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Registry Files Image Galleries

Registry Files
Registry Files were opened between 1929 and 1944 to create arrival records for immigrants who arrived before 1924 (most between 1906 and 1924) but for whom no arrival record could be found. Most who applied for Registry did so to obtain the arrival record required fornaturalization. 
Applicants had to prove they were resident in the United States prior to July 1, 1924.
Picture of an array of old documents that may be found in a Registry genealogy file.

The images shown in this gallery are of typical documents found in Registry Files and are for representative purposes only. Some data have been omitted due to privacy reasons. Documents availability vary by case.

Registry Application

Registry Files opened with a 4-page application document.  The form changed over time but includes extensive biographical information, including the full and maiden names of both parents, details about the applicant’s arrival in the US, and specific data on their employment and residential history in the US.

 

Employment Records

To prove residence in the US prior to July 1, 1924, some Registry applicants submitted employment records.

 

Reference Letters

Some Registry applicants also submitted character references from friends or employers.

 

Affidavits

To prove residence in the US prior to July 1, 1924, some Registry applicants submitted sworn affidavits from friends, neighbors, or co-workers.

 

Account/Financial Records

To prove residence in the US prior to July 1, 1924, some Registry applicants submitted bank account or financial records.

 

Church Records

To prove residence in the US prior to July 1, 1924, some Registry applicants submitted church records.

 

Police/Criminal Background Check Records

To prove residence in the US prior to July 1, 1924, most Registry applicants submitted police or criminal background check records.

 

"Findings" Document

The documents submitted, results of investigation, and applicant’s eligibility was summarized in a “Findings” document recommending the application be granted or denied.

 

"Decision" Document

The final Registry File document is a decision showing the application was granted or denied.  It summarizes the facts in the case and displays all known file numbers related to the immigrant.  There may also be later annotations connected to the naturalization of the immigrant based on the
arrival record created through Registry proceedings.

Image of an old Registry Decision Document from a Registry File.
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