CLAIMS THAT PORTUGUESE PRECEDED PILGRIMS TO NEW ENGLAND
August 3, 1966
When the Pilgrims came ashore
on Plymouth rock from the Mayflower in 1620, the Indians were tossing
Portuguese words around as though they owned them, which indeed they
did, since the words were in their language.
This is the newest
debunking fruits of scientific scholarship. It debunks the commonly
held view that the Pilgrims were the first whites to step ashore in New
England and the first colonizers in that time hallowed part of the
It puts Americans of
Mayflower descent in the position Americans of Italian descent
were in last fall when scientific scholarship produced documentary
evidence that American had been discovered by Vikings long before
Columbus set sail on his "discovery" voyage in 1492.
The new fruits show
the Portuguese got into what are now the New England states at least a
century before the Pilgrims arrived, and in numbers large enough to
interface the native language with Portuguese. However, Mayflower
Americans took at least the first impact with the utmost calm.
Schneider, executive secretary of the New York state branch of the
Mayflower Society said Mayflower Americans have never claimed their
ancestors were the first whites and first colonizers in New England.
themselves had some inkling other than whites had preceded them.
She cited the writings of William Bradford, second governor of the
Plymouth Rock colony. Anyhow, precedence is of no importance, she
said. What was important to her were the advanced views the
Pilgrims brought with them--- that all men are equals and women are the
equals of men.
The producer of the
new fruits is Dr. Manuel Luciano Da Silva, physician amateur
archaeologist, linguist, and a New Englander, although no of Mayflower
descent (he practices medicine in Bristol County, Rhode Island). His
research showed he languages of the New England Indians contained many
Portuguese words and Portuguese names had been attached to rivers,
lakes and other places before the Pilgrims came. The Indian chief
who befriend the Pilgrims was Massasoit (from that word is derived
Massachusetts). But it was a title, Da Silva said. The
chief's name was Ossanaquina, which in Portuguese means "glory to the
name was 100 per cent Portuguese." It was Quadequina. The
Narragansett Chief was Quinapin, and Maines's was Amenquina while
Massasoit's minister of war, said Da Silva.
He recalled that Portuguese
navigators colonized over much of the world in the 15th and 16th
Centuries. In 1501 Gaspar Cortereal set sail for North America.
when he had not returned to Portugal a year later, his brother, Miguel,
led a rescue expedition. Neither was hear from again.
evidence is they and their crews were the first white colonizers in New
England-but in what was the Portuguese way. That was to 'mingle
freely' with the natives, "motivated by missionary zeal or by a real
sense of brotherhood or perhaps simple promiscuity."
separated them from the arriving Pilgrims. By then the Portuguese had
made their mark- on Indian blood lines as well as Indian
languages. Da Silva published his scholarship fruit in the
journal, "Medical Opinion and Review."
More Reading on this subject;
Rock --- Does it contain the name of Gaspar Corteral's brother
Miguel and he date 1511?
Indians and Portuguese Language --- Portuguese Pilgrims and
Dighton Rock, Dr. Manuel Luciano Da Silva