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"Will Visit Native Land" from The Greenfield Recorder

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Before 1920, about thirty percent of immigrants to the United States came not with the idea of permanently settling, but instead with making enough money to restart their lives in their native lands. Before the First World War (1914-1918), there were few travel restrictions hindering this process. But during the war travel between the U.S. and Europe became difficult, particularly to Poland which the German, Austrian, and Russian armies fought over for nearly the entire war. As a result, after the war many immigrants felt compelled to return to inspect whatever property they owned or to reconnect with their families or towns. This article describes how Joseph Murauski and Joseph Kozik, Polish-born residents of Turners Falls, decided in 1920 to return to Poland. Their plan to sell the lands they owned there suggests several things. For example, when they came to America they were apparently unsure of their prospects here and so did not sell the land they owned in Poland. Also, their intention to bring their families back to the United States speaks well of the prosperity they enjoyed here.


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