United States Statutes at Large/Volume 1/5th Congress/2nd Session/Chapter 66

453499United States Statutes at Large, Volume 1 — Public Acts of the Fifth Congress, Second Session, Chapter LXVIUnited States Congress

July 6, 1798.

Chap. ⅬⅩⅥ.An Act respecting Alien Enemies.[1]

Section 1.In case of war, or actual threatened invasion, the President shall make a proclamation. Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That whenever there shall be a declared war between the United States and any foreign nation or government, or any invasion or predatory incursion shall be perpetrated, attempted, or threatened against the territory of the United States, by any foreign nation or government, and the President of the United States shall make public proclamation of the event,Act of July 6, 1812, ch. 130. all natives, citizens, denizens, or subjects of the hostile nation or government, being males of the age of fourteen years and upwards, who shall be within the United States, and not actually naturalized, shall be liable to be apprehended, restrained, secured and removed, as alien enemies. Alien enemies how to be treated.And the President of the United States shall be, and he is hereby authorized, in any event, as aforesaid, by his proclamation thereof, or other public act, to direct the conduct to be observed, on the part of the United States, towards the aliens who shall become liable, as aforesaid; the manner and degree of the restraint to which they shall be subject, and in what cases, and upon what security their residence shall be permitted,If not chargeable with crimes against the public safety, time shall be allowed for their departure. and to provide for the removal of those, who, not being permitted to reside within the United States, shall refuse or neglect to depart therefrom; and to establish any other regulations which shall be found necessary in the premises and for the public safety: Provided, that aliens resident within the United States, who shall become liable as enemies, in the manner aforesaid, and who shall not be chargeable with actual hostility, or other crime against the public safety, shall be allowed, for the recovery, disposal, and removal of their goods and effects, and for their departure, the full time which is, or shall be stipulated by any treaty, where any shall have been between the United States, and the hostile nation or government, of which they shall be natives, citizens, denizens or subjects: and where no such treaty shall have existed, the President of the United States may ascertain and declare such reasonable time as may be consistent with the public safety, and according to the dictates of humanity and national hospitality.

Sec. 2.All courts of criminal jurisdiction—and also the judges of the courts of the U. States may receive and hear complaints against alien enemies, and make an order thereon. And be it further enacted, That after any proclamation shall be made as aforesaid, it shall be the duty of the several courts of the United States, and of each state, having criminal jurisdiction, and of also the judges the several judges and justices of the courts of the United States, and they shall be, and are hereby respectively, authorized upon complaint, against any alien or alien enemies, as aforesaid, who shall be resident and at large within such jurisdiction or district, to the danger of the public peace or safety, and contrary to the tenor or intent of such proclamation, or other regulations which the President of the United States shall and may establish in the premises, to cause such alien or aliens to be duly apprehended and convened before such court, judge or justice; and after a full examination and hearing on such complaint, and sufficient cause therefor appearing, shall and may order such alien or aliens to be removed out of the territory of the United States, or to give sureties of their good behaviour, or to be otherwise restrained, conformably to the proclamation or regulations which shall and may be established as aforesaid, and may imprison, or otherwise secure such alien or aliens, until the order which shall and may be made, as aforesaid, shall be performed.

Sec. 3.Marshals of the district to provide for their removal, for which he shall have a warrant. And be it further enacted, That it shall be the duty of the marshal of the district in which any alien enemy shall be apprehended, who by the President of the United States, or by order of any court, judge or justice, as aforesaid, shall be required to depart, and to be removed, as aforesaid, to provide therefor, and to execute such order, by himself or his deputy, or other discreet person or persons to be employed by him, by causing a removal of such alien out of the territory of the United States; and for such removal the marshal shall have the warrant of the President of the United States, or of the court, judge or justice ordering the same, as the case may be.

Approved, July 6, 1798.

  1. Alien enemy. The fact that the commander of a private armed vessel was an alien enemy at the time of the capture, does not invalidate such capture. The Mary and Susan, 1 Wheat. 46; 3 Cond. Rep. 480.
    Admitting it to have any operation, all that could result from it would be the condemnation of his interest to the government, as a droit of the admiralty; but his national character can in no case affect the rights of the owners and crew of the privateer. Ibid.
    An alien enemy cannot be permitted to make the declaration required by law, preparatory to the naturalization of aliens. Ex parte Newman, 2 Gallis’ C. C. R. 11.
    An alien enemy cannot sustain a suit in a prize court, nor can a citizen claim the property of an alien enemy in a prize court, upon an alleged sale since the war. The Emulous, 1 Gallis. C. C. R. 563.