Australia Naturalization and Citizenship

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Naturalization is the process of granting citizenship privileges and responsibilities to residents. Those who immigrated to Australia from anywhere in the British Commonwealth did not have to become naturalized upon entering the country.

The names of those who became citizens were recorded in citizenship books dating from about 1825. These books include information about the citizen including his or her name, age, social and economic status, occupation and training, and sometimes birthplace. Until the twentieth century, only males of the middle or upper classes were granted citizenship, including landowners, merchants, and tradesmen.

Naturalization records are housed in a variety of record offices throughout Australia. The following source provides information on the time period covered by these records and the location of the record offices:

  • Vine Hall, Nick. Tracing Your Family History in Australia: a guide to sources. Second Edition. Albert Park, Victoria, Australia: North Vine Hall, 1994. (Family History Library Call Number 994 D23v.)

The Family History Library has obtained copies of some citizenship records for Australia. For example, the Aliens’ Oaths, 1858–1904 was recorded in the Queensland Supreme Court (Family History Library Microfilms 918090–919027). Most citizenship records are listed in the Place Search of the Family History Library Catalog under: