Naturalization, the act of investing an alien with the rights and privileges of a native-born citizen or subject. It is of two kinds, collective and personal. A collective naturalization takes place when a country or state is incor-ited in another country by gift, cession, or conquest. Thus, when England and Scotland were formed into one kingdom in the reign of Queen Anne, it. was declared by the fourth section of the act of union that subjects of the United Kingdom possessed thereafter all the rights, privileges, and advantages enjoyed by the subjects of either kingdom; and when Louisiana was ceded by France to the United States in 1803, it was provided by the third article of the treaty that its inhabitants should be entitled to all the rights and privileges of citizens of the United States; and a similar effect took place when the republic of Texas was annexed to and formed into one of the states of the American Union. Personal naturalization is where the privileges of a subject or citizen are conferred upon an individual by the license or letters patent of a sovereign or the act of a legislative body, or are obtained by the individual himself under a general law, upon his complying with certain conditions prescribed by the law. - Naturalization was practiced among the states of antiquity, and is found in the rudest forms of human society.
The North American Indians frequently adopted Europeans, and more frequently members of other tribes taken in war. The earliest account that we have of naturalization is among the Jews. It formed a part of their early legislation, as embodied in the books of Moses.
The knowledge we possess of the laws or customs of the great contemporary nations, the Egyptians, Assyrians, Babylonians, Phoenicians, and Persians, is too limited to enable us to know with certainty the policy they pursued upon this subject. - In Greece, during the heroic people had few or no privileges, and whatever was allowed to them appears to have been as freely extended to strangers. In the convulsions which followed these ages, naturalization was readily granted; hut as the differed down into compact and well organized communities, the value of citizenship became enhanced, and the privilege was more sparingly bestowed. In Athens, so far as can be gathered from the fragmentary information that has descended to us. there would seem to have been three kind, of naturalization: 1, the admission of an alien to membership in a deme or township by the vote of its inhabitants, at their convocation or general meeting, and the inscribing of his name upon the lexiarchic register or roll of the qualified citizens of the deme, kept by the demarch; 2, citizenship conferred by the state as a mark of distinction upon foreigners eminent for their virtues or talents, or who had rendered important services to the republic; 3, privileges, more or less qualified, extended to the inhabitants of other states, or to particular persons.
By the laws of Solon, none but those who were banished from their country for ever, and had with their families taken up their permanent abode in Attica, with the intention of practising some trade or profession, could be enrolled in the list of citizens. Afterward, however, the practice arose of bestowing citizenship as the gift of the state. It was conferred as an honorary distinction upon foreigners, admitting them to every privilege except that of holding the office of archon or priest, and did not imply the necessity of residence; but whether it entitled them to vote in the assembly is a point upon which authors are divided. The admission of aliens as members of a deme, which was the ordinary or general mode of naturalization, was very limited at first, as the Athenians, in common with the other Grecian states, placed a high value upon citizenship, and were suspicious of and prejudiced against foreigners. When Clisthenes made a new division of the tribes, in 509 B. C, and of their subdivision into demes or local parishes, townships, or cantons, he, with a view of strengthening these separate political communities, added new citizens, among whom were included not only resident foreigners and strangers, but even slaves.
It was not intended as a precedent, but was a temporary expedient to enable him to carry out more effectually his plan for the division of the people into local communities. The innovation, however, was followed by the gradual extension of a more liberal feeling in regard to aliens. There was constantly at Athens a large body of resident foreigners, attracted there cither by commercial pursuits, or a wish to profit by the instruction of its schools, or the love of amusement. This class, embracing persons from all parts of Greece and from other countries, were known, in contradistinction to transitory strangers or mere sojourners, by the appellation of metci, and were under many disabilities. They could not acquire landed property, and if engaged in industrial pursuits, they were subject to a heavier tax than the citizens. They were compelled to select a patron as the mediator between themselves and the state in the transaction of all legal business, who was answerable for their good conduct. They were obliged, like the citizens, to serve in the army or navy when the exigencies of the state demanded it, and occasionally compelled to perform degrading services, which were rather symbolical acts, designed to remind them of the inferiority of their relation to the citizen.
Upon the payment of the tax imposed, they were allowed to engage in trade and commerce; and nearly all commercial business was in their hands. To this class, who had made Athens their permanent abode, it was of the greatest importance to be admitted members of a deme, as it released them from a burdensome tax, enabled them to acquire land, to inherit, and generally to enjoy the privileges of citizens, except that of holding the office of archon or priest. So strong was this desire, that they were occasionally induced to get their name surreptitiously entered upon the register of a distant deme; for a citizen was not obliged to reside in the one in which he was enrolled, and there were at least one hundred of these distinct commonalties distributed over Attica; but if the fraud was discovered, the alien was liable upon conviction to be sold as a slave. Themistocles exerted himself strongly in favor of this class, and chiefly through his influence their admission into the denies was greatly facilitated, and it afterward became more general. When the number of the citizens was greatly diminished by war, the loss was supplied by the admission of the resident aliens or metoeci.
After the disastrous defeat at Syracuse, which nearly depopulated the state, the ranks of the citizens were recruited by naturalizing the metceci. The lexiarchic registers were filled with these names, and the naturalization was so extensive as nearly to abolish all distinction. The loss of citizens was again supplied in this way after the battle of Chasromea; and perhaps no state, in proportion to its population, ever naturalized so many aliens. It was the fixed policy of the Spartans, and the peculiar aim of their institutions, to retain to themselves and to their descendants the exclusive exercise of political power; and so rigidly was this policy pursued, that Herodotus declares that but two instances had occurred in which they had admitted foreigners to the full franchise. After the time of Herodotus, foreigners were occasionally admitted, and it is after this period that helots are supposed to have been raised to this dignity. Upon the revolution effected by Cleomenes, and the reconstruction by him of the constitution of the state, he admitted a considerable number of new citizens.
They were selected from among the most worthy and deserving of the population, and embraced natives of Lacedamion, Periceci, and strangers, all of whom were admitted to the full franchise. (See Sparta.) - In Rome citizenship, or the Roman burgess right, was originally limited to the patricians. It was at first sparingly bestowed on distinguished foreign clans, after their emigration from their homes or after the conquest of their cities; but such grants became more rare as the privilege increased in value. During the republic citizenship was conferred by a vote of the senate upon aliens who had rendered eminent services to the state, of which several striking examples are mentioned by the Roman historians. After the social or Marsic war, 90 B. C, the right was extended to all the people of Italy. Under the emperors, down to the reign of Caracalla, foreigners petitioning for citizenship were naturalized by an imperial decree; but under a constitution promulgated by Caracalla, all the free inhabitants of the various provinces comprising the empire became thereafter Roman citizens; and as that empire embraced the civilized world, there could be few or no instances thereafter of personal naturalization. - The mode of obtaining naturalization in modern times, and the conditions upon which it will be granted, differ in different countries.
In the United States the power of conferring it is exclusively vested in the national government. This power has been sometimes exercised by a collective naturalization, in cases where foreign territory has been acquired, and in respect to certain Indian tribes, as well as by the fourteenth amendment of the constitution, which made citizens of the freedmen and other colored persons; but the mode in which individuals obtain it on their own application is regulated by acts of congress. The policy of this country on the subject, which is characterized by a desire to admit all foreigners of good character to a full participation in all the rights enjoyed by our own citizens, after a period of probation sufficiently long to enable them to become acquainted with the nature of our institutions, is to be traced back to an early period of our colonial history. It was not derived, like many of our laws, from the enactments or the example of Great Britain, but grew out of the necessities attendant upon the settlement of a new country.
At the period, when the colonies were founded, the policy of England for more than a century had been hostile to conferring political privileges upon foreigners; and so illiberal was its course in this respect through the whole period of our colonial history, that one of the acts of tyranny charged upon George III. in the Declaration of Independence was, that he had endeavored to prevent the population of the states by obstructing the laws for the naturalization of foreigners, and by refusing to pass others to encourage their migration hither. The only mode by which a foreigner in England could obtain naturalization, investing him with all the rights of a subject, was by act of parliament. He could obtain letters of denization by the king's special license, which was granted with certain restrictions. In the seventh year of the reign of Queen Anne an act was passed naturalizing foreign Protestants, by which persons of this class could be admitted to all the rights of subjects upon receiving the sacrament and taking the oaths of abjuration and allegiance; but it was repealed in the short space of three years. The rights of foreigners settled in the colonies were in a very precarious state.
By the law of England they could neither hold nor transmit real property, nor exercise any political rights; and by the navigation act, unless they were naturalized or made free denizens by the king's letters patent, they were forbidden to exercise in any of the colonies the occupation of a merchant or a lac-tor. To reniedv this state of things and to encourage immigration, the colonial legislatures exercised the right of passing naturalization laws. Maryland was the first colony that took this course. In 1666 she enacted a law for the naturalization of the Dutch from Cape Henlopen and the French Protestant refugees who had settled in the colony, and continned to pass laws for the naturalization of aliens to the time of the revolution. In 16571, in the reign of Charles II., the colony of Virginia passed an act for the naturalization of any one desiring to make that commonwealth his constant residence, who might apply by petition to the general assembly. Five act were afterward passed, naturalizing a number of aliens who had petitioned for the privilege; and in 1680 the governor was authorized to grant letters of naturalization to any foreigner settled in the colony upon his taking the oath of allegiance.
In 1705 a law was passed adding the test oath to the oath of allegiance to secure the Protestant succession, and in 1738 another act naturalizing any alien who might settle upon the Roanoke. In South Carolina, in 1693, the French Protestants who had settled in the province were made citizens by the colonial legislature; and in 1731 Massachusetts passed an act for the admission of foreign Protestants after a residence of one year. The colony of New York passed an act in 16S3, declaring that all actual inhabitants of the province professing Christianity, of whatever foreign nation, should be entitled to all the privileges of natural-horn subjects upon taking the oath of allegiance. Delaware in 1700 passed an act empowering the governor to declare any alien, previously settled, or thereafter coming to settle in the province, naturalized, upon taking an oath to be true and faithful to the king and to the government of the province, and declaring that all Swedes, Dutch, and other foreigners settled in the colony before its acquisition by the English were to be deemed fully and completely naturalized.
Pennsylvania also passed a naturalization law in the same year, and South Carolina a general act in 169G. These laws were not favorably regarded in England. They were looked upon as encroachments upon the royal prerogative or the rights of parliament; and even in the colonies, the more strenuous loyalists denounced them as disregarding the navigation acts, and tending to an undue increase of the inhabitants, thereby creating formidable antagonists to English industry, and nursing a disposition to rebellion. In 1715 the colony of New York passed an act for the naturalization of all foreign Protestants then inhabiting the province. The act was referred by the board of trade to Nortney, the English attorney general, who condemned this mode of naturalizing "in the lump, but recognized the right of the colonial legislature to naturalize particular aliens by name, after inquiring into each case specially; and thereafter down to 1773 some 14 acts were passed, by which an immense number of aliens were naturalized by name.
In 1740 an act was passed by the British parliament for the naturalization of foreign Protestants settled in the colonies of America. It required a residence there of seven years, without having been absent at any time for more than two months; all naturalized under it, except Quakers or Jews, had first to receive the sacrament of the Lord's supper in some Protestant communion; and by an act passed in 1747, the benefit of the previous act was extended to the Moravian Brethren, and other foreign Protestants settled in America, who had conscientious scruples against taking an oath. This was undoubtedly designed to supersede colonial legislation, but it did not have that effect. The long period of residence required was very objectionable in a new country, and the Catholics, who had settled extensively in Maryland, were excluded from its provisions. The colonial legislatures still continued to pass naturalization laws, and the difficulties growing out of the subject continued to increase until the separation of the two countries. - During the revolution, and until the adoption of the federal constitution, the power of naturalizing aliens was exercised by the states.
The constitution of the state of New York, adopted in 1777, declared that it should be in the discretion of the legislature to naturalize all such persons, and in such manner, as they should think proper. The legislature enacted no general law, but continued to pass acts for the naturalization of persons by name down to the year 1790. After the breaking out of the revolution, and especially after the independence of the United States was recognized by Great Britain, it became necessary both here and in England to determine who of those born in the colonies were to be deemed aliens. It was decided in the English courts that all persons of this class, adhering to the American government during the war and until after the treaty of 1783, ceased thereafter to be subjects of Great Britain, and were aliens; but in the American tribunals it was held that the colonies acquired all the rights and powers of sovereign states when they declared their independence on July 4, 1776, and that the people of the respective states ceased upon that day to be subjects of Great Britain, and became members of the new nation then formed; that none were excepted unless, within a reasonable time after that event, they had placed themselves under the protection and power of the government of Great Britain in such a way as to indicate an election on their part to remain in allegiance to that country.
It was conceded by the tribunals of both countries that all persons born in the colonies had a right, upon the happening of such an event as the revolution, to elect to which government they would adhere; the point upon which they differed being that the English courts considered the date of the treaty of 1783 as the period when we ceased to be subjects, while our courts adopted as the era the day of the declaration of independence. In some of the states laws were passed soon after the declaration of independence, setting forth that all abiding in the state after that event, or after a certain specified period, and deriving protection from the laws of the state, owed allegiance to it. This was the case in New York, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey. In other states no special laws were passed, but each case was left to be decided upon its own circumstances according to the voluntary acts and the conduct of the party. It was also held that persons born in Great Britain who adhered to the American cause until the close of the war, became thereby American citizens; and that the natives of the colonies absent and living under the protection of Great Britain at the declaration of independence, but who returned to the country before the treaty of 1783, and continued here afterward, were citizens.
This question of the alienage or citizenship of those born in the country before or during the war became a very important one, as it involved the right of succession to landed property, and was a fruitful source of litigation, until ultimately settled by the tribunals of both countries. In the articles of confederation there was a clause declaring that the free inhabitants of each state should be entitled to all the privileges and immunities of free citizens in the several states; and as each state had the power of determining for itself upon what condition aliens should be admitted, and as in some of the states higher qualifications were required by law than in others, it was felt that great inconveniences would arise in the practical operation of this provision. A single state had the power of forcing into another any alien upon whom it might confer the right of citizenship, though declared to be disqualified by the laws of that state. One state had but to naturalize him, and then, by the effect of the clause in the articles of confederation, he became a citizen in every other, thereby making the law of one state paramount to that of the rest. No actual difficulty occurred, but the most serious embarrassments were likely to arise at any moment.
Therefore, when the federal constitution was framed in 1787, a provision was inserted without debate conferring upon congress the power of establishing one uniform rule of naturalization throughout the United States; and at the second session of the first congress after the adoption of the constitution, on March 26, 1790, an act of the most liberal character was passed, authorizing the naturalization of any free white alien after a residence of two years under the jurisdiction of the United States, and of one year in the state where he applied for admission; and from that time to the year 1872 some 18 acts were passed upon the subject. In 1795 the period of residence was increased to five years, and a previous declaration upon oath by the alien of his intention to become a citizen was required to be made before a court of one of the states, at least three years before the applicant's admission. In 1798 the residence was increased to 14 years, with five years' previous declaration of intention. In 1802 the residence was reduced again to five years and the declaration of intention to three years; and in 1824 the declaration of intention was further reduced to two years.
It was supposed in some of the states that they still had concurrent jurisdiction, and Virginia adopted a conflicting statute in 1790; but it was held by the supreme court of the United States in 1817 that the power to naturalize was vested exclusively in congress. The soundness of this decision was much questioned at the time, but it is now universally acknowledged to have been correct. But though no state can confer upon any alien all the rights and privileges of a citizen of the United States, it may grant him any civil or political privileges within its own jurisdiction not inconsistent with the laws of the United States; and in many, especially in the western states, aliens are allowed to hold land, to exercise the elective franchise, and to enjoy many of the privileges of citizens; a liberal policy which has contributed greatly to the rapid settlement of these states, and to their increase in wealth and prosperity. - The existing laws of the United States on the subject of naturalization are to be gathered from many statutes, some of them relating to other subjects; and the want of one general act, in which the whole law should be embodied and clearly expressed, has been very much felt.
The qualifications requisite, and the mode of obtaining naturalization, are at present (1875) as follows. The applicant must be a free white person, and must have resided in the United States for the continued term of five years next preceding his admission, and one year at least within the state or territory where the court is held that admits him. Two years at least before his admission he must declare on oath or affirmation, before a court of record having common-law jurisdiction and a seal and clerk, or before a circuit or district, court of the United States, or before a clerk of either of the said courts, that it is bona fide his intention to become a citizen, and to renounce for ever all allegiance and fidelity to any foreign prince, potentate, state, or sovereignty, and particularly by name the prince, potentate, state, or sovereignty of which he is at the time a citizen or subject. This declaration is recorded by the clerk, and a certificate under the seal of the court and signed by the clerk that he has made such a declaration is given him; which is received thereafter as evidence of the fact.
If the applicant was a minor under the age of 18 years when he came to the country, this previous declaration of intention is dispensed with, and he is entitled to be admitted after he has arrived at the age of 21 years, if be has resided five years in the United States, including the three years of his minority, and has so continued to reside up to the time when he makes his application, upon complying with the law in other respects. There is some obscurity in i latter provision. Some have thought that the three years of minority, from 18 to 21, is all that can he allowed as a part of the five year-' residence demanded by the act, and that one naturalized as a minor was not entitled to he admitted until he had arrived at the age of hut it has been decided in the New York common pleas (all the judges concurring) that He is entitled to he admitted at 21, if he had resided here since he was 15; that all that the statute requires is, that he must in every case have resided here between the ages of 18 and 21, and if he has done that, and also resided here two years before that period began, it is a residence of five years within the meaning of the act, By an act passed in 18G2 an alien who has enlisted in the armies of the United States, either in the regular or volunteer service, and who has been honorably discharged, may, upon proof of one year's residence in the United States and of good character, be naturalized without any previous declaration of intention.
By the act of June 7, 1872, any seaman who declares his intention in a competent court to become a citizen, and who thereafter serves for three years on board of a merchant ship or ships of the United States, can, upon the production of a certificate of his discharge and i conduct during that time and of his previous declaration, be naturalized; and for the purpose of protection he is deemed a citizen after the tiling of his declaration of intention to become one. When the applicant has completed the necessary residence, he must prove the fact before one of the courts previously named by other testimony than his own oath witness, if he knows the fact, is sufficient. If entitled to admission without a previous declaration of intention, the alien must declare upon oath, and prove to the satisfaction of the court, that for the three years next preceding his application it was bono fide his intention to become a citizen; and every applicant must prove (which may be done by his own oath, unless the court should require other testimony) that he has behaved during the period of his residence as a man of good moral character, attached to the principles of the constitution of the United States, and well disposed to the good order and happiness of the same. The mode of admission is as follows.
The applicant goes to the clerk of the court, and exhibits the certificate of his having declared his "itention. '1 he clerk then prepares a written deposition for the witness, setting forth his knowledge of the applicant's residence and of his good character, and another for the applicant, declaring that he renounces all allegiance to every foreign power, and particularly that of which he is a citizen or subject, and' if he has borne any title of nobility, that he renounces it, and that he will support the constitution of the United States. The parties are then taken before the judge, who examines each of them under oath; and if he is satisfied that the applicant has resided in the country for the requisite period, and is a man of good character, he makes an order in writing for his admission. The deposition's are then subscribed by the parties and publicly sworn to in court in the presence of the judge; and the certificate of the declaration of intention, the depositions, and the order of the judge are filed, and constitute the record of the proceeding.
A final certificate under the seal of the court, signed by the clerk, is then given the alien, declaring that he has complied with all the requisites of the law, and has been duly admitted a citizen; which certificate is conclusive evidence thereafter of the fact. In the case of a minor the previous declaration of intention is dispensed with, but in all other respects the course of procedure is the same. The record of naturalization, if regular upon its face, is conclusive as to the naturalization of the alien, and cannot be contradicted by extrinsic evidence. It may be set aside, however, if fraudulently obtained, by the court in which the alien was naturalized; and a very elaborate and effective act was passed July 14,1872, making it a felony to obtain or knowingly to assist in obtaining a fraudulent naturalization. Acts have been passed for the admission of persons residing in the United States before certain dates without previous declaration of intention; but they have all become obsolete by lapse of time, except possibly the last, relating to those so residing prior to June 18, 1812. A child born out of the United States is a citizen if the father was one at the time of the birth of the child, but the right will not descend to one whose father has never resided in the United States; and the minor children of persons naturalized, if the children are then dwelling in the United States, become citizens by the naturalization of the parent.
It was formerly questioned whether this latter provision applied to any but the children of parents naturalized before the passage of the act in 1802. Chancellor Kent, in his " Commentaries," inclined to the opinion that the act was prospective, and was designed to embrace the children of persons who should thereafter be naturalized; and opinions to the same effect were expressed by many eminent jurists. But the point came up for decision in the court of chancery of the state of New York in 1840, in the case of children who were minors, living with their father in this country, when the father was naturalized in 1830, and whose right to succeed to his estate was denied upon the assumption that they were aliens. Chancellor Walworth decided that they were not aliens, but became citizens in 1830 by the naturalization of their father. After an elaborate examination of the legislation of congress, he held that the provision in the act of 1802 was prospective, so as to embrace the children of aliens naturalized after the passage of the act, as well as the children of those who were naturalized before.
Decisions to the same effect were rendered by Chief Justice Daly in the New York court of common pleas in 1847; by the supreme court of Arkansas in a case of great public interest in which the question was elaborately examined, in 1850; and by the supreme court of Florida in 1865. Another important question under this provision is whether both parents should be naturalized to confer the right upon children. The importance of this question is greatly lessened in cases of naturalization after Feb. 10, 1855, as congress on that day passed an act declaring "that any woman who might be lawfully naturalized under the existing laws, married or who shall be married to a citizen of the United States, shall be deemed and taken to be a citizen;" but before that time the American courts had repeatedly held that a wife who was an alien did not become a citizen by the naturalization of her husband. These two questions are of great practical importance, as vast numbers of persons since the enactment of this provision have inherited, purchased, and transmitted real property upon the assumption that they were citizens by the naturalization of their fathers, whose rights, and the rights which others have derived from them, would be disturbed if a different construction were now given to this provision; and although these two questions have not been decided by the highest authority in this country, the su-preme court of the United States, it may nevertheless be assumed that they are now settled, and the construction above stated universally acquiesced in.
A doubt arose whether the act of 1855 applied to a woman who was married to her husband before he was naturalized, the language of the act being, " married or who shall be married to a citizen." The supreme court of the United States decided that these words refer to a state of marriage, and not to the time when the ceremony was performed; that whether married before or after the naturalization of her husband, the wife becomes by his naturalization also a citizen, it being the manifest intent of the act that the citizenship of the wife should follow as a consequence of the naturalization of the husband; and it was decided in North Carolina in 1869 that a white woman, a native of Ireland, who married an American citizen, was a citizen of the United States, although she had always resided in Ireland. If an alien who has declared his intention dies before he is naturalized, his widow and children may become citizens by simply taking the oath required of all naturalized citizens to support the constitution of the United States, and to renounce all previous allegiance. In this case the period of residence of the widow and children is immaterial, nor is any distinction made between minor children and adults. - In certain cases aliens are disqualified from becoming citizens.
No alien can be admitted while his country is at war with the United States, nor could one be admitted who was legally convicted of having joined the British army during the American revolution, or who was proscribed by any state before 1802, unless with the consent of the state. The statutes also provide only for the naturalization of "free white" persons, which is supposed to exclude all that can be denominated colored races - the copper-colored natives or Indians of America, the African races, and the yellow races of Asia. It has been held by the courts of California that a Chinese is not a white person within the meaning of the act, and cannot therefore be naturalized. In the celebrated Dred Scott case the supreme court of the United States in 1850 held that the Africans imported into the country and their descendants were a subjugated race, and not the people by whom the government was established; that they were not and never were intended to be embraced under the denomination of citizens; and that when the right to naturalize was surrendered by the states to the federal government, it was meant to be confined to persons of foreign birth, and not a power to raise inferior races here to the rank of citizens, such as Indians, negroes, and mulat-toes, though upon this latter point the judges differed.
Indians, and persons of mixed Indian and African blood, have however been admitted to the rights of citizenship by special treaties and acts of annexation. This was done by article 14 of the treaty with the Choctaws of Sept. 27, 1830; by article 12 of that with the Chero-kees of May 23, 1836; and in the treaties by which Louisiana, Florida, and California were acquired. A delicate question arose as to the degree of mixture or color which would preclude one from being denominated a white person. There was no agreement on the subject even in the slave states. In some the proportion was one eighth, in others one fourth; and in South Carolina any distinct and visible admixture of negro blood, to be determined by the evidence of features, complexion, and parentage, was sufficient. On the other hand, in the free state of Ohio any one being nearer white than black, that is, having more than one half white blood, was declared to be white. The question has ceased to be of its former importance since the adoption in 1868 of the fourteenth amendment of the constitution of the United States, which declares that all persons born or naturalized in the United States and subject to the jurisdiction thereof are citizens of the United States and of the state wherein they reside, and that no state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States. It was held by the supreme court of the United States in 1872, in the slaughter house cases, that this enactment was primarily intended to confer citizenship on the negro race; secondly, to give definitions of citizenship of the United States and of the states; and that it recognizes the distinction between the two.
The question however still remains, under the naturalization laws what admixture of color will preclude one from being denominated a white person, and may arise when mulattoes or others of mixed African or Indian blood born in the West Indies or in Central or South America, or elsewhere out of the United States, apply to be naturalized. - The residence required by the naturalization laws is a permanent abode in the country; and when that is established or begun, it will not be affected by a temporary absence upon business or pleasure, if the intention to keep up the residence here and return has always existed, and no residence has been established elsewhere. A man's residence may be defined to be the place where he abides, with his family if he has one, and makes the chief seat of his affairs and interests. In respect to seamen who have no fixed place of residence, they are provided for in the act of 1872 before referred to. - Many questions have been decided by the courts in respect to naturalization, which will be summarily stated. Foreigners by birth are prima facie aliens, and must show that they have been naturalized before they can inherit; and if not entitled to inherit, being aliens, they cannot become so by afterward getting, naturalized.
The marriage of an American woman with an alien does not make her an alien; but if she emigrates to a foreign country with her husband and takes up her abode with an intention to remain there permanently, she would probably be regarded as having lost the character of an American citizen, at least while such a of tilings existed, especially if in the country in which she dwells she is by its laws a citizen or subject there, by being married to a citizen or subject of that country. Emigration to another country, swearing allegiance to ;id entering and uniformly continuing in the service of its government, are sufficient to show expatriation, and that the person has lost the character of an American citizen. A child born in a foreign country, whose mother was a native of that country, and whose father was an American citizen who went there with the intention of remaining, but was never naturalized there, is an American citizen, and can in-berit property in the United States. A child born of non-resident parents, if bom in one of the United States, is prima facie a citizen, although hi mother was in the state merely for the purpose of being confined.
A child born abroad of an American citizen is subject to a double. allegiance; but upon arriving at ma-be may elect one and repudiate the other. and such election is conclusive upon him. Allegiance in the United States is twofold, to the Union and to the particular state; but that to the Union is paramount. Where a territory is conquered, it operates to change the allegiance of the people; but their relation and rights in respect to each other remain undisturbed. Citizens of Texas before the annexation became citizens of the United States by that act, which operated as an act of naturalization; and it was decided in Pennsylvania that a native of Saxony who went to Louisiana in 1801, and was residing there when the territory was ceded to the United States in 1803, and continued to reside there afterward, became by the act of cession a citizen of the United States. A court having neither clerk nor recording officer distinct from the judge is not a court entitled to naturalize. - As to the right of a citizen or subject to expatriate himself and renounce his allegiance to his native country, there was formerly even in the United States great difference of opinion.
The most authoritative writers upon the law of nations treated it as an inherent right, and it was so regarded in many of the European nations. In England, however, it was held by the courts that the allegiance of a native-born subject was intrinsic and perpetual, of which he could never divest himself by any act of his own, and that it was not in the power of any foreign prince or nation, by naturalization, to dissolve the bond between a British subject and the crown. In the supreme court of the United States the question was elaborately discussed in three cases, but was not passed upon, while in the state courts there were conflicting decisions. Chancellor Kent in his "Commentaries," after reviewing all the decisions, declared the better opinion to be that an American citizen could not renounce his allegiance without the consent of the government in a mode prescribed by law; and as congress had passed no law, that the rule of the English common law remained unaltered. On the other hand, the executive branch of the government recognized the right. Gen. Cass, the secretary of state, did so in 1859; and Attorney Generals dishing and Black both officially advised the government that an American citizen could renounce his allegiance.
Finally an act of congress was passed July 27, 1868, declaring expatriation to be an inherent right in all men, and that any act of any officer of the government which denied, restricted, impaired, or epiestioned it was inconsistent with the fundamental principles of the government. In the same year it was settled by treaty between the United States and the North German Union that if a citizen or subject was, after a residence of live years, naturalized in either country, he was to be deemed a citizen of that country; that if he returned to the land of his birth, he could not be prosecuted for any criminal offence unless it was committed before his expatriation; and that by a residence of two years in the country to which he originally belonged, with no intention of returning to the one of his adoption, he would be presumed to have renounced his naturalization. In 1870 Great Britain, by an act of parliament, which will be hereafter referred to, abandoned its former policy; and the right of expatriation and the renunciation of allegiance is now recognized in the United States, Great Britain, France, Russia, Germany, Austria, Italy, Spain, Belgium, Holland, Denmark, Sweden, and Norway; but in some of these countries it is subject to the condition that the native has fulfilled the obligations imposed by his former allegiance, such as military service. - In Great Britain, prior to 1844, naturalization could be effected only by act of parliament.
Originally it conferred all the rights of a natural-born subject, but by an act dictated by the jealous policy of the government upon the accession of the house of Orange, passed in 1701, it was declared that no one, though naturalized, should be of the privy council or a member of parliament, or hold any office civil or military, or be allowed to receive any grant of land from the crown. As before stated, the king might grant letters of denization conferring certain limited rights, in the exercise of his royal prerogative. In this state the law remained until the reign of Victoria. Great desire having been expressed for more liberal enactments, the subject was referred to a committee of parliament, who made an elaborate investigation, and a law was passed in 1844 defining the privileges of aliens upon some questionable points, and providing for the naturalization of all aliens residing in or coming to Great Britain with intent to settle. The provisions of this act need not be enumerated, as they were superseded by a more comprehensive act passed in 1870, which repealed a number of the preceding laws.
By the latter act any alien who has resided for five years in the United Kingdom, or has been for that period in the service of the crown, and intends after naturalization to continue in that service or to reside in the United Kingdom, may, upon producing such evidence of his residence, service, and intention as shall be satisfactory to one of her majesty's principal secretaries of state, receive from such secretary a certificate of naturalization, which shall take effect after the alien has taken the oath of allegiance; upon which he shall be entitled to all the rights and be subject to all the obligations of a natural-born subject, but shall not within the limits of the foreign state of which he was a subject be deemed a British subject, unless he has ceased to be a subject of that state by its laws or by treaty. The secretary of state may grant or refuse the certificate without giving any reasons, and from his decision there is no appeal; and he may grant a special certificate of naturalization to any person, in respect to whose nationality as a British subject there is any doubt, which is not to be an admission that he was not previously a British subject. This act contains many important provisions in respect to alienage and expatriation.
It provides that aliens may acquire, hold, and dispose of real and personal property in the same manner in all respects as naturalized British subjects, and that it may be derived from or through them in all respects as from or through natural-born subjects. This however does not extend to property out of the United Kingdom, nor confer upon them any municipal, parliamentary, or other franchises, or entitle them to hold office. It declares that any British subject in a foreign state, who was not under any disability, and who has voluntarily become naturalized in that state, shall cease to be a British subject; that any person who by his having been born in the dominion of the queen is a British subject, but who at the time of his birth was also by its laws, and is still, a subject of a foreign state, may cease to be a British subject by making a declaration of his alienage in the presence of any diplomatic or consular officer in the service of the queen, or if such person is in the United Kingdom before a justice of the peace, or if he is elsewhere in her majesty's dominions before any officer authorized to administer an oath; and that where a convention to that effect has been entered into by the queen with a foreign state, any subject or citizen of that state who has been naturalized as a British subject may in like manner make a declaration of alienage, upon which he shall cease to be a British subject, and shall be thereafter regarded as a citizen or subject of the country to which he originally belonged.
Under this act also a married woman is to be deemed a subject of the country of which her husband is a subject. If she is a widow and was born a British subject, she may obtain a certificate of admission to British nationality. The children of British subjects naturalized in a foreign country, who during infancy became resident of the country where their father or mother was naturalized, and who according to the laws of the country became naturalized therein, are to be deemed citizens or subjects of that country and not British subjects: and when the father, or the mother if a widow, has been readmitted to British nationality, the children, if they have become residents during infancy in the British dominion with the father or the mother, resume their position of British subjects; and if the father, or the mother if a widow, become naturalized, the children are deemed British subjects if they during infancy become residents with their father or their mother in any part of the United Kingdom. And finally all laws made in the British colonial possessions respecting naturalization are to have the authority of law, but are subject to be confirmed or disallowed by the queen like other colonial laws. - In the various British colonies naturalization is either granted by the governor, or by a special act or ordinance of the colonial legislature or council, in each instance, or it is regulated by a general local law.
It is granted by the governor in Jamaica, the Bahamas, Antigua, Turk's and Cai-cos islands, Newfoundland, Victoria, South Australia, Tasmania, and New Zealand; by a special act or ordinance in each case in Westem Australia, British Guiana, Barbadoes, St. Vincent, St. Lucia, Grenada, Trinidad, and generally in the miner West India islands. In Antigua! Grenada, and St. Vincent immigrants from the United States and British North America, of African descent, who have served under a contract for a year, can after three years' residence become naturalized by taking the oath of allegiance before the governor and secetary of the colony. In Sierra Leone it is regulated by an act of the imperial parliament.
In New South Wales, Bermuda, and Honduras, it is, making the necessary changes, the same as under the English act of 1844. In the following colonies it is regulated by a general local law: Canada. St. Christopher and Anguilla, Turk'- and Caicos islands, and Cape Colony. In Canada and Cape Colony a certain period of residence is required. In all the colonies an oath of allegiance is taken and a few other formalities are requisite. In Canada an oath by the applicant of three years' residence with intent to settle, and an oath of allegiance, are taken he-fore a justice of the peace. The justice transmits a certificate that the requisite oaths have been taken to the court of the city or place where the applicant resided on the first day of fitting; this is publicly read in court, and if no valid objection is made the certificate is filed and the act of naturalization is complete. The effect of naturalization by the local government of a colony or country forming part of the dominions of the crown of England, was considered in a case arising in the reign of Charles II., Craw against Ramsey, reported in Vaughan's Reports. It was declared in that case that a son naturalized by the parliament of Ireland, or naturalized in Scotland, which at that period was an independent kingdom, connected with England only by the circumstance that the crowns of both kingdoms centred in one person. did not thereby become a naturalized subject in England; that the effect of such a naturalization did not extend beyond the limits of the country where it was conferred, and that this applied to all the colonies or de-pendewies of the crown of England. It was also held in two cases before the privy council, in 1834 and 18:57, one of which arose in the island of Mauritius and the other in Canada, that the status or political condition of a person resident in one of the British dependencies was to be determined by the law of Great Britain, but that the rights or liabilities which attached to it, when ascertained, depended upon the law of the particular colony. - The policy of France upon this subject has been restricive, which may be traced in a great de-gree to the unfavorable influence exercised by forigners at various periods of her history.
Many Italian adventurers were naturalized in the reign of Charles VIII., but their characters were so worthless that their certificates of naturalization were annulled by his successor Louis XII. in 1499. At the time of the league great number, of naturalized Spaniards and Italians mingled in public affairs, and gave such offence, especially as a branch of the clergy, that a law was passed in 1579 prohibiting foreigners from holding ecclesiastical offices.. Their participation in the civil administration of the state reached its climax when the notorious Italian Concini, the protege of Maria de' Medici, became a marshal without ever having drawn a sword, and minister, ruling with capricious insolence a people of whose laws he was ignorant. After his tragical end in 1017, an act was passed debarring foreigners from holding a seat in the administration; and the mischief wrought by Mazarin and his foreign camarilla led to a still more stringent law in 1G51. No material change took place until the revolution, when in 1791 the legislative assembly was authorized to naturalize foreigners upon the condition that they fixed their residence in the country and took an oath of allegiance.
In 1793 a law was enacted admitting all to the rights of French citizens who had been domiciled in the country one year, over the age of 21, who supported themselves by their labor, or acquired property, or who should marry a native, or adopt a French infant, or support an aged person, and all others whom the convention regarded as meriting well of humanity. In 1798 a residence of seven consecutive years was made necessary; and as the country gravitated toward monarchy in 1800, the residence was extended to ten consecutive years. In 1803 the residence was reduced to one year, if the alien had rendered important service to the state by his talents, inventions, useful industry, or by forming large establishments therein. In 1808 it was provided that naturalization upon the ground of important services to the state, thereafter known as la grande naturalisation, should be conferred by a decree ratified by the council of state. In 1814 it was declared that no naturalized subject should be eligible to a seat in the legislative chambers, unless he had received the grand naturalization. After the revolution of 1848 the term of residence was reduced to five years, and in 1867 it was further reduced to three years.
As the law now stands, the grand naturalization after the residence of a year, in the cases already mentioned, is conferred by a decree of the executive, and ratified by the legislature. In other cases the alien must have attained the age of 21, must have resided in France for three consecutive years under the authorization of the government, and have declared his intention of fixing his residence there; and the application must be made in the manner provided for by the decree of 1809. A child born in France of foreign parents, or the child of French parents born abroad, may reclaim the rights of citizenship on attaining the age of 21, if he resides in France and declares his intention of there fixing his domicile, or if, residing abroad, he makes a similar declaration and establishes himself in France within the year that he makes his declaration. A foreign woman marrying a native becomes a Trench subject, and a French woman marrying a foreigner follows the condition of her husband; but becoming a widow, she recovers her nationality if living in France, or if she returns to it with the authority of the executive, and declares her intention of fixing there her residence.
A foreigner living in France enjoys the same civil rights that are accorded to Frenchmen in the country to which the foreigner belongs. Citizenship is lost by naturalization elsewhere, by accepting office or a pension under another government without the authority of the executive, or by so establishing one's self abroad as to indicate an intention not to return; but dwelling abroad for commercial purposes does not have that effect. Citizenship may be recovered by renouncing the foreign office and domicile, on due application to the state, upon declaring an intention to fix a residence in France and renouncing all distinctions contrary to its laws. A difference is recognized since 1823 between letters of naturalization and letters of nationality, the former conferring a new right, the latter merely restoring a right that was lost or in abeyance. All Frenchmen, whether naturalized or holding office abroad with the consent of the executive, who are taken bearing arms against France, suffer the penalty of death; it constitutes no exemption that they were serving in obedience to the laws of their adopted country. Not only in this provision, but upon naturalization of foreigners generally, the policy of the government is in practice very illiberal.
In 1852 a difficulty arose between the governments of the United States and France, upon the claim of the latter to compel a Frenchman naturalized in the United States to serve in the French army. At the earnest remonstrances of the American minister, the case was investigated by the French minister of war, and he was of opinion that the claim of the government of France could not be supported, but he left the matter to be determined by the judicial tribunals. The question afterward came before the French courts in the case of two natives of France naturalized in the United States, who upon their return to their native country had been compelled to enter the French army; and after a full examination of the whole subject, it was decided that as France recognized the right of expatriation, it followed as a consequence that it could have no claim upon a native of France who by naturalization became the citizen of another country; that by being naturalized a Frenchman changed his allegiance and lost his native character, and could not on returning to France be compelled to serve in the army, or perform the obligations required of a French subject or citizen.
The decision was approved by the imperial government, and the men were discharged. - In Belgium naturalization is granted by a legislative act. It is of two kinds, grand and ordinary. The first is conferred only where eminent services have been rendered to the state, and the person to whom it is granted is placed in every respect upon an equality with a native. The second naturalization, ordinaire or petite, admits to every privilege except the exercise of those political rights which are reserved for the grand naturalization. In contradistinction to France, the policy of the Belgian government on this subject is distinguished by great liberality. In the Netherlands, by the fundamental law of 181-8, a foreigner can be naturalized only by an act of the states general, approved by the king; but he acquires substantially the privileges of a subject if he has permission from the king to establish a domicile, and gives notice to the administration of a commune that he has established his domicile in that commune, with a declaration of his intention to settle in the kingdom, and retains his domicile in the same commune for six years.
In neither country is any stated period of residence demanded, or any other special condition required; and citizenship in both may be lost for the same causes as in France, and restored in the same way. - In Sweden, by a law passed in 1858, an application must be made by petition to the king, accompanied by proof of the age of the petitioner, his religion, his native country, the time of his immigration, the places where he has resided in Sweden, and his general good conduct. He must be 21 years of age, of good character, a resident of Sweden for three years, must have the means of supporting himself, and must not be of the Roman Catholic religion. If he has been previously admitted into the service of the state, or is known as a man of more than ordinary ability in the arts or sciences, or in the industrial pursuits of agriculture or mining, or if for other reasons it is considered that his adoption as a Swedish subject would prove useful to the state, the three years' previous residence may be dispensed with.
In Norway naturalization is granted by the storthing, the national legislative assembly, in which this power is exclusively vested, the assent of the king in this case not being necessary; but any one who has definitively fixed his domicile in Norway, and resided there for ten years, has all the civil and political rights of a Norwegian subject. In Denmark a petition must be addressed to the president of the rigsraad, with a certificate of two citizens that the petitioner has resided one year in the country. An act is then passed by the rigsraad, declaring that the petitioner may reside and trade in the kingdom, with all the rights and subject to all the duties of a native-born subject. It must be approved by one of the ministers and receive the sanction of the king, and the privilege is almost invariably granted as a matter of course whenever applied for. - In Russia, by the law of 1864, a domicile of five years is requisite, which may be shortened in special cases. To acquire a domicile the foreigner must declare his wish to the governor of the province where he intends to reside, and explain the nature of his occupation in his own country and the pursuit he purposes to follow in Russia; upon the receipt of which declaration he becomes domiciled.
When the requisite time has elapsed application for naturalization must be made to the minister of the interior, with whom it is optional to refuse or grant the petition. If granted, the alien becomes naturalized by taking an oath of fidelity to the emperor, and is then in respect to his rights and obligations upon a perfect equality with native-horn Russians. He may if be wishes afterward renounce his naturalization on payment of all claims against him, governmental or private, and return to his native country or remain in Russia as a foreigner. Foreigners in the military or civil service of Russia, and ecclesiastics of foreign persuasions, are naturalized by taking the oath of allegiance without any fixed period of domicile. The oath of allegiance is merely personal, and does not affect children previously born, who however may be admitted upon the same terms as their parents. Children who are born afterward are Russians. Children of foreigners born and educated in Russia, or born abroad and educated in a Russian upper or middle school, may be naturalized a year after they have attained their majority. - As most of the German states are now incorporated in the German empire, their previous regulations respecting naturalization and citizenship have been modified by a comprehensive provision preserved from the constitution of the North German confederation adopted in 1867, which declared that citizenship should thereafter be subject to the regulations of the confederation and of its legislature; that a common right of citizenship prevailed in the confederation, and that the citizens of each constituent member of it should be treated as natives in all the others.
A bureau has recently established by the national government to which, it is said, this whole subject has been committed. As a general rule, under the regulations formerly in force, naturalization was granted if the applicant had been released from his former allegiance, or had been allowed by his government to emigrate; if he were of good character, and had discharged all his obligations in the particular state to which he belonged, such as paying his debts and fulfilling his military duty, which latter condition was required only of those from other German state.. Application was made in writing to the council of the city or village where the applicant resided, showing that he came within the above requirements. The petition was closely scrutinized, and if favorably regarded was sent with a report to the highest authority in the state, and a diploma signed by the proper minister was transmitted and given to the petitioner upon the payment of a small fee If the petition was refused by the local authorities, it was simply sent back, but the reasons were given if applied for. An appeal might be taken, but Was of little value, as the decision of the local authorities was almost invariably affirmed.
In Prussia, by a law of 1842, the superior administrative authorities are empowered to naturalize any stranger who satisfies them of his good conduct, certain exceptions being made. Citizenship is acquired by nomination to a public office, or by the marriage of a foreign woman with a Prussian. The quality of a Prussian subject is lost by his being discharged upon his request, which is not granted to males between the ages of 17 and 25 years without a military certificate that the application is not made to avoid the performance of their military duty. It is also lost by the sentence of a court, by living ten years in a foreign country, by entering a foreign service without the permission of Prussia, or by the marriage of a female subject with a foreigner. If there is no special exemption, the certificate of discharge comprehends the wife and the minor children that are still under their father's authority. - In Austria, a foreigner acquires the rights of citizenship if employed as a public functionary, but not by mere admission into the military service, nor by receiving a title of distinction or honor, but is treated as a citizen if maintained by the government on account of military services.
The right may be conferred by the superior authorities upon an individual after ten years' residence without interruption, upon proof of the fact and upon taking the oath of allegiance. The authorities, however, may grant it before the expiration of that period upon proof of good moral character and of the applicant's ability to support himself; and foreigners acquire the rights of citizens by entering into business requiring a permanent residence. The temporary possession of a farm, however, of a house or other real estate, or the mere establishment of a manufactory, or a commercial business, or a partnership, does not confer the right. An emigrant who has left the empire by permission of the authorities, with the intention not to return, forfeits his privileges as a subject. Marriage with an Austrian confers citizenship upon the wife. - In Switzerland, under the constitution of May 29, 1874, a foreigner obtains citizenship, and thereby equal rights with the citizens in all cantons, by paying a fee in any commune, varying from about $4 to $300, according to the amount of communal property. - In Portugal, an application must be made to the king through the secretary of foreign affairs, which is referred to the council of state.
The applicant must be over 25 years of age, have resided in the country one year, and have the means of subsistence. The year's residence may be dispensed with if he is of Portuguese blood, or upon proof that he has married a Portuguese, or been useful to the state by embarking in commerce, improving any branch of the arts, or introducing any new trade, manufacture, or invention, or by opening or improving a public road; and they are generally dispensed with in the case of mariners, as it has been the constant policy of Portugal to encourage foreigners to enter and augment its marine. - In Spain, by the ancient law of the realm, no foreigner could be naturalized. The constitutions of 1837 and 1845, however, included in their classification of Spanish subjects those who should receive letters of naturalization, and provided for the enactment of a law declaratory of the conditions upon which such letters would be granted. The present state of the law appears to be unsettled or difficult to ascertain. - Before the various Italian states were formed into the kingdom of Italy, each state had its own regulations in respect to naturalization.
In the Two Sicilies ten years' consecutive residence was required, but special naturalization might be granted after one year's residence to any one who had rendered important service to the state. In Sardinia it was granted after five years' residence if the applicant had purchased real estate or was engaged in some useful commercial business. The pope in the Papal States and the king in the Neapolitan dominions might naturalize whom they thought proper; but the exercise of the power was rare, and when it took place was usually upon the same conditions as in Sardinia, except that none could be admitted but Roman Catholics, while in Sardinia no distinction was made on the ground of religion. According to the revised code of the kingdom of Italy of 1866, aliens may become naturalized citizens either by a special act of parliament or by a royal decree. The decree to be effectual must within six months after its date be registered with the proper civil authority of the state in the place where the alien has established or intends to establish his domicile, and the alien must also within that period take an oath before the same authorities that he will be faithful to the king and observe the statutes and laws of the realm.
The code does not contain any further regulations on the subject, but the government has discretionary power for taking such informations as each application may seem to require. Hence the necessity of a special act of parliament or a royal decree for each individual naturalization. There is in Italy, besides the national citizenship, a local one, as every Italian citizen must be enrolled in the lists of the district in which he is subject to taxation and conscription; citizenship in fact being of the same general nature as the German burgher right. By the national code above referred to of 1866, if the father is unknown, the child of a citizen mother is a citizen; and if the mother is unknown and the child was born in the kingdom, it is a citizen. A child of an alien who has had an uninterrupted domicile in the kingdom for ten years is a citizen; also the child of a citizen who has lost his citizenship before the birth of the child, if the child was born and resides in the kingdom. In such cases, however, the child may elect to be considered an alien, upon making a declaration to that effect in a mode prescribed.
A child born abroad before his father lost his citizenship is an alien; but he may elect to take the quality of a citizen by making a declaration in a form prescribed and establishing a domicile in Italy for a year; or he is regarded as a citizen if he has served in the Italian army or navy, or accepted public employment in the kingdom, or satisfied the requirements of the conscription without seeking exemption as an alien. If an alien has not established his domicile for ten years, his child is an alien, but by making the prescribed declaration may become a citizen. Citizenship is lost: 1, by making a formal renunciation of it before the civil authority of the province where the person resides and emigrating; 2, by accepting employment from a foreign state or entering its army, without permission of the Italian government; 3, by naturalization in a foreign country. The wife and minor children of one who has lost his citizenship are aliens, unless they have continued to reside in the realm. Citizenship may be restored: 1, by returning to the realm with the permission of the government; 2, by renouncing foreign citizenship, or the employment or military service of a foreign power; 3, by declaring an intention before the proper authority to establish a domicile in the realm, and establishing it within a year. - In Greece, by a law passed May 15, 1835, any foreigner may become a Greek citizen by making a declaration of his intention before the authorities of the deme in which he resides, and after a continued residence in the country for three years from the day when he declared his intention.
Upon the expiration of the three years he is naturalized by taking an oath before the prefect of obedience to the laws and of fidelity to the king. From the period of declaring his intention he enjoys all civil rights, and Grecian citizenship may be conferred without expense upon any foreigner who has rendered distinguished service to the state. Any person born in Greece of foreign parents may, when arriving of age, become a Greek citizen by declaring his intention to make Greece his permanent home, and registering his name in a deme, or, if residing abroad, by making a similar declaration, and returning within one year thereafter to Greece and registering his name as above. Every one born abroad of a Greek father is a citizen of Greece; or if the father has lost his nationality, the son may become a citizen by making the declaration and registering his name as above stated. This law declares Greek citizens to be those born in the kingdom and of parents having the Greek nationality, and those who have acquired it by declaring their intention to become citizens; and that the nationality is lost by becoming a citizen of a foreign country, by bearing arms against Greece, or by entering the civil or military service of another nation without obtaining special permission from the king, or by a citizen establishing himself abroad in a manner which indicates an intent not to return, but no such intent is to be inferred simply from the fact that a citizen has established himself in another country for commercial purposes. - In Turkey the population is divided into two great classes, the Turks or Mohammedans, the rulinn race, and the Rayas (the flock), who with the exception of some few tribes are Christians or Jews. The Rayas are organized in distinct communities, having their own municipal regulations, as Armenians, Bulgarians, Bosnians. Serbs, Latin Christians, or Jews, under a recognized head, as a bishop, patriarch, or other ruler, who is responsible to the sultan for the good conduct of his community.
Resident foreigners might become members of one of these communities with the consent of the body, upon giving due noto the Porte, and when admitted were entitled to the privileges and bound to the obligations of Turkish subjects. This however has probably been modified by a decree of the Ottoman empire of jan. 19, 18G9, which provides that the character of a Turkish subject may be obtained on application to the minister for foreign affairs, if the applicant is of age and has resided five years consecutively within the Ottoman empire, and that this condition may be dispensed with by the government in exceptional cases. By this decree also the nationality of the parents, or of the father, alone determines that of the child, irrespective of the [dace of birth; and it further provides that a person born of an alien on Turkish territory may within three years after arriving at age claim to become a Turkish subject. Foreigners, not members of one of the Raya communities, are aliens and under the protection of their, respective consuls. The Mohammedans enjoy greater privileges than the Rayas, and foreigners of whatever creed or nation may He received into this class upon embracing Mohammedanism. Their naturalization was formerly both a civil ceremony and a religious rite.
It consisted in going first to the Porte or the executive authority representing it, in putting on the fez cap, and making a public declaration of faith in the words: "There is no God but God, and Mohammed is his prophet;" and then repeating the same ceremony in the mosque. Circumcision was also required; and when these conditions had been fulfilled, the proselyte was invested with all the rights of a native-born Mohammedan subject. Whether this continues, or has been superseded by the decree of 1869. is not known. In Egypt,Persia and throughout all the Mohammedan countries, naturalization is effected in the same way, either by embracing Mohammedanism or by being formally admitted a member of one of the other organized communities. - In the European sates, with but a few exceptions which have been mentioned, a naturalized foreigner enjoys every civil and political right and may hold the highest office. In all of them naturalization is a thing of rather unusual occurrence, the number of foreigners who become permanent residents in any one of them being very limited.
Those who do are chiefly devoted to commercial pursuits; and as naturalization, as a general rule, is not essential to enable them to carry on trade or commerce, it is not generally applied for. - In the different West India islands belonging to European powers, the authority to naturalize is generally either vested in the sovereign or his representative, or regulated by a local law. In the island of Cuba, by the Spanish ordinance of Oct. 21, 1817, the captain general may grant letters of license for domiciliation to all resident foreigners, upon their taking an oath of fidelity and submission to the law. These letters entitle them to hold real and personal property, and to the same protection in their persons and property as Spanish subjects; but for the first five years of domiciliation they cannot engage in trade, open a shop, or become owners of ships or vessels, unless in partnership with Spanish subjects. After that time they can become naturalized. They must present their original letter of license to the captain general, and avow their intention to make the island their perpetual residence; and if it appear after due inquiry by the government that they have resided constantly on the island for five years, and are of good moral character, letters of naturalization are granted to them after they have sworn fidelity to the Roman Catholic religion, to the crown, and to the laws, and renounced all foreign allegiance to and every privilege received from any other government.
When thus naturalized, they and their legitimate heirs and descendants acquire all the rights and privileges, and are placed upon the same footing as natural-born subjects. But the provision in respect to naturalization, though still in full force, has become practically a dead letter, as natives enjoy but few privileges which resident or domiciled foreigners do not possess. - In Havti, by a modification of the civil code adopted in 1860, any person who in virtue of the constitution wishes to become a citizen, must within a year after his arrival make an oath before a justice of the peace renouncing allegiance to every other government, upon presenting an official attestation of which at the office of the president of Hayti, he receives from that officer an act recognizing him as a citizen of the republic. - In Mexico two years' residence is required, and one year's previous declaration of intention. This declaration is in the form of a petition to the aijuntamiento of the place where the applicant resides. Before he can be naturalized, the applicant must prove before the nearest circuit judge that he is of the Roman Catholic religion, and has a trade, profession, or income sufficient to support him.
The documents containing this proof must then be laid before the governor or political chief of the district or territory, and, if satisfactory, letters of naturalization are granted by that officer to the applicant upon renouncing his former allegiance and swearing to support the constitution; but naturalization cannot be obtained while the country to which the applicant owes allegiance is at war with Mexico. Colonists who settle new lands can be naturalized a year after they have settled, and aliens in the naval service become citizens by taking the oath of allegiance. Citizenship in Mexico is lost by residing abroad for ten years without obtaining a prolongation of the permit to be absent; by accepting honors or offices from a foreign sovereign; by becoming naturalized in another country; by a citizen so establishing himself abroad as to indicate a manifest intention not to return; by a Mexican woman upon her marriage with a foreigner, and by the children of Mexicans born out of the country who do not claim the right before they arrive at the age of 26 years (but this is supposed to be unconstitutional since 1857). The adult children of Mexican parents who have lost their citizenship also lose the right, unless they claim it and reside one year in the country after their right to citizenship is recognized.
Finally, any Mexican who in time of war hoists a foreign flag over his house, loses his citizenship, and is punished by banishment. The children of aliens born in Mexico follow the condition of their parents, and are not deemed citizens. - In Brazil three years' previous residence is requisite, after which naturalization is obtained by a joint resolution, which must pass both chambers of the general assembly and be affirmed by the emperor. By a law passed in 1860 children of foreigners born in Brazil have during their minority the political condition of their parents; but on reaching their majority they acquire the rights and become subject to the duties of Brazilian citizens. A Brazilian woman marrying an alien follows his condition, but upon becoming a widow is considered a Brazilian subject if residing in Brazil, or if, returning there, she declares her intention to fix her residence in the country; and a foreign woman marrying a Brazilian has the political condition of her husband. In the Argentine Republic two years' residence in the country is required, or the period may be lessened where services have been rendered to the state.
In Peru the governor of a department may grant naturalization upon proof of good conduct, that the applicant has resided in Peru for one year, and that he comes within the requirements of the constitution, and upon his taking the oath of allegiance. In Chili five years' previous residence is necessary; but where an alien has married a native, this period is reduced to four years. In Paraguay foreigners who establish a character for prudence and discretion, and who are not political propagandists, may be naturalized with the consent of the president. In Bolivia citizenship is granted to those who renounce their former allegiance and inscribe their names upon the civil register. In Venezuela it may be obtained by transmitting a memorial through the governor of a province to the executive, with legal proof of the applicant's good conduct and of his means of subsistence, the names of his wife and children if he have any, and that he has either resided one year in the territory or sailed for six months in a war or merchant vessel of the republic, or owns real estate of a certain value, or is married to a Venezuelan woman, or that he has rendered important service to the state.
If approved, letters of naturalization are sent to the governor, who delivers them upon the applicant's taking an oath before him or before the jefe politico that he will obey the constitution and laws; and the wife and minor children become naturalized with him, their names and ages being indorsed upon the letters. In Ecuador a foreigner may be naturalized if he owns real estate or $1,000 in money, or is engaged in some industrial pursuit, upon making known his intention to the governor of a province; in Colombia, by sending a memorial through the governor of a province to the executive, stating the applicant's nationality, and the names of his wife and children if he have any, and by taking an oath to obey the constitution and laws and renouncing his former allegiance, his wife and minor children becoming naturalized with him. - In the states of Central America the more general rule is, as in Brazil, to naturalize the alien either by the executive or by a legislative act. In Costa Rica an application must be made to the president of the republic, accompanied by proof that the petitioner has resided there six years, of his good conduct during that period, and of his having honest means of subsistence.
Letters of naturalization are then granted him by the president on renouncing his previous national allegiance. In Honduras a foreigner is naturalized by acquiring real estate and a residence of four years, but if one marries a Hondurian wife this period is reduced to two years; or a letter of naturalization may be obtained from the legislature for services rendered to the state, for an important improvement in agriculture or the arts, or for introducing a new manufacture in the country. In San Salvador he is naturalized by acquiring real estate and a residence of five years, or by contracting marriage with a Salvadorian woman and a residence of three years, or by obtaining a letter of naturalization from the legislative body in the same way and for the same causes as in Honduras. In Nicaragua letters of naturalization may be granted by congress after two years' residence in the republic. In most of the states of Central America naturalization is granted by the legislature to resident foreigners generally upon application, without insisting upon any conditions; the clause that it is upon the ground of important services to the state, etc, being usually inserted in the letters of naturalization as a mere matter of form.
In the foregoing enumeration some countries are omitted, because their laws could not be accurately ascertained, and many countries of Asia and Africa are not noticed for the reason that they have no regulations upon the subject. In the largest of these countries, China, foreigners are by the imperial code perpetually excluded, except within certain prescribed limits, unless where provision is made for more extended privileges by treaty.