Christening Record – Manuel de Souza LIMA


Nossa Sehora de Piedade, Cathedral in Cajazieras, Brazil

To start the great genealogy reset I selected my mother’s line for a few reasons:

  1. I had yet to really do any work with it so there wasn’t much to “redo”
  2. It is centered in Paraiba, Brazil and as far as I know stayed there for the foreseeable past so the record search will be localized to one area and language.
  3. I expect all my “from home” or family history library research options will be exhausted quickly and I’ll be “finished” with this line fairly soon.

I want this to be a real test of my newly established research practices and organization so this line should be perfect for that! I’ll be starting with Manoel, my mother’s grandfather since I have some information already from her since she met him and knew some details. Also, he is far enough back in time that the records are more readily available.

Manoel Tree

Starting with my mother (1) Manoel (4) is her grandfather. This chart is from my new “clean” database and doesn’t contain any unverified facts.

First up, the christening record for Manoel de Souza LIMA. This was actually the very first record I ever found (years ago!) using microfilm at the Family History Library in SLC. It was so exciting! Now, all these images are digitized which makes searching much easier!

Nossa Senhora da Piedade (Cazajeiras, Brasil), Batismos 1800, Jan - 1886 Abr, image 136, page 118, Manuel christening record; digital images, Family Search ( : downloaded 20 May 2016).

Nossa Senhora da Piedade (Cazajeiras, Brasil), Batismos 1800, Jan – 1886 Abr, image 136, page 118, Manoel christening record; digital images, Family Search ( : downloaded 20 May 2016).


Manoel, branco, filho legitimo de Ildefonso de Souza Lima, a-
gricultor e Maria da Conceição de Jesus, sem officio, moradores
na Malta Fresca, Frequizia de Nossa Senhora da Piedade de Ca-
jazeiras, naseido a vinte e dous de Dezembro de mil oito centos
oitena e quatro e baptizado solemimente por mim na Ma-
triz no dia vinte e trez de dito mez e anno, sendo padrinhos
Tenente Acario de Souza Rolim e sua mulher Antonia O-
lindina do Conto Rolim; do que para constar mandou fa-
zer este termo, em que se assigna {signature}.


Manoel, white, legitimate son of Ildefonso de Souza Lima,
farmer, and Maria da Conceição de Jesus, not employed, residents
of the Malta Fresca, Parish of Nossa Senhora da Piedade of
Cajazeiras, born on the twenty second of December of eighteen hundred
eighty four and solemnly baptized by me in the
chapel on the twenty third day of the same month and year, as godparents
Lieutenant Acario de Souza Rolim and his wife Antonia
Olindina do Conto Rolim; for the record I ordered this record
made, and to attest, I sign {signature}.


Here are all the “facts” I was able to draw from this document and add to my new clean database:

  • Manoel is the son of Ildefonso de Souza LIMA and Maria da Conceição DE JESUS. He is male and was named Manoel.
  • His birth date is 22 Dec 1884 in Cajazieras, Brazil.
  • Ildefonso is a farmer.
  • Manoel was “legitimate” meaning his parents were married prior to his birth. So I should be able to find a marriage record for them prior to 22 Dec 1884.
  • Manoel was christened in the Nossa Senhora da Piedade church in Cajazeiras, Brazil on 23 Dec 1884.
  • His godparents were Lieutenant Acario de Souza ROLIM and his wife Antonia Olindina doe Conto ROLIM who were likely friends with Manoel’s parents.

That is quite a bit of information from just this one record. From here I can keep going with Manoel’s parents and try to find a marriage record or keep looking in the birth records for any other siblings. Luckily his father’s name, Ildefonso, is quite unique to the area (although I have come across another man with that same first name in the records) so it should be relatively easy to find siblings and the marriage record.

His mother’s name, Maria, is much more common and I’ve even come across another Maria da Conceição but she didn’t have the “de Jesus” part so I’m pretty sure she’s a different woman.

The fun continues!

Posted by on 28 May 2016 | Posted in Brazil, Christening Record, De Jesuz, Lima, Paraiba | Comment

More trouble in Brazil

Joaquim Pedro da Silva, b. 1910, taken Summer 1995 by me

In the summer of 1995 my family traveled to Brazil to visit family. I was 14 years old and had never met most of them. I clearly remember meeting my Great-Grandfather Joaquim. He was an hilarious, albeit crotchety, old man.

Since I’ve had such trouble with the search for my Grandmother Lindalva’s birth record I stepped back and thought maybe she might not have been born in Joao Pessoa after all. Her father, Joaquim, was born in Alagoa Grande, about 100 km east of Joao Pessoa. So, on a lark, I decided to look through Alagoa Grande’s parish records to see if I could find Joaquim’s birth/christening record.

Here’s what I knew* before I started:
* by knew I mean that my father had collected these dates/places from speaking with family members many years ago…but there are very few documents (yet) to support these claims.

Joaquim Pedro da Silva
b. 9 Jun 1910, Alagoa Grande, Paraiba, Brazil
m. 15 Sep 1948, Joao Pessoa, Paraiba, Brazil
d. 24 Dec 2001, Joao Pessoa, Paraiba, Brazil
Note: his marriage date is 14 years after his oldest child, my grandmother, was born. That date comes from a copy of his civil marriage certificate. Perhaps they were married in the Catholic church on another date but didn’t register the marriage with the government? As always, more research is needed.

So, I went off in search of his christening record, and here’s what I found:

Source: Family Search, “Brazil, Catholic Church Records,” digital image, Family Search ( : downloaded 11 March 2013), Image 95, page 89, Entry 252; Brazil, Parish and Diocesan Records – Paraíba – Alagoa Grande – Nossa Senhora da Boa Viagem – Batismos 1909, Ago-1911, Maio.


SERIOUSLY!!!???!!! Come on now! Not only is the page torn away but the microfilm-er didn’t move over the small stub of the previous page which covered some of what was left. I even tried using the next page (back side of this one) and darkening the bit you could see through the page to see if I could read it. Nope.

Anyway, I believe entry number 252 to be his. Here’s what I’ve worked out:

By looking at a previous entry (from the top of the page) I decided that this particular scribe had a “template” for all his entries. (I double checked that this was the same throughout the previous and subsequent pages.)

Template: Date of baptism, “I baptized in the font of this Parish”, Name of child, age of child in days, parent(s) names, godparents names, testify of truthfulness and signature.

So what did I learn from this record?

  • A child named Joaquim was baptized on or around 9 June 1910
  • The child was perhaps 23 days old or even 23 hours old?
That’s it!

Researching in Brazil is hard!

Posted by on 11 March 2013 | Posted in Birth Record, Brazil, Christening Record, Da Silva, Paraiba | Comment