Our History

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It all started with Mariano...When, at eighteen years old, Mariano J. Silva left his native village of Candelaria on the island of Sao Miguel, he had no trade or idea of how he was going to support himself. Yet, possessed with a pioneering spirit, he was determined to make a mark here in his adopted country. 

The year was 1884 and the country was about to embark on the industrial revolution. After working at several menial tasks, he was hired as an insurance salesman for Prudential Life Insurance Company – a job which earned him the nickname of  Tio Mariano de Seguro. 

As more and more immigrants arrived from the Azores, and deaths among the Portuguese were handled by funeral directors who did not speak the language, he decided to become a funeral director. Ever since his first call (the burial of a precious stillborn) in August of 1890, Mariano’s empathy and compassion have become a lasting tradition within the Silva family of funeral directors.

 On the death of Mariano in 1934, his three sons, Manuel B., Anthony T. and Mariano Jr.  who expanded the family service area by opening funeral homes in Taunton, New Bedford and Fairhaven, carried on the business. In Taunton, Manuel B. was later joined by his son, William R. Silva and his daughter, Dorothy J. King. Dorothy was one of the first handful of women to choose the path of a funeral director in the state of Massachusetts. William was later joined by his two sons, Mark B. Silva and Bruce W. Silva. Together, they have carried the high standard of service and compassion set by Mariano himself. 

 In 2017, Amy L. Silva Rigtrup, the great great granddaughter of Mariano J. Silva stepped away from her father’s funeral homes in Fall River and Somerset to ensure that the Silva Funeral Home in Taunton would stay in the family upon the well-deserved retirement of her cousins. Amy has partnered with Lawrence J. Quintal and Christine M. Quintal to continue serving the community of Taunton with Mariano’s tradition of empathy and compassion, providing quality and personalized memorialization of its cherished loved ones.

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