Washington, D.C.

Washington, D.C., is unlike any other city in the United States. Having been established in the 1790s specifically as a new capital city for a new republic, it had no long-standing commercial base.

Toronto, Ontario

Toronto, with a municipal population of 2,481,494 and a census metropolitan population of 4,647,960 (2001) is Canada’s largest and most diverse city.

San Francisco, California

San Francisco was the first great immigrant city of the American West, receiving people from around the world during the California gold rush of 1848–49.

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Philadelphia became in the 1680s William Penn’s “greene countrie towne,” the capital city of the ethnically diverse Pennsylvania colony.

New York, New York

From its earliest days, New Amsterdam, the precursor to New York City, was one of the most heterogeneous places on earth.

New Orleans, Louisiana

New Orleans was one of the most important ports of entry for immigration to the United States during the 19th century, mainly because of its location at the mouth of the Mississippi River, which provided ready access to the interior of country.

Montreal, Quebec

Montreal, the second largest city in Canada and one of the largest French-speaking cities in the world, had a population of 3,380,645 in 2001.

Miami, Florida

As the southernmost metropolitan area on the eastern seaboard of the United States, Miami became one of America’s principal magnets for immigrants in the 20th century.

Los Angeles, California

With a population of 16,373,645 at the turn of the 21st century, the Los Angeles metropolitan area was second only to the New York metropolitan area in size.

Houston, Texas

Long a sleepy backwater nestled on Galveston Bay, by the turn of the 21st century Houston had grown to more than 1.9 million (more than 4 million in the metropolitan area), making it the fourth largest city in the United States and the second busiest port.

Detroit, Michigan

Located on the Detroit River, which separates the United States from Canada, Detroit became one of the great industrial cities of the United States by the end of the 19th century, attracting immigrant labor from eastern Europe and the Middle East.

Chicago, Illinois

For most of the 19th and 20th centuries, the city of Chicago was one of the most desirable destinations for immigrants.

Boston, Massachusetts

The capital of Massachusetts since colonial times, Boston has also been an important immigrant city since its founding in 1630.

Baltimore, Maryland

The city of Baltimore’s population has been in decline throughout much of the 20th century.