DOINews: NPS-Fort Union National Monument: Park Hosts Naturalization Ceremony

Last edited 09/05/2019

photo1Fort Union National Monument hosts a naturalization ceremony at its visitor center on Friday, May 9, 2014. Here 13 new U.S citizens pose with the 3rd New Mexico Volunteers living history unit and the park superintendent in front of the hospital building. Photo by NPS.

Thirteen candidates took the oath of citizenship and were presented certificates by the Citizenship and Immigration Services. They came from 11 countries – Argentina, Australia, Cameroon, Columbia, El Salvador, France, India, Mexico, Nigeria, Turkey, and the United Kingdom.

Superintendent Charlie Strickfaden and Immigration Services Officer Peter Rechkemmer made brief remarks during the ceremony.

“During the Civil War, volunteering in the Union Army was one path to citizenship,” said Strickfaden. “By bearing arms for the Union, African Americans and Irish Americans exhibited their loyalty to the U.S. and their capacity to act as citizens, and strengthened their American identity in the process. Members of both groups served at Fort Union. We welcome these new citizens today to their national park system, and to the stories of diversity told at Fort Union.”

The ceremony coincided with the park's annual “Camp of Instruction” living history drill and education days of its 3rd New Mexico Volunteers living history unit, which stayed after the ceremony for photos with the new citizens and their families.

To learn more about Fort Union National Monument, go to the park's website or on the park's Facebook site at

By: Fort Union National Monument, NPS

May 19, 2014

This National Park Service story appears in the May 19, 2014, edition of InsideNPS.

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