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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
1851 1902


A letter from Eugenio Ponton from the port of Havana to the mayor's office. It details a dispute between Gregorio Tejedor and the Society of Pereda, Machado y Co over compensation for some Chinese settlers that Tejedor contracted from the company.

The Superior Civil Government investigates the Society of Bustmante y Troncaso's hiring practices, relating to the illegal hiring of Chinese settlers under the age of 14. Many of their contracts did not mention the age of the settlers as to avoid the legal age requirements.

This is a story about a rich lady Josephine and her daily life.

This is a short story about love.

A letter from the Japanese Emperor Meiji to Tomás Estrada Palma, the first President of the Republic of Cuba. It details the emperor's congratulations for this new country and the new president. The Republic of Cuba declared its independence from the United States and was established on May 20th, 1902.

Created Date
1902-12-29

A short story about the life of a fisherman named Philip. 鲨魚翅

Created Date
1898

The Chinese version of Cuban fiction "Protector". 保護者

Created Date
1889

Laws pertaining to the legal rights of of landowners living in a certain area and their obligations. This includes how owners are supposed to write their contracts with their Chinese workers, including informing them of their payment and the terms of their contracts.

Created Date
1886

A letter from an unnamed office of the port of Havana to the Royal Administration. It details the arrival of a ship in the harbor that brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba to work under contract with Manuel B. de Pereda.

Created Date
1882-02-05

Records of new Chinese settlers who arrived in Cuba ill. They disembarked from the ship and were treated at the Principle "Depot." Only their names are listed.

Created Date
1872-08-18