By nicolette B.
Grade 9, Pennsylvania
Country of Origin: Poland

Seymour Rechtziet was born in Lodz,
Poland in 1912. Seymour's family
wanted him to come to America where
there was more opportunities for him.
World War 1 had just ended and it was
a bad time in Europe. Seymour and his
father were going to come to America
in hope to make enough money to
bring the rest of their family to
America. Seymour and his father came
to America on a boat called The
Lapland. Seymour called it a miserable
two-week trip. His room was in
steerage, way down in the bottom of
the boat. It was uncomfortable and
overly crowded. He would go up on
deck all the time just to have room to
move around. They hit many big
storms along the way. It rained hard,
and he was wet, cold and shivering. He
caught a bad cold on the boat. Two-
weeks later they had arrived in
America in New York Harbor.
everybody was up on deck to see the
statue of liberty and cheer at the sight
of America. Seymour and his father
entered America at Ellis Island. When
they got there they first entered the
baggage room where their baggage
was left. After that they had to climb
the stairways to the great hall for what
the called the six second medical
exam. Then everybody had to had to
have a medical exam to find people
with contagious diseases or conditions
that wouldn't allow them to work. The
doctor discovered Seymour had a cold
and he wasn't allowed to leave with his
father. Other immigrants who didn't
pass the exams were sent back to
their homelands. When seymour finally
got to leave Ellis Island he was excited.
When he stepped off the boat he felt a
rush of joy. Soon after being in
America he started singing in concerts
to make money to help bring his
family to America. Seymour faced a
problem though. Not as many
immigrants were being allowed into
America. Seymour sang for president
Calvin Coolidge who helped bring his
family to America. They were going to
be a family again. Seymour went on to
become a star in Yaddish theater and
married Miriam Kressyn, who was also
a singer and immigrant. They were
married for 43 years. Seymour went to
Europe traveling as an actor, but he
never returned to poland.

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