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A Glimpse of American History Through the Process of Becoming a Citizen

Atlas Obscura
December 18, 2017
The year was 1715 and Arien Gerritsen, a Dutch Protestant man living in the colony of New York, had some paperwork to fill out. That year, freshly coronated King George I had mandated that eligible foreign-born Protestants in the colonies renounce their foreign citizenships. So in September, Gerritsen appeared before a judge in Ulster County, abjured Dutch citizenship, pledged an oath of loyalty to the absent monarch, and filled out a form letter sealed with a dribble of red wax. The document was packed with dense thickets of jargon, punctuated by spaces for scribbling in personal details—“kind of like a lease today,” says Nina Nazionale, Director of Library Operations and Curator of Printed Collections at the New-York Historical Society Library. Make your mark, and join the empire. Read more…
Creative: Tronvig Group