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Portuguese Footprints -- Parks and Monuments

Parks, monuments, and plaques commemorate the activities of Portuguese pioneers.

Years:  1815 — 2020

Many organizations and individuals have been active in recording and preserving the contributions made by Portuguese immigrants and their descendants. Books in both English and Portuguese have been written, parks built, museums established, folklore and cultural groups organized, and Portuguese language classes held at all educational levels.

The U.P.E.C. Freitas Library in San Leandro has an extensive collection of books relating to Portuguese culture and immigrant experiences. In addition, a museum highlighting the history and activities of the U.P.E.C. is in the same building.  Other museums highlighting the fraternal benefit societies are also located at the S.P.R.S.I. headquarters in Oakland and the I.D.E.S. and U.P.P.E.C. locations in Hayward.  Two other museums, the Portuguese Historical Center in San Diego and the Portuguese Historical Museum in San José offer visitors an opportunity to relive some of the immigrant experience.

Parks, monuments, and plaques found throughout the state commemorate the activities of Portuguese pioneers.  The best-known is the Cabrillo Monument in the Point Loma area of San Diego.  In San Leandro, the Monument to the Portuguese Immigrant was dedicated in Root Park in 1964. The Julio J. Bras Portuguese Centennial Park in Hayward was dedicated in 1976 as part of the City of Hayward’s Bicentennial Celebration.  The Portuguese Community Park in Sacramento was developed by the Portuguese Historical and Cultural Society in an area that was once an enclave of Portuguese immigrant farmers. It was dedicated in 1988.

The Portuguese Hall in Newcastle is the only Portuguese hall registered as a State Point of Interest and in the National Register of Historical Places.

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