Document Analysis

Over 25 million Italians have emigrated between 1861 and 1960 with a migration boom between 1871 and 1915 when over 13,5 million emigrants left the country for European and overseas destinations.
jennabet
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Document Analysis

Postby jennabet » 10 Aug 2010, 01:54

Can someone lend some insight on the attached document? It was received from the Prothonotary of Cameron County, PA. Both copies have the raised seal of the Court of Common Pleas of Cameron County. I initially asked for any naturalization records on file but received what looks to me like a Declaration of Intention only and that because the Prothonotary could provide nothing else, that possibly this immigrant was never naturalized. OR is it possible that in 1903, a Declaration was all that was required for citizenship? An insight will be appreciated. I have already sent off to Washington, DC for proof of non-naturalization. Grazie.

jennabet
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Re: Document Analysis

Postby jennabet » 10 Aug 2010, 02:06

Attachment is too big. Here is what it says:
State of Pennsylvania, Cameron county, SS:
Be it remembered that before the Prothonotary of the Court of Common Pleas of said County, personally came John Doe, an alien, a native of Italy who upon his solemn oath doth depose and say that he was born in Italy in the year A.D. 1870, and is now about the age of 30 years; that he was a member of ____ and owed allegiance to The King of Italy that he migrated from Italy and arrived at New York on or about the 29 day of June A.D. 1900 and that it is his bonifide intention to become a citizen of the United States and to renounce allegiance and fidelity to any foreign Price, State, Potentate or Sovereignty whatever and particularly to The King of Italy, whereof his is now a subject.
Sworn and subscribed before me this 3rd day of April 1903, Prothonotary
True and correct copy certified from the Records of Cameron Co, PA, Prothonotary, Mary Grace

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johnnyonthespot
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Re: Document Analysis

Postby johnnyonthespot » 10 Aug 2010, 10:37

This thread ( http://italiangenealogy.com/Forums/viewtopic/t=17142/ ) has lots of tips on how to post large images on this site.

What you have is a Declaration of Intent and, as you crrectly gueseed, it is an indication that your ancestor began the process of becoming a citizen but by no means proves that he completed the process.

The bad thing here is the date, 1903. The consulate knows that USCIS does not have any naturalization records for the period prior to September (?), 1906, so a "No Records" letter from USCIS will not be sufficient to prove anything (it never is sufficient, but especially so in this case).

You are going to need No Records Found (regarding actual naturalization) letters from the Prothonotary of Cameron County, the local courts in every area in which your ancestor resided, the National Archives, and quite possibly other sources as well.
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