(Original post by Josb)
The level of qualification required to find a job in the USA in the 19th century and until the 1970s was not the same as in Germany today. Moreover, the immigrants you mention belonged to the broad same western culture; they also spoke or rapidly learnt English.
The million of "refugees" that have entered Germany are uneducated - even if they are, it's nothing comparable to German standards - and don't speak a word of German. Some people are trying to make us believe that these refugees are going to spontaneously replace retiring engineers in BMW factories. It's a very silly argument.
On the contrary, you probably get a better distribution of people from Syria than economic migrants that went to America before the 1980s. Most of the people that emigrated to America were poor and uneducated and could not get well paid work in their home countries. That was the reason why they emigrated.
Syrian refugees are a whole cross section of Syria society from the well educated middle class to the poor and uneducated. So there are higher proportion of educated middle class Syrian refugees than the emigrants to America.
Incidentally, emigrants arriving by ship to America in the early 20th century were only subject to immigration control if they travelled third class or steerage. First and second class passengers, that is the upper and middle classes could enter America freely without any immigration control