Ellis Island

  • Thread starter Philippe Delaunoy
  • Start date


Philippe Delaunoy

Hi all,

Yesterday I saw a TV programme about Ellis Island. The programme was rather old - 1980. It shows the building where passengers had to "suffer" medical examinations and immigration questionnaire.

Ellis Island Buildings appeared to be abandoned, dirty and neglected. The ferry used by millions of immigrants was in the same state.

Is it still the case today ? Does it exist any restoration and/or redevelopment project ?

Best regards,


Mark Baber

Dec 29, 2000
Is it still the case today?

Fortunately not, Phil. The main building hs been restored and is now a magnificent museum/tribute to the millions of immigrants who passed through Ellis Island over the years. There's regular ferry service from both New York City and Jersey City.

There are a couple of web sites you may want to take a peek at, in particular the Ellis Island Immigration Museum site and the Statue of Liberty-Ellis Island Foundation site.
Sep 2, 2009
Phillippe & Mark:

As for the current condition of Ellis Island.

In 1995 I attended the Titanic International Convention in Newark, NJ. Durning this Convention members of the group that had chose to take a tour of various cruiseships in New York harbor at the time - Dreamland and ??? / which in turn was cancelled were treated to a complete tour of all the various buildings on the four islands that make up the Ellis Island complex.

As of 1995 only the Main Hall and a couple of small buildings had been restored and these are all on island number one. The Mail Hall and these buildings at the time only represented 10% of the buildings and space at Ellis Island.

At the time in 1995 the public was only allowed into the Great Hall. As far as I knew this is still the case in 2002 as the general public isn't allowed on any of the other islands or in any of the other buildings.

The detailed story of this tour and Ellis Island is in Titanic International's Voyage 21, of which several black and white photo's of the other building are shown.

I have scanned some of the images that I took back in 1995 and that were also published in Voyage 21 to show how it looked then and the state of the various other buildings

Ellis Island - The Great Hall
(taken from island three)
S. Anderson Collection, 1995

Sep 2, 2009

As for the area were the sunken ferry was in the late 1970's here is how it looked in 1995.

The Ellis Island Ferry Pier
(Taken from the non-public side)
S. Anderson Collection, 1995
Sep 2, 2009
The backside of the main isolation ward taken from a landing on the backside of a medical examining room.

S. Anderson Collection, 1995


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