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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.


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This is a photograph of a Bride on her wedding day, holding her bouquet.

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This is a photograph of a groom on his wedding day.

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This is a photograph of the groomsmen drinking after a toast.

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This is a photograph of a toast between the groomsmen. The Groom and the man of honor are drinking from martini glasses, while the other two appear to be drinking rum.

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This is aphotgraph of a wedding. The families of the groom and Bride are both pictured here. There are 6 children pictured, 8 women, and 6 men.

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This is a photograph of a Bride and Groom on their wedding day.

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Photograph of a Groom and Bride on their wedding day.

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Photograph of a wedding entoruage. Pictured from left to right is the bride's maid, the bride, the groom, and the best man.

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This is a photograph of a couple that has just been married.

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Photograph of a Wedding reception. The table for the Groomsmen and Bridesmaids is infront, while the table for the Groom's family is to its side. The groomsmen and bridesmaids are drinking a dark liquid, presumably alcohol. They are round tables, set in a family style dining fashion.