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Cuba Commission Report

Cuba Commission Report - Excerpts of The Cuba Commission...

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1 Excerpts of The Cuba Commission Report: A Hidden History of the Chinese in Cuba, The Original English-Language Text of 1876 (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1993). The petition of the hsiu-tsai Hsien Tso-pang ( 洗左邦 ) and 14 others states, that “the foreigners of Macao sent out vicious Chinese in order to kidnap and decoy men and to place these in baracoons and on board of ships from which they cannot escape, chastise them there without restraint, and conveying them against their will to Havana, after removing their queues and changing their clothing, offer them for sale in the men-market. The hsiu-tsai Chen Shao-yen ( 陈少严 ) states in his petition: “I was decoyed here by wicked men.” The petition of Shih Chih-ho ( 施致和 ) and 28 others states, “we were decoyed from Macao to this Spanish island of Cuba.”… Again it was gathered from the 1176 depositions which have been recorded that of those who sailed from Macao Wen Chang-tai ( 文长泰 ) and 65 others were kidnapped, that Tseng-Erh-chi ( 曾二齐 ) and 689 others were decoyed, that Liu A-jui ( 刘阿瑞 ) and 50 others were entrapped into signing contracts in the belief that they were merely doing so in the place of others temporarily absent, that Huang A-mu () and 93 others were the victims of various snares tendered to them after they had gambled and lost, and that Chen A-chi () and 65 others emigrated voluntarily… (pp. 36-7) Of the more than 140,000 Chinese who sailed for Cuba, more than 16,000 died during the voyage… the petition of Li Chao-chun ( 李肇春 )and 165 others states, “when, quitting Macao, we proceeded to sea, we were confined in the hold below; some were even shut up in bamboo cages, or chained to iron posts, and a few were indiscriminately selected and flogged as a means of intimidating all others; whilst we cannot estimate the deaths that, in all, took place, from sickness, blows, hunger, thirst, or from suicide by leaping into the sea.” The petition of Chiu Pi-shan ( 邱碧山 )and 35 others states, “If the master be a good man the sufferings are only those produced by grave maladies, but if his disposition be cruel there is no limit to the ill-usage, and there have been cases when more than half the number on board have died. Ten thousands hardships have to be endured during the voyage of several months.”(p. 42)
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