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2005 Hall of Fame Inductees

The following are the 2005 Hall of Fame Inductees. Click on each name to read about them. "Top of Page" will bring you back to this index.

Daniel Silva Lima

Daniel LimaMr. Daniel Silva Lima was born in Fall River, Massachusetts on October 14, 1911. His parents Manuel Duarte Lima, born in Sao Nicolau, and Anna Morais Silva of Boa Vista were Cape Verdean immigrants.

Mr. Lima served honorably in the U.S. Army in the South Pacific during World War II for three years, thereafter he served in the U.S. National Guard 369th of New York for twenty-three years retiring with the rank of Staff Sergeant.

Danny lived in New York City for 42 years, working as a civil servant for 23 years, including eleven as a New York City bus driver. A talented artist, Mr. Lima attended cartooning and illustration classes in New York City under the GI Bill.

Daniel moved to Rhode Island in 1971 and resides in East Providence. He is the Co-Founder of the Cape Verdean Artist League. His art, which often depicts Cape Verdean life, has been displayed at many Cape Verdean festivals, conferences and other venues.

Upon moving to Rhode Island Mr. Lima became involved with the International Senior Citizens. He has been a past president and member of this group for over 25 years currently serving as Treasurer. He was also a member of the Retired Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP) for over 25 years, often using his skills as a bus driver to transport seniors. He is a long-time member of the Cape Verdean Sub-committee of the RI Historical Preservation & Heritage Commission. Mr. Lima is also a member of the American Cape Verdean Cultural Exchange Commission of the State of Rhode Island.

Mr. Lima, a resident of East Providence, is married to Esther Lima and the father of Lt. Col. Julio Lima of the United States Army.

A nonagenarian, Mr. Lima continues to actively participate in many cultural and civic events.

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The Honorable George S. Lima

George LimaThe Honorable George Silva Lima was born on April 4, 1919 in Fall River, Massachusetts, the son of Cape Verdean immigrant parents, Anna Morais Silva, a native of Boa Vista, and Manuel Duarte Lima, born in Sao Nicolau. George attended North Carolina A & T College where he received his pilot’s license. George was a Tuskegee airman and a military photographic officer in World War II. He graduated with a BA degree from Brown University, where he founded the local chapter of Omega Psi Phi fraternity.

Mr. Lima was the union representative for the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees – AFL. He was an employee of the federal government for many years in the Office of Economic Opportunity, culminating his federal career as State Director of OEO for the State of Rhode Island. Upon retirement Mr. Lima entered politics serving as the State Representative for District 83 in East Providence for two terms.

Mr. Lima, a civil rights activist, has been affiliated with many organizations including the Rhode Island chapter of the NAACP, where he served as President, the Cape Verdean Progressive Center, the Cape Verdean Sub-committee of the Rhode Island Historical Preservation & Heritage Commission, the American Cape Verdean Cultural Exchange Commission of the State of Rhode Island and the Boa Vista Seven.

A documentary “Black Men Can Fly: The Story of George S. Lima” was recently released.

George was married to the late Selma Boone Lima, a fellow activist and educator. He is the father of three children, Anna Maria Bowling, George S. Lima, Jr. and Robert Manuel Lima.

In retirement Mr. Lima continues to be an active participant in civil rights, political and community issues.

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Reverend Manuel Ricardo Martin

Ricardo MartinManuel Ricardo Martin was born on the Island of Maio in 1837 and came to Providence, Rhode Island in 1886. Martin was brought to the New England coast by returning whalers. He had been a ship’s mate and in charge of the stevedores on the dock. He had been converted to the Protestant faith while working aboard a ship in Australia years earlier.

Soon after his arrival in America, Martin began to conduct a worship service in his rented room. He reached out to the Rhode Island Bible Society, which responded with material support for what would come to be known as the “Portuguese Mission”. The first meeting place was on Chickenfoot Alley, the oldest Cape Verdean immigrant community in the Fox Point section of Providence.

As his “congregation” grew he located a larger room on South Water Street and placed a sign in the window “Gospel Mission”. Women and children began to join the mission. Eventually the mission church operated “Americanization” classes, sewing classes, a boxing club and even a Boy Scout troop.

Local Protestant women’s organization and the Union Congregational Church joined in to help with the work of the Mission. With the aid of the Central Congregational Church, a parcel of land was secured and a building was constructed at 51 Sheldon Street in 1904. Manuel Ricardo Martin established the very first Cape Verdean Protestant Congregation in the United States.

On December 5, 1905 Manuel Ricardo Martin passed. In 1996 the building at 51 Sheldon Street was placed on the U.S. National Register of Historic Buildings. Reverend Martin is remembered on a bronze plague affixed to the pulpit of his church.

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Ivo Pires

Ivo PiresIvo Pires was born in Brava, one and the smallest of nine islands in Cape Verde. Ivo is an exceptional musician and an extraordinary instrument maker and craftsman. A lover of music, he was always inspired when he would see musicians walking in the streets with instruments slung over their backs and always admired how the instruments wee shaped, the sound of them and everything about them. At the early age of eight, he made his first ukulele. By breaking off pieces of cedar shingle from his grandmother’s house and borrowing material from his grandfather’s mirror, he copied a Martin ukulele that belonged to his cousin. He made three ukuleles in all, each one bigger and better. He would spend most of his time in school sketching other musician’s instruments he had seen and would make them from the sketches. At the age of nine, he made and started playing the mandolin.

Everyone brought their instruments to him for repairs. He made and sold enough instruments to have money to buy a real full-size violin. He later took it apart and made another one exactly like it. At the age of eleven, adult musicians started bringing Ivo with them to weddings to play in their band. Everyone knew him in the island because of his music and craftsmanship.

Ivo came to America and settled in the New England area at the age of twenty-four. His reputation preceded him. He continued to perform in bands and make many instruments. He would send many of these instruments that he made in barrels to the Cape Verde Islands for the people there. When Cape Verdean musicians would travel to America, they would come to see him at his home for a violin that was lost while traveling or to have him make repairs on their instruments. He would either repair or give them a new one off the shelf.

Ivo took a job at the Carl Fischer Company in Boston and became known for his talent to repair string instruments as well as wind instruments. He left the Carl Fischer Company to work at the Boston String Instruments. There he made violins, cellos, bass, gambas, mandolins and guitars. He worked for Mr. Melvin Peabody at the Boston String Instruments for thirty-one years and after the death of Mr. Peabody, Ivo bought and operated the Boston String Instruments for six years until he was forced to retire because of health issues.

Ivo has repaired instruments for the likes of Yo-Yo Ma, the greatest cellist in the world. His tribute and his lifetime achievement have been his own creation of the Viola Da Gamba. He had seen a few pictures of one and thought it would be nice to make something like it. He later made them for classical musicians, celebrities, and members of the Boston Symphony and professors of the Conservatory.

Ivo is an interpreter of all traditional and classical Cape Verdean music. He mixes his traditional repertoire of mornas, polkas, mazukas, waltzes and fox trots with modern coladera, salsa and merengue. He has been known to be the most in-demand violinist and bandleader in the Cape Verdean event and wedding circuit. He has dedicated his life and contributed significantly to the renaissance and preservation of our Cape Verdean culture and music.

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Romana H. Ramos

Romana RamosRomana was born on the island of Santo Antonio, Cape Verde and at age three, her family moved to Sao Vicente where she grew up.

Her family moved to the United States in 1975 and settled in Providence, Rhode Island. This was the same year that Cape Verde would come to win their independence from Portugal.

In 1976, Romana organized a committee to celebrate the Fist Anniversary of Cape Verde’s Independence from Portugal. The event was held at the Cape Verdean Progressive Center (CV Club) in East Providence. Also in 1976, she was the Founder and Director of the Juventude Caboverdiana Organization.

In 1977, the Committee celebrated the 2nd Anniversary of Cape Verde’s Independence for the first time at the location of India Point Park. This event has marked its 30th year of Independence this July 2005.

1978, Romana founded and became the Director of the Cape Verdean Folkloric group called Monte Cara. They performed for the very first time at the Rhode Island Heritage Festival and were the first Cape Verdean group to perform live at the Jerry Lewis Telethon.

In 1980, Romana was Co-Founder and Director of the first Cape Verdean Radio Program in Rhode Island and she broadcast in krioule language, the language of all Cape Verdeans. In 1984, she founded the Cape Verdean Women’s Organization.

Through Romana’s diligence and persistence, a Resolution signed on June 28, 2005 by Speaker William Murphy and Leader, Gordon Fox was proclaimed that the Month of July 2005 to be “Cape Verdean Month” in the State of Rhode Island, marking the 30th Anniversary of the Independence of Cape Verde from Portugal.

Presently, Romana is Chair of the Board of Directors of the Cape Verdean American Community Development (CACD). She works full time at the Pawtucket Police Department as Police Matron and Court Interpreter for fifteen years.

Romana if very active in various organizations as a member and also as Board member. She is always willing to help and include Cape Verdeans in every cultural and ethnic event and has a special passion for all Cape Verdean students and children with all of their endeavors.

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Antonia Ignacia Ramalho Sequeira

Antonia SequeiraBorn in Bridgeport, Connecticut in 1924, she was the daughter of immigrants from the Cape Verde Island of Sao Nicolau. Her parents lived first in Warren, Rhode Island, where they worked in the mills before moving to the heart of Bridgeport’s Cape Verdean community shortly before Antonia was born. Inspired by her traditional musical family and vibrant Cape Verdean neighborhood, Antonia Ignacia Ramalho Sequeira developed a deep love and extensive knowledge of her culture.

Antonia’s collections of detailed records of community social events and family and historical photographs comprise a rare documentary record of Cape Verdeans in Connecticut during the first half of the 20th century. Among her numerous organizational affiliations, Antonia was a founding member of the Cape Verdean Women’s Social Club of Bridgeport (established 1944), and served as its president from 1965 to 1967 and again from 1970 to 2002 – a remarkable continuity of service.

In addition, she spearheaded many projects designed to bring Cape Verdean heritage to public attention. For three years, Antonia worked with community members and oral historians to conduct taped interviews with Cape Verdean musicians and tradition bearers across the state, also documenting Cape Verdean neighborhoods, festivals and activities. Their work resulted in a publication called Connecticut Cape Verdeans: A Community History that has been used by Cape Verdean organizations in Norwich and other Connecticut cities to educate people about the culture and especially the community’s gift of music. Younger Cape Verdeans in Waterbury, Norwich and New Haven are coming forward to carry on the oral history work that Antonia believed in so fervently.

In 1978, Antonia worked with others from the Women’s Social Club to sponsor a month-long series of lectures, exhibits and concerts highlighting Cape Verdean culture at Sacred Heart University in Fairfield, Connecticut. In 1984 she was selected as Woman of the Year and her name is etched in the State Capitol Building in Hartford. She was a member of the Connecticut Friends of the Ernestina/Morrissey, a group responsible for bringing the schooner to Captains Cove in Fairfield in 1982 as a way to educate audiences about Cape Verdean immigration.

Antonia coordinated regular cultural displays at the Bridgeport Public Library and the annual Thanksgiving Day Mass at St. Augustine’s Church. She held memberships and active roles in the Cape Verdean Scholarship Committee, the Cape Verdean United/Unidade Caboverdeana, the Cesar Pina Scholarship Committee, the St. James Choir, the Cape Verdean Cultural Foundation of Connecticut, and the Red Hat Society.

Antonia passed away on February 28, 2005. She will be remembered as a tireless ambassadress for Cape Verdean culture; as a tradition bearer herself – someone who lived a life of deep Cape Verdean-American identity; and as a woman of grace and love. Her contributions will live on and nourish her people and our world forever.

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