The History of Albanians in US - 1900-1932

  • Albanians were the last people of Europe to see America as a better alternative to live and this is related to the fact that by the time they liked more the ancient tradition of migration in European countries. 

The first Albanian to set foot in America is an unidentified citizen from Korca who arrived in the US in 1876. After him, on November 1877 went to America the Albanian priest, Prend Doci. Both are pulled quickly from 'New World'.

US nucleus

But the first Albanian immigrant who settled in America served as the magnetic core for other Albanian immigrants. It was Kole Christopher from Katund village of Korca  who arrived in America in 1884. After six years immigrant Kole Christopher returned to his native village. But in 1892, he returned to America, along with 17 of his fellow villagers, who formed the nucleus of the Albanian diaspora in the US. In 1900 many other Albanians turned on the 'New World'.

Categories of immigrants

First Albanian immigrants in the US can be divided into two categories: economic migrants, who leave the homeland for money and political immigrants, who were forced to leave for political reasons. On the issue the which was the dominant category of immigrants, there were different opinions.


Powerful waves of emigration occured in 1904-1905 and 1909-1912, years these characterized by strong political tensions generated by the event that brought the declaration of independence, and in 1913-1914, especially the summer of 1914 when  South of Albania was invaded by the Greek army. In this period the Albanians were citizens of the Ottoman Empire and went to America with Ottoman passports, therefore on Us immigration lists they appear as Ottoman citizens. Another portion of immigration is registered as Greeks because of religious ties with the Patriarchate of Constantinople and of the concepts of the official Ottoman state, which the Albanians of Greek Orthodox faith were considered as Greeks. Furthermore, many immigrants got to US from Balkan countries, as Bulgaria, Romania, etc., where they had migrated long ago. As such, they came to America with non-Albanian identity documents.

The exact number

As a result of all these factors, it is difficult to find the exact number of Albanian emigrants who settled in America in the first decade of XX century XX. According to official Federal  documents of 1910, 625 Albanians settled in US. During the years 1911-1914 about 1528 Albanians reached US, while in 1915-1919 their number drops sharply to 694 people. The demographic structure of the diaspora is dominated by men, because having in mind they wanting to return back home, they did not got with them their wives and the rest of their family. The number of Albanian women in the United States increased gradually after 1920, when Albanians decided to stay in USas permanent residents.

The newspaper "The Nation"

According to the newspaper 'The Nation' first child of ALbanian parents in US was born in January 1908 in the family of Koci Kristo of Korca. The majority of emigrants who came to US were from southern Albania. Economic empowerment of these migrant stirred plenty of other people to keep their ezes on the 'New World'. After 1905, commercial interests was an important factor that induced the organized emigration of Albanians to US.

Where did immigrants settled

Although US immigration law in 1907 forbidding the arrival of immigrants in the US with borrowed money,  Albanians who often traveled with borrowed money were able to resist in the most part, mostly they declared to US Customs that the money of the trip were provided by their parents or their relatives who live in US. The first Albanian immigrants who came to America, settled in a large part in the city of Boston and even in southern and western part of the city. After Boston, they settled in other cities or towns of Masaçustes state. Un Important center of Albanian emigrants became New England (New England).


For a relatively short period of a part of Albanian immigrants, certainly more capable, managed to discover the secrets of the functioning of the economy of a country that provide opportunities without borders, they began to deal with trade. According to the newspaper 'The Nation' by the end of 1907 the Albanians were widespread in 12 US cities. Un important factor for the integration of Albanians in the United States was the advertising published in the newspaper 'The Nation', which echoed Albanian businessmens who lived in different cities of America. The lifestyle of emigrants is also interesting. All fellows at the end of the trip gathered in the same residences. This phenomenon is related to the fact that a peasant or an Albanian citizen in America became back very quickly in an attractive reference for other compatriots.



Set foot on American soil in 1876. According to some sources, the Albanian was from Korca and then changed the destination being moved to South America and ending later in Argentina


Was second Albanian, who set foot on US soil in 1889 or in 1884. It was Koli (Nicolas) Christopher. It is the first Albanian immigrant who is registered and recognized officialy.


Is the number of Albanians who lived in America in 1900, in the city of Massachusetts. The origin of these Albanians were mainly from the south.


The price of a ticket traveling from Albania to the United States.


The number of Albanians who were forced to dwell everyone in a room just arrived in the United States. The rooms had many functions like home, hospital and school.


The number of Albanians by the US statistics had emigrated and lived in the United States in 1910. This was the first group of Albanians who arrived and were integrated into American life.


The number of Albanians which managed to emigrate from Albania to the United States during three consecutive years between 1911-1914.

50 thousand

The number of Albanians calculated at the end of the First World War. These figures are derived from the researcher Haris Silajdzic. A significant figure, considering the small number of Albanian population in those years.

30 thousand

Was the number of Albanians according Faik Konica in 1920. In the United States during these years was a watershed and a large influx of Albanians who flee their country devastated by war and armed conflicts.

1 thousand

The number of women in 1920, 30 thousand were in in 1920. A rare figure that is made possible by the American state statistics. But, however, a small number when considering the large number of men.


The number of Albanians naturalized in 1920, who had managed to obtain US citizenship. Are first Albanians who got US passport and became Americans.


Percentage of Albanians who were illiterate. A high figure, but one should consider that the US got the poorest emigrants of the time. Source: Vatra.
The History of Albanians in US - 1900-1932 The History of Albanians in US - 1900-1932 Saturday, January 23, 2016 Rating: 5
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