American Scene: From Ellis Island to Lax

From Ellis Island to Lax

It is said that nearly half of all living Americans can track their ancestry through the imposing Great Hall on Ellis Island, once the nation's largest immigration station. No wonder, then, that a drive to make a national museum of the cracked, peeling facility, along with its famous next-door neighbor, the Statue of Liberty, has not gone wanting for funds. Ellis Island, Statue of Liberty -- their very names seem to pop latches off pocketbooks.

Look around. If not Ellis Island, what is a nation of immigrants, to say nothing of sentimentalists, left with to enshrine? A Customs desk at Kennedy?...

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