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MRS. ETHEL BARRINGTON MACDONALD

JULY 13, 1949.—Committed to the Committee of the Whole House and ordered

to be printed

Mr. FELLOWS, from the Committee on the Judiciary, submitted the

following

REPORT

(To accompany H. R. 1033)

The Committee on the Judiciary, to whom was referred the bill (H. R. 1033) for the relief of Mrs. Ethel Barrington MacDonald, having considered the same, report favorably thereon without amendment and recommend that the bill do pass.

PURPOSE OF THE BILL

The purpose of the bill is to restore American citizenship to a 65-year-old former citizen of the United States who lost her citizenship by residing abroad for over 5 years.

GENERAL INFORMATION

The pertinent facts in this case are set forth in a letter to the chairman of the Committee on the Judiciary, dated June 20, 1949, from the Assistant to the Attorney General, which letter reads as follows:

JUNE 20, 1949. Hon. EMANUEL CELLER, Chairman, Committee on the Judiciary,

House of Representatives, Washington, D. C. MY DEAR MR. CHAIRMAN: This is in response to your request for the views of the Department of Justice with respect to the bill (H. R. 1033) for the relief of Mrs. Ethel Barrington MacDonald.

The bill would provide that Mrs. Ethel Barrington MacDonald who lost her United States citizenship by residing at Bogota, Colombia, since 1929, may be naturalized by taking, prior to 1 year from the enactment of the bill, before any naturalization court specified in subsection (a) of section 301 of the Nationality Act of 1940, as amended, or before any diplomatic or consular officer of the United States abroad, the oaths prescribed by section 335 of that act. The bill would also provide that after her naturalization under the provisions of the bill Mrs. MacDonald shall have the same citizenship status as that which existed immediately prior to its loss.

The records of the Immigration and Naturalization Service of this Department disclose that Mrs. MacDonald, who was born in Canada in 1887, acquired United States citizenship through the naturalization of her father during her minority. she being a permanent resident of this country at that time. She married Duncan MacDonald, a subject of Great Britain, in Panama in 1929, and went with him to Bogota, Colombia, where he owned a business Since that time she made one visit to the United States in 1934 for a period of 6 months. In 1948, when applying to the American consul for a United States passport to return to this country, she was informed that she had lost her nationality under section 404 (c) of the Nationality Act of 1940, as amended, which provides that a person who has become a national by naturalization shall lose his nationality by residing continuously for 5 years in any foreign state, except as provided in section 406 of that act. Mrs. Mac Donald did not qualify for exemptions under section 106 A certificate of loss of nationality of the United States was issued by Thomas R. Favell, vice consul of the United States at Bogota, Colombia, showing that Mrs. MacDonald is no longer a citizen of the United States. At present she is in this country, having arrived at New York on April 6, 1949. where she was admitted for a period of 6 months to visit her mother

There are many cases similar to this one in which former nationals of the United States have lost their citizenship under the provi-ions of the Nationality Act of 1940 and are desirous of regaining such citizenship. It would seem that the problem of granting relief in these cases is a general one and if it is to be resolved it should be done by general legislation. The record fails to disclose sufficient reason to justify granting a preference to the alien here involved. Accordingly, this Department is unable to recommend enactment of the bill. Yours sincerely,

PEYTON FORD,

The Assistant to the Atlorney General. Mr. D'Ewart, the author of the bill, appeared before a subcommittee of the Committee on the Judiciary and urged the enactment of his measure, stating as follows:

This is a bill to restore the United States citizenship of Mrs. Ethel Barrington MacDonald, lost because of the provision of law which provides that a naturalized citizen may not stay abroad for more than 5 years.

The unfavorable report of the Justice Department states that the record fails to disclose sufficient reason to grant special preference to this lady. I feel that there are ample reasons for extending special consideration in her case.

Mrs. MacDonald's parents were pioneer homesteaders 70 years ago in North Dakota. When their first child was lost because of lack of proper attention at his birth, they determined that their second child should be born at their former home in Canada where there were adequate medical facilities as well as relatives and friends who could help. There were no medical facilities in the Dakota prairie. Accordingly, the mother went to Canada when the child was expected and this child, Mrs. MacDonald, was born in that country. Mother and child returned to the Dakota homestead as soon as they were able to travel. Subsequently both parents were naturalized and Mrs. MacDonald acquired United States citizenship when an infant because of this fact. Except for the lack of medical facilities in the Dakota, she would have been a natural-born citizen of the United States. Because her Canadian birth was only a minor incident and she was never really a resident of that country, she has always felt herself to be an American.

Mrs. MacDonald's mother is one of the pioneer North Dakota women whose names are engraved on the North Dakota State Capitol, and Mrs. MacDonald herself was a pioneer homesteader in northern Montana where she still owns and pays taxes on her homestead. She is visiting her mother there at this time.

While visiting in the Canal Zone in 1929, Mrs. MacDonald met and married a British subject who was in business in Colombia. She went to that country with him, returning to visit in the United States in 1934, and then going back again to Colombia. In 1939, because of her husband's advanced age, Mrs. MacDonald became an active partner in his firm. Their plans for visits to this country were postponed in following years because of the war. Mrs. MacDonald would have returned in late 1945 but her firm became engaged in a criminal action against an employee who defrauded it and her continued presence in the country was required by this case in the Colombian courts. When the case was settled and Mrs. MacDonald prepared to leave the country, she found that she had lost her citizenship because she had stayed in Colombia longer than the 5-year period permitted naturalized citizens by the Nationality Act of 1940.

Mrs. MacDonald believed, upon investigation of this act, that she should have been exempt under section 406 (b) pertaining to citizens occupied in business abroad. This was denied by the State Department

I believe that, if she is refused the exemption of section 406, she is entitled to other special consideration. I do not feel that Mrs. MacDonald is the naturalized citizen the Congress had in mind when the Nationality Act was framed. Certainly the circumstances of her birth, as I have explained them to you, should not cost this good American her citizenship. Mrs. MacDonald is 65 years old and her husband is 85. They have liquidated their business in Colombia and, as they had always planned, want to retire to her former home in Montana where her mother has always lived, in the daughter's absence. I hope the committee will decide to rectify this accidental injustice to a good American citizen and a pioneer of my State

After consideration of all the facts in this case, the committee is of the opinion that the bill, H. R. 1033, should be enacted and it accordingly recommends that the bill do pass.

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DR. LEON L. KONCHEGUL

JULY 13, 1949.—Committed to the Committee of the Whole House and ordered

to be printed

Mr. CHELF, from the Committee on the Judiciary, submitted the

following

REPORT

(To accompany H. R. 2928

The Committee on the Judiciary to whom was referred the bill (H. R. 2928) for the relief of Dr. Leon L. Konchegul, having considered the same, report favorably thereon without amendment and recommend that the bill do pass.

PURPOSE OF THE BILL

The purpose of the bill is to grant permanent residence in the United States to a 36-year-old native and citizen of Turkey, a physician.

GENERAL INFORMATION

The pertinent facts in this case are set forth in a letter from the Assistant to the Attorney General, dated June 22, 1949, to the chairman of the Committee on the Judiciary, which letter reads as follows:

JUNE 22, 1949.
Hon. EMANUEL CELLER,
Chairman, Committee on the Judiciary,

House of Representatives, Washington, D.C.
MY DEAR MR. CHAIRMAN: This is in response to your request for the views
of the Department of Justice relative to the bill (H. R. 2928) for the relief of
Dr. Leon L. Konchegul.

The bill would provide that in the administration of the immigration laws
Dr. Leon L. Konchegul, of Washington, D. C., who was admitted into the United
States on a student's visa, shall be considered to have been lawfully admitted for
permanent residence as of the date of his actual entry, upon the payment of the
required visa fee and head tax. It would also direct the Secretary of State to
instruct the quota-control officer to deduct one number from the first available
nonpreference quota for nationals of Turkey.

The records of the Immigration and Naturalization Service of this Department disclose that the beneficiary of this bill was born in Istanbul, Turkey, on August 27, 1913, and that be is an unmarried citizen of that country. He was admitted

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