June 30, 2022

Benjamin Harrison Presidential Site will host naturalization ceremony

Around 80 people will become American citizens at Indiana's only Presidential Site.

Around 80 people will become American citizens at Indiana's only Presidential Site.

Around 80 people will become American citizens at Indiana's only Presidential Site.

Judge Sarah Evans Barker will preside over the naturalization ceremony at the Benjamin Harrison Presidential Site in Indianapolis at 10 a.m. Friday.

“It’s such a moving ceremony and to see the happiness in everyone’s face and the pride they have, it’s just a beautiful, beautiful ceremony,” special events and marketing manager  Whitney Ball said.

Singer Sylvia McNair will perform with pianist Michael Huber, and Benjamin Harrison's great-great-grandson, Kimball Harrison Morsman, will provide remarks. 

The Benjamin Harrison Presidential Site will also honor Barker, a senior judge of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana, with the naming of its new Citizenship Plaza. She has presided over the July naturalization ceremony at the Presidential Site since 2003.

“All of that is being unveiled slowly, but surely this June and July with several different events we have,” Ball said.

The dedication of the Sarah Evans Barker Citizenship Plaza will occur after the naturalization ceremony.

The plaza is part of the Old Glory, New Vision transformation of the Presidential Site. It includes: the Book of History, honoring the more than 1,500 new citizens who she's naturalized on the grounds of the museum since 2003; Charters of Freedom, three Indiana limestone outdoor cases displaying the Declaration of Independence, the U.S. Constitution, and Bill of Rights; and the Centennial Flagpole, an 89-foot tall flagpole celebrating the 23rd president's call for the Pledge of Allegiance to be used in schools, and the American flag to be flown in front of schools and public buildings.

Contact WFYI Morning Edition newscaster and reporter Taylor Bennett at tbennett@wfyi.org. Follow on Twitter: @TaylorB2213.

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