Re: Best approach to determining port of entry to US #general

Lisa Lepore <llepore@...>

Hi Judith -

There is excellent information about the US naturalization process
at the NARA website.

Generally, a person had to live in the US for 2 yrs before being eligible
to file a declaration of intent, then wait an additional 3 years before the
process could be finalized. Over the years, these requirements were
changed, and there were different rules for women and minors.

A good book on the subject is They Became Americans, by Loretto Szucs.

Not all people who filed a declaration of intent followed through
to become a citizen. My 2nd great grandfather never became
a citizen although he did file a declaration 1899.

As far as the dates given by our ancestors in census and other
records, we can't always rely on them to be correct.

The best we can do is use these dates as a guideline to finding
the passenger records, then branch out systematically to other
years and other locations. Unfortunately, there were many ports
in addition to Ellis Island where they could have arrived. Although
there are many records on line now, there are also many that are
only on film at NARA, and others which have been lost.

My great grandmother arrived in Providence RI around 1908, but
the records for the Port of Providence at this time do not exist
[or at least they have not been found yet]


----- Original Message -----
From: "Judith Lipmanson" <lipmanson@...>

Alan's post brings up an interesting question: what was the average
amount of time between Declarations of Intent and Petition for
Naturalization -- in NY, app. 1900?

Judith Lipmanson

Subject: Re: Best approach to determining port of entry to US

Naturalization Papers. In my own case my GF's Declaration of Intent
(first papers) had the date off by one week, but the Petition for
Naturalization (final papers) had the correct date. In addition to port of
entry, these papers told me the date of arrival, the approximate date of
departure, the name of the ship, where the ship embarked from, the
birthplace of my GF, his birthdate, current residence, occupation, age, his
original name, and his wife's birthyear. For me, most of this was a
treasure trove of new information.
I had also spent much time on the Ellis Island web site with a fruitless
search, until his Naturalization Papers told me he arrived in Boston. With
the info >from his papers I've ordered the passenger list >from my local FHL
branch and it should be arriving any day now.
Alan Glick >>>

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