News From Terre Haute, Indiana

History

March 3, 2007

Genealogy: State Archives house all naturalization records up to 1951

TERRE HAUTE — The Indiana State Archives is the place where all naturalization records in Indiana, from its beginning to the year 1951, are to be housed and preserved. The Archives obtains these records from the individual counties, microfilms them, and then adds them to a searchable on-line database. This database is located at the Indiana Commission on Public Records web site at www.in.gov/serv/

icpr_naturalization.

The database can be searched by name and county (or all counties statewide). The results yields the following basic data: full name of the person, his nationality, his date of arrival, and the location of the original record (such as Parke County, Book 1, page 18). This information comes from the county naturalization books only — it doesn’t include any naturalization or citizenship information that would be in the court order books. The order books are still located solely in the individual counties. After getting the basic information on line, the researcher can get a copy of the complete record by contacting the Archives at arc@icpr.in.gov (be sure to put “naturalization records” in the subject line of the e-mail), by phone at (317) 591-5222, or by mail or in person at 6440 E. 30th St., Indianapolis, IN 46219. The Archives are open from 8-4:30 Monday through Friday, and closed on all state holidays.

One of the challenges of finding naturalization information is the fact that immigrants moved around and often made a declaration of intent in one state or county and then later became naturalized in another state or county. This searchable database is helpful in that it can at least search for an ancestor’s name in every county in Indiana. The Web site cautions, however, that the database is not complete and they are adding to it on a regular basis.

Another resource for finding naturalization records, as pointed out on the site, is the National Archives, Great Lakes Region, 7358 S. Pulaski Road, Chicago, IL, 60629. This repository contains the records of everyone naturalized in the Great Lakes Region.

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