When it comes to New York City, there’s no denying that the immigrants who have made this city home have shaped it into one of the world’s great cities. The significance of this phenomenon will be explored in-depth in “This is Ellis Island: Exploring the Immigrant Experience and Influence on NYC,” a symposium taking place this Wednesday, June 15 at 11 AM on Ellis Island.

A Festival of NY event, “This is Ellis Island” convenes a panel of experts to discuss the exhilarating, frightening chance that immigrants took arriving on a foreign shore to see the Statue of Liberty, the lamp beside the golden door, beckoning them toward a new home. The event also features a film screening of “Unforgotten Ellis Island” – the newest film in a series by filmmaker Aaron Asis.

Image courtesy Aaron Asis and Green Ghost Studios

This compelling panel discussion on Ellis Island, featuring the insights of the American Family Immigration History Center at Ellis Island’s Stephen Lean and the Senior Director of Programs and Interpretation at the Tenement Museum, Kathryn Lloyd – both joined by a National Park Service Ranger – charts the immigrant experience. Panelists will offer some of the reasons for why immigrants arrived to New York City, their Ellis Island experiences and how they found a new home in New York City’s Lower East Side tenements. Untapped New York Insiders will have special access to a tour introducing the newly renovated Statue of Liberty museum (join and get your first month free with code “JOINUS.”) We have limited availability for this special VIP tour of the Statue of Liberty Museum sponsored by the Liberty Ellis Foundation at 8am, so be sure to join Untapped New York Insiders for the chance to join in thouguh our members-only Facebook group.

In Aaron Asis’ “Unforgotten Ellis Island,” the filmmaker explores how history and access inspire personal connections to Ellis Island continues to explore the outsized impact that this small outcropping of rock has had on our nation. When Ellis Island originally opened back in 1892 it served as the first point of entry for millions of new Americans coming from across the Atlantic. The island, right at the entrance of New York harbor, served for decades as our nation’s first inspection station for immigration. Asis’ explores the legacy of the island and its incredible cultural and historical impact.

Barges arrive to Ellis Island pre-1910. Courtesy the Statue of Liberty Museum/Ellis Island.

Don’t miss the chance to experience this compelling symposium, talk and film firsthand. “This is Ellis Island: Exploring the Immigrant Experience and Influence on NYC,” takes place Wednesday, June 15 at 11 AM on Ellis Island. Visitors can book ferry tickets to the island at Statue City cruises.

Also, be sure to check out our hidden secrets of Ellis Island Hospital Tour!