Ellis Island Immigration Museum
How do you share the immigrant experience?
Ellis Island symbolizes the spirit of hope, renewal and opportunity associated with immigration. In the new Peopling of America Center, ESI Design invites visitors to personally experience the immigrant journey through a creative combination of dynamic video, interactive installations, ambient sound and interpretive graphics.
The People of America Center is an expansion to the National Museum of Immigration, also designed by ESI, which opened in 2001 and relates the history of Ellis Island (1892–1954). The new galleries, which opened in 2011 and 2015, bookend the Ellis Island era by telling the story of American immigration before the processing station opened and after it closed.
ESI Design used the metaphor of a journey as the interpretive framework to take visitors through the exhibits, focusing on five stages of the immigrant experience — Leaving, Making the Trip, Arrival, Struggle & Survival, and Building a Nation .
Highlights of ESI Design’s work include the ‘Global Migration’ exhibit, featuring a stunning, 5-foot radiant acrylic globe in which HD video is projected onto the inside of the sphere illustrating human migration patterns. In ‘The Journey: New Eras in Immigration’ exhibit, visitors can watch videos of immigrants telling their stories and also trace their own ancestors’ journeys.
The Peopling of America Center enables all visitors, regardless of when or how their families arrived in America, to make a personal connection to Ellis Island, and to tap into the immigrant experience across centuries and cultures.