The Philippines: Past and Present (vol. 1 of 2)
Dean C. Worcester

Part 3 out of 10

making such a proposal in the first instance was inexcusable.

Before he could terminate the negotiations which followed he was called
away, and turned this matter, together with other unfinished business,
over to his successor, General E. S. Otis.

On August 31, 1898, the latter official wrote to Aguinaldo as

"_General Aguinaldo, Bacoor_:

"Referring to promise made by General Merritt to reply to your
letter of August 27 within four days, I desire to state that he was
unexpectedly ordered away and had not opportunity to reply. Being
unacquainted with the situation, I must take time to inform myself
before answering, which I will do at the earliest opportunity.


On September 8 General Otis wrote Aguinaldo a long letter fully
discussing the whole situation in the light of the complete information
which he had meanwhile obtained. Since so much has been made of this
incident by Blount and others, I invite attention to the following
extracts from General Otis's letter, which embody a fair and judicial
statement of the conditions which existed:--

"You designate certain lines within the suburbs of the city of Manila,
to which you promise to retire your troops, and name as conditions
precedent: First, protection to your shipping by the United States
Navy, and the free navigation of your vessels within the waters in
United States occupation; second, restitution to your forces of all
positions which are now occupied by your troops, in the event that
treaty stipulations between the United States and Spain surrender
to the last-named government the territory occupied by the former;
and thirdly, that United States troops now occupying positions beyond
the lines you name shall retire within the same.

"A discussion of your proposition to hold, jointly, with the United
States Government, the city of Manila, involves consideration of some
of the other concessions you desire to be made, and to that I will
at once refer. I wish to present the matter, in the first instance,
in its legal aspect, although, from remarks contained in former
correspondence, I am of the opinion that you are fully aware how
untenable the proposition is. The United States and Spain were and are
belligerent parties to a war, and were so recognized by the civilized
world. In the course of events the entire city of Manila, then in
full possession of Spanish forces, was surrendered to the first-named
belligerent power. The articles of agreement and capitulation gave the
United States Government full occupancy of the city and defences of
Manila, and that Government obligated itself to insure the safety of
the lives and property of the inhabitants of the city to the best of
its ability. By all the laws of war and all international precedents
the United States authority over Manila and its defences is full and
supreme, and it cannot escape the obligations which it has assumed.

* * * * *

"But conceding, as you do, the strictly legal right of my Government to
hold and administer the affairs of the city of Manila and its suburbs
(I thus conclude from expressions contained in former correspondence
and from my appreciation of your intellectual attainments), you
base your proposition--a joint occupation--upon supposed equitable
grounds, referring to the sacrifices your troops have made and the
assistance they have rendered the American forces in the capture
of Manila. It is well known they have made personal sacrifices,
endured great hardships, and have rendered aid. But is it forgotten
that my Government has swept the Spanish navy from the seas of both
hemispheres; sent back to Spain the Spanish army and navy forces,
recently embarked for your destruction, and the secure holding of
the Philippine possessions; that since May 1 last its navy has held
the city of Manila at its mercy, but out of consideration of humanity
refused to bombard it, preferring to send troops to demand surrender,
and thereby preserve the lives and property of the inhabitants? Is it
forgotten that the destruction of the Spanish navy and the retention
of Spanish armed men in its European possessions has opened up to you
the ports of the Island of Luzon and held Spain helpless to meet its
refractory subjects?

* * * * *

"Apart from all legal and equitable considerations, and those
having their origin in personally conceived ideas of justice, I
wish respectfully to call your attention to the impracticability of
maintaining a joint occupation of Manila and its suburbs, and in this
I know that I shall have the approval of your excellent judgment. It
would be extremely difficult to prevent friction between our respective
forces, which might result in unfortunate consequences, labor as we
may for continued harmonious relations. Located in close proximity,
irresponsible members of our organizations, by careless or impertinent
action, might be the means of inciting grave disturbances; and in
this connection I call to your attention the recent shooting affair
at Cavite, which still requires investigation. There might also arise
conflict of authority between our subordinate officers. Even now,
within precincts in entire actual possession of our troops, I find
that permits are given to citizens, who are styled local presidents,
to make arrests, to carry arms, etc., in violation of our instructions
and authority, and that several cases of kidnapping have taken
place. In pursuance of our obligations to maintain, in so far as
we can, domestic tranquillity, our officers have arrested suspected
parties, and they have asserted (with what element of truth I know
not) that the insurgent forces are the offenders. I have declined
to accept their statements, as I prefer to believe the contrary,
although it would appear that officers connected with those forces
have issued the permits to which I allude. Such interference with
our administration of civil affairs must eventually result in conflict.

"... And here permit me to remark upon a view of the subject you have
advocated in support of the plea for dual occupation of the city's
suburbs. Your forces, you say in substance, should have a share in
the booty resulting from the conquest of the city, on account of
hardships endured and assistance rendered. The facts on which you
base your conclusion granted, your conclusion, under the rules of
war which are binding on my Government, does not follow, for it has
never recognized the existence of spoils of war, denominated 'booty,'
as have many European governments. No enemy's property of any kind,
public or private, can be seized, claimed by, or awarded to, any
of its officers or men, and should they attempt to appropriate any
of it for their individual benefit, they would be very severely
punished through military tribunals, on which have been conferred by
law very sweeping jurisdiction. The enemy's money and property (all
that is not necessary to be expended in administering local affairs
in the enemy's territory) must be preserved for final arbitrament
or settlement by and between the supreme authorities of the nations
concerned. My troops cannot acquire booty nor any individual benefit
by reason of the capture of an enemy's territory. I make this comment,
believing that you hold erroneous opinions in respect to individual
advantages which occupation bestows.

"I request your indulgence while I briefly consider the concessions
you ask us to make as conditions precedent to the retirement of your
forces to the lines indicated by your note of the 27th ultimo.

"The first is: Protection to your shipping and free navigation to
your vessels. Neither the extent of protection nor the limit of free
navigation you request is understood. Certainly you could not mean
protection on the high seas, or in the ports not in the rightful
possession of the United States. That, as you are fully aware, could
only be effected by treaty, or guarantee, following international
recognition of the belligerent rights of the Philippine revolutionary
government. While the existing armistice continues, the United
States are in rightful possession, in so far as the navigable waters
of the Philippine Islands are concerned, only of the bay of Manila
and its navigable tributaries. Within the same all vessels of trade
and commerce and the war vessels of recognized national powers sail
freely as long as the sovereignty of my Government is not assailed
nor the peace of the locality threatened. In this respect, whatever
concessions are extended by way of relaxation of trade restrictions,
incident to war, to the citizens of these islands will be extended
to all alike, and discrimination in this regard is neither intended
nor permitted. Admiral Dewey exercises supervision over all naval
matters, and they are in no way related to the duties conferred
upon me by law. Nor would it avail should I seek his consent for
greater latitude of action, for even if disposed to grant special
concessions he could not do so, and I doubt if the supreme authority
of my Government could now, under the prevailing truce with Spain,
invest him with the requisite powers to do so and at the same time
preserve its international obligations.

"The second concession named by you is restitution of positions in the
city of Manila to your forces, in case the treaty of peace remands to
Spain the territory surrendered under the late capitulatory articles;
and the third and last is a promise to retire our troops within the
lines indicated by you, as the lines on which you desire your troops
to remain permanently. These propositions, having a kindred nature,
may be considered together, and, indeed, have already been impliedly
answered. From previous statements of facts and logical conclusions
made and stated in this communication, concerning the nature of the
obligations resting on the United States with regard to the territory
to which they have the legal right of possession under contracting
articles with Spain, it is evident that neither in law or morals
can the concessions be made. I would be powerless to grant them in
any aspect of the case, being nothing more than an agent to carry
out the instructions of the executive head of my Government and not
being vested with discretionary power to determine matters of such
moment. In the present instance I am not only powerless to accede to
your request, but have been strictly enjoined by my Government, mindful
of its international promises and national honour, which it has never
broken nor sacrificed, not to accede joint occupation of the city and
suburbs of Manila and am directed specially to preserve the peace and
protect persons and property within the territory surrendered under
the terms of the Spanish capitulation. These mandates must be obeyed.

"Thus have I endeavoured with all candor and sincerity, holding nothing
in reserve, to place before you the situation as understood by me,
and I doubt not by the Republic which I represent. I have not been
instructed as to what policy the United States intends to pursue in
regard to its legitimate holdings here, and hence I am unable to give
you any information on the subject. That it will have a care and labor
conscientiously for the welfare of your people I sincerely believe. It
remains for you, beneficiaries of its sacrifices, to adopt a course
of action which will manifest your good intentions and show to the
world the principles which actuate your proceedings.

* * * * *

"It only remains for me to respectfully notify you that I am compelled
by my instructions to direct that your armed forces evacuate the
entire city of Manila, including its suburbs and defences, and that
I shall be obliged to take action with that end in view within a very
short space of time should you decline to comply with my Government's
demands; and I hereby serve notice on you that unless your troops are
withdrawn beyond the line of the city's defences before Thursday,
the 15th instant, I shall be obliged to resort to forcible action,
and that my Government will hold you responsible for any unfortunate
consequences which may ensue.

* * * * *

"In conclusion, I beg to inform you that I have conferred freely
with Admiral Dewey upon the contents of this communication and am
delegated by him to state that he fully approves of the same in all
respects; that the commands of our Government compel us to act as
herein indicated, and that between our respective forces there will
be unanimity and complete concert of action."

This calm and temperate discussion of the situation, coupled with
the firm statement of intention with which it closed, produced a
decided effect on Aguinaldo. Concerning the events to which it led,
General Otis has made this statement:--

"On September 13, a commission sent by Aguinaldo and consisting
of three members, one of whom was the treasurer and another the
attorney-general of the insurgent government, called for the purpose
of discussing the subject of my letter of the 8th. They asked me to
withdraw it and simply request in writing that the insurgent troops
retire to the line designated by General Merritt, which I refused
to do, stating that unless they withdrew as directed we would be
obliged to resort to force. They then asked that I withdraw the
letter and issue a request unaccompanied by any threat to use force,
as Aguinaldo was fearful that he would be unable to remove his troops
upon a demand. To which I replied that the letter of the 8th instant
would stand. They then said that as the demands of that letter must
remain unchanged, the insurgents would withdraw as directed therein,
but that if I would express in writing a simple request to Aguinaldo
to withdraw to the lines which I designated--something which he
could show to the troops and induce them to think that he was simply
acting upon a request from these headquarters--he would probably be
able to retire his men without much difficulty; that, of course,
they themselves understood the direction to withdraw, which would
be obeyed, and thereupon repeated their desire to obtain a note of
request, whereupon I furnished them with the following:--

"'_Office U. S. Military Governor in the_

"'_Philippine Islands_,

"'_Manila_, P. I., September 13, 1898.

"'_The Commanding General of the Philippine Forces_:

"'_Sir_: Referring to my communication of September 8, I have the
honour to inform you that I have had a most agreeable conversation
with certain gentlemen who are in the interests of your revolutionary
government upon the matters therein contained. We have discussed
at length the complications now existing, which will exist, and will
doubtless increase, while our troops continue to occupy jointly certain
districts of the city of Manila. I have urged upon them the necessity
of the withdrawal of your troops in order that the friendly relations
which have always been maintained by and between them and the forces
of the United States Government may be perpetuated. I am sure that
the gentlemen fully appreciate my sentiments and will clearly report
them to you. May I ask you to patiently listen to their report of
our conversation?

"'It is my desire that our friendly intercourse and mutual amicable
relations be continued; that they be not jeopardized if we can by
consistent action avoid it, and such, I am certain, is the desire of
yourself and associates.

"'May I ask, therefore, that you withdraw your troops from Manila?

"'Permit me to add in conclusion that I have that confidence in your
ability and patriotism which will lead you to accede to this request.

"'I am, with great respect, your most obedient servant,

(Signed) "'_E. S. Otis_,

"'Major-General, U. S. V.,

"'United States Military Governor in the Philippines.'

"In reply to which, on the 16th, the following was received:--

"'_Malolos, Bulacan_, September 16, 1898.

"'_The Commanding General of the American Forces_:

"'_My Dear Sir_: Referring to your esteemed communication, dated
the 13th instant, I have the honour to inform you that I have given
appropriate orders that my troops should abandon their most advanced
positions within some of the suburbs, and that they should retire to
points where contact with yours would be more difficult, in order to
avoid all occasion for conflict.

"'I hope that by these presents you will be fully convinced of my
constant desire to preserve amicable relations with the American
forces, even at the risk of sacrificing a part of the confidence
placed in my government by the Philippine people.

"'A consideration of my many occupations will serve to excuse me for
not having answered with the promptness desired.

"'Your very respectful servant,

(Signed) "'_Emilio Aguinaldo_.'

"On the evening of the 15th the armed insurgent organizations withdrew
from the city and all of its suburbs, as acknowledged by their leaders,
excepting from one small outlying district. This certain agents
of Aguinaldo asked on the previous day to be permitted to retain
for a short time, on the plea that the general officer in command
[180] would not obey instructions, and they proposed to remove his
men gradually by organizations and thereafter to punish him for his
disobedience. The withdrawal was effected adroitly, as the insurgents
marched out in excellent spirits, cheering the American troops." [181]

I have given the facts thus fully for the reason that this is the one
instance I have found in which a promise was made, fortunately in the
form of an offer which was not accepted, and then withdrawn. It has
seemed to me that the reasons why General Merritt should never have
made it, and why General Otis could not possibly have renewed it,
should be fully set forth.

On September 7, 1898, General Otis had cabled to Washington that
Admiral Dewey and he considered conditions critical, and that
the number of armed Insurgents in the city was large and rapidly
increasing. He stated that on the 8th he would send a notification
to Aguinaldo that unless the latter's troops were withdrawn beyond
the line of the suburbs of the cry before September 15 he would be
obliged to resort to forcible action and that the United States would
hold Aguinaldo responsible for any unfortunate consequences which
might ensue.

Aguinaldo still hoped to obtain recognition of his government by the
United States, but did not consider such recognition probable, and
pushed preparations to attack if a favorable opportunity should offer.

Before occupying ourselves with these preparations, let us briefly
review the results of our investigations as to Insurgent cooeperation
with the American forces up to this time.

Taylor has made the following excellent summary of the case:--

"Up to this time Aguinaldo had continued a desultory warfare with the
Spanish troops in Manila. That none of his attacks were very serious
is shown from the Spanish reports of casualties; but although he had
failed to secure the surrender of the city to himself, he had kept
its garrison occupied and within their works. The American force on
land was now strong enough to begin offensive operations. So far the
relations between the Americans and Aguinaldo had not been really
friendly. They were in his way, and yet he could not break with them,
for he hoped to use them for the attainment of the designs which
he had by this time frankly declared. The Americans had listened to
these declarations, and had not answered them, nor was it possible to
answer them. The American forces were there under the instructions
of the President to make war on Spain and to establish a military
government in the Philippines. Aguinaldo had declared himself a
dictator and the Philippines independent. To have recognized him in
his civil capacity, to have dealt with him in his civil capacity,
would have meant a recognition of his government by the military
commander in the field--a thing impossible and unlawful. Officers of
the United States forces are not empowered to recognize governments;
that function is reserved to the President of the United States;
and in this case he, in his orders to the Secretary of War, dated
May 19, copies of which were forwarded to General Merritt for his
guidance, informed him that the army of occupation was sent to the
Philippines 'for the twofold purpose of completing the reduction of
the Spanish power in that quarter and of giving order and security
to the islands while in the possession of the United States.' These
instructions contemplated the establishment of a military government
in the archipelago by military officials of the United States.

* * * * *

"it is true that in spite of the date of these instructions General
Merritt in San Francisco had received no copy of them on August 28,
three days after the departure of General Anderson, and what that
officer knew of them could only have been what General Merritt
remembered of the contents of an unsigned copy of them shown him
at the White House, but they were in accordance with the practice
of the United States Government in occupying conquered territory,
that practice General Anderson well knew, and his relations with
Aguinaldo were guided by it.

* * * * *

"It has been claimed that Aguinaldo and his followers received the
impression at this time from their conversation with American officers
that the United States would undoubtedly recognize the independence of
the Philippines, and that the cooperation of the insurgents was due to
this impression. There was no cooperation. That he attempted in vain to
secure the surrender of Manila to himself was not cooperation. That he
refrained from attacking the Americans and occasionally permitted them
to be furnished supplies, for which they paid, was not cooperation. The
fact that for a time their plans and his plans were parallel does
not mean cooperation. Aguinaldo was forced by the exigencies of
the situation, by the necessity of strengthening his hold upon the
people, by the necessities of his operations against the Spaniards,
to make Spaniards and natives alike believe that all that he did was
with the aid of the Americans by whom he would be supported in all
his acts. He needed their support, and if he could not obtain that
he needed the appearance of their support for the attainment of his
ends; and this he was forced to purchase by compliance, or apparent
compliance, with their demands. But his compliance with them, as
all American officers serving there well knew, was never willing,
was never complete, and was never given except under pressure. It
is true that writers upon the subject, speaking with the confidence
which is born of insufficient and incomplete information, assure
their readers that any government but that of the United States, any
colonial administrators but Americans, would have been able to obtain
the hearty cooperation of Aguinaldo and his followers by judicious
concessions to them at this time. The only concession which would have
obtained that hearty cooperation would have been the recognition of
the independence of the Philippines under a United States protectorate,
of Aguinaldo clothed with the plenitude of the powers of the Katipunan
as dictator, and a promise to promptly withdraw from the islands. This
promise the Government of the United States could not make. Until the
ratification of a treaty of peace with Spain the insurgents of the
Philippine Islands were rebellious subjects of Spain, and with them,
except as fighting men, no relations could be had.

* * * * *

"No report of operations or returns of strength were rendered by
Aguinaldo at this or any other time to any American commander, and
no American commander ever rendered such returns to him. At the time
of General Merritt's arrival, and until Manila was occupied by the
Americans, the insurgents and United States troops were united solely
by the fact that they had Manila as a common objective. Conditions
were such that the Americans, in order to obtain its surrender, had to
avoid doing anything which might cause the insurgents to attack them
and perhaps make terms with Spain; while Aguinaldo and his followers,
in order to accomplish the surrender of Manila to themselves, had
to maintain such relations with the Americans as would induce the
Spaniards to believe that their fleet was at his disposal, [182]
and also such apparent harmony and cooperation with them in the
execution of their plans that the recalcitrant among the Filipinos
would be forced to believe that the Americans would in all ways use
their forces to support Aguinaldo in the attainment of his desires.

"General Merritt saw this and the necessity for immediately taking such
steps as would lead to his occupation of Manila. With the arrival of
the third expedition he was able to pass through the insurgent lines
between Camp Dewey and Manila, for he had sufficient force to accept
no refusal from Aguinaldo.

"In his report he said that the insurgents had obtained positions
of investment opposite the Spanish lines along their full extent,
and that on the bay front their lines ran within 800 yards of San
Antonio Abad. The approaches to the beach and village of Pasay were
in their possession.

"'This anomalous state of affairs, namely, having a line of
quasi-hostile native troops between our forces and the Spanish
position, was, of course, very objectionable, but it was difficult to
deal with owing to the peculiar conditions of our relations with the
insurgents.... As General Aguinaldo did not visit me on my arrival
nor offer his services as a subordinate military leader, and as my
instructions from the President fully contemplated the occupation of
the islands by the American land forces, and stated that "the powers of
the military occupant are absolute and supreme and immediately operate
upon the political condition of the inhabitants," I did not consider it
wise to hold any direct communication with the insurgent leader until
I should be in possession of the city of Manila, especially as I would
not until then be in a position to issue a proclamation and enforce
my authority in the event that his pretensions should clash with my
designs. For these reasons the preparations for the attack on the city
were pressed and the military operations conducted without reference
to the situation of the insurgent forces. The wisdom of this course
was subsequently fully established by the fact that when the troops
at my command carried the Spanish entrenchments, extending from the
sea to the Pasay road on the extreme Spanish right, we were under no
obligation, by prearranged plans of the mutual attack, to turn to the
right and clear the front still held by the insurgents, but were able
to move forward at once and occupy the city and the suburbs.'" [183]

All that the Insurgents and the Americans ever had in common was an
enemy. They each fought that enemy in their own way. There was no
cooeperation. On the part of the Insurgents there was treachery. I
will submit further evidence of this fact.


The Premeditated Insurgent Attack

It will be remembered that the minutes of the session of the Hong
Kong junta at which Aguinaldo reported the result of his negotiations
with Pratt and received his instructions relative to the trip to
Manila, recorded the fact that there would be no better occasion for
the expeditionary forces "to arm themselves at the expense of the
Americans," and that provided with arms the Filipino people would
be able to oppose themselves to the United States and combat their
demands if they attempted to colonize the country. [184]

The possible, if not the probable, desirability of attacking the
United States troops was, it is evident, clearly foreseen from the
beginning. Active preparations for doing this now soon began.

Although Insurgent officers in full uniform freely visited Manila at
all times, Aguinaldo wrote on October 1 to his commander in Laguna
Province that he must not permit Americans there without passes. He
was to get rid of them civilly, but he was to keep them out and inform
all authorities there of his instructions.

On August 24 an American soldier was killed and others were wounded in
Cavite by Insurgent troops who fired from behind. An Insurgent officer
in Cavite at the time reported on his record of services that he--

"took part in the movement against the Americans on the afternoon of
the 24th of August, under the orders of the commander of the troops
and the adjutant of the post."

This shows that the movement was ordered, but the Insurgents promptly
realized that it was ill advised.

On August 28 General Llanera was reported to be preparing for
operations against the Americans. He was ordered to suspend his
preparations. The same day General P. Mercado Rizal, commanding in
Laguna Province, wrote Mabini asking whether they were to consider
the Americans as their allies or their enemies. He wanted to know
whether the war was to stop or continue becoming more furious. This
not because he desired to ask questions about the secrets of the
government, but because he wished to prepare the minds of the people
for the future. Mabini's answer has not been found.

We have already noted that on August 8 Fernando Acevedo wrote General
Pio del Pilar recommending that he attack and annihilate the American
troops; that on August 10 Pilar wrote Aguinaldo suggesting that
the Americans be attacked, and that on August 17 Aguinaldo stated"
"The conflict is coming sooner or later." [185]

At this time Sandico entered the service of the Americans as an
interpreter and acted as a spy, endeavouring to keep his people fully
informed relative to the plans and acts of his employers. Incidentally
he endeavoured to convince the latter that the barbarities really
committed by Insurgent officers and troops in Manila were perpetrated
by enemies of the Insurgent cause who wished to discredit it.

In a letter dated September 21, 1898, Apacible says that the conflict
will come sooner or later and asks Aguinaldo if it would not be
better for them to provoke it before the Americans concentrate their
troops. [186]

On September 10 General Garcia reported to Aguinaldo that on the
previous night the Americans had attempted to push back his line
at San Lazaro, and that morning had concentrated and penetrated the
Insurgent territory, making a reconnaissance through the fields about
Sampaloc. Aguinaldo put an endorsement on this communication saying
that he had long since ordered that the Insurgent line should not
be passed. He instructed Garcia to throw troops in front of the
Americans at Sampaloc, and order them to leave, and to warn the
bolo men. Obviously, little more was needed to provoke an Insurgent
attack. [187]

An unsigned draft of an order in Aguinaldo's handwriting dated Malolos,
September 13 (?), 1898, [188] shows how tense was the situation
while the question of withdrawal of the Insurgent forces from the
city of Manila was under consideration. It contains instructions
for General Pio del Pilar, General P. Garcia and General Noriel or
Colonel Cailles. Their purpose is hardly open to doubt.

General Pio del Pilar was directed:--

"To have a detachment posted in the interval from the branch of the
river of Paco in a northerly direction to the bridge and so on up
to the Pasig river in the direction of Pandacan, the river serving
as a line until the suburb of Panque is reached which will be under
our jurisdiction. Proceed to execute this order on its receipt,
posting detachments where they are necessary and trenches will be
made without loss of time working day and night. Do not rest for by
doing so we may lose the opportunity; beg of the troops to assist
in the formation of intrenchments. Matters have a bad aspect, we
especially expect something Wednesday and Thursday, the 15th and
16th of this month. The danger is imminent on the mentioned days,
also in the time that follows.

"Keep strict vigilance at all hours. In case you receive orders to
leave that place, do not do so on any account without my orders,
happen what may....

"Concentrate all your forces in Santa Ana before the day arrives.

"Warn your soldiers against firing at random as the Spaniards did,
if possible have them calculate the number of their antagonists and
how much ammunition there is in comparison with the number of the
attacking force, in fact, there are occasions when each shot fired
kills as many as four men.

"I hope you will see to the execution of these instructions and that
you will maintain the honour of the Philippines by your courage and
in no way permit your rights to be trampled underfoot." [189]

General Garcia was instructed as follows:--

"On Wednesday, the 14th of this month, you will post detachments in
the points indicated by lines on the enclosed plan. On receipt of this
and as soon as you learn its contents, proceed secretly to determine
the most suitable places to post detachments and immediately post
our troops and have intrenchments made employing day and night in
this work. Beg this of our soldiers." [190]

The instructions to Noriel or Cailles read as follows:--

"At eight o'clock in the morning of Wednesday, the 14th, withdraw your
command from the town of Malate as indicated on the enclosed plan,
from the bridge in Singalong and in a straight line from there to
the branch of the river in Paco will be the line of our jurisdiction
even though we may not be of one mind in the matter. On receipt
of this proceed to determine the most suitable places to post our
troops even if they are not supplied with batteries; on posting the
detachments give instructions to have intrenchments made immediately
without resting, especially on the days of the 15th and 16th. Since
affairs have a serious aspect, do not lose vigilance and be on the
alert at all times....

"Concentrate all the forces and have a call to arms in Cavite so that
all the troops may be in Pasay on Wednesday night.

"In case the Americans attempt to order you out do not leave your
posts, happen what may, but exercise prudence and be prepared leaving
them to give the provocation. Answer them that you have no instructions
given you with regard to what they ask." [191]

Obviously the maintenance of peace at this time hung by a very slender
thread. On September 14 the governor of Cavite telegraphed Aguinaldo
as follows:--

"Most urgent. I desire to know from you the result of the
ultimatum. Advise me if we must prepare our troops for action
to-morrow. I await a reply." [192]

But war was not to begin at this time. On September 23 Bray wrote
to Aguinaldo advising him to maintain a defensive attitude until
the result of the negotiations at Paris should become known, giving
way to the Americans and not showing his teeth. He could take the
offensive later if advisable and should have little difficulty in
settling accounts with the American soldiers. [193]

Bray suggested the possibility of an alliance between the American and
the Spanish soldiers if a conflict should arise before the departure
of the latter. [194]

Meanwhile preparations for the attack progressed. During September,
Sandico wrote Aguinaldo suggesting the urgent necessity of reorganizing
the "masons" and the Katipunan, [195] and that all be furnished with
knives, to be kept hidden so that they might be "ready for any event."

In spite of efforts to keep the Insurgent soldiers in hand, feeling
among them ran high, and they wanted to fight. [196] On November 30,
1898, General Mascardo telegraphed from San Fernando to Aguinaldo
asking if he might begin firing in order to prevent the American
troops from disembarking, and Aguinaldo promptly answered in the
affirmative. [197]

On December 5 Malvar telegraphed from Lipa that according to a despatch
from Batangas, American divers were working unceasingly and that a
subordinate had ordered that they be fired on if they attempted to
land. Aguinaldo replied that he did not mind their working at sea, but
that they must not be allowed to land under any circumstances. [198]

On December 6 Sandico telegraphed Aguinaldo as follows:--

"The difficulty of last night at the San Juan picket with the American
troops has been adjusted without prejudice. Our preparations ought
to continue. Awaiting orders." [199]

San Juan was where the firing commenced on February 4, 1899.

On December 9 Cailles wired Aguinaldo as follows:--

"Report to you that there are 3000 Americans in front of our position
at Singalong. I do not know what they wish; if they enter Pineda I
open fire." [200]

By this time the Insurgents had made up their minds that the
Americans, who had been bearing their insults in silence, were
cowards. Aguinaldo's indorsement on this telegram reads:--

"Answered: Nevertheless the 3000 American soldiers are few against
my Colonel and his 300 soldiers, and I believe you have more than
that number. E.A., Dec. 12, 1898." [201]

Relative to the insults which were at this time showered upon
Americans, Taylor has made the following statement: [202]--

"Fortune had been good to Aguinaldo and his associates in the
eight months during which the United States had prevented Spain from
relieving her beleaguered garrisons in the Philippines, and she might
still be kind. The men about Aguinaldo who had risen farthest and
fastest could not endure the thought of having to accept subordinate
positions in a government not directed by themselves. The halberdiers
at the door of the palace of the president saluted them as the
halberdiers at the doorway of his lordship the governor-general in
Manila had struck the marble steps with their halberds at the coming
of the Spanish generals. They swaggered down the streets of Malolos,
clashing their swords behind them, and they knew that if they won,
the Philippines would be divided into fiefs which they, as dukes and
marquises, would hold in feudal tenure from a Malay potentate. They
were confident. They held Luzon. They held the people. They had no
intention of returning to office stools or to the life of outlaws and
hunted men. The United States force in Manila was small and America
was far. It was true that they might have to fight for the prize
which they had seized, but the military leaders about Aguinaldo were
confident of winning in case they fought. They believed the Americans
were afraid of them and would be easily beaten. American soldiers had
been seized and had been insulted by the followers of Aguinaldo and
no resort had been made to force. The Americans had been ordered to
avoid bringing on an engagement and had obeyed. It is also probable
that many of the insults to which they had been subjected were not
appreciated by them. A tall soldier from western America paid no
attention to the insults hurled at him in a language which he did not
understand. And yet the small excited Filipinos might retire feeling
that the American had tamely submitted to insult worse than a blow."

By the middle of December, Aguinaldo had placed in position in the
vicinity of Manila all of the field guns in his possession.

The Treaty of Paris was signed on December 10. It provided for the
termination of Spanish sovereignty in the Philippines. This was what
the Insurgents had been waiting for, and thereafter things moved
rapidly. It is obvious that an attack was definitely planned for
at this time, for on December 21, Commandant F. E. Rey telegraphed
Aguinaldo that the second chief of the second zone of Manila had
directed him to assist by entering that city as soon as they opened
fire against the American troops. [203]

On the following day Cailles reported that he had occupied blockhouse
No. 12, which was within the American lines, and added the following
significant statement:--

"The order of yesterday was, on hearing the first shots from Santa
Ana, for my whole force to hurl themselves on the American line of
trenches, and to follow the living to Manila. The dead can lie with
the dead. Yesterday we were content waiting for the arming of the
San Quintin." [204]

San Quintin's Day was the anniversary of the Sicilian vespers, the
massacre of the French in Sicily in 1268. Obviously the Insurgents
were planning something similar for Manila.

For some reason the attack was not made as planned, but there was
no intention of abandoning it. Within fifteen days of January 1 some
40,000 Filipinos left Manila. Why? On January 7, Aguinaldo wrote to
Senor Benito Legarda at Manila, saying:--

"I beg you to leave Manila with your family and come here to Malolos,
but not because I wish to frighten you--I merely wish to warn you for
your satisfaction, although it is not yet the day or the week." [205]

Many details of the plan of attack have come into our
possession. Doctor Manuel Xeres Burgos wrote Aguinaldo during January
relative to a plan for an uprising of the prisoners in Bilibid Prison,
saying that it should by all means come "before the movement is begun
anywhere else," and calling attention to the necessity of stationing
men to prevent the American soldiers near by in the Zorilla theatre
from coming to the rescue. On the back of this letter there is a
sketch plan showing where bolo men were to be stationed, ready to
attack these soldiers. [206]

In his message to Congress dated January 1, 1899, Aguinaldo said:--

"I consider arguments unnecessary in support of the proposed
amendments, every one knows that our newborn Republic now has to
fight for its existence against giants in ambition and in power." [207]

An unsigned letter addressed to Apacible on January 4, 1899, contains
the following statement:--

"It appears that conflict with the Americans is imminent
and inevitable. Several of their vessels with thousands of
soldiers commanded by General Miller were sent to Iloilo on
December 20th last to take that port together with the whole
of Visayas and Mindanao." [208]

On January 4 the following significant telegram was sent out:--

"Circular Telegram from the Secretary of the Interior to Provincial
Presidents, wherever there may be Telegraphic Service, to be
communicated to the Local Chiefs of each Town.

"_Malolos_, January 4, 1899, 9.35 A.M.

"To the Provincial President of the Province of Pangasinan:

"Hasten the preparation of all the towns in order to oppose the
American invasion. See that all the inhabitants prepare their bolos
and daggers; also that in each street and barrio national militia
is organized, each six of whom should be commanded by a corporal,
each thirteen by a sergeant, each twenty-six by a second lieutenant,
each fifty-two by a first lieutenant, and each one hundred and four
by a captain, directing that the soldiers of the national militia
elect their own officers, informing all that upon our attitude depends
our salvation.

_Lingayen_, January 4, 1899."

There is a note thereon which reads:--

"Communicate this to all of the local chiefs, and to the commanding

(Signed by initials which are illegible, but evidently those of the
Provincial President.) [209]

On January 5, 1899, Aguinaldo issued a proclamation which contains
the following statement:--

"The said generals accepted my concessions in favor of peace and
friendship as indications of weakness. Thus it is, that with rising
ambition, they ordered forces to Iloilo on December 26, with the
purpose of acquiring for themselves the title of conquerors of that
portion of the Philippine Islands occupied by my govermnent.

* * * * *

"My government cannot remain indifferent in view of such a violent and
aggressive seizure of a portion of its territory by a nation which has
arrogated to itself the title, 'champion of oppressed nations.' Thus
it is that my government is ready to open hostilities if the American
troops attempt to take forcible possession of the Visayan Islands. I
announce these rights before the world, in order that the conscience
of mankind may pronounce its infallible verdict as to who are the
true oppressors of nations and the tormentors of human kind.

"Upon their heads be all the blood which may be shed." [210]

Three days later this proclamation, which was rather dangerously like
a declaration of war, was reissued with a significant change in the
last one of the passages quoted, the words "attempt to take forcible
possession of any part of the territory submitted to its jurisdiction"
being substituted for the words "attempt to take forcible possession
of the Visayan Islands."

On January 8, 1899, at 9.40 P.M., Sandico telegraphed Aguinaldo
as follows:--

"_Note_.--In consequence of the orders of General Rios to his officers,
as soon as the Filipino attack begins the Americans should be driven
into the Intramuros district and the Walled city should be set on
fire." [211]

Preparations for the attack, which was to begin inside the city
of Manila, were now rapidly pushed to conclusion. I quote Taylor's
excellent summary of them:--

"After Aguinaldo's proclamation of January 5 the number of
organizations charged with an attack within the city increased rapidly
and it is possible that those which had been formed during Spanish rule
had never been disbanded. Sandico's clubs for athletic exercises and
mutual improvement formed a nucleus for these bodies and the directing
boards of the popular committees took up the work of recruiting, while
some of the members became officers of the militia or sandatahan. On
January 6 the commander of militia in Trozo, Manila, reported that
1130 soldiers had been enrolled by the popular committee. On January
7 Bonifacio Arevalo forwarded to the head of the central committee a
list of the officers of the battalion which had just been organized
in Sampaloc for the defence of their liberties. Apparently about the
same time J. Limjap submitted to Sandico a project for arming the
prisoners in Bilibid Prison with the arms of the American soldiers
quartered in the Zorrilla Theatre across the street. He said:--

"'Jacinto Limjap having been proclaimed commander of the volunteers
of the penitentiary, I ask you to authorize the creation of a
disciplinary battalion and the provisional appointments of officers
for 600 sandatahan, or militia, ready to provide themselves by force
with the American rifles in the Zorrilla Theatre.'

"He followed by a statement of the officers desired. It was not
difficult for him to obtain volunteers there to rob, to burn, to
rape and to murder. These were the crimes for which they were serving
sentences. The political prisoners had been released....

"On January 18 Sandico approved of the officers for the first battalion
organized by the committees of Sampaloc; on January 27 he approved
those of the second battalion. By January 22 two battalions had
been organized in Quiapo. At least one regiment of eight companies
was raised in Binondo, for on January 23 its commander forwarded a
roll of the officers to Aguinaldo for his approval.... On January 25
T. Sandico, at Malolos, submitted for approval the names of a number of
officers of the territorial militia in the city of Manila. On January
30, 1899, a roll of four companies just organized in Malate was
forwarded approved by T. Sandico, and on the same day the committee
of Trozo, Manila, applied to T. Sandico for permission to recruit a
body for the defence of the country. The regiment of 'Armas Blancas'
had already been raised in Tondo and Binondo. It was in existence
there in December, 1898, and may have been originally organized to act
against Spain. On February 2 all officers of the territorial militia
in Manila reported at Caloocan, in accordance with orders of Sandico,
for the purpose of receiving their commissions and taking the oath to
the flag. A man who took part in this ceremony wrote that a multitude
of men were present in uniform, and that the oath was administered
by Gen. Pantaleon Garcia. There is no reason for believing that this
is a complete statement of sandatahan organized in Manila by the end
of January, and yet this statement gives a force of at least 6330
men. General Otis said that this force had been reported to him as
being 10,000 men. It is probably true that only a small number of
them had rifles; but armed with long knives and daggers they could
have inflicted much damage in a sudden night attack in the narrow
and badly lighted streets of Manila. On January 9, 1899, Aguinaldo
wrote his instructions for the sandatahan of Manila. Members of this
body were to enter the houses of the American officers on the pretext
of bringing them presents. Once in they were to kill. The sentinels
at the gates of the barracks were to be approached by men dressed as
women and killed. The gates of the barracks held and as many officers
as possible treacherously murdered, the sandatahan were to rise
throughout the city, and by attacking in the rear the United States
troops on the outer line were to aid in opening a way for Aguinaldo's
force. To further increase the confusion and perhaps to punish the
natives who had not joined them, the sandatahan were to fire the city.

* * * * *

"It is a fair deduction from Luna's orders for an uprising in Manila,
from Aguinaldo's instructions for the sandatahan, from other documents
among the papers of the insurgents and from what was done in Manila
on February 22 that Aguinaldo and his advisers about the middle of
January, 1899, drew up a plan of attack upon Manila which would, if
carried out, have inflicted a severe blow upon the Americans. It was
not carried out, but that was not the fault of Aguinaldo or of Luna.

"It is true that the instructions were general; but that particular
instructions were given by Aguinaldo himself for the murder of General
Otis is shown by his note on the back of a document presented to
him. [212]

"... And then there was nothing abhorrent to Aguinaldo and the men
about him in beginning a war by the murder of the commanding general
on the other side.

* * * * *

"... Aguinaldo and all his followers have declared that on February
4 the Americans attacked the unsuspecting Filipinos who were using
their utmost efforts to avoid a war. And yet here in Aguinaldo's
own handwriting is the record of the fact that on January 10, 1899,
he ordered the murder of the American commander.

"The attack which Aguinaldo was preparing to deliver upon and in Manila
was not to be a mere raid such as the bandits of Cavite were in the
habit of making upon the defenceless towns. The plan was a piece of
calculated savagery in which murder and outrage were considered means
to accomplish a purpose. The servants were to kill their employers;
organized bands, dressed in the dress of civilians, living in the
city of Manila under the government of the Americans, in many cases
employed by the Americans, were to suddenly fall upon the barracks
of the American soldiers and massacre the inmates; all Americans in
the streets were to be killed, the city was to be fired and its loot
was to be the reward of loyalty to Aguinaldo. If this plan had been
carried out no white man and no white woman would have escaped. The
reinforcements from the United States would have arrived to find
only the smoking ruins of Manila. Buencamino had warned General
Augustin what the fate of Manila would be if taken by a horde of
Indians drunk with victory. That fate was now deliberately planned
for the city. Aguinaldo planned to occupy the capital not as it had
been occupied by the Americans. He planned to take it as Count Tilly
took Magdeburg.

"The authors of this plan were not savages. Mabini, Sandico, and Luna,
Asiatics educated in European schools, were men of trained and subtle
minds. With them cruelty and assassination was not a matter of savage
impulse but of deliberate calculation; with them assassination was
employed as an effective addition to political propaganda, and murder
as an ultimate resource in political manoeuvres." [213]

Some portions of Aguinaldo's instructions to the _sandatahan_ are
particularly worthy of perpetuation, as they illustrate his ideas
as to the conduct which should be observed by cultured, patriotic,
honourable and very humane men, who were not cruel:--

"_Art_. 3. The chief of those who go to attack the barracks
should send in first four men with a good present for the American
commander. Immediately after will follow four others who will make a
pretence of looking for the same officer for some reason and a larger
group shall be concealed in the corners or houses in order to aid
the other groups at the first signal. This wherever it is possible
at the moment of attack.

"_Art_. 4. They should not, prior to the attack, look at the Americans
in a threatening manner. To the contrary, the attack on the barracks
by the sandatahan should be a complete surprise and with decision
and courage. One should go alone in advance in order to kill the
sentinel. In order to deceive the sentinel one of them should dress
as a woman and must take great care that the sentinel is not able
to discharge his piece, thus calling the attention of those in the
barracks. This will enable his companions who are approaching to
assist in the general attack.

"_Art_. 5. At the moment of the attack the sandatahan should not
attempt to secure rifles from their dead enemies, but shall pursue,
slashing right and left with bolos until the Americans surrender,
and after there remains no enemy who can injure them, they may take
the rifles in one hand and the ammunition in the other.

"_Art_. 6. The officers shall take care that on the tops of the
houses along the streets where the American forces shall pass there
will be placed four to six men, who shall be prepared with stones,
timbers, red-hot iron, heavy furniture, as well as boiling water,
oil and molasses, rags soaked in coal oil ready to be lighted
and thrown down, and any other hard and heavy objects that they
can throw on the passing American troops. At the same time in the
lower parts of the houses will be concealed the sandatahan, who will
attack immediately. Great care should be taken not to throw glass in
the streets, as the greater part of our soldiers go barefooted. On
these houses there will, if possible, be arranged, in addition to
the objects to be thrown down, a number of the sandatahan, in order
to cover a retreat or to follow up a rout of the enemy's column,
so that we may be sure of the destruction of all the opposing forces.

"_Art_. 7. All Filipinos, real defenders of their country, should live
on the alert to assist simultaneously the inside attack at the very
moment that they note the first movement in whatever barrio or suburb,
having assurance that all the troops that surround Manila will proceed
without delay to force the enemy's line and unite themselves with their
brothers in the city. With such a general movement, so firm and decided
against the Americans, the combat is sure to be a short one, and I
charge and order that the persons and goods of all foreigners shall
be respected and that the American prisoners shall be treated well.

* * * * *

"_Art_. 9. In addition to the instructions given in paragraph 6, there
shall be in the houses vessels filled with boiling water, tallow,
molasses and other liquids, which shall be thrown as bombs on the
Americans who pass in front of their houses, or they can make use of
syringes or tubes of bamboo. In these houses shall be the sandatahan
who shall hurl the liquids that shall be passed to them by the women
and children.

"_Art_. 10. In place of bolos or daggers, if they do not possess the
same, the sandatahan can provide themselves with lances and arrows
with long sharp heads, and these should be shot with great force
in order that they may penetrate well into the bodies of the enemy,
and these should be so made that in withdrawal from the body the head
will remain in the flesh.

* * * * *

"_Art_. 12.... Neither will you forget your sacred oath and immaculate
banner; nor will you forget the promises made by me to the civilized
nations, whom I have assured that we Filipinos are not savages, nor
thieves, nor assassins, nor are we cruel, but on the contrary, that we
are men of culture and patriotism, honourable and very humane." [214]

Aguinaldo enjoined order on his subordinates. [215]

The Filipinos were now ready to assume the offensive, but desired, if
possible, to provoke the Americans into firing the first shot. They
made no secret of their desire for conflict, but increased their
hostile demonstrations and pushed their lines forward into forbidden
territory. Their attitude is well illustrated by the following extract
from a telegram sent by Colonel Cailles to Aguinaldo on January 10,

"Most urgent. An American interpreter has come to tell me to withdraw
our forces in Maytubig fifty paces. I shall not draw back a step, and
in place of withdrawing, I shall advance a little farther. He brings
a letter from his general, in which he speaks to me as a friend. I
said that from the day I knew that Maquinley (McKinley) opposed our
independence I did not want any dealings with any American. War, war,
is what we want. The Americans after this speech went off pale." [216]

Aguinaldo approved the hostile attitude of Cailles, for there is a
reply in his handwriting which reads:--

"I approve and applaud what you have done with the Americans,
and zeal and valour always, also my beloved officers and soldiers
there. I believe that they are playing us until the arrival of their
reinforcements, but I shall send an ultimatum and remain always on
the alert.--E. A. Jan. 10, 1899." [217]

On this same day Aguinaldo commissioned Feliciano Cruz and Severino
Quitiongco to assassinate General Otis. [218]

On January 13 Noriel and Cailles telegraphed Aguinaldo as follows:--

"We desire to know results of ultimatum which you mention in your
telegram, and we also wish to know what reward our Government is
arranging for the forces that will be able first to enter Manila."

This telegram is endorsed in Aguinaldo's handwriting:

"As to the contents of your telegram, those who will be the heroes
will have as their rewards a large quantity of money, extraordinary
rewards, promotions, crosses of Biak-na-bato, Marquis of Malate,
Ermita, Count of Manila, etc., besides the congratulations of our
idolizing country on account of their being patriotic, and more,
if they capture the regiments with their generals, and, if possible,
the chief of them all who represents our future enemies in Manila,
which (lot?) falls to you, or, better said, to General Noriel and
Colonel Cailles.

"The ultimatum has not been sent, but it will be within a few days.

(Signed) "E. A.

"_Malolos_, Jan. 14, 1899." [219]

On January 14, 1899, the people at Aparri shouted: "Death to the
Americans," and held a review to celebrate the rupture of friendly
relations with the United States. [220]

At this time Aguinaldo had a dream about a victorious attack upon
Manila and telegraphed it to some of his officers. General Garcia
replied from Caloocan on January 17 that the dream would come true
as soon as the conflict with the Americans began. [221]

In January 21, 1899, Aguinaldo was still not quite ready, and ordered
that the Filipino soldiers in the walled city keep on good terms with
the Americans, in order to deceive them, "since the hoped-for moment
has not yet arrived." [222]

The Insurgents grew surer and surer that the Americans were cowards,
[223] and openly boasted that when the attack began they would drive
them into the sea.

On January 21 General Otis wrote to Admiral Dewey that:--

"The insurgents will not now permit us to cross their lines and
have been very insulting to our officers, calling to them that very
shortly they will give us battle. My best information is that they
have fully determined to attack both outside and within the city
before our additional troops arrive, and the least spark may start
a conflagration." [224]

As the date of the proposed attack drew near, the work of strengthening
the Insurgent positions around Manila was pushed with all possible
speed. [225]

About the middle of January General Otis stationed the First Nebraska
Regiment upon the high ground at Santa Mesa for sanitary reasons. Of
conditions at this time, and of the circumstances leading to the
actual outbreak of hostilities Taylor says:--

"During the latter part of January General Otis was informed on
good insurgent authority that the insurgents meditated an attack
upon those troops, and he was advised to remove them, as in their
exposed position they would kill them all. General MacArthur, under
whose command the regiment was, placed two guns in position there,
as it was fully expected that the insurgents would direct their attack
upon that point, as in fact they did. On February 4, 1899, the tents
of the regiment covered the ridge, and its outposts extended along
the San Juan River, a small stream which formed part of the line of
delimitation between the Americans and the insurgents.

"For some days before the outbreak of hostilities the pressure of the
insurgents was constant along this position, so constant indeed that
in the light of subsequent events it indicated a premeditated purpose
on the part of some one in the insurgent army to force a collision at
that point. On February 2 General MacArthur, commanding the Second
Division of the Eighth Army Corps, wrote to the commanding general
of the Filipino troops in the third zone in front of him that--

"'An armed party from your command now occupies the village in front of
blockhouse No. 7, at a point considerably more than a hundred yards
on my side of the line, and is very active in exhibiting hostile
intentions. This party must be withdrawn to your side of the line at
once. From this date if the line is crossed by your men with arms in
their hands they must be regarded as subject to such action as I may
deem necessary.'

"Colonel San Miguel, who commanded at San Juan del Monte, replied
upon the receipt of this communication that the action of his troops
was foreign to his wishes and that he would give immediate orders
for them to retire. At about half past 8 on the night of February 4 a
small insurgent patrol entered the territory within the American lines
at blockhouse No. 7 and advanced to the little village of Santol in
front of an outpost of the Nebraska regiment. This was the same point
from which the insurgents had been compelled to retire on February
2. An American outpost challenged, and then as the insurgent patrol
continued to advance the sentinel fired, whereupon the insurgent
patrol retired to blockhouse No. 7, from which fire was immediately
opened upon the Americans. This fire spread rapidly down the American
and insurgent lines and both forces at once sprang to arms." [226]

General Otis's account of the opening of active hostilities follows:--

"On the night of February 2 they sent in a strong detachment to draw
the fire of our outposts, which took up a position immediately in
front and within a few yards of the same. The outpost was strengthened
by a few of our men, who silently bore their taunts and abuse the
entire night. This was reported to me by General MacArthur, whom I
directed to communicate with the officer in command of the insurgent
troops concerned. His prepared letter was shown me and approved,
and the reply received was all that could be desired. However, the
agreement was ignored by the insurgents and on the evening of February
4 another demonstration was made on one of our small outposts, which
occupied a retired position at least 150 yards within the line which
had been mutually agreed upon, an insurgent approaching the picket
and refusing to halt or answer when challenged. The result was that
our picket discharged his piece, when the insurgent troops near Santa
Mesa opened a spirited fire on our troops there stationed.

"The insurgents had thus succeeded in drawing the fire of a small
outpost, which they had evidently labored with all their ingenuity
to accomplish, in order to justify in some way their premeditated
attack. It is not believed that the chief insurgent leaders wished to
open hostilities at this time, as they were not completely prepared to
assume the initiative. They desired two or three days more to perfect
their arrangements, but the zeal of their army brought on the crisis
which anticipated their premeditated action. They could not have
delayed long, however, for it was their object to force an issue
before American troops, then en route, could arrive in Manila." [227]

Thus began the Insurgent attack, so long and so carefully planned
for. We learn from the Insurgent records that the shot of the American
sentry missed its mark. There was no reason why it should have provoked
a hot return fire, but it did.

The result of the ensuing combat was not at all what the Insurgents
had anticipated. The Americans did not drive very well. It was but a
short time before they themselves were routed and driven from their

Aguinaldo of course promptly advanced the claim that his troops had
been wantonly attacked. The plain fact is that the Insurgent patrol in
question deliberately drew the fire of the American sentry, and this
was just as much an act of war as was the firing of the shot. Whether
the patrol was acting under proper orders from higher authority is
not definitely known.

In this connection the following telegram sent by Captain Zialcita
from Santa Ana on February 4, 1899, at 9.55 P.M., to Major Gray,
San Juan del Monte, is highly interesting:

"I received the telegram forwarded from Malolos. General Ricarte
is not here. I believe (that if the) Americans open fire we shall
attack. Will ask instructions (of) Malolos." [228]

This looks as if Zialcita at least knew that something was to be done
to draw the American fire.

Aguinaldo's first statement relative to the opening of hostilities
is embodied in a general order dated Malolos, February 4, 1899,
and reads in part as follows:--

"Nine o'clock P.M., this date, I received from Caloocan station a
message communicated to me that the American forces, without prior
notification or any just motive, attacked our camp at San Juan del
Monte and our forces garrisoning the blockhouses around the outskirts
of Manila, causing losses among our soldiers, who in view of this
unexpected aggression and of the decided attack of the aggressors,
were obliged to defend themselves until the firing became general
all along the line.

"No one can deplore more than I this rupture of hostilities. I
have a clear conscience that I have endeavoured to avoid it at all
costs, using all my efforts to preserve friendship with the army
of occupation, even at the cost of not a few humiliations and many
sacrificed rights.

* * * * *

"... I order and command:--

"1. Peace and friendly relations between the Philippine forces and
the American forces of occupation are broken, and the latter will be
treated as enemies, with the limits prescribed by the laws of war.

"2. American soldiers who may be captured by the Philippine forces
will be treated as prisoners of war.

"3. This proclamation shall be communicated to the accredited consuls
of Manila, and to congress, in order that it may accord the suspension
of the constitutional guarantees and the resulting declaration of
war." [229]

Aguinaldo's protestations relative to his efforts to avoid hostilities
are absurd, in view of his own instructions concerning the attack to
be made simultaneously within and without the city of Manila.

There is other correspondence which throws light on the situation which
existed immediately prior to the outbreak of hostilities. On January
25, 1899, Agoncillo cabled from Washington to Apacible in Hongkong:
"Recommend you await beginning American aggression, justifying our
conduct nations." [230]

Apacible apparently did not take this view of the matter, for on
January 31 he wrote to Aguinaldo that the Senate in Washington would
take final vote upon the treaty of peace between the United States
and Spain on February 6, and said:--

"It is urgently necessary for America to answer us immediately before
the ratification of the treaty. A conflict after the ratification of
the treaty would be unfavorable to us in public opinion." [231]

Obviously this letter might be interpreted as a recommendation
that hostilities begin before February 6 if America did not answer
meanwhile. It was evidently well understood in Hongkong that
Aguinaldo's receipt of Apacible's letter might cause war to begin,
for on February 3, 1899, Bray, anticipating the outbreak of hostilities
of the following day, cabled Senator Hoar at Washington as follows:--

"Receive caution news hostilities Manila discredited here denied
Filipino circles supposed political move influence vote Senate to-day
any ease insignificant skirmish due intentional provocation.

"_Bray_." [232]

The extracts from the Insurgent records above quoted leave no escape
from the conclusion that the outbreak of hostilities which occurred on
February 4, 1899, had been carefully prepared for and was deliberately
precipitated by the Filipinos themselves.

Blount says:--

"It would be simply wooden-headed to affirm that they ever expected
to succeed in a war with us." [233]

It may have been wooden-headed for the Filipinos to expect this, but
expect it they certainly did. We have seen how they held their soldiers
in check until after Spain had been ousted from the Philippines by
the Treaty of Paris as they had originally planned to do. It now only
remained to carry out the balance of their original plan to get rid
of the Americans in one way or another.

General Otis states that "when Aguinaldo had completed his preparations
for attack he prepared the outlines of his declaration of war, the
full text of which was published at Malolos on the evening, and very
shortly after, hostilities began. This declaration was circulated in
Manila on the morning of February 5." [234]

The Insurgents brought down upon themselves the punishment which they
received on February 4 and 5.

Blount has stated [235] that if the resolutions of Senator Bacon
introduced on January 11, 1899, had passed, we never should have had
any war with the Filipinos. The resolutions in question concluded

"That the United States hereby disclaim any disposition or intention
to exercise sovereignty, jurisdiction, or control over said islands
except for the pacification thereof, and assert their determination
when an independent government shall have been duly erected therein
entitled to recognition as such, to transfer to said government,
upon terms which shall be reasonable and just, all rights secured
under the cession by Spain, and to thereupon leave the government
and control of the islands to their people."

I must take issue with Blount as to the effect which these resolutions
might have had if passed. The Insurgents felt themselves to be fully
competent to bring about such pacification of the islands as they
deemed necessary. At the time the resolutions were presented in the
Senate their soldiers were straining at the leash, ready to attack
their American opponents upon the most slender excuse. Aguinaldo
himself could not have held them much longer, and it is not impossible
that they got away from him as it was. They would have interpreted the
passage of the Bacon resolutions as a further evidence of weakness,
and hastened their attack. As we have seen, "war, war, war" was what
they wanted.

Blount has endeavoured to shift the responsibility for the outbreak
of hostilities to the United States by claiming that certain words
italicized by him in what he calls the "Benevolent Assimilation
Proclamation" were necessarily, to the Insurgents, "fighting
words." The expressions referred to have to do with the establishment
of United States sovereignty and the exercise of governmental control
in the Philippine Islands.

These words were not "fighting words," the Insurgent policy being,
as I have shown by the records, to consider the acceptance of a
protectorate or of annexation in the event that it did not prove
possible to negotiate absolute independence, or probable that the
American troops could be driven from the islands.

The growing confidence of the Insurgents in their ability to whip
the cowardly Americans, rather than any fixed determination on their
part to push a struggle for independence to the bitter end, led to
their attack.


Insurgent Rule and the Wilcox-Sargent Report

The Good Book says, "By their fruits ye shall know them, whether
they be good or evil," and it seems proper to apply this test to the
Insurgents and their government.

The extraordinary claim has been advanced that the United States
destroyed a republic in the Philippines and erected an oligarchy on
its ruins. Various writers and speakers who have not gone so far as
this have yet maintained that Aguinaldo and his associates established
a real, effective government throughout the archipelago during the
interim between his return and the outbreak of hostilities with the
United States.

In summarizing conditions on September 15, 1898, Judge Blount says:

"Absolute master of all Luzon outside Manila at this time, with
complete machinery of government in each province for all matters of
justice, taxes, and police, an army of some 30,000 men at his beck, and
his whole people a unit at his back, Aguinaldo formally inaugurated his
permanent government--permanent as opposed to the previous provisional
government--with a Constitution, Congress, and Cabinet, patterned after
our own, [237] just as the South American republics had done before
him when they were freed from Spain, at Malolos, the new capital."

He refers to our utter failure to understand "what a wonderfully
complete 'going concern' Aguinaldo's government had become
throughout the Philippine Archipelago before the Treaty of Paris was
signed." [238]

He bases his claim as to the excellent state of public order in the
Insurgent territory at this time on a report of Paymaster W. E. Wilcox
and Naval Cadet L. R. Sargent of the United States Navy, who between
October 8 and November 20, 1898, made a long, rapid trip through
northern Luzon, traversing the provinces of Bulacan, Pampanga,
Tarlac, Pangasinan, Nueva Ecija, Nueva Vizcaya, Isabela, Cagayan,
South Ilocos and Union, in the order named, thence proceeding to
Dagupan and down the railroad through Pangasinan, Tarlac, Pampanga
and Bulacan to Manila.

He says that these gentlemen found the authority of Aguinaldo's
government universally acknowledged, the country in a state of perfect
tranquillity and public order, [239] with profound peace and freedom
from brigandage and the like. [240]

Now if it be true that Aguinaldo established complete machinery of
government throughout all of Luzon outside of Manila for all matters
of justice, taxes and police, so that life and property were safe
and peace, tranquillity and justice assured, we may well dispense
with quibbling as to whether the proper name was applied to such
government. But did he?

Let us examine with some care the history of the Wilcox-Sargent trip,
and see if we can gain further light from other sources relative to
the condition of public order in the territory which they traversed.

I propose, for the most part, to let the captured Insurgent records
speak for themselves, as it is fair to assume that Insurgent officers
were at no pains to represent conditions as worse than they really
were. In view of the fragmentary character of these records, we may
also assume that the complete story would be still more interesting
and instructive than the one which I have been able to reconstruct.

Messrs. Sargent and Wilcox were almost everywhere hospitably received,
and were entertained with dinners and dances after the inimitable
fashion of the hospitable Filipino everywhere. They gained a very
favourable impression of the state of public order in the provinces
through which they passed for the reason that from the very start
their trip was strictly personally conducted. They saw exactly what
it was intended that they should see and very little more. Their
progress was several times interrupted for longer or shorter periods
without adequate explanation. We now know that on these occasions the
scenery so carefully prepared in advance for them had become a little
disarranged and needed to be straightened up. Facts which I will cite
show that most shocking and horrible events, of which they learned
nothing, were occurring in the territory through which they passed.

For a considerable time before their departure American visitors
had been carefully excluded from the Insurgent territory, but the
Filipino leaders decided to let these two men go through it to the
end that they might make as favourable a report as possible. How
carefully the way was prepared for American visitors is shown by the
following telegram:--

"_San Pedro, Macati_,

"July 30, 1898.

"To the Local Presidente of Pasig:

"You are hereby informed that the Americans are going to your town
and they will ask your opinion [of what the people desire.--Tr.] You
should answer them that we want a republican government. The same
answer must be given throughout your jurisdiction.

(Signed) "Pio Del Pilar,

"General of the Second Zone." [241]

Now General Pilar had an uncomfortable way of killing people who did
not obey his orders, and under the rules of the Insurgent government
he was abundantly justified in so doing. His suggestions as to what
visiting Americans should be told or shown would be likely to be
acceded to. Certainly this seems to have been the case in the present
instance, for on the same day General Noriel reported as follows: [242]

"President R. G., Bacoor, from Gen. Noriel, Pineda, July 30, 12.10
P.M.: I inform your excellency that some commissioners of the American
admiral are making investigations in the region around Pasay as to
the wishes and opinion of the people as to the government. To-day I
received a statement from some, giving the answer: 'Free government
under American protectorate [copy mutilated, two or three words
missing here] the President.'"

Blount quotes with approval Admiral Dewey's statement made shortly
after the return of Wilcox and Sargent that in his opinion their report
"contains the most complete and reliable information obtainable
in regard to the present state of the northern part of Luzon
Island." [243] This was true.

The admiral might have gone further and said that it contained
practically the only information then obtainable in regard to
conditions in the territory in question, but as I shall conclusively
show it was neither complete nor reliable.

Judge Blount in describing the experiences of Messrs. Wilcox and
Sargent naively makes the statement that:

"The tourists were provided at Rosales by order of Aguinaldo with
a military escort, 'which was continued by relays all the way to
Aparri.'" [244]

It certainly was!

Very little Spanish was then spoken in Nueva Vizcaya, Isabela or
Cagayan. What opportunity had these two men, ignorant as they were
of the native dialects, to learn the sinister facts as to what had
been and was occurring in the territory which they visited?

No one can fail to be delighted with Filipino hospitality, which
was lavishly bestowed upon them everywhere, and it is only natural
that they should have reported favourably upon what they saw. It
was about this time that an order was issued [245] that fronts of
buildings should be whitewashed, streets cleaned and fences repaired
with a view to showing every one, and especially travellers through
the territory of the Insurgents, that they were "not opposed to a
good such as a refined and civilized people should have." Doubtless
the report of the two men from Dewey's fleet was made in the best
of faith. I will now endeavour to show what were some of the actual
conditions in the territory through which they passed.


They first visited Bulacan. They do not mention hearing of the
activities of a Chinaman named Ignacio Paua, who had been given
the rank of colonel by Aguinaldo and assigned the task of extorting
contributions for the revolution from his countrymen. In a letter to
Aguinaldo written on July 6, 1898, Paua states that he has collected
more than $1,000 from the Chinese of these small towns, but asks
for an order "prohibiting the outrages that are being committed
against such merchants as are not our enemies." He further says,
"When the contributions from the Chinamen of all the pueblos shall
have been completed I wish to publish a proclamation forbidding any
injury to the Chinamen and any interference with their small business
enterprises," and adds that "the natives hereabouts themselves are
the people who are committing said abuses." [246]

Apparently Paua had no objection to the committing of outrages against
merchants that were the enemies of the cause, nor does he seem to have
objected to injury to Chinamen before contributions were completed. His
own methods were none too mild. On August 27, 1898, General Pio del
Pilar telegraphed Aguinaldo that five Insurgent soldiers, under a
leader supposed to be Paua, had entered the store of a Chinaman,
and tried to kidnap his wife, but had left on the payment of $10 and
a promise to pay $50 later, saying that they would return and hang
their fellow countryman if the latter amount was not forthcoming. [247]

Paua was later made a general in consideration of his valuable


Our travellers next visited Pampanga. Here they apparently overlooked
the fact that Aguinaldo did not have "his whole people a unit at
his back." The citizens of Macabebe seem not to have approved of the
Aguinaldo regime, for the Insurgent records show that:--

"Representatives of the towns of Pampanga assembled in San Fernando
on June 26, 1898, and under the presidency of General Maximino
Hizon agreed to yield him complete 'obedience as military governor
of the province and representative of the illustrious dictator of
these Philippine Islands.' The town of Macabebe refused to send any
delegates to this gathering." [248]

It may be incidentally mentioned that Blount has passed somewhat
lightly over the fact that he himself during his army days commanded
an aggregation of sturdy citizens from this town, known as Macabebe
scouts, who diligently shot the Insurgents full of holes whenever they
got a chance. He incorrectly refers to them as a "tribe or clan." [249]
It is absurd to call them a tribe. They are merely the inhabitants
of a town which has long been at odds with the neighbouring towns of
the province.

Things had come to a bad pass in Pampanga when its head wrote that
the punishment of beating people in the plaza and tying them up so
that they would be exposed to the full rays of the sun should be
stopped. He argued that such methods would not lead the people of
other nations to believe that the reign of liberty, equality and
fraternity had begun in the Philippines. [250]

When it is remembered that persons tied up and exposed to the full rays
of the sun in the Philippine lowlands soon die, in a most uncomfortable
manner, we shall agree with the head of this province that this custom
has its objectionable features!


While the failure of Messrs. Wilcox and Sargent to learn of the
relations between the Tagalogs of Macabebe and their neighbours,
or of the fact that people were being publicly tortured in Pampanga,
is perhaps not to be wondered at under the circumstances, it is hard
to see how they could have failed to hear something of the seriously
disturbed conditions in Tarlac if they so much as got off the train

On August 24 the commissioner in charge of elections in that province
asked for troops to protect him, in holding them in the town of
Urdaneta, against a party of two thousand men of the place, who were
going to prevent them.

On September 22 the secretary of the interior ordered that the
requirements of the decree of June 18, establishing municipal
governments, should be strictly complied with, as in many of the towns
"the inhabitants continue to follow the ancient methods by which the
friars exploited us at their pleasure and which showed their great
contempt for the law." [251]

The following letter to Aguinaldo, from Juan Nepomuceno, Representative
from Tarlac, speaks for itself as to conditions in that province
on December 27, 1898, shortly after the American travellers passed
through it on their return:--

"I regret exceedingly being compelled to report to you that since
Sunday the 25th instant scandalous acts have been going on in the
Province of Tarlac, which I represent. On the night of the Sunday
mentioned the entire family of the Local Chief of Bamban was murdered,
and his house and warehouse were burned. Also the Tax Commissioner
and the Secretary, Fabian Ignacio, have been murdered. Last night
Senor Jacinto Vega was kidnapped at the town of Gerona; and seven
travellers were murdered at O'Donnel, which town was pillaged, as
well as the barrio of Matayumtayum of the town of La Paz. On that day
various suspicious parties were seen in the town of Panique and in the
same barrio, according to reliable reports which I have just received.

"All this general demoralization of the province, according to
the information which I have obtained, is due to the fact that the
province is dissatisfied with the Provincial Chief, Senor Alfonso
Ramos, and with Major Manuel de Leon; for this is substantiated by
the fact that all the events described occurred since last Sunday,
when Senor Alfonso Ramos returned, to take charge of the Office of
Provincial President, after having been detained for several days in
this town. Wherefore, I believe that in order to restore tranquillity
in the province, consideration be given to various documents that have
been presented to the Government and to the standing Committee of
Justice; and that there be removed from office Senor Alfonso Ramos,
as well as said Senor Manuel de Leon, who has no prestige whatever
in this province. Moreover on the day when fifty-four soldiers of the
command deserted, he himself left for San Fernando, Pampanga." [252]

On November 30, 1898, General Macabulos sent Aguinaldo a telegram [253]
from which it evidently appears that there was an armed uprising in
Tarlac which he was endeavouring to quell and that he hoped for early
success. Apparently, however, his efforts to secure tranquillity were
not entirely successful, for on December 18 he telegraphed Aguinaldo
as follows:--

"In a telegram dated to-day Lieut. Paraso, commanding a detachment
at Camilin, informs me that last night his detachment was attacked
by Tulisanes (robbers). The fire lasted four hours without any
casualties among our men. This afternoon received another from
the captain commanding said detachment, informing me of the same,
and that nothing new has occurred. The people of the town await with
anxiety the result of the charges they have made, especially against
the local president and the justice of the peace, the original of
which I sent to your high authority." [254]

Obviously the police machinery was not working quite smoothly when
a detachment of Insurgent troops could be kept under fire for four
hours by a robber band, and perhaps the attacking party were not all
"robbers." Soldiers do not ordinarily carry much to steal.

We obtain some further information from the following telegram of
December 27, 1898, sent by the secretary of the interior to the
President of the Revolutionary Government:--

"Most urgent. According to reports no excitement except in Bangbang,
Tarlac, which at 12 A.M., 25th, was attacked by Tulisanes [bandits
or robbers,--D.C.W.]. The local presidente with his patrols arrested
six of them. On continuing the pursuit he met in Talacon a party too
large to attack. At 7 A.M. of the 26th the town was again attacked by
criminals, who killed the tax collector, and others who burnt some
houses, among them that of the local presidente, and his stables,
in which he lost two horses. I report this for your information." [255]

Evidently tax collectors were not popular in Tarlac.

Still further light is shed on the situation by a telegram from the
secretary of the interior to Aguinaldo, dated December 28, 1898:--

"According to my information the excitement in Tarlac increases. I
do not think that the people of the province would have committed
such barbarities by themselves. For this reason the silence of
General Macabulos is suspicious; to speak frankly, it encourages
the rebels. Some seven hundred of them, with one hundred and fifty
rifles, entered Panique, seized the arms of the police, the town
funds, and attacked the houses of the people. I report this for your
information. All necessary measures will be taken." [256]

Note also the following from the secretary of the interior, under
date of December 27, 1898, to Aguinaldo:--

"I have just learned that not only in Bangbang, but also in Gerona,
Onell, and other places in Tarlac, men have been assaulted by
numerous Tulisanes, armed with rifles and bolos, who are killing
and capturing the inhabitants and attacking travellers, robbing
them of everything they have. The President should declare at once
that that province is in state of siege, applying martial law to the
criminals. That--(remainder missing)." [257]

The secretary of agriculture took a more cheerful view of the
situation. Under date of December 28 he telegraphed Aguinaldo as

"The events in Bangbang, Tarlac Province, according to a witness here
worthy of credit, have arisen from an attempt to procure vengeance
on the local presidente, and robbery of Chinese shops. Hence they
are without political importance. The tax collector killed, and
a countryman servant of the local presidente wounded. They burnt
two houses of the local presidente, a stable, and a warehouse for
sugar-cane." [258]

Obviously the robbery of Chinese shops and the killing of a few
individuals was at first considered by the secretary of agriculture
to be without political importance. Evidently he changed his mind,
however, for on the same day, December 28, 1898, he telegraphed
Aguinaldo as follows:--

"I think it necessary to send Aglipay [259] to quiet Tarlac. Send for
him. If you desire, I will go to Tarlac to investigate the causes of
the disorders, in order to find a remedy for them." [260]

At this stage of events Aguinaldo was summoned to Malolos by a telegram
from Mabini under date of December 29, which reads as follows:--

"Most urgent. You must come here immediately. Trias is sick. We can
come to no decision in regard to the Tarlac matter. Cannot constitute
a government without you." [261]

The measures which were actually taken are set forth in another
telegram of the same date from the secretaries of war and interior
to Aguinaldo, which reads as follows:--

"We have sent civil and military commissioners to Tarlac; among them
the Director of War and persons of much moral influence, in order
to stifle the disturbances. The necessary instructions have been
given them and full powers for the purpose, and as far as possible
to satisfy the people. Have also sent there six companies of soldiers
with explicit instructions to their commander to guard only the towns,
and make the people return to a peaceful life, using a policy of
attraction for the purpose." [262]

Let us hope that the commander was able to attract the people with
his six companies of soldiers, and make them return to a peaceful life.

Still further light is thrown on the situation in Tarlac by the
following extract from "Episodios de la Revolucion Filipina" by Padre
Joaquin D. Duran, an Augustinian priest, Manila, 1901, page 71:--

"At that period the Filipinos, loving order, having been deceived
of the emancipation promise, changed by the Katipunan into crimes
and attacks on the municipality of the pueblos, discontent broke
out in all parts, and, although latent in some provinces, in that of
Tarlac was materialized in an ex-sergeant of the late Spanish civil
guard. A valorous and determined man, he lifted up his flag against
that of Aguinaldo. One hundred rifles were sufficient to terrorize
the inhabitants of said province, crushing the enthusiastic members
of the revolutionary party.... Having taken possession of four towns,
Pecheche would have been everywhere successful if ambition and pride
had not directed his footsteps. In January, 1899, the Aguinaldista
commander of Tarlac province, afraid that his whole province would
espouse the cause of the sergeant, attempted by every means in his
power to interrupt his career, not hesitating to avail himself of
crime to destroy the influence of Pecheche with the many people
who had been incensed by the Katipunan and had in turn become firm
partisans of the Guards of Honour.

"The Ilocano Tranquilino Pagarigan, local presidente at that
time of Camiling, served as an admirable instrument for this
purpose.... Pecheche was invited to a solemn festivity organized
by Tranquilino, who pretended to recognize him as his chief, and
rendering himself a vassal by taking an oath to his flag. He accepted
the invitation, and after the mass which was celebrated went to a
meal at the convent, where, after the meal was over, the members of
the K.K.K. surrounded Pecheche and 10 of his officers and killed them
with bolos or tied them and threw them out of the windows and down
the staircase. Some priests were held captive in the building where
this took place and were informed of what had taken place immediately

This extract shows how easy it then was for any man of determination
to acquire a following, especially if he could dispose of a few
rifles. It also gives an excellent idea of the methods employed by
the Insurgents in dealing with those who opposed their rule.

General Fred D. Grant once told me, with much amusement, of an
interesting experience during a fight on Mt. Arayat in Pampanga. His
men took a trench and captured some of its occupants. Several of these
were impressed as guides and required to show the attacking forces
the locations of other trenches. At first they served unwillingly,
but presently became enthusiastic and rushed the works of their
quondam fellow-soldiers in the van of the American attack. Finally
they begged for guns. Grant added that he could start from Bacolor
for San Fernando any morning with a supply of rifles and pick up
volunteers enough to capture the place, and that on the return trip
he could get enough more to attack Bacolor!


And now we come to Pangasinan, the most populous province of Luzon,
and the third in the Philippines in number of inhabitants.

"In July, 1898, the officer in Dagupan wrote to the commanding general
of Tarlac Province that he would like to know whom he was required
to obey, as there were so many officials of all ranks who gave him
orders that it was impossible for him to know where he stood." [263]

In a letter dated August 17, 1898, to Aguinaldo, Benito Legarda
complained that a bad impression had been produced by the news from
Dagupan that when the Insurgents entered there, after many outrages
committed upon the inmates of a girls' school, every officer had
carried off those who suited him. [264]

What should we say if United States troops entered the town of
Wellesley and raped numerous students at the college, the officers
subsequently taking away with them the young ladies who happened
to suit them? Yet things of this sort hardly caused a ripple in the
country then under the Insurgent flag, and I learned of this particular
incident by accident, although I have known Legarda for years.

I quote the following general description of conditions in Pangasinan
from a letter addressed by Cecilio Apostol to General Aguinaldo on
July 6, 1898:--

"You probably know that in the Province of Pangasinan, of one of the
towns in which your humble servant is a resident, the Spanish flag
through our good fortune has not flown here for the past few months,
since the few Spaniards who lived here have concentrated in Dagupan,
a place not difficult of attack, as is said.

"But this is what is going on in this Province" There exist here two
Departmental Governments, one calling itself that of Northern Luzon and
of which Don Vicente del Prado is the President, and the other which
calls itself that of Northern and Central Luzon, presided over by Don
Juliano Paraiso. Besides these two gentlemen, there are two governors
in the province(!) one Civil Political Military, living in Lingayen,
named Don Felipe J. Bartolome, and another living in Real Guerrero,
a town of Tayug, named Don Vicente Estrella. And in addition there
are a large number of Administrators, Inspectors, Military Judges,
Generals,... they cannot be counted. It is a pandemonium of which even
Christ, who permits it, cannot make anything. Indeed, the situation
is insupportable. It reminds me of the schism in the middle ages when
there were two Popes, both legitimate, neither true. Things are as
clear as thick chocolate, as the Spaniards say. In my poor opinion,
good administration is the mother-in-law of disorder, since disorder is
chaos and chaos produces nothing but confusion, that is to say, death.

"I have had an opportunity, through the kindness of a friend, to read
the decree of that Government, dated June 18th, of the present year,
and the accompanying 'Instructions for the government of towns and
provinces.' Article 9 of the said decree says that the Superior
Government will name a commissioner for each province with the
special duty of establishing there the organization set forth in the
decree. Very well so far: which of the so-called Presidents of Northern
or of Northern and Central Luzon is the commissioner appointed by that
government to establish the new organization in that province? Are
military commanders named by you for Pangasinan? I would be very
much surprised if either of them could show his credentials. Aside
from these, the fact remains that in those instructions no mention is
made of Presidents of Departments, there is a manifest contradiction
in their jurisdictions, since while one calls himself president of
a Departmental Government, of Northern Luzon, the other governs the
Northern and Central portion of the Island, according to the seals
which they use.

"And, nevertheless, a person calling himself the General Administrator
of the Treasury and the said Governor of the Province, both of whom
live in Tayug, came to this town when the Spaniards voluntarily
abandoned it and gathered all the people of means, and drew up an act
of election, a copy of which is attached. From it you will see how this
organization violates the provisions of the decree of the 18th of June.

"Another item: They got up a contract with the people of means of this
town, and did the same thing in the other towns, in which contract
they exact from us $1250 which they call contributions of war (see
document No. 2 attached). Among the doubtful powers of these gentlemen
is the one to exact these sums included?

Have they express orders from that Government?

"Perhaps these blessed gentlemen--they are high flyers there is no
doubt about that,--have struck the clever idea of calling themselves
generals, governors, etc., in order to enjoy a certain prestige and to
give a certain color of legality to their acts--this, although they
don't know an iota of what they are doing. But what I am sure of,
and many other men also, is that there is no order, that here there
is not a single person in authority whom to obey. This superfluity
of rulers will finally lead to strained relations between them and
the towns of this province will end by paying the piper.

"But we poor ignorant creatures in so far as the republican form of
government is concerned, in order to avoid worse evils took them at
their word, obeyed them like automatons, hypnotized by the title of
'Insurgents' which they applied to themselves. But when I had an
opportunity to read the said decree, doubts were forced upon me, I
began to suspect--may God and they pardon me--that they were trying
to impose upon us nicely, that, shielded by the motto, 'have faith
in and submit to the will of the country' they came to these towns
'for business.'

"In order to dissipate this doubt, in order to do away with abuses,
if there are abuses, I made up my mind to send you this account
of the condition of things here. I flatter myself that when you
learn of the lamentable situation of this province, you will soon
deign to take steps to establish order, because thereon depends the
tranquillity of Pangasin~n and in the end a strict compliance with
your superior orders.

"There will be no limit to the thanks of the people of this province
if their petitions secure favourable consideration and an immediate
response from the high patriotism and honourable standpoint of the
Supreme Dictator of the Philippines." [265]

It will be noted that the picture thus drawn by Senor Apostol differs
in certain important particulars from that painted in such engaging
colours by Judge Blount.

In September, 1898, the civil governor of Pangasinan had to have an
escort of troops in passing through his province. [266]

On November 20, 1898, the head of the town of San Manuel wrote the
provincial governor that his people could no longer support the troops
quartered on them, as the adherents of the Katipunan had burned or
stolen all of their property. [267]

The sum total of Blount's description of affairs in this, the
most populous province of Luzon, is derived from the narrative of
Messrs. Wilcox and Sargent and reads as follows:--

"In Pangasinan 'the people were all very respectful and polite and
offered the hospitality of their homes.'" [268]

Doubtless true, but as a summary of conditions perhaps a trifle

_Nueva Ecija_

Nueva Ecija was the next province visited by Wilcox and Sargent. They
have failed to inform us that:--

"In December, 1899, certain men charged with being members of this
society [Guards of Honour] were interrogated in Nueva Ecija as to
their purposes. One of those questioned said:--

"'That their purpose was one day, the date being unknown to the
deponent, when the Ilocanos of Batac came, to rise up in arms and
kill the Tagalos, both private individuals and public employees,
excepting those who agreed to the former, for the reason that honours
were granted only to the Tagalos, and but few to the Ilocanos.'" [269]

Blount has assured us that the Filipinos were a unit at Aguinaldo's
back and were and are an united people, and here are the Ilocanos of
Nueva Ecija spoiling his theory by remembering that they are Ilocanos
and proposing to kill whom? Not certain individual Filipinos, who
might have offended them, but the Tagalogs!

That there were other troubles in Nueva Ecija is shown by the following

"On January 7, 1899, the commissioner of Aguinaldo's treasury sent to
collect contributions of war in Nueva Ecija Province reported that the
company stationed in San Isidro had become guerillas under command
of its officers and opposed his collections, stating that they were
acting in compliance with orders from higher authority." [270]

And now, in following the route taken by our tourist friends, we
reach Nueva Vizcaya and the Cagayan valley.


Insurgent Rule in the Cagayan Valley

Nueva Vizcaya is drained by the Magat River, a branch of the
Cagayan. While the provinces of Isabela and Cagayan constitute the
Cagayan valley proper, Blount includes Nueva Vizcaya in the territory
covered by this designation, and for the purpose of this discussion
I will follow his example.

Especial interest attaches to the history of Insurgent rule, in the
Cagayan valley, as above defined, for the reason that Blount himself
served there as a judge of the court of first instance. He says:

"The writer is perhaps as familiar with the history of that
Cagayan valley as almost any other American."

He was. For his action in concealing the horrible conditions which
arose there under Insurgent rule, with which he was perfectly familiar,
and in foisting on the public the account of Messrs. Wilcox and


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