Hispanic Division: Back to Agricultural Settlements in Central California

First Portuguese Mayor, San Leandro, CA

San Leandro also gained attention when the town council elected Mrs. Helen L. C. Lawrence (née Silveira) their chair and the town's mayor. Mrs. Lawrence, who was born in Portugal and came to the United States when she was a young girl, had the distinction of being the first Portuguese mayor in the United States. Portrayed here is the San Leandro town council in April 1942, with Mrs. Lawrence presiding at the center of this male-dominated chamber. One other council member, Mr. Anthony B. Thomas, the first on the left, is also of Portuguese descent.

Five-member Board
Russell Lee. This is a Five-member Board . . . San Leandro, California, April 1942. Photograph. Prints and Photographs Division, U.S. Office of War Information, LC-USW-3-1871-D (17).

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First Portuguese Mayor, San Leandro, California

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