NEW YORK (Oct. 13)
The overwhelming majority of the 813 refugees, including a substantial number of Jews, who came to the United States 11 years ago from Europe as the first admitted under the Displaced Persons Act of 1948, have become fully Integrated Americans, according to a new study, the results of which were made public yesterday. The study was made by The New York Times in cooperation with various refugee agencies, including the United Hias Service.
The group was the first of nearly 400,000 victims of Nasi and Communist persecution admitted to this country under special immigration laws. Their arrival on October 30, 1948 on the army transport, the General Black, was marked by the tooting of New York harbor whistles and greetings from the President. The study indicated that the General Black passengers quickly adopted American manners and attitudes and that almost all became citizens. Most of them learned English quickly. They were settled in communities throughout the United States and think of themselves as Americans, rather than as Europeans.
The United Hias Service, in reviewing the adjustments of the Jewish refugees on the General Black, said: “We are amazed at the resiliency with which those who have suffered years of persecution and homelessness have been able to enter our democratic land and become united with our people in productive citizenship.”
The study was made during a period of re-examination by private and official agencies of United States immigration problems, particularly in connection with United States participation in the World Refugee Year under United Nations auspices. The Office of Refugee and Migration Affairs of the U.S. Department of State reported that 713,531 displaced persons or refugees will have been admitted to the United States since World War II under special immigration laws. The quotas are nearly exhausted at present.
The Eisenhower Administration favors the expansion of the normal immigration quotas under which 154,857 persons may be admitted annually. However, of this number about 60,000 national quota numbers expire unused each year. The Administration asked Congress in 1957 for permission to enable the Attorney General to apply the unused quota numbers at his discretion but the request was not granted.