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North Dakota Naturalization Records

New citizens in a new land . . . honor your North Dakota ancestors

Naturalization records created after 1906 are among the most valuable of genealogical documents. If you have ever had the good fortune to obtain copies of the post-1906 naturalization records of an ancestor, then you have some first-hand experience of their true value.

You can obtain the naturalization records of your North Dakota ancestors.

We are able to research the naturalization records of North Dakota to look for your foreign-born ancestors who applied for United States citizenship in North Dakota.

We will research the name of your foreign-born ancestor to see if he or she filed naturalization papers in the district courts of North Dakota, and will advise you by return email. You can purchase photocopies of your ancestors' naturalization records, if you desire. These valuable documents may be at your fingertips just for the asking.

We charge a flat fee of $5 to send you photocopies of one naturalization document.

Please send information to:

Time Passages Genealogy
42080 Gibbel Road
Hemet, CA 92544-9262

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Why did people file naturalization records anyway?
To get free land from the United States government.

Owning land in the United States required foreign-born persons to apply for United States citizenship. Citizenship is also a requirement to vote and to serve in public office.

In the early years of homesteading in the Dakotas, an immigrant arriving in the United States filed naturalization papers as an integral part of applying for a homestead land grant from the United States government -- to obtain free land!

Homestead applicants were required to present evidence that they were United States citizens or had applied for citizenship. Every homestead application filed by a foreign-born person included at least a declaration of intention (known as "first papers") affirming the person's intent to become a United States citizen. In later years, applying for citizenship enabled foreign-born persons to purchase land.

In the boom years of homesteading in the Dakotas, only the head-of-household was required to become a naturalized citizen, since the remainder of the family automatically became naturalized when the head-of-household received the "final papers." Because women and children automatically became United States citizens when the husband or father acquired citizenship, relatively few naturalization records exist for women immigrants.

Separate records were not required until 1928, when both spouses were required to file applications. In later years, separate records were also required for children.

A foreign-born person could go before any local, state, or federal court and declare his or her intention to become a citizen after having resided in the United States for a specified period of time. Before September 27, 1906, naturalization records were kept exclusively in the local, state, or federal courts. After that date, naturalization records were also forwarded to the Immigration and Naturalization Service in Washington, DC.

What information is found in naturalization records?

Naturalization records are composed of two sets of documents:

Declaration of Intention -- "First Papers"
Petition for Naturalization -- "Second or Final Papers"

Knowing the approximate date of naturalization of persons being researched will determine what information researchers may expect to find about their ancestors. Researchers also need to consider possible variations in name spellings, including name changes due to marriage or other legal reasons, which may have occurred from the time that the "first papers" were filed to the time that the "second or final papers" were recorded.

The initial Declaration of Intention usually preceded the formal Petition for Naturalization to become a United States citizen by two or more years.

Each naturalization record can contain different information, which is likely to be fairly minimal prior to the early 1900s than in subsequent years, but researchers can expect to find some or all of the following documents:

The Declaration of Intention (First Papers) was an instrument by which an applicant for United States citizenship renounced allegiance to a foreign sovereignty and declared his or her intention to become a United States citizen.

Prior to September 1906, Declaration of Intention forms usually requested relatively minimal information about the applicant, including name of the person requesting citizenship, year and country of birth, port of entry and month and year of entry into the United States, name of foreign sovereign, signature, and date of request.

After September 1906, Declaration of Intention forms requested increasingly more detailed information about the applicant, including name, age, occupation, personal description, place and date of birth, current address, country of emigration, name of vessel, last foreign residence, name of foreign sovereign, port of entry and month and year of entry into the United States, signature, and date of request.

Beginning in the late 1920s, Declaration of Intention forms also requested information about other family members.

The Petition for Naturalization (Second or Final Papers) was an instrument by which an applicant who had declared his or her intention to become a United States citizen, and had met the residency requirements, made formal application for United States citizenship.

Prior to September 1906, information on the Petition for Naturalization was often limited to the petitioner's name, address, occupation, date and country of birth, and port and date of arrival in the United States.

After September 1906, subsequent versions of the Petition for Naturalization required increasingly more detailed information, including petitioner's name, residence, occupation, date and place of birth, race, date and place of Declaration of Intention, marital status, name of spouse, date and place of marriage, date and place of spouse's birth, date and place where spouse entered the United States, if applicable, residence of spouse, names, dates of birth, and place of residence of children, last foreign residence, port of emigration, port of entry and date of arrival, petitioner's name at time of arrival, name of vessel or other conveyance, name of foreign sovereign, length of time, dates and places of residency in the United States, signature, and date of document.

Part of the Petition for Naturalization also includes a place for signed and dated affidavits of two witnesses, Certificate of Arrival file number, and Declaration of Intention file number. After 1930, the Petition for Naturalization often includes a photograph of the petitioner.

The Certificate of Arrival certified that the immigration records show that an alien arrived at a port on a certain date, and was lawfully admitted to the United States for permanent residence. The Certificate of Arrival includes the alien's name, port of entry, date of arrival, manner of arrival (name of ship for immigrants arriving by sea, or railway or other conveyance for immigrants arriving by land), and date of document.

The Certificate of Citizenship was an instrument by which a petitioner was granted United States citizenship. The Certificate of Naturalization includes name, address, birthplace or nationality, country from which emigrated, birthdate or age, personal description, marital status, names of spouse, age or birthdate of spouse, address of spouse, names, ages, and addresses of children, and date of document.

The Oath of Allegience was an instrument by which the petitioner renounced allegiance to a foreign country and declared his or her allegiance to the United States. The Oath of Allegiance includes the petitioner's signature, and date of document.

North Dakota
Naturalization Records

North Dakota County

Years for which Naturalization Records are available


1907 - 1944


1879 - 1948


1899 - 1955


1890 - 1941


1890 - 1955


1908 - 1941


1904 - 1955


1873 - 1955


1873 - 1944


1884 - 1955


1882 - 1947


1913 - 1943


1908 - 1942


1885 - 1946


1886 - 1955


1883 - 1940

Golden Valley

1913 - 1929

Grand Forks

1877 - 1956


1913 - 1944


1882 - 1945


1907 - 1943


1882 - 1927


1882 - 1954


1906 - 1948


1889 - 1956


1885 - 1948


1905 - 1957


1886 - 1947


1886 - 1943


1881 - 1957


1909 - 1943


1883 - 1954


1890 - 1945


1857 - 1956


1889 - 1955


1883 - 1955


1881 - 1946


1910 - 1966


1880 - 1954


1890 - 1955


1883 - 1946


1909 - 1929


1915 - 1943


1929 - 1943


1883 - 1965


1883 - 1948


1874 - 1954


1884 - 1953


1879 - 1947


1882 - 1955


1886 - 1956


1885 - 1954


1892 - 1934

If your foreign-born ancestor actually filed naturalization papers in North Dakota, chances are excellent that we will find them for you! Our highest priority is to provide unsurpassed quality of research and extraordinary personal service.

If you are not 100% satisfied with the information that you receive from us, we will refund your money.






Time Passages Genealogy
42080 Gibbel Road
Hemet, CA 92544-9262
(701) 588-4541