World War I News, 1917-1919
from the Denison Review
General Articles About the Times and Events
War Declaration by Pres. Woodrow Wilson
Wednesday, April 11, 1917
THE DENISON REVIEW
Wednesday, April 11, 1917
PRESIDENT PROCLAIMS STATE OF WAR EXISTS
Between United States and Imperial German Governments
Whereas, the congress of the United States in the exercise of the constitutional authority vested in them have resolved by joint resolution of the senate and house of representa- tives bearing date this day, That a state of war between the United States and the imperial German government which ha been thrust upon the Unit- ed States I hereby formally declared: Whereas, it is provided by Section 4067 of the revised Statues that
Whenever there is declared a war between the United States and any foreign nation or government, or any invasion or predatory incursion is perpetrated, attempted or threatened against the territory of the United States by an foreign nation or government and the president makes public proclamation of the event, all natives, citizens, denizens or subjects of a hostile nation or government being male of the age of 14 years and upwards who shall be within the United States and not naturalized shall be liable to be apprehended, restrained, secured and removed as alien enemies.
CONDUCT OF ALIENS
The president is authorized in any such event by his proclamation thereof or other pubic acts, to direct the conduct to be observed on the part of the United States toward the aliens who become so liable; 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 and to provide for the removal of those who not being permitted to reside within the United States, refuse or neglect to depart there from; and to establish any such regulations which are found necessary in the premises and for public safety: Whereas, by sections 4068, 4069 and 4070 of the revised statutes, further provision is made relative to alien enemies:
PROCLAIMS STATE OF WAR
Now, therefore, I, Woodrow Wilson, president of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim to all whom it may concern, that a state of war exists between the United States and the imperial German government, and I do specially direct all officers, civil or military, of the United States, that they exercise vigilance and zeal in the discharge of the duties incident to such a state of war and I do, moreover, earnestly appeal to all American citizens that they in loyal devotion to their country dedicated from its foundation to the principles of liberty and justice, uphold the laws of the land and give undivided and willing support to those measures which may be adopted by the constitutional authorities in prosecuting the war to a successful issue and in obtaining a secure and just peace:
And acting under and by virtue of the authority vested in me by the constitution of the United States and the said sections of the revised states:
ALIENS MUST BEHAVE
I DO, HEREBY, FURTHER PROCLAIM AND DIRECT THAT THE CONDUCT TO BE OBSERVED ON THE PART OF THE United States towards all natives, citizens, denizens or subjects of Germany, being male of the age of 14 years and upwards, who shall be within the United States and not actually naturalized, who for the purpose of this proclamation and under such sections of the revised statutes are termed alien enemies shall be as follows:
All alien enemies are enjoined to preserve the peace towards the United States, and to refrain from crime against the pubic safety and from violating the laws of the United States and of the states and territories thereof and to refrain from actual hostilities or giving information, aid or comfort to the enemies of the United States and to comply strictly with the regulations which are hereby or which may be from time to time promulgated by the president and so long as they shall conduct themselves in accordance with law they shall be undisturbed in the peaceful pursuit of their lives and occupations and be accorded the consideration due to all peaceful and law abiding persons except so far as restrictions may be necessary for their own protection and for the safety of the United States and towards such alien enemies as conduct themselves in accordance with law, all citizens of the treat them with all such friendliness as may be compatible with loyalty and allegiance to the United States.
And all alien citizens who fail to conduct themselves as so enjoined in addition to all other penalties prescribed by law, shall be liable to restrain or to give security or to depart from the United States in the manner prescribed by sections 4069 and 4070 of the revised statutes and as prescribed in the regulations duly promulgated by the president.
And pursuant to the authority vested in me, I hereby declare and establish the following regulations which I find necessary in the premises and for the public safety:
(1) - An alien enemy shall not have in his possession at any time or place any firearms, weapons or implements of war or component parts thereof, ammunition, maxim or other silencer, arms or explosives or material used in the manufacture of explosives.
(2) - An alien enemy shall not have in his possession at any time or place or use or operate any aircraft or wireless apparatus or any form of signaling device or any form of cipher code or any paper, document or book, written or printed in cipher or in which there may be invisible writing.
PROPERTY MAY BE SEIZED
(3) - All property found in the possession of an alien enemy in violation of the foregoing regulations shall be subject to seizure by the United States.
(4) - An alien enemy shall not approach or be found within one-half of a mile of any federal or state fort, camp, arsenal, aircraft station, government or naval vessel, navy yard, factory or workshop for the manufacture of munitions of war or of any products for the use of the army or navy.
(5) - An alien enemy shall not write, print or publish any attack or threat against the government or congress of the United States or either branch thereof, or against the measures or policy of the United States or against the persons or property of any person in the military, naval or civil service of the United States or of the states or territories or of the District of Columbia or of the municipal governments therein.
(6) - An Alien enemy shall not commit or abet any hostile acts against the United States or give information, aid or comfort to its enemies.
AS TO PROHIBITED AREAS
(7) - Any alien enemy shall not reside in or continue to reside in, to remain in or enter any locality which the president may from time to time designate by an executive order as a prohibitive area in which residence by an alien enemy shall be found by him to constitute a danger to the public peace and safety of the United States except by permit from the president and except under such limitations or restrictions as the president may prescribe.
(8) - An lien enemy whom the president shall have reasonable cause to believe to be aiding or about to aid the enemy or to be at large to the danger of the pubic peace or safety of the United States or to have violated or to be about to violate any of these regulations, shall remove to any location designated by the president by executive order and shall not remove there from without permit, or shall depart from the United States if so required by the president;
(9) - No alien enemy shall depart from the United States until he shall have received such permit as the president shall prescribe or except under order of a court, judge or justice, under sections 4069 and 4070 of the revised statutes.
LANDING IS RESTRICTED
(10) - No alien enemy shall land in or enter the United States except under such restrictions and at such places as the president may prescribe:
(11) - If necessary to prevent violation of the regulations all alien enemies will be obliged to register:
(12) - An alien enemy whom there may be reasonable cause to believe to be aiding or about to aid the enemy, or who be at large to the danger of the public peace or safety or who violates or attempts to violate or of whom there is reasonable grounds to believe that he is about to violate any regulation to be promulgated by the president or any criminal law of the United States or of the states or territories thereof, will be subject to summary arrest by the United States marshal or his deputy or such other offices as the president shall designate and confinement be such penitentiary, prison, mail, military camp or other place of detention as may be directed by the president.
APPLIES TO LAND AND WATER
This proclamation and the regulations herein contained shall extend and apply to all land and water, continental or insular, in any way within the jurisdiction of the United States.
Transcribed by Melba McDowell