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of the act to which this is an addition three years previous to his admission: Provided, Such alien shall make the declaration required therein at the time of his or her admission; and shall further declare, on oath, and prove, to the satisfaction of the court, that for three years next preceding it has been the bona fide intention of such alien to become a citizen of the United States, and shall in all other respects comply with the laws in regard to naturalization.
SEC. 2. And be it further enacted, That no certificates of citizenship or naturalization heretofore obtained from any court of record within the United States shall be deemed invalid in consequence of an omission to comply with the requisition of the first section of the act entitled "An act relative to evidence in cases of naturalization," passed the twenty-second day of March, one thousand eight hundred and sixteen.
SEC. 3. And be it further enacted, That the declaration required by the first condition specified in the first section of the act to which this is an addition shall, if the same has been bona fide made before the clerk of either of the courts in the said condition named, be as valid as if it had been made before the said courts respectively.
SEC. 4. And be it further enacted, That a declaration by any alien, being a free white person, of his intended application to be admitted a citizen of the United States, made, in the manner and form prescribed in the first condition specified in the first section of the act to which this is in addition, two years before his admission, shall be a sufficient compliance with said condition, anything in the said act, or in any subsequent act, to the contrary notwithstanding.
Approved May 26, 1824.
AN ACT to amend the acts concerning naturalization.
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That the second section of the act entitled "An act to establish an uniform rule of naturalization, and to repeal the acts heretofore passed on that subject," which was passed on the fourteenth day of April, one thousand eight hundred and two, and the first section of the act entitled "An act relative to evidence in cases of naturalization," passed on the twenty-second day
of March, one thousand eight hundred and sixteen, be, and the same are hereby, repealed.
SEC. 2. And be it further enacted, That any alien, being a free white person, who was residing within the limits and under the jurisdiction of the United States between the fourteenth day of April, one thousand eight hundred and two, and the eighteenth day of June, one thousand eight hundred and twelve, and who has continued to reside within the same, may be admitted to become a citizen of the United States without having made any previous declaration of his intention to become a citizen: Provided, That whenever any person without a certificate of such declaration of intention shall make application to be admitted a citizen of the United States, it shall be proved, to the satisfaction of the court, that the applicant was residing within the limits and under the jurisdiction of the United States before the eighteenth day of June, one thousand eight hundred and twelve, and has continued to reside within the same, or he shall not be so admitted; and the residence of the applicant within the limits and under the jurisdiction of the United States for at least five years immediately preceding the time of such application shall be proved by the oath or affirmation of citizens of the United States, which citizens shall be named in the record as witnesses; and such continued residence within the limits and under the jurisdiction of the United States, when satisfactorily proved, and the place or places where the applicant has resided for at least five years, as aforesaid, shall be stated and set forth, together with the names of such citizens, in the record of the court admitting the applicant: otherwise the same shall not entitle him to be considered and deemed a citizen of the United States.
Approved May 24, 1828.
AN ACT to amend the act entitled "An act for the regulation of seamen on board the public and private vessels of the United States," passed the third of March, eighteen hundred and thirteen.
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That the last clause of the twelfth section of the act hereby amended, consisting of the following words, to wit: "without being at any time during the said five years out of the territory of the United States," be, and the same is hereby, repealed.
Approved June 26, 1848.
AN ACT to secure the right of citizenship to children of citizens of the United States, born out of the limits thereof.
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That persons heretofore born, or hereafter to be born, out of the limits and jurisdiction of the United States, whose fathers were, or shall be at the time of their birth, citizens of the United States, shall be deemed and considered, and are hereby declared, to be citizens of the United States: Provided, however, That the rights of citizenship shall not descend to persons whose fathers never resided in the United States.
SEC. 2. And be it further enacted, That any woman who might lawfully be 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.
Approved February 10, 1855.
JUDGE STORY, in commenting upon the naturalization clause in the 8th Section of Article I. of the Constitution, remarks that
The propriety of confiding the power to establish an uniform. rule of naturalization to the national government seems not to have occasioned any doubt or controversy in the convention. For aught that appears on the journals, it was conceded without objection. Under the confederation, the States possessed the sole authority to exercise the power; and the dissimilarity of the system in different States was generally admitted, as a prominent defect, and laid the foundation of many delicate and intricate questions. As the free inhabitants of each State were entitled to all the privileges and immunities of citizens in all the other States,† it followed, that a single State possessed the power of forcing into every other State, with the enjoyment of every immunity and privilege, any alien whom it might choose to incorporate into its own society, however repugnant such admission might be to their polity, conveniences, and even prejudices. In effect every State possessed the power of
Jour. of Convention, 220, 257.-One of the grievances stated in the Declaration of Independence was, that the king had endeavored to prevent the population of the States by obstructing the laws for naturalization of foreigners.
The Confederation, art. 4.
naturalizing aliens in every other State; a power as mischievous in its nature as it was indiscreet in its actual exercise. In one State, residence for a short time might, and did confer the rights of citizenship. In others, qualifications of greater importance were required. An alien, therefore, incapacitated for the possession of certain rights by the laws of the latter, might, by a previous residence and naturalization in the former, elude at pleasure all their salutary regulations for selfprotection. Thus the laws of a single State were preposterously rendered paramount to the laws of all the others, even within their own jurisdiction.* And it has been remarked with equal truth and justice, that it was owing to mere casualty, that the exercise of this power under the confederation did not involve the Union in the most serious embarrassments.† There is great wisdom, therefore, in confiding to the national government the power to establish a uniform rule of naturalization throughout the United States. It is of the deepest interest to the whole Union to know who are entitled to enjoy the rights of citizens in each State, since they thereby, in effect, become entitled to the rights of citizens in all the States. If aliens might be admitted indiscriminately to enjoy all the rights of citizens at the will of a single State, the Union might itself be endangered by an influx of foreigners, hostile to its institutions, ignorant of its powers, and incapable of a due estimate of its privileges.
It follows, from the very nature of the power, that to be useful, it must be exclusive; for a concurrent power in the States would bring back all the evils and embarrassments, which the uniform rule of the constitution was designed to remedy. And, accordingly, though there was a momentary hesitation, when the constitution first went into operation, whether the power might not still be exercised by the States, subject only to the control of Congress, so far as the legislation of the latter extended, as the supreme law; yet the power is now firm
The Federalist, No. 42.
Collet v. Collet, 2 Dall. R. 294; United States v. Villato, 2 Dall. 270; Sergeant on Const. Law, ch. 28, [ch. 30, 2d edit.]
ly established to be exclusive.* The Federalist, indeed, introduced this very case, as entirely clear, to illustrate the doctrine of an exclusive power by implication, arising from the repugnancy of a similar power in the States. "This power must necessarily be exclusive," say the authors; "because, if each State had power to prescribe a distinct rule, there could be no uniform rule."†
*See the Federalist, No. 32, 42; Chirac v. Chirac, 2 Wheat. R. 259, 269; Rawle on the Const. ch. 9, p. 84, 85 to 88; Houston v. Moore, 5 Wheat. R. 48, 49; Golden v. Prince, 3 Wash. Cir. Ct. R. 313, 322; 1 Kent's Comm. Lect. 19, p. 397; 1 Tuck. Black. Comm. App. 255 to 259; 12 Wheat. R. 277, per Johnson J.; but see Id. 307, per Thompson J.-A question is often discussed under this head, how far a person has a right to throw off his national allegiance, and to become the subject of another country, without the consent of his native country. This is usually denomi nated the right of expatriation. It is beside the purpose of these commentaries to enter into any consideration of this subject, as it does not properly belong to any constitutional inquiry. It may be stated, however, that there is no authority which has affirmatively maintained the right, (unless provided for by the laws of the particular country,) and there is a very strong current of reasoning on the other side, independent of the known practice and claims of the nations of modern Europe. See Rawle on the Constitution, ch. 9, p. 85 to 101; Sergeant on Const. Law, ch. 28, [ch. 30;] 2 Kent's Comm. Lect. 25, p. 35 to 42.
The Federalist, No. 32.