The Centro de Conhecimento dos Azores (CCA)has digitized all the Azorean records. Currently, the passports for all three major ports are online: Ponta Delgada, Sao Miguel; Horta, Faial; and Angro do Heroismo, Terceira are up. Find them here. **Please note that these online records may only display properly in Internet Explorer or Safari web browsers.
The easiest way to locate the passports is the Tomba site but you can go directly to the CCA site as listed below:
Here are some Passenger Lists of ships that traveled from the Azores to America in various years. The extractions were done by me, unless otherwise noted. At any rate, they were all extracted from microfilms available at the Family History Center of the Mormon Church.
In some, the passenger's destination was simply given as "United States." Although I did my best, some of the names were very hard to read and a few, were unreadable. You will recognize those by the strange spelling you will see.
On these lists, you will notice that, very often, the men were listed first, followed by the women and children. This may make it difficult to identify families you were expecting to be listed together.
Hopefully, though, one of you may recognize a family member you have been searching for. I hope to extract more of these lists in the future.
Bark Fredonia Fayal to Boston, 16 June 1866
Brig Evanista Fayal to Boston, 5 July 1866
SS Dominique Flores to Boston, 7 Aug 1866
Bark Fredonia Fayal to Boston, 29 Aug 1866
Bark Sarah Fayal to Boston, 23 Dec 1889
Bark Sarah Fayal to Boston, 24 April 1892
Ship passenger lists below courtesy of Immigrant Ships Transcribers Guild
Brig Aliguash 22 September 1846
SS Vega 21 May 1891
Bark Sarah 1 June 1891
SS Olinda 2 June 1891
SS Vega 11 July 1891
SS Olinda 14 September 1891
SS Olinda 2 May 1892
SS Olinda 2 July 1892
SS Oevenum 8 September 1892
SS Vega 29 December 1892
Bark Sarah 22 December 1894
Olinda 3 April 1895
I would like to share with you, the story of an immigrant family's voyage to America from Ireland in 1790. Although this family was not Portuguese, I believe you will find it interesting reading -- especially if you consider that most of our ancestors arrived here in much the same way as the WORKMANS. This is about the family of Benjamin WORKMAN and his wife, Elizabeth (Betty) WILSON and their five sons. Benjamin and Betty were my 6th Great Grandparents. As you will read, this family obviously had the means to be able to afford the purchase of staterooms for their voyage instead of steerage as so many others were forced to do. Still, though, I think it is a well written and informative account of what a trip to the New World was like. As you will see, too, at the end of their voyage, the problems they encountered when searching for lost family members were probably experienced by many of our ancestors.
This information is being generously shared by Judy GAUMER. It came from her grandmother, Mary Beatrice ARMSTRONG FOX who had interviewed other family members and used old letters and other documents to put together this very interesting story of what life was like on a voyage to America. Judy's contact information follows the story. Enjoy!
"The voyage was a very unpleasant and sorrowful experience. The family of Benjamin and Betty WORKMAN at this time consisted of five sons: Hugh 18, Samuel 10, Benjamin 7, Joseph 4, and John, a small child probably 18 months of age. As we know that Joseph was four years old and records show that he was born in 1786, it must have been in 1790 that the WORKMANS left Ireland for the New World.
A row boat carried them out to the sailing ship anchored among the fishing smacks in the harbor. Sailors helped them up the swaying ladder to the ships deck. There, all was noise and confusion, boxes, barrels, kegs, and bales everywhere. There was scarcely standing room.
However, they would be much more comfortable than the emigrants in the hold of the ship for two staterooms were to be shared by the family of seven. The four boys, Hugh, Samuel, Joseph, and Benjamin were to occupy one and the parents and baby John the other. These rooms were five feet long and six feet wide. A narrow shelf or bunk along side took up most of the space. Their boxes and bags of clothing were stored under the bunks and coats and articles of everyday apparel hung from pegs above them and swung to and fro with the motion of the ship. The two small boys had a bed of comforts on the floor between the bunks. The ceilings were so low that a full grown man could not stand upright. One small porthole admitted light and air. The door was in two parts and either part, upper and lower, could be opened separately. During storms the portholes were covered by heavy shutters called "dead lights" and air was admitted through the door opening on a narrow, dark passage. The rooms were reached by a "companionway" or steep stairway very much like a ladder leading down from the deck.
There was no way of heating the staterooms and artificial light was provided by tallow candles in tin holders fastened against the walls. When the ship pitched and rolled in a storm the candles were extinguished, the cover was put on the companionway and fastened down and cabins and staterooms were in complete darkness.
They were only a few days out of port when a gale came up. The port hole was closed, also the companionway. The WORKMANS were prisoners below decks in the rooms and cabin. They were unable to see anything that happened either inside or outside. The noise and confusion were terrifying. The running and shouting of the sailors; the flopping and ripping of canvas; the howling of the wind; the roaring of the waves as they washed over the deck and the creaking of the ship's timbers all combined to drown all sounds inside.
All day long for several days the ship rode the waves, climbing upward till it seemed she must fall over backward, then pausing for a moment before pitching forward with a plunge that seemed to rip the planks asunder. It was impossible to stand or walk. The WORKMANS took to their beds. The waves washed across the decks and water poured down into the cabin and staterooms.
The bed on the floor where the little boys slept was ruined and they had to bunk with their brothers the best they could. Everything that was not nailed down tight went rolling and pitching about. The boys were sometimes thrown from their bunks and bruised and battered by striking against the walls or the opposite bunks.
The men were called on deck to help the sailors who were worn out and their hands cut and bleeding from pulling at the wet ropes.
The nights seemed endless. Hogsheads of water, lashed on deck, broke away and went rolling and crashing about finally going over into the sea. Crates of fowls, swept loose by the waves and wind went sliding about at last carrying the terrified and squawking hens and cocks overboard to a watery grave. Everybody was sick and miserable.
Everything was damp and the chill and cold penetrated to their bones. Sometimes during a brief lull in the noise they could hear the emigrants in the steerage; a child's shriek of terror or an old man's groan. Sometimes they sang hymns or wild Irish melodies.
These people were crowded in like cattle in a train. They slept on the floor in rows, using whatever rags or clothes they could get as bedding. When the hatches were closed ad battened down they were in total darkness. There was no ventilation. The most of these poor people had sold themselves to the captain for a term of years (four or five usually) in order to work out their passage money. When they reached America they would be sold as servants until their passage was paid for.
No wonder they were unhappy -- their homes behind them, an uncertain future ahead, and terror and misery in the present. But still they all looked forward to America as a land of freedom and opportunity.
The gale lasted for several days, but at last it was over, the hatches were opened and everybody crept out on the decks to enjoy the sunshine and fresh air.
The sailors were swabbing the decks and mending the sails. Instead of thimbles, they had thick pads of leather on the palms of their hands and as they sewed they sang lustily:
Blow winds, I love to hear you
Blow, bullies, blow --
As though there had not been plenty of blowing! Now they could at least have a fire in the cabin stove and could cook some warm food.
The first storm was the hardest and lasted the longest but it was not the only one by any means. The light wooden vessel had been driven from her course. They saw icebergs off Nova Scotia.
As a climax to their miseries, small pox broke out in the steerage and spread to the crew and other passengers. Among those who died were two of the WORKMAN boys. The baby, John, went first and a few days later, his brother, Hugh, followed him in death.
A burial at sea is a very sad and solemn service. In an epidemic such as this a burial must take place immediately. So the little bodies were sewn in canvas and a heavy weight tied to the feet. Then they were laid on a smooth plank one end of which rested on a railing of the deck, the other end being supported by a sailor or friend of the family. Usually, the chaplain or captain or a clergyman passenger read the "burial service for those who die at sea."
"Looking for the Resurrection through our Lord Jesus Christ, we now commit his body to the deep."
At these words, the end of the plank was raised and the body slid feet first into the sea and disappeared into the waves.
Benjamin WORKMAN himself officiated at the funeral service for his children and during the voyage (length of time unknown) he performed the same service many times for more than a third of their ships company died.
At this time, all the water for drinking, cooking, and all domestic purposes was carried in barrels aboard ship. Their passage being longer than usual and having lost several hogsheads of water during the storms, a water famine threatened them. Some water intended for washing had been put in barrels which had been used for oil and was quite unfit for drinking but they were glad to have this evil tasting and smelling liquid to drink, but not a drop could be used for other purposes. They could not even wash their hands nor faces.
Finally, however, the ship reached the port for which she started, Havre de Grasse, Maryland, and from there the WORKMANS began their search for Hugh and James WORKMAN, brothers of Benjamin. They went to York, Pennsylvania, the place where they had last been heard from, but when they reached there they were told that the older WORKMANS had gone west of the Alleghenies. This made further search impossible for as far as Benjamin was concerned, they might just as well have been out of the world. So, they gave up all thoughts of finding them."
24118 Wilderness Trail
Olmsted Falls, OH 44138.