Cuba Chinese Cemetery Barrio Chino

Havana’s Chinese cemetery Barrio Chino opened in the late 1800s and is the oldest cemetery in the Americas. There was once a flourishing Chinese community in Cuba but now there are very few and they are almost forgotten. The Chinese culture has been in deterioration for around 50 years, since the Chinese Cubans started leaving after the Cuban Revolution. 

They first arrived in 1847 as labourers and over 150,000 Chinese were working in Cuba but after the revolution, businesses were seized and they fled. The cemetery contains many histories of the Chinese descendants within; the earlier graves are small and plain but newer ones are larger and more magnificent with statues. There was a problem with running out of space so larger tombs were created and the remains were placed in smaller boxes in catacombs beneath. This has been happening since 1945 and there are now over 2000 boxes at the cemetery. 

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