Northeast / Great Lakes (Cities)
-Drawn to the urban areas for cheap labor and third sector jobs (services)

Latin America / Mexico to the Southwest
-Proximity to the Mexico/Latin America reflects influence of the gravity model, distance decay
Hispanics to Florida
-proximity to countries like Cuba and Central and South America
-chain migration
-access to service sector jobs
-refugees from Cuba come over due to the connection of the United States to Cuba and failed attempts of the US to use Cubans to overthrow the government (Bay of Pigs)

Special Note on Hispanics – outside of urban areas and in particular in areas with high concentrations of Hispanics, you will find Hispanics in rural areas. That is also because Hispanics are more likely to work in jobs in agriculture


Minorities are not evenly distributed across the United States. Some are more dominant in certain ares of the United States while not apparent at all in other areas.

The reasons for lack of in-migration noted above for differing religions would also affect minority populations. Recent minorities, Asians and Hispanics will notably be absent from rural areas. Hispanics are sometimes an exception to his as they often come to America for agricultural jobs. but in areas lacking agricultural jobs and that are not close to Mexico, you will notice a lack of Hispanics.
-in the South, Hispanics and Asians have long had the perception that the area is hostile towards outsiders / minorities
-until recently, the South was less urban and had a lack of factory jobs (this has changed in the last 25 years
-Raventstein would note that migrants would go to a large city which the South largely did not have until recently
-African Americans are dominant in the rural southeast due to the history of slavery but they are largely absent from other rural areas of the United states
--hositle feeling and restrictive covenants and real estate practices kept them from going out into suburban or rural areas

The Great Migration
-brought African Americans to the cities / along with their cultures and traditions (Baptists as a minority religion in cities north of the traditional South)
-African Americans went to cities connected by rail to the North
--agriculture as a job was diminishing
--factory jobs up north (especially during WWII)
--Jim Crow laws pushed them out
--But even within the cities in the north, African Americans were segregated

-more likely to be in the Southwest (Mexicans in particular)
-Florida has a large Hispanic population as well (Cuban, South and Central America)
--Cuba has a special relationship with the United States (because of The Bay of Pigs and other issues with US involvement, the US has a more lenient wet foot / dry foot policy with Cuba.
-Ravenstein -outside of the southwest, Mexicans and Hispanics are more likely to go to urban areas
-Rural areas did not appeal as they lacked jobs

-since they originally started coming in the 1800s, Asians were more concentrated on the west coast
-Then they were restricted from migrating to the US until the late 1960s
-Ravenstein -outside of the west, they gravitate towards larger cities
-Rural areas did not appeal as they lacked jobs ,industry and cities

  • Note that the jobs attracting people would change over time