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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.




List of Chinese settlers who ran away from their owners and were later captured. After capture, they were held in the Municipal Slave Deposit in Santa Maria del Rosario. Their names, ages, and nationality are listed along with the dates of their escape and capture.

Created Date
1858

List of Chinese settlers who ran away from their owners and were later captured. After capture, they were held in the Municipal Slave Deposit in Santa Maria del Rosario. Their names, ages, and nationality are listed along with the dates of their escape and capture.

Created Date
1858-03-01

An identity card for Manuel, originally from Macao. Manuel was twenty-four years old when this card was issued. He worked for the Society of Immigration for eight years.

Created Date
1860

An identity card, or cedula, for Manuel, originally from Macao. Manuel was twenty-four years old when this card was issued.

Created Date
1860-05-17

Records for the ship Serafina, which brought Chinese settlers from China to Cuba. On this trip, the Serafina brought several settlers from China to work and some Spaniards and a Portuguese interpreter. Signed by Manuel Esmerendis, Javier A. de Saldez, and a Chinese settler, who signed in Chinese.

Created Date
1860-05-30

A complaint filed by Francisco Orta in the name of three Chinese settlers, Francisco, Manuel, and Pablo concerning their contracts.

Created Date
1861

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

Created Date
1863-10-09

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

A contract between Julian, a Chinese settler, and Valentin de la Villa. The contract was to last for a year and lists the legal requirements of both the employee and the employer. Julian did not negotiate or sign the contract as the signature stipulates that someone else signed for him. Signed by Manuel, Valentin de la Villa, Jose Lope Francas, Guillermo Manuel Gomez.

Created Date
1865-07-22

An identity card, or cedula, for Manuel, originally from Macao. Manuel was twenty four years old when this card was issued. He had an eight year contract with the Society of Immigration.

Created Date
1866-05-07