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John Quincy Adams on Immigration and American Values

John Quincy AdamsI highly encourage everyone to read this excellent letter from John Quincy Adams (at the time, Secretary of State) written in response to a letter from a well-to-do German who had written to him and said he would move to America if he was guaranteed a job. It is striking commentary from one of our earliest leaders and shows valuable insight into immigration as it was intended for our country. 

 It encompasses two main points. First, that all are welcome but they must get here of their own volition, at their own expense and with nothing promised other then the freedom and equality guaranteed to all. And second that all immigrants should come here with the understanding that they are coming to a country and embracing it’s morals and values. If they are going to be offended by our morals, traditions, or general way of life than they should not come here.

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