True Immigrant Stories: Young Teenager at Ellis Island

[This is another true immigrant story from my oral history collection, gathered as part of my research for the historical novel, Guardians of the Gate.  In 1925 at age 13, Heinz sailed alone from Bremen to live with his aunt and uncle in the United States. “We arrived on Election Day and our ship was … More True Immigrant Stories: Young Teenager at Ellis Island

True Immigrant Stories: Ida and Thomas Jefferson

[This is another true story from my oral histories collection of immigrants who came through Ellis Island as part of my research for my historical novel, Guardians of the Gate.] Ida Napolitano was just three years old when her father emigrated from Italy into the United States, with the plan to earn enough money for … More True Immigrant Stories: Ida and Thomas Jefferson

Personifying the American Dream and the American Spirit

I was asked an interesting question about how the characters in Guardians of the Gate convey the message of the American Dream and the strength of the human spirit. The easy answer lies in the immigrants going through Ellis Island, leaving behind poverty, repression, and limited life choices to pursue freedom and a better life … More Personifying the American Dream and the American Spirit

Ellis Island Employees Instead of Immigrants

As its title implies, Guardians of the Gate is primarily about the people who worked at Ellis Island and the numerous situations they faced while working on the island.  I’ve been asked, though, why I didn’t write this historical novel from the perspective of the immigrants instead. Certainly, the millions of immigrants who came through … More Ellis Island Employees Instead of Immigrants