Skip to main content

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
1860 1873


Records of business deals between Troncaso, Bustamanta y Co and other companies, specifically relating to the contracting of Chinese workers or moving settlers from the employment of one company to another. Many of these settlers were between 19 and 40 years of age.

Created Date
1860

This is the first contract between Joaquin, a Chinese settler, and Francisco Carrera for the period of one year. 1860.

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.

Created Date
1864-06-05

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 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
1864-06-30

Records for the ship Oldenburg Ammerland, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba under contract with Y. M. Zangroniz y Co. On this trip, the Oldenburg Ammerland brought fourteen from China to work for the sugar plantation "La Palma". 1866

Created Date
1866

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

A contract between Domingo, a Chinese settler, and Pedro J. Garcia. The contract was to last for a year and lists the legal requirements of both the employee and the employer. Notes that Domingo completed a contract with Pedro J. Garcia previously. Contract signed by Pedro J. Garcia, Domingo, and the governor. Signed in Chinese.

Created Date
1868

A contract between Carlos, a Chinese immigrant and Jose Oteza. The contract was to last for a year and lists the legal requirements of both the employee and the employer. Contract signed by Jose Manuel Gonzales, Carlos, and the governor.

Created Date
1868