2 Replies Latest reply on Jun 21, 2019 10:57 AM by Becca Simons

    Trying to find immigration information/passenger list


      My grandfather arrived from Italy on July 6 of 1905 as a 12 yr old child, traveling alone. The passenger manifest shows he was detained, had a special inquiry and was deported on the same ship on July 11, 1905.


      The family story was that he came alone  as a 12 yr old child, nothing about deportation. If he was deported ,( the record certainly shows that this was the case), I can’t find anything more about his immigration.I have searched his name through Ancestry, Ellis, Nara, and only find his original arrival in 1905 and deportation.He certainly came back, because he married my grandmother, had two daughters  and ran his own business before his death in 1936.


      I am trying to apply for dual citizenship through him and these records are often requested.  Does anyone have any ideas or insight on he could have been deported, but then have no record of his return?

        • Re: Trying to find immigration information/passenger list
          joan stachnik Tracker

          HI Celeste, if you haven't already checked, you might want to look at the 1910 or 1920 census. It might give you his year of arrival for the second time. I've found some of these on Familysearch.org, a free service after you register. This site also has some immigration information, such as ship passenger lists other than New York.  Two of my grandparents arrived in New York, but the others came in through Baltimore and Galveston, so they were a bit more difficult to find.  Also if your grandfather became a US citizen, have you looked for his declaration of intent or petition for naturalization? These both should include his arrival date. If you want to share his name and city, I can do some looking also. Hope this is of some help, joan

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          • Re: Trying to find immigration information/passenger list

            Dear Ms. Barrett,


            Thank you for posting your request on History Hub!


            When your grandfather arrived on July 6 and was held for special inquiry, he was not formally admitted to the United States. therefore he could not have actually been deported. He was “rejected and returned.” Perhaps your grandfather was turned away because they deemed him likely to become a public charge.


            The differentiation between deportation and rejection is important to make because there will not be deportation proceedings, although there may be records of the Board of Special Inquiry (BSI) hearing. If records of the BSI exist, the best place to search will be the Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) Subject Index (Microfilm Publication T458) which references correspondence files that are part of the Subject and Policy Files series maintained by the National Archives in Washington, DC (Entry 9). For access to these records, please contact the National Archives at Washington DC via email at archives1reference@nara.gov.


            The US Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) has created a Quick Guide to finding INS correspondence files. You’ll see under bullet point two that there is some extra guidance given for researching individuals who had BSI hearings.


            There are a few possibilities for your grandfather’s official entry to the US. Since he was rejected and returned from Ellis Island (the most stringent of the US ports at the time) on July 11, it is possible that you might find him entering the US about two weeks later at Philadelphia, Baltimore, Boston, or via a Canadian Border crossing.  He also may have returned to Italy and come back on a different vessel. 


            Have you located your grandfather in 1910, 1920, and 1930 census records?  There is a citizenship column on the census forms that records year of immigration which might provide clues to narrow the time frame of his arrival.


            Do you know if your grandfather ever began the naturalization process by submitting a Declaration of Intention? If you know the city/state where your grandfather resided during his time in the US, you can submit a request to the NARA office covering that state to request a search of their naturalization holdings. This site will help connect you with the appropriate office for your search. If a Declaration exists, this should provide additional clues to your grandfather’s arrival.


            We hope this is helpful. Best of luck on your research!


            [Information provided by Elizabeth Burnes, Subject Matter Expert]

            2 people found this helpful