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Peddler’s license

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An 1897 article in a Wilmington newspaper titled “The Peddlers License: A Word or Two About How To Many Peddlers Fake It” details the perception of Assyrian peddlers. Today, many families have ties to first-wave immigrants arriving in North Carolina from the 1880s to 1940s. ┬áMany of these immigrants made money as peddlers. This article sheds light on the way in which many Wilmington residents and businesspeople viewed them as “foreigners…[who are] not a credit to a community by any means…” This is an important document reminding us of the environment within which many first-wave immigrants worked to make a living in a new country.

4 responses on “Peddler’s license

  1. Raja Khalifah says:

    Caroline,
    This is a little intriguing. Please take note that Assyrians are very different from Syrians, and they could have come from northern Syria or Iraq or possibly even Turkey as well as from Lebanon. They speak their own language and have their peculiar ancient religion (prevalent at one time) that differs from standard Christianity. It is worth researching. Of course, the article could have mistakenly meant to say Syrians, but I am not so sure given the name of the person they quoted. In any case, Assyrians should NOT be equated automatically with Lebanese or Syrians, although pockets of them have settled there. Many thanks for sharing these great clips.

  2. Raja Khalifah says:

    Caroline,
    This is a little intriguing. Please take note that Assyrians are very different from Syrians, and they could have come from northern Syria or Iraq or possibly even Turkey as well as from Lebanon. They speak their own language and have their peculiar ancient religion (prevalent at one time) that differs from standard Christianity. It is worth researching. Of course, the article could have mistakenly meant to say Syrians, but I am not so sure given the name of the person they quoted. In any case, Assyrians should NOT be equated automatically with Lebanese or Syrians, although pockets of them have settled there. Many thanks for sharing these great clips.

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