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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 1892


This is a list of Chinese workers on the ship the Queen of England. It describes all of the workers as having an 8 year contract.

Created Date
1865-07-31

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

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

Created Date
1865-03-24

Records for the ship Francois, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Campbell y Co. On this trip, the Francios brought settlers from China to work in Havana.

Created Date
1859-02-10

Records for the ship Hong Kong, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Campbell y Co. On this trip, the Hong Kong brought settlers from China to work in Havana.

Created Date
1857-10-05

Records for the ship Hoggenbark, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Campbell y Co. On this trip, the Hoggenbank brought settlers from China to work in Havana.

Created Date
1857-06-06

Records for the ship Hoggenbark, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Campbell y Co. On this trip, the Hoggenbark brought settlers from China to work in Havana.

Created Date
1857-12-01

Records for the ship Hoggenbark, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Campbell y Co. On this trip, the Hoggenbark brought 380 settlers from China to work in Havana.

Created Date
1857-03-30

Records for the ship Hoggenbark, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Campbell y Co. On this trip, the Hoggenbark brought settlers from China to work in Havana.

Created Date
1857-04-03

Records for the ships Solide de Dieppa, Bitty Sriapera, and Messenger, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with various employers.

Created Date
1860-05-24

Records for the ship Carpenteria, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Gregorio Cejedor. On this trip, the Carpenteria brought settlers from China to work.

Created Date
1866-12-18

Records for the ship Flora, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with D. I. M. Zangroniz. On this trip, Flora brought settlers from China to work.

Records for the ship Flora, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Torices, Puente y Co. On this trip, the Flora brought 589 settlers from China to work. The ship was captained by Lafontaine.

Created Date
1866-06-21

Records for the ship, Ville de Lisna, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Banzan, the agent for the Company of Marsella. On this trip, Ville de Lisna brought settlers from China to work. The ship stopped in Macao before going to Cuba.

Created Date
1860

Records for the ship, Ville de Lisna, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Banzan, the agent for the Company of Marsella. On this trip, Ville de Lisna brought settlers from China to work. The ship stopped in Macao before going to Cuba.

Created Date
1860-05-02

Shipping records for the ship the Vasco de Gama, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with la Alianza and Ferran y Dupierris. These workers were to work for Francisco de Layas and Joaquin Diago.

Created Date
1864-06-15

Records for the ship Carmencita, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Troncaso Bustamante. Records of business deals of the Society of Troncaso Bustamante, specifically relating to their hiring practices and the ages of their settlers. Relates their illegal hiring of settlers under the age of 14. Article 8 of the laws concerning the hiring of Chinese settlers stated that the hiring of people under the age of 14 was illegal

Created Date
1860-08-24

Records for the ship Carmencita, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Troncaso Bustamante. Records of business deals of the Society of Troncaso Bustamante, specifically relating to their hiring practices and the ages of their settlers. Relates their illegal hiring of settlers under the age of 14. Article 8 of the laws concerning the hiring of Chinese settlers stated that the hiring of people under the age of 14 was illegal.

Created Date
1860-02-04

Records for the ship Carmencita, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Troncaso Bustamante. The ship stopped in Manila before going to Cuba. The ship was captained by Captain Garcia. Also records the business deals of the Society of Troncaso Bustamante, specifically relating to their hiring practices and the ages of their settlers. Relates their illegal hiring of settlers under the age of 14. Article 8 of the laws concerning the hiring of Chinese settlers stated that the hiring of people under the age of 14 was illegal.

Created Date
1860-08-24

Records for the ship Live Yankee, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Torices, Puente y Co.

Records for the ships Live Yankee and P Wakefield, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Torices, Puente y Co.

Created Date
1861

Records for the ship Grey Hound, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with la Compania Asiatica, Torices, Puente y Co, and Ferran y Dupierris. On this trip, the Grey Hound brought a worker from China to work for Antonio Nuvamete.

Created Date
1861-04-30

Records for the ship Grey Hound, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with la Compania Asiatica, Torices, Puente y Co, and Ferran y Dupierris. On this trip, the Grey Hound brought a worker from China to work for Antonio Nuvamete.

Created Date
1861-04-30

Records for the ship Francis P. Sage, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Compania Asiatica, Torices Puente y Co and Ferran y Dupierris. On this trip, the Francis P. Sage brought workers from China to work in the fields.

Created Date
1861-05-18

Records for the ship Francis P. Sage, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Compania Asiatica, Torices Puente y Co and Ferran y Dupierris. On this trip, the Francis P. Sage brought workers from China to work as domestic servants.

Created Date
1867-05-22

Records for the ship Francis P. Sage, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Compania Asiatica, Torices Puente y Co and Ferran y Dupierris. On this trip, the Francis P. Sage brought workers from China to work as domestic servants.

Created Date
1861-05-21

Records for the ship Luisita, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with La Alianza and Ferran y Dupierris. On this trip, the Luisita brought workers from China to work in the countryside.

Created Date
1864-06-10

Records for the ship Vasco de Gama, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with La Alianza and Ferran y Dupierris.

Created Date
1864-06-05

Records for the ship Francis P. Sage, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with La Compania Asiatica, Torices, Puente y Co, and Ferran y Dupierris. On this trip, the Francis P. Sage brought a worker from China to work as a domestic servant.

Created Date
1861-05-15

Records for the ship Francis P. Sage, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with La Compania Asiatica, Torices, Puente y Co, and Ferran y Dupierris. On this trip, the Francis P. Sage brought a worker from China to work as in the countryside.

Created Date
1861-05-21

Records for the ship Francis P. Sage, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with La Compania Asiatica, Torices, Puente y Co, and Ferran y Dupierris. On this trip, the Francis P. Sage brought a worker from China to work as a domestic servant.

Created Date
1861-05-21

Records for the ship Kate Hooper, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with La Compania Asiatica, Torices, Puente y Co, and Ferran y Dupierris. On this trip, the Kate Hooper brought a worker from China to work as a domestic servant.

Created Date
1861-06-04

Records for the ship Kate Hooper, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with La Compania Asiatica, Torices, Puente y Co, and Ferran y Dupierris. On this trip, the Kate Hooper brought a worker from China to work as a domestic servant.

Created Date
1861-06-04

Records for the ship Grey Hound, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with La Compania Asiatica, Torices, Puente y Co, and Ferran y Dupierris. On this trip, the Grey Hound brought a worker from China to work as a domestic servant.

Created Date
1861-05-10

Records for the ship Grey Hound, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with La Compania Asiatica, Torices, Puente y Co, and Ferran y Dupierris. On this trip, the Grey Hound brought a worker from China to work as a domestic servant.

Created Date
1861-05-10

Records for the ship Luisita, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with La Alianza and Ferran y Dupierris. On this trip, the Luisita brought three workers from China to work for Fosca y Araoz in Sagua la Grande.

Created Date
1864-06-09

Records for the ship Vasco de Gama, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with La Alianza and Ferran y Dupierris. On this trip, the Vasco de Gama brought Chinese settlers to work in the countryside.

Created Date
1864-06-06

Records for the ship Vasco de Gama, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with La Alianza and Ferran y Dupierris. On this trip, the Vasco de Gama brought Chinese settlers to work in the countryside.

Created Date
1864-06-30

Records for the ship Carmencita, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Francaso Bustamante.

Created Date
1860-07-30

Records for the ship Carmencita, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Francaso Bustamante. The ship was captained by Captain Garcia and stopped in Manila before coming to Cuba.

Created Date
1860-06-30

Records for the ship Vasco de Gama, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with La Alianza and Ferran y Dupierris. On this trip, the Vasco de Gama brought An Sang Kio or Elisio from China to work for Francisco de Layas and Joaquin de Diago.

Created Date
1864-06-15

Records for the ship Live Yankee, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Torices Puente y Co. Upon arrival, Torices Puente y Co. instructed the settlers as to their legal status as was required by the government. The government also required that the company check on the mental health of their settlers after arriving in Cuba. Also lists the amounts paid to ships, captains, etc. by Torices Puente y Co for this shipment and a shipment of settlers aboard the P Wakefield.

Created Date
1861

Records for the ship Grey Hound, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with La Compania Asiatica and Torices Puente y Co. On this trip, the Grey Hound brought Nicolas, a Chinese settler, from China to work in the countryside.

Created Date
1851-04-30

Records for the ship Grey Hound, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with la Compania Asiatica and Torices Puente y Co. On this trip, the Grey Hound brought settlers from China to work in the countryside.

Created Date
1861-04-30

Records for the ship Francasa, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Y. M. Zangroniz y Compania. On this trip, the Francasa brought workers from China to work as field workers.

Created Date
1866-10-12

Records for the ship Reina de Oceano, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Troncoso, Bustamante y Co. On this trip, the Reina de Oceano brought workers from China to work as field workers in Cardenas

Created Date
1861-06-10

Records for the ship Reina de Oceano, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Troncoso, Bustamante y Co. On this trip, the Reina de Oceano brought workers from China to work as field workers.

Created Date
1861

Records for the ship Reina de Oceano, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Troncoso, Bustamante y Co. On this trip, the Reina de Oceano brought workers from China to work as field workers for Bartolome Mujano.

Created Date
1861

Records for the ship Francis P Sage, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Torices, Puente and Ferran y Dupierris. This worker was to be employed in the countryside for Luisa de Mella.

Created Date
1861-05-18

Records for the ship Francis P. Sage, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Torices, Puente and Ferran y Dupierris. This worker was to be employed as a domestic servant.

Created Date
1861-05-22

Records for the ship Francis P Sage, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Torices, Puente and Ferran y Dupierris. This worker was to be employed as a domestic servant.

Created Date
1861-05-21

Records for the ship Luisita, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with La Alianza and Ferran y Dupierris. One of these workers were contracted by Juan in Havana.

Created Date
1864-06-10

Records for the ship Vasco de Gama, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Torices, Puente and Ferran y Dupierris.

Created Date
1864-06-05

Records for the ship Francis P Sage, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Torices, Puente and Ferran y Dupierris. This worker was to be employed as a domestic servant.

Created Date
1861-03-15

Records for the ship Francis P. Sage, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Torices, Puente and Ferran y Dupierris. This worker was to be employed as a domestic servant.

Created Date
1861-03-15

Records for the ship Francis P Sage, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Torices, Puente and Ferran y Dupierris. These workers from China to work in the countryside

Created Date
1861-03-21

Records for the ship Francis P Sage, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Torices, Puente and Ferran y Dupierris. One worker from China to work as a domestic servant.

Created Date
1861-03-21

Records for the ship Kate Hooper, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Torices, Puente and Ferran y Dupierris. One worker from China to work as a domestic servant for Antonio M. Rodriguez in Matanzas.

Created Date
1861-06-04

Records for the ship Grey Hound, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Torices, Puente and Ferran y Dupierris. On this trip, the Grey Hound brought a worker to work as a domestic servant.

Created Date
1861-05-10

Records for the ship Kate Hooper, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Torices, Puente and Ferran y Dupierris. On this trip, the Kate Hooper brought workers from China to work as domestic servants for Antonio M. Rodriguez.

Created Date
1861-06-04

Records for the ship Grey Hound, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Torices y Puente. On this trip, the Grey Hound brought workers from China to work as domestic servants.

Created Date
1861-03-10

Records for the ship Luisita, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with La Alianza and Ferran y Dupierris. Three of these workers were contracted by Fosca y Araoz in Sagua la Grande.

Created Date
1864-07-09

Records for the ship Vasco de Gama, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with La Alianza and Ferran y Dupierris. On this trip, the Vasco de Gama brought six workers from China to work in the countryside for a sugar factory, Aguedita.

Created Date
1864-07-06

Records for the ship Vasco de Gama, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with La Alianza and Ferran y Dupierris. On this trip, the Vasco de Gama brought workers from China to work in the countryside.

Created Date
1864-06-30

Records for the ship Carmencita, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Troncaso, Bustamante y Co.. On this trip, Carmencita brought 123 settlers from China to work. This document grants the Carmencita permission to dock in Havana.

Created Date
1860

Records for the ship Carmencita, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Troncaso Bustamante. The settlers were to be contracted out to other employers upon arrival.

Created Date
1860

Records for the ship Carmencita, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Troncaso Bustamante. The ship was captained by Captain Garcia.

Created Date
1860

Records for the ship Vasco de Gama, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with La Alianza and Ferran y Dupierris. On this trip, Vasco de Gama brought Elisco or An Sang Kio from China to work for Francisco de Layas and Joaquin Diago.

Created Date
1864

Shipping records for a frigate that brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba. These settlers were later contracted by other employers in Sagua la Grande.

Created Date
1873

Shipping records of Torices, Puentes y Co. regarding the ships they contracted to bring Chinese settlers from China to Cuba to work. Includes letters from captains of some of these ships detailing to the government their contracts with Torices, Puente y Co.

Shipping records for the frigates, Live Yankee and Wake, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Torices, Puente y Co. These workers were contracted in Macao. They were to be contracted out to other employers.

Shipping records for the ship the Grey Hound, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with the Asian Company of Havana and Mr. Torices, Puente, Ferran and Dupierris. These workers were to work in the countryside for Antonio Navamete.

Created Date
1861

Shipping records for the ship the Grey Hound, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with the Asian Company of Havana and Mr. Torices, Puente, Ferran and Dupierris. These workers were to work in the countryside for Antonio.

Created Date
1861

Documents pertaining to the import of Chinese settlers to Cuba by the Cuban government and private companies, like the Society of la Alianza y Compania. One ship, a French frigate called Valace, captained by Andre, brought 265 settlers to Havana in one shipment. Many of the settlers were contracted in Macao.

Created Date
1892

Records for the ship Carmelita, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Rita Barbarca a la Lara. On this trip, Carmelita brought settlers from China to work in Matanzas.

Created Date
1861

Shipping records for the ship, the Carmelita, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba. The Carmelita has fulfilled its contract for the shipment of these settlers on the 30th of October, 1852. These settlers were to be contracted by other employers.

Created Date
1860

Records for the ship Emigrante, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Pedro Reinaldo. On this trip, the Emigrante brought six settlers from China to work for Marino Gillado.

Created Date
1865

Records for the ship Vasco de Gama, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with La Alianza. On this trip, the Vasco de Gama brought settlers from China to work for Juan P.

Created Date
1864

Records for the ship Vasco de Gama, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with La Alianza. On this trip, the Vasco de Gama brought settlers from China to work.

Created Date
1864

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

Created Date
1865-03-24

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

Records for the ship Alfonso de Albuquerque, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with La Alianza. On this trip, the Alfonso de Albuquerque brought five settlers from China to work for Pedro Samberto.

Created Date
1864

Records for the ship Grey Hound, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Torices, Puente y Co. On this trip, the Grey Hound brought five settlers from China to work in the countryside.

Created Date
1861

Records for the ship Glessanox, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Jose Playa, an agent for the Hernandez Company. On this trip, the Glessanox brought settlers from China to work. The ship was captained by Capello and docked in Macao before going to Havana.

Created Date
1870

Records for the ship Messenger, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Torices, Puente y Co. On this trip, Messenger brought workers from China to work.

Created Date
1860

This is a list of 87 Chinese settlers of which 86 of them, upon arrival in Cuba, were contracted to work as fieldworkers in Havana by a Cuban businessman named Y. Gasol; the 87th settler on the list was hired by a different person to be a bread baker. The settlers arrived to Cuba aboard a ship called "A. N. Cesard". The Chinese name, Christian name, contract number, origin, and age of each settler were included in the list. March 6, 1866.

Created Date
1866-03-10

This report was written by a member of the local board of health of Havana- Junta Local de Sanidad de la Habana, to a government official regarding the procedures and regulations for ships that arrived into the port of Havana with Chinese settlers on board, and the importance of those procedures. The board member explained that once the ships were docked in the port, the company introducing the settlers was required to provide ship manifests, the settlers' contracts, lists of the settlers who died during the journey and the causes of their deaths, and other documents to support that the …

Created Date
1860-03-14

These documents pertain to the Spanish ship "Manila" that left China with 248 Chinese colonists in March of 1867, and arrived in Havana with 236 Chinese colonists on April 15, 1867. The first document in this collection was the notification that the company that contracted the 248 Chinese colonists to work in Cuba had leased the Spanish ship in February of 1867, and were preparing the ship and crew to leave for Cuba. The subsequent documents are notifications of the ship's departure from China, and it's successive arrival in Cuba. 1867.

Created Date
1867

These documents pertain to the American ship "Norway" that arrived in Havana on March 30, 1860, with around 900 colonists from China. The purpose of these communications were to establish conditions that needed to be met for authorization to be granted for the Chinese settlers to disembark. A list of the passengers, their contracts, and a health inspection had to be completed before any of the settlers could be let off the ship. Ultimately, the final document in this selection reveals that the settlers were eventually let off the ship two days later, and were taken into a police station …

Created Date
1860-03-13

These records pertain to the Spanish ship "Loyola" that left Macao in February 1867 with 372 Chinese settlers, and arrived in Havana on March 11, 1867. The first notice of the leasing of the ship to the company shipping the Chinese settlers was in late December of 1866. Afterwards, the ship set sail in and arrived in Havana, where a small inspection ensued, and the settlers and crew were authorized to disembark.

Created Date
1866-12-29

These documents relate to the French ship "Tamaris" that departed from Macao with 300 Chinese settlers in 1869. The first document is a letter of health that was written in Portuguese and issued by Lucio Augusto da Silva, a doctor, who inspected the conditions on the ship on February 6, 1869, before it departed the next day. He recorded that the ship carried 545 tons and 21 crew members, and the name of the captain was Felipe B. The doctor found the ship to be in a good sanitary condition, and did not speculate or find evidence of any infectious …

Created Date
1869-02-07

List of 258 Chinese settlers contracted in Macao and sent to Cuba transported aboard the ship "Delangle" in January 1867.

Created Date
1867

Contained in this ship manifest is a list of 244 Chinese settlers who were brought to Cuba aboard the ship "Charlotte" in March 1865. The Chinese name, Christian name, contract number, age, origin, occupation, and length of contract of each settler were included in the list.

Created Date
1865

This document pertains to the recruitment and transfer of the eight year contracts of 172 newly arrived Chinese settlers in Cuba. Details regarding the Cuban landlords who received the settlers' contracts are not included in this document. 1866.

Created Date
1866-03-12

Records for the ship Vasco de Gama, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with La Alianza and Ferran y Dupierris. On this trip, the Vasco de Gama brought two settlers from China to work for Jose Campos.

Created Date
1864-04-06

Records for the ship Mina, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with La Alianza. On this trip, the Mina brought settlers from China to work for Jose D. Sanchez Benitez.

Created Date
1866-06-20

Records for the ship Emmanuel, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with La Alianza. On this trip, the Emmanuel brought forty-six settlers from China to work for Ingenio Union.

Created Date
1865-07-13

Records for the ship Mina, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with La Alianza. On this trip, the Mina brought five settlers from China to work for Credito F. Cubano.

Created Date
1866-06-22

Records for the ship Alfonso de Albuquerque, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with La Alianza. On this trip, the Alfonso Albuquerque brought five settlers from China to work for Ingenio America.

Created Date
1864-06-07

Records for the ship Encarnacion, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with La Alianza. On this trip, the Encarnacion brought nine settlers from China to work for Pedro Reinaldo.

Created Date
1865-03-28