Evolution of the national citizenry

  • Naturalization Act of 1790

    This act was the first law that actually defined what was and was not eligible for citizenship by naturalization. It was limited to white people only.
  • Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo

    This ended the war between Mexican and America; it also gave Mexican citizens the chance to choose Mexican or U.S. citizenship.
  • The 14th Amendment

    The 14th Amendment gave citizenship to all those born/naturalized in the U.S. Including former slaves. And granted all citizens equal protection.
  • 15th Amendment

    Granted African American men the right to vote.
  • Naturalization Act of 1870

    This act restricted “any alien, being a free white person” from citizenship. If they were in the U.S. for 2 years. It left out “indentured servants, slaves, and most women”.
  • Chinese Exclusion Act

    This act was put in place to stop the number of Chinese immigrants coming to the United States. It suspended their immigration for 10 years and declared them ineligible for naturalization.
  • Naturalization Act of 1906

    This act limited the racial eligibility for citizenship and required new people to learn English if they wanted to be naturalized.
  • Immigration Act of 1924

    This act limited the number of immigrants allowed in the U.S. through a national origins quota. Said quota allowed immigration visas to go to 2% of the total number of each nationality as of the 1890 census.