The Goans

A Summary of the Early History of Goa


A Summary of the Early History of Goa (2000 BC - 1500 AD)


By: Alfredo Froilano de Mello(click to see biography).


In Sumerian Times ~ 2200 BC

The first written reference to Goa appears to have been in cuneiform, in Sumerian times, when King Gudea of Lagash called it Gubio. This was around 2200 BC In fact Goa was shaped geographically and ethnically by many cultures that single it out from other parts of India.


Sumerians must have designed the fields of Goa because these follow their measure. Unlike the 0.46 unit generally prevalent in India, it is pointed out that the portioning in Goa agrees with the Sumerian 12 cubits to a pole, and 0.495 of a metre to a cubit.


Goa  and  Zanzibar

The Goan presence in Zanzibar is now hundreds of years old . Though always small in numbers the enduring presence of talented Goan merchants, teachers and craftsmen allowed them to leave quite a mark on Zanzibar history and society.


A Goan presence in the early exploration of East Africa must also be noted. In 1856 the explorer Richard Burton traveled to Bombay with his second in command Lt John Hanning Speke, in order to obtain leave for Lt. Speke from the Indian Army. There Burton engaged two Goans as traveling assistants. They were Valentine Rodrigues and Gaetano Andrade.




GOANS OF KENYA - By Dr Teresa Albuquerque


Review by Valentino Fernandes

Perhaps no other small community has had as much literature devoted to them and their new countries as of East Africa Goans, chronicling their struggles for survival, describing their high achievements, glories and the halcyon times. The process persists but the bulk of the books have rendered the same beyond the reach of most interested readers back in India. Dr (Mrs) Teresa Albuquerque's book Goans of Kenya, published in Mumbai, therefore comes as a breath of fresh air.
The book is more than a new development. Dr Albuquerque is not a journalist-turned-writer but a historian of repute, who was awarded a scholarship by the Heras Institute, Mumbai, of which she is a Fellow, to undertake research on Goans in East Africa. She already has to her credit seven other books, delving into the colonial past of Bombay and Goa, with a fair amount of text devoted to Goans. It is this that whets the Goan reader and academician's appetite for this book.




Mombasa xi

In 1946 Pascoal was transferred to Mombasa. His hard work had merited acknowledgment. He was selected for the post of Provincial Office Superintendent of the Coast Provinces - an appointment demanding considerable responsibility, initiative and organising ability. His duties involved handling financial and personnel matters, thus relieving the Provincial Commissioner of much day-to-day routine. He occupied this post till 1948.


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Zanzibar Christians


1500-1800 The Portuguese.


Christianity was first introduced to Zanzibar by the Portuguese. Moving up the from the south after successfully rounding the Cape of Good Hope in 1488 they staged a violent and ultimately unsuccessful bid to lay claim to the harbours, trading routes and resources of almost 2000 miles of African coastline.


Goa and Zanzibar

The Goan presence in Zanzibar is now hundreds of years old . Though always small in numbers the enduring presence of talented Goan merchants, teachers and craftsmen allowed them to leave quite a mark on Zanzibar history and society.


More interesting history on Zanzibar

Cyprian Fernandes: Headlines of my life!

Kenya Uganda Tanzania, Goan, African, UK, Australia,USA, Asia et al nostalgia and news, sports, musicians, entertainment, biographies, achievers, histories, eulogies and other stories


Cyprian Fernandes: The historic Goan network in East Africa



The King of Ruaraka, Nairobi



An excerpt from Forward to Independence Fitz de Souza My Memoirs. Reproduced with the kind permission of the de Souza family. Available on Amazon Books

Goan contribution to the Civil Service


by Rosendo P. Abreo


I, as a retired officer from the Colonial Government of Kenya after over 30 years of service, look with pride at the part played by Goans in the Kenya Civil Service. The available records show that Goan immigration to British East Africa commenced during construction of the Uganda Railway, between 1897 and 1898, peaking in 1899 and 1900 when the Railway's Headquarters were moved from Mombasa to Nairobi.


Fitz de Souza: Kenyatta’s right hand man reveals all in memoir..

Forward to Independence, the long-awaited memoir by the outstanding Goan lawyer and parliamentarian, Fitz de Souza is out. A worthwhile eye-opener for the sons and daughters and ex-East African Goans, it talks about the role that Fitz played in the early life independent Kenya and also, his journey which starts with his ancestors in Goa, his father’s move to Zanzibar and family’s life.. and more. CYPRIAN FERNANDES reviews the book

Author Selma Carvalho.

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'A Railways Runs Through: Goans of British East Africa, 1865 - 1980'
Pages 192. ISBN 978-93-84129-21-7
Now available at Broadways Book Stores in Goa or order directly from the author based in London. The font on this book is suitable for senior readers. For reviews of the book, see:
Councillor Rabi Martins releases a 'A Railway Runs Through: Goans of British East Africa: 1865—1980' by author Selma Carvalho.

Tina Athaide: Forgotten Histories of Ugandan Goans

By Selma Carvalho

Tina Athaide was born in Uganda, and left as a young child with her family for London. They escaped the grim Idi Ami expulsions but were faced with its repercussions as refugees by way of family and friends sheltered in their London house. The family then re-emigrated to Canada. Her book Orange for the Sunsets (HarperCollins, 2019), introduces the story of the Asian expulsion to Middle Graders across the north American continent. Here in conversation with Selma Carvalho, Athaide talks about her family, and her memories of growing up in Uganda, London and Canada.




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From Mtoto to Mzee by Mervyn Maciel


"Mervyn Maciel was born in Nairobi and went to school in Goa and Belgaum in the 1940's before returning to Kenya to take up employment with the colonial civil service. Seeking adventure, he applied for a posting in the remote and desolate Northern Frontier District where he acquired a fascination for the African wilderness and its pastoral tribes. He moved to England in 1966 when his post as Executive Officer at an Agriculture Research station was Africanised, and later wrote his first book BWANA KARANI (Mr. Clerk) about his career in the colonial administration. His second book FROM MTOTO TO MZEE (From Child to Old Man) is a story of his life from childhood to the present, his 85th year, replete with over a hundred photographs, that will resonate with anyone who has lived in Goa and East Africa, and will also help others gain an insight into the way of life during a bygone colonial era."

British Goan writer Mervyn Marciel shares his incredible story of tragedy tribesmen and settling in Sutton.


Bwana Karani

Bwana Karani
Bab Frederick Noronha Of Goa,1556 has now graciously re-issued Bwana Mervyn Maciel's first book "Bwana Karani"" as a free e-book. (First published 1985)
The now nonagenarian , albeit still very sprightly , Mervyn is needless to say very chuffed
"Born in Kenya in the late twenties, Mervyn Maciel has spent many years in East Africa. His love of the African bush and a particular fascination for the tribes – especially those from the Northern Frontier Province (N.F.D. as the Kenyan region was then known), together with his desire to live out in the wilderness close to nature, prompted him to move to some of the most outlying and isolated areas of Kenya at a very young age. He has served in many areas affected by the Mau Mau uprising and witnessed Kenya’s final march to UHURU (Freedom) and
Bwana Karani ebk-ebook-final.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [14.8 MB]
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Braz Menezes won the design for the Uhuru Street Decorations in 1963. 5 years later, he started an architectural-planning consulting firm, which grew and grew... In 1974, Mr Braz Menezes expanded the firm when David Mutiso joined him, and they changed the name to Mutiso, Menezes International. The firm became a permanent institutional contribution to Kenya to this day. In 1977, Braz Menezes moved to join the World Bank in Washington, where he spent another 23 years. Braz Menezes was proud to have made a significant contribution during the first 15 years of Kenya's independence.


Matata Books by Braz Menezes is an architect and urban planner, and a Commonwealth Scholar. He studied Creative Writing at George Brown College and attended the mentorship program at Humber College in Toronto.

Braz Menezes's news paper cuttings of 1960's

Daily Nation
News-BK profile (1) on BM Nation 1172.pd[...]
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Daily Nation
News-BK profile (2) on BM 11-72 (1).pdf
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Daily Nation
News-Uhuru decorations 8-63.pdf
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Daily Nation
News-Photo Uhuru decorations 8-63.pdf
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'#Makadara was unlike any other residential districts of #Mombasa. It was a ‘colony’ in its own right. During my time, Makadara was a cultural mix of harmoniously co-existing peoples of different traditions, faiths and origins: #Swahilis, #Baluchis, #Omanis, #Yemenis, #Seychellois and a whole range of Asian communities ~ #Goans, #Hindus, Jains, Swaminaryans, #Ismailis, #Bohras, #Ithnashiris, #Gujratis, #Punjabis, etc


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Click on Photo for the late

Mr. Pio Gama Pinto