US Naturalization questions (more or less general) #general #records


Rick Zeckel
 

First question: My wife's grandmother came to the US in or around 1915 when she was less than 18 years old (the story is she lied about her age to get here). Her parents did not come with her, but I don't know if any other family member did. She married my wife's grandfather in 1921. The grandfather had come to this country years earlier and had already been naturalized. Census data from later years indicate that she was a naturalized citizen. Is it logical to assume that since her parents were not there to include her in a naturalization process that she would have had to become naturalized herself (as opposed to being naturalized by inclusion with someone else's petition)? 

Second question: I am seeking the naturalization papers of a number of individuals who would have gone through the process in the 1910s and 1920s. I went to the National Archives website but they have a notice that appears to say that as a result of current Covid-19 restrictions they will not be responding to on-line requests for document copies. It is not clear to me whether or not they will respond to requests for such documents (by mail, by phone, by carrier pigeon, however). Does anyone know whether they will provide the documents at all and, if so, how to request them?

Third question: On some Naturalization papers I do have they designate the ship, port, and date of their arrival in this country. Often times I can see copies of the manifests from the various genealogy sites (Ancestry, Family Search, MyHeritage, etc.) to see what information they supplied (some of which is not available from other sources) and whether they may have traveled with other members of the family. I have also, from time to time, found the information using the Ellis Island database. I know that the information on the Naturalization papers, at least in terms of dates, is not always accurate, but typically the port of entry is. In some cases, however, I have been unable to locate such information. In one case I found a listing of Detained Aliens which were not included on the manifest itself and, probably as a result, was not listed in the database. Is that typical? If so, how can I find such listings for other ships?

Last question: Other than the genealogy sites and the Ellis Island database, are there other databases one could look at to try and obtain copies of manifests? A number of my wife's relatives entered the country through Baltimore but are not included in the genealogy site databases and, short of rummaging through the various microfilm archives (which are terribly disorganized), I don't know how to find that information.

Rick Zeckel
13919 Springmill Ponds Circle
Carmel, Indiana  46032
USA

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