Stephania Meleski’s Naturalization Index Card

While looking for my grandmother, Helen Niedzialkowski, in the Naturalization Index, I thought I’d also look for her sister, Stephanie Meleski.  I found the record on the same roll of microfilm as the record for Helen.

Stephania Meleski's Naturalization Index Card

Index Card for the Naturalization of Stephania Meleski

Click on the link for a PDF copy of the Index Card for the Naturalization of Stephania Meleski – 1944.  The card states that she was granted Certificate of Naturalization No. 6119990, that her name was Stephania Meleski, that she lived at 15 Charlton St. Worcester, Mass., that she was 58 years old at the date of admission (meaning that she was born in about 1885-1886), and that she became a citizen on Mar. 2, 1944 (her Certificate of Naturalization was dated the same day) at the Superior Court at Worcester, Mass.  She had filed Petition of Naturalization No. 39405.

The information on this card provided enough information to look for Stephania’s Naturalization Papers, since the records for 1944 have been microfilmed.  Stephania’s Certificate of Naturalization was No. 6119990 and her Petition for Naturalization was No. 39405.

In addition to the information on how to find Stephania’s Naturalization Papers, the Index Card provides several useful pieces of information.  Stephania was living at 15 Charlton St. in Worcester, Massachusetts in 1944.  This is useful information since I haven’t been able to find Stephania in the Census Records.  The second useful piece of information is that she spelled her name Stephania Meleski, not Stephanie Meleski as I previously thought.

Although the Index Card does not provide a space for an Alien Registration Number, Stephania would have been required to register as an alien in response to the Alien Registration Act of 1940.  All aliens over the age of 14 were required to fill out a two page form (the AR-2, including a perforated section, the AR-3)) at their local post office.  After the form was processed, the AR-3 (the Alien Registration Card) was torn from the AR-2 and mailed to the applicant.  Aliens were required to carry this card with them.

Most aliens registered between July and December 1940.  Registrations completed between July 1940 and April 1944 have been microfilmed and were placed in the custody of the Immigration and Naturalization Service.  These records are searchable by name, date of birth, and place of birth, and copies of these records may be obtained through the Freedom of Information Act.

Further information on the Alien Registration Act is available at the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) website.  Requests for the alien registration documents may be made on a Form G-639, Freedom of Information/Privacy Act Request.  No fees are required until you are notified by the USCIS.  The first 100 pages of reproduction and two hours of search time are provided without charge unless the requester is a commercial organization.  Be prepared for a long wait (more than six months) before receiving the papers.  I’m sending in the forms for my ancestors this week.

The last piece of information I obtained from the Naturalization Index was a complete surprise for me, and it appeared on the very next image after Stephania’s Index Card.

Tomorrow:  The Surprise!

Copyright © 2006 by Stephen J. Danko

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