Naturalization Act of May 24, 1934

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.
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Naturalization Act of May 24, 1934

Post by pontecorvo1913 » 24 May 2011, 23:16

I have a few questions about Italian citizenship. I've some how managed to tie my brain in a big fat knot, so please excuse me if I sound like a drooling idiot.

My grandfather, Giovanni Battista Santopietro, was born in Pontecorvo, Italy in 1913.

He immigrated to the United States in 1921 with his mother, brother and sister.

In 1935 he marries my grandmother, Emma Ann Merciai 1935. She is born to a mother of Italian decent and a Italian father who may or may not have been naturalized at the time of her birth, we don't know. My grandmother is 18 at the time of her marriage and requires her mother's legal consent, which is obviously given.

In 1936 my grandfather applies for accelerated naturalization as the spouse of an American citizen based on an the Act of May 24, 1934. I know this for a fact because the clerk took the time to type it out on my grandfather's naturalization papers.

In 1937 my grandfather's naturalization petition is completed two weeks before my grandmother 20th birthday.

My mother is born in 1958 when my grandmother is 42 years old. My grandmother cried when she found out she was pregnant, because she thought she was done having babies.

My question are as follow:
1. Am I correct in thinking that my grandmother automatically received Italian citizenship when she married my grandfather?
2. Am I also correct in thinking that my grandmother was by Italian law a minor when her husband naturalized. If so who would be her legal rights to do her decision making. Her mother or her husband?
3. How do Italian and American naturalization laws overlap? Can my grandfather be granted citizenship through his wife, when his wife by marriage is an Italian citizen?

Here is a link to the interpretation of the Act of May 24, 1934 that applies to my grandfather: ... 47794.html
For everyone who has a subscription to footnote, you can view a copy my grandfather's naturalization records there under Northern Ohio 1937 petitions John Santopietro.

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Re: Naturalization Act of May 24, 1934

Post by mler » 25 May 2011, 20:28

1. I believe she did receive Italian citizenship when she married her Italian husband.
2. Even though she was a minor when her husband naturalized, she did not also naturalize since she was a US citizen by birth.
3. Your gf did not obtain US citizenship automatically; he had to go through a naturalization process, at which time he lost his Italian citizenship.

I'm not certain about any of this, but I think that's the way it works.

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