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This interactive documentary integrates extensive archival footage, original documents and artifacts, glorious photographs, poignant remembrances of people who passed through Ellis Island, and interactive video vignettes that allow users to experience first-hand the trials and triumphs of immigration. The only production of its kind ever authorized by the Statue of Liberty-Ellis Island Foundation, The Ellis Island Experience captures the drama of the greatest migration in human history.
You can only imagine what it was like to be one of the 15 million people who came through the noisy, confusing place known as Ellis Island. Though we can't go back in time, the rich mixture of interviews, still photos and simulations found on this nicely designed CD/web site provide us a glimpse of what it was like. There are five fascinating chapters to explore: The Peopling of America, The Old World, The Voyage, The Golden Door and The Land of Dreams. Each chapter contains as many as 40 sections, consisting mostly of narrated slide shows, videotaped first hand accounts of immigrants and digitized images of historic memorabilia. The content and overall presentation is accurate, well-balanced from an editorial perspective and professionally done. The four simulations are great, putting you in the shoes of an immigrant who is being questioned by an officer. If you don't provide the right answers, you risk being delayed, or possibly deported. Features include the ability to search by keyword, a glossary of terms and access to a special web site that includes a chat room and occasional web casts of historians. Drawbacks are few and insignificant. They include a small screen size (640 by 480) and the need to register in order to access the web site. At press time, several parts of the site were still not functional, including the ability to look up relatives who came through the port. All in all, this is an outstanding reference on the topic of immigration. You might also be interested in visiting the Ellis Island web site: www.ellisisland.org (no formal connection to this CD).
Teaches: history of the United States (1892 to 1954), immigration
Age Range: 12-up Copyright © 2000 Children's Software Revue -- From Children's Software Revue® -- "Subscribe Now!"