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September 24, 2008

Finding Ancestors in Passport Records

Some immigrants applied for passports to return home to visit family or friends. These records usually give a place of birth or at least the destination (which is often the home town)

The first passport issued in USA was dated July 1796. However until 1914 American citizens did not require a passport to travel abroad. NARA has passport applications from October 1795-March 1925. The U. S. Department of State has passport applications from April 1925 to the present.

Passports may include the following information:

family/marital status
birth place and date
naturalization year
name of ship, port and date of entry (after 1900)

Online FREE Passport Records on site are:

* Register of Passports from 14 November 1834 to 1843 an Index for all states in USA
* Index to Special Passports 1829-1887 an Index for all states in USA
* Index to Special Passports 1887-1894 an Index for all states in USA
* Register of Passport Applications 1809-1817
* Index to Emergency & Special Passport Applications 1830-1831

Online pay-to-view Passport Records are:

Passports 1795-1905icon shows Citizenship, residence, family, date & place of birth, occupation

U.S. Passport Applications, 1795-1925 includes emergency passport applications 1877-1907, passport application registers for 1810-1817, 1830-1831, & 1834-1906

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