International Journal of History Studies, vol.10, no.7, pp.103-126, 2018 (Peer-Reviewed Journal)
Between the late 19th and the early 20th centuries, thousands of Ottoman citizens from the Greater Syria region of the Empire, immigrated to the USA. At the beginning, the immigrants aimed to return back to their homeland after making a certain amount of money, however many of them stayed in the destination country. This article scrutinizes the social and economic integration of the Ottoman-Syrian immigrants to the host society. In addition it analyses both approaches of the Ottoman and American politicians and civil societies towards the Syrian immigrants issue. In the light of the Ottoman archival documents, American Immigration Records and the related news appeared in the American press of the time, the article points out that compared to the other European immigrant groups, the Ottoman Syrians were considered more successful in integration to the host society in terms of contribution to the labour force, diligence, as well as respect to the social norms. From the Ottomans’ perspective, the existence of the Syrians in the USA perceived as a concern because of their anti-Ottoman activities, abuse of dual nationality; and eroding the Ottoman image in America.