Colorado Emigration and Immigration

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Colorado Wiki Topics
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Beginning Research
Record Types
Colorado Background
Cultural Groups
Local Research Resources

How to Find the Records[edit | edit source]

Colorado, being entirely inland, has no seaports. Immigrants would have initially arrived at a port on the coast. To search those records, see United States Immigration Online Genealogy Records.

Online Resources[edit | edit source]

Cultural Groups[edit | edit source]

Passport Records Online[edit | edit source]

Published Pioneer Sources[edit | edit source]

Offices to Contact[edit | edit source]

Although many records are included in the online records listed above, there are other records available through these archives and offices. For example, there are many minor ports that have not yet been digitized. There are also records for more recent time periods. For privacy reasons, some records can only be accessed after providing proof that your ancestor is now deceased.

U.S. Citizenship and and Immigration Services Genealogy Program[edit | edit source]

The USCIS Genealogy Program is a fee-for-service program that provides researchers with timely access to historical immigration and naturalization records of deceased immigrants. If the immigrant was born less than 100 years ago, you will also need to provide proof of his/her death.

Immigration Records Available[edit | edit source]
  • A-Files: Immigrant Files, (A-Files) are the individual alien case files, which became the official file for all immigration records created or consolidated since April 1, 1944.
  • Alien Registration Forms (AR-2s): Alien Registration Forms (Form AR-2) are copies of approximately 5.5 million Alien Registration Forms completed by all aliens age 14 and older, residing in or entering the United States between August 1, 1940 and March 31, 1944.
  • Registry Files: Registry Files are records, which document the creation of immigrant arrival records for persons who entered the United States prior to July 1, 1924, and for whom no arrival record could later be found.
  • Visa Files: Visa Files are original arrival records of immigrants admitted for permanent residence under provisions of the Immigration Act of 1924.[1]
Requesting a Record[edit | edit source]

Germans from Russia[edit | edit source]

Germans from Russia Heritage Society
1008 E Central Ave
Bismarck, ND 58501
USA
Telephone: 701-223-6167
The focus is on the Black Sea and Bessarabian Germans with assistance for the Caucasus, Crimea and other regions close to the Black Sea, with some help for other areas as well.

Finding Town of Origin[edit | edit source]

Records in the countries emigrated from are kept on the local level. You must first identify the name of the town where your ancestors lived to access those records. If you do not yet know the name of the town of your ancestor's birth, there are well-known strategies for a thorough hunt for it.

Background[edit | edit source]

  • Since the 1840s, when the first Mexican land grants were made in southeastern Colorado, there has been a Hispanic population in the state. Settlers from the older Spanish colonies of New Mexico were in the San Luis Valley as early as 1851.
  • Most pre-statehood settlers of Colorado began arriving at the time of the gold rush of 1858. They came from the northeastern and midwestern states, especially New York, Illinois, Missouri, Ohio, and Pennsylvania. Some came from the New Mexico Territory, and a few settlers came from the southern states, the Pacific Coast, and from other countries including England, Ireland, Germany, Sweden, Scotland, and Wales.
  • Latter-day Saint settlements were made in the San Luis Valley in the 1870s and 1880s.
  • By 1910 residents not born in Colorado came primarily from Missouri, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Ohio, and Nebraska.
  • About 16 percent of the 1910 population was from overseas, chiefly from Germany, Italy, England, Russia, Sweden, and Austria.
  • Many of those from Russia were actually of German origin.
  • Foreign immigration declined after 1910 except for a major immigration from Mexico in the 1920s and 1930s.
  • The Plains Indians of Colorado, including the Arapaho, the Cheyenne, the Kiowa, and the Comanche, had largely been removed to Indian Territory in Oklahoma by 1870. (See Indigenous Peoples of Colorado). The Ute Indians living in western Colorado did not give up their lands to white settlement until after 1880, when most of them were moved to reservations in Utah.
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Immigration Records[edit | edit source]

Immigration refers to people coming into a country. Emigration refers to people leaving a country to go to another. Immigration records usually take the form of ship's passenger lists collected at the port of entry. See Online Resources. Again, Colorado, being entirely inland, has no seaports. Immigrants would have initially arrived at a port on the coast. To search those records, see United States Immigration Online Genealogy Records.

What can I find in them?[edit | edit source]

Information in Passenger Lists[edit | edit source]

  • Before 1820 - Passenger lists before 1820 included name, departure information and arrival details. The names of wives and children were often not included.
  • 1820-1891 - Customs Passenger Lists between 1820 and 1891 asked for each immigrant’s name, their age, their sex, their occupation, and their country of origin, but not the city or town of origin.
  • 1891-1954 - Information given on passenger lists from 1891 to 1954 included:
    • name, age, sex,
    • nationality, occupation, marital status,
    • last residence, final destination in the U.S.,
    • whether they had been to the U.S. before (and if so, when, where and how long),
    • if joining a relative, who this person was, where they lived, and their relationship,
    • whether able to read and write,
    • whether in possession of a train ticket to their final destination, who paid for the passage,
    • amount of money the immigrant had in their possession,
    • whether the passenger had ever been in prison, a poorhouse, or in an institution for the insane,
    • whether the passenger was a polygamist,
    • and immigrant's state of health.
  • 1906-- - In 1906, the physical description and place of birth were included, and a year later, the name and address of the passenger’s closest living relative in the country of origin was included.

Information in Passports[edit | edit source]

Over the years, passports and passport applications contained different amounts of information about the passport applicant. The first passports that are available begin in 1795. These usually contained the individual's name, description of individual, and age. More information was required on later passport applications, such as:

  • Birthplace
  • Birth date
  • Naturalization information
  • Arrival information, if foreign born

In-country Migration[edit | edit source]

Colorado Migration Routes[edit | edit source]

For Further Reading[edit | edit source]

The FamilySearch Library has additional sources listed in their catalog:

References[edit | edit source]

Colorado Research Outline. Salt Lake City, Utah: Intellectual Reserve Inc., Family History Department, 1998, 2001.

Note: Information from the original research outline has been imported into the wiki and updated.

[[Category:Colorado, United States|]

  1. "Genealogy", at USCIS, https://www.uscis.gov/records/genealogy, accessed 26 March 2021.