New online database: Migration to New Worlds

DMU Library & Learning Services has set up access to a new online database called Migration to New Worlds. This resource is provided via an agreement with Jisc and the publisher, Adam Matthew.

Migration to New Worlds explores the movement of peoples from Great Britain, Ireland, mainland Europe and Asia to the New World and Australasia. Split across two modules, and including collections from 26 archives, libraries and museums, Migration to New Worlds brings together the movement and memories of millions across two centuries of mass migration.

 

Migration to New Worlds: The Century of Immigration concentrates on the period 1800 to 1924 and covers all aspects of the migration experience, from motives and departures to arrival and permanent settlement. To supplement this, the collection includes early material such as the first emigration ‘round robin’ from 1621 and letters from late eighteenth-century merchants and travellers in the United States. Some later material is also available, including ocean liner and immigration depot photographs from the mid-twentieth century.

The collection presents a unique insight into the personal stories of migrants during this period. Letter collections, travel journals, diaries and oral histories provide a wealth of first-hand accounts for research into emigration experiences and the hardship of settlement. These are supplemented by scrapbooks, government papers, hand-drawn maps, watercolours, objects, emigration pamphlets, shipping papers and rare printed material which provide significant context to government legislation, commercial interests and living conditions for migrants during this period.

Significant material on the movement of Indian and Chinese indentured labourers is included from The National Archives. The complete War and Colonial Department and Colonial Office: Emigration Original Correspondence files cover both the emigration and remigration of indentured labourers and all printed material is fully text-searchable.

Migration to New Worlds: The Modern Era begins with the activities of the New Zealand Company during the 1840s and presents thousands of unique original sources focusing on the growth of colonisation companies during the nineteenth century, the activities of immigration and welfare societies, and the plight of refugees and displaced persons throughout the twentieth century as migrants fled their homelands to escape global conflict.

This later chapter of the migration story is brought to life through organisational papers, providing detailed insight into the daily running of services for new immigrants (particularly in the United States); government correspondence and pamphlets encouraging immigration to Australia, New Zealand and Canada; oral histories, objects and accounts documenting key personal reflections on European migration experiences and correspondence, scrapbooks and journals outlining colonisation schemes in New Zealand and the United States.

The database can be accessed directly using a DMU Single Sign On account via the following link at http://www.library.dmu.ac.uk/Resources/Databases/index.php?page=164&id=3776. The majority of full text content available in the database is also indexed in the Library Search service on the DMU Library website.

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I work in the Content Delivery Team at De Montfort University Library. I manage DMU Library's e-resources portfolio and I am involved in library systems admin, collating resource usage statistics and troubleshooting. All comments are my own.