Meet Annie

But though Annie's descendants believed that there were actual photographs of Annie in existence, searches did not turn up any as the Annie story rolled from one sensational revelation to the next.

Now, in a revelation in the truest sense of the word, the young girl who officially launched the story of Ellis Island on January 1, 1892, has been discovered anew in two photographs unearthed by family members.

One photo shows a woman with a baby in her lap. The inscription on the back is "Ma Schayer." Annie's married name was Schayer and the child in the photo is likely one of the at least eleven children she bore in a hard scrabble life lived entirely on Manhattan's Lower East Side.

The second photo, shown above, is believed to be that of Annie in her later years (she died in 1924). It was found in a scrapbook by a great-granddaughter, Maureen Peterson, who lives in New Jersey. This photo is inscribed "Mama Schayer" on the back

Annie descendent Julia Smith Devous, who lives in Phoenix, told the Echo that the discovery of the photos had caused great excitement in the family and that copies had been sent to all the descendants.

For many years the historical record focused on an Annie Moore who had died in Texas. Ellis Island Annie never left New York and was buried in an unmarked grave in Calvary Cemetery, Queens. A headstone was placed on the grave amid great ceremony in October 2008.

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