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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.


An identity card, or cedula, for Santiago Auy, originally from Canton. He was 26 years old when this card was issued.

Created Date
1880

This is a neighborhood identity card (cedula) that belonged to a Chinese settler in Cuba. When this cedula was issued, the settler was 27 years old, a fieldworker, and in the process of completing his initial eight year labor contract as an indentured servant. The names of some of his contract owners are also listed on the cedula. Havana, 1861.

Created Date
1861-11-02

Neighborhood ID card (a cedula) that belonged to Benito Ramos- a Chinese settler.

Created Date
1871-02-16

Justino Campbell transferred his contracts with several Chinese settlers in Cardenas and Matanzas to the Superior Civil Government so that these workers may obtain their cedulas or personal identity cards.

Created Date
1861-05-08

This is an identification card for Alejandro Eng and issued by the Center for Labor. Undated.

This is an identification card for Jorge Eng, a Cuban national. Undated.

An identity card for an unknown man. This card does not allow him to travel outside of Cuba.

Created Date
1960-07-05

An identity card, or cedula, for Higenio.

Created Date
1880-01-10