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Today in legal history...

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

President Adams signed first of the Alien and Sedition Acts into law
Zachariah Rivenbark at 12:00 AM ET

On June 18, 1798, US President John Adams signed the Naturalization Act of 1798, the first of four pieces of legislation collectively referred to as the Alien and Sedition Acts, into law. The act repealed in part the Naturalization Act of 1795 by increasing the period of time required for immigrants to reside in the US from five years to 14 years. The 1798 act maintained the requirement that immigrants had to be white to receive citizenship and could not be citizens of a nation at war with the US. In 1802, Congress repealed the Naturalization Act of 1798 due to public backlash against the Alien and Sedition Acts.

US President John Adams

Learn more about citizenship from the JURIST news archive.

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