Cape Verdean Genealogy

View of Chao de Souza and Thome Barraz, Brava.
This picture was taken during one of the many
droughts in Cape Verde.

I have been interested in my family history since as long as I can remember. I was that pesky kid constantly asking questions of anyone who would answer me. Countless hours were spent listening to my grandmother and great grandmother talking about the “old country”. I heard about the festas in Cova Rodella, family from Pabason, neighbors in Pedra Mollar and Tome Barraz and about trips to Feijão d’Agua.

I had a picture in my mind of what these places looked like but nothing could prepare me for the real thing. My first trip to CV was in November 2009 with my mother and two children. It was so surreal to actually walk on the same ground that my ancestors walked. I felt like I was truly home.

Of course, I visited the “Registo Civil” or civil registry where most of the baptismal, marriage and obituary records are kept. I started with my grandparent’s baptismal records and went from there. I also visited the national archives in the capital of Cape Verde, Praia. Records prior to 1914 are kept there from each of the islands. For me, it was like being a kid in a candy store!

After independence in 1975, the CV government started archiving as many of the records they could after the Portuguese left. A lot of records were taken to Portugal, as well as, Brazil. What was left is currently in the Archivo Nacional de Cabo Verde. There are slave records as well as records of people and ships that left CV for the States as well as England, Australia and New Zealand, to name a few of the places where you can find CV’s of the diaspora.

This blog is my attempt to chronicle my research. My hope is to help as many people as I can find their roots while exploring my own.

My Great-Grandmother’s house in Chao de Souza, Brava

A recent phota taken from Lomba Lomba, Brava.
View of Feijao d’Agu, Brava.