My name is Roxanne. I am researching my family surname Coelho.
My Grandfather Joseph Mendes Coelho came to the USA in the late 1800's. The story has it that he was a stow away on a ship. Remarkably he renamed himself as Joseph Mendes Coelhos deVega. I just learned that there was ship that hailed from Portugal in 1891 by the name of "Vega". Which makes me believe he added the "s" to his last name meaning sailed on the ship Vega...."de" Vega.
Once he was here, he only used the name Joseph M. Coelhos and that's what's on his SSDI record. I know he had a brother Anthony Coelho that visited him (in CT) and "uncle Tony" lived in California (per my aunt). The CA voting registry does show a Anthony Coelho being registered there. He also had a sister and many family members he left in Portugal. When he would write to the family he wrote in Portugese and would seal the envelope with a "family crest". We are searching for a replica of the crest now. Do you have any more information that may be of some help?