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Research Guides


Safe Haven: Records of the Jewish Experience in Australia


4. Naturalisation Records

Naturalisation records are among the most valuable sources of biographical detail on Jewish immigrants and settlers of non-British origin. As with other migrant selection, passenger and immigrant case records, the National Archives has substantial holdings of naturalisation and citizenship material. What follows is a representative sampling of series and items of likely use and interest to people searching for details about non-British Jewish immigrants. For a full description of series which contain naturalisation materials, researchers are advised to consult Finding Families: The Guide to the National Archives of Australia for Genealogists.

Although the naturalisation process has been a Federal responsibility since 1904, the National Archives holds records for the colonies of Victoria (1852–1903) and South Australia (1848–1903). Pre-1904 naturalisation records for New South Wales, Tasmania, Queensland and Western Australia are maintained by the appropriate State Government archives.

For the colony of Victoria, see:

LETTERS RECEIVED, ANNUAL SINGLE NUMBER SERIES WITH LETTER PREFIX OR INFIX, 1851–
Canberra
The series consists of letters about naturalisations in Victoria, and naturalisation certificates (the bulk of the series). Details on certificates include applicant's name, age, place of origin, occupation, place of residence, date of arrival in Victoria. The certificates are entered in (microfilm) registers of naturalisation: A9377 (for 1851–1861) and A728 (for 1861–1903).
Series: A712
Quantity: 50.76 metres
Recorded by: 1853–1855: Colonial Secretary's Office, Colony of Victoria (CA 1328); 1855–1903: Chief Secretary's Office (CA 1329)
Abramovich, Isaack; Hoffmeister, Gottfried; Cohen, Joseph... Wittkowski, Julius... Myers, Abraham... Tartakover, Marcus... Isaacson, Solomon... Bernstein, Marcus... Levinson, Hyman – Naturalisation, 1856 A712, 1856/10106
Solomons, Isidore; Hamburger, Simon... Schappere, Solomon [etc] – Naturalisation, 1856 A712, 1856/10229
Cohen, Mendel – naturalisation, 1873 A712, 1873/C11520
Goldreich, Israel Morris – Naturalisation, 1893 A712, 1893/V753
Lenzer, Jacob – Naturalisation, 1890 A712, 1890/Q9744

For the colony of South Australia, see:

MEMORIALS OF NATURALISATION, WITH UNENROLLED AND UNCOLLECTED CERTIFICATES (SA), 1848–58
Canberra
The series consists of memorials of naturalisation and certificates.
Series: A821
Quantity: 6.3 metres
Recorded by: 1848–1858: General Registry Office (CA 1281)
EPSTEIN, Baruch Leon, 1850 A821, 45/Folio 9
EPSTEIN, Baruch Leon [Memorial and Certificate of Naturalisation], 1850 A821, 88
MEMORIALS and CERTIFICATES OF NATURALISATION (UNENROLLED OR UNCOLLECTED) FOR SOUTH AUSTRALIA UNDER ACT 20 OF 21 VIC, 1858–64
Canberra
The series consists of memorials and certificates of people living in SA for whom the naturalisation process does not appear to have been completed.
Series: A822
Quantity: 0.36 metres
Recorded by: 1858–1864: General Registry Office (CA 1281)
Naturalisations (unenrolled or uncollected) for South Australia 1863 – Klisser, Charles Levi A822, 1863/Klisser C L
ENROLLED CERTIFICATES OF NATURALISATION and MEMORIALS 1859–66
Canberra
The series consists of enrolled certificates as well as correspondence and some memorials.
Series: A823
Quantity: 0.18 metres
Recorded by: 1859–1865: General Registry Office (CA 1281)
Kosminsky, Joseph, 1862–64 A823, 1/1864
MEMORIALS OF NATURALISATION (SA), 1865–1903
Canberra
This series consists of memorials of naturalisation (1865–1903) and certificates of naturalisation (1865–1879) in SA.
Series: A711
Quantity: 10.98 metres
Recorded by: MEMORIALS OF NATURALISATION (SA), 1865–1903 (CA 1281)
Berliner, Samuel – Memorial of naturalisation, 1882 A711, 1430
Munn, Cohen – Memorial of naturalisation, 1891 A711, 2736
Mendelsohn, Max – Memorial of naturalisation, 1891 A711, 2740
Joseph, Solomon – Memorial of naturalisation, 1893 A711, 2853

Other National Archives sources for colonial South Australian naturalisations are:

BOOKS OF ENROLLED CERTIFICATES OF NATURALISATION, ISSUED 1848–58, ENROLLED, 1850–88
Series: A729
Recorded by: General Registry Office (CA 1281)
VOLUMES OF ENROLLED LETTERS OF NATURALISATION, 1865–1903
Series: A733
Recorded by: General Registry Office (CA 1281)

Indexes to colonial South Australian naturalisations are:

INDEX TO ALIENS, NOMINAL INDEX BOOK TO CERTIFICATES OF NATURALISATION, ISSUED 1848–58, ENROLLED 1850–88
Series: A731
Recorded by: General Registry Office - Registrar General of Deeds Department (CA 1281 )
NOMINAL INDEX FOR PRE-1904 SOUTH AUSTRALIAN NATURALISATIONS, 1850–89
Series: A7419
Recorded by: Australian Archives, Central Office (CA 1720)

Since the end of 1903, naturalisation has been the exclusive responsibility of the Federal Government and appropriate records are generally held and maintained in Canberra. As a starting point, invaluable records are:

CITIZENSHIP INDEX ON MICROFICHE, SINGLE NUMBER SERIES WITH 'CIT' PREFIX, 1903–
All Offices
The index lists alphabetically all applicants for naturalisation, from 1904 to the present. Entries record surname, first names, alias, address, date of birth, former citizenship, sex, date of arrival in Australia, file number and citizenship number. Because the microfiche contains information less than 30 years old, it can be accessed only through reference staff.
Recorded by: 1973–1974: Department of Immigration, Central Office (CA 51)
NAME INDEX CARDS, NATURALISATION, 1911–56
Canberra
These cards are the control records for naturalisation files. Details include full name, date of birth, file number, arrival date, sometimes vessel's name. Many items pre-date 1911.
Series: A1652
Quantity: 19.5 metres
Recorded by: 1911–1916: Department of External Affairs (I), Melbourne (CA 27); 1916–1928: Department of Home and Territories, Central Office (CA 15); 1928–1932: Department of Home Affairs (II), Central Office (CA 24); 1932–1939: Department of the Interior (I), Central Administration (CA 27); 1939–1945: Department of the Interior (II), Central Office (CA 31); 1945–1956: Department of Immigration, Central Office (CA 51)
AA – Albino, eg Abrahams, Myers, 1902, Abramowicz, Rachel, 1937 A1652, box 1
CORRESPONDENCE FILES, ANNUAL SINGLE NUMBER SERIES, 1903–38
Canberra
Items typically include certificates of naturalisation (including renunciation of former nationality and statutory declarations), application forms (with biographical detail), reports (including police reports) on applicants, sometimes photos.
Series: A1
Quantity: 337.14 metres
Recorded by: 1903–1916: Department of External Affairs (I), Melbourne (CA 7); 1916–1928: Department of Home and Territories, Central Office (CA 15); 1928–1932: Department of Home Affairs (II) (Central Office) (CA 24); 1932–1938: Department of the Interior (I), Central Administration (CA 27)
Jacob Cohen, Naturalisation, 1904 A1, 1904/7550
Hyman Cohen, Naturalisation, 1908–09 A1, 1909/562
Benzion Cohen, Naturalisation, 1909 A1, 1909/4896
Mrs Sarah Cohen, Naturalisation certificate, 1916 A1, 1916/30750
Rev Samuel Nathan Salas – Naturalisation, 1916–18 A1, 1918/4770
Solomon Cohen, Revocation of Naturalisation certificate, 1912–37 A1, 1937/6851
Isaac John Jedwab, Naturalisation, 1925–26 A1, 1925/26127
CORRESPONDENCE FILES, 'A' SERIES, 1910
Canberra
Files in this series contain naturalisation documents and passports.
Series: A63
Quantity: 3.78 metres
Recorded by: 1910–1910: Department of External Affairs (I), Melbourne (CA 7)
Solomon Cohen – Naturalisation, 1910 A63, A1910/1637
Solomon Hyams – Naturalisation, 1910 A63, A1910/6314
Morris Milafsky – Naturalisation, 1910 A63, A1910/4640
Moss Morris Friedman – Naturalisation, 1910–11 A63, A1910/7947
CORRESPONDENCE FILES, CLASS 1 (GENERAL, PASSPORTS), 1939–50
Canberra
Series: A659
Quantity: 101.25 metres
Recorded by: 1939–1939: Department of the Interior (I), Central Administration (CA 27); 1939–1945: Department of the Interior (II), Central Office (CA 31)
Zapolski, Z [aka Zalman Levi] – Naturalisation, 1924–40 A659, 1939/1/11763
Herszkowicz, M B [aka Morris Hirsh] – Naturalisation, 1932–39 A659, 1939/1/10475
Spivakovsky, T [aka Spivak, Nathan] – Naturalisation, 1933–40 A659, 1939/1/11911
Gilovitz, Moses [known as Morris] – Naturalisation, 1930–40 A659, 1939/1/16055
Epstein, D – Naturalisation, 1939–40 A659, 1940/1/560
Levi, J and Others – Revocation of naturalisation certificates, 1942 A659, 1942/1/3404
CORRESPONDENCE FILES, CLASS 4 (NATURALISATION), 1939–50
Canberra
This series contains individual naturalisation files for the period 1944–1950.
Series: A435
Quantity: 111 metres
Recorded by: 1939–1945: Department of the Interior (II), Central Office (CA 31); 1945–1950: Department of Immigration, Central Office (CA 51)
Fritz Max Aronstein – Naturalisation [12 folios], 1945–46 A435, 1945/4/5561
Leo Weiser Port [Rappaport] – Naturalisation, 1944–45 A435, 1944/4/5536
J. Hirsch, 1950–52 A435, 1950/4/8768
Nathan Zygier – Naturalisation, 1942–50 A435, 1950/5/5900
CORRESPONDENCE FILES, MULTIPLE NUMBER SERIES, CLASS 11 (MIGRANTS A–C), 1951–52
Canberra
Series: A439
Quantity: 6.66 metres
Recorded by: 1951–1952: Department of Immigration (CA 51)
Aaron, R, 1952–53 A439, 1952/11/8478
Adler, L, 1945–52 A439, 1952/11/7862
Abrahamsen, P, 1940–52 A439, 1952/11/6848
CORRESPONDENCE FILES, MULTIPLE NUMBER SERIES, CLASS 12 (MIGRANTS D–G), 1951–52
Canberra
Series: A440
Quantity: 8.64 metres
Recorded by: 1951–1952: Department of Immigration, Central Office (CA 51)
Epstein, G, 1949–52 A440, 1952/12/5222
Epstein, Michael, 1949–52 A440, 1952/12/2812
Dallwitz, H, 1952 A440, 1952/12/4939
Finkelstein, I, 1951–54 A440, 1951/12/6770
Feigin, M [0.25cm], 1951–66 A440, 1951/12/1877
CORRESPONDENCE FILES, MULTIPLE NUMBER SERIES, CLASS 13 (MIGRANTS H–K), 1951–52
Canberra
The series consists of naturalisation files, passport applications, and resettlement or deportation recommendations.
Series: A441
Quantity: 9.18 metres
Recorded by: 1952–1953: Department of Immigration, Central Office (CA 51)
Kalman, M, 1951–54 A441, 1951/13/10144
Klein, J, 1949–59 A441, 1951/13/10532
Hirzhorn, B, 1951–54 A441, 1951/13/10567
Kaplan, J, 1949–51 A441, 1951/13/7302
CORRESPONDENCE FILES, MULTIPLE NUMBER SERIES (MIGRANTS L–N), 1951–52
Canberra
Series: A442
Quantity: 8.28 metres
Recorded by: 1951–1952: Department of Immigration (CA 51)
Levy, Manfred, 1950–57 A442, 1951/14/1601
Morgenstern, B, 1951 A442, 1951/14/1607
Lippmann, L., 1952–55 A442, 1952/14/2430
Menasche, L., 1950–53 A442, 1952/14/6655
CORRESPONDENCE FILES, MULTIPLE NUMBER SERIES (MIGRANTS O–S), 1951–52
Canberra
The series consists of naturalisation files, passport applications, resettlement and deportation recommendations and policy documents. Subject matter goes well beyond the alphabetical O–S range.
Series: A443
Quantity: 6.7 metres
Recorded by: 1952–1953: Department of Immigration, Central Office (CA 51)
Rosenthal, A, 1951–54 A443, 1951/15/5833
Hirsch, E H, 1944–51 A443, 1951/15/4507
Ninio, B, 1952–54 A443, 1952/15/244
CORRESPONDENCE FILES, MULTIPLE NUMBER SERIES (MIGRANTS T–Z), 1951–2
Canberra
The series consists of naturalisation files, passport applications, and resettlement or deportation recommendations. Coverage goes well outside the alphabetical T–Z range.
Series: A444
Quantity: 5.25 metres
Recorded by: 1952–1953: Department of Immigration, Central Office (CA 51)
Weiner, M, 1951–53 A444, 1951/16/855
Batagol, I, 1935–50 A444, 1952/16/68
Liberman, Sarah, Mrs, 1951 A444, 1951/16/4250
Zablud, M, 1951–54 A444, 1951/16/4677

A large number of naturalisation files, particularly for the post-1945 period, can be located in:

CORRESPONDENCE FILES, ANNUAL SINGLE NUMBER WITH BLOCK ALLOCATIONS, 1953–
Canberra
Series: A446
Quantity: 3346.40 metres
Recorded by: 1953–1974: Department of Immigration, Central Office (CA 51)
Cohn, Z [Zena] – Naturalisation, 1953–54 A446, 1953/7740
Preger, Moses – Naturalisation, 1955–56 A446, 1955/48482
Gertler, Aaron Joseph – Naturalisation, 1931–68 A446, 1959/21621
Bilenky, W [Wolfe] – Naturalisation A446, 1953/6730
Neustein, D – Naturalisation, 1951–69 A446, 1969/35668
GENERAL CORRESPONDENCE [AND CASE FILES, (1) SINGLE NUMBER SERIES WITH 20–25 INFIX, (2) ANNUAL SINGLE NUMBER SERIES (BLOCK ALLOCATED) WITH 'N' (NEW SOUTH WALES) PREFIX], c1901–67
Sydney
Series: SP1122/1
Quantity: 2375.10 metres
Recorded by: 1951–1967: Department of Immigration, NSW Branch (CA 957)
George Simon (naturalisation file), 1950–66 SP1122/1, N1965/67759
Alfred Irwin Geiger (naturalisation file) [box 5983], 1955–62 SP1122/1, N1963/30389
PERSONAL CASE FILES, ANNUAL SINGLE NUMBER SERIES WITH 'T' (TAS) PREFIX, 1951–
Hobart
Files in this series deal with individual cases of British and alien migration to Tasmania, and include passport correspondence and applications for admission of a friend or relative.
Series: P3
Quantity: 107.71 metres
Recorded by: 1951–1974: Department of Immigration, TAS Branch (CA 960)
Jacobi, Werner, K F Application for naturalisation, case file, 1964–66 P3, 1964/1929
Jacobi, Dieter. Application for naturalisation, case file, 1962–64 P3, 61/1384

In some cases, Commonwealth Investigation Service records may include reports on individual applicants for naturalisation. For example:

CORRESPONDENCE FILES, SINGLE NUMBER SERIES WITH 'V' PREFIX, 1924–62
Melbourne
Series: B741
Quantity: 29.88 metres
Recorded by: 1927–1946: Investigation Branch, Victoria (CA 907)
Nathan Nossell, 1933
This file includes naturalisation declarations plus investigation papers.
B741, V/11713
Harry and Fanny Cohen – Application for naturalisation and admission of friends into Australia, 1928–34 B741, V/4553
Solomon Ravdell, 1931–55
This file contains details on the subject as a victim of a famous kidnapping case, other press clippings, and the naturalisation investigation report.
B741, V/8626
CORRESPONDENCE RE NATURALISATION AND INTERNEES [SINGLE NUMBER SERIES WITH 'N' (NSW) PREFIX], c1914–46
Sydney
Series: ST1233/1
Quantity: 28.62 metres
Recorded by: 1920–1946: Commonwealth Investigation Branch, NSW (CA 904)
Israel Cohen, 1927 ST1233/1, N4762
Morris Nathan, 1926–27 ST1233/1, N4131
CORRESPONDENCE FILES, SINGLE NUMBER SERIES, 1918–59
Perth
Files in this series include policy documents, reports of enquiries into persons and events associated with naturalisation, offences and contravention of Commonwealth law.
Series: PP302/1
Quantity: 23.76 metres
Recorded by: 1919–1946: Immigration Branch, WA (CA 908)
Morris Sasson – including application for naturalisation, 1916–27 PP302/1, WA1135
Simeon Epstein – including application for naturalisation, 1921–25 PP302/1, WA1087
Nathan Segal – including application for naturalisation and Form 40 (Immigration), 1911–29 PP302/1,WA1122

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