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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
1806 2015

A contract between Fang-Achat, a Chinese settler, and L. Miguel Gonzalez. The contract does not state how long it was supposed to last, but it lists the legal requirements of both the employee and the employer. Contract signed by L. Miguel Gonzalez and two others, but not the settler. Also features the contract in Chinese.

鄧, 七

The cedula or identity card for Cesares, a Chinese immigrant working in Cuba. He worked for Jesus Alalli.

An election roll from the Association of the Chinese settlers' Palma Soriano delegation of the Society of Instruction and Recreation. It lists the President, Vice President, Secretary, Vice Secretary, Treasurer, Vice Treasurer, and speakers. Sent to the Provincial Government of Oriente.

This is a certificate from the executive secretary of the Municipal Director of Education. This certificate was for Hector Fund for completing his class evaluations.

A letter from Francisco Changsoy and Jorge F. Hands, the President and the Secretary of the Delegation of Guantanamo. It lists the President, Vice President, Secretary, the Vice Secretary, Treasurer, and Vice Treasurer.

Handwritten Chinese language lessons Text Book

The membership certificate of the Chinese Consolidated Benevolent Association in Cuba (Zhonghua zonggonghui 古巴中華縂工會) This certificate belongs to Hang Zhifu 黃質父 with a Spanish name “Wong Man.” He was born on May 16th, 1899. According to the record, it seems that he married twice: His first wife was a Chinese who stayed in Taishan 台山 of Guangdong Province. His second wife was a local woman who lived with him and they had at least two kids: Jose and Maria. His wife’s name might be Liolida Gil.