Utah Department of Administrative Services

Division of Archives & Records Service

Series 85108

District Court (Third District : Salt Lake County) Declarations of intention record books

Dates: 1896-1959.

7.00 cubic feet and 20 microfilm reelsSkip to Containers

These records are housed in the Utah State Archives' permanent storage room.

Historical Note

An agency history is available.

Scope and Content

To become a citizen of the United States, an individual normally filed a "declaration of intention to become a citizen" at least two years prior to applying for citizenship. The next step was the naturalization hearing at which the candidate and witnesses either made oral statements or filed written petitions and affidavits attesting to the applicant's character, worthiness to become a citizen, and the validity of statements made to the court. If the judge found the applicant eligible to become a citizen, an oath was administered and the individual renounced his former citizenship. At this point a certificate of citizenship was issued documenting the fact. These volumes contain only declarations of intention of individuals to become United States citizens.

In the declaration an applicant vows that he plans to later become a U.S. citizen and to renounce his current citizenship. The first volume contains preprinted forms which have blanks for the insertion of the individual's name, his sovereign, date, and signatures of the individual and the court clerks witnessing the statement.

Beginning in 1906, the Bureau of Immigration and Naturalization of the Department of Commerce and Labor (later the Naturalization Service of the U.S. Dept. of Labor) was to furnish the court clerks with the necessary blank forms. The forms were furnished in bound volumes as a court record. Each volume was to be indexed and the declarations numbered consecutively beginning with number 1 in volume 1. Loose sheets were also furnished so the duplicate copy could be given to the declarant and the triplicate copy mailed to the Bureau of Naturalization.

These forms contain blanks for the name and location of the court; the individual's name, age, occupation, color, complexion, height, weight, hair color, eye color, visible distinctive marks, birthplace, birthdate, and current residence; the location from which he emigrated to the United States and the vessel name; his last foreign residence; the name and title of the ruler to whom he would be renouncing allegiance; and the port and date of arrival in the United States.

By 1916, additional blanks were inserted to record his marital status, and if married, his wife's name (altered to allow for "spouse's name" after 1922 when married women could seek citizenship on their own instead of automatically assuming the nationality of their husbands), birthplace and birthdate. He was to take an oath that he was not an anarchist or polygamist, and that it was his intention to become a United States citizen and make the country his permanent residence. Blanks were provided for his signature and for the date and signatures of the court clerks who witnessed his oath.

By the 1930s, more blanks were added for sex, race, present nationality, marriage date and place, the number of children with their names, birthdate, birthplace, and residence; any previous declaration of intention, with number, location, and court; and his or her name at entry.

In 1941, the Immigration and Naturalization Service was moved to the U.S. Department of Justice. A sentence was added regarding any departures from the United States with a table in which to record dates of departure and return, the ports used, and the vessel name. The anti-polygamy clause was dropped from the oath, but the statement regarding anarchy was expanded.

In 1952, the filing of a declaration of intention became an optional rather than a mandatory step in naturalizations. By 1957, the forms were simplified to include name, residence, age, birthdate, birthplace, sex, complexion, eye color, hair color, height, weight, visible marks, citizenship, spouse name, admission place for permanent residence, name at entry, date, and ship name. The oath simply verified the accuracy of the form's completion and the individual's intention to become a citizen.

Arrangement

Chronological by date, thereunder numerical by entry number.

Related Records

Naturalization record books from the District Court (Third District : Salt Lake County), Series 3573, record naturalizations for the county after statehood in 1896, to some of the same individuals whose declarations are filed in this series.

Declarations of intention and certificate of citizenship record books from the Territorial Supreme Court, Series 3942, of the Supreme Court may contain earlier declarations of Salt Lake County residents as the Court included records of the 1st and 3rd districts from 1852-1860 and Salt Lake County.

Declarations of intention and certificates of citizenship record book from Salt Lake County (Utah). Probate Court, Series 85109, from the Salt Lake County Probate Court contains declarations of Salt Lake county residents before statehood in 1896.

Citizenship certificate stubs from the District Court (Third District : Salt Lake County), Series 85112, often cite declarations of intention recorded in this series.

Additional Forms

This series is available on microfilm.

Access Restrictions

This series is classified as Public.

Preferred Citation

Cite the Utah State Archives and Records Service, the creating agency name, the series title, and the series number.

Finding Aids

Indexes: Most volumes have their own index. After volume 25 several are indexed only in a composite intentions/petitions index located in series 3573. Entries are alphabetical by the first letter of the individual's surname, covering from September 31, 1896 thru 1959.

Indexing Terms

  • Declaration of intention--Utah--Salt Lake County.
  • Naturalization--Utah--Salt Lake County.
  • Emigration and immigration--Utah--Salt Lake County.
  • Citizenship--Utah--Salt Lake County.

Container List

REEL BOX VOLUME DATE DESCRIPTION
1 1 N/A 1896-1906 N/A
2 2 1 1906-1907 1-100
3 2 2 1907-1908 101-400
3 2 3 1908-1909 401-557
4 2 3 1908-1909 557-900
4 2 4 1906-1910 901-1400
4 2 5 1910-1911 1401-1575
5 2 5 1911 1575-1900
5 2 6 1911-1912 1901-2400
5 3 7 1912-1913 2401-2589
6 3 7 1913-1914 2589-2896
6 3 8 1914-1915 2897-3396
6 3 9 1915-1916 3397-3651
7 3 9 1916-1917 3651-3896
7 3 10 1917 3897-4396
7 3 11 1917-1918 4397-4731
8 3 11 1918 4731-4896
8 3 12 1918-1919 4897-5396
8 3 13 1919 5397-5739
9 3 13 1920-1921 5739-5896
9 4 14 1920-1921 5897-6396
9 4 15 1921-1922 6397-6739
10 4 15 1922 6739-6896
10 4 16 1922-1923 6897-7392
10 4 17 1923-1924 7393-7703
11 4 17 1924 7703-7892
11 4 18 1924-1926 7893-8392
11 4 18 1926 8393-8745
12 4 19 1926-1927 8745-8892
12 5 20 1927 8893-8994
12 5 21 1927 8995-9094
12 5 22 1927-1928 9095-9194
12 5 23 1928 9195-9295
12 5 24 1928 9296-9397
13 5 25 1928-1929 9398-9497
13 5 26 1929 9498-9642
13 5 27 1929-1934 9643-10042
13 5 28 1934-1935 10043-10175
14 5 29 1936-1937 10443-10842
14 6 30 1937-1939 10843-11242
14 6 31 1939 11243-11297
15 6 31 1939-1940 11298-11642
15 6 32 1940-1943 11643-12222
15 6 33 1943-1944 12223-12246
16 6 33 1945-1948 12247-12422
16 6 34 1948-1949 12423-12622
16 6 35 1949 12623-12800
16 7 36 1949-1950 12801-13000
16 7 37 1950 13001-13200
16 7 38 1950 13201-13202
17 7 38 1950-1951 13203-13400
17 7 39 1951 13401-13600
17 7 40 1951-1952 13601-13800
18 7 41 1952 13801-13950
19 7 42 1952-1957 13951-14298
20 7 42 1957-1959 14299-14468