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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
1832 1961


A contract between a Chinese settler and Jose de Cruz Torrez. The contract was to last for a year and lists the legal requirements of both the employee and the employer.

Created Date
1864-07

A contract between Ro Moore, a Chinese settler and Pedro Reynaldo. The contract was to last for an undisclosed amount of time and lists the legal requirements of both the employee and the employer. Ro Moore did not negotiate or sign the contract as the signature stipulates that someone else signed for him. Signed by Carlos Catalan and Pedro Reynaldo.

Created Date
1858

This is a contract for Feliciano Luisi with Jose de la Portilla. May 1871.

Created Date
1871

A contract between Jose Leon, a Chinese settler, and Jose Quintera. The contract was to last for an undisclosed amount of time and lists the legal requirements of both the employee and the employer.

Created Date
1870

A contract between Tong-Atac, a Chinese settler, and H. de Closmadeuc and Campbell 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. Also features the contract in Chinese.

Contributors
冯, 口得
Created Date
1860-11-19

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 Vong Cari, a Chinese settler, and Tanco Armero, the agent for Limbillo, Montalvo, y Co. The contract was to last for an undisclosed amount of time and lists the legal requirements for both the employee and the employer. Vong Cari did not negotiate or sign the contract as the signature stipulates that someone else signed for him. Signed by N. Tanco Armero and J. de Agustin.

Created Date
1867-09-30

This is a first contract that was signed by Jang, a Chinese settler, in which he agreed to leave China and travel to Cuba to work as an indentured servant for eight years. He signed his contract with Ignacio-Fernandez de Castro of Cadiz.

Created Date
1853-01-11

Relates that Roque, a Chinese settler, was granted permanent residency in Cuba after fulfilling the legal requirements.

Created Date
1863-09-09

This is a list of Chinese settlers who were imprisoned in a particular jail from April to August 1858 in Cienfuegos for running away from their masters and breaking their contracts. These runaways are referred to as "maroons". One was reported as requiring a stay in the hospital while five others were returned to their owners.

Created Date
1858