Urban History of Overseas Migration in Habsburg Central Europe: Vienna and Budapest in the Late Nineteenth Century

In: Journal of Migration History

The complex routes taken by overseas migrants through nineteenth-century Central Europe included Vienna and Budapest as nodal points. In contrast to the ports of departure and arrival, and the role of labour migrants in urbanisation, the place of overseas migrants in larger urban histories of Vienna and Budapest remains largely unexplored. By using two case studies that represent the opposite sides on the spectrum of overseas travellers through Central Europe, this article aims to trace new directions such an exploration might take. Aiming to introduce the ‘spatial turn’ into the subject of overseas migration in Vienna and Budapest, it analyses how, on the local level, railway stations and the neighbouring areas functioned to accommodate shipping agencies, their agents and lodging houses, as well as the police, detention centres, and the local enterprise that helped to direct – facilitate or restrict – traffic through the urban fabric and between cities.

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    SchorskeFin-de-siècle Vienna 24–115; Maderthaner and Musner Unruly masses 51–67.

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    Maderthaner and MusnerUnruly masses68–85.

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    Meißl‘Hierarchische oder heterarchische Stadt?’ 330.

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    Meißl‘Hierarchische oder heterarchische Stadt?’ 336–346. This did not mean however that train stations never functioned beyond their capacity. On the transportation problems at Nordbahnhof and Ostbahnhof in Vienna see for example ‘K. k. österreichische Staatsbahnen (K. k. Nordbahndirektion)’ and K. k. Direktion für die Linien der Staatseisenbahn-Gesellfchast’ Illustriertes Österreichisches Journal 1 November 1914 4. For a much larger discussion on the adequacy of Budapest train stations and the plans of constructing a new central terminus see ‘A fővárosi pálya? rendezése’ Népszava 19 July 1907 5.

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    MeißlIndustrie und Eisenbahn5.

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    Tobias Brinkmann‘Travelling with Ballin: The impact of American immigration policies on Jewish transmigration within Central Europe 1880–1914’International Review of Social History 53 (2008) 459–484; Tobias Brinkmann ‘Why Paul Nathan attacked Albert Ballin. The transatlantic mass migration and the privatization of Prussia’s eastern border inspection 1886–1914’ Central European History 43 (2010) 47–83; Tobias Brinkmann (ed) Points of passage. Jewish migrants from Eastern Europe in Scandinavia Germany and Britain 1880–1914 (Oxford and New York 2013); Torsten Feys The battle for the migrants. The introduction of steam-shipping on the North-Atlantic and its impact on European migration (St. Johns 2013).

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    On 29 April 1904the Hungarian Parliament passed legislation specifying regulations and safety standards for emigrants to North America travelling through Fiume. Six month later they obliged all Hungarian emigrants to travel from Fiume on the ships of the Cunard Line. Because the Northern Cartel was still able to offer much cheaper travel the route was avoided whenever possible even despite the introduction of special emigrant trains from Budapest to Fiume that brought thousands of supernumerary emigrants to the heavily promoted port. See István Kornél Vida ‘The New World is an other world’: Hungarian transatlantic emigrants’ handbooks and guidebooks 1900–1919’ ahea: E-Journal of the American Hungarian Educators Association 6 (2013) 5–6.

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    Dániel and OroszAh Amerika! 67.

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    Dániel and OroszAh Amerika! 78–79.

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     See HanákMagyarország a Monarchiában350; also see Varga ‘A demográfiai átalakulás és a kivándorlás hatása’ 661–692.

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    Alois Hell‘Die Eröffnung des Bahnhofes der österreichischen Staatseisenbahn-Gesellschaft in Budapest’Bauzeitung für Ungarn (1877) 351–353; ‘Az osztrák államvasút budapesti indó háza’ Ország-Világ (1882) 114.

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    Gusztáv Zombory‘A Buda-kanizsai vasút indóháza Budán’Vasárnapi újság (1861) 205–206. On the Southern Line see Mór János Révai et al. (ed) Révai nagy lexikona: az ismeretek enciklopédiája 5 (Budapest 1911–1935) 401–402.

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