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A Would-Be Immigrant is Excluded for Being a Potential "Public Charge"

This memorandum records the recommendations of the Immigration Service Commissioner of the District Office of San Francisco regarding the fate of Samuel Kaplan, a would-be immigrant from Russia. The Commissioner upholds a previous ruling by the immigration board that Kaplan be denied entry to the U.S. on the grounds that his destitution and lack of English language skills make it probable that he would become a "public charge," requiring public assistance. From 1911-1920 over 90,000 potential immigrants were excluded on this basis.

Source | Department of Justice, Immigration and Naturalization Service, San Francisco District Office, "Interrogation of Samuel Kaplan, 'Russian Hebrew,' by federal Immigration Board of Inquiry, 09/30/1915," from National Archives,
Creator | Department of Justice
Item Type | Government Document
Cite This document | Department of Justice, “A Would-Be Immigrant is Excluded for Being a Potential "Public Charge",” SHEC: Resources for Teachers, accessed October 2, 2023,

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