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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.


A contract between Lin Kun Mui or Manuel, a Chinese settler, and R. Calderon, the agent of La Alianza y Co. The contract was to last for an undisclosed amount of time and lists the legal requirements of both the employee and the employer. Notes the contract was transferred to Jose Manuel Palla. Lin Kun Mui did not negotiate or sign the contract as the signature stipulates that someone else signed for him.

Created Date
1867-03-18

A contract between Manuel, a Chinese settler, and Gabriel Vivo y Fuentes. The contract was to last for a year and lists the legal requirements of both the employee and the employer. Manuel completed a contract with Dona Lorna previously. Manuel did not negotiate or sign the contract as the signature stipulates that someone else signed for him. Signed by Vivo y Fuentes, the governor, and two witnesses.

Created Date
1869-08-04

A contract between Julian, a Chinese settler, and Valentin de la Villa. The contract was to last for a year and lists the legal requirements of both the employee and the employer. Julian did not negotiate or sign the contract as the signature stipulates that someone else signed for him. Signed by Manuel, Valentin de la Villa, Jose Lope Francas, Guillermo Manuel Gomez.

Created Date
1865-07-22

A complaint filed by Francisco Orta in the name of three Chinese settlers, Francisco, Manuel, and Pablo concerning their contracts.

Created Date
1861

An identity card for Manuel, originally from Macao. Manuel was twenty-four years old when this card was issued. He worked for the Society of Immigration for eight years.

Created Date
1860

List of workers who were recently hired by various employers. It lists the name of the employer or company, the name of the settler and their personal details.

Created Date
1872

An identity card, or cedula, for Manuel, originally from Macao. Manuel was twenty four years old when this card was issued. He had an eight year contract with the Society of Immigration.

Created Date
1866-05-07

Records for the ship Encarnacion, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Marino Gillado. On this trip, Encarnacion brought twenty settlers from China to work for Juan Vermay.

Created Date
1865-03-22