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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.


Language
Mime Type
  • application/pdf
Date Range
1851 1893


This is an application for permanent residency for Pascual, a Chinese settler. It includes the settler's original contract signed in Macao, a letter of recommendation from a previous owner, stating that he had completed an eight year contract, his cedula or identity card, and a certificate of baptism.

Created Date
1865

Manuel Corp, a Chinese settler, converted to Christianity. Manuel was originally from Macao. In his baptism, Manuel offered his loyalty to the Cuban government and the church in order to eventually receive permanent residency in Cuba, a legal requirement.

Created Date
1871-09-15

A blank contract for employees working with agents Mariano del Pielago and Merino Gelledo. It has two language versions: Spanish and Chinese. It indicates the instructions that the employees should follow.

Burial records for Manuel Corp, originally from Macao. Their records indicate they were baptized into the Catholic church and buried in the general cemetery of Havana.

Created Date
1861-08-14

Burial records for Manuel Corp, originally from Macao. Their records indicate they were baptized into the Catholic church and buried in the general cemetery of Havana.

Created Date
1861

Burial records for Jorge Macao, originally from Macao. Their records indicate he was employed by Benito Nogares when he died and Dr. Victor Hernandez examined Jorge's body after he died.

Created Date
1863

A contract between Vong-Ayon, a Chinese settler, and the Asian Company of Havana run by A. R. Ferran and Rafael R. Torices. The Asian Company of Havana was to bring Vong-Ayon from China to Cuba to work. The contract lists the legal requirements of both the settler and the company. Signed by Cañete y Morales, A. R. Ferran, and J. R. Vargas. Also written in Chinese.

Contributors
黃, 閠
Created Date
1857-11-26

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.

Contributors
鄧, 七

A contract between Telefiro, a Chinese settler, and Luis de Alele. Telefiro was originally from Macao. The contract was to last for six months and lists the legal requirements of both the employee and the employer. Noted that Telefiro completed a contract previously. Telefiro did not negotiate or sign the contract as the signature stipulates that someone else signed for him. Signed by Domingo Sadaña, Andres Mendez, and Jose Ladele.

Created Date
1866-05-20

A contract between Justo, a Chinese immigrant, and Gaspar Vinals. The contract was to last for six months and lists the legal requirements for both the employee and the employer. Justo did not negotiate or sign the contract as the signature stipulates that someone else signed for him. Signed by Jose Lopes Francas, Manuel de la Fuente, and Gaspar Vinals.

Created Date
1871

A contract between Justino Campbell and the government of Cuba. The contract granted Justino Campbell the right to recruit Chinese settlers to come to Cuba to work. Campbell was permitted to use the ship Hoggersbank under Captain Achenback.

Created Date
1866-12-09

A contract between Chan Achan, a Chinese settler, and A. R. Ferran. The contract was to last for an undisclosed amount of time and lists the legal requirements of both the employee and the employer. Signed by A. R. Ferran, J. R. Vargas, and Chan Achan, who signed in Chinese. Also featured in Chinese.

Created Date
1857-10-12

A contract between Asseng, a Chinese settler, and Carlos Flotard. The contract was to last for an undisclosed amount of time and lists the legal requirements of both the employee and the employer. Asseng did not negotiate or sign the contract as the signature stipulates that someone else signed for him. Signed by Jose R. Marquez.

Created Date
1851-10-05

A contract between Chan Quai, a Chinese settler, and N. Tanco Armero, an agent for Lombillo, Montalvo, and Co. The contract was to last for an undisclosed amount of time and lists the legal requirements of both the employee and the employer. Chan Quai did not negotiate or sign the contract as the signature stipulates that someone else signed for him. Signed by A. Tanco Armero.

Created Date
1867-12-17

A contract between Lu, a Chinese settler, and La Alianza. The contract was to last for an undisclosed amount of time and lists the legal requirements of both the employee and the employer. Transferred to Jose M. Paya and then to J. G. Domenech. Lu did not negotiate or sign the contract as the signature stipulates that someone else signed for him. Signed by an agent from La Alianza and the original owner.

Contributors
余, 合
Created Date
1867-03-26

A contract between Felix, a Chinese settler, and Verga y Co. The contract was to last for an undisclosed amount of time and lists the legal requirements of both the employee and the employer. Transferred to Jose W. y Bardenas and then to someone else.

Contributors
余, 成
Created Date
1860-07-26

A contract between Leopoldo, a Chinese settler, and D. Fernando Tuton, an agent for la Compania de Hacendados. The contract was to last for an undisclosed amount of time and lists the legal requirements of both the employee and the employer. Leopoldo did not negotiate or sign the contract as the signature stipulates that someone else signed for him. Signed by the agent and Manuel Mente.

Contributors
林, 士
Created Date
1872-12-05

A contract between Mauricio, a Chinese settler, and A. R. Ferran and Rafael R. Torices. The contract was to last for eight years and lists the legal requirements of both the employee and the employer. Notes the contract was transferred to Filipe de Mena. Signed by A. R. Ferran, J. R. Vargas, and Mauricio, who signed in Chinese. Also the contract is featured in Chinese.

Created Date
1858-03-03

A contract between Chon-Moe, a Chinese settler, and H. de Closmadeuc. The contract was to last for eight years and lists the legal requirements of both the employee and the employer. Noted that Chon-Moe completed a contract with P. Campbell previously.

Contributors
張, 亞
Created Date
1860-09-29

A contract between Damian, a Chinese settler, and Martin de Cardenas y Laya. The contract was to last for six months and lists the legal requirements of both the employee and the employer. Signed by Martin de Cardenas and Damian, who signed in Chinese.

This is a first contract signed by an unknown Chinese settler, in which he agreed to travel to Cuba to work as an indentured servant for eight years.

Contributors
杜, 美
Created Date
1871-11-28

A contract between Vicente, a Chinese settler, and D. Martin de Cardenas y Layas. The contract was to last for six months and lists the legal requirements of both the employee and the employer. Renewal of Vicente's initial labor contract of six months. Signed by Martin de Cardenas y Layas and Vicente, who signed in Chinese.

Created Date
1860

A contract between Lim- Amec, a Chinese settler and Joaquin Barrera. Notes that Lim-Amec completed the contract. Signed by Juan Marquez and Lim Amec, who signed in Chinese.

Created Date
1854-01-23

A contract between Chiong, a Chinese settler, and Domingo de Aldama. The contract was to last for an undisclosed amount of time and lists the legal requirements of both the employee and the employer. Chiong did not negotiate or sign the contract as the signature stipulates that someone else signed for him.

Contributors
葉, 章
Created Date
1864

A contract between Huno Afon, a Chinese settler and A. P. Achenbach. The contract was to last for an undisclosed amount of time and lists the legal requirements of both the employee and the employer.

Contributors
吳, 邦
Created Date
1856-11-15

A contract between Chiong Seug, a Chinese settler, and R. Calderon, the agent of La Alianza. The contract was to last for an undisclosed amount of time and lists the legal requirements of both the employee and the employer. Chiong Sung did not negotiate or sign the contract as the signature stipulates that someone else signed for him. Upon reaching Havana, this contract was ceded to Domenach and Co.

Created Date
1867-03-26

A contract between Nam-Acao, a Chinese settler, and L. Manuel. The contract was to last for an undisclosed amount of time and lists the legal requirements of both the employee and the employer. Contract was transferred to Joel Charles Caro.

Created Date
1859-03-30

A contract between Jose, a Chinese settler, and Martin de Cardenas y Layas. The contract was to last for six months and lists the legal requirements of both the employee and the employer. Notes thatJose was required to enter this contract to correct his deficiencies in his previous work contracts, and for being disobedient.

Created Date
1860

A contract between Dionisio, a Chinese settler, and Jose Sanchez. The contract was to last for two years and lists the legal requirements of both the employee and the employer. Notes that Dionisio was required to enter this contract to correct his deficiencies his previous work contracts, and for being disobedient. Signed by Jose Sanchez and Dionisio, who signed in Chinese.

Created Date
1861-06-10

A contract between Lam Som, a Chinese settler, and La Alianza. The contract was to last for an undisclosed amount of time and lists the legal requirements of both the employee and the employer. Notes this contract was then transferred to José Paya and then, to J. G. Domenech. He did not negotiate or sign the contract as the signature stipulates that someone else signed for him. Signed by Jose M.

Created Date
1867-03-10

A contract between, Vong Ahony, a Chinese settler and Torices y Co. Notes the contract was transferred to Carmen Segueira. Vong Ahony did not negotiate or sign the contract as the signature stipulates that someone else signed for him. Signed by L. Manuel and Jose.

Created Date
1861-06-14

A contract between Afno, a Chinese settler, and F. Valdez. The contract was to last for an undisclosed amount of time and lists the legal requirements of both the employee and the employer. Notes the contract was transferred to Jose Gomez. Afno did not negotiate or sign the contract as the signature stipulates that someone else signed for him. Signed by H. Velez.

Created Date
1858-01-18

This is a first labor contract that was signed by Aman- a Chinese settler, in which he agreed to relocate to Cuba to work as an indentured servant for eight years. Originally signed 1855. El Bircantin Paquita was the agent for the original contract. On the second page, Julian a Pulueta states that this contract was transferred to Ramon de Gueregiaga for reasons unstated on April 18, 1856.

Created Date
1855-12-07

This is a first contract that was signed by Jang, a Chinese settler, in which he agreed to leave China and travel to Cuba to work as an indentured servant for eight years. He signed his contract with Ignacio-Fernandez de Castro of Cadiz.

Created Date
1853-01-11

This is a first contract signed by a Chinese settler, in which he agreed to travel to Cuba to work as an indentured servant for eight years. Macao

Created Date
1871-12-02

A contract between Llong Aueng, a Chinese settler and A. R. Ferran and Rafael R. Torices. The contract was to last for an undisclosed amount of time and lists the legal requirements of both the employee and the employer. Also featured contract in Chinese.

Created Date
1858-03-13

A contract between Chan Qui, a Chinese settler, and Tuton y Hijo and the agents of La Alianza. The contract was to last for an undisclosed amount of time and lists the legal requirements for both the employee and the employer. Chan Qui did not negotiate or sign the contract as the signature stipulates that someone else signed for him. Signed by the agents of Tuton y Hijo. Also features the contract in Chinese.

Created Date
1871-12-02

A contract between Vong Cari, a Chinese settler, and Tanco Armero, the agent for Limbillo, Montalvo, y Co. The contract was to last for an undisclosed amount of time and lists the legal requirements for both the employee and the employer. Vong Cari did not negotiate or sign the contract as the signature stipulates that someone else signed for him. Signed by N. Tanco Armero and J. de Agustin.

Created Date
1867-09-30

A contract between Zuan-Tae, a Chinese settler, and Ignacio Fernandes de Castro. The contract was to last for an undisclosed amount of time and lists the legal requirements of both the employee and the employer. Zuan-Tae did not negotiate or sign the contract as the signature stipulates that someone else signed for him. Signed by Nicario Canete y Moral. Also features the contract in Chinese.

Created Date
1863-09-22

A contract between Lin Kun Mui or Manuel, a Chinese settler, and R. Calderon, the agent of La Alianza y Co. The contract was to last for an undisclosed amount of time and lists the legal requirements of both the employee and the employer. Notes the contract was transferred to Jose Manuel Palla. Lin Kun Mui did not negotiate or sign the contract as the signature stipulates that someone else signed for him.

Created Date
1867-03-18

A contract between Chiu Achu, a Chinese settler, and Peredo Machado y Co. The contract was to last for an undisclosed amount of time and lists the legal requirements of both the employee and the employer.

Contributors
趙, 才
Created Date
1858-03-16

A contract between Tam-afsoi, a Chinese settler, and J. Campbell. The contract was to last for an undisclosed amount of time and lists the legal requirements of both the employee and the employer.

Contributors
谭, 瑞
Created Date
1860-12-22

A contract between a Chinese settler and La Alianza. The contract was to last for an undisclosed amount of time and lists the legal requirements of both the employee and the employer.

Contributors
鄭, 清
Created Date
1871-11-29

A contract between Tong-Atac, a Chinese settler, and H. de Closmadeuc and Campbell y Co. The contract was to last for an undisclosed amount of time and lists the legal requirements of both the employee and the employer. Also features the contract in Chinese.

Contributors
冯, 口得
Created Date
1860-11-19

A contract between Yao Afon, a Chinese settler, and J. Campbell. The contract was to last for an undisclosed amount of time. Yao Afon signed in Chinese.

Contributors
邱, 芳
Created Date
1858-10-31

A contract between Si-Quin, a Chinese settler, and H. de Cloumadeuc. The contract was to last for an undisclosed amount of time and lists the legal requirements of both the employee and the employer. Noted that Si-Quin completed a contract with P. Campbell previously. Si-Quin did not negotiate or sign the contract as the signature stipulates that someone else signed for him. Signed by L. Miguel.

Contributors
李, 春
Created Date
1860-12-21

A contract between Yldefonio, a Chinese settler, and Pedro Guibas. The contract was to last for six months and lists the legal requirements of both the employee and the employer. Yldefonio was originally from Macao. Yldefonio did not negotiate or sign the contract as the signature stipulates that someone else signed for him. Signed by Jose Lopez Francas, Guillermo Gomez, and Pedro Luibus.

Created Date
1865-07-05

A contract between Timoteo, a Chinese settler, and Manuel Paredes. The contract was to last for a year and lists the legal requirements of both the employee and the employer. Signed by the governor, Manuel Paredes, and two witnesses.

Created Date
1869-10-12

A contract between Antonio, a Chinese settler, and Elias Lolano y Garcia. Antonio was originally from Macao. Noted that Antonio completed a contract with Juan Oxaca previously. Antonio did not negotiate or sign the contract as the signature stipulates that someone else signed for him. Signed by the governor, Elias Lolano y Garcia, and two witnesses.

A contract between Modesto and Gabriel Vivo y Fuentes. The contract was to last for a year and lists the legal requirements of both the employee and the employer. He was originally from Macao.

Created Date
1869