Much like the United States did, Argentina welcomed vast waves of immigrants in the late 19th and early 20th centuries—mostly Italians and Eastern Europeans as well as Middle Easterners. The Immigrant Hotel was the name given to a series of buildings where new arrivals were received and temporarily housed. Sort of an Argentine Ellis Island, it sits near the old docks in the Retiro district. The hotel's function changed in 1953, and today the building is home to the National Museum of Immigration. Photographs, record books, suitcases and other personal items help tell the stories of the immigrants who came here before the early 1950s.