Georgia Immigration

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This entry was originally written by the Johni Cerny and Robert S. Davis for Red Book: American State, County, and Town Sources.

This article is part of
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the Georgia Family History Research series.
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Savannah, Georgia, served as one of the nation’s southern immigration ports. Passenger lists of immigrants arriving at Savannah are available (however, they are sketchy during early years) on federal microfilm M575, Passengers Arriving at Miscellaneous Ports on the Atlantic and Gulf Coasts, at the National Archives and the FHL.

British merchant claims, published over many years in Virginia Genealogist and The North Carolina Genealogical Society Journal, respectively, document the migration of thousands of families to Georgia before 1810. Georgia governors issued passports of good character for families passing through the Indian lands for the West prior to 1820. These passports are abstracted in Dorothy Williams Potter, Passports of Southeastern Pioneers, 1770–1823 (Baltimore: Gateway Press, 1982). See also Marion R. Hemperley, “Savannah Federal Naturalization Oaths, 1790–1860,” Georgia Historical Quarterly 51 (1967): 454-87; and Linda Woodward Geiger and Meyer L. Frankel, Index to Georgia’s Federal Naturalization Records to 1950, Excluding Military Petitions (Atlanta: Georgia Genealogical Society, 1996).