Portuguese in California

Author: Nelson Ponta-Garça

Publisher:  Primedia eLaunch LLC, 2020

ISBN-10: 1636494749

ISBN-13: 9781636494746

Cost: Sold online at Amazon for $49.99

This book, inspired by the acclaimed bilingual documentary “Portuguese in California”, showcases the Portuguese-American community living in California; offering the reader a comprehensive historical overview of this unique and vibrant, but often invisible ethnic group.

In the early 16th century, when first Europeans set foot in the golden state, among the first were the Portuguese. Three centuries later, immigrants from Azores, Madeira and mainland Portugal continued to brave the oceans for months in search of a better life in this new world. Masters of the sea, Portuguese whalers, fisherman and farmers became one of the most entrepreneurial successful ethnic groups in California.

This book goes beyond the “Portuguese in California” documentary and provides insight into the history and every-day lives of these courageous immigrants, as well as their descendants, who now account for more than one million spread throughout the state, from San Diego, Los Angeles, the San Francisco Bay Area, the San Joaquin Valley to the state Capitol.

Their inspirational stories captured between the covers of this book are nothing short of a tribute to their legacy to California, their families and communities, and to their motherland, be it the Azores, Madeira, continental Portugal or any of the former Portuguese colonies from where they hailed.

It’s not my goal, or the goal of this book, to document the complete history of the Portuguese migration to California. There are many other great books on this topic. The goal is to share the life stories of generations coming to America looking for a better life in this new world, especially in the past 100 years. These selected stories are representative of thousands of others not in this book, many of them even more important than the ones presented here. At least another 500 pages would be needed to attempt to showcase a few more incredible life stories of close to ten generations, an estimated 1 million Portuguese and their descendants, if we go all the way back to 1814.

The “Portuguese In” Saga is likely to become both a historical record and a reference for generations to come.

Nelson Ponta-Garça


“A great book essential for those wanting to learn about the History of the Portuguese in California”

Maria João Lopes-Cardoso, Consul General in San Francisco

“Nelson produces professional work of the Highest quality. Highly Recommended ”

Angelo Garcia, LUCAS FILMS CEO Lucas Real Estate Holdings

“I watched Ponta-Garça work in a meticulous and organized way as if he was a sociologist and anthropologist”


“Unparalleled media initiatives that bring general awareness of the Portuguese in California”


“The PortugueseIN Saga is a reference for generations to come. A must have.”

Angela Simões, PALCUS

“A comprehensive historical overview of this unique ethnic population.”


“Incredible success stories from agriculture to hollywood!”

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