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* Finding a date of arrival with a passport application

Passport applications can be excellent sources of genealogical information. The information that passport applications contain varies, but can include an individual's name, age, personal description, date and court of naturalization, place of birth, and date and port of arrival into the United States, as well as the name of the ship.

Passport applications from 1791 to 1925 are available through the National Archives. However, applications less than 75 years old may have viewing restrictions. The National Archives has indexes for many applications from 1834-1923. For information about contacting the National Archives, see the topic The National Archives and regional centers.

The National Archives will search their records for you if you have the required information. To send for a request form, write to:

The National Archives
Civil Reference Branch
Washington, D.C., 20408

You may be able to access post-1925 passport applications through the Research and Liaison Branch of the Department of State Passport Office. Simply write a letter to the address below, and include the name, birth date, and birthplace, and the type of information that you are looking for. If the individual is deceased, you must include their death date and a copy of their death certificate.

Department of State
Passport Office
Research and Liaison Branch, Room 316
1425 K Street N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20522-1705

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