Naturalization Records Are Where It’s At

I love, Love, LOVE Naturalization records!  They are one of my favorite set of documents to use for genealogy research. Besides listing the birth date and place of a person, they often contain the exact date of immigration and the name of the ship (making my research into passenger lists SO much easier). Frequently, spouses are listed as well as children with their dates of birth.  They are little goldmines of information and sometimes contain a peek into the personality of the petitioner, if you pay close attention to the details.

Yesterday two collections of naturalization records indexed by the Ancestry World Archives community were RELEASED TO SEARCH. And, I’ve already found a relative in one of them. Hooray! (I found him in the California database. Not Delaware. I don’t have a single person in my entire genealogy database who lived in Delaware. Weird.)

California Naturalization Originals
These records are for Los Angeles and San Diego counties and span the years 1876 to 1940. We added them to the database titled, U.S. Naturalization Records – Original Documents, 1795-1972, along with some of the other naturalization originals our AWAP community has completed over the past couple of years.

Delaware Naturalization Originals
These records are for all three counties in the state of Delaware. There are certificates of naturalization from 1858-1906. There are petitions for naturalization from 1907-1958. And, there are declarations of intention from 1858-1957.

Remember most of those petitions and declarations contain more than one page. So, if you find what you are looking for, be sure to go forward and backward a few images from where you land to make sure you see it all.

Project of the Day Challenge

In honor of the release of two of our naturalization collections, we are issuing another Project of the Day challenge. The top three arbitrators on the New York Naturalization Originals collection will receive a three month, World Deluxe subscription to (or subscription extension). This challenge will run all day (U.S., Mountain Time), Wednesday, August 31st. Any image sets completed and submitted on this day are eligible. Good luck!

Until next time – Happy Keying!

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Reader Comments

Hi Crista, my grandfathers siblings went to California. One of them desseapeared! His name was Neil Sabel, born in Sweden 1876, he was 16 years old, we can not find him! Could you help?

Hi Crista!
Naturalization docs are soooo helpful and important. I’ve been working mostly on the NY docs since I started (although I don’t have much time to do them). Most of my research has stopped due to the fact that I need the NY naturalization documents to verify whether I’ve researched correctly. I’m can’t wait for these to be finished! 🙂

Good idea having people focus on these today. Thanks!

Do you have any idea when naturalization records for Illinois might be available to be keyed?

Have just logged into the keying tool and this blog does not appear in the bottom left hand corner. The last blog displayed is the one for 24th August.

Also I was getting an error message when I tried to download image sets around 15:00 (GMT) so I was unable to arbitrate any more record types.

I am suprised that anyone noticed the Challenge. I only just noticed it when I went into my Facebook updates just now and Facebook says that your update only appeared 13 hours ago.

Hello Crista!

Can you tell me what is the status of the prize which I won during the latest challenge? Which one can I get? Thank you.


I worked on the arbitration challenge.Did about 130 image sets.
I’m sure that won’t be in the top three,but it helped the backlog.
But do please list the finishes.I want to see if I made the top ten.

I did find a fun name in the sets;
Cilly Katz.

Thanks to all of you who participated in the Project of the Day challenge to arbitrate the New York Naturalization Originals. For the first time in months, our arbitration outpaced our keying on this project. In fact, arbitration on this project on Wednesday was up over 400% from our daily average over the past several weeks. Way to go! And, thank you to all who participated. I would love to see us get through the arbitration backlog on this project.

The winners of our challenge are:

Aline D – 490 records
Kris C – 385 records
Karen W – 384 records


For the rest of you, watch this blog for another chance to win with the next project of the day challenge coming up in about a week. Enjoy this weekend. And, for those of you in the U.S. – enjoy your holiday.

Until next time – Happy Keying!

Hey, I hope this means Pennsylvania Naturalization records will go live! I’ve been waiting for them for over a year!! I have tons of family from the area, AND many friends who these records would be valuable to.

When will they be ready??

Crista: I like your excitement about naturalization papers. However I think you should also mention that depending on the times and the dates a very large number of immigrants never filled out even the first papers indication a declaration of intent. Early on there was no requirement that anyone do so and so many did not. So if you are counting on naturalization records as a source of information be aware that you may not find anything because some of our ancesters just never got around to it. I do not know what that does for the decendants such as us, but for a long time no one seemed to care.

I would like to second everything Dana said about Pennsylvania. Why does it take so dad-blasted long?

Are arbitrators also doing keying? How do you get there, and how do they have the time?? Seriously, such intense endeavors.
I have been exclusively entering the Kansas GAR and have learned so much about our post-Civil War and caused me to read about “Bloody Kansas”, etc. Most interesting. Those GAR members seem like I knew them, following membership down the years…
Hope there are some more like this.

I cant wait until we get the New York Naturalization records keyed!! I am stuck on my great grandfather who came from Greece. I know he changed his name but no idea what it was… Now i am stuck but lookin forward to the release…

When I am keying NYC Immigration/Nauralization forms, I sometimes refer to the previous form in the set to see if the new one is a duplicate or see if I can fins a better readable name. When I return to the open form, it has been changes to form 1 automatically. Can this be changed not to change info already given? Also when i scroll up to see which form it is, then pick a form, it immediately scolls back to the bottom of the form. This is also irritating and time consuming. I have keyed nearly 2000 now and still have no accuracy rating. It would be nice to know I am not doing something wrong over and oveer. I opw I am contributing. thanks.

I’ve been trying to find more information on my father side but like i’m stuck. Really don’t know what I’m doing

Yes I have been keying naturalization records for nearly a year now. Can someone tell me when the issue with the New York Originals image sets that cropped up again will be fixed? Over 80 percent of the image sets I downloaded over the past two weeks would not open and had to be cancelled.