MATERIAL: Hand-Written/Painted
TYPE: Manuscript
COMPONENTS: 3 manuscripts
ITEM ID: 4498
  • Artwork
  • Artwork
  • Artwork
  • Artwork
  • Artwork

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Proof of Chinese Enslavement in Cuba

DATE
Year: 1868
Decade: 1860s
Century: 19th (1801-1900)

This is without question one of the most dramatic sets of manuscripts on the Chinese in Cuba. The documentation that provides clear evidence that Chinese were enslaved in Cuba.

The story is dramatic and incredible and the main part of the most important 4pg., manuscript reads as follows:
“…as a consequence of the execution of the criminal cause that continued against the Chinese Podofredo and other Chinese for the corporal lesions THEY inflicted on the NEGRO who was Contramayoral* , whose name was Simon, and I direct you sir, the following, that I have the strong desire to verify it to find out to whom belongs the faith in the demise/death of the Chinese Podofredo, who died in the Military Capital of this city on the 29th of May, 1868…”

*(“Mayoral” was the person who worked for the slave owner, to whip beat, chain and punish slaves however they wanted and the “Contramayoral” was the assistant to the Mayoral and he would help the Mayoral mete out punishment – and in this case the Contramayoral was a “negro”, which was very unusual.)

In the end the Chinese Podofredo revolted against the black man who beat him and inflicted “lesions” onto the Contramayoral, but then the Chinese Podofredo died (“obito” = death or death based on failure) and I am unsure as to whether the Chinese man was murdered or ordered executed and died.

In the group is the accompanying Military Hospital document, with Seal of the Hospital, with reference to involvement by the Bishop in this affair.

The third browning (but quite supple) document also refers to the Chinese Godofredo case and is signed by the Mayor.