President Theodore Roosevelt sent sixteen battleships known as the “Great White Fleet” to Japan to show the might of the United States. After the Treaty of Portsmouth in 1906 that ended the Russo-Japanese War, tensions between America and Japan arose. America segregated Japanese schools and Japan became furious. In order to pacify Japan, Roosevelt ordered the Great White Fleet to sail across the world to Japan. Roosevelt’s intent was to try to intimidate the country of Japan into keeping good trade relations with the United States. The show of power was successful.
An Act in Reference to the Expatriation of Citizens and their Protection Abroad [March 2, 1907]
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That the Secretary of State shall be authorized, in his discretion, to issue passports to persons not citizens of the United States as follows: Where any person has made a declaration of intention to become such a citizen as provided by law and has resided in the United States for three years a passport may be issued to him entitling him to the protection of the Government in any foreign country: Provided, That such passport shall not be valid for more than six months and shall not be renewed, and that such passport shall not entitle the holder to the protection of this Government in the country of which he was a citizen prior to making such declaration of intention.
SEC. 2. That any American citizen shall be deemed to have expatriated himself when he has been naturalized in any foreign state in conformity with its laws, or when he has taken an oath of allegiance to any foreign state.
When any naturalized citizen shall have resided for two years in the foreign state from which he came, or for five years in any other foreign state it shall be presumed that he has ceased to be an American citizen, and the place of his general abode shall be deemed his place of residence during said years: Provided, however, That such presumption may be overcome on the presentation of satisfactory evidence to a diplomatic or consular officer of the United States, under such rules and regulations as the Department of State may prescribe: And provided also, That no American citizen shall be allowed to expatriate himself when this country is at war.
SEC. 3. That any American woman who marries a foreigner shall take the nationality of her husband. At the termination of the marital relation she may resume her American citizenship, if abroad, by registering as an American citizen within one year with a consul of the United States, or by returning to reside in the United States, or, if residing in the United States at the termination of the marital relation, by continuing to reside therein
SEC. 4. That any foreign woman who acquires American citizenship by marriage to an American shall be assumed to retain the same after the termination of the marital relation if she continue to reside in the United States, unless she makes formal renunciation thereof before a court having jurisdiction to naturalize aliens, or if she resides abroad she may retain her citizenship by registering as such before a United States consul within one year after the termination of such marital relation.
SEC. 5. That a child born without the United States of alien parents shall be deemed a citizen of the United States by virtue of the naturalization of or resumption of American citizenship by the parent: Provided, That such naturalization or resumption takes place during the minority of such child: And provided further that the citizenship of such minor child shall begin at the time such minor child begins to reside permanently in the United States.
SEC. 6. That all children born outside the limits of the United States who are citizens thereof in accordance with the provisions of section nineteen hundred and ninety-three of the Revised Statutes of the United States and who continue to reside outside the United States shall, in order to receive the protection of this Government be required upon reaching the age of eighteen years to record at an American consulate their intention to become residents and remain citizens of the United States and shall be further required to take the oath of allegiance to the United States upon attaining their majority.
SEC. 7. That duplicates of any evidence, registration, or other acts required by this Act shall be filed with the Department of State for record.
Approved, March 2, 1907.
Expatriation Act of 1907 wanted to prevent increases of immigration and the assimilation of immigrants into white American society. The Act prevented immigrants from assimilating into society and took away the rights of women. If an American citizen left to live in another country and was naturalized there, he or she will loose the American citizenship. Any American woman that marries a non-American citizen also loses her citizenship. If an American women goes to even live abroad, she must register with a United States consul in order to keep her citizenship. On the other hand, the Act made it easier for immigrant children to gain a citizenship; But they must wait until age eighteen before registering for citizenship.
Picture Brides of Japanese American Workers Traveling to America
The 1807 Gentlemen's Agreement was an informal agreement between Japan and the United States. America would not impose any Japanese immigration restriction laws and desegregate Japanese American schools, and Japan would have to stop allowing further emigration into the United States. Although the Gentlemen's Agreement prohibited the immigration of male Japanese laborers into the United States, it allowed the wives and children of preset Japanese American immigrants to migrate.
Many Japanese American men who could not find wives, began using mail-in order bride system known as the Picture Brides. Using photographs and biographies, matchmakers in America would help Japanese American men find wives from Japan. Those wives would then travel across the Pacific to America where they would meet their new husbands and marry.