Thomas Jefferson wrote to Hugh White about the rights of immigrants, according to the Heritage Foundation. Jefferson wrote that as long as immigrants followed established rules, which legislative bodies ought to apply equally, they had the right to join in society.Continue Reading
Three years before Jefferson's 1801 letter to White, James Madison wrote to Jefferson in opposition to the alien and sedition acts that John Adams had proposed to allow the government to deport or imprison aliens who spoke or wrote against the government, according to Montpelier Magazine. Madison's 1798 letter stated that the Alien bill proposed in the Senate was "a monster that must forever disgrace its parents."
George Washington wrote a letter to Francis Adrian Vanderkamp dated May 28, 1788 that stated in part his hope that the United State would be a safe and agreeable asylum to persecuted people regardless of whatever nation they might belong to, according to TeachingAmericanHistory.org. In 1785, Washington wrote to David Humphreys and said he wanted the "the poor, the needy, & oppressed of the Earth; and those who want Land" to be able to go to the Western part of the country, which he called the "second Land of promise," according to Founders Online.Learn more about Immigration