If your ancestors came to the US before the 1870s or so, were they "illegal" immigrants?

The United States really didn't have immigration laws or an immigration service before the late 1800s (when immigrants flooded here in crazy numbers). Therefore, since there weren't any laws regarding immigration before that time, were immigrants who came here during that "illegals"? Was Geoge... show more The United States really didn't have immigration laws or an immigration service before the late 1800s (when immigrants flooded here in crazy numbers). Therefore, since there weren't any laws regarding immigration before that time, were immigrants who came here during that "illegals"? Was Geoge Washington an illegal immigrant? He never asked the Native Americans if he could come here...and he didn't even try to learn their languages! What a scummy guy! How dare he and those Pilgrims on the Mayflower migrate to the United States in search of a better life! Without any paperwork or ID! Native Americans had their own "laws" even if they were not written down on paper like The Constitution, for example. These were customs and rules within each tribe regarding what was approprpriate and what wasn't. I'm fairly certain that having illegal immigrants from Europe massacre your tribe and bring deadly diseases with them wasn't one of the native's "laws".....
10 answers 10