Sunday, October 11, 2015
June 28, July 4, 1940: Confusion from the INS
Letter from Salisbury of INS to Opa
U.S. Department of Labor
Immigration and Naturalization Service
June 28, 1940
Mr. Thomas Doeppner,
Receipt is acknowledged of your letter of June 5, 1940 in connection with your desire for an extension of time of your temporary admission to the United States.
Enclosed is form of application for extension of time of temporary stay, which you may execute in duplicate, have sworn to before a person authorized to administer oaths, and forward to the Immigration and Naturalization Service at the port of your arrival in the United States for appropriate action.
The renewal of your immigration visa should be taken up with the American Consul nearest your place of residence, the issuance of visas being a function of the consuls, who act under instructions from the Department of State.
Very truly yours,
By direction of the Commissioner,
E.E. Salisbury, Assistant.
Letter from Opa to Kathleen Hanstein of American Friends Service Committee
Thomas Doeppner McPherson, July 4, 1940
Mrs. Kathleen H. Hanstein
American Friends Service Committee
Dear Mrs. Hanstein,
Today I received the enclosed letter from the U.S. Department of Justice, and an application blanc to extend time of temporary stay. I filled it out as asked and sent it to New York. I do not understand the last paragraph of the commissioner's letter in which he writes about "renewal of my immigration visa." Does that refer to my application for a student visa? If so, which consul should I write to, since there is no mail communication with Holland?
I would like you very much to answer these questions. I am having a harvest job ow close to McPherson, as wheat scooper, and after harvest time I am able to work in the college library. I enjoy the work very much and am looking forward to my next year at McPherson College.
Poor Opa. He is learning that the US government has its flaws in communication. For all the trouble he went through to have his paperwork just perfect and to get the important student visa- he has a temporary visitor's visa and the government doesn't really seem to care what he does with it. He is trying to upgrade his visa to a student's visa (what it should have been in the first place) and trying to make sure he doesn't get deported... and the INS has sent him two equally non-helpful letters. This one at least gives him a means to get some sort of legal extension for his stay in the United States, but it's as if the INS didn't even reference his case or questions in this response.
Opa forwards his confusion to Mrs. Hanstein at the AFSC and hopes she can help him. I imagine he would like to blow the whole thing off as the INS has seemed to do his immigration question- but then he would have every right to fear that his negligence would cost him his entrance. I think in the back of his mind, Opa is hoping to graduate quickly from McPherson so that he can provide a valuable affidavit for his mother, even if things seem pretty hopeless right now. You never know when a door might open. So Opa has to play by the rules as much as he can. It's too bad the INS doesn't really seem to care to tell him how.