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Chinese Immigrants in Cuba: Documents from the James and Ana Melikian Collection


The Chinese Immigrants in Cuba collection includes hundreds of original documents, manuscripts and photos covering the migration of 125,000 Chinese who signed up to be cheap labor in Cuba from 1847 until the later 1890s. The archive continues until the 1970s and records the Chinese community in Cuba and is rich with photos. This massive collection, from the archive of James and Ana Melikian Collection, is probably the largest one in private hands concerning Chinese in Cuba. At present the collection contains over 1341 records and about 8,000-9,000 pages.


Date Range
1806 2015


This is an application for permanent residency for a Chinese settler Ysidoro who worked for Dolores Hernan in Cardenas. 1868.

Created Date
1868

These are the documents for permanent residency for Saturnino, a Chinese settler in 1865. He lives in Soltero and Cardenas. His application includes his identity card.

Created Date
1865

These are the documents for permanent residency for a Chinese settler, Pablo Campo. Signed by the Colonel Governor.

Created Date
1866

These are documents for permanent residency for a Chinese settler, Vieter, originally from Canton in 1865.

Created Date
1865

Application for permanent residency for a Chinese settler, Francisco Echante in 1871.

Created Date
1871

This is an application for permanent residence for Jose Sole, a Chinese settler.

Created Date
1873

Record with multiple documents about a Chinese settler including christening record; labor-hire document; successful completion of term-contract certification; certificate of good conduct; and other documents

Created Date
1866

Application for permanent residence in Cuba for a Chinese settler, Roman. Included are his baptism certificate, a work contract and a request to be rehired, and several recommendations from the owners of the Sugar Refinery of Carmen.

Created Date
1865

These are the records of Jose Dolores, a Chinese settler brought from China to Cuba for work. The documents include handwritten contracts with various owners and recommendation letters, detailing his good behavior as a worker. His certificate of nationality is also included and was accepted by the governor of Cuba.

Created Date
1864

Application documents “Letter Home” (permanent residence on the island of Cuba) 1868. Contains: signed application documents in Chinese; certificate of baptism of the Catholic Church; Chinese settler contract in the city of Cardenas; several letters of recommendation from several owner certifying that their contracts fulfilled without problems

Created Date
1868