Smith Act – Alien Registration Act 1940

Book chapter

Megele, C. 2011. Smith Act – Alien Registration Act 1940. in: Arnold, K. (ed.) Anti-Immigration in the United States Greenwood.
Chapter titleSmith Act – Alien Registration Act 1940
AuthorsMegele, C.

Alien Registration Act of 1940 was principally an anti-sedition enactment passed by the Congress in June, 1940 and signed into law by President Franklin D. Roosevelt. This Act is commonly referred to as the Smith Act, named after Howard D. Smith, the author of its’ anti-sedition section, and is similar to the New York Criminal Anarchy Act of 1902, sustained in 1925 in Gitlow v. New York. The Smith Act made it a criminal offence for any person or organization to advocate the forcible or violent overthrow of the United States Government. It also required registration of personal and professional details as well as political affiliations and fingerprinting of all alien residents of United States above to age of 14. Within four months from the passage of Smith Act, about 4,741,971 aliens were registered.
This article discusses the effects, implementation, application and subsequent modifications of this Act.

Book titleAnti-Immigration in the United States
EditorsArnold, K.
Publication dates
Print23 Sep 2011
Publication process dates
Deposited01 Jun 2015
Output statusPublished
Web address (URL)
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