Iranian woman arrives in America in 1929
November 14, 2004
This is the text of a document from 1929 on
public display at Ellis
Island museum in New York. It records the arrival of Almos Baba
Shiman, an Iranian woman to America. Thanks to Ali Tavaf for sending
a photo of the
SHIMAN, Almos Baba, 21, Persian
Father: Baba Shiman
1239 Everett St
This Persian girl, who is supposed to be only 21
years old but who looks to me more like thirty, was detained because
an affidavit of support from
her father and $50. The Flint Institute referred her to us and we did the
The girl carried a suitcase which weighed about
30 pounds and a samovar bought in Batum [seaport in Russian Transcaucasia].
We separated her from the suitcase
and packed the samovar in a paper box.
The weather was very miserable with
a cold northeast wind and plentiful rain. She had nothing on
but a rayon sweater
to stand between herself and the elements. I found her a nice apple green
coat and a black velvet hat. It fitted her nicely over her bobbed
heavy, very curly
She was less than 5 feet tall, with a small face,
and a nose that might have been aquiline if it had been pointed.
Her small brown shrewd eyes and well
cut mouth spoke of intelligence and determination.
She started from Tabriz, Persia, in the early
part of July . From there she went to Batum, from there to
from there to Marseilles,
from there to Paris, from Paris to Cherbourg and then on to New York.
did not upset [her] very much except that she walked with a drooping
head. I joked about it and told her that it was no good to carry
her head so
low. She smiled
and said she would be better.