United States, Index to Alien Case Files (FamilySearch Historical Records)

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United States Index to Alien Case Files, 1940-2003
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This article describes a collection of records at FamilySearch.org.
United States
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Record Description
Record Type Alien Case Files Index
Record Group RG 566: Records of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services
Collection years 1940-2003
National Archives Identifier 5821836
FamilySearch Resources
Related Websites
Archive
National Archives and Records Administration


What is in This Collection?

Index of Alien Case Files housed at the National Archives Regional Office in Kansas City, Missouri. Under the Alien Registration Act of 1940, immigrants in the United States were required to register and be fingerprinted. The Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS)—now the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS)—drew upon the 1940 Alien Registration Form (AR-2) to create Alien Case Files beginning in 1944. Immigrants recorded in these files come from all over the United States. Some files from aliens living in the immigration districts of Guam; Honolulu, Hawaii; Reno, Nevada; and San Francisco, California are housed in the National Archives Regional Office of San Bruno, California and may not be included in this index. The Affiliate Record Number refers to the Alien Registration Number. For additional information on the alien case files click on the link below for NAID 4488912.

What Can These Records Tell Me?

The following information may be found in these records:

Case files

  • Alien registration Number (Affiliate Record Identifier)
  • Last Name
  • First Name
  • Alias
  • Date of Birth
  • Sex
  • Date of Entry
  • Country of Birth
  • Father's Name
  • Mother's Name
  • Naturalization Date
  • Naturalization Court
  • Naturalization Location

Collection Content

Sample of indexed information:

John Smith United States Index to Alien Case Files
Name John Smith
Event Type Immigration
Event Date 20 May 1914
Birth Date 18 Sep 1892
Birth Country Finland
Arrival Place New York, Ny
Mother's Name Smith

How Do I Search This Collection?

To begin your search, it is helpful to know:

  • The full name of your ancestor
  • The approximate date of registration or date case file was created

Search the Index

Search by name by visiting the Collection Page.
  1. Fill in the search boxes on the Collection Page with the information you have
  2. Click Search to show possible matches

How Do I Analyze the Results?

Compare each result from your search with what you know to determine if there is a match. This may require viewing multiple records or images. Keep track of your research in a research log.

What Do I Do Next?

I Found the Person I Was Looking For, What Now?

Use passenger lists to:

  • Learn an immigrant’s place of origin
  • Confirm their date of arrival
  • Learn foreign and “Americanized” names
  • Find records in his or her country of origin such as emigrations, port records, or ship’s manifests
  • Remember, this index is a link to the National Archives database at their Regional Office in Kansas City, Missouri
  • If your ancestor had a common name, be sure to look at all the entries for a name before you decide which is correct
  • Continue to search the record to identify siblings, parents, and other relatives in the same or other generations who may have immigrated at the same time
  • If your ancestor has an uncommon surname, you may want to obtain the record of every person who shares your ancestor’s surname if they lived in the same county or nearby. You may not know how or if they are related, but the information could lead you to more information about your own ancestors

I Can't Find the Person I'm Looking For, What Now?

  • Look for variant spellings of the names. You should also look for alias names, nicknames and abbreviated names
  • Try alternative search methods such as only filling in the surname search box (or the given name search box) on the landing page leaving the other box empty and then click on search. This should return a list of everyone with that particular name. You could then browse the list for individuals that may be your ancestor
  • Search the immigration indexes and records of port cities for your ancestor's year of immigration. If you do not know the year of immigration, search federal census records after 1900

Research Helps

The following articles will help you in your research for your family in the United States.

Citing This Collection

Citations help you keep track of places you have searched and sources you have found. Identifying your sources helps others find the records you used.

Collection Citation
"United States Index to Alien Case Files, 1940-2003." Database. FamilySearch. http://FamilySearch.org : 14 June 2016. Citing "Index to Alien Case Files at the National Archives at Kansas City, ca. 1975 - 2012". NAID 5821836. Records of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, 2003 - 2004, RG 566. National Archives at Kansas City.
Record Citation:
When looking at a record, the citation is found below the record.

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