Category Archives: Family History |

Manuel Mendes and Selene Machado: a Portuguese Story

My Portuguese origins

My grandmother Selene (my paternal grandmother) left her parents behind to go and live with Manuel Mendes and after that her parents came to Canada. Selene grew up in a rural village and so did Manuel (my paternal grandfather). Manuel went from Portugal to France and after he came to Canada so he already talked French.

This is what I learned from my interview with my grandmother Selene Machado. My grandparents Manuel Mendes and Selene Machado came from Caldas da Rainha and they speak Portuguese. They came to Canada by airplane.


The materials of this tablecloth are cotton and wool. Usually the cotton comes from the north of Portugal. My mom bought it in Portugal in 1996.

As I said, Selene left Portugal and came to Canada because she married Manuel in Caldas da Rainha and he was already here in Canada. Manuel had come to Canada for a job and to start a new life in Canada. Manuel came in 1965 and when he got here a friend was waiting for him. Selene came in 1967. They arrived in Dorval and settled in Montreal North. Selene says she felt happy to come live in a country she didn’t know. She got here during winter and she had never seen so much snow! Continue reading