As part of a nationwide event, 50 people originally from 28 countries took the oath of allegiance to the United States and became citizens Tuesday. The ceremony was at the Harry S. Truman Library and Museum and took place on Constitution Day.
In 1952, President Truman signed a bill formalizing the celebration of Citizenship Day, and in 2004 Congress established Sept. 17 as Constitution Day and Citizenship Day. U.S. District Judge Ortrie D. Smith presided at the ceremony, and the William Chrisman High School Blue and Gold Singers provided the music. Independence Mayor Pro Tem Jim Schultz congratulated the candidates after the oath.
Countries of origin for the new citizens are Bangladesh, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Burma, Canada, China, Colombia, Cote D’Ivorie, Cuba, Egypt, El Salvador, Germany, Honduras, Hong Kong, India, Iraq, Jamaica, Jordan, Mexico, Nigeria, Peru, Philippines, South Africa, Sudan, Taiwan, Togo, Uganda, Vietnam and Yugoslavia.
Nationwide, more than 18,000 new citizens are taking the oath in ceremonies this week, according to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.
Following the ceremony, the Independence Pioneers Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution held a reception for the new citizens and their families, and election officials were on hand to help with voter registration for the new citizens.
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