Acknowledgement and Appreciation

Kingsley Paul Alston McCartney;

This website is the initative of Kingsley McCartney (my brother). He had the vision and forsight to recognise the importance and significance of making these family documents available and future appreciation for all to see.

Margaret De Cabral (Gonsalves);

Margaret provided many of the photograph portraits and scenes of early Antigua and other West Indies islands, filling in historical and familial linkages especially with the Gonsalves and Gomes families.

Curtis Antonio Gomes;

Curtis Antonio Gomes dedicated many years to researching, mapping and documenting the progeny of families Camacho, De Freitas, Gomes, Gonsalves, Joaquim, Mendes and others. These kindred were important players of the Portuguese Madeira diaspora that flourished in Antigua and the wider West Indies islands from the mid 19th century.

Curtis travelled to Maderia and Antigua studying and gathering family history data from church archives and surviving family members, eliciting valuable primary source documents and rare family photographs many of which can be seen on this website.

On behalf of the descendants of these families, I would like to acknowledge the invaluable data sources, comments and guidance provided by Curtis. His work contributes significantly to our knowledge of the interrelationships of these families, their social, economic and political contribution to Antiguan and West Indies society.

His research is deeply appreciated and faithfully recorded on this website.

Extract from Curtis's historical records:

"Several groups had gone to Trinidad, 30,000 to Guyana; however, the first group of 215 immigrants arrived in Antigua in May of 1847. Among them was Antonio Joseph Camacho. By July 1870, close to 2,000 had made they way to the island. A small minority, over 100, were from the Cape Verde Island." Curtis Antonio Gomes, September 2004.
A stanza authored by Fernando Pessoa captures the hopes and dreams of these family members following their settlement in Antigua during a tumultus period of West Indies social history. Curtis Antonio Gomes:
Mar Portugese (abridged) translation
O Mar Salgado, quanto do teu sal
Sao lagrimas do Portugal
Por te cruzamo, quantas maes choraram
Quantos filhos resaram, quantas noivas ficaram para casar...
O Mar, Deus o perigo e o abismo deu
Mas nelle espelhou o ceu
O salty sea, how much of your salt are tears from Portugal.
By you we have crossed
How many mothers have cried?
How many children's prayers have you heard?
How many fiancees are waiting to marry?
God gave the sea danger and the abyss.
But in it, is the reflection of the heavens.
Fernando Pessoa. Mensagem, 1934

Additional contributors to this website


Stephen Reginald Birkett

many others

Nora-Anne and Rosemary Birkett


Reginald Armstrong and Winifred Theresa McArtney


Charles A Mendes


Daniel Mendes

Colin McCartney, webmaster
Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
December 2004