English ports of departure

English ports of departure

Departure of Italian immigrants from French and English ports

A large number of Italian immigrants left for the Americas from French and English ports for various reasons:

– Not always what was nearer was easier to get to. Italian immigrants from some regions found it very difficult to get to the port of Genoa because the railway was in very bad conditions. – Our ancestor perhaps tried their luck in France, because of the short distance and then decided to travel to the Americas.

See the port of departure of these Italian immigrants who entered the USA

The Italian might have left from the French ports of Le Hâvre, Cherburg, Nantes, Marseille, Boulogne and even Burdeos. As well as from ports such as Liverpool, Southampton or Glasgow in the United Kingdom.

The Passenger Lists Leaving UK 1890-1960 database gives access to records with more than 30 millions of passengers arriving from different European countries and departing from British ports.

There are several reasons why the Italians were embarked from England to North and South America.

  • From the beginning of the 19th century the net of ports and transports became a multinational weft, being the French ports and those of North Europe the ones which cover the most of transoceanic transport (Marseille, Le Havre, Bremen, Hamburg, Liverpool), specially those which covered a direct way to USA.
  • The big navigation companies were owned by English, French and German capitals. English navigation companies (Prince Line, Dominion Line, White Star Line, Cunard Line, and Anchor Line) and the Germans (Hamburg America Line, Lloyd Bremen) used to stop in Italian ports. All of these companies had an agency in Italy and there was a net of immigration agents, who, in absence of an immigration law (until 1901), knitted real nets of intermediaries in the country.

On the years 1912-1913, when the migratory flux was in the top, few less than a 50% was covered by those English navigators. And Liverpool was one of the ports which covered most of the overseas transport.

Storia dell’emigrazione italiana – Di Piero Bevilacqua, Andreina De Clementi, Emilio Franzina. Pubblicato da Donzelli Editore, 2001