Preserving Portuguese Heritage in Stonington, Connecticut

January 4, 2017 § Leave a comment

Stonington, Connecticut pic

Stonington, Connecticut
Image: historicbuildingsct.com

A recipient of the National Preservation Honor Award from the National Trust for Historic Preservation, Dr. R. Christopher Goodwin, PhD, leads R. Christopher Goodwin & Associates, Inc., a preservation planning and cultural resource management group. Dr. Goodwin’s team from its Connecticut and Maryland offices has been conducting historical research for the nomination of a society’s building for inclusion in the Connecticut Register of Historic Places.

That building is the office of the Portuguese Holy Ghost Society on Main Street in Stonington, Connecticut, which has been a focal location for Portuguese immigrants in the area. The building was built in 1836 and later purchased by the society in 1929.

The Holy Ghost Society has a long history of assisting Portuguese immigrants in adapting to and becoming part of American society. Society members helped enroll children in school and assisted immigrant families in acquiring American citizenship. Members also helped teach Portuguese-speaking immigrants learn how to speak, read, and write in English.

An $8 million allocation of the Hurricane Sandy relief funds for Connecticut’s coastal communities allocated by Congress under Public Law 113-2 is the source of funding for this historical research and nomination process. The Connecticut State Historic Preservation Office is in charge of handling the nomination of the society.

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