I am excited to be writing this – the first blog for the website of my photography book about New Hampshire’s immigrants!
Different Roots, Common Dreams: New Hampshire’s Cultural Diversity, will showcase photographs of immigrants (many of them refugees) that I have taken over the past three years. There will also be information about immigration in New Hampshire and stories of resettling in this state written by NH’s immigrants. The book will be released in the Fall of 2015.
This book is not just mine. I took the photographs, but the book really belongs to the immigrant families in the Granite State. They are the ones who generously invited me and my camera into their lives. They are the ones who have shared with me the joys and difficulties of their journeys to get here. They are the ones who have strengthened our towns and cities with cultural, ethnic and religious diversity.
I hope my photographs will last as an historic snapshot of immigrant communities in our state at this point in time. These families are part of a long legacy of newcomers to New Hampshire. Immigrants came from England and Scotland in the 1600s and 1700s; from Ireland, Canada and several European countries in the 1800s and early 1900s; and recently from Bhutan/Nepal, Burma, Burundi, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Iraq, Rwanda, Somalia, South Sudan, and many more.
Immigrants have made contributed to our state with a diversity of ideas; determination to secure a safe future for their families; clear focus on education for themselves and their children; and contributions to New Hampshire economy through jobs to support their families. We are lucky to count foreign-born residents among our friends and neighbors.
I will say more about the book’s contents in the next blog – so stay tuned! I will also share an occasional favorite photograph (they are all my favorites!) with each blog.
A young Burundi boy in Manchester is dressed up for a wedding.