Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Mariel boatlift?

The Mariel boatlift was a mass exodus of Cubans who departed from Cuba's Mariel Harbor for the United States between April 15 and October 31, 1980.

What is this website for?

This website is an effort by The Miami Herald to document the entry of more than 125,000 individuals who arrived in the United States during the Mariel boatlift.

How do I find myself or someone I know?

To search for a person, click the button labeled 'passenger search' in the menu bar. This will take you to our search form. Once there, simply enter the name of the person you're search for and click search.

How do I find a boat?

To search for a boat, click the button labeled 'boat search' in the menu bar. This will take you to our boat search form. Once there, you can search by the name of the boat and/or the boat's month of arrival.

How do I add a person to a boat?

If you know the name of the boat a person arrived on, you can add the person to the boat.

To do this, search for the person you want to add to a boat. Once you've located them, click their name to go to their profile page.

On the profile page, you can search for the boat they arrived on. Once you've found it, just click 'add person to this boat,' and we'll take care of the rest.

A person is listed on the wrong boat. What do I do?

If you're sure that a person is associated with the wrong boat, go to that person's profile page and click 'remove from this boat.' This will disassociate the person from the boat.

What are memories and how do I add mine?

If you'd like to tell the story of your arrival -- or a family member's arrival -- during Mariel, simply find the boat on which you or your family member arrived and click 'add your memory.'

You can then enter your name, email and what you remember about the boat. This information is shared publicly.

It is currently not possible to add your memories to people. Please contact the site's administrator if you think this feature would be useful.

I've found information on the website that is incorrect. What can I do?

Please contact the site's administrator if you discover an error.

I am the captain for one of the boats. Can I contribute?

If you remember the names of your passengers, you're welcome to add them to your boat. In addition, please feel free to add your memory of the voyage.