Last updated on: 1/30/2017 | Author:

1637 – Massachusetts Requires Permission to Host Aliens

In May of 1637, the General Court of Massachusetts
ordered that no town or person in the colony should receive or host any
alien without permission from the authorities. John Winthrop, Governor
of the Massachusetts Bay Colony, defended the 1637 court order as

“If we heere be a corporation established by
free consent, if the place of our cohabitation be our owne, then no man
hath a right to come into us without our consent… If we are bound to
keep off whatsoever appears to tend to our ruine or damage, then may we
lawfully refuse to receive such whose dispositions suite not with ours
and whose society (we know) will be hurtful to us.”