Plainville Black History program to focus on the migration of Cape Verdean people

Plainville Black History program to focus on the migration of Cape Verdean people

reporter photo

PLAINVILLE – The Historical Center on Pierce Street will host a program this month highlighting the history of locals who migrated from the Cape Verde Islands off the coast of Africa.

“There are several (Cape Verdean) families in Plainville,” said Gertrude LaCombe of the historical center.

Every year the center hosts a program in February for Black History Month that focuses on the history of local African Americans. This year the topic will focus on people that migrated from Cape Verde in search of a better life in America. The migration was not part of the slave trade.

Several Cape Verdean families came to live in towns like Plainville, New Britain and Waterbury.

“I think it’s an interesting history,” said Gail Williams, a Plainville resident and one of the program speakers. “It expands your knowledge.”

Williams will speak with Valeriana Angelina Gomes DeBrito on the culture and history of the Cape Verdean people, Saturday, Feb. 17, at 2 p.m.

While Williams was born in Plainville, DeBrito was born on the island of Soa Nicolau in the Cape Verde Islands before settling in Waterbury in the 70’s. DeBrito will share her experiences growing up, as well as her trip back to the island last summer. 

Guests of the program will also learn about late Plainville native Lena Santos Ferguson’s fight to break the color barrier and become a member of the Daughters of the American Revolution.

“It’s a good history lesson,” Williams said.

Known as the “voice of African American history” for the town, Williams curetted an exhibit of Plainville’s African Americans which is on permanent display at the Center. 

For more information contact Gail Williams,, 860-805-6115
Twitter: @KusReporter

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