Research Guidance

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USCIS continues to build upon the historical legacy of the Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS). Research with INS records can provide historians, genealogists, and other scholars with a better understanding of USCIS’ institutional precursors as well as the history of federal immigration and nationality policies.

Historical federal immigration and naturalization records can be divided into two groups:

          1) Topics and Events; and

          2) Individuals.

More information about each will be found on its respective pages.


Topics and EventsIndividuals

Most helpful for:

Students and scholarly researchers interested in agency history or a specific topic related to immigration history, from 1891-present.

Researchers interested in the history of federal immigration and nationality laws, policies, and procedures.

Most helpful for:

Family historians looking for information about an ancestor or a specific historical immigration record.

Scholarly researchers searching for records related to an individual immigrant (biographical research).



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