Born in the U.S.A.

1/3/1896

Initially denied reentry to the United States upon his return from an 1894 visit to China, San Francisco-born Wong Kim Ark was determined to be “a citizen of the United States within the meaning of the citizenship clause of the 14th Amendment” by the U.S. District Court in San Francisco. On March 28, 1898, the Supreme Court upheld the District Court opinion and ruled “a child born in the United States to foreign parents who are subject to U.S. jurisdiction automatically becomes a citizen.” The ruling established that except in special circumstances, all children born in the U.S. are U.S. citizens.

National Archives Pacific Region (San Bruno), Records of District Courts of the United States


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