Donald Trump’s Mother Mary Anne Macleod An Illegal Immigrant-Mostly Fiction!
Summary of eRumor:
Claims that President Donald Trump’s mother Mary Anne Macleod was an illegal immigrant from Scotland have followed Trump’s controversial statements and executive action on immigration.
Mary Anne Macleod was a Scottish immigrant, and certain aspects of her origin story don’t jive with archived records, but there’s no indication that Mary Anne Macleod was an illegal immigrant.
Rumors that Mary Anne Macleod was an illegal immigrant gained momentum in of a controversial executive order restricting immigration that was signed by President Trump on January 27, 2017. The executive order, and Trump’s hardline stance on immigration in general, fueled criticism that the president was being hypocritical because his own mother, Mary Anne Macleod, was a Scotch immigrant.
Mary Anne Macleod was indeed an immigrant, but rumors that she was an illegal immigrant appear to be false. Still, Donald Trump has said that his mother met and fell in love with father, Fred Trump, while she was vacationing in the United States — and that she didn’t intend on staying there. Records show that’s not true, either.
Questions about Mary Anne Macleod’s journey to the States persisted throughout the presidential campaign. One of the most insightful accounts came from the Scottish newspaper The National, which reported that the “holiday account” of Macleod’s immigration to the U.S. has always been viewed with skepticism in her home town of Tong, on the Isle of Lewis:
Lewis in 1930 had a shortage of jobs and eligible men — per head of population, the Western Isles had more men killed in the First World War than anywhere else in Britain. The National today publishes the truth that MaryAnne (that is how she signed herself on at least one official form) Macleod immigrated legally and permanently to the USA on May 11, 1930, and that she had no intention of returning to Scotland anytime soon after that — she was most definitely not “on holiday.”
She also declared as soon as she set food in the USA on that date, just one day after her 18th birthday, that she wanted to become an American citizen, and would be staying permanently in the USA.
Furthermore, The National has discovered proof that, for whatever reason, Fred and Mary Anne Trump played fast and loose with the American authorities on their census return in 1940, stating that Mary Anne Trump was a naturalized citizen when records openly available to researchers show she was not naturalized until 1942. The key documentary evidence is the passenger list for the SS Transylvania of the Anchor Line which transported Mary Anne Macleod to her new life in the USA.
From there, Fusion tracked down Mary Anne Macleod’s immigration records, held by the Liberty Ellis Foundation, which operates the Ellis Island museum. The records confirmed much of what The National had reported: that Macleod arrived on May 11, 1930, was unmarried, had never been in the U.S. before, had about $50 in her pocket and declared her intentions to stay in America permanently.
Those records also indicate that Macleod told authorities she planned to stay with her brother in Astoria (The National reported that she planned to stay with her sister in Long Island, but it’s possible her plans had changed):
Marry Anne Macleod and Fred Trump wed in 1936. In the 1940 U.S. Census, Mary Anne and Fred Trump appeared to list Mary Anne’s status as a naturalized U.S. citizen, she wouldn’t actually be naturalized for another two years. It’s not clear why they did that, or what benefit it may have had, but it’s fueled claims that Mary Anne Macleod was an illegal immigrant, which isn’t accurate:
On March 10, 1942, Mary Anne Macleod (now Mary Anne Trump) became a naturalized U.S. citizen, giving her permanent legal status:
In the end, claims that Mary Anne Macleod was an illegal are false. Also false is the claim that Mary Anne Macleod came to United States on vacation and only stayed after she met and fell in love with Fred trump.