MATERIAL: Hand-Written/Painted
TYPE: Letter
ITEM ID: 3470

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Letters on Pagan Religions in Cuba

DATE
Century: 19th (1801-1900)

A letter that describes the information given to the writer by a Chinese immigrant who had been baptized and offered information about pagan groups in Cuba. The information includes and describes the differences between Catholics and pagans that existed among the minority groups on the island. This list of pagans also included anyone who was not baptized in the Catholic church because they worshiped false idols. Specifically, the main concern is not the existence of paganism in Cuba, but an attempt by some pagans to mix the two together, combining their “books”. The letter suggests that the government should maintain records of each family and their religious distinction in order to maintain order in a Catholic state. The writer of the letter also suggests that priests and bishops have to enforce the dominance of Catholicism in their regions and push for conversion, especially among the Chinese immigrant populations. The three other responses are from priests or bishops agreeing to maintain better record keeping in their books that list births, baptisms, and marriages in their parishes, specifically writing the dates of each event and the ethnic backgrounds of the people involved.
Documento firmado por el Capitan General Francisco Lersundi sobre el bautismo de unos colonos chinos. 1866.