1 Reply Latest reply on Dec 21, 2020 1:26 PM by Cara Jensen

    Seeking grandfather's date of entry into US & naturalization papers

    Arthur Giordano Newbie

      I am trying to find my grandfather's arrival into the US and also when he became a citizen. I have his proper name, date of birth, town where he was from and an ID card issued by the US Customs Service, Port of New York on April 1, 1918. It also has a number under his picture. Any help is greatly appreciated in getting me started. I wish to start the process of filing for dual citizenship with Italy. Thank you.

        • Re: Seeking grandfather's date of entry into US & naturalization papers
          Cara Jensen Tracker

          Dear Mr. Giordano,


          Thank you for posting your request on History Hub!


          Beginning on September 27, 1906, the responsibility for naturalization proceedings was transferred to the Federal courts. If a naturalization took place in a Federal court, naturalization indexes, declarations of intention (with any accompanying certificates of arrival), and petitions for naturalization will usually be in the custody of the National Archives facility serving the state in which the Federal court is located.


          Unfortunately, no central index exists. To ensure a successful request, please include the name of petitioner (including known variants); date of birth; approximate date of entry to the US; approximate date of naturalization; where the individual was residing at the time of naturalization (city/county/state); and country of origin.


          Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and pursuant to guidance received from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), NARA has adjusted its normal operations to balance the need of completing its mission-critical work while also adhering to the recommended social distancing for the safety of NARA staff. As a result of this re-prioritization of activities, you may experience a delay in receiving an initial acknowledgement as well as a substantive response to your reference request. We apologize for this inconvenience and appreciate your understanding and patience.


          In most cases, the National Archives will not have a copy of the certificate of citizenship. Two copies of the certificate were created – one given to the petitioner as proof of citizenship, and one forwarded to the Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS).


          Certificates of citizenship were issued by the Federal courts until October 1991 when INS took over responsibility for naturalization proceedings. All INS records are now overseen by the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). USCIS maintains duplicate copies of court records (including the certificate of citizenship) created since September 27, 1906 and may be requested through the USCIS Genealogy Program.


          Since you are pursuing dual citizenship, the Consulates are aware that USCIS does not provide certified copies.  Instead, you must present the photocopy of the naturalization certificate along with the USCIS Genealogy Program response letter and mailing envelope.  We suggest that you consult with the Italian Embassy’s Citizenship Jure Sanguinis page for more information. 


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