...The 20th century has been characterized by three developments of great political importance: The growth of democracy, the growth of corporate power and the growth of corporate propaganda against democracy.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

DOCUMENTARY: Philippine American War


20th Kansas soldiers being met by the Filipinos, Philippines, late 19th or early 20th Century. Notice the white flags being held by the young girl kneeling by the urn and the adult right of the soldiers. To some this picture will be controversial. To me it is emotional for the American soldiers but much more for the Filipino’s that wanted to rule their own country but were denied for another 50 years.


1st Reserve Hospital, Filipino Ward, Manila, Philippines, c1899. Philippine American War. Notice the very thin Filipino seated with a bandaged leg wound.


This is the history that the USA school system does not teach, that of Manifest Destiny, before it existed as a coherent thought.

The ceding of the Philippines to the USA, sparked a three year long war between the USA and their previous Philippine allies.  This war was sparked when a US sentry discovered three armed Philippine soldiers on a bridge and fired at them – that was 4 February 1899.   It’s dangerous to be an ally of the USA. Below is the pictorial history of that war, the Philippine American War.


It was at the peak of the mountain pass in Northern Luzon that 60 Filipino soldiers carried out a heroic stand against American troops in the morning of Dec. 2, 1899, thus enabling President Emilio Aguinaldo to flee towards the "wilds of Lepanto." Sadly, however, 52 of them including Del Pilar, then 24, perished in what an American war correspondent dramatically termed as a "battle above the clouds."

The awesome story has been told and retold with epic grandeur, how Del Pilar stood with his valiant soldiers on the steep and solitary mountain Pass of Tirad, steadfast to repel the invader, or fight and die like honorable men. In a moving eulogy delivered on the occasion of the delivery of the remains of Del Pilar to the National Museum on Dec. 2, 1930 – 31 years after the historic battle, Benito T. Soliven, then Representative of the First District of Ilocos Sur, observed that the Filipino soldiers’ "stand against overwhelming odds has been fittingly compared by American contemporary writers to that of Leonidas and his Spartans at Thermopylae, and that of the embattled Afridis at Dargai Ridge. Even now, we are thrilled with the account of their courage. But the death of Del Pilar is something more than a soldier’s death. It was the sublime protest of a patriot against the decree of adverse fate. He had yearned for death when he saw that all was lost for the Republic. He had wished for it when long before the battle of Tirad, he proposed to meet the pursuing enemy after the disaster at Caloocan. He felt its obsession when at midnight on the bank of the river at Aringay he woke up his soldiers and pointedly asked them this question: ‘Brothers, which do you prefer, to die fighting or to flee like cowards?’

"…From morning till noon he repelled charge after charge, he tenaciously held on with his handful of men through the heat and agony of battle, till he himself fell dead among his slain soldiers. And well chosen and most fitting was the place where he offered the sacrifice of his life. It was on the mountain summit, overlooking the plains and the shores of his country, a massive and tremendous altar, built as it were for Titans, caressed by the rolling clouds of morning, lighted by the stars of dusk."

Admittedly, it was one of the darkest hours in Philippine history. President Aguinaldo was retreating to the mountains with only a few faithful followers about him. The young general could not bear to see the misfortune of his country. A man of iron who could not yield to the foe like Andrés Bonifacio and Antonio Luna, Del Pilar could accept no compromise.

Men of their caliber are worthy of our admiration. For noble and worthy causes that will enrich national well-being, they fight to the death with manly devotion and true heroism. In moments of need and times of great emergencies such as today, the entire Filipino nation can always draw lessons from their selfless sacrifices.

 Gen Gregorio del Pilar Commanding Rear Guard Tirad Pass


Philippine American War



The first Americans encamped in Malabon after the fall and burning of the town, Philippines, c1898

CASUALTIES, February 4, 1899 - July 4, 1902:

Filipinos    :     20,000 soldiers killed in action; 500,000 civilians died

Americans :      4,390 dead (1,053 killed in action; 3,337 other deaths)

Photos of the American conquest of the Philippines, an episode also referred to as the Filipino Genocide.
Soundtrack :Campanades a morts, by Lluís Llach.
LETRA (Catalan original)
Campanades a morts
fan un crit per la guerra
dels tres fills que han perdut
les tres campanes negres.
I el poble es recull
quan el lament s'acosta,
ja són tres penes més
que hem de dur a la memòria.
Campanades a morts
per les tres boques closes,
ai d'aquell trobador
que oblidés les tres notes!
Qui ha tallat tot l'alè
d'aquests cossos tan joves,
sense cap més tresor
que la raó dels que ploren?
Assassins de raons, de vides,
que mai no tingueu repòs en cap dels vostres dies
i que en la mort us persegueixin les nostres memòries.
Campanades a morts
fan un crit per la guerra
dels tres fills que han perdut
les tres campanes negres.
Obriu-me el ventre
pel seu repòs,
dels meus jardins
porteu les millors flors.
Per aquests homes
caveu-me fons,
i en el meu cos
hi graveu el seu nom.
Que cap oratge
desvetllí el son
d'aquells que han mort
sense tenir el cap cot.
Fotos de la conquista norteamericana de Filipinas, también llamada El Genocidio Filipino.

May 1, 1898: Dewey destroys Spanish fleet at Manila Bay

The USS Olympia at Hong Kong Harbor. Commodore George Dewey had his ships' brilliant peacetime white and buff schemes over-painted to war gray; this made them less conspicuous in battle. PHOTO was taken in April 1898.

On April 22, 1898, the US Asiatic Fleet commanded by Commodore George Dewey was riding at anchor in the British port of Hong Kong. Navy Secretary John Davis Long (LEFT) cabled the commodore that the United States had begun a blockade of Cuban ports, but that war had not yet been officially announced.

On April 25, Dewey (RIGHT) was notified that war had begun and received his sailing orders from Secretary Long : "War has commenced between the United States and Spain. Proceed at once to Philippine Islands. Commence operations at once, particularly against the Spanish fleet. You must capture vessels or destroy. Use utmost endeavors."

On that day, due to British neutrality regulations, the American squadron was ordered to leave Hong Kong (ABOVE, in 1898). While Dewey's ships steamed out from the British port, military bands on English vessels played "The Star-Spangled Banner," and their crews cheered the American sailors.

The USS Petrel at Hong Kong, prior to getting swathed in wartime gray, April 15, 1898

Commodore Dewey violated China's neutrality and anchored his fleet about 30 miles (50 km) down the Chinese coast, at Mirs Bay, and waited for further instructions. The squadron consisted of 1,744 officers and men, and 9 vessels: the cruisers Olympia,Baltimore, Raleigh and Boston, the gunboats Concord and Petrel, the revenue cutterMcCulloch, and the transport ships Zafiro and Nanshan.

The USS Concord at Hong Kong wearing wartime gray paint, 1898.

The Chinese did not bother to protest, and for two days the crews drilled with torpedoes  and quick-fire guns, and aimed their eight-inchers at cliffside targets on Kowloon Peninsula.

The Atlanta Constitution, issue of April 27, 1898.

At 2:00 p.m. on April 27, the American squadron raised anchor and left Mirs Bay for the 628-mile run to the Philippines (1,162 km). The Olympia's band blared "El Capitan" and the men shouted, "Remember the Maine!"

The British colony of Hong Kong is located in the upper left corner of this 1899 US army map

Battle of Manila Bay

On May 1, the squadron destroyed the antiquated Spanish fleet commanded by Admiral Patricio Montojo in Manila Bay; sunk were 8 vessels: the cruisers Reina Cristina andCastilla, gunboats Don Antonio de Ulloa, Don Juan de Austria, Isla de Luzon, Isla de Cuba, Velasco, and Argos.

Chart (LEFT) shows Dewey's battle track during the Battle of Manila Bay, with X's depicting the positions of the Spanish vessels.

Contemporary satellite photo of the Cavite Peninsula. Cavite City is the current name of Cavite Nuevo. The city proper is divided into five districts: Dalahican, Santa Cruz, Caridad, San Antonio and San Roque. The Sangley Point Naval Base is part of the city and occupies the northernmost portion of the peninsula. The historic island of Corregidor and the adjacent islands and detached rocks of Caballo, Carabao, El Fraile and La Monja found at the mouth of Manila Bay are part of the city's territorial jurisdiction.

A Japanese woodblock print of the Battle of Manila Bay. Print courtesy of the MIT Museum.

By 1899, the United States was involved in its first war in Asia. Three others were to follow in the course of the next century: against Japan, North Korea and China, and, finally, Viet Nam. But the first Asian war was against the Filipinos.

At the end of the Spanish-American War, the U.S. collected Puerto Rico as a colony, set up a protectorate over Cuba, and annexed the Hawaiian Islands. President William McKinley also forced Spain to cede the Philippine Islands. To the American people, McKinley explained that, almost against his will, he had been led to make the decision to annex: "There was nothing left for us to do but to take them all, and educate the Filipinos, and uplift and civilize and christianize them as our fellow-men for whom Christ also died." McKinley was either unaware of or simply chose not to inform the people that, except for some Muslim tribesmen in the south, the Filipinos were Roman Catholics, and, therefore, by most accounts, already Christians.

In reality, the annexation of the Philippines was the centerpiece of the "large policy" pushed by the imperialist cabal (neocons of today) to enlist the United States in the ranks of the great powers. To encourage the Americans in their new role, Rudyard Kipling, the British imperialist writer, composed a poem urging them to "take up the White Man's Burden."

There was a problem, however. When the war with Spain started, Emilio Aguinaldo, the leader of the Philippine independence movement, had been brought to the islands by Commodore Dewey himself. Aguinaldo had raised an army of Filipino troops who had acquitted themselves well against the Spanish forces. But they had fought side by side with the Americans to gain their independence from Spain, not to change imperial masters. With the Spaniards gone, the Filipinos prepared a constitution for their new country — while McKinley prepared to conquer it. Hostilities broke out in February 1899, and an American army of 60,000 men was sent halfway across the globe to subdue a native people.

At first Aguinaldo, whose rebel army had been fighting the Spanish for two years, allied with the U.S. in defeating the Spanish, hoping the U.S. would support the independence of the Philippine republic that he had declared in 1898. But it soon became apparent that the U.S. intended to keep the Philippines as a colony and, in early 1899, the conflict erupted into full war between the U.S. army and Aguinaldo's army. Two years later Aguinaldo was captured. He agreed to swear allegiance to the U.S., and the war was effectively over. In July 1902 the U.S. declared an official end to the war. (In 1946 the U.S. granted independence to the Philippines.)
In September 1899, as intense jungle fighting continued in the Filipino-controlled areas, Aguinaldo published two appeals to Americans. One was a pamphlet entitled A True Narrative of the Philippine Revolution addressed "To All Civilized Nations and Especially to the Great North American Republic," in which he accuses the U.S. of manipulating the Filipino leaders into a false hope of independence. The second was this article published in the North American Review, in which he challenges Americans to consider the Philippine struggle as equivalent to the American Revolution—with the same ideals of freedom and republican government that the U.S. was violating in its foreign policy, he argues. He also warns the U.S. that it is "falling into the pit you have dug for yourselves," and that the American public—even its president—is being misled about the true course of the war. A strong piece to pair with the essays in this section by Mark Twain (a member of the short-lived Anti-Imperialist League), and to introduce students to an oft-neglected war in U.S. history.

Commodore George Dewey (second from right) on the bridge of USS Olympia during the battle of Manila Bay. Others present are (left to right): Samuel Ferguson (apprentice signal boy), John A. McDougall (Marine orderly) and Merrick W. Creagh (Chief Yeoman).

The Olympia's men cheering the Baltimore during the battle of Manila Bay

Sunken Spanish flagship Reina Cristina

One hundred sixty-one Spanish sailors died and 210 were wounded, eight Americans were wounded and there was one non-combat related fatality (heart attack).

Admiral Montojo (LEFT) escaped to Manila in a small boat. 

Montojo was summoned to Madrid in order to explain his defeat in Cavite before the Supreme Court-Martial. He leftManila in October and arrived in Madrid on Nov. 11, 1898.

By judicial decree of the Spanish Supreme Court-Martial, (March 1899), Montojo was imprisoned. Later, he was absolved by the Court-Martial but was discharged. In an odd change of events, one of those who defended Admiral Montojo was his former adversary at Cavite, Admiral George Dewey.  Montojo died in Madrid, Spain, on Sept. 30, 1917 (Dewey died earlier in the same year,  on January 16). 

The Cavite arsenal and navy yard. PHOTOS were taken in 1898 or 1899.

Fort Guadalupe, Cavite Navy Yard (photo taken in 1900)

The victory gave to the US fleet the complete control of Manila Bay and the naval facilities at Cavite and Sangley Point..

When the news of the victory reached the U.S., Americans cheered ecstatically. Dewey became an instant national hero. Stores soon filled with merchandise bearing his image. Few Americans knew what and where the Philippines were, but the press assured them that the islands were a welcome possession.

President McKinley told his confidant, H.H. Kohlsaat, Editor of the Chicago-Times Herald: "When we received the cable from Admiral Dewey telling of the taking of the Philippines I looked up their location on the globe. I could not have told where those darned islands were within 2,000 miles!" [Some months later he said: "If old Dewey had just sailed away when he smashed that Spanish fleet, what a lot of trouble he would have saved us."]

On the morning of May 2nd, Dewey notified the Spanish Governor-General that since the underwater Manila-Hong Kong telegraph cable was Manila's only link to the outside world, it should be considered neutral so that he could use it as well. When the Governor-General refused, Dewey dredged up and cut the cable, ending the direct flow of information out of the Philippines. The cable was operated by the British-owned Eastern Extension Australasia China Telegraph Company. [On May 23, Dewey also cut the company's Manila-Capiz cable, severing the electronic connection between Manila and the central Philippine islands of Panay, Cebu, and Negros].

In January of 1899, while fighting between American and Filipino troops was already occurring, President William McKinley issued the “Benevolent Assimilation Proclamation” which announced America’s intent to annex the Philippines and “assimilate” it into the United States.  Imagine hearing that one on CNN every day for a month. Sounds like “Healthy Forests” and “Clear Skies,” doesn’t it?  You’re right.

When the news of the proclamation reached the Philippines it was greeted with all the warmth of a striking cobra.  How could Spain cede the Philippines to America when Spain herself no longer ruled it?  And what’s all this about “assimilation?” That doesn’t sound very benevolent. 

There is one answer to all three questions: superior military power, and the United States was not only prepared to use it, but gave the commander of American troops in the Philippines a mandate to “extend by force American sovereignty over this country.”

The Treaty of Paris was finally ratified in February of 1899. Angulinda’s Filipino government issued a counter proclamation to McKinley’s “benevolent assimilation,” declaring that they would not allow the United States to occupy the Philippines. So we massacred them.

Don’t take my word for it. Listen to one of our own soldiers. Captain Elliott of Kansas described what “benevolent assimilation” really meant:

Talk about war being “hell,” this war beats the hottest estimate ever made of that locality. Caloocan was supposed to contain seventeen thousand inhabitants. The Twentieth Kansas swept through it, and now Caloocan contains not one living native. Of the buildings, the battered walls of the great church and dismal prison alone remain. The village of Maypaja, where our first fight occurred on the night of the fourth, had five thousand people on that day—now not one stone remains upon top of another. You can only faintly imagine this terrible scene of desolation. War is worse than hell.

And perhaps he is saying to himself, “It is yet another civilized power with its banner of the Prince of Peace in one hand and its loot basket and its butcher knife in the other.  Is there no salvation for us but to adopt civilization and lift ourselves down to its level?”

      • -- Mark Twain
      • “To The Person Sitting in Darkness”

American military strength was vastly greater than the Filipinos – in numbers, in equipment, and in training.  Yet, just like the British and the Boers, they could not quickly subdue what many American historians arrogantly call the “Filipino Insurrection.”

American forces indiscriminately killed natives (women and children included), burned villages, looted homes, and engaged in systematic torture of Filipino captives.  The war finally “ended” in 1902 when Aguinaldo was captured through trickery and deceit by General Frederick Funston (right). Several years later, Twain would lay his sight on Funston himself in “A Defense of General Funston,” after Funston labeled all those who had doubts about the war “traitors.”  After Angulinda was captured, Filipino guerillas continued to fight American forces until 1913.

Many people supported the colonization of the Philippines, and had no troubles with the slaughter of the Filipino “niggers.”  No person supported in more than Alfred Beveridge, United States Senator from Indiana:

"The Philippines are ours forever. We will not repudiate our duty in the archipelago. We will not abandon our duty in the Orient. We will not renounce our part in the mission of our race, trustee under God, of the civilization of the world."

Others like Twain, and Sumner before him, saw a great injustice and refused to be silent.  In 1903, George Hoar, distinguished Senator from the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, had this to say on the Senate floor to his colleagues who supported the war in the Philippines:

“What has been the practical statesmanship which comes from your ideals and sentimentalities?  You have wasted six hundred millions of treasure.  You have sacrificed nearly ten thousand American lives, the flower of our youth. You have devastated provinces. You have slain uncounted thousands of the people you desire to benefit.”

May 3, 1898:  1Lt. Dion Williams, US Marine Corps, and the marine detachment which ran up the first American flag to fly over the Philippines, render military courtesies to Commodore George Dewey on his first visit ashore.

Four American soldiers at a captured Spanish outpost in Cavite Province. Photo was taken in 1898.

The Spanish Governor-General and military commander, General Basilio de Agustin y Davila (LEFT), through the British consul, Edward H. Rawson-Walker, intimated to Dewey his willingness to surrender to the American  squadron. 

But Dewey could not entertain the proposition because he had no force with which to occupy Manila.

He said, "...I would not for a moment consider the possibility of turning it over to the undisciplined insurgents, who, I feared, might wreak their vengeance upon the Spaniards and indulge in a carnival of loot."

Spanish Captain-General Basilio de Agustin y Davila clothed in the functions of a viceroy surrounded by his staff with a group of the principal officers under his command inManila.

The Spanish army garrisoned in Manila consisted of about 13,332 soldiers (8,382 Spanish, 4,950 Filipino).

Gun practice on the Baltimore during the blockade of Manila Bay

With no ground troops to attack the city, Dewey blockaded the harbor. He also soon became aware of the dual risks of a Spanish relief expedition and intervention by another power. He cabled Washington and asked for reinforcements.

1st California Volunteer Infantry Regiment heading to the Presidio, May 7, 1898.

The US Army started to marshall a force at the Presidio, San Francisco, California, that became the 8th Army Corps, dubbed the Philippine Expeditionary Force, under Maj. Gen. Wesley Merritt.

Rear Admiral George Dewey with staff and ship's officers, on board USS Olympia, 1898.

On May 11, 1898, Dewey was promoted to Rear Admiral.

The few major warships left in the eastern Pacific were also ordered to reinforce Dewey. The cruiser Charleston accompanied the first Army expedition, bringing with her a much-needed ammunition resupply. To provide the Asiatic Squadron with heavy firepower, the monitors Montereyand Monadnock left California in June. These slow ships were nearly two months in passage. Monterey was ready in time to help with Manila's capture, while Monadnock arrived a few days after the Spanish surrender.

May 19, 1898: Emilio Aguinaldo Returns

Filipino exiles in Hong Kong, photo taken in early 1898: Emilio Aguinaldo (sitting, 2nd from right) led 36 other revolutionary leaders into exile in the British colony. They were:  Pedro Aguinaldo, Tomas Aguinaldo, Joaquin Alejandrino, Celestino Aragon, Jose Aragon, Primitivo Artacho, Vito Belarmino, Agapito Bonzon, Antonio Carlos, Eugenio de la Cruz, Agustin de la Rosa, Gregorio H. del Pilar, Valentin Diaz, Salvador Estrella, Vitaliano Famular, Dr. Anastacio Francisco, Pedro Francisco, Francisco Frani, Maximo Kabigting,  Vicente Kagton, Silvestre Legazpi, Teodoro Legazpi, Mariano Llanera, Doroteo Lopez,  Vicente Lukban, Lazaro Makapagal, Miguel Malvar, Tomas Mascardo, Antonio Montenegro, Benito Natividad, Carlos Ronquillo, Manuel Tinio, Miguel Valenzuela, Wenceslao Viniegra, Escolastico Viola and Lino Viola.

In the run up to the Spanish-American War, several American Consuls - in Hong Kong,Singapore and Manila - sought Emilio Aguinaldo's support. None of them spoke Tagalog, Aguinaldo's own language, and Aguinaldo himself spoke poor Spanish. A British businessman who spoke Tagalog, Howard W. Bray, agreed to act as interpreter. Aguinaldo and Bray maintained later that the Philippines had been promised independence in return for helping the U.S. defeat the Spanish.

Some of the Filipino exiles and Spanish officers in charge of their deportation to Hong Kong. Emilio Aguinaldo is the central figure in the second row; to his right is Lt. Col. Miguel Primo de Rivera, nephew of the Spanish Governor-General. PHOTO was taken in Hong Kong in early 1898.

Hong Kong:  Some of the exiles at a park with British acquaintances.  Photo taken in 1898.

In Hong Kong, Aguinaldo was told by U.S. consul Rounsenville Wildman that Dewey wanted him to return to the Philippines to resume the Filipino resistance.

The San Francisco Call, May 18, 1898

Arriving in Manila with thirteen of his staff on May 19  aboard the American revenue cutter McCulloch, Aguinaldo reassumed command of Filipino rebel forces. Although he and Dewey spoke, no one knows the  substance of the discussions– Dewey only spoke Spanish, Aguinaldo spoke it poorly and there was no intermediary.

[Years later, Aguinaldo recalled a meeting with Dewey: "I asked whether it was true that he had sent all the telegrams to the Consul at Singapore, Mr. Pratt, which that gentleman had told me he received in regard to myself. The Admiral replied in the affirmative, adding that the United States had come to the Philippines to protect the natives and free them from the yoke of Spain. He said, moreover, that America is exceedingly well off as regards territory, revenue, and resources and therefore needs no colonies, assuring me finally that there was no occasion for me to entertain any doubts whatever about the recognition of the Independence of the Philippines by the United States."]

[Aguinaldo, in his book, "A Second Look At America," admitted he naively believed that Dewey "acted in good faith" on behalf of the Filipinos.]

Cavite Province:  A medic attends to a wounded Filipino soldier. Photo taken in May or June 1898.

Cavite Province:  The same wounded Filipino soldier shown in preceding photo is loaded onto a cart.  Photo taken in May or June 1898.

Five days after his arrival, on May 24, Aguinaldo temporarily established a dictatorial government, but plans were afoot to proclaim the independence of the country. A democratic government would then be set up.

In late May, Dewey was ordered by the U.S. Department of the Navy to distance himself from Aguinaldo lest he make untoward commitments to the Philippine forces.

The official directive was not necessary; Dewey had already made up his mind beforehand:   "From my observation of Aguinaldo and his advisers I decided that it would be unwise to co-operate with him or his adherents in an official manner... In short, my policy was to avoid any entangling alliance with the insurgents, while I appreciated that, pending the arrival of our troops, they might be of service."    [RIGHT, Aguinaldo's headquarters inside the Cavite navy yard, May 1898].

Dewey referred to the Filipinos as "the Indians" and promised Washington, D.C. that he would "enter the city [Manila] and keep the Indians out."

Issue of May 31, 1898

Issue of June 7, 1898

By early June, with no arms supplied by Dewey, Aguinaldo's forces  had overwhelmed  Spanish garrisons in Cavite and around Manila, surrounded the capital with 14 miles of trenches, captured the Manila waterworks and shut off access or escape by the Pasig River. Links were established with other movements throughout the country.

With the exception of Muslim areas on Mindanao and nearby islands, the Filipinos had taken  effective control of the rest of the Philippines.

Aguinaldo's 12,000 troops kept the Spanish soldiers bottled up inside Manila until American troop reinforcements could arrive.

Philippine army soldiers are seen here guarding 3 Filipino judicial prisoners in the stocks. PHOTO was taken in 1898.

Aguinaldo was concerned, however, that the Americans would not commit to paper a statement of support for Philippine independence.

[John Foreman, American historian of the early Philippine-American War period stated that, "Aguinaldo and his inexperienced followers were so completely carried away by the humanitarian avowels of the greatest republic the world had seen that they willingly consented to cooperate with the Americans on mere verbal promises, instead of a written agreement which could be held binding on the U.S. Government."]

Spanish mestizas.  LEFT photo was taken at Manila's Teatro Zorillain January 1894; RIGHT photo was taken in Cavite in 1898.

Photo taken in 1898 in Manila

Upper-class native Filipino women.  Photos taken in the late 1890's.

Native Filipino women.  Photo taken in the late 1890's.

Assembly room (LEFT) and library (RIGHT) of the private Universidad de Santo Tomas, at Intramuros district, Manila, in 1887. It was founded on April 28, 1611 by Dominican friars and until 1927 did not accept women (The same year that it moved to Sampaloc district). During the Spanish era, only affluent native Filipinos could afford to send their sons to the school. Now known as the University of Santo Tomas (UST), it has the oldest extant university charter in the Philippines. The UST produced four Philippine presidents and many revolutionary heroes, including Jose Rizal, the national hero.

The Colegio de San Juan de Letran in Intramuros district, Manila, and students, in 1887.  The private Roman Catholic institution, founded in 1620, was and still is, owned by priests of the Dominican Order. It catered to the sons of wealthy native Filipinos and did  not accept women until the 1970's. It produced four Philippine presidents and many  revolutionary heroes; it is the only Philippine school that has graduated a Catholic Saint that actually lived and studied inside its original campus (Vietnamese Saint Vicente Liem de la Paz).  Letran is the only Spanish-era school that still stands on its original site in Intramuros.

Scenes at the secondary school Ateneo Municipal de Manila, Intramuros district, Manila, in 1887.  Now known as the Ateneo de Manila University, a private coed institution run by the Jesuits, it began on Oct. 1, 1859 when the latter took over the Escuela Municipal, then a small private primary school maintained for the children of Spanish residents. In 1865, it became the Ateneo Municipal de Manila when it converted to a secondary school for boys, and began admitting native Filipinos who invariably came from well-to-do families. The Ateneo attained college status in 1908. It moved to Ermita district, Manila, in 1932.  The campus was devastated in 1945 during World War II. In 1952, most of the Ateneo units relocated to Loyola Heights, Quezon City. It became a university in 1959. It admitted women for the first time in 1973. The Ateneo produced many revolutionary heroes, including the national hero, Jose Rizal.

Manila:  Native Filipino schoolboys of the public Escuela Municipal de Instrucción Primaria de Quiapo.  Photo taken in 1887.

Montalban, Morong Province:  A little village school for girls under a bigmango tree.  Photo, taken in mid-May 1894, includes 3 American businessmen.

Chinese merchants in Manila.  Photos taken in the late 1890's

Chinese merchants:  a chocolate-maker (LEFT) and a textile fabric manufacturer (RIGHT).  Photos taken at Manila in the late 1890's.

Filipino fighters and some American soldiers.   Photo taken in 1898.

June 3, 1898: Spanish battery of two 8-centimeter caliber guns firing at Filipinos at the Zapote River bridge, Cavite Province. The Spaniards kept up a continuous fire with their field guns and Mauser rifles before charging the bridge.

June 3, 1898: Spanish soldiers on Zapote Bridge. It was a temporary occupation; the Filipinos, numbering about 500, counterattacked and sent the Spanish force of 3,500 reeling back.

Filipinos moving captured Spanish cannon

Filipinos with captured Spanish field-piece

Filipino soldiers with their artillery in front of Fort San Felipe Neri, Cavite Province. Photo taken in 1898.

Filipino soldiers assemble in front of the San Nicolas de Tolentino Church in Parañaque, a few miles south of Manila. The Filipino army converted the church and convent into a storehouse and magazine. PHOTO was taken in 1898.

Spanish troops in Cebu Island

The USS Olympia

While awaiting the arrival of ground troops, Dewey welcomed aboard his flagship USS Olympia members of the media who clamored for interviews. Numerous vessels of other foreign nations, most conspicuously those of Britain, Germany, France, and Japan, arrived almost daily in Manila Bay. These came under the pretext of guarding the safety of their own citizens in Manila, but their crews kept a watchful eye on the methods and activities of the American Naval commander.

The German fleet of five ships, commanded by Vice Admiral Otto von Diederichs (RIGHT, in 1898) and ostensibly in Philippine waters to protect German interests (a single import firm), acted provocatively—cutting in front of US ships, refusing to salute the US flag (according to customs of naval courtesy), taking soundings of the harbor, and landing supplies for the besieged Spanish. Germany was eager to take advantage of whatever opportunities the conflict in the Philippines might afford. Dewey called the bluff of the German vice admiral, threatening a fight if his aggressive activities continued, and the Germans backed down.

In recognition of George Dewey's leadership during the Battle of Manila Bay, a special medal known as the Dewey Medal was presented to the officers and sailors under Commodore Dewey's command. Dewey was later honored with promotion to the special rank of  Admiral of the Navy; a rank that no one has held before or since in the US Navy.

Years later in U.S. Senate hearings, Admiral Dewey testified, "I never treated him (Aguinaldo) as an ally, except to assist me in my operations against the Spaniards."

Dewey was born on Dec. 26, 1837 in Montpelier, Vermont. He graduated from the US Naval Academy at Annapolis, Maryland on June 18, 1858. During the American Civil War he served with Admiral David Farragut during the Battle of New Orleans and as part of the Atlantic blockade.

He was commissioned as a Commodore on Feb. 28, 1896.

On Nov. 30, 1897 he was named commander of the Asiatic Squadron, thanks to the help of strong political allies, including Assistant Secretary of the Navy, Theodore Roosevelt.

He held the rank of Admiral of the Navy until his death in Washington, DC, on Jan. 16, 1917.

General Emilio Aguinaldo

Aguinaldo was the first and youngest President of the Philippines. He was born onMarch 22, 1869 in Cavite El Viejo (now Kawit), Cavite province. He was slender and stood at five feet and three inches. He studied at the Colegio de San Juan de Letran. He quit his studies at age 17 when his father died so that he could take care of the family farm and engage in business.

He joined freemasonry and was made a master mason on Jan. 1, 1895 at Pilar Lodge No. 203 (now Pilar Lodge No. 15) at Imus,Cavite and was founder of Magdalo Lodge No. 3.

On March 14, 1896, he joined theKatipunan and for his name in the secret revolutionary society, he chose Magdalo, after the patron saint of Cavite El Viejo, Mary Magdalene. He was initiated in the house of Katipunan Supremo Andres Bonifacio on Cervantes St. (now Rizal Ave.), Manila.

Aguinaldo married his first wife, Hilaria del Rosario of Imus, Cavite in 1896. From that marriage five children (Miguel, Carmen, Emilio, Jr., Maria and Cristina) were born.

When the revolution against Spain broke out on Aug. 30, 1896, he was the capitan municipal (mayor) of Cavite el Viejo.

Aguinaldo defeated the best of the Spanish generals: Ernesto de Aguirre in the Battle of Imus, Sept. 3, 1896; Ramon Blanco in the Battle of Binakayan, Nov. 9-11, 1896; and Antonio Zaballa in the Battle of Anabu, February 1897).

He assumed total control of the Filipino revolutionary forces after executing Andres Bonifacio on May 10, 1897.

He was captured by the Americans led by Brig. Gen. Frederick Funston on March 23, 1901 in remote Palanan, Isabela Province. On April 1, 1901, he pledged allegiance to the United States. (His son, Emilio Jr., graduated from West Point in 1927, in the same class as Gen. Funston's son.)

On March 6, 1921, his first wife, Hilaria, died.

On July 14, 1930, at age 61, Aguinaldo  married  Maria Agoncillo,  49-year-old niece of Felipe Agoncillo, the pioneer Filipino diplomat.

On Feb. 6, 1964, less than a year after the death of his second wife, Aguinaldo died of coronary thrombosis, at the age of 95, at the Veterans Memorial Hospital in Quezon City.

His remains are buried at the Aguinaldo Shrine in Kawit, Cavite Province.

US Infantry, Naval Reinforcements, Embark For Manila, May 25 - June 29, 1898

The US Army forces that invaded the Philippines in the Spanish-American and Philippine-American Wars assembled at the Presidio (ABOVE, in 1898) on the northern tip of the San Francisco Peninsula, California.

Camps of the 51st Iowa and 1st New York Volunteers at the Presidio, 1898. The Iowans went but the New Yorkers did not proceed to the Philippines.

The Presidio was originally a Spanish Fort built by Jose Joaquin Moraga in 1776. It was seized by the U.S. Military in 1846, officially opened in 1848, and became home to several Army headquarters and units. During its long history, the Presidio was involved in most of America's military engagements in the Pacific. It was the center for defense of the Western U.S. during World War II. The infamous order to inter Japanese-Americans, including citizens, during World War II was signed at the Presidio. Until its closure in 1995, the Presidio was the longest continuously operated military base in the United States.

Brig. Gen. Arthur C. MacArthur, Jr., at the Presidio, 1898

The lack of transport accommodation, which was corrected by sending vessels from the Atlantic coast of the United States, coupled with the imperative necessity for dispatching troops immediately to the Philippines, resulted in the movement of the 8th Army Corps by 7 installments, extending over a period from May to October.

Only 3 of these expeditions  [470 officers and 10,464 men] reached Manila in time to take part in the assault and capture of that city on August 13.

They were:

First Expedition, 115 officers and 2,386 men,commanded by Brig. Gen. Thomas M. Anderson:

1st California Volunteer Infantry Regiment; 2nd Oregon Volunteer Infantry Regiment; 14th United States Infantry Regiment (5 companies); California Volunteer Artillery (detachment).

Steamships: City of Sidney, Australia, and City of Peking [RIGHT, Harper's Weekly, June 11, 1898 issue].

Sailed May 25, arrived Manila June 30.

Second Expedition, 158 officers and 3,428 men, commanded by Brig. Gen. Felix V. Greene:

1st Colorado Volunteer Infantry Regiment; 1st Nebraska Volunteer Infantry Regiment; 10th Pennsylvania Volunteer Infantry Regiment; 18th United States Infantry Regiment (4 companies); 23rd United States Infantry Regiment (4 companies); Utah Volunteer Artillery (2 batteries); United States Engineers (detachment).

Steamships: China, Colon, and Zealandia.

Sailed June 15, arrived Manila July 17.

Men of Company D, 1st Idaho Volunteers, who sailed with the Third Expedition to the Philippines in June 1898. Photo was taken in May 1898.

Third Expedition, 197 officers, 4,650 men, commanded by Brig. Gen. Arthur C. MacArthur, Jr., Maj. Gen. Wesley Merritt accompanying:

18th United States Infantry Regiment (4 companies); 23rd United States Infantry Regiment (4 companies); 3rd United States Artillery acting as Infantry (4 batteries);  United States Engineers Battalion (1 company); 1st Idaho Volunteer Infantry Regiment; 1st Wyoming Volunteer Infantry Regiment; 13th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry Regiment; 1st North Dakota Volunteer Infantry Regiment; Astor Volunteer Artillery; Hospital and Signal Corps (detachments).

Steamships: Senator, Morgan City, City of Para, Indiana, Ohio, Valencia, and Newport.

Sailed June 27 and 29, arrived Manila July 25 and 31.

Farewells at Camp Merritt, just outside the Presidio, San Francisco. The camp was established on May 29, 1898 but abandoned on August 27 of the same year due to problems with disease, mostly measles and typhoid. The remaining troops bound for the Philippines were moved to Camps Merriam and Miller a bit north at the Presidio.

Company F, 1st Colorado Volunteer Infantry Regiment, at Camp Merritt, 1898

Dinner at the San Francisco armory to 1st California Volunteers, May 1898.

1st Nebraska Volunteers from Nebraska State University, 1898

The Lombard Gate of the Presidio, built in 1896, where most US troops en route to the Philippines passed through to meet awaiting ships.

The troops marched down Lombard Street to Van Ness, then to Market Street to the docks.

The Lombard Gate, the main entrance to the Presidio, as it looks in contemporary times.

Original caption: "Soldiers and their Sweethearts, on the Eve of Departure for Manila." Photo taken in 1898 in San Francisco.

1st California Volunteers boarding the City of Peking, San Francisco Bay, May 25, 1898

City of Peking leaving San Francisco Bay with the 1st California Volunteer Infantry Regiment aboard, First Expedition, May 25, 1898

The First Expedition stopped over at Honolulu, Hawaii, on June 1-4. Photo shows Brig. Gen. Thomas M. Anderson visiting the USS Charleston at Honolulu Bay. The cruiser convoyed the expedition to Manila.

USS Charleston, at Hong Kong Harbor, 1898. The protected cruiser convoyed the First Expedition from Hawaii to Manila, June 4-30, 1898. In 1899, during the Philippine-American War, she bombarded Filipino positions to aid Army forces advancing ashore, and took part in the capture of Subic Bay in September 1899. Charleston grounded and was wrecked beyond salvage near Camiguin Island north of Luzon on Nov. 2, 1899.

The USS Monterey is seen off Mare Island Naval Yard, Vallejo, California, 23 miles (37 km) northeast of San Francisco. The monitor sailed for Manila Bay on June 11 and arrived there on August 13. Photo was taken in June 1898.

1st Nebraska Volunteers embarking for Manila with the Second Expedition, June 15, 1898

The Second Expedition leaves San Francisco for the Philippines, June 15, 1898.

The transport China leaving for Manila as part of the Second Expedition. On board were the 18th US Infantry Regiment (Companies A and G); 1st Colorado Volunteer Infantry Regiment; Utah Volunteer Light Artillery (Battery B, Sections 3,4,5); and US Volunteer Engineers (Company A), June 15,1898.

USS Monadnock enroute to Manila from San Francisco Bay, June 23 - Aug. 16, 1898

USS Valencia leaving San Francisco with the Third Expedition aboard, June 27, 1898. The transport carried the 1st North Dakota Volunteer Infantry Regiment; 1st Washington Volunteer Infantry Regiment (Companies F, G, I, and L); and the California Heavy Artillery (Batteries A and D).

The USS Indiana leaving San Francisco for the Philippines, Third Expedition, June 27, 1898. On board were the 18th US Infantry Regiment (Companies D and H); 23rd US Infantry Regiment (Companies B, C, G, and L); US Engineers Battalion (Company A); and 1st North Dakota Volunteer Infantry Regiment (Company H).

Aug. 13, 1898: Mock Battle of Manila

PEACE PROTOCOL, Aug. 12, 1898, 4:23 p.m., Washington, D.C. [August 13, 4:23 a.m. in Manila] :  Jules Cambon, Ambassador of France and representing Spain [SEATED, left] and William R. Day, U.S. Secretary of State [SEATED, near center], sign the protocol suspending hostilities and defining the terms on which peace negotiations were to be carried on between the United States and Spain. The protocol was signed in the presence of Pres. William R. Mckinley [STANDING, 4th from right].

The mock battle of Manila was staged on August 13. At 7:30 a.m., with American and Spanish commanders unaware that a peace protocol had been signed between their governments a few hours earlier, the battle for Manila commenced.  Admiral Dewey had cut the only cable that linked Manila to the outside world on May 2nd; news of the war's end reached neither General Jaudenes or Admiral Dewey until August 16th.

13th Minnesota Volunteers fighting in the woods near Manila

Capt. Thomas Bentley Mott, aide to Maj. Gen. Wesley Merritt, wrote:  "...the bugle sounded the advance, the whole camp sent up a tremendous cheer, showing that neither rain, the darkness of the night, nor the unseen foe could dampen the involuntary delight of the men at the idea of at last getting at their enemy."

A carabao (water buffalo) drags a gun of the Utah Light Battery into position

General MacArthur's 1st Brigade began its movement towards the Spanish positions on the road leading to Pasay.  The terrain was swampy, the roads muddy, but by 8:05a.m. most of the elements had reached their forward positions and taken shelter for the opening volley.

1st Nebraska Volunteers moving on the seashore toward Manila

1st Colorado Volunteers kneeling on the beach to fire

Less than a mile to the west, General Greene's 2nd Brigade was making its advance along the beach.  Leading the way was the 1st Colorado Volunteer Infantry Regiment, followed by volunteer regiments from California, Nebraska, Utah, Pennsylvania, andOregon.  Ahead lay the Spanish fortification at Malate district, Fort San Antonio de Abad.

Company I of the 1st Colorado Volunteers advances through the grass

Fort San Antonio de Abad:  Photo shows damage from Admiral Dewey's naval guns

At 9:45 a.m., two of  Admiral George Dewey's ships (the cruiser Olympia and the gunboat Petrel) began bombarding Fort San Antonio de Abad. There was only sporadic and light return fire. As the 1st Colorado Volunteers  neared its walls, the naval bombardment stopped.

Aug. 13, 1898:  Two wounded Spanish soldiers found by the Americans inside Fort San Antonio de Abad.

The fort was deserted, save for two dead and two wounded Spaniards.

Original caption:  "From the staff at left, the First Colorado lowered the Spanish and swung out the American flag."  Fort San Antonio de Abad,  Malate district, Manila

1st Colorado Volunteers occupy Fort San Antonio de Abad in Malate district, Manila

At 10:35 a.m. Capt. Alexander M. Brooks of Denver, Colorado raised the Stars and Stripes over the captured fort.

Original caption: "Bamboo intrenchment of the Filipinos across the Manila and Dagupan railway. The cannon is a bronze piece captured from the Spaniards, June 1898".

As the naval bombardment ended and the American forces continued north in two columns, the Filipinos --- who had not been apprised of the script ---raced to join the battle. They thought there was a real battle going on that would liberate their capitol and they did not want to be left out. 

The Filipinos assaulted from four directions - the column of General Pio del Pilar took Sampaloc district; that of General Gregorio del Pilar took Tondo district, that of General Mariano Noriel took Singalong and Paco districts; that of General Artemio Ricarte routed the Spaniards in Sta. Ana district and pursued them all the way to Intramuros.

General Greene's 2nd Brigade left Malate and continued along the beach.

Aug. 13, 1898:  1st Colorado Volunteers entering Ermita district, Manila, close to Intramuros.

Aug. 13, 1898:  The first 2 American soldiers killed during the battle of Manila.

Blockhouse No. 14. Around this spot a great deal of the fighting of August 13 took place. A shell from a Utah gun took away the corner.

The gun that destroyed Spanish Blockhouse #14

Meanwhile, in the east, MacArthur's 1st Brigade moved through the Spanish trenches, overran Blockhouse #14, and confronted the Spanish position at Blockhouse #20 near Singalong.

Photo taken in 1898 or 1899: 13th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry Regiment Gatling Gun crew in the Philippines; the Minnesotans arrived in Manila on Aug. 7, 1898 and left on Aug. 10, 1899. The Regiment was mustered out with: 51 officers and 952 men; 6 officers and 68 men were  wounded in action, 2 officers and 42 men died (4 Killed in Action, 1 officer and 2 men died of wounds,1 officer and 33 men died of disease, 1 drowned).

When the 1st Brigade's 13th Minnesota Volunteers approached, the Spanish defenders fired a few rounds in a token resistance.  It was met by a similarly light return fire from the Americans.  Hearing the sound of the skirmish, the Filipinos rushed into the foray.  A pitched battle ensued, the soldiers of the 13th Minnesota caught in a cross-fire between the Spaniards ahead of them and the Filipino forces behind them.

Astor Battery crew going to the front

The men of the Astor Battery charged the stronghold in a pistol attack which saw the Spanish withdraw. It was probably at Blockhouse #20 that the Americans prohibited the Filipinos from proceeding any farther, and MacArthur's advance the rest of the way to the central city was unopposed.

US Third Artillery acting as infantry. In backqround is the strongest Spanish blockhouse outside the walled district of Intramuros, Manila.

At 11:00 a.m., as the two American columns converged on Intramuros, Admiral Dewey hoisted the international signal flag  "Do you surrender?".

Meanwhile, General Greene and his troops had reached the Luneta, the city promenade (ABOVE, pre-war 1890's), where they were  confronted with a heavily defended blockhouse, and a group of Spanish soldiers who, like the Filipinos, apparently were not privy to the unfolding script.

The periodic sniping from the Filipinos at the outskirts made the Spanish wary of an American double-cross, while Admiral Dewey wondered if the Spanish were about to pull some kind of quick trick when the surrender flag failed to rise over the city.  A huge Spanish flag continued to float over the city walls near one of  the heavy batteries.

At 11:45 a.m., the Belgian consul's launch drew alongside the Olympia. Consul Edouard Andre (LEFT) conferred with Admiral Dewey.

Flag Lt. Thomas Brumby took the largest American flag on the ship and went aboard the launch. The launch steamed away toward Manila, 1,500 yards away.

At 12:00 p.m., the international signal "C.F.L.", meaning "Hold conference",  was hoisted over the city walls.

At 2:33 p.m., Lt. Brumby returned and reported that the Spaniards would surrender  as soon as General Merritt got 600 to 700 American troops inside Intramuros to protect them from the Filipinos. Admiral Dewey ordered Lt. Brumby to tell General Merritt that he agreed to anything.

American troops marching into Intramuros

The Americans rushed into Intramuros.

At 5:45 p.m., the Spanish flag went down and Lt. Brumby (ABOVE, in 1898) hoisted the huge American flag in its place. The 2nd Oregon band struck up "The Star-Spangled Banner" while the Spanish women wept. The ships of the US fleet saluted the new flag with 21 guns each. In ten minutes 189 saluting charges were fired.

Programme of the musical concert on board Dewey's flagship, August 13th, the day of the fall of Manila

At 6:00 p.m., the band on the Olympia struck up "The Victory of Manila". 

The squad of 2nd Oregon Volunteers detailed to escort and raise the American flag over Manila.

Aug. 13, 1898:  Group of American officers before the Puerta Real ("Royal Gate") of Intramuros, Manila.

Terms of capitulation were promptly agreed upon between American and Spanish commanders and the occupation of the Spanish capital of the Philippines was complete. The Americans at once began to fraternize with their Spanish counterparts.

Squad of Spanish prisoners, surrendered to Brig. Gen. Francis V. Greene on Aug. 13, 1898

After the American flag was raised over Intramuros, Aguinaldo demanded joint occupation. General Merritt immediately cabled Brig. Gen. Henry C. Corbin, US Army Adjutant-General, in Washington, D.C.:

"Since occupation of the town and suburbs the insurgents on outside are pressing demand for joint occupation of the city. Situation difficult. Inform me at once how far I shall proceed in forcing obedience in this matter and others that may arise. Is Government willing to use all means to make the natives submit to the authority of the United States?"

An American soldier and two native Filipino policemen guard an entrance to Intramuros,  Manila.  PHOTO was taken in late 1898.

Meanwhile, by 10:00 p.m., 10,000 American troops were in Intramuros; the 2nd Oregon Volunteers guarded its 9 entrances. General Greene marched his 2nd Brigade around Intramuros into Binondo district.

Audience room in the Malacañan Palace at San Miguel district, Manila.

The 1st California Volunteers were sent east to the fashionable district of San Miguel and took over Malacañan Palace, official residence of the Spanish governor-general.

1st Colorado Volunteers marching in Manila

The 1st Colorado Volunteers were sent into Tondo district and the 1st Nebraska  Volunteers were established on the north shore of the Pasig river. General MacArthur's 1st Brigade patrolled Ermita and Malate districts.

1st Nebraska Volunteers in formation near their quarters at Binondo, Manila, 1898.

Maj. Gen. Wesley Merritt and Brig. Gen. Francis Greene inspecting Fort San Antonio de Abad after the battle.

On Aug. 17, 1898, General Merritt received the following reply from General Corbin:

"The President directs that there must be no joint occupation with the insurgents. The United States in the possession of Manila City, Manila Bay, and harbor must preserve the peace and protect persons and property within the territory occupied by their military and naval forces. The insurgents and all others must recognize the military occupation and authority of the United States and the cessation of hostilities proclaimed by the President. Use whatever means in your judgment are necessary to this end. All law-abiding people must be treated alike."

The Americans then told Aguinaldo bluntly that his army would be fired upon if it crossed into Intramuros.

The Filipinos were infuriated at being denied triumphant entry into their own capital. The hot-headed Filipino generals thought it was time to strike at the Americans, but Aguinaldo stayed calm and refused to be pushed into a new war. However, relations continued to deteriorate.

A US soldier is photographed beside a stack of cannonballs near the Santa Lucia gate of Intramuros district, Manila.

A modern Spanish Krupp gun, 1898.

Spanish POWs held by the Americans in Manila

Spanish POWs held by the Americans in Manila

Spanish POWs held by the Americans in Manila

Spanish POWs quartered in Intramuros, Manila, receiving their rations.

Spanish POWs quartered in Intramuros, Manila, receiving their rations.

Spanish soldiers in the southern Philippines awaiting repatriation to Spain; about 3,000 were shipped out

Spanish arms captured by the Americans (20,000 Mausers, 3,000 Remingtons, 18 modern cannon and many of the obsolete pattern)

Original caption:  "American troops guarding the bridge over the river Pasig on the afternoon of the surrender."

US troops on the Escolta, Manila; not too far from here, on Calle Lacoste in nearby Santa Cruz district, an American guard shot and killed a seven-year-old Filipino boy for taking a banana from a Chinese fruit vendor.

Two American soldiers pose with their .45-70 Springfield Trapdoor rifles. Photo was taken at the Centro Artistico Fotografico ("Photographic Arts Center") in Manila in late 1898.

Graves of American soldiers killed in Manila. The "mock" Battle of Manila was not entirely bloodless. Spanish soldiers who were not privy to the "script" put up serious resistance at a blockhouse close to the city and in a few other areas. Six Americans died while the Spanish suffered  49 killed and 100 wounded. Overall, 17 Americans were killed fighting the Spaniards, 11 on July 31, August 1-2 and August 5 in skirmishes at Malate district.

4th US Regular Infantry Regiment encampment at the Luneta, Manila

V. Tokizama, Japanese military attache to the Philippines with Colonel Harry Clay Kessler (CO, 1st Montana Volunteers),  Major Robert H. Fitzhugh and 1Lt. William B. Knowlton; photo taken in Manila, 1898

A squad of American soldiers is enthralled by the Filipino "national sport" of cockfighting

The Ayuntamiento in Intramuros district, Manila.   Photo taken in 1899.

Americans in Manila.  Photo taken in 1898.

The arrogance of the Americans and their continuing presence unsettled the Filipinos.

The 1st South Dakota Volunteer Infantry Regiment at rest at the Presidio, San Francisco. The regiment, consisting of 46 officers and 983 enlisted men, was commanded by Col. Alfred S. Frost. It left the Presidio on July 23, 1898 and arrived at Cavite Province, in Manila Bay, on Aug. 31, 1898.

The 38th US Volunteer Infantry Regiment upon their arrival at Manila, Dec. 26, 1899.

Questions on their actual motives surfaced with the continuous arrival of American reinforcements, when there was no Spanish enemy left to fight.

13th Minnesota Volunteers, acting as police, raid an opium den and arrest 4 Chinese addicts.  Photo was taken in Manila in late 1898.

It did not take long for the Filipinos to realize the genuine intentions of the United States: the Americans were in the islands to stay.

Soon after the Spanish surrender at Manila, Pvt. Fred Hinchman, US Army Corps of Engineers, wrote his family about the Filipino soldiers: "We shall now have to disarm and scatter these abominable, semi-human monkeys." [John Durand, The Boys: 1st North Dakota Volunteers in the Philippines, Puzzlebox Press, 2010, p. 132].

Aug. 24, 1898: First Filipino-American Fatal Encounter

Calle del Arsenal, the main street in Cavite Nuevo, Cavite Province. Photo was taken in 1897.

On Wednesday, Aug. 24, 1898, the first fatal encounter between the Filipinos and Americans took place in Cavite Nuevo (now Cavite City), Cavite Province. The U.S. Army put it down as a street fight.

Pvt. George H. Hudson of Battery B, Utah Light Artillery Regiment, was killed; Cpl. William Q. Anderson of the same unit, and four troopers of the 4th U.S. Cavalry Regiment were wounded.

On Saturday, Aug. 27, 1898, the New York Times reported:

Internal Filipino communications reported that the Utah artillerymen were drunk at the time.

American soldiers and Filipino civilians at Cavite Nuevo. Photo was taken in 1898-1899.

American soldiers and Filipino children at Cavite Nuevo, 1898-1899.

Aug. 29, 1898: General Otis Becomes New Commander of 8th US Army Corps, Orders Philippine Army To Leave Manila

Major Generals Wesley Merritt (6th from Right) and Elwell S. Otis (4th from Right), and their staffs in front of Malacañan Palace, San Miguel district, Manila

Maj. Gen. Elwell S. Otis replaced Merritt on Aug. 29, 1898. Ten days later, on September 8,  he demanded that Filipino troops evacuate Manila beyond the demarcation lines marked on a map that he furnished Aguinaldo. Otis claimed that the Peace Protocol signed in Washington D.C. on August 12 between Spain and the United States gave the latter the right to occupy the bay, harbor and city of Manila. He ordered Aguinaldo to comply within a week or he would face forcible action. Aguinaldo's emissaries asked Otis to withdraw his ultimatum; when he refused, they requested him to moderate his language in a second letter. The American commander agreed.

Maj. Gen. Elwell S. Otis and his staff on the veranda of Malacañan Palace, San Miguel district, Manila

On September 13, Otis wrote Aguinaldo an amended letter:

A Filipino regiment preparing to leave Manila

On September 15, about 2,000 Filipino soldiers marched out of the zones. They did not know of the ultimatum, but were told about the succeeding "friendly request". Their bands played American airs and they cheered for the Americans as they withdrew.

Otis acceded to Aguinaldo's request that Gen. Pio del Pilar (RIGHT) and his troops continue to occupy Paco district. First, Aguinaldo asserted that Paco was traditionally outside the jurisdiction of Manila. Second, he was unable to discipline  Del Pilar who would surely refuse to move out in response to his orders. [The Americans called Pio del Pilar a "fire-eater".]

In any case, he would gradually withdraw his troops from the command of Del Pilar, until his force was too small to be threatening.

[Twenty-five days later, on October 10, Brig. Gen. Thomas M. Anderson submitted to the Adjutant-general, US 8th Army Corps, an official complaint against Gen. Pio del Pilar:


"I have the honor to report that yesterday, the 9th instant, while proceeding up the Pasig River, on the steam launch Canacao, with three officers of my staff, the American flag flying over the boat. I was stopped by an armed Filipino guard and informed that we could go no farther. Explaining that we were an unarmed party of American officers out upon an excursion, we were informed that, by orders given two days before, no Americans, armed or unarmed. were allowed to pass up the Pasig River without a special permit from President Aguinaldo.

"I demanded to see the written order, and it was brought and shown me. It was an official letter signed by Pio del Pilar. division general, written in Tagalo and stamped with what appeared to be an official seal. It purported to be issued by the authority of the president of the revolutionary government, and forbade Americans, either armed or unarmed, from passing up the Pasig River. It was signed by Pilar himself.

"As this is a distinctly hostile act. I beg leave to ask how far we are to submit to this kind of interference.

"It is respectfully submitted that whether this act of Pilar was authorized or not by the assumed insurgent government, it should, in any event, be resented."]

Aguinaldo's headquarters at Bacoor, Cavite Province. Photo was taken in 2006. Source:www.flickr.com/photos/15452709@N00/292183090

Aguinaldo transferred his headquarters and the seat of his government from Bacoor (ABOVE) to the inland town of Malolos, 21 miles  (34 km)  north of Manila on the line of the railroad. Here he was out of range of the guns of the US fleet, and in a naturally strong position.

The first American newspaper in the Philiipines, The American Soldier, reports on corruption under the old Spanish regime. This issue came out on Nov. 5, 1898.

Jan. 23, 1899: Inauguration of the First Philippine Republic

Feb. 9, 1899: Battle of San Roque, Cavite Province

San Roque (ABOVE, in 1899) lies about 22 miles (35 km) southwest from Manila by road; a narrow artificial causeway about 600 yards (meters) in length  separates it from mainland Cavite Province. [LEFT, 1896 map].

It adjoins the Cavite navy yard that fell under American control after the battle of Manila Bay on May 1, 1898. (In 1903, the town of San Roque was merged into Cavite Nuevo, which, in turn became Cavite City; San Roque has been reduced to a district).

On the night of February 4, word reached the Americans at the yard  that the Filipinos had attacked US forces in Manila . 

The call to arms was sounded. From across the bay the thunder of guns and the roll of volleys told that the conflict was on. The Americans  expected that the Filipinos would attack them from San Roque, but they did not.

51st Iowa Volunteers in the Philippines, 1899

Immediately thereafter sentries and outposts were established at the outskirts of San Roque by a battalion of the 51st Iowa Volunteer Infantry Regiment under the command of Col. John T. Loper.

American outpost at San Roque, Cavite Province, 1899.

American outpost at the causeway separating San Roque and mainland Cavite Province

Batteries were placed opposite the approach from the causeway separating San Roque and Cavite Nuevo. Gatling guns were placed on bastions, and field pieces were trained on the blockhouses of the Filipinos, while the gunboats Manila and Callao were anchored close inshore in readiness to lend assistance to the Americans in case it was needed.

Filipino entrenchments commanding the causeway connecting the Cavite peninsula with the mainland

On the afternoon of February 8, the Americans sent 2Lt. John A. Glass, of the 1st Battalion of California Heavy Artillery (California National Guards), with a flag of truce and an escort to the Filipino commander, General Salvador Estrella, and presented him with Commodore George Dewey’s demand that the Filipinos evacuate San Roque; unless the demand was complied with before nine o'clock of the following morning, the town would be bombarded.

San Roque burns

On February 9, at 7;30 a.m., a party of three, headed by the Mayor of San Roque, came over the American line and asked for further time. Commodore Dewey, who was ashore, refused, and the delegation immediately returned. A white flag was then hoisted over a Filipino blockhouse, but it was a bluff, intended to draw the advance of American troops into a trap. Shortly thereafter the town was set ablaze by the Filipinos.

Gun. No. 3 of the California Heavy Artillery shelling Filipino positions at 1,200 yards (meters), San Roque, Cavite Province.

American troops in San Roque fighting

Two battalions of the 51st Iowa Volunteers, the Wyoming Light Battery and the Nevada Cavalry, with Batteries A and D of the California Heavy Artillery were dispatched across the causeway. Every passage through San Roque was a seething mass of flames, and in order to gain entrance to the town it was necessary for the Americans to flank it by moving along the seashore. The Americans fought their way through the flames of the burning town in pursuit of the retreating Filipinos, dragging their heavy guns by hand, and skirmishing whenever the opportunity afforded.

Fortifications at San Roque built by the Filipinos

Americans in San Roque battle

Filipino POWs at San Roque

Ruins of San Roque

Burr Ellis, of Frazier, Valley, California, narrated what he did in San Roque, Cavite. He wrote:

"They did not commence fighting over here for several days after the war commenced. Dewey gave them till nine o’clock one day to surrender, and that night they all left but a few out to their trenches, and those that they left burned up the town, and when the town commenced burning, the troops were ordered in as far as possible and said,  'Kill all we could find.'  I ran off from the hospital and went ahead with the scouts. And you bet, I did not cross the ocean for the fun there was in it, so the first one I found, he was in a house, down on his knees fanning a fire, trying to burn the house, and I pulled my old Long Tom to my shoulder and left him to burn with the fire, which he did. I got his knife, and another jumped out of the window and ran, and I brought him to the ground like a jack-rabbit. I killed seven that I know of, and one more, I am almost sure of: I shot ten shots at him running and knocked him down, and that evening the boys out in front of our trenches now found one with his arm shot off at the shoulder and dead as h____. I had lots of fun that morning...."

The Wichita Daily Eagle, Feb. 10, 1899, Page 1

American guard mount at San Roque, 1899.

American officers in command at San Roque, 1899.

American troops in possession of Teatro Caviteño in Cavite Nuevo (now Cavite City). The theater was Emilio Aguinaldo's first military headquarters upon his return from Hong Kong on May 19, 1898. It was here that the Philippine national flag was hoisted for the first time on May 28, 1898 after the Filipinos defeated the Spaniards in the battle of Alapan, Imus, Cavite. The town of San Roque was merged into Cavite Nuevo in 1903.

The New York Times, issue of Feb. 10, 1899

Feb. 10, 1899: Battle of Caloocan

Brig. Gen. Arthur C. MacArthur, Jr. (central figure) and staff near Caloocan. At extreme left is Capt. Charles G. Sawtelle Jr., Asst. Quartermaster; 2nd from left is Colonel (later Brig. Gen.) Frederick Funston; 3rd from right is Maj. Putnam Bradlee Strong, Asst. Adjutant General; and 2nd from right is Maj. John Mallory, Inspector General.

After capturing La Loma, Brig. Gen. Arthur C. MacArthur, Jr. pushed toward Caloocan, an important railroad center 11 miles (17 km) north of Manila. For several days, trainloads of Filipino soldiers were seen landing in the town.

Old Spanish gun mounted by the Filipinos near Caloocan to control the railroad between Manila and Malolos.

It also barred the way to Malolos, Aguinaldo's capitol. General Antonio Luna together with a Belgian-trained engineer, Jose Alejandrino had constructed trenches to defend Caloocan. 

La Loma Church:  General MacArthur's headquarters before the Battle of Caloocan. PHOTO was taken in February 1899.

Brig. Gen. Arthur C. MacArthur, Jr. directing the American advance on Caloocan.

20th Kansas Volunteers digging trenches just before the engagement at Caloocan

1st South Dakota Volunteers and a section of a light battery behind entrenchments just before the battle of Caloocan

Original caption:  "The Montana Regiment Waiting The Order To Advance On Caloocan."

Original caption: "Idaho volunteers near Caloocan, waiting to be called to the Front"

Edward Stratemayer in his article entitled UNDER OTIS IN THE PHILIPPINES described the capture of Caloocan: "On to the town! was the next cry and into the city they advanced, the Filipinos contesting every step stubbornly but unsuccessfully. A stand was taken at a church and at several public and private buildings; but the blood of the Americans was not up and they forced the rebels out, in many cases at the point of the bayonet. Compelled to give up the city, the Filipinos tried their best to burn the main portion of the town, and soon the smaller houses were a mass of flames. An attempt was also made to burn the church and the city hall, but here the Americans interferred and many of the rebels were caught and taken prisoner. The general advance had begun at one o'clock in the afternoon. At half past five, Old Glory was swung to the breeze from the flagstaff of the city hall and rebel sway in Caloocan became a thing of the past. When the smoke of war cleared out, the inhabitants of the town found their homes in ashes, the buildings razed to the ground and only the Casa Tribuna, the church, and the convent remained standing."

Original caption:  "The trenches before Caloocan afforded the best test of soldierly nerve under the strain of constant expectation of attack. The guns are here being placed in position for the coming battle. The defense is admirable."

US Battery at Caloocan

1899 painting, drawn from eyewitness accounts, by G.W. Peters. Title:  "The Battle Before Caloocan, February 10, 1899--View from the Chinese church".  Maj. Gen. Arthur C. MacArthur, Jr., is the khaki-clad officer with binoculars; the battery of Utah Artillery is on the middle foreground, while the 10th Pennsylvania Volunteers occupy the ground  behind the wall. This print came from the book, "Harper's Pictorial History of the War with Spain", published in 1899.

Describing the Caloocan battle, Charles Bremer, of Minneapolis, Kansas, wrote:

"Company I had taken a few prisoners, and stopped. The colonel ordered them up in to line time after time, and finally sent Captain Bishop back to start them. There occurred the hardest sight I ever saw. They had four prisoners, and didn’t know what to do with them. They asked Captain Bishop what to do, and he said: 'You know the orders', and four natives fell dead.”

Capt. David S. Elliot, of the 20th Kansas Volunteers, said: "Talk about war being 'hell,' this war beats the hottest estimate ever made of that locality. Caloocan was supposed to contain seventeen thousand inhabitants. The Twentieth Kansas swept through it, and now Caloocan contains not one living native. Of the buildings, the battered walls of the great church and dismal prison alone remain. The village of Maypaja, where our first fight occurred on the night of the fourth, had five thousand people on that day—now not one stone remains upon top of another. You can only faintly imagine this terrible scene of desolation."

Original caption:  "The Advance On Caloocan --- On The Firing-Line Of The Kansas Volunteers."

Volley firing by the 20th Kansas Volunteers, 1899

20th Kansas Volunteers advancing across an open field, 1899

Arthur Minkler, of the 20th Kansas Volunteers: ""We advanced four miles and we fought every inch of the way;... saw twenty-five dead insurgents in one place and twenty-seven in another, besides a whole lot of them scattered along that I did not count.... It was like hunting rabbits; an insurgent would jump out of a hole or the brush and run; he would not get very far.... I suppose you are not interested in the way we do the job. We do not take prisoners. At least the Twentieth Kansas do not".

During the battle, the Kawit Battalion from Cavite refused to attack when given the order by Gen. Antonio Luna. Because of this, he disarmed and relieved them of their duties. Soldiers from this same Cavite battalion later assassinated Luna in Cabanatuan, Nueva Ecija on June 5, 1899.

Igorot POWs at Caloocan

The Igorots --- hardy mountaineers from the Cordilleras of northern Luzon island---sent a contingent of men to fight the Americans at Caloocan. The warriors were armed only with spears, axes, and shields.They were commanded by Maj. Federico Isabelo "Belong" Abaya (LEFT), a native of Candon, Ilocos Sur Province. He was a member of the Espiritu de Candon, a revolutionary group in Candon. On March 25, 1898, he led the so-called Ikkis ti Kandon (Cry of Candon), drove away the Spaniards from the town and beheaded the Spanish parish priest (Fr. Rafael Redondo) and two visiting friars. He served in the Philippine Army under General Manuel Tinio, and later became guerilla commander in southern Ilocos under Col. Juan Villamor of Bangued, Abra Province

Abaya was born in 1854 to a well-to-do family and died in battle on May 3, 1900. He and 10 men were at the mountain village of Guilong, Galimuyod, 11 miles east of Candon, when they encountered a 30-man patrol of Company G, 33rd Infantry Regiment of United States Volunteers (USV). The Americans were led by 2Lt. Donald C. McClelland. Abaya died with 2 of his men and 3 were captured. There were no casualties on the American side. [Guilong has been renamed "Abaya" in honor of the hero].

Igorot POWs at Caloocan

The Igorots soon fell out with the Philippine army and became U.S. allies, acting as guides for American troops in the rugged highlands of northern Luzon.  A Tingguian Igorot, Januario Galut, led U.S. troops to a position where they could surround and defeat the forces of Gen. Gregorio del Pilar at Tirad Pass on Dec. 2, 1899.

Many of the Igorots who served in Aguinaldo's army later joined the colonial Philippine Constabulary.

The mortal combat at Caloocan killed Luna's Chief of Staff, Major Bautista of the Territorial Militia, and Captain Licero of Malolos.

The Annual Report of the U.S. War Department listed 5 American dead and 45 wounded; 200 Filipinos killed and 800 wounded.

10th Pennsylvania Volunteers atop captured Filipino blockhouse

Original caption: "Flags of truce in the streets of Caloocan"

(LEFT) Caloocan Church after bombardment by Admiral George Dewey's fleet.  (RIGHT) Americans set up a field telegraph station inside the church

Caloocan Church, after the battle.  The American photographer wrote:  "Caloocan, six miles north of Manila, bombarded by guns of the 'Charleston' and 'Monadnock' and leveled to the ground by fire, was a sorry sight as the Twentieth Kansas regiment advanced. The insurgent dead lay in great numbers for it was here that the Kansans won their first great victory. What was a prosperous town was in a few moments wiped out of existence. The church was afterwards used as headquarters."

A US soldier signals from the tower of Caloocan church to Manila Bay, spelling out a message to the monitor Monadnock over the intervening Filipino lines

Original caption: "View of Caloocan, showing burned district"

US army ambulances at Caloocan

Conveying wounded American soldier, February 1899

Trainload of dead and wounded Americans at Caloocan

Original caption:  "On the road to Caloocan --- the aftermath. Photograph by Lieut. C.F. O'Keefe, U.S.A."

Dead Filipino soldier at Caloocan

Filipinos killed by the Utah Light Battery at Caloocan.  Fred D. Sweet, of the Utah Light Battery:  "The scene reminded me of the shooting of jack-rabbits in Utah, only the rabbits sometimes got away, but the insurgents did not."

Theodore Conley, 20th Kansas Regiment:  "Talk about dead Indians! Why, they are lying everywhere. The trenches are full of them...There is not a feature of the whole miserable business that a patriotic American citizen, one who loves to read of the brave deeds of the American colonists in the splendid struggle for American independence, can look upon with complacency, much less with pride. This war is reversing history. It places the American people and the government of the United States in the position occupied by Great Britain in 1776. It is an utterly causeless and defenseless war, and it should be abandoned by this government without delay. The longer it is continued, the greater crime it becomes—a crime against human liberty as well as against Christianity and civilization..."

Men of Company B, 1st Idaho Volunteer Infantry Regiment, 1899

Americans with captured Filipino smooth-bore cannon at Caloocan

The station at Caloocan, on the Manila to Dagupan railroad, captured by the Americans on Feb. 10, 1899.

Train captured from the Filipinos at Caloocan. The Americans secured 5 engines, 50 passenger coaches, and 100 freight cars. Photo was actually taken shortly before the Battle of Quingua, Bulacan Province, on April 23, 1899

The Atlanta Constitution of Georgia reports on the capture of Caloocan, issue of Feb. 11, 1899

Feb. 17, 1899: Founding of Philippine Red Cross

Emilio Aguinaldo's first wife was Hilaria del Rosario  (LEFT, 1898 photo) of Imus, Cavite Province, whom he married on Jan. 1, 1896.  She was born in 1877. They had five children: Miguel, Carmen, Emilio Jr., Maria and Cristina.

Hilaria organized the Hijas de la Revolucion (Daughters of the Revolution), which later became the Asociacion Nacional de la Cruz Roja (National Association of the Red Cross), considered a kind of precursor of the present Philippine National Red Cross.

On Feb. 17, 1899, the Malolos Republic approved the Constitution of the National Association of the Red Cross. The Republic appointed Hilaria del Rosario Aguinaldo as President of the Association. In its first five months it had thirteen chapters. She and others helped to organize and distribute the needed food and medicines to wounded Filipino soldiers.

On Oct. 5, 1899, Mrs. Aguinaldo spoke to the soldiers assembled in Tarlac:

"...Were it not a shocking thing for us to wear trousers and to carry rifles ... we [the women] members of the Philippine Red Cross -- would aid you in the struggle and die by your side, for what would our lives amount to if we should still have to live in slavery? Though I am a weak woman, I can assure you that my prayer is for all the Filipino people..."

She accompanied her husband in his long and arduous trek to northern Luzon, from Nov. 13, 1899 in Bayambang, Pangasinan, until Dec. 25, 1899 in Talubin, Bontoc, Mountain Province; on that Christmas day, Emilio Aguinaldo, wishing to spare the 5 women in his entourage from further hardships (Hilaria, Aguinaldo's sister, Col. Manuel Sityar's wife and Col. Jose Leyba's 2 sisters) ordered Colonel Sityar and another officer to accompany the women and surrender to the Americans in Talubin. Hilaria was reunited with her husband soon after his capture by the Americans on March 23, 1901. 

Hilaria and son Miguel.  Photos taken in 1901.

Hilaria del Rosario Aguinaldo died of tuberculosis in Kawit, Cavite on March 6, 1921.

A view of the native hut used as a hospital during the Philippine-American War by the International Red Cross Society

Francis A. Blake, of California, in charge of the Red Cross, wrote after a battle:

"I never saw such execution in my life, and hope never to see such sights as met me on all sides as our little corps passed over the field, dressing wounded. Legs and arms nearly demolished; total decapitation; horrible wounds in chests and abdomens, showing the determination of our soldiers to kill every native in sight. The Filipinos did stand their ground heroically, contesting every inch, but proved themselves unable to stand the deadly fire of our well-trained and eager boys in blue. I counted seventy-nine dead natives in one small field, and learn that on the other side of the river their bodies were stacked up for breastworks."

The War in the Visayas, Feb. 11, 1899 - March 10, 1899

On Feb. 11, 1899, the US First Separate Brigade commanded by Brig. Gen. Marcus P. Miller, West Point Class 1858, invaded Iloilo City (ABOVE, in 1899) on Panay Island. The  defenders were led by General Martin Delgado and Teresa "Nay Isa" Magbanua y Ferraris, the Visayan "Joan of Arc".

Company G., 1st Tennessee Volunteer Infantry Regiment

The brigade consisted of elements of the 1st Tennessee Volunteer Infantry Regiment,  18th US Regular Infantry and 6th US Artilley. The Americans were assisted by several ships from Admiral George Dewey's squadron (the war vessels Baltimore, Boston and Petrel, troop transports Arizona, Newport and St. Paul, and the launches Iloilo and Vicenti). The invasion force totaled 3,322 men.

At 9:30 a.m., Saturday, February 11, the gunboatPetrel and the cruiser Baltimore bombarded the Filipino shore trenches. Forty-eight marines from the Boston and a company from the Petrelwere sent ashore. The Filipinos retreated.

The Filipino soldiers burned Iloilo to prevent the Americans from making it as their base of operations. The Swiss consul's residence was burned. The entire Chinese and native sections of the city were destroyed, but foreign mercantile property escaped with slight damage.

The Semi-Weekly Gazette and Bulletin of Williamsport, Pennsylvania reports on the capture of Iloilo, issue of Feb. 14, 1899.

D. M. Mickle, Tennessee Regiment, at Iloilo:

"The building had been taken possession of by a United States officer, and he looted it to a finish. I suspected something and followed one of his men to the place. I expected to be jumped on by the officer as soon as I found him there, as I was away from my post, but it seems he was afraid I would give him away; in fact, we were both afraid of each other. He was half drunk, and every time he saw me look at anything he would say, "Tennessee, do you like that? Well, put it in your pocket"........The house was a fine one, and richly furnished, but had been looted to a finish. The contents of every drawer had been emptied on the floor. You have no idea what a mania for destruction the average man has when the fear of the law is removed. I have see them—old sober business men too—knock chandeliers and plate-glass mirrors to pieces just because they couldn’t carry them off. It is such a pity."

Jaro, Iloilo:  Gordon's Scouts from Rhode Island.  Photo taken in 1899.  The soldiers actually belonged to Company G, 18th U.S. Infantry Regiment (Regulars); the company commander was Capt. Walter H. Gordon.

On February 14, the town of Santa Barbara was captured by the Americans. Next they captured Oton, Mandurriao, and Jaro.

The San Francisco Call, issue of Feb. 26, 1899

American forces occupied Cebu on February 22 and Bacolod on Negros Island on March 10. 

Before the Fil-Am War broke out, General Leandro Fullon was appointed by Emilio Aguinaldo as commanding general of all Filipino forces in the Visayas. On Sept. 6, 1898 he left Cavite at the head of an expeditionary force to Panay Island.  He arrived in Pandan, Antique Province, on Sept. 21, 1898 with 140 officers and 340 men. Together with Generals Ananias Diokno (from Luzon) and Martin Delgado (from Iloilo), they led Filipino troops against Spanish forces under General Diego de los Rios.

Throughout the conflict with the Americans, Fullon urged military leaders on the island--both from Luzon and Panay-- to remain united. There was tension between the Luzon  troops and those indigenous to the Visayas. The short-lived Malolos government had feeble authority over the revolutionary movements in the Visayas and Mindanao.

The Provisional Revolutionary Government of the Visayas and Mindanao, established on Nov. 17, 1898 in Sta. Barbara, Iloilo, was fuelled by federalist tendencies. These clashed with the unitary and centralized tendencies of the Malolos Congress where Tagalogs overwhelmingly outnumbered representatives from other regions.

The Visayans resented attempts by Malolos to assert its authority. The Luzon force was regarded by the Visayan revolutionaries, led by the Visayan supremo, Gen. Martin Delgado, as an ''invasion'' force.

Fullon surrendered to the Americans on March 22, 1901. After the civil government was organized, he was appointed governor of Antique on April 15, 1901, a post that he held until he died on Oct. 16, 1904. Fullon was born in Hamtik, Antique on March 13, 1873.

Ananias Diokno was born on Jan. 22, 1860 in Taal, Batangas Province. He distinguished himself against the Spaniards in the Batangas-Laguna-Tayabas zone. 

On April 28, 1899 President Emilio Aguinaldo appointed him as the civil and military governor of Capiz Province. He undertook guerrilla warfare against the Americans on Panay Island. 

On March 18, 1901, Capt. Peter Murray, 18th US Infantry and 1Lt. Frank C. Bolles, 6th US Infantry, with detachments, located Diokno atBarrio Dalipdan, Capiz. Diokno was wounded and captured; two of his men were killed and 3 captured.

In 1916,  the Americans offered him the directorship of the Bureau of Agriculture, but he refused. He died on Nov. 2, 1922.

Ananias Diokno was the grandfather of Jose "Pepe" Wright Diokno, famed nationalist, human rights advocate, CPA and Bar Topnother, lawyer, secretary of justice and senator, who died of cancer in 1987 at the age of 65.

Martin Teofilo Delgado (RIGHT) was born on Nov. 11, 1858 in Sta. Barbara, Iloilo, the second child of a rich and aristocratic Spanish mestizo family. He finished his early schooling at Sta. Barbara Parochial School. Later, he enrolled at the Seminario de San Vicente Ferrer in Jaro. For further studies, he enrolled at the Ateneo Municipal in Manila and obtained his diploma as a school teacher. After finishing his studies in Manila. he returned to his hometown and taught in a public school for some time. 

Shortly after Commodore George Dewey had smashed the Spanish fleet at Manila Bay on May 1, 1898 and blockaded the capital, the hard-pressed Spanish colonial government  organized Filipino volunteer militia in the different regions of the Philippines. General Ricardo Monet, the Politico-Military Governor of Iloilo Province, appointed Martin Delgado as captain and commander of the 125-strong Voluntarios in Sta. Barbara.

Delgado and his men turned around and joined the revolution against Spain. 

On Nov. 17, 1898, at the plaza of Santa Barbara, Delgado proclaimed the Provisional Revolutionary Government of the Visayas and Mindanao. He raised the Philippine flag sent by General Emilio Aguinaldo. It was the first time that the Filipino national flag was hoisted outside of Luzon Island. When the flag reached the top of the bamboo pole, the air reverberated with cries of  Viva Filipinas! Fuera España! Viva Independencia!  The band struck up the Marcha Libertador composed by General Delgado's brother Posidio.

The provisional government was later replaced by a Politico-Military Government on Nov. 23, 1898, composed only of the Visayas, because the Visayan leaders finally preferred instead, a federal arrangement composed of --Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao, as a logical substitute because of its indigenous elements.

With the merger on Dec. 2, 1898 of the Independent Republic of Negros and the Cantonal Government of Bohol (established in August-1898); the Panay government that included Romblon (part of Capiz), based in Iloilo was renamed Federal Republic of the Visayas, patterned after the U.S. Federal and Cantonal government of the Swiss Confederation.

On April 28, 1899 President Emilio Aguinaldo abolished the Federal Republic and appointed Delgado as the civil and military governor of  Iloilo Province under the central Philippine government. He waged guerrilla warfare against the Americans on Panay Island.  

He surrendered in Jaro, Iloilo on Feb. 2, 1901.

General Martin Delgado (SEATED, CENTER) as Governor of Iloilo Province.  Photo was taken in 1903.

The Americans appointed Delgado as the first governor of Iloilo Province in May 1901 and served until 1904.

He became Mayor of Sta. Barbara.  Delgado died in Culion island on Nov. 12, 1918.

April  2006:  Iloilo Governor Niel D. Tupas, Sr., greets General Martin Delgado's immediate kin, Leticia Delgado and Martin Delgado III, during ceremonies honoring Iloilo's past governors  At extreme right is Iloilo First Lady Myrna Causing Tupas

Teresa "Nay Isa" Magbanua y Ferraris, "Visayan Joan of Arc", was born in Pototan, Iloilo on Oct. 13, 1868. She studied at the Colegio de San Jose in Jaro, Iloilo; in 1885, she was sent to Manila and enrolled at Colegio de Santa Rosa and then atColegio de Santa Catalina to train as a teacher. She was a classmate of Dona Aurora Aragon, later the first lady of President Manuel Quezon of the Commonwealth. Teresa finally obtained a teacher's certificate from the Colegio de Dona Cecilia in 1894. She taught at several schools in the province of Panay.When she married Alejandro Baldero, a rich landowner from Sara, Iloilo, she gave up her teaching career to work on the farm. While on the farm, she learned the rough ways of farm life, learning how to ride a horse and fire a pistol. By then however, the Philippine revolution had started and two of her brothers had become officers in the revolutionary army.

She joined the revolutionary forces at the age of 28. In the battlefield, she bravely led men soldiers. Her unit won the battle of Sap-ong near Sara, Iloilo. The commander of the Revolutionary foces in the Visayas, General Martin Teofilo Delgado, commended her bravery and military abilities and entrusted her leadership in many military encounters throughout Panay island. Nay Isa fought the Americans in the Battle of Iloilo City on Feb. 11, 1899. No official record exists that proves Aguinaldo had promoted Magbanua to the rank of general. But her troops considered and addressed her as such. After the fall of the Filipinos' regional headquarters in Sta. Barbara, Magbanua shifted to guerrilla tactics. Her brother Elias died at age 19 from the bullet of a Filipino guide working with the Americans. In 1900, she disbanded her unit and surrendered.

Nay Isa remained childless and was widowed shortly after the outbreak of the war with the Japanese. Teresa sold all her property in Iloilo to help finance the guerrilla forces. She migrated to Mindanao and lived with her sister, Maria, in Pagadian, Zamboanga del Sur. Here she would die in August 1947 at the age of 78, with the rare distinction of having fought all of her country's colonizers.

Iloilo in the late 1890's

Iloilo, 1898: Calle Real (now J.M. Basa St.)

Iloilo:  Street scenes, 1899.

Iloilo, Feb. 11, 1899: Original caption: "The house on the left side of the street remains intact after the American invasion of Iloilo; the house on the right was not as lucky."

American soldiers on Panay Island, 1899.

Iloilo: Americans lined up for mess at their headquarters kitchen. Photo taken in 1899.

Iloilo:  The cathedral of the Nuestra Señora de la Candelaria (Our Lady of the Candles) as it looked in 1899; built in 1864, it was destroyed by an earthquake in  1948 and rebuilt in 1956.

Cebu town in the late 1890's

Chinese shoemakers in Cebu. Photo was taken in 1899.

1900: Cebu Provincial Capitol Building

1900: The Parian (Chinese) district, Cebu town (became a City in 1937)

1900: A street in Cebu town (became a City in 1937)

American soldiers at an outpost; photo undated and location in the Philippines not specified

Second Battle of Manila, Feb. 22-23, 1899

After pushing back the Filipino lines in the first battle of Manila and the suburbs on Feb. 4-10, 1899, Maj. Gen. Elwell S. Otis waited for more reinforcements from the United States.

The San Francisco Call, issue of Feb. 22, 1899

Aguinaldo used the lull to reorganize and discuss plans for taking Manila. The districts of Tondo, Santa Cruz, and Malate were to be set on fire.

Harper's Weekly,  April 24, 1899 edition, drawn by G.W. Peters

Church in Santa Cruz district, Manila

The attack occurred on February 22. At around 8:00 p.m., fire broke out in the wealthy quarter of Santa Cruz district (during the 19th-century, the parian neighborhood of Santa Cruz commanded the highest in rental prices, compared to those in other districts of Manila. Businessmen, especially the foreigners, preferred the structures of Santa Cruz, especially those warehouses along the Pasig River, which facilitated the swifter delivery of their merchandise through the cascos or boats that plied the city’s esteros).

John Bass, a correspondent from Harper's Magazine, describes the event as "Manila's Night of Terror."

Escolta, the principal business street in Manila. Photo taken in 1899

Fire spread towards the Escolta business area. John Bass reported: "Someone was cutting the hose. The firemen were suspected. At last a soldier caught a Malay bending over the hose and prodding it with a large knife. The soldier bringing his rifle down with a violent blow, broke the native's back."

Feb. 23, 1899: A house in Tondo set on fire by Filipinos. The U.S. Army reported that 60 buildings of stone, 150 substantial wooden structures with iron roofs, and about 8,000nipa houses were destroyed.

Original caption:   "Driving the insurgents out of the burning nipa section of Tondo district."

Another fire broke out in Tondo. Luna's men led by Col. Francisco "Paco" Roman had infiltrated the rear of the American lines and pushed towards Tondo. Another element from Roman's group rushed deep into Calle Jolo (now Juan Luna St.).

Manila burns:  US soldiers firing at Filipinos, Feb. 23, 1899

The fire, the blare of guerrilla bugles and the shooting confused the Americans. They made their stand on Calle Iris near the Bilibid Prison and waited for reinforcements.

Chinese quarters and business street in Manila. Photo taken in 1898 or 1899.

By now the Binondo market was on fire, but Lucio Lucas --another Luna officer--and his men failed to reach the Meisic police station, his prime objective ((Meisic derived from "Maintsik", which today is Manila’s Chinatown).               

The Americans had learned of the planned attack earlier, and were prepared to meet him. Lucas's men retreated towards Calle Azcarraga.  In hand-to-hand combat they broke through the American detachment there and disappeared into the night.

The Americans counter-attacked the next day with fresh troops and gunboats. They pushed the Filipinos into Tondo (LEFT, dead Filipinos on a Tondo street). At the tramway station, Paco Roman's men resisted until late in the morning. Others were able to hold a blockhouse but had to withdraw for lack of ammunition.

On February 24, General Luna reported to Aguinaldo that had it not been for the refusal of the Cavite soldiers to attack when ordered, "our victory would have been complete." General Otis, horrified by Luna's bold plan, admitted that the attack was "successful in its inception and primary stages." Aguinaldo took propaganda advantage of the small victory even as Luna accused him of holding back the Cavite soldiers (Aguinaldo's provincemates).

The troops composing the US Eighth Army Corps under General Otis's command by this time were of regulars 171 officers and 5,201 enlisted men and of volunteers 667 officers and 14,831 enlisted men, making an aggregate of 838 officers and 20,032 enlisted men.

American photograper's caption: "At the battle of Tondo ---work of Minnesota men"

Original caption:   "An old man killed while picking chicken in the Filipinos' headquarters in Tondo during the insurgent outbreak"

Luna's attack plan, though a good one, failed for lack of coordination and sufficient firepower. General Luna managed to provide artillery support by using a single Krupp breech-loading cannon firing a six-inch projectile weighing 80 pounds. It was manned by Spanish prisoners with MacArthur’s Headquarters at the house of Engineer Horace L. Higgins as target. Higgins was the general manager of the English-owned Manila Railway Company. This singular artillery piece was neutralized by American counter-battery fire.

During the battle in Gagalangin, Tondo, Manila, a German observer, Prince Ludwig von Loewenstein, was accidentally killed by a stray American bullet.

The Annual Report of the U.S. War Department listed 5 Americans killed and 34 wounded; 500 Filipinos killed and wounded.

Original caption: "Minnesota & 23rd Infantry guarding burned district"

Photo published in The St. Paul Globe, Feb. 26, 1899

"Bomberos"  of the Manila Fire Department, Photo taken in 1899. An American artist wrote at the back of this photograph: "Never known to get there on time".

Feb. 23, 1899: Ruins of Tondo

Feb. 23, 1899: Ruins of Tondo; photo includes the American photographer's original caption.

Manila: Terra Basta Street in ruins

Manila, 1899: Market scene outside ruins of old market

Combats between Manila and Lake Laguna de Bay

1899 US Army map of the district between Manila and Lake Laguna de Bay (lower right corner)

With fresh troops from the U.S. mainland, Maj. Gen. Elwell S. Otis ordered the clearing of  the country between Manila and Lake Laguna de Bay, and a push to the north and capture Aguinaldo.

1899: Review of Company I, 12th US Infantry Regiment, at the Luneta, Manila

U.S. troop strength was 20,851 at the start of hostilities on Feb. 4, 1899; the average strength was 40,000 during the 40-month war (peaking in 1900 to 2,367 officers and 71,727 enlisted men). By war's end, a total of 126,468 American soldiers had served in the Philippines. Also, beginning in September 1899 Macabebe Filipinos --- and in the next two years --- Ilocanos, Cagayanos, Boholanos, Cebuanos, Negrenses and Ilonggos were recruited and served as scouts for the US Army. These regional Filipino scout units were integrated and organized as the Philippine Scouts on Feb. 2, 1901. The Philippine Constabulary was inaugurated on Aug. 8, 1901.

The 3 rifles used in the Philippine-American War by US services---Above, the Winchester Lee, used by the Navy and Marine Corps; in the Center, Springfield, used by most of the Volunteers; Below, the Krag Jorgensen, the weapon of the Regulars. PHOTO taken in 1899.

Twenty-six of the 30 American generals who served in the Philippines from 1898 to 1902 had fought in the Indian Wars. Sixteen graduates of the United States Military Academy at West Point died in combat against the Filipinos. Eighty Americans were awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor.

Filipino strength at the start of the war was about 20,000 soldiers with 15,000 rifles. In succeeding months, it ranged between 20,000 - 30,000. The number of rifles dwindled as the war dragged on, as many malfunctioned, or were captured by American troops. Ammunition ran low; the Filipinos were forced to manufacture their own cartridges and powder. The makeshift gunpowder lacked power and released thick black smoke that revealed their positions.

The Filipino infantry was tough and hardy, requiring few supplies, and had demonstrated its competence by easily overrunning Spanish garrisons. However, it was relatively poorly trained and the officer corps was weak.

Worst, among the Filipino military and political leaders, disunity caused divisions, usually along regional lines. Although they faced a common enemy who enjoyed vastly superior military training and resources, they still found time to engage in personal, and often bitter quarrels, with disastrous and tragic consequences to the First Philippine Republic.

This color-tinted photo of US soldiers was taken in 1899, somewhere in Luzon Island.

Original caption: "There goes the American soldier and all Hell can't stop him, P.I."

Two members of a US cavalry unit

Americans bury their dead at a graveyard near Fort San Antonio de Abad, Malate district, Manila

The Virginian-Pilot, Norfolk, Virginia, issue of March 17, 1899, Page 1

Battle of Guadalupe Church, March 13, 1899

Guadalupe Church and Convent before destruction

Brig. Gen. Loyd Wheaton (LEFT)  led five American regiments against Filipino forces entrenched in the area surrounding the church at Guadalupe, San Pedro de Macati (now Makati City).

The official US report listed 3 Americans killed and 25 wounded; it estimated Filipino losses at 200 dead and wounded.

1st California Volunteers positioned near the Guadalupe Convent

US gunboat Laguna de Bay bombards Guadalupe Convent. The side-wheeled steamer used to be a passenger boat that plied the Manila - Lake Laguna de Bay route; Maj. Gen. Elwell S. Otis purchased her from a Spanish firm. Capt. Frank A. Grant of the Utah Volunteer Light Artillery armored the boat and mounted eight guns upon her. The gunboat was about 125 feet long and 37 1/2 feet wide.

Filipinos killed at Guadalupe

Battle of Pateros, March 14, 1899

A battalion of the 1st Washington Volunteer Infantry Regiment under Maj. John J. Weisenburger attacked Pateros on March 14, 1899.

From Taguig, the Americans crossed a channel in cascos and by swimming and stormed the Filipino entrenchments at Pateros. The town took fire and burned. The Filipinos withdrew.

The Americans suffered 1 killed and 5 wounded.

Battle of Pasig, March 15, 1899

Pasig:  Battery A, Utah Volunteer Light Artillery, commanded by Capt. Richard W. Young, West Point Class of 1882.  Brig. Gen. Loyd Wheaton, sitting among the bananas, and Captain Young, at his back, are watching the progress of the advancing American troops.

Brig. Gen. Loyd Wheaton attacked the town of Pasig with a Provisional Brigade consisting of:  a gunboat, 20th Infantry; 22nd Infantry; two battalions 1st Washington Volunteer Infantry; seven companies 2nd Oregon Volunteer Infantry; one platoon 6th Artillery, and three troops 4th Cavalry.   

The Pasig expedition was the first organized campaign against the Filipinos. General Wheaton's instructions were to "drive the enemy beyond Pasig, striking him wherever found".

American losses were 1 killed and 3 wounded. The New York Times reported that the Americans found 106 dead Filipinos and 100 new graves near Pasig, and that the 20th Infantry took 175 prisoners. [A separate American report estimated Filipino dead at 400].

Reserves of the 22nd Infantry Regiment awaiting their call to the firing line. They are taking their rest just before the general advance on Pasig.

The 22nd US Infantry awaiting orders for the general advance upon Pasig. The original black and white photo was color tinted in 1902, but the artist incorrectly gave the soldiers blue uniforms; in fact, they were khaki.

Original caption:  "The wall of fire. Part of the firing line near Pasig, March 15, 1899. It represents volley-firing in clock-like order at the insurgent intrenchments. The picture was taken just before the general advance."  Colorized photo shows 2nd Oregon Volunteers --- armed with 45-70 caliber Springfield "trapdoor" rifles --- correctly portrayed in their blue uniforms.

Skirmish line of 2nd Oregon Volunteers at Pasig

2nd Oregon Volunteers at Battle of Pasig

Original caption:  "This shows effect of first smokeless powder used by Americans in the Philippines. The guns are the old Springfield model. Photograph taken during heat of the action at Pasig. In this instance it is long distance firing."   This is a colorized version of preceding photo of 2nd Oregon Volunteers.

Skirmish line of 1st Washington Volunteers at Pasig

Skirmish line of 1st Washington Volunteers at Pasig

Original caption: "Taking of Pasig --- In the distance to the left the city is seen, and in front the puffs of smoke from the insurgents' rifles, while half way down the open field the American line is returning the fire, being reenforced by others who are hurrying from the boat on the other side of the river. In the background are the reserve troops who have been protecting the advance."

Original caption:  "Driving the insurgents through the jungle near Pasig."

Original caption:  "Driving the insurgents through the jungle near Pasig."

Dead Filipino soldiers at Pasig

St. Paul Daily Globe, St. Paul, Minnesota, issue of March 16, 1899, Page 1

US troops in front of church at Pasig

Another view of the church at Pasig.  American soldiers, barely visible in the photograph, are seen in the lower right corner.

Original caption:  "The Church Saint Sat On By A Washington 'Johnnie', Pasig, P.I."

American bivouac at Pasig, March 1899.

Two Americans guard a bridge on the main highway at Pasig

US troops returning to Manila after the battle of Pasig

Original caption: "The Washington Boys repulsing an attack of Insurrectos on March 26, 1899, at Pasig, P.I."

Following their defeat in the main battle, the Filipinos occasionally harassed the American garrison at Pasig.

Original caption:  "Expecting a Filipino Attack behind the Cemetery Wall, Pasig, Phil. Islds."

Company G of the 1st Washington Volunteers in action at Pasig

Company G of the 1st Washington Volunteers in action at Pasig

Cainta, March 16, 1899

20th US Infantry men returning with their dead; 1899 photo, unspecified location

On March 16, 1899, Maj. William P. Rogers, CO of the 3rd Battalion, 20th US Infantry Regiment, came upon the Filipinos in Cainta, about 1,000 strong, and forced them to retreat. He burned the town. Two Americans were killed and 14 wounded, while the Filipinos suffered about 100 killed and wounded.

Upon the approach of the Americans, Exequiel Ampil, the Presidente Municipal of Cainta and a former agente especial of the Katipunan who had become a pronouncedAmericanista, strongly advised the Filipino soldiers to surrender. Instead, they shot him. Although wounded, Ampil managed to escape. 

But the patriots did not let sleeping dogs lie. 

On March 3, 1902, the New York Times reported: “…Felizardo, at the head of twenty-five men armed with rifles, entered the town of Cainta…and captured the Presidente of Cainta, Señor Ampil, and a majority of the police of the town. Señor Ampil has long been known as an enthusiastic American symphatizer, and it is feared that he may be killed by the enraged Ladrones. A strong force of constabulary has been sent to try to effect his release.” [Timoteo Pasay was the actual leader of the guerilla band that kidnapped Ampil on Feb. 28, 1902].

A village in the town of Morong, Morong Province. PHOTO was taken during the period 1899-1901.

On March 4, 1902, near the hills of Morong town, Ampil found an opportunity to escape. A detachment of constabulary was taken from the garrison at Pasig and stationed at Cainta for his protection. He survived the war.

[ A considerable number of the population of Cainta are descended from Indian soldiers who deserted the British Army when the British briefly occupied the Philippines in 1762 to 1764. These Indian soldiers, called Sepoys, were recruited from among the subjects of the Nawab of Arcot in Madras, India. They settled in Cainta and intermarried or cohabited with the native women. The Sepoy ancestry of Cainta is very visible in contemporary times, particularly in Barrio Dayap near Barangay Sto Nino. Their distinct physical characteristics --- darker skin tone and taller stature --- set them apart from the average Filipino who is primarily of Malay ethnicity, with admixtures of Chinese and Spanish blood. ]

Battle of Taguig, March 18-19, 1899

The 22nd US Regular Infantry Regiment, 1st Washington Volunteers and 2nd Oregon Volunteers, all under the overall command of Brig. Gen. Loyd Wheaton, engaged Filipino troops led by General Pio del Pilar in the town of Taguig. The Americans suffered 3 dead and 17 wounded; Filipino losses were 75 killed in action.

March 19, 1899: Companies D and H, 1st Washington Volunteer Infantry Regiment, firing at Filipinos from behind the stone wall of the church at Taguig

Some US troops form a skirmish line just outside the church compound

Moments later, the rest of the Americans break out from the church compound to  advance across an open field -- Filipinos 800 yards in front.

Original caption:  "The Open Field Over Which The Washington Boys Charged The Filipinos From The Church Tower. Taquig, P.I."

March 19, 1899:  Company H, 1st Washington Volunteers, at Taguig church.

The church at Taguig.   Photo taken in the early 1900s.

Colonel John H. Wholley, Commanding Officer, 1st Washington Volunteer Infantry Regiment; he graduated from the US Military Academy at West Point in 1890.

Gen. Del Pilar distinugished himself in the revolution against Spain. But like most Filipino generals, he fared badly against the better-trained and well-equipped Americans. During the battle of Manila on Feb. 5, 1899, General del Pilar's troops in Pandacan were dislodged and pushed back to the Pasig River where they were shot down "like fish in a barrel" by young American marksmen who learned their skills in the backwoods and prairies of America.

Pio Del Pilar was born "Pio Castañeda" on July 11, 1865 in Culi-culi, San Pedro de Macati (now Makati City). In May, 1896, he joined the Katipunan and formed a Katipunanchapter called Matagumpay (Triumphant) and he took the symbolic name Pang-una(Leader). He changed his last name to "Del Pilar" to safeguard his family and prevent them from harassment by Spanish authorities.

He, General Mariano Noriel and several others persuaded Emilio Aguinaldo to withdraw his order commuting the death sentence on Andres Bonfacio and his brother Procopio to banishment under heavy guard to Mt. Pico de Loro, Maragondon, Cavite.

In his memoirs, Aguinaldo wrote: ""Upon learning of my wish, Generals Pio del Pilar and Mariano Noriel rushed back to me. "Our dear general,' General Pio del Pilar began, 'the crimes committed by the two brothers, Andres and Procopio, are of common knowledge. If you want to live a little longer and continue the task that you have so nobly begun, and if you wnat peace and order in our Revolutionary Government, do not show them any mercy."

The Bonifacio brothers were executed on May 10, 1897.

In January 1899, Del Pilar was appointed chief of the "Second Zone of Manila" by Gen. Antonio Luna. The second zone comprised Pasig and other areas south and southeast of Manila, including the Morong District.

On June 9, 1900 he was captured in San Miguel de Mayumo, Bulacan Province but was set free on June 21. On that day, Maj. Gen. Arthur C. MacArthur, Jr., now military governor, issued an amnesty, as a result of which some prominent Filipino prisoners, Del Pilar among them, took an oath of allegianceto the United States.

However, he continued to work for the guerilla underground and was rearrested. On Jan. 16, 1901 he was deported to Guam along with Apolinario Mabini, Gen. Maximo Hizon, Gen. Artemio Ricarte and Pablo Ocampo. They left on the US transport Rosecrans.

He return to the Philippines in February 1903 after agreeing to re-take the oath of allegiance to the United States.

He died on June 21, 1931. He is the acknowledged official hero of Makati City. Today, the monument in his honor stands at the intersection of Paseo de Roxas and Makati Avenue.

Massacre at Taytay, March 19, 1899

Taytay Church in ruins. It survived the American rampage on March 19, 1899, but succombed to more fighting a few months later. On June 3, 1899, US gunboats shelled  Filipino positions in the town. The US Army claimed that the Filipinos, upon leaving the following day, had fired the church.

On March 20, 1899, A.A. Barnes of Battery G, 3rd Artillery,  wrote to his brother in Indiana that they had burned the town of Taytay the night before in retaliation for the murder of  an American soldier: "Last night one of our boys was found shot and his stomach cut open. Immediately orders were received from General [Loyd] Wheaton to burn the town and kill every native in sight, which was done...About one thousand men, women and children were reported killed. I am probably growing hard-hearted for I am in my glory when I can sight my gun on some dark skin and pull the trigger."

Americans Advance To Malolos, March 24-31, 1899

The city of Manila is located in the lower right corner of this 1899 US Army map.

Brig. Gen. Arthur C. MacArthur Jr.'s column advanced along the Manila-Dagupan railway to the north. Malolos, the Filipino capitol, and the capture of Aguinaldo were the prime  objectives. But it had to overcome defenses put up by the Filipinos along the way.

The Manila to Dagupan Railway Terminus on Azcarraga St. (now Claro M. Recto Ave.), Manila (also known as the Tutuban Railway Station). Photo was taken in late 1898 or  early 1899. The building still stands, although it has been converted into a shopping mall.

Original caption: "Members of the Seventeenth Infantry head for action in the Philippine Islands."

Filipino soldiers packed on wagon trains as they head for the war front. [Photo taken in 1899, somewhere in Central Luzon]

March 1899:  US-based Munsey's Magazine features General Emilio Aguinaldo, describing him as "The Filipino Dictator" and "Self-appointed President of the Philippine Republic".

General MacArthur's formidable pursuit force consisted of about 12,000 men drawn from the following units:

VOLUNTEER INFANTRY REGIMENTS (8):  1st Montana, 1st Nebraska, 1st South Dakota, 1st Washington, 1st Wyoming, 2nd Oregon, 10th Pensylvania, 13th Minnesota and 20th Kansas.

REGULAR INFANTRY REGIMENTS (3):       17th, 20th and 22nd. 

ARTILLERY (3):                                       3rd (as infantry), 6th and Utah Light.

CAVALRY (1):                                         4th

The Americans estimated Filipino strength at about 30,000 men.

Battle of Malabon, March 25-26, 1899

Malabon:  American skirmish line, March 25, 1899.

The Battle of  Malabon took place on March 25-26, 1899, with smaller engagements in Caloocan (March 25), San Francisco del Monte (March 25), Polo (March 25), Malinta (March 26) and Meycauayan (March 26).

Ten US regiments were engaged. At Malabon, the Americans suffered 16 killed and 130 wounded; the Filipinos lost 125 men killed and 500 wounded.

Utah Light Battery firing on Malabon

On March 25, the Americans advanced towards Malabon (near Caloocan). Describing their adventures in Malabon, Anthony Michea of the Third Artillery wrote: "We bombarded a place called Malabon, and then we went in and killed every native we met, men, women, and children. It was a dreadful sight, the killing of the poor creatures. The natives captured some of the Americans and literally hacked them to pieces, so we got orders to spare no one."

Original caption: "Hotchkiss Quick Firing Gun shelling Filipinos as they were leaving Malabon, March 26, 1899"

Filipinos KIA at Malabon

Filipinos KIA at Malabon

Dead Filipino at Malabon

Original caption: "Sadness in victory - our 'Boys' caring for dying Insurgents - Battlefield of Malabon, P.I."

More Filipino wounded at Malabon

American photographer's caption:  "On the road to Malabon. Huts that had to be burned to keep natives from re-entering the same and doing a bushwhacking."  US army commissary wagons are seen on the right half of the photo.

March 25-26, 1899: Bridge at Malabon showing span blown out by Filipinos

Peter MacQueen, correspondent of The National Magazine, covered the Malabon battle. PHOTO was taken at Malabon, March 26, 1899.

SAME SCENE AS PRECEDING PHOTO. Peter MacQueen and an American soldier enjoy a meal on a bamboo table. This Filipino family was displaced by the fighting.  Note the white flag of truce they had put up.

Malabon:  Filipino prisoners; these men appear to be innocent non-combatants.

Malabon:  Filipino prisoners captured by the 2nd Oregon Volunteers

The Atlanta Constitution of Georgia, USA, issue of March 27, 1899, reports on American victories at Malabon, Polo and Malinta

Filipinos destroying the railway between Polo and Meycauayan towns, Bulacan Province

A white US soldier wrote home:  "The weather is intensely hot, and we are all tired, dirty and hungry, so we have to kill niggers whenever we have a chance, to get even for all our trouble."

March 1899: Troops of the 3rd US Infantry Regiment resting near Malinta, Bulacan Province

March 26, 1899:  US troops at Malinta, Bulacan Province

March 26, 1899:  Dead Filipino at Malinta, Bulacan Province.

March 26, 1899: Wounded Filipino POWs at Malinta, Bulacan Province

1899: Dead Filipinos lie where they fell, somewhere in Central Luzon

Filipino prisoners being brought into the American encampment, March 1899.

Original caption:   "Filipino prisoners and their captor."  Photo taken in 1899, location not specified.

1899: U.S. soldiers and Filipino POWs gather near the Manila Cathedral, Intramuros district, Manila

Filipino troops retreating from Americans; photo taken in 1899, location unspecified

Filipino civilians with flag of truce; photo taken in 1899, location unspecified

Original caption:  "How the Twentieth Kansas boys were met by conquered natives, Philippine Islands."  Photo was taken in 1899.

Two mortally terrified Filipino women are being brought in for interrogation. Photo was taken in 1899, location unspecified. The Manila correspondent of the Philadelphia Ledger reported, “Our men have been relentless, have killed to exterminate men, women, children, prisoners and captives, active insurgents and suspected people from lads up to 10, the idea prevailing that the Filipino was not much better than a dog . . .” (In Cabugao, Ilocos Sur, on June 21, 1900, five US soldiers ---John Wagner, Edward Walpole, Harry Dennis and John Allance and a Private Meeks---who were sickened by the atrocities perpetrated by their fellow Americans, deserted to the Filipino side; on Nov. 25, 1900, in the same town, another American, Private William Hyer, joined the Filipinos).

Battle of Marilao River, March 27, 1899

Colorized photo of Filipino POWs at Marilao

General Pantaleon Garcia (RIGHT) came down from Dagupan, Pangasinan Province, by train with about 1,000 riflemen and 4,000 bolo men, and took positions at Marilao.

On March 27, 1899, seven US regiments assaulted Garcia's entrenchments. The 1st South Dakota Volunteers and the 3rd US Artillery, acting as infantry, were thrown forward.

The South Dakotas charged across an open space on the east of the railway to the edge of some woods. They lost 10 killed and 11 wounded, including 3 lieutenants.

The 3rd US Artillery charged on the edge of the railroad and lost 2 killed and 7 wounded.

On the left the Filipinos in a trench east of the Marilao river offered a stubborn resistance. But they were soon forced to retreat.

Overall, American losses were 14 killed and 65 wounded. Filipino losses were 90 killed and 30 taken prisoner.

The Bulletin of San Francisco, California, in its March 27, 1899 issue, reports imminent capture of Emilio Aguinaldo. The Filipino leader was actually captured nearly two years later, on March 23, 1901

The Atlanta Constitution,  in its March 28, 1899 issue, reports stiff resistance put up by the Filipinos

Battle for Malolos, March 29-31, 1899

Bocaue burns

On March 29, Brig. Gen. Arthur C. MacArthur, Jr. advanced to Bocaue, and at 11:45 am he advanced toward Bigaa (now Balagtas), and at 3:15 pm he turned toward Guiguinto, 3 1/2 miles (6 km) from Malolos.  There was some fierce fighting in the afternoon.  Troops crossed the river at Guiguinto by working artillery over the railroad bridge by hand and swimming mules against fierce resistance.

Original caption: "For the Stars and Stripes! Death in the ranks of the Kansans" [Photo was taken in 1899, somewhere in Central Luzon]

Original caption: "A 'hot time' on the firing line -- the famous 20th Kansas in action". [Photo was taken in 1899, somewhere in Central Luzon]

Filipinos in their trenches

Americans carrying a dead comrade from the battlefield, somewhere in Central Luzon Island, 1899.

Original caption: "Work of the Kansas boys."  A Kansas soldier wrote, "The country won’t be pacified until the niggers are killed off like the Indians." [Photo was taken in 1899, somewhere in Central Luzon Island]

Ellis G. Davis, Company A, 20th Kansas Volunteers:

"They will never surrender until their whole race is exterminated. They are fighting for a good cause, and the Americans should be the last of all nations to transgress upon such rights. Their independence is dearer to them than life, as ours was in years gone by, and is today. They should have their independence, and would have had it if those who make the laws in America had not been so slow in deciding the Philippine question. Of course, we have to fight now to protect the honor of our country but there is not a man who enlisted to fight these people, and should the United States annex these islands, none but the most bloodthirsty will claim himself a hero. This is not a lack of patriotism, but my honest belief."

Original caption: "Burial of the enemy."  [Photo was taken in 1899, somewhere in Central Luzon]

Cpl. Robert D. Maxwell, Company A, 20th Kansas Volunteers:

"Sometimes we stopped to make sure a native was dead and not lying down to escape injury. Some of them would fall as though dead and, after we had passed, would climb a tree and shoot every soldier that passed that way. Even the wounded would rise up and shoot after we passed. This led to an order to take no prisoners, but to shoot all."

American soldiers fording a river.  Photo was taken in 1899, somewhere in Central Luzon.

Troop B, 4th U.S. Cavalry Regiment, crossing over pontoon bridge somewhere in Central Luzon. The troop commander was 1Lt. Samuel Rutherford. Photo was taken in 1899.

American troops are conveyed upstream into the interior of Luzon by an armored steam launch, navy boats, and "cascos" (Filipino house boats), 1899.

US troops taking guns across the Bigaa River on the bridge constructed by their engineering battalion

March 29, 1899: 20th Kansas Volunteer Infantry Regiment in action against Filipinos at Bigaa

March 29, 1899: Wounded Filipino POWs at Bigaa, Bulacan Province

March 29, 1899:  American soldiers bringing Filipino POWs across the Bigaa River.

March 29, 1899: Filipino prisoners at Bigaa, Bulacan Province

Issue dated March 29, 1899

American author J.D. Givens's caption: "Carrying tenderly those who have tried to slay us".  American soldiers load a wounded Filipino POW onto a train. [Photo was taken in 1899, somewhere in Central Luzon]

American photographer's caption:  "Died in action. These words are simple, but they speak volumes. They tell the sublimest act of one's life; of his death for his country. The view of the battle field strewn with dead. The central figure is that of a hero as he died defending his country's honor". [Photo was taken in 1899, somewhere in Central Luzon]

20th Kansas Volunteers attend to a wounded comrade. [Photo was taken in 1899, somewhere in Central Luzon]

US troops returning with their dead and wounded. [Photo was taken in 1899, somewhere in Central Luzon]

Americans conveying their dead from the battlefield. [Photo was taken in 1899, somewhere in Central Luzon]

Original caption:  "This is an army supply train en route to Malolos. The wagons are hauled by a species of buffalo peculiar to the Philippines. It is a patient animal somewhat livelier than the American ox. It does the hard labor of the islands."  Photo was taken in late March 1899.

Malolos: A portion of the US firing line; Filipinos are among the trees in front

March 30, 1899: The American photographer's caption: "A battle is in progress at this point, but a white flag is seen approaching from the position of the native army, and the order to cease firing is given, while the men anxiously await the result." Photo depicts men of the 20th Kansas Volunteer Infantry Regiment near Malolos

On March 30, the Americans reached the outskirts of Malolos. At the sight of a white signal of surrender, the Americans broke into cheers but the bearers suddenly broke and ran back into the town.  An instant pursuit was begun and the US troops were received with heavy volleys.  The Americans camped all night outside Malolos.  The battle opened at daybreak.

Americans advancing on Malolos

March 31, 1899: 20th Kansas Volunteers cautiously entering Malolos.  Colonel (later General) Frederick Funston, Kansas Volunteers:   "The boys go for the enemy as if they were chasing jackrabbits........I, for one, hope that Uncle Sam will apply the chastening rod, good, hard, and plenty, and lay it on until they come into the reservation and promise to be good 'Injuns'."

At the end of the main street of the town, they were met by a barricade of stones from which a hot fire was poured by a few Filipino soldiers.  Col. Frederick Funston leaped from his horse and swinging his hat, led the 20th Kansas Volunteers over the barricade and down the streets with terrific yells, firing as they ran.  

The Associated Press cabled: "Colonel Funston, always at the front, was the first man in Malolos, followed by a group of dashing Kansans." But the town was deserted. 

President Emilio Aguinaldo had moved his government 30 miles (50 km) farther to San Isidro, Nueva Ecija Province.

American losses were 8 killed and 105 wounded. Filipino casualties were unknown.

Filipino soldiers at Malolos

Original caption:  "The desperate character of the insurgents is shown in this wanton destruction of Malolos church. It was fired by them as they fled before the Americans just entering the town. It was done partly in revenge against the religious orders."  Malolos Cathedral, also known as the Basilica Menor dela Nuestra Señora de Immaculada Concepcion, was used by Aguinaldo as the Presidential Palace and seat of power of the First Philippine Republic. His soldiers left delayed-fused explosives which detonated and set the building on fire.

Original caption: "The Insurgent House of Congress on Fire, Malolos, P.I."

Malolos: The church and smoking ruins of Aguinaldo's headquarters

President Emilio Aguinaldo's ruined headquarters

Original caption:  "Distribution of troops in various portions of the town for preservation of lives and property of loyal natives, and to fortify against attacks of insurgents, as well as to insure the general safety."   Malolos, March 31, 1899.

Original caption: "Public square in Malolos after troops entered city, March 31, 1899"

US soldiers at Malolos public square

US soldiers inspect Malolos jail where 5 Americans and several Spanish friars were kept as prisoners by the Filipinos

U.S. troops resting near the public square at Malolos.  Photo was taken on March 31, 1899.  Source: Jonathan Best Collection.

US troops at Malolos, March 31, 1899.

An American soldier inspects a captured Filipino improvised iron pipe cannon.

Battery B of the Utah Volunteer Light Artillery at Malolos

22nd U.S. Infantry on review at Malolos, March 31, 1899

Original caption: "Chinese flags are everywhere flying for the protection of lives and property of Chinese residents and merchants. These flags were always respected as covering neutrals and non-combatants." PHOTO was taken at Malolos, March 31, 1899.

Malolos:  Chinese men smoking cigarettes.  Photo taken shortly after the Americans had captured the town..

The American photographer's caption: "Wretched inhabitants and principal Street of Aguinaldo's abandoned Capital, Manolos, Philippines. Photographer: Underwood & Underwood Publisher: New York. Date of Publication: c1899."

Original caption:  " The last word that he uttered was 'Mother,' an affecting scene after the Battle of Malolos, P.I."

General Loyd Wheaton on horseback at Malolos.

Original caption:  "The proclamation of General Luna is posted upon the wall near the door. The officers are Generals Otis, McArthur and Hale. Photograph was taken within half hour following evacuation of insurgents."   PHOTO was taken at Barrio Barasoain, Malolos, March 31, 1899.

Original caption:  "Congressional hall and executive building occupied by Aguinaldo and his aids. Here Aguinaldo took the oath of office. After the Filipinos were driven away, Gen. McArthur made it his headquarters. Photograph taken on first day of occupation."  Malolos, March 31, 1899.

Original caption:   "Burying Filipinos after the battle of Malolos, P.I."

April 4, 1899: Official Proclamation of American intentions by the U.S. First Philippine Commission

The First Philippine Commission, Left to Right: Jacob Gould Schurman, Admiral George Dewey, Charles Denby and Dean C. Worcester. The fifth member was Maj. Gen. Elwell Otis (absent from the photo). Both Dewey and Otis regarded the body as useless and seldom attended meetings.

On Jan. 20, 1899, Pres. William McKinley appointed the First Philippine Commission (the Schurman Commission) to investigate conditions in the Philippines  and make recommendations. The Commission was presided over by Jacob Gould Schurman, president of Cornell University and a professor of Christian ethics and moral philosophy.

Members of the First Philippine Commission in complete attendance. LEFT to RIGHT:  Dean C. Worcester, Charles Denby, Jacob Gould Schurman, John MacArthur (secretary), Admiral George Dewey, and Maj. Gen. Elwell Otis.

The members of the Commission were Dean C. Worcester (Professor at University of Michigan), Charles Denby (Ambassador to China), Admiral George Dewey (Head of the American Asiatic Squadron), and Maj. Gen. Elwell Otis (Military Governor of the Philippines). 

It arrived in Manila on March 4, 1899, a month after the outbreak of the Filipino-American War.  

The Schurman Commission interviewed Filipino landlords, money-lenders, and businessmen in Manila without trying to learn the views of the Filipinos who were resisting the Americans. 

The Commission deemed that the Americans' victory at Malolos on March 31, 1899 was more or less decisive; the time was opportune to issue a proclamation to the Filipino people. It would explain the true objectives of the United States in acquiring the Philippines.

On April 4, 1899, the proclamation was posted in the streets of Manila, printed in English, Spanish and Tagalog. It was also distributed in the outlying towns as far as Malolos.

The proclamation read in part:

"The commission desires to assure the people of the Philippine islands of the cordial good will and fraternal feeling which is entertained for them by the President of the United States and by the American people. The aim and object of the American government...is the well-being, prosperity, and happiness of the Philippine people and their elevation and advancement to a position among the most civilized peoples of the world...this felicity and perfection...is to be brought about by the assurance of peace and order...guarantee of civil and religious liberty...establishment of justice...cultivation of letters, science and the liberal and practical arts...development...with the aid of modern mechanical inventions, of the great natural resources of the archipelago...Unfortunately these pure aims and purposes of the American government and people have been misinterpreted to some of the inhabitants...as a consequence the friendly American forces have without provocation or cause been openly attacked...the supremacy of the United States must and will be enforced...those who resist it can accomplish no end other than their own ruin."

On April 29, 1899 Apolinario Mabini, the head of President Emilio Aguinaldo's cabinet, sent a message to the Commission asking for a three-month cease-fire in order to learn Filipino public opinion, but the Americans rejected his offer.

April 9-12, 1899: Lawton's Lake Laguna de Bay Expedition

Maj. Gen. Henry W. Lawton in field uniform in the Philippines, 1899. The white helmet was worn by General Lawton in all of his Cuban and Philippine engagements.

After the capture of Malolos, the U.S. 2nd Division under Maj. Gen. Henry W. Lawton  was sent by Maj. Gen. Elwell S. Otis to the south into Laguna province, via Lake Laguna de Bay, to take the Filipino stronghold located in Santa Cruz, 48 miles (80 km) from Manila. The Filipinos were commanded by Gen. Juan Cailles.

US troops boarding cascos on the Pasig River at San Pedro de Macati

On April 8, 1899, at 5:15 p.m., Lawton's division, numbering 1,509 men, boarded 8 launches, 17 cascos and 2 bancas on the Pasig River at San Pedro de Macati, east of Manila, and sailed towards Lake Laguna de Bay. ["Bay" is pronounced "BAH-EE"].

Cascos, with soldiers for General Henry W. Lawton's Laguna Campaign, being towed by the gunboat Laguna de Bay across Lake Laguna de Bay to Santa Cruz

On April 9 at 10:30 a.m., landing craft began offloading Lawton's troops south of Santa Cruz. Darkness fell before all the troops could be landed, and a minor skirmish broke out to the Americans' right.

Early on April 10, General Lawton went ashore and cut the telegraph line into Santa Cruz, thus severing the Filipinos' connection with Aguinaldo in the north. At the approach to a bridge just outside of the town, which was heavily guarded by the Filipinos, Lawton ordered a charge and a battalion of the 14th US Regular Infantry Regiment supported by 1st Idaho and 1st Washington volunteers routed the local force.

In the meantime, dismounted Troops C and L of the  4th U.S. Cavalry Regiment, which had not gone ashore the night before were landing under fire just north of the town. (Lawton served in the 4th Cavalry as a 1st Lieutenant and Captain from 1871 to 1888 and had commanded Troop B during the capture of the Indian chief Geronimo).

4th Cavalry men resting in a banana grove.   Photo taken in 1899, location not specified.

The 4th Cavalry drove off the Filipinos on the beach with supporting fire from the gunboats  Laguna de Bay, Oeste and Napindan. That same day Lawton took control of Santa Cruz.

US soldiers look over dead and wounded Filipinos after Battle of Santa Cruz

The Americans suffered 1 dead and 6 men wounded at Santa Cruz, the Filipinos 96 killed with 41 taken prisoner. 

An American soldier poses for a photo atop a carabao (water buffalo), the Filipino farmer's beast of burden, circa 1899-1900, location not specified.

A private in the 14th US Regular Infantry was gored by a carabao (water buffalo) but he survived; he held the bull by the hindfoot and held him until the rest of his squad got together and shot the animal.

Pagsanjan Gate. Photo taken in 1904.

General Cailles (RIGHT) and his men withdrew to Pagsanjan. On April 11, at 6:00 a.m., General Lawton began  the expedition to capture  Pagsanjan. A battalion of sharpshooters was sent ahead of the command as an advance guard, and as they came within 1.5 miles (2.5 km) of the town, they were fired upon by a small force of Filipinos from hastily built breatsworks blocking the road.

An artillery piece was brought up and fired two rounds into the breastworks, which were soon abandoned by most of the Filipinos. Some Filipinos remained in the breatsworks after the bombardment and were driven out as well after the sharpshooters gave the breastworks another heavy volley.

Pagsanjan was captured with no further resistance. The Americans suffered 5 wounded against 6-8 Filipinos killed.

Monument to Emilio Aguinaldo at Pagsanjan

In the town plaza of Pagsanjan was an old Spanish monument from which the people had taken the original inscriptions and put in their own inscriptions; one of these was to "E. Aguinaldo, el Libertador."

An American writer commented: "In this town there was an air of so much refinement and wealth that it seemed strange, that such intelligent folk should run off before a civilized army, as if it were the hosts of Timur." The US soldiers butchered chicken and geese abandoned by the fleeing townsfolk.

General Lawton's Laguna expedition resting by the way.  Photo taken in April 1899

General Lawton's Laguna expedition resting by the way.  Photo taken in April 1899

The next day, April 12, 1899, the Americans launched another expedition to capture the town of Paete.

About 220 men began the march at 2:45 that afternoon. After about an hour, the Americans spotted Filipino breast works 150 yards in front of them, manned by 50 or so Filipino fighters. Major John Fraine, commander of the Ist North Dakota Volunteers, sent a small squad consisting of one corporal and four privates to flank the Filipino positions.

Some Filipinos hiding in thick foliage flanking the road fired at close range on the small force, killing four.

The sole survivor, Private Thomas Sletteland (LEFT),  managed to drive back the nearest group of Filipinos, who repeatedly tried to seize the rifles of his fallen comrades.

He was later awarded the Medal of Honor.

Flanking and frontal infantry assaults, artillery fire and scathing gatling gun fire from the gunboat Laguna de Baysucceeded in dislodging the Filipinos from their entrenchments.

1st North Dakota Volunteers in camp at Paete, Laguna Province. Photo was taken on April 13, 1899.

Lawton's command suffered 5 killed in capturing Paete; 15 Filipinos were kiled and wounded. The Laguna Campaign was over and deemed a success. During the entire campaign, the Americans suffered 7 killed and 21 wounded. They reported a total of 125 Filipinos killed and 40 captured. Sixty Chinese, who asked to be taken from Santa Cruz, were brought to Manila.

1st North Dakota Volunteers quartered in the old church at Paete, Laguna Province. Photo was taken on April 13, 1899.

The San Francisco Call, April 14, 1899, Page 1

Lawton did not have enough men to occupy Santa Cruz permanently. General Otis called Lawton’s expedition back, fearing they might be cut off. Otis also wanted Lawton’s force back for a pending operation to the north by Maj. Gen. Arthur C. MacArthur, Jr.

Paete:  US soldiers and young Filipino fruit vendors. Photo was taken on March 24, 1901.

April 16, 1899: Emilio Jacinto dies in Majayjay, Laguna Province

Known as the "Brains of the Katipunan", Emilio Jacinto was born in Trozo, Tondo, Manila, on Dec 15,1875. He was the son of Mariano Jacinto and Josefa Dizon. He was fluent in both Spanish and Tagalog, but he spoke more in Spanish. He studied in the Universidad de Santo Tomas, but did not finish college and at 20 joined the Katipunan. Because he was very brilliant, he became the advisor on fiscal matters and secretary to Andres Bonifacio. He also edited and wrote for the Katipunan newspaper "Kalayaan"--Freedom in Tagalog. He wrote in the newspaper under the pen name Dimasilaw, and in theKatipunan he was called Pingkian. Emilio Jacinto was the author of the Kartilya ng Katipunan. After Andres Bonifacio's death, he continued fighting the Spaniards.

Majayjay Church and the town center in 1899

He contracted malaria and died at age 23 on April 16, 1899 in Majayjay, Laguna province. Later on, his bones were transferred to the Manila North Cemetery.

Americans Advance To San Fernando, April 22-May 5, 1899

Soon after he captured Malolos on March 31, 1899 (ABOVE), Brig. Gen. Arthur C. MacArthur, Jr., was eager to proceed northward at once along the line of the railroad to Tarlac Province in pursuit of Aguinaldo, who, he felt sure, was making his retreat in that direction. In reply to his request to be allowed to do so, Maj. Gen. Elwell S. Otis said:

"Aguinaldo will never retreat in province of Tarlac. If forced strenuously he will retire along the edge of the province of Bulacan into Nueva Ecija, where Tagalos inhabit. This for political reasons... Was informed several days ago that insurgents would retire on Baliuag, which is the intersection of several important roads connecting with nearly all the Tagalog country north of Manila."

Indeed, President Emilio Aguinaldo moved his capital to San Isidro, Nueva Ecija Province, 65 miles (104 km) north of Manila.

Virginian-Pilot, Norfolk, Virginia, issue of May 6, 1899, Page 1

Believing that a combined movement which should result in the hemming in of the Filipinos would be more advisable than a pursuit, General Otis detained General MacArthur at Malolos, until communications between that town and Manila should be perfected, and until Maj. Gen. Henry W. Lawton could be sent north to protect his eastern flank and aid in surrounding the Filipino forces.

Malolos church used as headquarters by the US army, 1899

On April 22, after three weeks of cooling off at Malolos, MacArthur was allowed to advance to the north; the objective was San Fernando, Pampanga Province. Wheaton came up on the left, and Hale's brigade moved along the center. On the same day, Lawton's division started to sweep the country to the right,  with San Isidro, Nueva Ecija Province, as objective. The plan called for MacArthur and Lawton to meet up at San Miguel de Mayumo, Bulacan Province; the combined columns would then proceed to crush the Filipinos at San Isidro. All the forces were retarded by the extreme heat, rains, and bad roads.

Battle of Quingua, April 23, 1899

The first important fighting of MacArthur's northward movement was at Quingua (now Plaridel), Bulacan Province, on April 23. It was a two-part battle.

The first phase was a brief victory for the young Filipino general Gregorio del Pilar over the American Cavalry led by Major (later Maj. Gen.) James Franklin Bell, West Point class 1878, where Bell's advance was stopped.

But in the second phase, Bell was reinforced by the 1st Nebraskan Infantry and the Nebraskans routed the Filipinos, but not before they repelled a cavalry charge that killed Colonel John M. Stotsenburg.

Scouts commanded by Major James Franklin Bell. Photo was taken in 1899, somewhere in Central Luzon.

The battle began when Bell (LEFT, 1899 photo) and his men, while on a scouting mission, were attacked by a strong force of about 700-1,000 Filipinos led by General Gregorio del Pilar.

The Americans were forced to withdraw to a defensive position. Swarms of Filipino troops began to attack from different directions.

Bell saw that he was in a badly exposed position, and if he did not receive help soon his force risked being captured or killed.

1st Nebraska Volunteers crossing a river during their advance against the Filipinos at Quingua

Bell sent for reinforcements, and the 1st Nebraskans came to his aid under Colonel Stotsenburg.

Col. John M. Stotsenburg (2nd from left) and some staff officers of the 1st Nebraska Volunteer Infantry Regiment. Photo was taken at his field headquarters in March 1899.

Col. John M. Stotsenburg in the field. Photo was taken shortly before he was killed.

Once he entered the field, Stotsenburg ordered a charge, and the Nebraskan Infantry—Stotsenburg at their lead with a dozen or so cavalrymen—rushed the Filipinos' position. Stotsenberg, taking into account that the Filipinos previously had displayed poor marksmanship, perceived that a charge from such a force would dislodge and route them, which on most occasions, had been done before rather easily.

Instead, the Filipinos held their ground and opened a heavy accurate fire into the charging cavalrymen. Stotsenberg fell, along with 6 of his men.

Several of the cavalrymen's mounts were also slain. The Filipinos sustained the heavy fire, forcing the cavalry to retreat.

The Nebraskan infantry advanced under withering fire. Soon the two forces clashed in close range combat. After a stiff fight in which both sides suffered heavy casualties, the Filipinos were driven into their secondary defenses.

Brig. Gen. Irving Hale (LEFT) ordered an artillery bombardment on the Filipinos' secondary defensive lines. Two artillery pieces were brought up, which fired 20 shots into the Filipino positions. The powerful artillery barrage forced the Filipinos to retreat.

Casualties: 15 Americans killed, 43 wounded; 100 Filipinos killed and wounded.

In 1902, a large US military reservation, Fort Stotsenburg, was created in Pampanga Province and named in honor of Colonel Stotsenburg. It was originally set up as a facility for various US Army Cavalry units. In 1919, a US Army air force base, Clark Field, was carved out of Fort Stotsenberg. [The US Air Force became a separate branch of service only in 1947.]

In 1949, the two military facilities were combined and renamed Clark Air Base. It was the largest overseas U.S. military base in the world, with 156,204 acres (63,214 hectares). It played a major role during the Cold War, but was closed following extensive damage from the Mt. Pinatubo eruption on June 15, 1991. On November 27, 1991, the United States turned over Clark Air Base to the Philippine government.

Men of Company D, 3rd US Infantry Regiment, at captured Filipino breastworks that commanded the main entrance to Quingua (now Plaridel), Bulacan Province

Guardhouse of the 3rd U.S. Infantry Regiment at Quingua (now Plaridel), Bulacan Province

Battle of Calumpit, April 25-27, 1899

Issue of April 25, 1899

Brig. Gen. Arthur C. MacArthur, Jr. pushed 5 miles (8 km) farther north of Malolos to Calumpit, where he faced the forces of Gen. Antonio Luna--commander-in-chief of all Filipino forces--and Gen. Gregorio del Pilar.

April 24, 1899: Thirty-eight Filipinos were found dead in this trench near Pulilan, Bulacan Province

Filipino soldiers behind their trenches; photo taken in 1899, probably in Calumpit

Luna ignored Aguinaldo's orders to retreat and burn the railway bridge spanning the Bagbag River at Calumpit. Worst, when the Americans were about to attack, Luna, together with his foot soldiers, cavalry, and artillery left Calumpit to punish General Tomas Mascardo for his insubordination. Mascardo was then in Guagua, Pampanga Province and dillydallied in obeying Luna's order to send reinforcements. Mediators managed to avert a violent confrontation between the two generals.

Bagbag River railway bridge thrown down by Gen. Gregorio del Pilar. The US Army engineers corps built steps for the troops to cross and assault the Filipinos beyond.

During April 23-24, General del Pilar was left to fight the Americans; he threw down a section of the railway bridge.  He actually planned to wreck the American artillery transport train; his men cut the girders of the iron bridge, intending to have the structure fall with the train, but it collapsed prematurely of its own weight. The US troops advanced to the edge of the river, a hundred yards beyond which the Filipinos were entrrenched.  

The 20th Kansas Volunteers were on the right side of the road and the Utah Volunteer Light Artillery and the 1st Montana Volunteers on the left.  In the center was an armored train mounted with six pounders and rapid fire guns. 

Chinese porters employed by the US Army in its Central Luzon campaign

The train was pushed by Chinese porters to the mouth of the bridge and a vigorous response was made to the fire of the Filipinos.  Col. Frederick Funston, along with 6 men, crawled across the ironwork of the bridge under heavy fire.  When they reached the broken span, they dropped into the water and swam ashore. 

Fallen Filipinos in a trench on the north bank of the Bagbag River

Upon reaching the bank, they charged the trenches with wild western yells and killed 25 Filipinos. 

On April 25, at nightfall, Luna and his soldiers came back. But it was too late; the Americans had already broken through the Filipinos' defenses.

The Americans  promptly repaired the Bagbag  railway bridge they coveted for their supply trains.

Americans bring in artillery across the Bagbag River after the battle for the railroad bridge

51st Iowa Volunteers fording the Bagbag River after the battle.

Col. Frederick Funston and some of his men rafting across the Rio Grande de Pampangaafter the battle of Calumpit

On April 27, 1899, Col. Frederick Funston directed his men across the other river in Calumpit, the 400-foot wide (122 m) Rio Grande de Pampanga,  by establishing a rope ferry and towing rafts on the tied ropes. The bridge had been stripped by the Filipinos and the river was too deep to ford.   With 120 Kansas men, Funston went to a point several hundred yards from the bridge where 2 privates swam with a rope to the opposite shore where they attached the ropes to a portion of the Filipino trench, under vigorous covering fire. The rope was then attached to 3 rafts loaded with 50 men and drawn to shore under heavy fire.  Funston was on the first raft to cross the river to confront the Filipinos on the other side. 

The Americans attacked the left flank of the Filipinos who scuttled into covered ways and trenches. The rest of the Kansans and Montanans  crossed the bridge in single file along the stringers. All the woodwork and much of the iron work had been removed. The 1st Nebraska Volunteers, acting as reserves,.attacked the Filipinos in three lines of entrenchments, driving them out.

The New York Times reported:

"In the meantime, a large body of Filipinos, estimated at no fewer than 3,000, led by Gen. Antonio Luna on a black charger, appeared in the open field about two miles to the left, evidently coming to reinforce the rebels who were engaged with the Nebraskans. Emerging from the jungle, the enemy formed an open skirmish line, nearly two miles in length, with very thick reserves behind. They then advanced at double quick, until they were about 2,000 yards from the American line, when Gen. Wheaton ordered his troops to fire. The rebels, who were evidently unaware that the Americans had crossed the river, broke and ran in the direction of Macabebe. The other Filipinos fled toward Apalit station."

1899: US engineers ferry artillery across a river, possibly the Rio Grande de Pampanga

Macabebes from Pampanga Province coming into American lines at Calumpit to offer their services as soldiers.

For his actions at Calumpit, Funston was rewarded with a promotion and along with 1Lt William Trembley and Cpl Edward White,  earned the Medal of Honor.


COL, 20th Kansas Volunteer Inf
Action:     At Rio Grande de la Pampanga, Luzon, Philippine Islands
Date:       April 27, 1899
Inducted:  Iola, Kansas.
Born:       Springfield, Ohio
Issued:    February 14, 1900
Citation: "Crossed the river on a raft and by his skill and daring enabled the general commanding to carry the enemy's entrenched position on the north bank of the river and to drive him with great loss from the important strategic position of Calumpit."
The Battle of Calumpit included 5 related actions: Quingua, Norzagaray, Pulilan, Angat and Apalit. The US Army reported 22 Americans killed and 127 wounded, and 200 Filipinos killed.

The San Francisco Call, April 29, 1899

Gen. Tomas Mascardo's Insubordination at Calumpit

When the Americans were about to assault Calumpit, Antonio Luna ordered reinforcements from Gen. Tomas Mascardo in Guagua, Pampanga but the latter carried out the order tardily and grudgingly. Luna was further peeved upon learning that Mascardo had left Guagua to visit a girl friend in Arayat, despite the imminent American offensive. Mascardo later insisted that he had gone there to inspect his soldiers. Mascardo had long wanted to resign as field commander to avoid any conflict with Luna, his superior, whom he bested in a suit for the hand of a beauteous Pampanga girl. Mascardo, the more handsome and dashing of the two generals, had run off with the girl. This made Luna furious. Hence Luna was said to be overly assertive of his seniority over Mascardo. Luna ordered Mascardo's 12-hour arrest. Mascardo responded that if Gen. Luna had enough guts to enforce his decree, he in turn had enough to resist him. Incensed, Gen. Luna wired Pampanga Governor Tiburcio Hilario to prepare for his arrival. Governor Hilario met Gen. Luna first and pleaded with him to restore peace and unity at a crucial moment in the history of the nation.

A bevy of beauties led by Nicolasa Pamintuan Dayrit and Pampanga's Red Cross President, Praxedes Fajardo, brought flowers and knelt before General Luna on the steps of the Bacolor convent, to dissuade the fiery General from violently confronting Gen. Mascardo. Governor Hilario sent three emissaries to convince Gen. Mascardo to submit himself to Luna's authority. Mascardo appeared in Betis to inform Gen. Luna that he was willing to follow the latter's orders. But by then, it was too late to save Calumpit from the advancing Americans.

Nicolasa Dayrit was born in San Fernando, Pampanga, on Sept. 10, 1874 . She was one of the well-educated women of her time, fluent in Spanish and an accomplished pianist. She helped minister to sick and wounded Filipino soldiers.  She married Dr. Vicente Panlilio, a graduate of a medical school in Spain. During the Japanese occupation, the Panlilios moved to Manila but during the battle to liberate the capital, Dr. Panlilio was lost, never to be seen again. Doña Nicolasa became despondent and died of heart attack, on April 12, 1945 at the age of 71.

Americans Take Santo Tomas, May 4, 1899

The church and convent at Santo Tomas, Pampanga Province.  The church was built in 1767. Photo was taken in the 1990's.

May 4, 1899: 1st Nebraska Volunteers advancing on Santo Tomas, Pampanga Province

Brig. Gen. Loyd Wheaton's 1st Brigade (1st Montana and 20th Kansas Volunteer Infantry Regiments) and Brig. Gen. Irving Hale's 2nd Brigade (1st Nebraska, 1st South Dakota and 51st Iowa Volunteer Infantry Regiments)  drove the Filipinos led by Gen. Antonio Luna (LEFT) out of Santo Tomas, Pampanga Province, on the night of May 4, 1899.

The Americans suffered two dead. Filipino casualties were not reported.

General Luna was wounded in the battle. On May 12, 1899, he turned over his Angeles-Magalang Line Command to General Venancio Concepcion while he recuperated in Bayambang, Pangasinan Province. 

Company E, 9th US Infantry Regiment, guarding the railway bridge at Santo Tomas, Pampanga Province. PHOTO was taken in 1899.

A daily newspaper in Guthrie, Oklahoma, issue of May 5, 1899

The Seattle Star, issue of May 5, 1899

Americans Capture San Fernando, May 5, 1899

Filipinos KIA at San Fernando

Ruins of the church and convent at San Fernando

Brig. Gen. Irving Hale led two battalions of the 51st Iowa Volunteer Infantry Regiment and assaulted San Fernando, Pampanga Province. The Filipinos put up little resistance but before retreating, they burned the railroad station, the church and several buildings in its vicinity. A number of warehouses containing a large quantity of sugar were found.

Several Spanish prisoners were liberated. They stated that from 1,200 to 1,500 Filipino soldiers had passed through to the north on the previous afternoon, May 4, 1899, after the fight of Santo Tomas, and that Gen. Antonio Luna was wounded on the arm or chest, and was carried on a couch.

Original caption: "Execution of Phillopino Insurrecto Captain by the 3rd Inf, Co's B and D at San Fernando, Pampanga, P.I."

Associated Press correspondent's headquarters at San Fernando. PHOTO was taken in 1899.

51st Iowa Volunteers at breakfast in San Fernando. PHOTO was taken in 1899.

20th Kansas Volunteers lining up for dinner at San Fernando. PHOTO was taken in May 1899.

US troops at San Fernando

American officers' quarters at San Fernando

US army advance post near San Fernando

US cavalry camped at San Fernando

22nd Infantry troops leaving San Fernando for the front

Americans Advance To San Isidro, April 22-May 17, 1899

Company H, 22nd US Infantry Regiment, in the trenches of the south lines of Manila, April 15, 1899. A week later, the unit was attached to Lawton's expedition to capture San Isidro.

As soon as General Lawton returned to Manila from his Laguna expedition on April 17, General Otis ordered the second concerted move northward. This time General Lawton was to proceed northward to the east of General MacArthur's column, forming a junction with MacArthur's troops at San Miguel de Mayumo in Bulacan Province, to the north of the main Filipino forces, when an attack could be made on all sides at once. From there, they would move on to San Isidro. [MAP: RED DOTS MARK LAWTON'SSTOPS, BLUE MACARTHUR'S]

On April 22, Lawton’s expedition left La Loma, near Manila, on the same day that MacArthur took up the advance northward from Malolos up the Manila-Dagupan railroad.

Lawton's first objective was to join the 2nd Oregon Volunteers in the town of Norzagaray, Bulacan Province, 25 miles (40 km) from Manila. Little  resistance was met along the way, but the difficult terrain and inaccurate  Spanish maps bogged them down. The roads marked on the maps were mere trails or did not exist. It took them four days to meet the 2nd Oregon.

General Lawton's "Bull Train" with provisions halted on the road for rest, 1899

Throughout the next several days as Lawton’s expedition moved toward San Miguel de Mayumo, they would run into the occasional skirmish, but the Filipinos would quickly retreat. Terrain turned out to be the most formidable enemy. With the lack of good roads, General Otis was concerned about command and control. Rivers, swamps, heat, and sickness bogged down MacArthur's 2nd Division to the west.

Maj. Gen. Henry W. Lawton is shown here observing the American advance on Baliuag, Bulacan Province, May 2, 1899.

On May 2, Lawton drove the Filipinos out of Baliuag, Bulacan Province. He was ordered to halt there, since Otis heard rumors of a Filipino army moving on his right flank.

Church at Baliuag used for quarters by Lawton's expedition. Photo taken in May 1899.

Although Lawton requested to move onward to San Miguel de Mayumo, noting the lack of "effective resistance", he was to remain at Baliuag until May 15.

The Church of San Agustin and plaza at Baliuag. Photo was taken in 1897.

On May 6, he gave verbal permission to the residents of Baliuag to hold a meeting in the plaza, for the purpose of electing a Capitan Municipal, or mayor, to administer the civil affairs of the town and represent its interest in connection with the American forces occupying it. The result of this election was announced in the following orders, which were published in English, Spanish, and Tagalog:

This was the first election held in the Philippines under American supervision.

Maj. Gen. Henry W. Lawton and staff resting at his headquarters in Baliuag, Bulacan Province, May 1899.

While at Baliuag, Lawton asked William H. Young, a civilian adventurer from Connecticut, and his detachment of 25 “specially qualified enlisted men”, known as Young's Scouts, to reconnoiter the country around San Miguel de Mayumo and San Ildefonso (also in Bulacan Province). These towns controlled the approaches to San Isidro. Sixteen of the scouts were from the 1st North Dakota Volunteer Infantry, 6 from the 2nd Oregon Volunteers and 3 from the 4th U.S. Cavalry.

The original Young's Scouts (26 men) at Baliuag, Bulacan Province, on May 11,1899.

On May 12, Young's Scouts reconnoitered the town of San Ildefonso. They dislodged about 30 Filipinos from their outpost on a hill. When the Filipinos discovered the small force opposing them, they attempted to retake the hill. The arrival of American reinforcements forced them to withdraw north toward San Miguel de Mayumo. Twenty-five Filipinos were killed, including a captain and a lieutenant.

On May 13, Young's Scouts moved on to San Miguel de Mayumo for reconnaissance. They approached a Filipino trench line defending a bridge over the river leading to the town. When the scouts were spotted, they decided to rush the trench. The Filipinos retreated to the town with the scouts in hot pursuit. A battle ensued for four hours until an American relief forced the Filipinos to fall back. William H. Young was wounded, but he died three days later. Filipino casualties were unknown.

US infantry and Battery D, 6th Artillery, on outpost duty near San Fernando, Pampanga Province, 1899

MacArthur’s 2nd Division (4,800 men) got as far north as San Fernando in Pampanga Province, about 45 miles (72 km) north of Manila on the main railway line. However, it was unable to meet Lawton at San Miguel de Mayumo; nearly half of the troops were sick or worn out and needed to recuperate.  MacArthur also reported that General Antonio Luna was in his immediate front with 2,500 men, and had 1,000 more about five miles (8 km) northeast of San Fernando. Between San Fernando and Baliuag where Lawton was stationed MacArthur thought there were some 10,000 Filipino soldiers. Otis could not spare any fresh troops to relieve or reinforce the 2nd Division; therefore, he directed MacArthur to hold on to San Fernando with what force he had, operating against and holding Luna as best he could.

At any rate, Otis permitted Lawton to advance on San Isidro.

Company B, 2nd Oregon Volunteer Infantry Regiment, 1899

To start off, Lawton assigned 2nd Lt. James E. Thornton of Company B, 2nd Oregon Volunteers, as new chief scout, in place of the fallen William H. Young.

Young's Scouts, now commanded by 2nd Lt. James E. Thornton (at far right)

Lawton's staff relaxing at their headquarters in Baliuag, Bulacan Province, May 1899.

On May 16, from Baliuag, Lawton ordered Thornton to try and locate Filipinos blocking the road to San Isidro. As the 23 scouts approached a wooden bridge on the Cabon River about 3 miles (5 km) south of San Isidro, they discovered a Filipino entrenchment  on the opposite side. When the Filipinos spotted the scouts, they set fire to the bridge. Trying to save the bridge, Thornton and two scouts ran across the burning bridge. The other 20 scouts waded across the river while steadily firing on the Filipinos. The Filipinos took off and the bridge was saved. A scout, Pvt. James Harrington, and 6 Filipinos were killed.

Young's Scouts at Manila. Photo was taken in late May 1899.

For their actions on May 13 and 16, Medals of Honor were awarded to 13 members of the Young's Scouts.

Colonel (later General) Owen Summers, CO of the 2nd Oregon Volunteer Infantry Regiment, at Baliuag, May 1899.

Lawton ordered Colonel Owen Summers, commander of the 2nd Oregon Volunteers, to lead a provisional brigade and capture San Isidro.

Scott's Battery on the way to San Isidro, May 1899.  

The brigade consisted of a 3-gun section (Scott's Battery) of  Utah Light Artillery Battery  B, Troop I of the 4th Cavalry, elements of the 22nd, 1st North Dakota, and 2nd Oregon infantry regiments, and Young's Scouts.

On May 17, at about 4 o'clock A. M., Colonel Summers (RIGHT) and his column left San Miguel de Mayumo,  arriving at 6 A. M. just north of the bridge to San Isidro.

The Americans advanced toward the town, and when within about 1,800 yards of it, the Filipinos, estimated to number 2,000, opened fire. The Filipinos withdrew when the Americans turned their right flank.

The advance was continued and San Isidro was occupied by the Americans. Two Americans were wounded; 15 Filipinos were killed and 3 captured.

Contemporary photo of house used as headquarters by Emilio Aguinaldo at San Isidro. The owner was Crispulo Sideco, also known as "Kapitang Pulong". It is now occupied by a Christian organization. [Photo taken on March 11, 2010 by Shubert Ciencia].

Several Spaniards who claimed to have been held prisoners by the Filipinos were found in the town, among them 3 officers, who were later returned to Manila.

President Aguinaldo (LEFT) withdrew to Cabanatuan, Nueva Ecija Province, 18 miles (30 km) to the north.

After the capture of San Isidro, President McKinley sent the following dispatch to Major-General Otis:

"Convey to General Lawton and the gallant men of his command congratulations on the successful operations during the past month, resulting in the capture this morning of San Isidro."

Filipinos captured by General Lawton amusing themselves at Fort Santiago, Manila, 1899.

After San Isidro fell, Lawton was eager to press ontoTarlac. On May 17th, he wired headquarters that his provisions could be made to hold out until the 30th. He was well supplied with ammunition. Nevertheless he was ordered to fall back.

The Times, Washington, D.C., May 19, 1899

In the interim, an arrangement was made for the entry of a Filipino Peace Commission; it was composed of Gen. Gregorlo del Pllar, Capt. Lorenzo Zialcita, Alberto Barretto and Gracio Gonzaga, who desired to go to Manila for a conference with the Schurman Commission and with a view to the termination of hostilities. They came within the American lines on May 18th, and the next morning started for Manila, accompanied by 2Lt. Edward L. King of the 8th Cavalry.

As soon as Lawton began a retrograde movement, the scattered Filipino forces reassembled and attacked his columns as they withdrew through Cabiao, Arayat, and Candaba. A permanent garrison was left at Baliuag. The proximity of the rainy season had been cited as a reason for the abandonment of the forward movement.

General Otis knew that rains made the muddy roads virtually impassable for re-supply wagons. He feared that Lawton might get isolated and his forces cut to pieces by the surrounding Filipinos.

May 22-23, 1899: Filipinos negotiate with the Schurman Commission

With the Philippine army unable to contain the American offensive, President Emilio Aguinaldo created a peace commission to negotiate an armistice. He appointed 23-year-old General Gregorio del Pilar to head the Filipino panel, with Captain Lorenzo Zialcita, Alberto Barretto and Gracio Gonzaga as members.

May 22-23, 1899:   The Filipinos conferred with the U.S. First Philippine Commission, also known as the Schurman Commission, at the house occupied by the Americans at Malate district, Manila.

The Philippine government was represented by, left to right:  Captain Lorenzo Zialcita, Alberto Barretto, General Gregorio del Pilar, and Gracio Gonzaga.  [Captain Zialcita, who had taken a business course in Hong Kong, spoke English; General Del Pilar was killed in action at Tirad Pass, Concepcion, Ilocos Sur Province on Dec. 2, 1899].

The members of the Schurman Commission, left to right:  Jacob Schurman (Chairman), Charles Denby, Dean C. Worcester, and John MacArthur (Secretary).

The armistice sought by the Filipinos was rejected. The American panel insisted on the recognition of United States sovereignty which the Filipinos understood to mean the unconditional surrender of the Filipino army.

Ten days later, on June 2, Pedro Paterno, the head of Aguinaldo's cabinet,  issued a manifesto recognizing the futility of the peace efforts with the Americans and exhorted all Filipinos to continue the struggle: "To war, then, beloved brothers, to war."

House occupied by the US First Philippine Commission (aka Schurman Commission) at Malate district, Manila. Photo was taken in 1900.

Living room of the house occupied by the US First Philippine Commission

The War in 1900-1901: African Americans in the Fil-Am War

Companies from the segregated Black 24th and 25th  infantry regiments reported to the Presidio of San Francisco in early 1899. They arrived in the Philippines on July 30 and Aug. 1, 1899. The 9th and 10th Cavalry regiments were sent to the Philippines as reinforcements, and by late summer of 1899, all four regular Black regiments plus Black national guardsmen had been brought into the war against the Filipino "Insurectos."  The two Black volunteer infantry regiments  -- 49th and 48th -- arrived in Manila on January 2 and 25, 1900, respectively.

African American soldiers of Troop E, 9th Cavalry Regiment before shipping out to the Philippines in 1900.  Up to 7,000 Blacks saw action in the Philippines.

African American soldiers of Troop C, 9th Cavalry Regiment, at Camp Lawton, Washington State, before shipping out to the Philippines in 1900

9th Cavalry soldiers on foot, somewhere in Luzon Island.

The U.S. Army viewed its "Buffalo soldiers" as having an extra advantage in fighting in tropical locations.  There was an unfounded belief that African-Americans were immune to tropical diseases.   Based on this belief the U.S. congress authorized the raising of ten regiments of "persons possessing immunity to tropical diseases."  These regiments would later be called "Immune Regiments".

Many Black newspaper articles and leaders supported Filipino independence and felt that it was wrong for the US to subjugate non-whites in the development of a colonial empire. Some Black soldiers expressed their conscientious objection to Black newspapers.  Pvt. William Fulbright saw the U.S. conducting "a gigantic scheme of robbery and oppression." Trooper Robert L. Campbell insisted "these people are right and we are wrong and terribly wrong" and said he would not serve as a soldier because no man "who has any humanity about him at all would desire to fight against such a cause as this." Black Bishop Henry M. Turner characterized the venture in the Philippines as "an unholy war of conquest".  

African American soldiers during the Philippine-American War in undated photo.

Many Black soldiers increasingly felt they were being used in an unjust racial war. One Black private wrote that “the white man’s prejudice followed the Negro to the Philippines, ten thousand miles from where it originated.”

The Filipinos subjected Black soldiers to psychological warfare. Posters and leaflets addressed to "The Colored American Soldier" described the lynching and discrimination against Blacks in the US and discouraged them from being the instrument of their white masters' ambitions to oppress another "people of color." Blacks who deserted to the Filipino nationalist cause would be welcomed.

One soldier related a conversation with a young Filipino boy: “Why does the American Negro come to fight us where we are a friend to him and have not done anything to him. He is all the same as me and me the same as you. Why don’t you fight those people in America who burn Negroes, that make a beast of you?”
Another Black soldier, when asked by a white trooper why he had come to the Philippines, replied sarcastically: “Why doan’ know, but I ruther reckon we’re sent over here to take up de white man’s burden.”

The Black 24th Infantry Regiment marching in Manila. Photo taken in 1900.

One of the Black deserters, Private David Fagen of the 24th Infantry, born in Tampa, Florida in 1875, became notorious as "Insurecto Captain". On Nov. 17, 1899, Fagen, assisted by a Filipino officer who had a horse waiting for him near the company barracks, slipped into the jungle and headed for the Filipinos' sanctuary at Mount Arayat. The New York Times described him as a “cunning and highly skilled guerilla officer who harassed and evaded large conventional American units.” From August 30, 1900 to January 17, 1901, he battled eight times with American troops. 

Brig. Gen. Frederick Funston put a $600 price on Fagen's head and passed word the deserter was "entitled to the same treatment as a mad dog." Posters of him in Tagalog and Spanish appeared in every Nueva Ecija town, but he continued to elude capture.

Hunters with indigenous Aetas, circa 1898-1899

On Dec. 5, 1901, Anastacio Bartolome, a Tagalog hunter, delivered to American authorities the severed head of a “negro” he claimed to be Fagen. While traveling with his hunting party, Bartolome reported that he had spied upon Fagen and his Filipina wife accompanied by a group of indigenous people called Aetas bathing in a river.

The hunters attacked the group and allegedly killed and beheaded Fagen, then buried his body near the river. But this story has never been confirmed and there is no record of Bartolome receiving a reward.  Official army records of the incident refer to it as the “supposed killing of David Fagen,” and several months later, Philippine Constabulary reports still made references to occasional sightings of Fagen. 

The Indianapolis Freeman, issue dated Oct. 14, 1899, features Edward Lee Baker, Jr., an African-American US Army Sergeant Major, awarded the Medal of Honor for actions in Cuba. Founded in 1888 by Edward C. Cooper, it was the first Black national illustrated  newspaper in the US.The article at right, included in this issue although datelined Aug. 18, 1899, describes the movements of the 24th Infantry Regiment while campaigning in the Philippines.

A Black newspaper, the Indianapolis Freeman, editorialized in December, 1901, "Fagen was a traitor and died a traitor's death, but he was a man no doubt prompted by honest motives to help a weakened side, and one he felt allied by bonds that bind."

During the war, 20 U.S. soldiers, 6 of them Black, would defect to Aquinaldo. Two of the deserters, both Black, were hanged by the US Army. They were Privates Lewis Russell and Edmond Dubose, both of the 9th Cavalry, who were executed before a crowd of 3,000 in Albay Province.

Black and white American soldiers with Signal Corps flag

Nevertheless, it was also felt by most African Americans that a good military showing by Black troops in the Philippines would reflect favorably and enhance their cause in the US.

The sentiments of most Black soldiers in the Philippines would be summed up by Commissary Sergeant Middleton W. Saddler of the 25th Infantry, who wrote, "We are now arrayed to meet a common foe, men of our own hue and color. Whether it is right to reduce these people to submission is not a question for soldiers to decide. Our oaths of allegiance know neither race, color, nor nation."

Although most Blacks were distressed by the color line that had been immediately established in the Philippines and by the epithet "niggers", which white soldiers applied to Filipinos, they joined whites in calling them "gugus". A black lieutenant of the 25th Infantry wrote his wife that he had occasionally subjected Filipinos to the water torture.

Capt. William H. Jackson of the 49th Infantry admitted his men identified racially with the Filipinos but grimly noted "all enemies of the U.S. government look alike to us, hence we go on with the killing."

The Black 24th Infantry Regiment drilling at Camp Walker, Cebu Island. Photo was taken in 1902.

Jan. 7, 1900: Battle of Imus, Cavite Province

Photo taken in 1900

On Jan. 7, 1900, the 28th Infantry Regiment of US Volunteers, commanded by Col. William E. Birkhimer, engaged a large body of Filipinos at Imus, Cavite Province.

Original caption:  "Filipinos firing on the American out-posts, P.I."  Photo was taken in 1900, location not specified.

Original caption:  "The rude ending of delusion's dream ---Insurgent on the Battlefield of Imus, Philippines."

Four soldiers of Company M, 28th Infantry Regiment of US Volunteers. Photo was taken in 1900. The regiment arrived in the Philippines on Nov. 22 and 23, 1899. It was commanded by Col. William E. Birkhimer.

The Americans suffered 8 men wounded, and reported that 245 Filipinos were killed and wounded.

Licerio Topacio, Presidente Municipal (Mayor) of Imus, with two Filipino priests. PHOTO was taken in 1899.

January 14-15, 1900: Battle of Mt. Bimmuaya in Ilocos Sur

US artillery supporting the infantry.   Photo taken in 1900, location not specified

On Jan. 14-15, 1900, the only artillery duel of the war was fought in Mount Bimmuaya, a summit 1,000 meters above the Cabugao River, northwest of Cabugao, Ilocos Sur Province. It is a place with an unobstructed view of the coastal plain from Vigan to Laoag. The Americans -- from the 33rd Infantry Regiment USV, and the 3rd US Cavalry Regiment -- also employed Gatling guns and prevailed mainly because their locations were concealed by their use of smokeless gunpowder so that Filipino aim was wide off the mark.

It was believed that General Manuel Tinio, and his officers  Capt. Estanislao Reyes  and Capt. Francisco Celedonio were present at this encounter but got away unscathed.

Elements of this same 33rd Infantry unit had killed General Gregorio del Pilar earlier on Dec. 2, 1899, at Tirad Pass, southeast of Candon, llocos Sur.

The Battle of Mt. Bimmuaya diverted and delayed US troops from their chase of President Emilio Aguinaldo as the latter escaped through Abra and the mountain provinces. After the two-day battle, 28 unidentified fighters from Cabugao were found buried in unmarked fresh graves in the camposanto (cemetery).

General Tinio switched to guerilla warfare and harassed the American garrisons in the different towns of  the Ilocos for almost 1½ years.

January 20, 1900: Americans invade the Bicol Region

In early 1900, during their successful operations in the northern half of Luzon Island, the Americans decided to open the large hemp ports situated in the southeastern Luzon provinces of Sorsogon, Albay and Camarines, all in the Bicol region.

Brig. Gen. William A. Kobbe (ABOVE, in 1900) was relieved from duty on the south Manila line and ordered to seize the desired points. His expeditionary force was composed of the 43rd and 47th Volunteer Infantry Regiments, and Battery G , 3rd Artillery. He sailed on the afternoon of January 18, with the transport Hancock and two coasting vessels, theCastellano and Venus. His command was convoyed by the gunboats Helena andNashviIlle.

On January 20, the Americans entered Sorsogon Bay and took possession, without opposition, of the town of Sorsogon, where Kobbe left a small garrison. They proceeded to the small hemp ports of Bulan and Donsol, at each of which a company of the 43rd Infantry was placed. The expedition then sailed through the San Bernardino Strait to confront the Filipinos at Albay Province.

The main street and cathedral in Legaspi, Albay Province. PHOTO was taken in 1899.

On January 23, at Legaspi, Albay, Generals Jose Ignacio Paua and Vito Belarmino (LEFT) put up a strong resistance against the 47th US Infantry but in the end had to retreat; 7 Americans were wounded, and 50 Filipinos killed and wounded. 

On January 24, Virac, Catanduanes Island (then a part of Albay Province), was taken by the Americans without a shot being fired.

On February 8, Tabaco, Albay was captured and on February 23, Nueva Caceres (today's Naga City), Camarines fell. 

Paua (RIGHT, in 1898) surrendered on March 27, 1900 in Legaspi to Col. Walter Howe, Commanding Officer of the 47th Infantry Regiment.

Paua  was the only pure Chinese in the Philippine army.

He was born on April 29, 1872 in a poor village of Lao-na inFujian province, China.

In 1890, he accompanied his uncle to seek his fortune in the Philippines. He worked as a blacksmith on Jaboneros Street, Binondo, Manila.  

Paua joined the Katipunan in 1896. His knowledge as blacksmith served him in good stead. He repaired native cannons called lantakas and many other kinds of weaponry. He set up an ammunition factory in Imus, Cavite where cartridges were filled up with home-made gunpowder. [On the side, he courted Antonia Jamir, Emilio Aguinaldo's cousin]. 

He also taught the Filipinos how to melt metals, including church bells, for the manufacture of arms and bullets. He raised money for the Philippine army, much of it from his fellow Chinese. Paua proved himself in battles against the Spanish at Binakayan, Zapote, Perez Dasmariñas, Salitran, Imus, among others.

On April 26, 1897, then-Major Paua, Col. Agapito Bonzon and their men attacked and arrested Katipunan Supremo Andres Bonifacio and his brother Procopio inbarrio Limbon, Indang, Cavite Province; Andres was shot in the left arm and his other brother, Ciriaco, was killed. Paua jumped and stabbed Andres in the left side of the neck. From Indang, a half-starved and wounded Bonifacio was carried by hammock to Naik, Cavite, which had become Emilio Aguinaldo’s headquarters. The Bonifacio brothers were executed on May 10, 1897.

Paua (LEFT) was the only foreigner who signed the 1897 Biyak-na-Bato Constitution. He was among 36 Filipino rebel leaders who went in exile to Hong Kong by virtue of the Dec. 14, 1897 Peace Pact of Biyak-na-bato.

Emilio Aguinaldo and the other exiles returned to Manila on May 19, 1898. The revolution against Spain entered its second phase.

On June 12, 1898, when Aguinaldo proclaimed Philippine independence in Kawit, Cavite, Paua cut off his queue (braid). When General Pantaleon Garcia and his other comrades teased him about it, Paua said: "Now that you are free from your foreign master, I am also freed from my queue."

[The queue, for the Chinese, is a sign of humiliation and subjugation because it was imposed on them by the Manchu rulers of the Qing dynasty. The Chinese revolutionaries in China cut off their queues only in 1911 when they finally toppled the Manchu government.]

On Oct. 29, 1898, Paua was included in the force led by General Vito Belarmino that was sent to the Bicol region; Belarmino assumed the position of military commander of the provinces of Albay, Camarines and Sorsogon.

Paua married Carolina Imperial, a native of Albay; he retired in Albay and was once elected town mayor of Manito. He told his wife and children: “I want to live long enough to see the independence of our beloved country and to behold the Filipino flag fly proudly and alone in our skies.”

His dream was not realized because he died of cancer in Manila on May 24, 1926 at the age of 54.

February 5, 1900: Ambush at Hermosa, Bataan Province

A supply detail from Company G, 32nd Infantry Regiment U.S.V., is ambushed near Hermosa, Bataan Province.  PHOTO was taken on Feb. 5, 1900.  Source: Archives of the 32nd Infantry Regimental Association

On Feb. 5, 1900, a supply train of Company G, 32nd Infantry Regiment of  U.S. Volunteers, was ambushed near Hermosa, Bataan Province. The 11-man detail was commanded by Sgt. Clarence D. Wallace. It was sent from Dinalupihan by the Company Commander, Capt. Frank M. Rumbold, to escort Capt. William H. Cook, regimental assistant surgeon, to Orani. On arrival, the soldiers would report to the commissary officer for rations, which they were to escort back to Dinalupihan. It was while on their return trip that the party was ambushed; 6 Americans were killed. It was one of the deadliest ambuscades of U.S. troops in the war.

Forty-eight hours before this occurrence, detachments of the 32nd Infantry Regiment scouted the country south of Orani, west to Bagac, north to Dinalupihan, and west to Olongapo, without finding any trace of Filipino guerillas. Following the ambush, all American units in the province were directed to exercise extraordinary vigilance on escort and similar duty.

32nd Infantry Regiment headquarters at Balanga, Bataan Province

The regiment, commanded by Col. Louis A. Craig, was based in Balanga, Bataan Province. It posted companies of troops in Abucay, Balanga, Dinalupihan, Mariveles, Orani and Orion, and the towns of Floridablanca and Porac in neighboring Pampanga Province.

Execution of Filipinos, circa 1900-1901

Four doomed Filipinos --- in leg irons --- are photographed moments before their execution by hanging, circa 1900-1901

The Filipinos were hanged one at a time

American soldiers and sailors, and some Filipino civil officials pose for a "souvenir" photo with the coffins bearing the bodies of the executed men

SIMULTANEOUS HANGING OF FOUR FILIPINOSOriginal caption: "The Philippine Islands. Hanging Insurgents at Cavite". Circa 1900.

The U.S. Army executes a Filipino, circa 1900.

Original caption:  "Hanging at Caloocan, after the drop".  Two Filipino doctors are checking the limp bodies for signs of life. Circa 1900

Original caption:  "American execution of Philippine insurrectionists."  PHOTO was taken circa 1900-1901.

CLOSE-UP of preceding photo. The Americans are seen here placing the nooses around the two Filipinos' necks.

War in Bohol, March 17, 1900 - Dec. 23, 1901

US "Bill" Battery outside of barracks in Tagbilaran, Bohol

On March 17, 1900,  200 troops of the 1st Battalion, 44th Infantry Regiment of U.S. Volunteers (USV), led by Maj. Harry C. Hale, arrived in Tagbilaran. Bohol was one of the last major islands in the Philippines to be invaded by American troops. Bernabe Reyes, "President" of the "Republic of Bohol" established on June 11, 1899, separate from Emilio Aguinaldo's national government, did not resist.  Major Hale hired and outfitted Pedro Samson to build an insular police force.  In late August, he took off and emerged a week later as the island's leading  guerilla. 

Soldiers of the 44th U.S. Volunteer Infantry Regiment at Tubigon, Bohol, 1900.

Company C of the 44th U.S. Volunteers encountered Samson on Aug. 31, 1900 near Carmen. The guerillas were armed  with bolos, a few antique muskets and "anting-anting" or amulets. More than 100 guerillas died. The Americans lost only one man.

Chocolate Hills, Carmen, Bohol

Two hundred men from the 19th U.S. Regular Infantry Regiment led by Capt. Andrew S. Rowan, West Point Class 1881 (LEFT),  reinforced the Americans on Bohol.

On Sept. 3, 1900,  they clashed with Pedro Samson in the Chocolate Hills.  From then on through December, US troops and guerillas met in a number of engagements in the island's interior, mostly in the mountains back of Carmen. Samson's force consisted of Boholanos, Warays from Samar and Leyte, and Ilonggos from Panay Island. They lacked firepower; most of them were armed simply with machetes.

The Americans resorted to torture --most often "water cure"--and a scorched-earth policy: prominent civilians were tortured; 20 of the 35 towns of Bohol were razed, and livestock was butchered wantonly to deprive the guerillas of food. 

In May 1901, when a US soldier raped a Filipina, her fiance murdered him. In retaliation, Capt. Andrew S. Rowan torched the town of Jagna. On June 14-15, 1901, US troops clashed with Samson in the plain between Sevilla and Balilihan; Samson escaped, but Sevilla and Balilihan were burned to the ground.

Original caption:  "Burning of native huts."

On Nov. 4, 1901, Brig. Gen. Robert Hughes, US commander for the Visayas, landed another 400 men at Loay. Torture and the burning of villages and towns picked up. (At US Senate hearings in 1902, when Brig. Gen. Robert Hughes described the burning of entire towns in Bohol by U.S. troops to Senator Joseph Rawlins as a means of "punishment," and Rawlins inquired: "But is that within the ordinary rules of civilized warfare?..." General Hughes replied succinctly: "These people are not civilized.")

American soldiers "water cure" a Filipino. Maj. Gen. Adna R. Chaffee, military governor of the "unpacified areas" of the Philippines, 1901-1902,  ordered the US Army to "Obtain information from natives no matter what measures have to be adopted."  Photo Source: Abraham Ignacio Collection, www.presidio.gov

At Inabanga, the Americans killed the mayor and water-cured to death the entire local police force. The mayor of Tagbilaran did not escape the water cure.  At Loay, the Americans broke the arm of the parish priest and used whiskey, instead of water, when they gave him the "water cure". Major Edwin F. Glenn, who had personally approved the tortures, was later court-martialed.

Church in Dimiao, Bohol

On Dec. 23, 1901, at 3:00 pm, Pedro Samson signed an armistice in the convent of Dimiao town.  He arrived with 175 guerillas. That night at an army-sponsored fete there were speeches and a dance.

On Feb. 3, 1902,  the first American-sponsored elections were held on Bohol and Aniceto Clarin, a wealthy landowner and an American favorite, was voted governor. The Philippine Constabulary assumed the US army's responsibilities and the last American troops departed in May 1902.

Guerilla Resistance On Mindanao Island, 1900-1902

BATTLE OF CAGAYAN DE MISAMIS, APRIL 7, 1900. When the Treaty of Paris ended the Spanish-American War on Dec. 10, 1898, the Spanish governor of Misamis Province  turned over his authority to two Filipinos appointed by Emilio Aguinaldo: Jose Roa, who became the first Filipino governor of Misamis; and Toribio Chavez, who served as the first Filipino mayor of Cagayan de Misamis (now Cagayan de Oro City).  [On Nov. 2, 1929, Misamis Province was divided into Misamis Occidental and Misamis Oriental].

On Jan. 10-11, 1899, Cagayan de Misamis celebrated Philippine independence by holding a "Fiesta Nacional." The people held a parade and fired cannons outside the Casa Real (where the present city hall --- inaugurated on Aug. 26, 1940 ---stands). For the first time, the Philippine Flag was raised on Mindanao island.

On March 31, 1900, Companies A, C, D and M of  the 40th Infantry Regiment of US Volunteers (USV) invaded Cagayan de Misamis. The regimental commander was Col. Edward A. Godwin. Prior to landing, the Americans bombarded Macabalan wharf, with the flagpole flying the Philippine Flag as the primary target. The wharf was about 5 kilometers distant from the town center.

Guard mount of the 40th Infantry Regiment, USV, at Cagayan de Misamis (now Cagayan de Oro City). Photo taken in 1900. The stone Church of San Agustin was built in 1845 but was destroyed in 1945 during World War II. It was rebuilt into a cathedral.

The Americans set up their barracks in the town center, just beside the present St. Agustine Cathedral.

On Friday, April 6, 1900, a newly formed guerilla force led by General Nicolas Capistrano descended 9 kilometers from their camp in Gango plateau in Libona, Bukidnon Province, Mindanao Island. Numbering several hundred, the guerillas planned to attack the Americans in their barracks.

At dawn of Saturday, April 7, 1900, the bells of San Agustin Church pealed; this was the signal for the guerillas to proceed with the attack. First to attack were the macheteros, who were armed only with bolos; they carried ladders which they used to scale the barracks where the Americans slept. They were followed by the riflemen and cavalrymen who, for the most part, were armed with old rifles.
General Capistrano and his staff stood on the spot where the present water tower stands (constructed in 1922). Capistrano directed his commanders through couriers and hand signals. But his plan for a sneak attack was foiled when Bukidnon lumad ("ethnic minority")  warriors who were among the macheteros, raised battle cries as they killed an American sentry guarding the Chauco Building where the American commander was sleeping.

American soldiers in Cagayan de Misamis, 1900

The noise roused the Americans; they grabbed their weapons and fired at their attackers from the windows of the barracks. Some American soldiers climbed the Church bell tower where they fired at the poorly armed guerillas. The fighting was centered at the town plaza, the present Gaston Park. The battle raged for an hour. The macheteros, who crashed the barracks, engaged the Americans in fierce hand-to-hand combat. Captain Apolinario Pabayo, an officer of the macheteros, was among the first to die. Themacheteros' leader, Captain Clemente Chacon, tried to climb up the Club Popular Building (the site is now occupied by the St. Agustine Maternity and General Hospital), but was repelled twice and had to scramble down due to a gaping head wound from an American bayonet.
When General Capistrano realized that the attack had gone bad, he ordered a retreat. The Americans pursued the Filipinos to the edge of town.

"SIETE DE ABRIL":    Centennial commemoration of the Battle of Cagayan de Misamis (now Cagayan de Oro City).

In his annual report for 1900, Maj. Gen. Arthur C. MacArthur, Jr., listed 4 Americans killed and 9 wounded, and 52 Filipinos killed, 9 wounded and 10 captured. (A Filipino account reported that 200 Filipinos were killed).  Later, one of the old streets in the city was named "Heroes de Cagayan" in honor of the Cagayan and Misamis guerillas who took part in the battle. It has since been renamed Pacana Street.

On July 14, 1900, the Americans at Cagayan de Misamis were reinforced by 170 men of the 23rd Infantry Regiment USV and 2 Maxim-Nordenfeldt guns (ABOVE).

Guardhouse of the 40th Infantry Regiment, U.S. Volunteers, in Cagayan de Misamis (now Cagayan de Oro City)

The band of the 40th Infantry Regiment, U.S. Volunteers, at Cagayan de Misamis (now Cagayan de Oro City), circa 1900-1901.

Americans playing baseball, circa 1900-1901

BATTLE OF AGUSAN HILL, MAY 14, 1900. Capt. Walter B. Elliott, CO of Company I, 40th Infantry Regiment USV,  with 80 men proceeded to the village of Agusan, about 16 kilometers west of Cagayan de Misamis town proper, to dislodge about 500 guerillas who were entrenched on a hill with 200 rifles and shotguns. The attack was successful; 2 Americans were killed and 3 wounded; the Filipinos suffered 38 killed, including their commander, Capt. Vicente Roa. The Americans also captured 35 Remington rifles.

RUFINO DELOSO'S GUERILLA FORCE, MAY 14, 1900 - 1902. Rufino Deloso led a force of 400 guerillas in Misamis Province (in areas that are now in Misamis Occidental) and engaged the Americans in no less than 20 encounters. On March 7, 1902, he surrendered to Senior Inspector John W. Green of the Philippine Constabulary in Oroquieta, Misamis Province. He gave up with 20 riflemen and 250 bolo men.

Filipino guerillas killed in battle, Misamis Province, circa 1900-1901

Cartload of dead Filipino guerillas in Oroquieta, Misamis Province, circa 1900-1901

"CAPITAN" EUSTAQUIO DALIGDIG:   Daligdig was a settler from Siquijor Island. He organized a rebel force against Spain, with the town of Daisog (now Lopez Jaena, Misamis Occidental) as his base of operations. "Capitan" Daligdig became a household name throughout Misamis Province; the common folk believed he possessed an "anting-anting" (amulet) that enabled him to fly and made his body impervious to bullets.

The guerilla leader in the Oroquieta-Laungan area led numerous assaults against the Oroquieta Garrison of the Americans. On Jan. 6, 1901, he was wounded at Manella,  when 40 men of Companies I and E, 40th Infantry Regiment USV, attacked his encampment. Two of his men were killed and 24 captured, but Daligdig managed to escape through the thicket.  Later, he availed himself of the general amnesty proclaimed by the US colonial administration on July 4, 1902. He changed his last name to "Sumili" to escape retribution from relatives of civilians he had executed for treason.

Filipino guerilla chief killed in action in Oroquieta, Misamis Province, circa 1900-1901

Medic attends to wounded American soldier in Misamis Province, circa 1900-1901

American troops fording a river in Misamis Province, circa 1900-1901

BATTLE OF MACAHAMBUS GORGE, JUNE 4, 1900. On Macahambus Gorge, located 14 kilometers south of Cagayan de Misamis  (present-day Cagayan de Oro City),  Mindanao Island, Filipino guerillas led by Col. Apolinar Velez routed an American force. It is the only known major victory of Filipinos over the Americans on Mindanao Island.

Macahambus Gorge

Capt. Thomas Millar, CO of Company H,  Fortieth Infantry Regiment USV, led 100 men  against the guerillas who were either well-entrenched, or in inaccessible positions, in the gorge. Practically surrounded by an enemy they could not reach, the Americans lost in a short time 9 men killed, and 2 officers and 7 men  wounded, nearly all belonging to the advance guard. One Filipino guerilla was killed. An attempt to advance against a part of the Filipino position was frustrated by encountering innumerable arrow traps, spear pits and pitfalls to which an officer and several men owe their wounds. To avoid getting annihilated, the Americans quickly withdrew, leaving their dead and most of the rifles of those killed.

In his official report to the US War Department, Maj. Gen. Arthur C. MacArthur, Jr., censured Captain Millar: "The palpable mismanagement in this affair consists in not having reconnoitered the enemy's position, but there appears to be no means of reaching a force intrenched, as was this one, in a carefully selected position, which must be approached in single file through a pathless jungle, nor any reason why it should be attacked at all, because, under the circumstances, it does not threaten our troops nor any natives under their protection, and it is sufficient to keep it under observation."

Americans assault Macahambus Gorge a second time. Photo taken during the period Dec. 19-20, 1900. Captains Thomas Millar and James Mayes jointly led 155 officers and men of the 40th Infantry into the gorge, shelled the guerillas' strongholds, but found them deserted.

Americans inside a deserted guerilla stronghold in Macahambus Gorge. Photo taken during the period Dec. 19-20, 1900.

American encampment at Macahambus. On Dec. 21, 1900, 1Lt. Richard Cravens and a detachment of Company M were ordered to occupy Macahambus.

On Jan. 4, 1901, Apolinar Velez (LEFT, postwar photo) was surprised and captured in Opol town, Misamis Province, by Maj. James F. Case, who led a force of 40 mounted men of Company L, 40th Infantry Regiment USV.  

Velez was born on Jan 23, 1865, to a wealthy family in Cagayan de Misamis. In 1884, he worked as a clerk in the court of first instance of Misamis. From 1886 to 1891, he held the positions of oficial de mesa,interpreter, and defensor depresos pobres. On May 10, 1887, he married Leona Chaves y Roa, thus linking two of the most prominent clans in Misamis.

He enlisted in the Spanish army and became a second lieutenant of infantry. He was decorated with the Medalla de Mindanao.

In 1898, he joined Aguinaldo's government; he was appointed chief of the division of justice of the Revolutionary Government of Misamis. In 1900, he was assigned the rank of major in the army and appointed as commander of the "El Mindanao" battalion. He later rose to the rank of Colonel.

From 1901 to 1906, Velez held the post of provincial secretary after which he was elected governor of Misamis and served for two terms. In 1928-1931, he served as mayor of Cagayan de Misamis. 

He died on Oct. 21, 1939.

GENERAL VICENTE ALVAREZ ATTACKS OROQUIETA, JULY 12, 1900. General Alvarez, who  headed the short-lived "Republica de Zamboanga" (May 18, 1899 - Nov. 16, 1899), moved to Misamis Province and assaulted the garrison of Company I, 40th Infantry USV, in Oroquieta on July 12, 1900.

He and his men were repulsed. The Americans reported 2 killed and 1 wounded on their side, and 101 Filipinos killed and wounded.

On Oct. 17, 1900, General Alvarez, his staff and 25 men were surprised in their camp  near Oroquieta and captured without a fight by Capt. Walter B. Elliott, commanding officer of Company I, 40th Infantry Regiment USV. The Americans took advantage of the cover provided by the stormy night.

An American newspaper reported: "The capture is important and will tend to pacify the district. Alvarez had been for a long time provoking hostilities in Mindanao. It was he who effected the disastrous attack on Oroquieta some time ago and he was preparing another when he was captured."   [RIGHT, Monument to General Vicente Alvarez in Zamboanga City]

Alvarez was already serving as a high official in the Spanish colonial administration when he turned around and joined the revolution against Spain in March 1898. He led his forces in the successful capture of Zamboanga in May 1898. President and General Emilio Aguinaldo appointed him as head of the revolutionary government of Zamboanga and Basilan.

He was born in 1854 and died in 1910.

April 15, 1900: Battle of Jaro, Leyte

The American barracks at Jaro, Leyte, occupied by a detachment of Company B, 43rd Infantry Regiment of U.S. Volunteers, was attacked at 4:00 a.m. by about 1,000 Filipino guerillas. The detachment commander was 2Lt. Charles C. Estes. [The Company Commander was Capt. Linwood E. Hanson].

Original caption:  "Rapid Fire Gatling Gun on Firing Line, 600 Shots per Minute, Philippine Islands."

The battle lasted for four hours. The Americans reported 125 Filipinos killed, with no casualties on their side.

Jaro is an interior town located 39 kilometers northwest of  present-day Tacloban City.

Battle of Catubig, Samar: April 15-18, 1900

Church of St. Joseph, Catubig, Samar

On April 15, 1900, 300 Catubig militiamen led by Domingo Rebadulla laid siege on 31 men of Company H, 43rd Infantry of US Volunteers, commanded by Sgt. Dustin L. George, who were quartered in the convent of the Church of St. Joseph. The militia was later reinforced by about 600 men from Gen. Vicente Lukban's army.

The Americans managed to withdraw to the bank of the river where they entrenched themselves. On the 19th, 1Lt. Joseph T. Sweeney, with a dozen men, effected a landing and brought the hard-pressed soldiers away..

The Americans reported 19 dead and 3 wounded and estimated Filipino losses at 200 dead and many wounded.

The U.S. War Department recorded the event as “…the heaviest bloody encounter yet for the American troops” against the Filipino freedom fighters.

The New York Times called the Battle of Catubig, “horrifying”.

Cpl. Anthony J. Carson, of Boston, Massachusetts, was given the U.S. highest military award, the Congressional Medal of Honor, for his, according to the citation:

“Assuming command of a detachment of the company which had survived an overwhelming attack of the enemy, and by his bravery and untiring effort and the exercise of good judgment in the handling of his men successfully withstood for 2 days the attacks of a large force of the enemy, thereby saving the lives of the survivors and protecting the wounded until relief came.”

Domingo Rebadulla was later elected as the first mayor of Catubig under the US regime.

April 16-25, 1900: Major battles in Ilocos Norte

In 7 encounters during the period April 16-25, 1900, 453 of  Father Gregorio Aglipay's poorly-armed men died in action in Vintar, Laoag and Batac. The Americans suffered only a total of 3 men killed in these engagements.

On April 16, Capt. Frank L. French, with a detachment of the 33rd Infantry Regiment of United States Volunteers (USV), known as the "Texas Regiment" because of the popular belief that it was composed of ex-cowboys, struck a body of about 100 Filipinos in the mountains north of Vintar, killing 23 and suffering no casualties.

On April 17, the town of Laoag, garrisoned by Companies F, G and H, 34th Infantry Regiment, USV, and commanded by Lt. Col. Robert Lee Howze, West Point Class 1888 (LEFT), was attacked by about 200 Filipinos, armed with 20 rifles and the rest with bolos(machetes) and clubs. The Filipinos suffered 44 dead, 16 wounded and 70 captured.  The Americans were unscathed. 

On the same day, 1Lt. Arthur G. Duncan, commanding 8 men of the 34th Infantry Regiment, USV, met 300 Filipinos with 70 rifles in the mountains near Laoag, killed 29 and captured 22. The Filipinos, upon discovering the smallness of the enemy patrol, went after the Americans. 

Duncan and his men retreated toward Batac, where Capt. Christopher J. Rollis prepared for them. The Filipinos, now numbering about 600, made a determined attack, but were repulsed, suffering a loss of 180 killed and 72 prisoners. American casualties were 2 men killed and 3 wounded.

On April 18, Capt. George Allen Dodd, West Point Class 1876, in command of a detachment of the 3rd Cavalry, met a group of 180 Filipinos, with 70 rifles, near Cullebeng. After one hour's fighting, 53 Filipinos were killed, 4 wounded and 44 taken prisoner. One American was slightly wounded. Captain Dodd also captured 10 horses.

Original caption:  "Our brave scouts firing on the fleeing Filipinos, P.I."  Photo was taken in 1900, location not specified.

On April 19, 1Lt. Arthur Thayer with a detachment of  Troop A, 3rd Cavalry, skirmished with 25 Filipinos near Batac and killed 4. One American soldier was killed.

On April 25, Capt. George Allen Dodd (RIGHT, as Colonel in 1916), with a detachment of the 3rd Cavalry, struck about 300 Filipinos armed with rifles, bolos and spears near Batac. The engagement lasted one hour and fifteen minutes.

The Filipinos had 120 killed, 5 taken prisoner and 12 horses captured. The only American casualty was a Sergeant Cook who was slightly cut by a spear.  

April 25, 1900: Marinduque

April 25, 1900: Soldiers of the 29th US Volunteer Infantry Regiment wading ashore on Marinduque Island

Marinduque was the first island to have American concentration camps. An American, Andrew Birtle, wrote in 1972:  "The pacification of Marinduque was characterized by extensive devastation and marked one of the earliest employments of population concentration in the Philippine War, techniques that would eventually be used on a much larger scale in the two most famous campaigns of the war, those of Brigadier Generals J. Franklin Bell in Batangas and Jacob H. Smith in Samar."

Company F, 29th US Volunteer Infantry Regiment

Marinduque is the site of the Battle of Pulang Lupa, where on Sept. 13, 1900, Filipino guerillas under Col. Maximo Abad ambushed a 54-man detachment of Company F, 29th US Volunteer Infantry, led by Capt. Devereaux Shields. Four Americans were killed, while the rest were forced to surrender.

The defeat shocked the American high command. Aside from being one of the worst defeats suffered by the Americans during the war, it was especially significant given its proximity to the upcoming election between President William Mckinley and his anti-imperialist opponent William Jennings Bryan, the outcome of which many believed would determine the ultimate course of the war. Consequently, the defeat triggered a sharp response.

American patrol with Filipino boys at a village. Photo taken in 1900, location not specified

Americans patrol with fixed bayonets. Photo taken in 1900, location not specified

An American patrol routs a Filipino reconnoitering party.  Photo taken in 1900, location not specified

April 30, 1900: Battle of Catarman, Samar Province

Catarman is a town on the north coast of Samar island, situated on the Catarman River, 55 miles northeast of Catbalogan.

On April 30, 1900, at about 9:30 p.m., Filipino guerillas sneaked into town and attacked Company F, 43rd Infantry Regiment USV. The Americans, commanded by Capt. John Cooke, were garrisoned in the convent of the church.

The Filipinos, estimated to number between 500 and 600 with 100 rifles, drove in the outposts, wounding one US soldier. The rest of the American sentinels retreated into the convent. The Americans decided to wait until daylight. During the night, there was desultory firing on both sides.

At daybreak, May 1, the Americans saw that the Filipinos had built trenches on three sides of the convent. The fourth side, dense with underbrush and cut by a path leading to the beach, was left open. After the battle, the Americans discovered that the path was full of mantraps.

Original caption:  "Did not run fast enough to escape the Crag bullet, P.I."  Photo taken in 1900, location not specified.

Captain Cooke, leaving word to keep a rapid fire on the trenches, took 30 men and flanked the trenches on the north side of the convent, driving the Filipinos out and killing 52 of them. He then flanked the trenches on the south side, driving the Filipinos out and killing 57, while having one man wounded.

The Americans then made a general move and the Filipinos were completely driven off.

A total of 154 Filipinos were killed, while the Americans suffered only two men wounded.

May 5, 1900: General MacArthur becomes VIII Army Corps Commander and Military Governor of the Philippines

General MacArthur (4th from LEFT, 1st Row) and his staff, 1900.

On May 5, 1900 Maj. Gen. Arthur C. MacArthur, Jr. replaced Maj. Gen. Elwell S. Otis as VIII Army Corps Commander and Military Governor of the Philippines. 

Malacañan Palace fronting on the Pasig River.   Photo taken in 1899.

He moved into the Malacañan Palace, a Moorish edifice by the Pasig river which had served as the residence of the Spanish governors-general.  His military  command, the Division of the Philippines, the largest in the Army at the time, included 71,727 enlisted men and 2,367 officers in 502 garrisons throughout the country.

Americans and Filipinos drinking beer by the Pasig river.   Photo was taken in 1900.

U.S. soldiers marching on Calle Concordia in Manila. Photo was taken in 1900.

June 15, 1900: General Francisco Makabulos surrenders

On June 15, 1900, General Francisco Makabulos y Soliman surrendered to Colonel Emerson H. Liscum (SEE PHOTO BELOW) of the 9th US Regular Infantry in a barrio in Camiling, Tarlac. He gave up with 9 officers and 124 men; he turned over 124 firearms. He was the last general in Central Luzon to surrender to the Americans, doing so mainly  due to lack of arms and ammunition. A family emergency might have played a big factor, too, in his decision to give up. His wife, Dorotea Pascual, had a difficult childbirth where she nearly lost her life. She pleaded with him to stay by her side and their newborn.

He turned over the large amount of Mexican currency which he had captured from the Spaniards. He need not have to, and nobody would been the wiser, but Makabulos apparently was a man of high integrity.

His surname means "one who prefers to be free." Born in La Paz, Tarlac, on Sept. 17, 1871, he was the son of Alejandro Makabulos, a native of Lubao, Pampanga, and Gregoria Soliman, a native of Tondo, Manila. His mother was a descendant of Rajah Soliman, hero of the 1571 battle of Bangkusay, Manila.

He had no formal education; he learned to write and speak Spanish from his mother. He had an excellent penmanship and served as parish clerk for the town priest for many years.

With the help of Don Valentin Diaz, one of the founders of the Katipunan, he propagated the tenets of the secret revolutionary society throughout Tarlac Province. Makabulos organized his friends and kin into arnis ("fighting stick") and bolo brigades. He started with 70 men, which soon grew in number as people from the nearby towns of Tarlac, Capas, Bamban and Victoria rallied under his banner. On Jan. 24, 1897, Makabulos and his bolo brigades raised the "Cry of Tarlac" and took over the municipal hall of  La Paz during the town fiesta celebration.

In June 1897, in Mt. Puray, Montalban, Morong (now Rizal Province), General Emilio Aguinaldo promoted Makabulos to General of all revolutionary forces in Pampanga, Tarlac, and Pangasinan. He set up his encampment in sitio Kamansi on the slopes of  Mt. Arayat. In November 1897, an assault by a massive Spanish force commanded by General Ricardo Monet dislodged him from his Sinukuan sanctuary.

The Revolution temporarily ceased following the Dec. 14, 1897  Truce of Biyak-na-Bato. His fellow rebel leaders went on exile in Hong Kong but Makabulos distrusted Spanish intentions; he made preparations for the resumption of the revolution. On April 17, 1898, in Lomboy, La Paz,  he set up his Central Directive Committee of Central and Northern Luzon, often referred to as the Makabulos Provisional Government. It functioned under a constitution, the "Makabulos Constitution", which he himself drafted.

He rallied to General Emilio Aguinaldo when the latter returned and renewed the struggle on May 19, 1898. On July 10, 1898, he liberated Tarlac Province from Spanish rule. On July 22, 1898, he liberated Pangasinan Province. He was appointed to the Malolos Congress which opened on Sept. 15, 1898, representing the province of Cebu.

Photo taken in 1900.   The 12th Infantry Regiment (Regulars) occupied 9 towns in Tarlac Province (Badoc, Capas, Concepcion, Gerona, La Paz,  Paniqui, San Nicolas, Tarlac and  Victoria), and 2 towns in Nueva Ecija Province (Cuyapo and Guimba).

The 12th Infantry fording the river near Tarlac Province.

The Filipino-American War saw General Makabulos as politico-military governor of Tarlac Province. He struck a close friendship with GeneralAntonio Luna. On the latter's order, he presided over the execution of  General Pedro Pedroche on the grounds of the Camiling Catholic Church (PHOTO, LEFT). Luna had charged Pedroche with rebellion. When Aguinaldo summoned Luna to come to Cabanatuan for a conference, Luna asked Makabulos to accompany him, but the latter said he was indisposed at the moment but he was going to follow the next day. Makabulos was preparing to go to Cabanatuan when he received news that Luna had been assassinated on June 5, 1899.

Makabulos was a founding member of the pro-American Partido Federal when it was organized on Dec. 23, 1900.

He was elected municipal president of La Paz in 1908, and later served as councilor of Tarlac, Tarlac. 

Makabulos became locally famous as a writer of zarzuelas (plays that alternate between spoken and sung scenes). Among his works were "Uldarico" and "Rosaura." He also wrote a zarzuela out of Balagtas’ "Florante at Laura." He translated the opera "Aida" into Tagalog.

He died of pneumonia in Tarlac on April 30, 1922 at the age of 51. 

Col. Emerson H. Liscum of the US 9th Regular Infantry Regiment in San Fernando, Pampanga Province, on Aug. 1, 1899. A month after accepting General Makabulos' surrender, Col. Liscum was killed in Tientsin, China on July 13, 1900 during the Boxer Rebellion

Sept. 17, 1900: Filipino victory at Mabitac. Laguna

Mabitac is a municipality situated on the eastern side of the province of Laguna.

On Sept. 17, 1900, about 800 Filipinos under General Juan Cailles (LEFT) defeated 145 soldiers of the 37th and 15th Infantry regiments commanded by Colonel Benjamin F. Cheatham, Jr. 

The battle began when the Americans came under intense fire some 400 yards from the Filipino trenches. Eight troopers sent ahead to scout the Filipino positions were all killed. One of the last to fall was 2nd Lieutenant George Cooper. General Cailles, in an honorable gesture, allowed Cheatham to retrieve the bodies of his men. 

The main body of the U.S. Infantry got pinned down in waist-deep mud, still several hundred yards from the Filipino trenches. Captain John E. Moran was later awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor for trying to rally his demoralized comrades.

Supporting fire from a US Navy gunboat (some 1,300 yards distant) and a flank attack by 60 Americans failed to dislodge the Filipinos from their positions.

Photo was taken in 1900, somewhere in Luzon Island

Cheatham withdrew, re-consolidated his forces and prepared to launch another offensive. 

General Cailles ordered a withdrawal in order to avoid envelopment, and by the next day, his entire command had made good its escape. 

The Americans lost 21 killed and 23 wounded; the Filipinos suffered 11 killed and 20 wounded. Among the Filipino dead was Lieutenant Colonel Fidel Sario. 

American Major-General John C. Bates later said of this battle: "It is deemed charitable as well as politic to drop a veil over this matter rather than to give any publicity that can be avoided."

Oct. 14, 1900: Battle of Ormoc, Leyte Island

On Oct. 14, 1900, Company D of the 44th Infantry Regiment USV, commanded by 1Lt Richard W. Buchanan, clashed with Filipino guerillas in Ormoc, Leyte Island. The Americans suffered no casualties, while 116 Filipinos were killed.

Oct. 24, 1900: Ambush at Cosocos, Ilocos Sur Province

Soldiers of Company K, 33rd Volunteer Infantry Regiment, at Narvacan, Ilocos Sur Province. PHOTO was taken in 1900.

On Oct. 24, 1900,  an American force consisting of 40 men of Company H, 33rd Infantry Regiment USV, and 2Lt. Grayson Heidt, with 60 men of Troop L, 3rd Cavalry, left Narvacan, Ilocos Sur Province, under the command of 1Lt. George Febiger, 33rd Infantry, to attack the Filipinos at barrio Cosocos, Nagbukel town, Ilocos Sur, about 22 kilometers away.  

American soldiers find the bodies of 3 dead comrades lying by the roadside.  Photo was taken in 1900, location not specified.

The last 3 kilometers of the road is through a canyon with precipitous walls. Within 300 meters of barrio Cosocos, the point man discovered and opened fire on the Filipinos, estimated to number 400 and commanded by Juan Villamor. They were in position on both sides of the canyon and entrenched in front. After half an hour's engagement, seeing the Filipinos had the advantage in numbers and position, the precipitous sides of the canyon preventing a flanking movement, Lieutenant Febiger ordered  a retreat. The Americans were compelled to fight their way out of the canyon, Lieutenant Febiger taking the advance and Lieutenant Heidt the rearguard.

SAME scene as in preceding photo. Original caption:  "'Tis sad to leave them but they died bravely in the front ranks of the battle, P.I.".

Within 800 meters outside the mouth of the canyon, Lieutenant Febiger was killed; an attempt was made to carry his body along, but owing to the aggressiveness of the Filipinos his body had to be left on the field.

As the firing was at close range for most of the time, the Americans estimated Filipino losses in killed and wounded at over 100. [Maj. Gen. Adnan R. Chaffee reported that 50 Filipinos were killed and 100 wounded.]

Total American losses were 5 killed, 14 wounded and 8 captured (released the following day by Juan Villamor).  The Americans also lost 9 rifles, 1 carbine and 24 horses.

Feb. 2, 1901: General Martin Delgado surrenders

Feb. 2, 1901: General Martin Delgado formally surrenders to Brig. Gen. Robert P. Hughes with 30 officers and 140 men in Jaro, Iloilo

An American historian wrote, "As a result of this surrender, 41,000 inhabitants of the Province of Iloilo took the oath of allegiance."

March 8, 1901: Massacre at Lonoy, Bohol

Lonoy was a hilly barrio of Jagna town, Bohol Island. It was about 10 kilometers from thepoblacion.

There were two Filipino guerilla encampments on Mt. Verde in Barrio Lonoy. Miguel Valmoria'scampsite was in the upper part of Lonoy, while Gregorio "Goyo" Caseñas' was in the lower part of the village.

On March 5, 1901 Valmoria received a communication from the general headquarters of Bohol guerilla leader, Pedro Samson, that the Americans had started moving towards his (Valmoria's) camp.

Valmoria warned Caseñas that his camp (Caseñas') will be first to be attacked. Believing that the American troops will pass through Lonoy via a narrow path, Caseñas and his men dug trenches and foxholes on both sides of the path, covered and camouflaged. Waiting in the trenches and foxholes were 413 guerillas, nearly all armed only with daggers, bolos and spears.

Unknown to them, the Americans had learned of the ambush plan from a pro-American native, Francisco Salas, who led the Americans to the rear of the Filipino defenses.

On March 8, 1901, the Americans struck from behind, catching the would-be ambushers totally offguard; they shot and bayoneted the guerillas to death in their trenches; the Americans had received orders not to take prisoners and any Filipinos attempting to surrender were gunned down

When the smoke cleared, 406 of the Bohol natives lay dead on the ground, including Caseñas, and only 7 survived.

The Americans suffered 3 killed and 10 wounded.

March 10, 1901: General Mariano Riego de Dios surrenders

On March 10, 1901, General Mariano Riego de Dios surrendered to Col. Walter S. Schuyler (RIGHT) of the 46th Regular Infantry in Naik,Cavite. He brought with him 5 officers, 57 enlisted men and 62 firearms.

Riego de Dios was born on Sept. 12, 1875 in Maragondon, Cavite. He became a member of the Katipunan on July 12, 1896. He was among the first Caviteños to join the revolutionary society. In October  1896, he was among the Katipuneros who attacked the Spanish garrison in Lian, Batangas. He was promoted to the rank of Brigadier General after the triumphant defense of Noveleta, Cavite in 1896.

He was  member of the council of war that tried and convicted the Bonifacio brothers (Andres and Procorpio) of sedition and treason against the  revolutionary government of Emilio Aguinaldo. The brothers were sentenced to death but Riego de Dios believed the sentence was harsh and abstained from signing the death verdict.

He died on Feb. 17, 1935. Camp General Mariano Riego de Dios in Tanza, Cavite was named in his honor.

March 15, 1901: General Mariano Trias surrenders

General Mariano Trias was born on Oct. 12, 1868 in San Francisco de Malabon (now General Trias), Cavite province. He went to Manila and enrolled at the Colegio de San Juan de Letran for his Bachelor of Arts, then to the Universidad de Santo Tomas for his course in Medicine, which he was unable to finish as he returned home to help his parents manage the farm holdings.

He joined the Katipunan before the revolution broke out on Aug. 30, 1896 and became an active propagandist of the society against the ruling Spaniards in the towns of  Silang and Kawit.

On Nov. 1, 1897, the Biak-na-Bato Republic was established. Emilio Aguinaldo was president and Trías was vice president.

On Jan. 23, 1899, with the establishment of the Philippine republic, he was appointed as Secretary of Finance. He later held the post of Secretary of War. After Filipino forces were practically dispersed in Central Luzon by the US army, he was named commanding general of Southern Luzon. He directed guerrilla offensive moves in Cavite province.

He figured in a series of furious skirmishes with the troops of Brig. Gen. Lloyd Wheaton in January 1900 when he defended Cavite until his men were finally dispersed.

General Trías set free all the Spanish prisoners under his command in May 1900.

On March 15, 1901, he surrendered to Colonel (later Major General) Frank Dwight Baldwin (RIGHT, as Major General)  at  San Francisco de Malabon, accompanied by Severino de las Alas, former Secretary of the Interior, Ladislao Diwa, ex-governor of Cavite, 9 army officers and 199 enlisted men.

Brig. Gen. Arthur C. MacArthur, Jr., viewed this as "a most auspicious event, indicating the final stage of armed insurrection. The prestige of Trias in southern Luzon was equal to that of Aguinaldo." 

With the establishment of the civil government by the Americans, Civil Governor William Howard  Taft  appointed him the first Civil Governor of  Cavite on June 11, 1901 and he served until 1905.

A street in Cavite, photo taken in January 1904

In late January 1905, Julian Montalan, one of Macario Sakay's generals, raided San Francisco de Malabon. The guerillas overcame the constabulary force and captured their weapons. In departing, they kidnapped the wife and two small children of Governor Trias.This action was taken in response to Trias's collaborationist policies and his arrest of those suspected of aiding the guerillas. Trias was the actual target but he managed to escape by jumping through a window and submerging himself in a canal, which flowed in the rear of his premises. His wife was reportedly abused and one of her ribs broken by the butt of a gun. The family was recovered shortly thereafter by the Constabulary.

Trias organized the first chapter of the Nacionalista Party in Cavite. He was a member of the honorary board of Filipino commissioners to the Louisiana Purchase Exposition in 1904. He was acting governor of Cavite when he died of appendicitis at the Philippine General Hospital on Feb. 22, 1914.

Balangiga Massacre, September 28, 1901

Some soldiers of Company C,  9th U.S. Infantry ("Manchus") Regiment, in Balangiga in August 1901. Valeriano Abanador, the native chief of police who would lead the attack on the Balangiga garrison seven weeks later, is standing with arms folded across his chest (sixth from right).

On Aug 11, 1901, Company C, 9th US Infantry Regiment, arrived in Balangiga on the southern coast of Samar island, to close its port and prevent supplies reaching Filipino guerillas in the interior.

A glamour unit, Company C was assigned provost duty and guarded the captured President Emilio Aguinaldo upon their return to the Philippines on June 5, 1901, after fighting Boxer rebels and helping capture Peking in China.

They also performed as honor guard during the historic July 4, 1901 inauguration of the American civil government in the Philippines and the installation as first civil governor of William Howard Taft, later president of the U.S.

Soldiers of the 9th US Infantry "Manchus" Regiment enjoying a cockfight, somewhere in the Philippines.  Thirteen companies arrived in Manila on April 23 and 27, 1899. The regiment was temporarily deployed to China during the Boxer rebellion and arrived   there on July 6, 1900. Three members were awarded the Medal of Honor for heroism at Tientsin on July 13, 1900, including Pvt. Robert H. Von Schlick of Company C, who was killed in action. Grateful Chinese officials bestowed on the regiment the nickname “Manchu”. Eleven companies returned to Manila on June 2, 1901, and the remaining  two on June 5, 1901. They left the Philippines in batches on June 12 and 20, 1902.

Filipino historian, Prof. Rolando O. Borrinaga, tells the story of the massacre in an article entitled "Vintage View: The Balangiga Incident and Its Aftermath":

"The first month of Company C’s presence in Balangiga was marked by extensive fraternization between the Americans and the local residents. The friendly activities included tuba (native wine) drinking among the soldiers and native males, baseball games and arnis (stick fighting) demonstrations in the town plaza, and even a romantic link between an American sergeant,  Frank Betron, and a native woman church leader, Casiana “Geronima” Nacionales.

"Tensions rose when on September 22, at a tuba store, two drunken American soldiers tried to molest the girl tending the store. The girl was rescued by her two brothers, who mauled the soldiers. In retaliation, the Company Commander, Capt. Thomas W. Connell,  West Point class of 1894, rounded up 143 male residents for forced labor to clean up the town in preparation for an official visit by his superior officers. They were detained overnight without food under two conical Sibley tents in the town plaza, each of which could only accommodate 16 persons; 78 of the detainees remained the next morning, after 65 others were released due to age and physical infirmity. Finally, Connell ordered the confiscation from their houses of all sharp bolos, and the confiscation and destruction of stored rice. Feeling aggrieved, the townspeople plotted to attack the U.S. Army garrison.

"The mastermind was Valeriano Abanador (LEFT, IN OLD AGE), a Letran dropout and the local chief of police; he was assisted by five locals and two guerilla officers under the command of Brig. Gen. Vicente Lukban: Capt. Eugenio Daza and Sgt. Pedro Duran, Sr.  The lone woman plotter was Casiana “Geronima” Nacionales. Lukban played no role in the planning of the attack; he only learned about it a week later. About  500 men in seven attack units would take part. They represented virtually all families of Balangiga, whose outlying villages then included the present towns of Lawaan and Giporlos, and of Quinapundan, a town served by the priest in Balangiga.

"On September 27, Friday, the natives sought divine help and intervention for the success of their plot through an afternoon procession and marathon evening novena prayers to their protector saints inside the church. They also ensured the safety of the women and children by having them leave the town after midnight, hours before the attack. Pvt. Adolph Gamlin observed women and children evacuating the town and reported it, but he was ignored.

"To mask the disappearance of the women from the dawn service inside the church, 34 attackers from Barrio Lawaan cross-dressed as women worshippers.

"At 6:45 a.m., on Saturday, September 28, Abanador grabbed Pvt.  Adolph Gamlin's rifle from behind and hit him unconscious with its butt.  Abanador turned the rifle at the men in the sergeant’s mess tent, wounding one. He then waved a rattan cane above his head, and yelled: “Atake, mga Balangigan-on! (Attack, men of Balangiga!). A bell in the church tower was rung seconds later, to announce that the attack had begun.

"The guards outside the convent and municipal hall were killed. The Filipinos apparently sealed in the Sibley tents at the front of the municipal hall, having had weapons smuggled to them in water carriers, broke free and entered the municipal hall and made their way to the second floor. The men in the church broke into the convent through a connecting corridor and killed the officers who were billeted there. The mess tent and the two barracks were attacked. Most of the Americans were hacked to death before they could grab their firearms. The few who escaped the main attack fought with kitchen utensils, steak knives, and chairs.

"The convent was successfully occupied and so, initially, was the municipal hall, but the mess tent and barracks attack suffered a fatal flaw - about one hundred men were split into three groups, one of each target but too few attackers had been assigned to ensure success. A number of Co. C. personnel escaped from the mess tent and the barracks and were able to retake the municipal hall, arm themselves and fight back. Adolph Gamlin recovered consciousness, found a rifle and caused considerable casualties among the Filipinos. [Gamlin died at age 92 in the U.S. in 1969].

"Faced with immensely superior firepower and a rapidly degrading attack, Abanador ordered a retreat. But with insufficient numbers and fear that the rebels would re-group and attack again, the surviving Americans, led by Sgt.  Frank Betron, escaped by baroto(native canoes with outriggers, navigated by using wooden paddles) to Basey, Samar, about 20 miles away. The townspeople returned to bury their dead, then abandoned the town."

Capt. Edwin V. Bookmiller, West Point Class 1889 and commander of Company G of the 9th US Infantry at Basey, commandeered a civilian coastal steamer from Tacloban, the SS Pittsburg, and with his men steamed to Balangiga. The town was deserted. The dead of Company C lay where they fell, many bearing horrible hack wounds. Bookmiller and his men burned the town to the ground.

Of the original 74 man contingent, 48 died and 26 survived, 22 of them severely wounded. The dead included all of  Company C's commissioned officers: Capt. Thomas W. Connell (RIGHT), 1st Lt. Edward A. Bumpus, and Maj. Richard S. Griswold (the Company surgeon). The guerillas also took 100 rifles with 25,000 rounds of ammunition; 28 Filipinos died and 22 were wounded.

The massacre shocked the U.S. public; many newspaper editors noted that it was the worst disaster suffered by the U.S. Army since Custer's last stand at Little Big Horn. An infuriated Maj. Gen. Adna R. Chaffee, military governor for the “unpacified” areas of the Philippines, assured the press that "the situation calls for shot, shells and bayonets as the natives are not to be trusted." He advised newspaper correspondent Joseph Ohl, "If you should hear of a few Filipinos more or less being put away don't grow too sentimental over it."

Chaffee informed his officers that it was his intention "to give the Filipinos 'bayonet rule' for years to come." President Theodore Roosevelt ordered Chaffee to adopt "in no unmistakable terms," the "most stern measures to pacify Samar." 

Adna Romanza Chaffee (LEFT, in 1898) was born in Ohio in 1842. A veteran of the Civil war and countless Indian campaigns, he served throughout the Spanish-American War, and commanded American troops in the capture of Peking, China, during the Boxer rebellion. He replaced  Brig. Gen. Arthur C. MacArthur, Jr., as military governor  of the “unpacified” areas of the Philippines on July 4, 1901. He appointed Brigadier Generals James Franklin Bell to Batangas and Jacob Smith to Samar, with orders to do whatever was necessary to destroy the opposition--he wanted an Indian-style campaign. Chaffee’s orders were largely responsible for the atrocities that marked the later stages of the war. When the war ended in 1902, Chaffee returned to the States, where he served as lieutenant general and Chief of Staff for the U.S. Army from 1904-1906. He retired in 1906 and died in 1914.

St. Anthony Church: the present structure dates from 1927. The original church was burned down by the Americans on September 29, 1901

General Jake "Howling" Smith and his staff inspecting the ruins of Balangiga in October 1901, a few weeks after the retaliation by Captain Bookmiller and his troops.

Maj. Gen. Adna R. Chaffee (left) and Brig. Gen. Jacob Smith in Tacloban, Leyte in 1902

Colors of the 9th Infantry Regiment, Calbayog, Samar. These same colors entered Santiago (Cuba), Tarlac (Philippines), and Peking (China).

Survivors of Balangiga Massacre in April 1902 photo taken in Calbayog, Samar

Source:  L. Mervin Maus's book, An Army Officer On Leave In Japan, published in 1911.

This 1895 Balangiga bell ---the smallest of the three Balangiga church bells---was turned over to the headquarters of the 9th U.S. Infantry Regiment in Calbayog, Samar, around April 1902. This relic is on permanent display at the museum of the 9th U.S. Infantry, stationed in Camp Hovey, Tongduchon, South Korea. It is now considered by most Filipino historians as the one that was rung during the Balangiga attack.

The two bigger Balangiga bells:  These were brought to the U.S. by returning 11th Infantry soldiers to their home station at the former Fort D.A. Russell, now the F.E. Warren Air Force Base, in Cheyenne, Wyoming. Both are displayed at the Balangiga Memorial in its Trophy Park.

Brig. Gen. Jacob H. Smith's infamous order "KILL EVERYONE OVER TEN" was the caption in the New York Journal cartoon on May 5, 1902. The Old Glory draped an American shield on which a vulture replaced the bald eagle. The bottom caption exclaimed, "Criminals Because They Were Born Ten Years Before We Took the Philippines." The Philippine occupation was the first war, historian Gail Buckley has pointed out, in which “American officers and troops were officially charged with what we would now call war crimes.” In 44 military trials, all of which ended in convictions, including that of General Jacob Smith, “sentences, almost invariably, were light.” The Baltimore American had to admit the U.S. occupation “aped” Spain's cruelty and committed crimes “we went to war to banish.”

The U.S. Army's retaliation measures included actions that resulted in the courts-martial of two  field commanders, . Brig. Gen. Jacob "Howling Jake" Smith (LEFT, in Tagbilaran in 1901) and Marine Maj. Littleton Waller.

After the massacre at Balangiga, General Smith issued his infamous Circular No. 6, and ordered his command thus: "I want no prisoners" and "I wish you to kill and burn; and the more you burn and kill, the better it will please me." Then he tasked his men to reduce Samar into a "howling wilderness," to kill anyone 10 years old and above capable of bearing arms.

He stressed that, "Every native will henceforth be treated as an enemy until he has conclusively shown that he is a friend." His policy would be "to wage war in the sharpest and most decisive manner," and that "a course would be pursued that would create a burning desire for peace."  [On Dec. 29, 1890, as a cavalryman, Smith was present at Wounded Knee, South Dakota, an incident ---also referred to as a massacre---that left about 300 Sioux men, women and children, and 29 Army soldiers dead.]

An American river expedition in Samar

In Samar, he gave his subordinates carte blanche authority in the application of Abraham Lincoln’s 1863 General Order 100. This order, in brief, authorized the shooting on sight of all persons not in uniform acting as soldiers and those committing, or seeking to commit, sabotage.

The exact number of civilians massacred by US troops will never be known, but exhaustive research made by  a sympathetic British writer in the 1990s put the figure at about 2,500; Filipino historians believe it was around 50,000.

General Smith and Major Waller (RIGHT) underwent separate courts-martial for their roles in the suppressive campaign of Nov 1901- Jan 1902. Although he received the "Kill all over ten" order from Gen. Smith, Waller countermanded it and told his men not to obey it.

However, he was specifically tried for murder in the summary execution of 11 Filipino porters. After a long march,  Marine Lt. A.S. Wlliams accused the porters of mutinuous behavior, hiding food and supplies and keeping themselves nourished from the jungle while the Marines starved. Waller ordered the execution of the porters. Ten were shot in groups of three, while one was gunned down in the water attempting to escape.  The bodies were left in the square of Lanang (now Llorente), as an example, until one evening, under cover of darkness, some townspeople carried them off for a Christian burial.

An American expedition enters the Calbiga River, Samar

USS Vicksburg sailors led by Lt. ((later Rear Admiral) Henry V. Butler burning a village church in Samar, October 1901.

In an eleven-day span, Major Waller also reported that his men burned 255 dwellings, slaughtered 13 carabaos and killed 39 people. Other officers reported similar activity.

US Marines in action in the Philippines; at left, a Marine appears to have been hit. Photo was probably taken in Samar island, where the Marines battled extensively with General Vicente Lukban's guerillas in 1901-1902.  During the Philippine-American War, 50 US Marines were killed in combat while 300 died from other causes, mainly disease. The "Philippine Insurrection" was the basis of the US Marine Corps' Small Wars Manual, which remains its bible to this day.

Smith commanded the Sixth Separate Brigade, which included a battalion of 315 Marines under Waller.  Waller's court martial acquitted him but Smith's found him guilty, for which he was admonished and retired from the service. Gen. Smith was born in 1840 and died in San Diego, California on March 1, 1918.

USS Vicksburg sailors led by Lt. ((later Rear Admiral) Henry V. Butler burning a village in Samar, October 1901.

Outcry in America over the brutal nature of the Samar campaign cost Waller his chance at the Commandancy of the US Marine Corps. Liberal newspapers took to addressing him as "The Butcher Of Samar".

Waller was born in York County, Virginia on Sept. 26, 1856. He was appointed as a second lieutenant of Marines on June 24, 1880. He rose to Major General, retired in June 1920 and died on July 13, 1926.  He is buried in Arlington National Cemetery. In 1942, the destroyer USS Waller was named in his honor.

In April 1902, Abanador accepted the general amnesty offered by the Americans. He died sometime in the 1950's.

Balangiga Plaza in front of the municipal hall with a monument to Valeriano Abanador. An annual event, “Balangiga Encounter Day”, was made possible by the passage into law on February 10, 1989 of Republic Act. No 6692, “An Act Declaring September Twenty-Eight as Balangiga Encounter Day and a Special Non-Working Holiday in the Province of Eastern Samar.” The original bill was filed by Eastern Samar Rep. Jose Tan Ramirez.

Dec. 27, 1901: Atrocity in Panay Island

In the April 18, 1902 issue of the New York World,Richard Thomas O'Brien, formerly a corporal in Company M, 26th U.S. Volunteer Infantry Regiment,  based in Miag-ao, Iloilo Province, Panay Island, described how his birthday went on Dec. 27, 1901 at Barrio Lanog: [LEFT, Miag-ao Church, late 1890's]

"It was on the 27th day of December, the anniversary of my birth, and I shall never forget the scenes I witnessed on that day. As we approached the town the word passed along the line that there would be no prisoners taken. It meant that we were to shoot every living thing in sight—man, woman, and child. The first shot was fired by the then first sergeant of our company. His target was a mere boy, who was coming down the mountain path into the town astride of a caribou. The boy was not struck by the bullet, but that was not the sergeant's fault. The little Filipino boy slid from the back of his caribou and fled in terror up the mountain side. Half a dozen shots were fired after him. The shooting now had attracted the villagers, who came out of their homes in alarm, wondering what it all meant. They offered no offense, did not display a weapon, made no hostile movement whatsoever, but they were ruthlessly shot down in cold blood—men, women, and children. The poor natives huddled together or fled in terror. Many were pursued and killed on the spot.

"Two old men, bearing between them a white flag and clasping hands like two brothers, approached the lines. Their hair was white. They fairly tottered, they were so feeble under the weight of years. To my horror and that of the other men in the command, the order was given to fire, and the two old men were shot down in their tracks. We entered the village. A man who had been on a sick-bed appeared at the doorway of his home. He received a bullet in the abdomen and fell dead in the doorway. Dum-dum bullets were used in that massacre, but we were not told the name of the bullets. We didn't have to be told. We knew what they were.

"In another part of the village a mother with a babe at her breast and two young children at her side pleaded for mercy. She feared to leave her home, which had just been fired—accidentally, I believe. She faced the flames with her children, and not a hand was raised to save her or the little ones. They perished miserably. It was sure death if she left the house—it was sure death if she remained. She feared the American soldiers, however, worse than the devouring flames."

Company M was commanded by Capt. Fred McDonald.

The Last Holdouts: General Vicente Lukban falls, Feb. 18, 1902

General Vicente Lukban (4th from Left, right hand on pistol holster), with staff officers on Samar Island.

General Vicente Lukban commanded Filipino guerilla forces on Samar and Leyte islands in the eastern Visayas, central Philippines.

General Vicente Lukban (in LEFT PHOTO, seated at center) as a prisoner of war, February 1902.   Photos published in the Detroit Free Press-Illustrated Supplement, issue of May 17, 1903.

On Feb. 18, 1902, he was captured by a scouting party composed of Americans and Filipinos commanded by 1Lt. Alphonse Strebler of Company 39, Visayas, Philippine Scouts. Maj. Gen. Adna R. Chaffee, military governor for the “unpacified” areas of the Philippines, ordered that Lukban be treated as a prisoner of war of officer's rank.

General Vicente Lukban is flanked by his captor, 1Lt. Alphonse Strebler (LEFT), and 1Lt. Ray Hoover (RIGHT), officer-in-charge of the guard over him, February 1902. He was imprisoned in Talim Island in Laguna de Bay until July 15, 1902 after he took an oath of allegiance to the United States.

Four days later, on Feb. 22, 1902, at Cagbayan, Samar, 2Lt. Frank Pratt of the 1st U.S. Infantry Regiment, encountered and captured William C. Denton (LEFT, in February 1902), a deserter from the ill-fated Company C, 9th U.S. Infantry Regiment, who had joined Lukban's guerilla force. Eleven Filipinos in Denton's group were killed. [Denton deserted to the Filipinos shortly before the Balangiga massacre; Lukban described him as a "noble son of Washington, who had joined the Filipino cause as a lover of liberty."].

[Two weeks earlier, on Feb. 8, 1902, another white American deserter, John Winfrey, from the 43rd U.S. Infantry Regiment, was killed along with 8 Filipino guerillas in a clash with 1Lt. Allen Walker of Company 45, Visayas, Philippine Scouts. The encounter took place in the vicinity of Loguilocon, Samar. On his body was found a commission as second lieutenant from Gen. Vicente Lukban.]

On Feb. 27, 1902, the New York Times reported:

"The officials of  the War Department regard the capture of Lucban as the most important military event since Aguinaldo's capture. He was run down on the Island of Samar. The place of his confinement is a tiny island in a bay on the north coast of Samar. Lucban is one of the most energetic and ferocious of rebels. He is a half-breed, a mixture of Chinese and Filipino stock,  and has been an irreconcilable from the first. He had various fastnesses in the mountains of Samar, from which he would descend upon the coast towns, and his reign of terror was so complete that the entire population of the island paid tribute to him as the price of freedom from attack."

The Americans tagged Lukban as the mastermind of the infamous "Balangiga Massacre"  on Sept. 28, 1901, in which 48 troopers of Company C, 9th U.S. Infantry Regiment, were killed. In fact, he played no part in the planning of the attack; he only learned about it a week later, on Oct. 6, 1901.

Lukban was born on Feb. 11, 1860 at Labo, Camarines Norte Province. After his elementary education at the Escuela Pia Publica in his hometown, he proceeded to Manila and completed his secondary schooling at the Ateneo Municipal de Manila. He took up Law at the Colegio de San Juan de Letran, and then worked in the Court of First Instance in Quiapo, Manila, before becoming Justice of the Peace in Labo.

In 1894, he was inducted into the Masonic Lodge adopting the name "Luz del Oriente" (Light of the Orient) and co-founded Bicol Lodge in Libmanan, Camarines Sur with Juan Miguel. He joined the secret revolutionary society Katipunan that same year.

In 1896, Lukban resigned from government service and engaged in business and agriculture. He founded the agricultural society La Cooperativa Popular.

On Sept. 29, 1896 Lukban was in Manila attending a meeting of the agricultural society when Spanish authorities arrested him for his involvement with the Katipunan. He was  kept at the Carcel de Bilibid and despite torture did not expose his fellow revolutionaries. Torture and imprisonment in a flooded cell left him with a permanent limp. He was released on May 17, 1897 after Governor-General Fernando Primo de Rivera granted amnesty to political prisoners. He immediately joined General Emilio Aguinaldo’s forces. 

After the Pact of Biak na Bato was forged on Dec. 14, 1897,  he went into exile with Aguinaldo in Hongkong and became part of the revolutionary junta (LEFT, photo taken in Hong Kong).

In May 1898, Lukban returned to the Philippines and resumed his involvement with the revolutionists; he was given the rank of a Colonel. On Oct. 29, 1898, General Aguinaldo appointed him Comandante Militar of the Bicol region. On December 21 of the same year, he was promoted General of Samar and Leyte.

When the Filipino-American War broke out on Feb. 4, 1899, Lukban established his arsenal in the mountains of Catbalogan and carried out guerrilla warfare.

Brig. Gen. Arthur C. MacArthur, Jr.,  offered $5,000 (read as "Pesos") for Lukban’s head. He was offered the position of governor of Samar under the American regime, with autonomy, if he would surrender, but he refused to accept the offer.

After his capture, the Americans asked Lukban to use his influence and convince the rest of his command to surrender. He demurred at first, but subsequently changed his mind and wrote several letters, which were sent out and carried by pro-American Filipinos.

April 26, 1902:  Gen. Claro Guevarra and his men on board the U.S. Navy collier Nanshan, while being transported from the mouth of the Gandara River to Catbalogan, Samar, where they formally surrendered the following day.

Col. Claro Guevarra  succeeded Lukban and forbade his men to give attention to the latter's letters. He assumed the rank of General and prepared to continue the resistance. The Americans sent peace envoys to negotiate with Guevarra. On April 26, 1902, he relented and the following day surrendered with 744 men to Brig. Gen. Frederick Dent Grant, commander of the Sixth US Infantry Brigade, at Catbalogan, Samar.

April 26, 1902:  The first lighter load of guerillas under General Guevarra approaching the wharf at 4 pm; a welcome arch had been erected under which they would pass.

April 26, 1902:  Gen. Claro Guevarra (LEFT) and his chief of staff, Col. Francisco Rafael, are photographed on arrival at Catbalogan, Samar.

April 26, 1902: Gen. Claro Guevarra (CENTRAL FIGURE, tallest man in front row) and his officers. His chief of staff, Col. Francisco Rafael, stands to his right. Photo taken at Catbalogan, Samar.

April 27, 1902:  Gen. Claro Guevarra and Brig. Gen. Frederick Dent Grant shake hands for the camera at Catbalogan, Samar.   Grant was the oldest son of Civil War general and United States President Ulysses S. Grant; he graduated from West Point in 1871.

April 27, 1902:  Gen. Guevarra and his men formally surrendering at the town plaza of Catbalogan, Samar.   Photo, taken at about 3:30 P.M., was published in the Detroit Free Press-Illustrated Supplement, issue of May 17, 1903.

Guevarra's entourage consisted of 65 officers, 236 riflemen and 443 boleros.  A few days later, 5 more riflemen and 53 boleros also surrendered at Catbalogan.  Arms and ammunition surrendered:  115 Krag rifles, 1 Krag carbine, 79 Remington rifles, 31 Mauser rifles, 14 miscellaneous guns; total, 240. Seven thousand five hundred rounds Krag cartridges, 500 miscellaneous; total, 8,000.

On May 11, 1902, 18 guerillas with 2 Remington rifles, 1 shotgun and 18 rounds of ammunition surrendered at Catbalogan. Two days later, Lt. Ignacio Alar, with 3 officers, 35 men, 12 Krag rifles, 1 Springfield rifle, 3 shotguns and 1,000 rounds of ammunition gave up at Tacloban. This last surrender accounted for every guerilla officer known then to the Americans in Samar, and for every rifle except two.

On June 17, 1902, provincial civil government was established on Samar Island  by an act of the Philippine Commission.

In 1904, Lukban was arrested with two of his brothers, Justo and Cayetano, on charges of sedition filed against them by the Manila Secret Police. The Supreme Court, however, acquitted them for lack of evidence.

In 1912, Lukban ran for Governor in Tayabas and although not a native of the place, won handily (His mother, though, was born in Lucban, Tayabas). He was reelected for another term in 1916 but died on November 16 of the same year.

Gen. Miguel Malvar surrenders, April 16, 1902

Miguel Malvar and his wife Paula Maloles (seated, left) and mother-in-law, late 1880's.

General Miguel Malvar (LEFT, in 1902) was born on Sept 27, 1865 in Santo Tomas, Batangas Province, to a wealthy sugarcane and rice farming family. He was one of the generals exiled with Emilio Aguinaldo to Hongkong as a result of the Pact of Biyak-na-Bato forged on Dec. 14, 1897 between Spain and the Filipino rebels. He was appointed treasurer of the revolution's funds. When the truce collapsed, Malvar returned to the Philippines with 2,000 rifles and 200,000 rounds of ammunition. He liberated Tayabas Province from the Spaniards on June 15, 1898.

After Aguinaldo's capture by the Americans on March 23, 1901, Malvar assumed control of all the Filipino forces. He setup his own government of the Philippine Republic, with him as supreme head and Commander-in-Chief, and waged guerilla warfare against American-held towns in Batangas.

Excerpted from: Melvin L. Severy, Gillette's Social Redemption, Herbert B. Turner & Co., Boston, 1907, p.242.

Brig. Gen. James Franklin Bell,  in charge of military operations on Luzon Island, employed scorched earth tactics that took a heavy toll on Filipino guerrillas and civilians alike.

He told the New York Times on May 1, 1901, that:

"One-sixth of the natives of Luzon have either been killed or have died of the dengue fever in the last two years. The loss of life by killing alone has been great, but I think that not one man has been slain except where his death served the legitimate purposes of war. It has been necessary to adopt what other countries would probably be thought harsh measures, for the Filipino is tricky and crafty and has to be fought in his own way." 

Original caption:  "A capture of seventy insurgents at Quinka, Batangas Province."  Photo was actually taken in the town of Cuenca in 1901. The Americans belonged to Troop K, 1st US Cavalry Regiment.

Original caption:  "Another capture at Quinka".  Photo, taken in 1901 at Cuenca, Batangas Province, shows soldiers of Troop K, 1st US Cavalry Regiment and Filipino POWs.

Original caption:  "A capture of insurgents at Lagnas".  Photo was taken in 1901 at BarrioLagnas, Bauan, Batangas Province. The Americans belonged to Troop K, 1st US Cavalry Regiment. In 1969, Lagnas became a separate municipality and renamed "San Pascual".

Original caption:  "A group of natives in the interior from which we selected a fine bunch of insurgents."  The men were rounded up by Troop K, 1st US Cavalry Regiment. Photo was taken in 1901 at Bauan, Batangas Province.

Filipino guns captured by soldiers of Troop K, 1st US Cavalry Regiment. These were kept in the church convent at Bauan, Batangas Province. Photo was taken in 1901.

Original caption:  "After the fight of Nov. 12, 1901. Bauan. Soldiers of Troop K 1st Cav."  Photo was taken at Bauan, Batangas Province. Capt. John DL Hartman and 50 troopers outflanked Filipino guerillas who waited in ambush on the Bauan-Taal road, killing 25; 2 Americans were wounded. The cavalry was tipped off by collaborators.

Original caption:  "Gov'mt. issuing rice to poor people in Bauan during the concentration." Photo was taken in 1901 at Bauan, Batangas Province. The town was garrisoned by Troop K of the 1st US Cavalry Regiment.

General Bell ordered the entire population of the provinces of Batangas and Laguna to gather into small areas within the poblacion of their respective towns by Dec.  25, 1901.Barrio families had to bring clothes, food, and everything they could carry into the designated area. Everything left behind, houses, gardens, carts, poultry and animals, were burned by the U.S. Army.  People found outside the concentration camps were shot.

A reconcentrado (concentration) camp for civilians at Tanauan, Batangas Province.  General Bell insisted that he built these camps to "protect friendly natives from the insurgents, assure them an adequate food supply" while teaching them "proper sanitary standards." The commandant of one of the camps referred to them as the "suburbs of Hell."

Starvation and disease took the lives of thousands. Between January and April of 1902, there were 8,350 deaths out of 298,000. Some camps lost as many as 20% of the population. There was one camp that was two miles by one mile (3.2 by 1.6 km) in area. It was "home" to some 8,000 Filipinos. Men were rounded up for questioning, tortured and summarily executed.

A ROUNDUP OF FILIPINO CIVILIANS. Undated photo and location not specified. A corres- pondent to the Philadelphia Ledger  wrote, "Our soldiers...have taken prisoner people who held up their hands and peacefully surrendered, and an hour later, without an atom of evidence to show that they were even insurrectos, stood them on a bridge and shot them down one by one, to drop into the water below and float down as an example to those who found their bullet riddled corpses."

American soldiers hang two Filipinos. (LEFT) The prisoners are forced up on the scaffold at gunpoint; (RIGHT) The nooses are adjusted and the Filipinos' hands are tied behind their backs.  Undated photo, location not specified.

Reverend W. H. Walker received a letter from his son and showed it to the Boston Journal, which reported about it on May 5, 1902. The letter described how 1,300 prisoners were executed over a few weeks. A Filipino priest heard their confessions for several days and then he was  hanged in front of them. Twenty prisoners at a time were made to dig their mass graves and then were shot. The young Walker wrote, “To keep them prisoners would necessitate the placing of the soldiers on short rations if not starving them. There was nothing to do but kill them.”

Filipino POWs in Nasugbu, Batangas Province

When an American was "murdered" in Batangas,  Bell ordered his men to "by lot select a POW--preferably one from the village in which the assassination took place--and execute him."

He also rounded up the wealthy and influential residents of Batangas (ABOVE). They were packed like sardines in small rooms, measuring 15-by-30-by-6 feet, into which up to 50 of them were crammed for months. They were pressed into work gangs to burn their own homes, until they agreed to aid American forces.

Female prisoners in Batangas

Bell said, "It is an inevitable consequence of war that the innocent must generally suffer with the guilty".  He reasoned that since all natives were treacherous, it was impossible to recognize "the actively bad from only the passively so."

Some estimates of civilian deaths on Luzon are as high as 100,000. Many of Malvar's officers and men gave up and collaborated with the Americans. Malvar realized that continuing the war would harm the people more.

Filipino POWs in Batangas Province. A report in the Army and Navy Journal  told of 600 Filipinos penned in a building 70-by-20 feet, suffocating, starving, dying of dysentery and thirst in the brutal tropical sun.

On April 16, 1902, Malvar and his entire command surrendered to the Americans, who treated him honorably. General Bell reported that during the campaign against Malvar, US forces secured 3,561 guns and 625 revolvers, captured, or forced to surrender some eight or ten thousand "insurgents". 

After his surrender, Malvar lived a quiet and comfortable life. He graciously declined the offer for him to become governor of Batangas Province. On Oct. 13, 1911, he died of a liver ailment in Manila. He was 46. His remains were brought to Santo Tomas, Batangas and was buried with high military honors.  [LEFT, Malvar Monument in Santo Tomas].

James Franklin Bell was born on Jan. 9, 1856 in Shelby County, Kentucky. He graduated from West Point in 1878, finishing 38th in a class of 43. He was  commissioned as a second lieutenant in the 9th Cavalry Regiment, a black unit. While in Illinois in 1886-89, he read law and passed the Illinois bar. He participated in the Pine Ridge, South Dakota Indian campaign in 1891. 

After a few months in the Philippines, Bell was promoted from Captain to Brigadier General, outranking many officers previously his senior. He was awarded the Medal of Honor for his actions of Sept. 9, 1899 near Porac, Pampanga Province.

In 1903, General Bell assisted Secretary of War Elihu Root in developing the overall plan for the reorganization of the US Army’s educational system. He was then designated Commandant of the Infantry and Cavalry school, the Signal School, and the Staff Collegeat Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. As Commandant from 1903 to 1906, he implemented the reorganization plans and became known as the founder of the modern method of instruction in the US Army.

From April 1906 to April 1910 Bell served as Chief of Staff, US Army, with rank of Major General from June 1907 (LEFT).

E. Polk Johnson, author of "History of Kentucky and Kentuckians", published in 1912, wrote of Bell, "...his frank, open nature and sunny, warm-hearted, generous disposition have won to him a host of friends, both in the army and out of it. To such friends and to this numerous kindred and 'cousins' throughout Kentucky, his official title and trappings are of far less moment than his own loyal, lovable, big-hearted manhood, and with these, his own home people, he is even to this day simply but affectionately plain 'Frank Bell'". 

Bell died in New York City on Jan. 8, 1919 and was buried in Arlington National Cemetery. His wife, Sarah Buford Bell (1857-1943) is buried with him.

May 30, 1902: President Theodore Roosevelt's Memorial Day comments on American atrocities

May 30, 1902:   President Theodore Roosevelt addresses a vast Memorial Day crowd at Arlington Cemetery before assembled veterans and journalists.

In his "indignant" speech, Roosevelt defended the U. S. Army against charges of "cruelty" in the ongoing Philippine-American War by racializing the conflict as one being fought between the forces of "civilization" and "savagery." He dismissed the Filipinos as "Chinese half-breeds," and insisted "this is the most glorious war in our nation's history."

(LEFT), US soldiers and a native collaborator applying the "water cure" to a Filipino  "insurgent".  (RIGHT), Life Cartoon: European colonial powers mock the US.

In the same year, Albert Gardner, in Troop B of the 1st U.S. Cavalry, composed a would-be comic song dedicated to "water-cure" torture, sung to the tune of the Battle Hymn of the Republic:
Get the good old syringe boys and fill it to the brim
We’ve caught another nigger and we’ll operate on him
Let someone take the handle who can work it with a vim
Shouting the battle cry of freedom
Hurrah Hurrah We bring the Jubilee
Hurrah Hurrah The flag that makes him free
Shove in the nozzel deep and let him taste of liberty
Shouting the battle cry of freedom"

Original caption:  "Philippine Islands---A Harmless Method of Torture Alleged to Have Been Occasionally Used by Soldiers in the Philippines as one of the Necessary Accom- paniments of War."   The men belonged to the 35th U.S. Volunteer Infantry Regiment commanded by Col. Edward H. Plummer, West Point Class 1877. The regiment, which mainly operated in Bulacan Province, Luzon Island, arrived in the Philippines on Nov. 6, 1899 and departed on March 15, 1901.

President Roosevelt privately assured a friend the water cure was  "an old Filipino method of mild torture"  and claimed when Americans administered it  "nobody was seriously damaged."

The "treatment" consisted of spread-eagling a prisoner on his back, forcing his mouth open with a bamboo stick and pouring gallons of water down his throat. Helpless, the prisoner was pumped with water until his stomach was near the bursting point. Then he was questioned. If he refused to answer, an American soldier stood or kneeled on his belly, forcing the water out. One report by a U.S. soldier told how "a good heavy man" jumped on a prisoner’s belly "sending a gush of water from his mouth into the air as high as six feet."

US soldiers administering the "water cure" to a Filipino  "insurgent".

This cure was repeated until the prisoner talked or died. Roughly half the Filipinos given the cure did not survive. How many Filipinos were killed by torture is not known, but the extent of the practice is documented by a letter sent home by a soldier who bragged of inflicting the water cure on 160 Filipinos, 134 of whom died. A Harvard-educated officer, 1st Lt. Grover Flint, testified before the US Senate on the routine torture of Filipino combatants and civilians. He described the “water cure” as standard US Army torture.

July 4, 1902: President Theodore Roosevelt declares official end of Philippine "Insurrection"

July 4, 1902:  The 30th U.S. Infantry Regiment on parade in Manila for the Fourth of July U.S. Independence Day celebration

"Whereas, many of the inhabitants of the Philippine Archipelago were in insurrection against the authority and sovereignty of the Kingdom of Spain at diverse times from August, eighteen hundred and ninety-six, until the cession of the archipelago by that Kingdom to the United States of America, and since such cession many of the persons so engaged in insurrection have until recently resisted the authority and sovereignty of the United States; and

Whereas, the insurrection against the authority and sovereignty of the United States is now at an end, and peace has been established in all parts of the archipelago except in the country inhabited by the Moro tribes, to which this proclamation does not apply; and

Whereas, during the course of the insurrection against the Kingdom of Spain and against the Government of the United States, persons engaged therein, or those in sympathy with and abetting them, committed many acts in violation of the laws of civilized warfare, but it is believed that such acts were generally committed in ignorance of those laws, and under orders issued by the civil or insurrectionary leaders; and

Whereas, it is deemed to be wise and humane, in accordance with the beneficent purposes of the Government of the United States towards the Filipino people, and conducive to peace, order, and loyalty among them, that the doers of such acts who have not already suffered punishment shall not be held criminally responsible, but shall be relieved from punishment for participation in these insurrections , and for unlawful acts committed during the course thereof, by a general amnesty and pardon:

Now, therefore, be it known that I, Theodore Roosevelt, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the power and authority vested in me by the Constitution, do hereby proclaim and declare, without reservation or condition, except as hereinafter provided, a full and complete pardon and amnesty to all persons in the Philippine Archipelago who have participated in the insurrections aforesaid, or who have given aid and comfort to persons participating in said insurrections , for the offenses of treason or sedition and for all offenses political in their character committed in the course of such insurrections pursuant to orders issued by the civil or military insurrectionary authorities, or which grew out of internal political feuds or dissension between Filipinos and Spaniards or the Spanish authorities, or which resulted from internal political feuds or dissension among the Filipinos themselves, during either of said insurrections :

Provided, however, That the pardon and amnesty hereby granted shall not include such persons committing crimes since May first, nineteen hundred and two, in any province of the archipelago in which at the time civil government was established, nor shall it include such persons as have been heretofore finally convicted of the crimes of murder, rape, arson, or robbery by any military or civil tribunal organized under the authority of Spain, or of the United States of America, but special application may be made to the proper authority for pardon by any person belonging to the exempted classes, and such clemency as is consistent with humanity and justice will be liberally extended; and

Further provided, That this amnesty and pardon shall not affect the title or right of the Government of the United States, or that of the Philippine Islands, to any property or property rights heretofore used or appropriated by the military or civil authorities of the Government of the United States, or that of the Philippine Islands, organized under authority of the United States, by way of confiscation or otherwise;

Provided further, That every person who shall seek to avail himself of this proclamation shall take and subscribe the following oath before any authority in the Philippine Archipelago authorized to administer oaths, namely:

    'I, ________________ , solemnly swear (or affirm) that I recognize and accept the supreme authority of the United States of America in the Philippine Islands and will maintain true faith and allegiance thereto; that I impose upon myself this obligation voluntarily, without mental reservation or purpose of evasion. So help me God.'

Given under my hand at the City of Washington this fourth day of July in the year of our Lord one thousand nine hundred and two, and in the one hundred and twenty-seventh year of the Independence of the United States."

March 27, 1903: General Luciano San Miguel dies in battle

General Luciano San Miguel was one of only two generals of the army of the First Philippine Republic killed in action during the Philippine-American War (General Gregorio del Pilar was the other fatality). He was one of only two leading Filipino revolutionary leaders who did not accept American rule (the other was General Artemio Ricarte). And he was one of the few leading figures in all phases of the Philippine Revolution.

San Miguel ( RIGHT, photo from www.nhi.gov.ph) was born on Jan. 7, 1875 in Noveleta, Cavite Province. He joined the Katipunan in 1896 and was a colonel when the war with the Americans broke out on Feb. 4, 1899. He rose to General and saw action in central and western Luzon. He did not surrender or take the oath of allegiance to the United States.

In September 1902, he revived the Katipunan and continued to fight the guerrilla war in Bulacan and Rizal provinces. The American authorities considered San Miguel as the most serious menace to the peace of the Philippines in the years 1902 and 1903.

On Oct. 1, 1902, at a meeting of guerilla leaders presided over by General Benito Santa Ana,  San Miguel was elected Supreme Commander of all existing resistance forces, following his great activity in the wilder parts of the provinces of Bulacan and Rizal. On several occasions he had surprised and destroyed detachments of the Philippine Constabulary, and his force had grown to a well-disciplined, well-armed army.

The other resistance leaders present during the meeting were:  Laureano Abelino, Severo Alcantara, Anatalio Austria, Miguel Capistrano, Perfecto Dizon, Gregorio Esteban, Ismael Francisco, Carlos Gabriel, Francisco Rivera, Apolonio Samson, Marcelo Santa Ana and Julian Santos.

Philippine Constabulary troopers, circa 1901-1902

In Bulacan, in January 1903, San Miguel attacked the command of Capt. William W. Warren, and later, in February 1903, the company of Lt. G.R. Twilley. On both occasions, the Constabulary had been soundly whipped. 

The month of February 1903 found every available Constabulary soldier in the Bulacan-Rizal area in the field in an attempt to locate San Miguel and destroy his force. Flying columns of Scouts and Constabulary, each one company strong, were dispatched with orders to contact his army and co-operate in massed attack upon his positions.

Photo of Philippine Scouts, circa 1903

On March 27, 1903, at Corral-na-Bato, Marikina, Rizal Province, General San Miguel's camp was surrounded and attacked by the First and Fourth Companies of the Philippine Scouts led by First Lieutenants Boss Reese and Frank Nickerson; San Miguel and 34 of his men were killed while the Scouts suffered 3 dead. 

General San Miguel was respected by the army and Constabulary officers who pursued him. In 1938, Capt. Cary Crockett (LEFT) --who clashed with General San Miguel in Boso-Boso in February 1903--spoke of him as a brave man and an efficient soldier.

Vic Hurley, the aurhor of  "Jungle Patrol: The Story of the Philippine Constabulary" (published 1938), wrote:

"With the passing of San Miguel, the final heartbeat of the Philippine Insurrection sounded. His death was followed by the surrender of many minor leaders, and never again was theUnited States to encounter resistance from any legitimate leader. San Miguel must be rated a sincere insurgent and not a bandit. The leaders who followed him were bandits."

September 25, 1903: General Simeon A. Ola surrenders in Albay

Simeon Ola, a native of Guinobatan, Albay Province, was the last Filipino general to surrender to the Americans, although the latter classified him as a bandit leader, as they did other Filipinos who continued resisting after the US declared the Filipino-American war officially over on July 4, 1902.

On Sept. 22, 1898, less than 5 months before the outbreak of the Fil-Am war on Feb. 4, 1899, the provincial revolutionary government of Albay was formed, with Anaceto Solano as provincial president. Maj. Gen. Vito Belarmino, appointed military commander, reorganized the Filipino army in the province, with Ola serving as a Major. 

The Americans set up a civil government in Albay on April 22, 1901, and Belarmino surrendered on July 4 of the same year. But Ola, with a thousand men, continued to defy American authority. He launched guerrilla raids on towns garrisoned by combined Philippine Constabulary, Philippine Scouts, and elements of the US Army.

Colorized photo was taken in the early 1900s.

Ola's attacks in Albay caused an estimated $6,000,000 losses for the US-controlled hemp industry. Col. Harry H. Bandholtz, CO of the Philippine Constabulary in the Bicol region,  employed  12 companies of Scout soldiers and an equal number of Constabulary against Ola.

Ola finally surrendered on Sept. 25, 1903 along with about 1,500 men.  He  showed  Bandholtz an electric light bulb; it served as his personal "anting-anting" (amulet). He explained its virtues as follows: "It has always been a sure warning of the presence of American troops near by. When I grasp it in my hand and the wires tremble, I know that the Americans are very near." Bandholtz jokingly offered the suggestion that the hand trembled to shake the wires because the Americans were near.

Some of Ola's men were tried under the vagrancy law and given road-work sentences of 6 months to 2 years. About 60 were sentenced to Bilibid Prison in Manila for sedition, and 12  were hanged. When Ola turned state's evidence he was given a 30-year suspended sentence.

Ola (RIGHT) became the first mayor of Guinobatan, serving for 2 consecutive terms.

Camp Simeon Ola (formerly Camp Ibalon), Philippine National Police Regional Office V headquarters  in Legaspi City, was named after the Bicolano General on June 24, 1991. Camp Ibalon was called Regan Barracks when it was set up by US army soldiers under Brig. Gen. William Kobbe on Jan.  23, 1900. The Philippine Constabulary, organized in 1901, later took over the camp.

May 20, 1904: Colonel Faustino Guillermo is hanged

June 10, 1903: Colonel Faustino Guillermo is captured by Philippine Constabulary troops commanded by a Captain Teong

Faustino Guillermo was born in 1860 in Sampaloc, Manila. As a Katipunero, he fought alongside Andres Bonifacio. He surrendered to the Americans at Malabon in 1900. Shortly after taking the oath of allegiance to the United States, he established himself at San Francisco del Monte, Morong Province (renamed "Rizal Province" in 1901) and began recruiting men to continue the resistance against American rule. Guillermo was arrested there in 1901 by the Filipino police of Sampaloc. After three months' imprisonment, he was freed by Lieutenant Lucien Sweet of the municipal secret police, who appointed him as a police informer.

The old church at San Francisco del Monte, circa late 1890's or early 1900's

Upon his release, Guillermo returned to San Francisco del Monte and resumed recruitment work for the resistance. He was re-arrested by the Philippine Constabulary (PC) and placed under the custody of Inspector Licerio Geronimo in San Mateo, Rizal  Province.(Geronimo commanded the Filipino troops that killed Maj. Gen. Henry W. Lawton at the Battle of San Mateo on Dec. 19, 1899; he surrendered to the Americans on March 30, 1901; he was among a handful of Filipinos admitted into the officer ranks of the colonial Philippine Constabulary).

Geronimo (RIGHT, image courtesy of Macky Hosalla) compelled Guillermo to act as a spy for him. Captain Keithley of the PC then ordered his release.

He went to the mountains and commenced to recruit men, inviting his friends and acquaintances to join him in fighting the Americans. They wandered about the woods, going from Rizal to Bulacan and vice versa, living upon food given them by the people of thebarrios.

In early 1902, he joined the forces of General Luciano San Miguel who gave him the rank of Lieutenant Colonel (promoted to Colonel in January 1903). They operated in the provinces of Rizal and Bulacan. Guillermo figured in at least 15 skirmishes with the Philippine Constabulary and Philippine Scouts.

He permitted spies to penetrate his camps. However, before the infiltrators got the chance to report to their American bosses, he unmasked and buried them up to their necks, their heads and faces exposed to the painful bites of  huge red ants (hamtik).

On July 15, 1902, Inspector Licerio Geronimo, who was scouting in the Diliman country with seven men (Diliman is now a part of Quezon City), was surprised in a house where he and his men were resting, by Faustino Guillermo and Apolonio Samson with about 25 men, and narrowly escaped capture, after having one of his men killed and another seriously wounded. Geronimo also lost 3 horses, with their trappings and saddles, his uniform, hat and shoes, and escaped in his undershirt and drawers.

In the evening, Guillermo made good use of Geronimo's PC outfit. He wore it when he entered the PC garrison of 16 men in San Jose, Bulacan; the unsuspecting garrison commander, a Sergeant Omano, obeyed Guillermo's order and formed the detachment into arms. At this juncture, Guillermo's men rushed in and took all the constables prisoners and secured their firearms. One of the constables defected to Guillermo's band.

Photo taken in 1904

On March 27, 1903, at Corral-na-Bato, Marikina, Rizal Province, Guillermo and General San Miguel were surrounded and attacked by the First and Fourth Companies of the Philippine Scouts led by First Lieutenants Boss Reese and Frank Nickerson; San Miguel and 34 of his men were killed while the Scouts suffered 3 dead. Guillermo and other survivors escaped to Mt. Laniting, near Boso-Boso (now asitio of Barangay San Jose, Antipolo City).

Issue of June 12, 1903, Page 1

On June 10, 1903 Colonel Guillermo was captured by the Philippine Constabulary. He was charged and convicted of bandolerismo (brigandage). On Oct. 24, 1903, he was sentenced to death by the Court of First Instance of the Province of Rizal.

On April 12, 1904, the Supreme Court of the Philippines headed by Cayetano S. Arellano (LEFT), a Filipino and the first Chief Justice, affirmed the judgment of the lower court; also concurring were Filipino associate justices Florentino Torres and Victorino Mapa, and American associate justice Joseph Cooper. The lone dissenter was American associate justice John Mcdonough who recommended the commutation of the death sentence to life imprisonment. (Arellano and Torres were among the founders of the pro-American Partido Federal on Dec. 23, 1900).

On May 20, 1904, Colonel Guillermo died at the gallows in Pasig, Rizal. He was 44 years old and a widower.

Sept. 13, 1907: Macario Sakay dies at the gallows

1907 Photo. L to R, seated: Julian Montalan, Francisco Carreon, Macario Sakay and Leon Villafuerte; L to R, standing: Benito Natividad and Lucio de Vega

Filipino resistance to American rule did not end with the capture of Emilio Aguinaldo on March 23, 1901. There were numerous resistance forces fighting for independence until 1910. One of these forces was led by Macario Sakay who established the "Republika ng Katagalugan" ( literally, "Tagalog Republic", but by "Katagalugan", Sakay meant the entire Philippines, and not only the Tagalog-speaking provinces; he and his men were loathed to use "Philippines", which was named after King Philip of Spain).

He was born on Tabora St. in 1870 in Tondo, Manila, it is presumed, out of wedlock since Sakay was his mother's family name. He worked as an apprentice in a kalesa (a horse drawn carriage) manufacturing shop and as a tailor. 

A Filipino theater in Manila, circa 1898.

Sakay also acted in komedyas and moro-moros, which were stage plays named for their depiction of Christian/Muslim conflict. During this time, it can be safely assumed that he met Bonifacio who was also from Tondo and acted in moro-moros as well.

In 1894, Sakay joined the Dapitan, Manila branch of the Katipunan.  Sakay fought side by side with Bonifacio in the hills of Morong (now Rizal) Province. Captured by the Americans and amnestied in July 1902, Sakay established the Republika ng Katagalugan in the mountains of Southern Tagalog.  He operated in the provinces of Morong, Laguna, Cavite, and Tayabas (now Quezon). His headquarters was first in Mt. Cristobal, Tayabas, and later transferred in the mountains of Morong. 

This vest with all its religious figures and Latin phrases belonged to Macario Sakay. It was his "anting-anting" (amulet) and he believed it protected him from bullets and other hazards of war. Many Filipinos who participated in the fight against Spain and theUnited States used anting-antings of all types for personal protection.

Sakay and many of his followers favored long hair, something strange for his era. This affectation was exploited by the Americans in their efforts to portray Sakay and his men as wild bandits. The Tagalog Republic enjoyed the support of the Filipino masses in Morong, Laguna, Batangas, and Cavite. The Philippine Constabulary continually complained of municipal authorities cooperating and abetting Sakay.

Sakay taxed merchants, farmers, and laborers ten percent of their income. He ordered those who could pay but refused to do so to be arrested and put to work. Suspected informers were liquidated, tortured or had their ears and lips cut off as a warning to others.

A company of the Philippine Constabulary . Photo taken in the early 1900's.

The Philippine Constabulary and the U.S. Army employed  "hamletting" or reconcentration in areas where Sakay received strong assistance. This cruel counter-insurgency technique proved disastrous for the Filipino masses. The forced movement and reconcentration of a large number of people caused the outbreak of diseases such as cholera and dysentery. Food was scarce in the camps, resulting in numerous deaths.

Philippine Constabulary troops, circa 1906

The Philippine Constabulary relentlessly operated search and destroy missions in an attempt to suppress Sakay's forces.

A unit of the Moro Constabulary in Zamboanga, Mindanao Island, circa 1906

The Muslim Moro Constabulary  was brought in from Mindanao Island; Bloodhounds from California were imported to pursue Sakay and his men.

On Jan. 31, 1905 the writ of habeas corpus was suspended in the provinces of Cavite and Batangas.

In mid-1906, Governor-General Henry Clay Ide (LEFT) wrote Sakay and promised that if he and his men surrendered, they would be amnestied. The letter was read by Dominador Gomez, a popular labor leader and politician, to Leon Villafuerte, one of Sakay's generals.

Gomez advised Villafuerte to assure Sakay that a Philippine Assembly comprised of Filipinos will be formed to serve as the "gate of kalayaan.(freedom)." His surrender was necessary to establish a state of peace that was a prerequisite for the election of Filipino delegates to the Philippine Assembly. Gomez acted as the intermediary in the succeeding negotiations.

Issue of June 16, 1906

On June 16, 1906 Sakay took the bait, went down to Manila from the hills of Tanay, Morong, and surrendered to Col. Harry H. Bandholtz, Director of the First Constabulary District. Sakay and his men were followed by a brass band and hundreds of townspeople shouting "Long Live Sakay! Long Live the Patriots!"

Sakay viewed his surrender not as capitulation but as a genuine step towards independence. He believed that the struggle had shifted to constitutional methods and that through the Philippine Assembly, the Filipinos could win their independence. 

On July 17, 1906, Sakay and his staff attended a dance hosted by Col. Louis J. Van Schaick, acting governor of Cavite. Just before midnight, they were arrested. 

On Aug. 22, 1906 Sakay, Francisco Carreon, Lucio De Vega, Cornelio Felizardo, Julian Montalan and Leon Villafuerte were arraigned in the sala of Judge Ignacio Villamor and accused of bandolerismo under the Brigandage Act of  Nov. 12, 1902, which interpreted all acts of armed resistance to American rule as banditry.

The specific charges against Sakay and his men were robbery in band, murder, rape, arson and kidnapping.

During the trial, Dominador Gomez (RIGHT, in 1907) was not around to produce the letter from the American governor-general. He did not even show up and the letter had mysteriously disappeared. (Gomez won a seat in the First Philippine Assembly).

Judge Villamor (LEFT) convicted all the men as charged; Sakay and De Vega were sentenced to be hanged, and the rest were sentenced to life in prison.

[Ignacio Villamor was born on Feb.1,1863, in Bangued, Abra. He completed his Law Course at the University of Santo Tomas in 1893. In 1898, he represented Ilocos Sur in the Malolos Congress and helped draw up a constitution for the First Philippine Republic. He was a founding member of the pro-American Partido Federalwhen it was organized on Dec. 23, 1900. Under the American regime, he served as judge, Attorney-General, the first Filipino executive secretary, the first Filipino President of the University of the Philippines (appointed June 7, 1915), and Associate Justice of the Supreme Court (appointed May 19, 1920). He died on May 23, 1933].

New-York Tribune, July 27, 1907, Page 3

On July 26, 1907, the death sentences on Sakay and De Vega were affirmed by the Supreme Court of the Philippines headed by Cayetano S. Arellano. 

The "Presidio de Manila", more popularly known as the Carcel de Bilibid or Bilibid Prison, as it looked in 1899; the American-run prison was crammed with "brigandage" suspects, with a soaring death from overcrowding and malnourishment in these years, 72 per 1,000 in 1902, 99 per 1,000 in 1903, 118 per 1,000 in 1904, and by September 1905, 438 per 1,000. The prison is still operational as of the early 21st century and is known as "Manila City Jail".

On Friday, 9:00 am, Sept. 13, 1907,  at the Bilibid Prison in Manila, Lucio de Vega  ascended the scaffold first. "We are members of the revolutionary force that defended our country, the Philippines. We are the true Katipuneros!" He shouted moments before the hangman's noose was placed around his neck. 

He was followed by Macario Sakay who paused briefly  and said these parting words:

"Death comes to all of us sooner or later, so I will face the Lord Almighty calmly. But I want to tell you that we were not bandits and robbers, as the Americans have accused us, but members of the revolutionary force that defended our mother country, Filipinas! Farewell! Long live the republic and may our independence be born in the future! Farewell! Long live Filipinas!"

The US Army hangs two Filipinos. Photo taken in the early 1900's.

Three "Ladrones" (bandits) are about to be hanged in Tayabas Province (now Quezon). The Brigandage Act of 1902 interpreted all acts of armed resistance to American rule as banditry. PHOTO was taken in the early 1900s.

The three "Ladrones" in preceding photo are dead, after the drop.

Manila Grand Opera House on Calle Dulumbayan (renamed Rizal Avenue in 1911), Sta. Cruz district, Manila, where the First Philippine Assembly was inaugurated on Oct. 16, 1907. An election was held on July 31, 1907. The qualified voters were severely limited to those who owned real property worth five hundred pesos; could write and read; and could speak Spanish or English. Only about 1.41 % of the population voted.

The First Philippine Assembly: Of the 80 elected delegates, 79 were present during the inauguration. The first session was actually held at the Ayuntamiento de Manila in Intramuros district in the afternoon of the same day. The Ayuntamiento was a two-storey building occupying half a block near the Manila Cathedral. The  Assembly was the lower house (all Filipino members), and the Philippine Commission (all Americans) served as the upper house. The all Filipino Assembly seemed to be a promise of independence from the Americans. Closer to the truth was that it was meant to pacify into colonial contentment a people fresh from a losing war of liberation.

Gen. Artemio "Vibora" Ricarte: He never surrendered

1st commanding general of the Philippine army: March 22, 1897 to Jan 22, 1899. Born on Oct 20, 1866 in Batac, Ilocos Norte. His original surname was “Dodon,” the Ilocano word for “grasshopper.”

He graduated from the Colegio de San Juan de Letran with a Bachelor of Arts degree. He took up teaching at the Universidad de Santo Tomas and then at the Escuela Normal de Manila.

He supervised a primary school in San Francisco de Malabon (now General Trias, Cavite). He embraced freemasonry and was made a master mason in September 1896. He joined the Katipunan in Cavite and adopted the name Vibora (viper).

Ricarte (LEFT, in 1898 photo) operated in Cavite, Laguna and Batangas. Aguinaldo ordered him to remain in Biyak na Bato, San Miguel, Bulacan to supervise the surrender of arms and to see to it that the Spanish government complied with the terms of the Biyak na Bato peace pact of Dec. 14, 1897.

Aguinaldo renewed the revolution upon his return from exile in Hong Kong on May 19, 1898.

On June 2, 1898, at San Francisco de Malabon (now General Trias), Cavite Province, Ricarte accepted the surrender of  General Leopoldo Garcia Peña, the Spanish commanding general in Cavite, who gave up with 2,800 men.

When the Fil-Am War started on Feb. 4, 1899, he was Chief of Operations of the Filipino forces in the second zone around Manila. In June 1900 he and some of his men sneaked into Manila,  intending to organize the populace for an uprising. On July 1, 1900 Ricarte was arrested at the foot of the Paco bridge. He was confined at the American military headquarters on Anda street in Intramuros, Manila.

Original caption: "Insurgent leaders deported to Guam"

On Jan. 16, 1901, Ricarte was put on the USS Rosecrans and deported to Guam, along with the following 31 military officers and civilians:  GENERALS Francisco de losSantos, Pio del Pilar, Maximino Hizon and Mariano Llanera; COLONELS Lucas Camerino,  Esteban Consortes,  Macario de Ocampo and Julian Gerona; LT. COLONELS  Mariano Barroga, Pedro Cubarrubias, Hermogenes Plata and Cornelio Requestis;  MAJOR Fabian Villaruel; SUBORDINATE ARMY OFFICERS Igmidio de Jesus, Jose Mata, Alipio Tecson  and Juan Leandro Villarino; CIVILIANS Lucino Almeida, Pio Barican, Jose Buenaventura, Anastacio Carmona, Bartolome de la Rosa,  Norberto Dimayuga, Doroteo Espina, Silvestre Legaspi, Apolinario Mabini, Juan Mauricio, Pablo Ocampo, Antonio Prisco Reyes, Simon Tecson and Maximino Trias.  

[On Jan. 24, 1901, an additional 11 men from Ilocos Norte, described by the Americans as "insurgent abettors, sympathizers and agitators", were loaded on the USS Solace and also deported to Guam. They were:  Faustino Adiarte, Pancracio Adiarte, Florencio Castro, Inocente Cayetano, Gavino Domingo, Pedro Erando, Leon Flores, Jaime Morales, Pancracio Palting, Marcelo Quintos and Roberto Salvante.]

In response to public demand in the US, Ricarte (RIGHT, in 1898) and others were allowed to leave Guam. They arrived in Manila on the U.S. transport Thomas on Feb. 26, 1903. Ricarte was the only one who refused to take the oath of allegiance to the US. He was transported to Hong Kong and there kept under the surveillance of American agents. His mail address in Hong Kong was "U.G. Viper, Esq., Ripon Terrace, Bonham Road". Jointly with Manuel Ruiz Prin, he established the United Democratic Filipino Republican Committee.

He slipped back to the Philippines on Dec. 25, 1903 hoping to rekindle the Revolution; the Americans offered a reward of $10,000 for information leading to his capture, dead or alive.

A company of the Philippine Constabulary. Photo taken between 1906 and 1910.

Ricarte was arrested by the Philippine Constabulary on May 29, 1904 at the cockpit in Mariveles, Bataan Province, where he had gone to meet some co-conspirators. He was then acting as a clerk for a Justice of the Peace under the name of "Jose Garcia". He was denounced by Luis Baltazar,  a clerk of the Court of First Instance in Bataan.

American photographer's caption: "Ricarte--'The Viper'--Now doing 6 years in Bilibid".   "THE only free Filipino," a journalist wrote in describing General Artemio Ricarte during the American rule in the country. To the very end, Ricarte remained true to his vow never to take the oath of allegiance to the United States.

The "Presidio de Manila", more popularly called the Carcel de Bilibid or Bilibid Prison. Photo taken in 1902.

Ricarte was brought to Manila and conducted into the sala of Judge Manuel Araullo (LEFT, in 1922). He was charged and found guilty of illegal possession of firearms and conspiracy. Judge Araullo sentenced him to six years' solitary confinement in prison and to pay a fine of $10,000.

(Araullo was a founding member of the pro-American Partido Federal when it was organized on Dec. 23, 1900. He later served as Chief Justice of the Supreme Court from Nov. 1, 1921 until his death on July 26, 1924. Manuel Araullo High School in Manila and Araullo University in Nueva Ecija were named in his honor). 

Colorized photo of the Carcel de Bilibid or Bilibid Prison, taken in the early 1900's.  Officially named Carcel y Presidio Correccional (Correctional Jail and Military Prison), it was established on June 25, 1865 under a Spanish royal decree. In 1940 the prisoners, equipment and facilities were transferred to a new prison in Muntinlupa, Rizal Province, called "The New Bilibid Prison". The old facility is still being used by the City of Manila as its detention center, known as Manila City Jail.

Ricarte served his sentence at the Bilibid Prison in Manila until his release on June 26, 1910. As soon as he stepped out of Bilibid, he was met and detained by several American police agents and brought to the Bureau of Customs. He was asked to swear allegiance to the US; he declined and he was once more deported to Hong Kong.

While in Hong Kong, Ricarte published a magazine entitled "El Grito del Presente" (Cry of the Present).

In May 1911, he married Agueda Esteban (LEFT, in old age) who had gone to Hong Kong the previous year; she was the widow of Lt. Col. Mariano Barroga, a Katipunero and later an officer in the Philippine Republican Army, and Ricarte's fellow deportee to Guam (Colonel Barroga died in November 1902). Ricarte, Agueda and stepdaughter Salud lived on Lamma Island and later inKowloon.

In 1913, to dissociate the country from its colonial heritage, Ricarte (RIGHT, ca 1910's), proposed that the Philippines, which was named after King Philip of Spain, be renamed “Rizaline Islands” in honor of national hero Jose Rizal and Filipinos, “Rizalines”.

In 1915, during World War I, the British government removed all political exiles from Hong Kong. The Ricartes were shipped to Shanghai and from there, toJapan. They resided in Aichiken, then Tokyo, where Ricarte made his living by teaching Spanish at the Kaigai Shokumin Gakko (Overseas School).

Artemio Ricarte (standing, 3rd from left), his wife Agueda Esteban (standing, 2nd from right),  and Filipino acquaintances in front of Ricarte's restaurant, Karihan Luvimin. SOURCE: Ambeth Ocampo's album "History."

In April 1923, they moved to Yokohama. They lived at 149 Yamashita-cho, Yokohama. Ricarte put up a restaurant whose earnings allowed the family to live in comfort. 

Nov. 15, 1935:  Inauguration of the Commonwealth of the Philippines.

At the inauguration of the Philippine Commonwealth on Nov. 15, 1935, the giant Philippine flag, made of Japanese silk, was a gift from General Artemio Ricarte, who was still in exile in Japan. His gift of the Philippine flag was a token of solidarity with his countrymen as they embarked on full autonomy, the penultimate step to independence.

Artemio Ricarte and his wife Agueda, photo taken in Manila during the Japanese occupation.

Ricarte collaborated with the Japanese during World War II; on Dec. 21, 1941 they flew him back to the Philippines, via Aparri, Cagayan---he was then 75 years old. 

On Feb. 16, 1942, Time Magazine reported: "Old General Artemio Ricarte y Vibora drove proudly about Manila in a sleek limousine, with a spluttering escort of Jap motorcycle guards."

On Oct 14, 1943, he and Gen. Emilio Aguinaldo raised the Filipino flag during the inauguration of the Japanese-sponsored "Second PhilippineRepublic".

Ricarte was not given a high position by the Japanese because of his advanced age. He toured the provinces and promoted cooperation with Japan [RIGHT].

The Americans returned on Oct. 20, 1944, initially smashing Japanese forces on Leyte Island. They proved unstoppable from then on.

On Dec. 8, 1944, Ricarte (LEFT, in Japanese military garb) and Benigno Ramos organized a quisling militia, the Makapili (Makabayan Katipunan ng mga Pilipino) or "Alliance of Patriotic Filipinos", which eventually numbered 5000 strong. It assisted the Japanese in anti-guerilla operations. Roundups of suspected American agents intensified, and there were lineups at which hooded Makapilis denounced suspects who were then imprisoned and tortured in the dungeons of Fort Santiago. Only a few survived the ordeal.

In January 1945, when General Tomoyuki Yamashita was preparing to abandon Manila, Japanese officials offered to evacuate him to Japan. Ricarte declined. He said: "I cannot take refuge in Japan at this critical moment when my people are in direct distress. I will stay in my Motherland to the last."

He fled with Japanese forces under Yamashita into the mountains of northern Luzon.

Without his knowing it, the Japanese executed some 20 of his relatives because the Japanese feared that they knew too much. His own grandson, Besulmino Romero, would have been executed, too, had he not understood what the Japanese were saying and pleaded with them to spare his life,

Hungduan Rice TerracesThe rice terraces in Hungduan have been inscribed in the UNESCO World Heritage List as a cultural Landscape. This confirms the exceptional universal value of the rice terraces as a cultural landscape which deserves protection for the benefit of all humanity

Ricarte and Yamashita's army held out in the scenic, highland town of Hungduan, Ifugao Province (then a part of Mountain Province). Ricarte was afflicted with dysentery  and with very little to eat, he fell seriously ill and died on July 31, 1945 at the age of 78. He was originally buried on the slopes of  Mt. Napulawan. (Yamashita surrendered on Sept. 2, 1945 in Kiangan, Ifugao).

General Ricarte's remains now lie at the Libingan ng mga Bayani ("Cemetery of Heroes"),  Fort Bonifacio, Taguig, Metro Manila.

The corvette BRP Artemio Ricarte (PS37) was named in the hero's honor by the Philippine Navy. She was originally called HMS Starling  of the Hong Kong Squadron of the British Royal Navy. The ship was built by Hall Russell in the United Kingdom and was commissioned into Her Majesty's British Royal Navy service in 1984. The corvette was  sold to the Philippines and turned over to the Philippine Navy on August 1, 1997 when Hong Kong was ceded back to China.

Background: The Philippine Revolution and the Spanish-American War


The Philippines (LEFT, 1898 map) was a colony of Spain from 1571 to 1898. Spanish rule came to an end as a result of the Philippine Revolution and US involvement with Spain's other major colony, Cuba.

The Philippine archipelago, with  a total land area of 300,000 sq km (115,831 sq mi), comprises 7,107 islands in the western Pacific Ocean, located close to the present-day countries of Indonesia, Malaysia, Palau and the island of Taiwan.

The capital, Manila, is 6,977 miles (11,228 km) distant --- "as the crow flies" --- across the Pacific Ocean from San Francisco, California, U.S.A. The two cities are separated by 6,061 nautical miles of water.

Luzon and Mindanao are the two largest islands, anchoring the archipelago in the north and south. Luzon has an area of 104,700 sq km (40,400 sq mi) and Mindanao has an area of 94,630 sq km (36,540 sq mi). Together, they account for 66% of the country's total landmass.


Only nine other islands have an area of more than 2,600 sq km (1,000 sq mi) each: Samar, Negros, Palawan, Panay, Mindoro, Leyte, Cebu, Bohol and Masbate.

More than 170 dialects are spoken in the archipelago, almost all of them belonging to the Borneo-Philippines group of the Malayo-Polynesian branch of the Austronesian language family.

Twelve major dialects  – Tagalog, Cebuano, Ilocano, Ilonggo, Bicol, Waray, Pampango, Pangasinense; Southern Bicol, Kiniray-a, Maranao, Maguindanao and Tausug (the last three in Muslim areas of Southern Philippines) – make up about 90% of the population.

The population in 1898 was about 9 million.

Spanish soldiers in the Philippines. Photo taken in 1896.

Spanish field kitchen in the Philippines, 1896 or 1897

Spanish troops battling Filipino rebels in the undergrowth; photo taken in 1896 or 1897.

The Cuban Insurrection broke out on Feb. 24, 1895.  The rebels were led by the poet Jose Marti y Perez, now considered as Cuba's national hero (LEFT).

The Cubans had set up propaganda in the United States to support their cause for independence; the Cuban community had built connections with senators, congressmen and with the press.

American business interests were perturbed by the tumult in Cuba;  in addition, public opinion in the US became aroused by newspaper accounts of the brutalities of Spanish rule. These reports were not exaggerated: between 200,000 and 400,000 Cuban civilians died from starvation and disease in Spanish concentration camps.

The 1890's were marked by mounting efforts in the United States to extend American influence overseas. These were often justified by references to Manifest Destiny, a belief that territorial expansion by the United States was both inevitable and divinely ordained; this belief enjoyed widespread support among U.S. citizens and politicians.

Manifest Destiny was promoted by the publishers of several prominent U.S. newspapers, particularly  William Randolph Hearst (LEFT), the publisher of The New York Journal, and Joseph Pulitzer (RIGHT), the publisher of the New York World.

They called for the United States to intervene on the side of the Cubans.

The spirit of imperialism growing in the United States—fueled by supporters of Manifest Destiny—led many Americans to believe that theUnited States needed to take aggressive steps, both economically and militarily, to establish itself as a true world power.

Fearing U.S. intervention in Cuba, Spain moved to a more conciliatory policy, promising home rule with an elected legislature. The Cuban rebels rejected this offer and the war for independence continued.

The Roanoke Daily Times., Roanoke VA, Aug. 22, 1896, page 1

Aug. 30, 1896:  Dead Filipino rebels found inside the Cordeleria de Peñafrancia, the rope factory owned by Sancho Valenzuela in Bacood, Santa Mesa district, Manila.

The Philippine Revolution, led by Andres Bonifacio, broke out on Aug. 30, 1896. The  rebels attacked but failed to capture the Spanish  powder  depot and water reservoir in San Juan del Monte, a suburb of Manila; 153 rebels  and 2 Spanish soldiers died in the fighting that spilled over into the adjacent Santa Mesa district of Manila. Uprisings in other places took place shortly thereafter.

Aug. 30, 1896: First Filipino POWs of the Philippine Revolution. The tallest prisoner is Sancho Valenzuela; he and fellow rebels Ramon Peralta, Modesto Sarmiento and Eugenio Silvestre, were executed by firing squad at the Luneta, Manila, on Sept. 6, 1896. Valenzuela was hard to kill:  four more shots, fired close to his head, scattered his brains over the grass.

Governor-General Ramon Blanco (RIGHT) placed the first eight provinces to revolt against Spanish sovereignty under martial law. They were Manila, Laguna, Bulacan, Batangas, Cavite, Pampanga, Tarlac, and Nueva Ecija.

Hundreds of suspects were arrested, questioned under torture, imprisoned or deported to the Carolines or to the Spanish island colony of Fernando Po in faraway Africa.  [The Caroline Islands are found in the western Pacific Ocean, northeast of New Guinea. At present, they are divided between Micronesia and Palau. This area was also called Nuevas Filipinas or New Philippines as they were part of the Spanish East Indies and governed from Manila. Fernando Po Island, where 151 Filipinos were deported on Oct. 14, 1896, is now known as Bioko in the Republic of Equatorial Guinea.]

PHOTO taken in 1894.  Between 1823 and 1897, 158 patriots and martyrs were executed on the Luneta promenade by the Spanish colonial administration

Retouched photo of Spanish soldiers executing Filipinos on the Luneta, ca 1896-1897

A great number of Filipinos were executed at the Luneta in Manila or elsewhere.

The San Francisco Call., Sept. 7, 1896, page 1

Nevertheless, despite the repression, tortures and executions, the revolution continued to spread throughout the archipelago.

The Evening Bulletin, Oahu, Hawaii, issue of Oct. 12, 1896, describes events at Cavite, Manila, and Amoy (China) in the first 3 weeks of September 1896

1896 or 1897: Spanish soldiers lead a Filipino rebel to execution

1896 or 1897: Spanish firing squad executes two captured Filipino rebels

1896 or 1897: Six Filipino rebels are about to die

Same scene as in preceding photo, after the shots were fired. Original caption: "Fusilamientos de insurrectos, ca. 1896-1898.MUSEO DEL EJÉRCITO, Madrid". Photo was probably taken in 1896 or 1897.

Oct. 1, 1896:  A battalion of Spanish marine infantry -- part of the "Ejercito Expedicionario" -- arrives in Manila. This first reinforcement from Spain consisted of 22 officers and 895 men commanded by Col. Juan Herrera.

Oct. 1, 1896:  Spanish marines of the "Ejercito Expedicionario" march in Manila

Oct. 1, 1896:  The Spanish marines head for Intramuros, the walled district of Manila.

October 1896:  A company of Spanish soldiers in Manila.

1896: Group of Spanish soldiers in the patio of their quarters in Intramuros district, Manila.

The Islander, Harbor, Washington, issue of Oct. 29, 1896

A Spanish Army Sergeant in 1896.

A native Filipino soldier in the Spanish Army. Photo was taken in the mid-1890s.

A native Filipino member of the Guardia Civil Veterana, clothed in the 3 types of Guardiauniforms: (LEFT to RIGHT) De Cuartel (barracks), De Marcha (field) and De Gala(ceremonial). In October 1897, two months before the truce of Biyak-na-Bato, there were 3 Guardia Civil regiments in the Philippines with a total manpower of 155 Spanish officers and 3,530 natives. The Guardia Civil discharged both military and police functions.

Oct. 31, 1896: The cells of Fort Santiago in Manila were jampacked with suspected rebels and 52 Filipinos died due to asphyxiation

1896: Spanish soldiers in the field, probably in Cavite Province

Spanish friars of the Dominican Order, ca 1875-1880.  A major cause of the Philippine Revolution was the tyranny, oppressive practices and blatant racism of the religious orders.

[Friarocracy --- the power of religious orders --- was a constant of Spanish colonial rule over the centuries. Friars of the Augustinian, Dominican and Franciscan orders conducted many of the executive and control functions of government on the local level. They were responsible for education, health, census-keeping and tax collection, and supervised the selection of local police and town officers. They kept a tight rein on public morals and reported seditious activities to the authorities. Contrary to the principles of the Roman Catholic Church, they used information gained in confession to pinpoint troublemakers.]

Spanish military and civil officials in front of Puerta de Isabel II. The huge man, 2nd from right, is unidentified.

Original caption:  "Spanish luxury in the old days."  Photo taken in Manila in the 1890's

Spanish civilians at a station of the Ferrocaril de Manila a Dagupan (Manila-Dagupan Railway).  The line, launched on Nov. 24, 1892,  was part of the British-owned Manila Railway Company.  Photo taken in the 1890's.

Two Spanish women and an upper-class Filipina in Manila.   Photo taken in the 1890's.

Spanish schoolgirls in Manila.  Photo taken in 1890.

Bullfighting in Manila in the 1890s.  The bull ring was located in Paco district.  An American writer who was in the Philippines in 1898-99, Joseph L. Stickney, described the state of the sport in the country: "Neither Spanish bull-fighters nor Spanish bulls are brought to the island, so that native talent has to be obtained to play both roles. The bulls are timid and lazy, the bull-fighters are little better, so that the traveler does not see bullfighting of the same sort that he would in Spain, Cuba or Mexico."

Two roosters are about to "spar". Cockfighting, or "sabong", is deeply ingrained in Philippine culture. It dates back to the pre-Spanish era; it was, and still is, the king of sports in the countryside. In actual bouts, the roosters battle with 4-inch razor-sharp steel gaffs attached to the back of their left legs. Considered as too brutal, cockfighting has long been banned or driven underground in most other countries, but it remains largely popular in the Philippines and is virtually the national sport. [PHOTO taken in the 1890's].

Photo taken in Manila in the 1890's

Filipinos at a religious procession with fish.  Photo taken in the 1890's.

Filipinos at a religious procession with fish.  Photo taken in the 1890's

Bonifacio, a gifted public speaker and mass organizer but a poor combat tactician, faltered in battle. On the other hand,  the reticent Emilio Aguinaldo, the second leading personality in the revolution, made others do the political work for him; what he lacked in charisma, he made up for with an innate military acumen. He scored spectacular victories over the better-armed Spaniards in Cavite --- the heartland of the revolution ---  and except for the Cavite peninsula, had gained control over the entire province. A power struggle ensued between the two men, the contentious issue being who was abler to lead the war for freedom.

Spanish troops defending a house

General Blanco tried to maintain Spanish control by shifting to a more conciliatory policy. He declared to the effect that it was not the purpose of his Government to oppress the people and he had no desire "to slaughter the Filipinos."

The Evening Times, Washington, D.C., issue of Nov. 19, 1896

The new benign strategy did not sit well with the Spanish friars. They wanted the restive Filipinos to be flogged into submission.

The Manila Cathedral was the seat of the Archbishop of Manila during the Spanish colonial period; it still remains as the ecclesisastical seat of the Archdiocese of Manila. (PHOTO was taken in 1900).

Manila Archbishop Bernardino Nozaleda and the religious orders worked hard behind the scenes to get Blanco ousted. They used all possible means, including bribery, to bring about his dismissal.

General Camilo Garcia de Polavieja is honored upon his arrival in Manila, Dec. 3, 1896.

The friars believed that Blanco's newly arrived second-in-command, General Camilo Garcia de Polavieja, would be easier to impress with their point of view.

They sent a telegram to their cohorts in Madrid.

The telegram read thus :

"Situation more grave. Revolt spreading. Apathy of Blanco unexplainable. To remove danger, an urgent necessity is the appointment of a new governor-general. Opinion unanimous, Archbishop and Provincials."

They included Polavieja's name in the shortlist of nominees submitted to the Queen Regent.

On Dec. 13, 1896, Polavieja (RIGHT, in 1896) replaced Blanco as Governor-General.

He proved to be as brutal as his counterpart Valeriano Weyler was in Cuba. Under his direction, the Spanish soldiers seldom took prisoners; civilians were herded into cramped concentration camps. Many died from ill-treatment, disease, and starvation. Polavieja also ordered the execution of the non-militant  reformist Jose Rizal and 24 others.

Sacramento Daily Record-Union, Jan. 17, 1897, page 9

Dec. 30, 1896: Jose Rizal, later enshrined as the Philippines' national hero, is executed at the Luneta, Manila (the Luneta was alternately called Bagumbayan, or “new town" in  Tagalog). Photo was taken by Manuel Arias Rodriguez; this copy is from the Museo del Ejercito in Madrid, Spain.

New York Tribune, Aug. 10, 1897. The Italian anarchist, Michele Angiolillo, claimed that he assassinated Spanish Prime Minister Antonio Cánovas del Castillo on Aug. 8, 1897 to avenge the Barcelona anarchists and Jose Rizal. He was executed by garrote on August 20 of the same year.

Jan. 11, 1897: Thirteen members of the reformist La Liga Filipina -- all freemasons--are about to die at the Luneta, Manila

[One of the martyrs was a pure Spaniard, Moises Salvador. An Insulare (Philippine-born Spaniard), he was born in Quiapo, Manila on Nov. 25, 1868. He walked barefooted to his death spot on the field while calmly smoking a cigar. Moises Salvador Elementary School in Sampaloc district, Manila, was named in his honor on July 13, 1936].

Executed were:  Numeriano Adriano, Jose A Dizon, Domino Franco, Eustacio Mañalac, Cpl. Cristobal Medina, 2Lt. Benedicto Nijaga, Ramon Padilla, Braulio Rivera, Francisco L Roxas, Antonio Salazar, Moises Salvador, Luis Enciso Villareal and Faustino Villaruel

[2Lt. Benedicto Nijaga and Cpl. Cristobal Medina were native Filipino members of the Spanish army. Nijaga Park in Calbayog City, Samar Province, was named in Lieutenant Nijaga's honor].

When the revolution broke out in August 1896, there were about 1,500 Spanish troops posted in the Philippines. Their native auxiliaries numbered around 6,000. Reinforce- ments from Spain were received beginning in October 1896.

"The Revolt in the Philippine Islands: Scenes in Manila,"  Harper's Weekly, New York, January 2, 1897.

By January 1897, a total of 25,462 officers and men had arrived from Spain.  Governor Polavieja had an available force of over 12,000 to suppress the rebels in Luzon island, where the insurrection was most active.

His plan for 1897 had two phases: first, "pacify" the zones separated from Cavite, and then to make an offensive campaign against that province. Accordingly, the month of January saw the fully-loaded Spanish forces successfully attacking the scantily-armed rebels in the provinces of Bulacan, Morong, Bataan, Zambales, Laguna and Batangas. By January 22, Spanish field commanders reported that no rebel force could be found in all Batangas, and the same was reported from Bataan and Zambales.

Spanish map pf the Cavite war front, 1896-1897

On Feb. 13, 1897, Governor Polavieja opened his Cavite campaign and threw 9,277 troops in a full offensive against Aguinaldo. They were led by General Jose Lachambre, Deputy Commander of the Spanish forces.

The important towns of Silang, Dasmarinas, Imus and Bacoor fell in quick succession.

By the middle of March 1897, General Lachambre (RIGHT) had dispersed almost every rebel contingent of any importance in the province.

Brig. Gen. Jose Marina Vega (last name is "Marina"), Commanding Officer of the Second Brigade, Division of Laguna, Batangas and Tayabas, Spanish Army; the division commander was General Jose Lachambre. Despite the unit's nomenclature, its main area of operations was Cavite Province. Photo was taken at a Manila studio in 1897.

Captured family members of a Filipino insurrecto. Photo was taken in 1897 at Imus, Cavite Province.

1896 or 1897: Spanish soldiers with captured Filipino insurrectos

Spanish battery of two breechloading guns firing at the Filipinos at Zapote river bridge.

Spanish battery pounds Filipino positions in Cavite Province

Interior of Spanish entrenchment at Dalahican, Noveleta, Cavite Province.

Spanish entrenchment at Dalahican, Noveleta, Cavite Province.

Spanish army redoubt at Noveleta, Cavite Province.

Spanish army officers and men in the Philippines

Spanish troops at mass, 1897

Spanish soldiers at prayer in Dalahican, Noveleta, Cavite Province.

Spanish soldiers at prayer, circa 1897

Spanish battery of two 13-cm Whitworth cannons at Porta Vaga, Cavite Nuevo (now Cavite City).

Spanish guard at the main entrance to Cavite Nuevo (now Cavite City).

The cuartel (barracks) of the Guardia Civil at Noveleta, Cavite Province. Photo was taken in 1897.

Spaniards bombard Filipino positions at Noveleta Bridge, Cavite Province.

Spaniards discharge their mortar at the Filipinos in Noveleta, Cavite

Spanish cavalry in the Philippines:   In October 1897, two months before the truce of Biyak-na-Bato, there were two Spanish cavalry units in the country; the Regimiento de Caballeria de Filipinas numero 31 (31 officers, 161 Spanish troopers, 453 Filipino  troopers), and the Escuadron de Lanceros Expedicionario numero 1 (11 officers, 162 Spanish troopers).

Spanish cavalry in the Philippines:   A portion of the  Escuadron de Lanceros Expedicionario. Photo was probably taken in 1897 at Cavite Province

Spanish cavalryman in the Philippines

1897: Spanish soldiers in Silang, Cavite Province

Spanish army officers in Bacoor, Cavite Province. Photo probably taken in 1897

Feb. 25, 1897: Spanish firing squads execute mutinuous Filipino customs guards and others at the Luneta, Manila.

On March 22, 1897, rebel delegates met at Barrio Tejeros, San Francisco de Malabon (now General Trias), Cavite, to plot the defense of the beleaguered province. But once the convention opened, the agenda changed: Bonifacio was voted out as rebel chief, Aguinaldo took his place, and the revolutionary organization underwent a total  makeover.

On April 15, 1897, Governor-General Polavieja resigned owing to bad health.

On April 23, 1897, he was replaced by Fernando Primo de Rivera (LEFT, in 1897).

Meanwhile,  Andres Bonifacio's subsequent actions following his ouster led to his execution by Aguinaldo on May 10, 1897.

A few days after Bonifacio's death, Aguinaldo and his men, sorely lacking weapons and  ammunition, abandoned Cavite to avoid total destruction by massive Spanish offensives. The intact rebel army moved to Talisay, Batangas Province, with the Spaniards in hot pursuit.

The Spanish forces surrounded Talisay in the hope of capturing Aguinaldo, but he slipped through the cordon on June 10 and proceeded with 500 handpicked men to the hills of Morong Province (now Rizal). He crossed the Pasig River to Malapad-na-Bato, near Guadalupe, passed through San Juan del Monte and Montalban, and on to Mount Puray.

Biyak-na-Bato:   The Filipino rebels' new base of operations. Photo taken in late 1897

After a short rest, Aguinaldo and his men proceeded to Biyak-na-Bato, San Miguel de Mayumo, Bulacan Province, where he established his headquarters. He joined forces with General Mariano Llanera. The Filipinos' new base of operations was located in the heavily-forested foothills of the Sierra Madre mountain range.

Spanish troops skirmishing with Filipinos in the bamboo

From Biyak-na-Bato, Aguinaldo harassed the Spanish soldiers garrisoned in the Central Luzon Provinces.

Aguinaldo (central figure) in front of the mouth of a cave in Biyak-na-Bato

Filipino revolutionaries at their encampment in Biyak-na-Bato.  Photo taken in late 1897.

The Filipino rebels also established what is now known as the Biyak-na-Bato Republic.

The provisional constitution of this Republic was prepared by Felix Ferrer and Isabelo Artacho, who copied, almost word for word, the Cuban constitution of Jimaguayu. The Biyak-na-bato Constitution was signed on Nov. 1, 1897. Its preamble states:

"The separation of the Philippines from the Spanish monarchy and their formation into an independent state with its own government called the Philippine Republic has been the end sought by the Revolution in the existing war, begun on the 24th of August, 1896; and , therefore, in its name and by the power delegated by the Filipino people, inter- preting faithfully their desires and ambitions, we the representatives of the Revolution, in a meeting at Biac-na-bato, November 1, 1897, unanimously adopted the following articles for the constitution of the State."

Governor Rivera was frustrated by his failure to crush the Filipino revolutionaries.  TheMadrid government had already sent over 50,000 cazadores to the Philippinestogether with several artillery, cavalry, engineer and supporting units, way above the 20,000 troops that the Colonial government had originally estimated it needed to crush the uprising.

Rivera asked for more troops but the home government declined; massive commitment in the Cuban revolution had already tied down more than  150,000 soldiers. Reluctantly, he agreed to negotiate for a truce and perhaps even a settlement of the conflict with the Philippine Independence movement.

The colonial government and the Filipinos knew that to continue hostilities meant an inconclusive war of attrition. The standoff in the battlefield prompted both sides to explore the prospects of an armistice.  A mestizo lawyer, Pedro Paterno, volunteered to act as mediator between the two sides. For four months, he traveled between Manila and Biyak-na-Bato.

December 1897: Seated. L to R, Pedro Paterno, mediator of the Pact of Biyak-na-Bato, and General Emilio Aguinaldo. Standing, L to R, rebel leaders Isabelo Artacho, Baldomero Aguinaldo, Severino de las Alas, Antonio Montenegro and Vito Belarmino. (Paterno became one of the founders, and Montenegro a founding member, of the pro-AmericanPartido Federal when it was organized on Dec. 23, 1900.)

On Dec. 14, 1897, the Pact of Biyak-na-Bato officially halted hostilities.

New-York Tribune, Dec. 17, 1897, Page 1

The Pact ordered Aguinaldo and other major revolutionaries to be exiled and live peacefully in Hong Kong, where they would be paid $800,000 in Spanish-Mexican currency (read as "pesos"; the symbol used for the peso was  "$", basically the same as for the US dollar). Spain would grant an "ample and general amnesty" to the remaining revolutionaries pending they forfeit their arms.

The Pact alluded to "the desire of the Filipino people for reforms", like the suppression and eventual expulsion of the tyrannical and oppressive Friars, secularization of the religious orders, and establishment of an autonomous political and administrative government. [By special request of Governor-General Rivera, these specific conditions were not put down in writing, owing to his assertion that otherwise the Treaty would be in too humiliating a form for the Spanish Government, while on the other hand he guaran- teed on his word as gentleman and officer the fulfillment of the same].

In conclusion, $900,000 was to be paid to the citizens of the Philippines, who suffered greatly from the effects of the war.

Dec. 27, 1897: Emilio Aguinaldo and 36 other Filipino rebel leaders arrive in Dagupan, Pangasinan Province, in a railcar. From left: Gregorio del Pilar, Wenceslao Viniegra, Emilio Aguinaldo and Vito Belarmino. At extreme right is Pedro Paterno, who mediated the Pact of Biyak-na-Bato. From Dagupan, the exiles proceeded to the port of Sual, Pangasinan, where they boarded the merchant steamer SS Uranus; bound for HongKong

Dec. 27, 1897. Emilio Aguinaldo and the other exiles boarding launches at the Port of Sual that took them to the steamer SS Uranus; they reached Hongkong on Dec. 31, 1897.

The Pact, however, was an empty promise for both parties; they were only biding time until they could launch another offensive. Spain had no intention to fully pay up or grant reforms. Comparatively, Aguinaldo planned to use the money to buy arms and ammu- nition and revivify the revolt. Thereafter, Spain actually delivered a mere $600,000 out of the $1,700,000 promised. Filipino prisoners were released on amnesty then rearres-ted on fabricated charges; more than two hundred men were executed. On the other hand, the arms turned in by the rebels consisted of old or broken rifles and pistols, and guns made of bamboo and wrapped in metal.

Two months later, on Feb. 14, 1898, the exiles effectively repudiated the truce when  they undertook to buy arms in Shanghai and Hong Kong to resume the revolution. It had become clear that, as expected, the Spanish authorities would not abide by the terms of the Treaty.  [Aguinaldo had also received a letter from Lt. Col. Miguel Primo de Rivera, nephew and private secretary of Governor Rivera, informing him that neither he nor his companions could ever return to Manila].

Then fate intervened on the other side of the globe.

The USS Maine

On Feb. 15, 1898, at 9:30 p.m., a mysterious explosion sank the American battleshipUSS Maine in Havana Harbor, killing 264 men.

With no proof, purveyors of the "Yellow Press" accused the Spanish of blowing up the ship (although Spain had no motive for doing so). "Remember the Maine" became a call to arms for Americans. 

On April 25, 1898, the U.S. Congress voted for war against Spain.    

President William Mckinley (LEFT) and his war cabinet, 1898.

June 12, 1898: Declaration of Philippine Independence

Brig. Gen. Robert P. Hughes told the US Congress that Filipinos who wanted freedom had "no more idea of its meaning than a shepherd dog."

A tattered flag of the First Philippine Republic, one of  many used during the struggle for independence.  The flag believed by heirs of Emilio Aguinaldo to be that unfurled by the general in Kawit, Cavite, in 1898 is encased in glass at the Aguinaldo Museum on Happy Glen Loop in Baguio City; however, the National Historical Institute has yet to authenticate this flag despite years of probing.  In his letter to Capt. Emmanuel Baja dated June 11, 1925, Aguinaldo mentioned that in their Northward retreat during the Filipino-American War, the original flag was lost somewhere in Tayug, Pangasinan Province; the Americans captured the town on Nov. 11, 1899.

The Aguinaldo Mansion as it looked in 1914

The Aguinaldo mansion in Kawit, Cavite, site of the historic Proclamation of Philippine Independence on June 12, 1898 was declared a national shrine in June 1964. General Emilio Aguinaldo died on Feb. 6, 1964. The balcony did not exist in the 19th century; likewise, although he unfurled it, it wasn't Aguinaldo who waved the Philippine flag from the central window; Ambrosio Rianzares Bautista did.

On June 12, 1898, Emilio Aguinaldo declared the independence of the Filipinos and the birth of the Philippine Republic “under the protection of the mighty and humane North American Union.”.

This momentous event took place in Cavite el Viejo ("Old Cavite", now Kawit), Cavite Province. Admiral Dewey had been invited but did not attend. The Filipino national flag was officially unfurled for the first time at 4:20 PM. The same flag was actually unfurled, albeit unofficially, on May 28, 1898 at the Teatro  Caviteño in Cavite Nuevo---now CaviteCity---right after the battle of Alapan, Imus, Cavite, and again three days later over the Spanish barracks at Binakayan, Cavite, after the Filipinos scored another victory.

Ambrosio Rianzares Bautista (LEFT), War Counsellor and Special Delegate, solemnly read the Acta de la Proclamacion de la Independencia del Pueblo Filipino. The declaration was signed by 97 Filipinos and one retired American artillery officer, Colonel L.M. Johnson. Contrary to common belief, it was Bautista, and not Aguinaldo, who waved the Philippine flag before the jubilant crowd.

He was born on Dec. 7, 1830, in Biñan, Laguna Province. He graduated from the Universidad de Santo Tomas with a  Bachelor of Laws degree. He was known as “Don Bosyong” to peasants and laborers who availed themselves of his free legal services.

When the Philippine-American War ended, Bautista was appointed as judge of the Court of First Instance of Pangasinan Province.  He died of a fatal fall from a horse-drawn carriage on Dec. 4, 1903, at the age of 73.

The June 12 proclamation was later modified by another proclamation done at Malolos, Bulacan, upon the insistence of Apolinario Mabini, chief adviser for General Aguinaldo, who objected to the original proclamation, which essentially placed the Philippines under the protection of the United States.

Apolinario Mabini (RIGHT), also known as the "Sublime Paralytic", was born on July 23, 1864 in Talaga, Tanauan, Batangas Province. He studied at the Colegio de San Juan de Letran where he received his Bachelor of Arts and at the Universidad de Santo Tomas where he received his law degree in 1894.

Early in 1896, he contracted an illness that led to the paralysis of his lower limbs. He was a member of Jose Rizal's La Liga Filipina and worked secretly for the introduction of reforms in the administration of government.

When the revolution broke out on Aug. 30, 1896, the Spanish authorities arrested him. His physical infirmity, however, made the Spaniards believe that they had made a mistake.

The San Juan de Dios Hospital on Calle Real, Intramuros district, Manila.  Photo taken between 1898 and 1902

On July 5, 1897 Mabini was released from prison and sent to the San Juan de Dios Hospital.

In June 1898, while vacationing in Los Baños, Laguna Province, Aguinaldo sent for him. Mabini served as the chief adviser for General Aguinaldo. He drafted decrees and crafted the first ever constitution in Asia for the First Philippine Republic, including the framework of the revolutionary government which was implemented in Malolos in 1899. He also headed the revolutionary congress and the cabinet (until May 7, 1899).

On Dec. 10, 1899, a group of Macabebe Scouts led  the Americans to his hideout in Cuyapo, Nueva Eciija Province. Mabini was imprisoned in Fort Santiago from Dec. 11, 1899 to Sept. 23, 1900. He continued agitating for Philippine  independence after his release. He  rejected offers to serve in the colonial government, and also refused to take the oath of allegiance to the American flag.

On Jan. 16, 1901, Mabini was exiled to Guam. When queried by the U.S. senate on why the paralytic had to be removed from the Philippines, Brig. Gen. Arthur C. MacArthur, Jr., cabled:  "Mabini deported: a most active agitator; persistently and defiantly refusing amnesty, and maintaining correspondence with insurgents in the field while living in Manila, Luzon, under the protection of the United States; also, for offensive statement in regard to recent proclamation enforcing the laws of war. His deportation absolutely essential."

In February 1903, weakened by exile and filled with concern that he might die on foreign soil, Mabini decided - with a heavy heart - to take the oath of allegiance to the United States - a condition for his return to the Philippines.

Apolinario Mabini in Manila. Photo was probably taken on Feb. 26, 1903 when Mabini returned from exile and took the oath of allegiance to the United States.

He was taken to Manila from Guam on the U.S. transport Thomas on Feb. 26, 1903, and  took the oath before the Collector of Customs. However, to the Americans' discomfiture, he resumed his work of agitating for independence.

A cholera epidemic struck Manila in May of that year. Mabini, who was then residing in Nagtahan (ABOVE), contracted the disease. He had consumed large amounts of unpasteurized carabao's milk.

On May 13, 1903, he passed away; he was 2 months and 10 days short of his 39th birthday.

Marcella Agoncillo and family in Hong Kong. They rented a house at 535 Morrison Hill Road, which became the sanctuary and meeting place of the other Filipino revolutionary exiles.

The Philippine flag was sewn in Hong Kong by Marcela Mariño Agoncillo; she was assisted by her 7-year-old daughter, Lorenza, and Delfina Rizal Herbosa Natividad. The generals of the eight provinces which revolted against Spain had replicas and copies made of the original flag.

Marcela Mariño (RIGHT) was born in Taal, Batangas Province on June 24, 1860.  Tall and stately, she was reputedly the prettiest woman in Batangas in her younger years. She finished her education in the Dominican convent of the Colegio de Santa Catalina in the walled district of Intramuros, Manila. She learned Spanish, music, the feminine crafts and social graces. She was also a noted singer and occasionally appeared in zarzuelas in Batangas. [zarzuelasare plays that alternate between spoken and sung scenes].

She married Felipe Agoncillo, a Filipino lawyer who became the leading diplomat of the First Philippine Republic. They had five children, namely:  Lorenza, Gregoria, Eugenia, Marcela, Adela and Maria.

On May 30, 1946, Marcela Agoncillo passed away quietly at the age of 86.

The Philippine National Anthem, then known as "Marcha Nacional Filipina", was played by the band of San Francisco de Malabon during the declaration of independence. It was composed by Professor Julian Felipe (RIGHT) but it had no lyrics yet. The composition had similarities with the Spanish "Himno Nacional Español." Felipe admitted that he purposely put into his composition some melodic reminiscences of the Spanish National Anthem "in order to preserve the memory of Spain."

Felipe was born in Cavite Nuevo (now Cavite City) on Jan. 28, 1861. A dedicated music teacher and composer, he was appointed by Emilio Aguinaldo as Director of the National Band of the First Philippine Republic.

His composition was adopted as the Philippine national anthem on Sept. 5, 1938.

He died in Sampaloc, Manila on Oct. 2, 1944.

To suit the music of  "Marcha Nacional Filipina",   Professor Jose Isaac Palma wrote a poem in Spanish  entitled, "Filipinas" which was published for the first time in the first anniversary issue of the revolutionary newspaper "La Independencia" on Sept 3, 1899. It became the lyrics of the national hymn.

Palma  was born in Tondo, Manila on June 3, 1876. He was educated at the Ateneo Municipal de Manila. He joined the Katipunan in 1896 as an ordinary soldier but later General Antonio Luna who put up "La Independencia",  which became the official newspaper of the Republic, took him in to edit the Tagalog section.

He wrote "Filipinas" in the house of Doña Romana G. vda de Favis at sitio Estacion (nowBarangay Poblacion West), Bautista, Pangasinan Province (Bautista was the old  barrio  Nibaliw of Bayambang; on June 24, 1900, Nibaliw was renamed "Bautista", in honor of San Juan de Bautista or John the Baptist, and upgraded into a separate municipality).

1898: La Independencia staff, with pennames.  FRONT row (L to R):  Fernando Ma. Guerrero (Fulvio Gil), Joaquin Luna, Cecilio Apostol (Catulo)...MIDDLE row (L to R): General Antonio Luna (Taga-Ilog), Florentina Arellano, Rose Sevilla, Salvador del Rosario (X orJuan Tagalo)...BACK row (L to R):  Mariano del Rosario (Tito-Tato), Clemente Jose Zulueta (M. Kaun), Jose C. Abreu (Kaibigan), Epifanio de los Santos (G. Solon), Rafael Palma (Hapon or Dapithapon).

A few members of the "La Independencia" staff (ABOVE) were the first to sing the words of this poem to the tune of the "Marcha." Among themwere Cecilio Apostol, another literary genius during this time; Jose Palma's brilliant brother, Rafael, later to become the president of the University of the Philippines; Fernando Ma. Guerrero who became the editor of "La Opinion" and "El Renacimiento", Epifanio delos Santos, and Rosa Sevilla de Alvero (RIGHT), a journalist,  social worker, educator and women's suffrage advocate.

Palma died in Manila, on Feb. 12, 1903.

The first translation into English of Palma's poem was written in the 1920s by Paz Marquez Benitez of the University of the Philippines. The most popular translation, called the "Philippine Hymn", was written by Senator Camilo Osias and an American, Mary A. Lane. The "Philippine Hymn" was legalized by an act of the Philippine Congress on Sept. 5, 1938. Filipino translations started appearing during the 1940s, the most popular being O Sintang Lupa ("O Beloved Land") by  Julian Cruz Balmaceda, Ildefonso Santos and Francisco Caballo. O Sintang Lupawas approved as the national anthem in 1948. On May 26, 1956, during the term of President Ramon Magsaysay, the Tagalog words were revised. Minor revisions were made in 1966, and it is this final version which is in use today.

The Filipino national flag was hoisted for the first time by Emilio Aguinaldo onMay 28, 1898 at the Teatro Caviteño. The urfurling was witnessed by about 270 captured Spanish marines and a large group of officers and men of the U.S. Asiatic Squadron.

Filipina mestiza poses with a rifle

The San Francisco Call, June 29, 1898

Filipino women and girls in Bacoor, Cavite Province. Photo was taken in 1898.

Facsimile of a pass issued from Bacoor, Cavite Province, by President Emilio Aguinaldo to Associated Press correspondent Martin Egan.  Written in Tagalog, the main dialect in Manila and nearby provinces, it says: "Ang may taglay nito na Americano G Egan ay biniguiang pahintulot na makapaglagos sa kanyang pakay, Kavite 2 Julio 1898 Ang Dictador. (signed) EAguinaldo." A free translation is as follows: "The bearer, the American Mr. Egan, has been given permission to cross Filipino lines in the pursuit of his objectives, Cavite July 2, 1898. The Dictator, (signed) E. Aguinaldo."

US Infantry Troops Arrive In The Philippines, June 30 - July 31, 1898

A portion of the 1st California Volunteer Infantry Regiment that arrived in Cavite Province on June 30, 1898

The first American infantry troops arrived in the Philippines on June 30, 1898. They were commanded by Brig. Gen. Thomas M. Anderson. [He was a son of Maj. Gen. Robert Anderson, who had commanded Fort Sumter at the beginning of the American Civil War in 1861].

With Aguinaldo's consent, they were assigned to the arsenal and Fort San Felipe Neri in Cavite Province.

Spanish troops outside Manila

General Anderson located the outer and inner lines of the Spanish defenses of Manila. It was decided that a joint naval-infantry attack could best be made from the south, and to secure that line of advance pending the arrival of General Merritt, a camp site was selected on the bay shore at Tambo, Paranaque, about 3  miles (5 km) south of Malate, Manila. It was an abandoned peanut farm that offered good access to Manila and easy egress to the sea.

The San Francisco Call, issue of July 8, 1898, reports that Emilio Aguinaldo has proclaimed himself President of the revolutionary Philippine republic on July 1.

The Commandant's House at the Cavite Navy Yard, ca 1899.

On the Fourth of July, during the celebration of America's Independence Day, Brig. Gen. Thomas Anderson invited Emilio Aguinaldo to see thereview of the US First Brigade at the Cavite navy yard. He was indisposed but sent his band instead.

A day or two later Aguinaldo called on General Anderson; he was received with military honors. A company of the 14th US Regulars presented arms as he came to the headquarters building, and the trumpeters blew the General's salute.

He had no confidences to exchange. Aguinaldo asked directly what the Americans intended to do in regard to the Philippines.

"We have lived as a nation 122 years," replied General Anderson, through his interpreter, "and have never owned or desired a colony. We consider ourselves a great nation as we are, and 1 leave you to draw your own inference."

Aguinaldo said to his interpreter:

"Tell General Anderson that I do not fear that the Americans will annex the Philippines, because I have read their Constitution many times and I do not find a provision there for annexation or colonization."

The beach near Camp Dewey at Tambo, Paranaque, 1898.

On July 15 one battalion of 1st California volunteers was placed at Tambo and a depot of supply and transportation established. Two days later, the two remaining battalions of the 1st California regiment were sent over from Cavite, and the camp --- first called Camp Tambo --- was renamed Camp Dewey, in honor of the commander of the naval squadron.


July 1898: American soldiers in San Roque, Cavite Province

On July 17 and 31, the second and third expeditions, under Brigadier-Generals Felix V. Greene and Arthur C. MacArthur, Jr., respectively, arrived in Cavite harbor and were transferred to Camp Dewey, the transfer being completed about August 9.

By this time, 470 officers and 10,464 infantry troops had been stationed in the country.

The incident took place on July 17, 1898.  The Spaniards in Manila, according to theDiario de Manila, looked on the Germans as being their friends and sympathizers, and the advent of Germany's fleet as encouragement to Spanish interests. The Germans saluted the Spanish flag on several occasions after Admiral Dewey established his blockade. Neither the English nor French saluted the Spanish flag, and only in one instance did the Japanese salute it.

July 19, 1898;  More landings of American troops near Manila, and positions of US and foreign ships. [Illustration from The San Francisco Call, issue of July 23, 1898.]

Maj. Gen. Wesley Merritt (West Point class 1860), who had been assigned to the command of the newly created Department of the Pacific, as well as of the 8th Army Corps, assumed command of the US forces upon his arrival on July 25.

Mess of Battery D, California Heavy Artillery at Cavite, 1898.

He found General Anderson's headquarters, with the California Heavy Artillery, 14th and 23rd United States Infantry, and the 2nd Oregon Volunteers, at Cavite; while General Greene was encamped with his brigade at Camp Dewey.

The left, or north, flank of General Greene's camp extended to a point on Calle Real about 3,000 yards (meters) from Fort San Antonio de Abad (ABOVE, in February 1899), a polvorin or powder magazine close to the beach at the southern end of Malate, which formed the right extremity of the outer line of the Spanish defenses of Manila.

Typical Spanish earthworks and shelter

From Fort San Antonio de Abad the Spanish lines extended to the left, eastward, in trenches and blockhouses, through swamps and ricefields, encircling Manila and covering all avenues of approach from the land side.

Spanish barricade at Malate, Manila. Photo was taken after the battle.

An old muzzle loader that the Filipinos captured, and placed in their trenches in front of Fort San Antonio de Abad, Malate, Manila.

The Filipinos occupied positions facing these lines throughout their extent. On Calle Real (now Roxas Blvd.), the road passing Camp Dewey parallel to the beach, the Filipinos had established an earthwork about 800 yards from Fort San Antonio de Abad. They also had possession of the approach by the beach proper, and occupied the Pasay-Manila road, parallel to Calle Real, and about 700 yards to the eastward of it. The outposts of General Greene's camp were posted in rear of the Filipinos.

The Filipinos were persuaded to withdraw from Calle Real in order that the American troops could move forward; the former moved to the east of Calle Real, and the trenches from the beach to Calle Real were occupied by Greene's outposts on July 29. On the right were detached barricades occupied by the Filipinos, extending over to the rice swamp just east of the Pasay road.

Spanish entrenchments near Manila. Photo was taken after the battle.

Facing these, the Spanish works of earth and sand bags, 7 feet high and 10 feet thick, stretched to the eastward, with a slightly concave trace, to Blockhouse 14, a strongly fortified position on the Pasay road, and distant about 1,200 yards from Fort San Antonio de Abad, thus enveloping the American right. Seven guns were mounted in the stone fort on the Spanish right, and two steel 3.2-inch mountain guns near Blockhouse 14; the line was manned throughout its length by infantry, with strong reserves in Malate and Intramuros.

Spanish soldiers in Manila. Photo was taken in 1898

On July 31, shortly before midnight, the Spaniards opened a heavy and continuous fire with infantry and artillery from their entire line. Battery H, 3rd Artillery, the 10th Pennsylvania Volunteers, and 4 guns of batteries A and B, Utah Artillery were in the trenches at the time and sustained the attack for an hour and a half, being reinforced by 1 battalion of 1st California Volunteers and Battery K, 3rd Artillery. The firing ceased at about 2 A. M. The casualties on the American side were 10 killed and 43 wounded.

On August 1, General Merritt organized the American troops into one division (interestingly enough named the 2nd Division; there was no 1st Division) commanded by Brig. Gen. Thomas M. Anderson. Brig. Gen. Arthur C. MacArthur, Jr.,commanded the 1st Brigade and Brig. Gen. Francis V. Greene (West Point Class 1870) commanded the 2nd Brigade.

The brigades and their components:

On the nights of August 1, 2, and 5, the Spaniards opened up again with infantry and artillery fire; one American soldier was killed.

The USS Monterey (CENTER) and the USS Charleston (RIGHT) at Manila Bay.

On August 7, General MacArthur's brigade being in position, and the USS Monterey, for which the navy had been waiting, having arrived, General Merritt and Admiral Dewey sent to the Spanish Governor-General in Manila a joint letter warning him to remove all non-combatants from the city within 48 hours, and notifying him that operations against Manila might begin at any time after the expiration of that period.

The Governor-General replied that on account of being surrounded by the Filipino forces there was no place to which they could safely send their sick, wounded, women, and children.

Merritt and Dewey purposefully left Emilio Aguinaldo out of any plans and preparations regarding the capture of Manila.

On August 9, a formal joint demand was made for the surrender of Manila, based upon the hopelessness of the Spanish situation without possibility of relief, and upon considerations of humanity dictating the avoidance of the useless sacrifice of life entailed in an assault and possible bombardment.

The Spanish cause was doomed, but Fermín Jaudenes (LEFT, in 1898), who had replaced Basilio de Agustin as Governor-General on August 4, devised a way to salvage the honor of his country. Negotiations were carried out through Belgian consul Edouard Andre.

A secret agreement was made between the governor and American military commanders concerning the capture of Manila.

The Spaniards would put up only a show of resistance and, on a prearranged signal, would surrender. In this way, the governor would be spared the ignominy of giving up without a fight. American forces would neither bombard the city nor allow the Filipinos to take part; the Spanish feared that the Filipinos were plotting to massacre them all.

A Filipino is executed by garrote, a strangulation machine. The garrote consisted of a brass collar with a back piece pushed forward by the impulse of a big screw working through a post. The neck of the condemned was placed in the brass collar, and when the executioner turned the handle of the screw, the back piece in the collar pressed against the top of the spine, thereby snapping the spinal cord. PHOTO was taken in 1898.

For centuries the Spanish had ruled the Philippines with a heavy--often deadly--hand. They considered the Filipino people to be ruthless, uncivilized, and sub-human. There was great fear that if the city fell to Aguinaldo and his revolutionary forces, there would be hell to pay.

The Spanish army's Company 3, Casino Club Corps, in the Philippines. Photo taken circa 1898.

Spanish troops in Manila

Spanish soldiers in live fire practice at the Luneta, Manila

Spanish troops drawn up in company formation

The Santa Lucia Gate of Intramuros, the walled district of Manila

Old bronze cannons at Intramuros, the walled district of Manila

Filipino soldiers, their artillery and 2 Americans in Malate district, Manila. Photo was taken on July 1, 1898.

On August 11, a Filipino regiment in the Spanish army was suspected of being about to desert. The Spanish officers picked out six corporals and had them shot dead. Next night the whole regiment went over to Aguinaldo's army with their arms and accoutrements.

On August 12, fighting between American and Filipino troops almost broke out as the former moved in to dislodge the latter from strategic positions around Manila. Brig. Gen. Thomas Anderson telegraphed Aguinaldo, "Do not let your troops enter Manila without the permission of the American commander. On this side of the Pasig River you will be under fire."

Sept. 15, 1898: The Malolos Congress

Following the declaration of independence from Spain on June 12, 1898 by the Revolutionary Government, a congress was opened in Malolos, Bulacan Province  on Sept. 15, 1898 to draw up a constitution for the First Philippine Republic.

Sept. 15, 1898: Filipino soldiers await Emilio Aguinaldo's arrival at Malolos, Bulacan Province

Filipino soldiers at Malolos

President Emilio Aguinaldo and his cabinet in carriages are about to pass under the triumphal arch and over the stone bridge

Emilio Aguinaldo's carriage is about to pass between the ranks of Filipino soldiers drawn up in formation in the churchyard of Barasoain

The basilica at Barasoain was filled with delegates and spectators. Outside, the Banda Pasig played the National Anthem. When Aguinaldo and his officers arrived, the delegates, the cream of the Filipino intelligentsia, spread out to give way to the President. Cries of "Viva!" reverberated.

President Aguinaldo formally declared the victorious conclusion of the war of liberation against Spain.

The Congress proceeded to elect its officers, namely, Pedro A. Paterno, President; Benito Legarda, Vice-President; Gregorio Araneta, First Secretary; and Pablo Ocampo, Second Secretary.

On September 29 the Congress ratified the independence proclaimed at Kawit on June 12, 1898. Aguinaldo partly said in Tagalog:

“ now we witness the truth of what the famous President Monroe said to the effect that the United States was for the Americans; now I say that the Philippines is for the Filipinos.”

A committee to draft the constitution was created with Felipe G. Calderon (LEFT, in 1900) as its most prominent member. With the advise of Cayetano Arellano, a brilliantmestizo, Calderon drew up his plans for a constitution, deriving inspiration from the constitutions of Mexico,Belgium, Guatemala, Costa Rica, Brazil and France. In the session of October 8, Calderon presented the draft of this constitution.

A few other amendments were inserted in the draft constitution before it was sent to Aguinaldo for approval.

It was the first republican constitution in Asia. The document stated that the people had exclusive sovereignty. It stated basic civil rights, separated the church from the state, and called for the creation of an Assembly of Representatives which would act as the legislative body. It also called for a Presidential form of government with the president elected for a term of four years by a majority of the Assembly.

Filipino diplomats in Paris, France, 1898-99. From left: Antonino Vergel de Dios, Ramon Abarca, Felipe Agoncillo, and Juan Luna.

Aguinaldo declared that this constitution was “the first crystallization of democracy” in Asia. He sent ambassadors to the United States, Japan, England, France, and Australia to seek recognition for his government.

After promulgating the Malolos Constitution, the Filipino leaders made preparations to inaugurate the first Philippine Republic.

A session of the Malolos Congress

Officials in Aguinaldo's government, 1898.

Four unidentified prominent Filipinos drinking Schlitz beer. Photo was probably taken between July 1898 and January 1899, either in Cavite or Malolos, Bulacan. The photographer was Lt. James E. Ware of the 14th US Infantry Regiment. His unit arrived in the Philippines in July 1898 and departed in November 1899.

1898: A view of a section of Malolos

Article published in the New York Times on Sept. 17, 1898.

The San Francisco Call, issue of Sept. 23, 1898, Page 8

The San Francisco Call, issue of Sept. 23, 1898, Page 8

The San Francisco Call, issue of Sept. 30, 1898, Page 3

The San Francisco Call, issue of Sept. 30, 1898, Page 3

On Oct. 14, 1898, Admiral George Dewey cabled Washington:  "It is important that the disposition of the Philippine Islands should be decided as soon as possible. . . . General anarchy prevails without the limits of the city and bay of Manila. Natives appear unable to govern."

The San Francisco Call, issue of Oct. 17, 1898, Page 1

The San Francisco Call, issue of Oct. 17, 1898, Page 1

Aguinaldo's official residence at Malolos. PHOTO was taken in 1898.

A church fortified and used as a prison by the Filipinos during their occupancy of Malolos. PHOTO was taken in 1898.

The building on the left was used as a prison during the occupancy of Malolos by the Filipino army. A number of Spanish (and later American) prisoners were confined there. PHOTO was taken in 1898.

A carromata at Malolos. PHOTO was taken in 1898.

The Malolos Congress is featured in Harper's Weekly, New York, Nov. 12, 1898.

Nov. 24, 1898: First Thanksgiving Dinner in the Philippines


The celebrants referred to the main dish as "Dewey's Turkey".  PHOTO was taken in Manila on Thursday, Nov. 24, 1898.

Dec. 10, 1898: Treaty of Paris

Oct. - Dec. 1898: The American Peace Commission at a conference in their council-room at the Continental Hotel, Paris. LEFT TO RIGHT: Whitelaw Reid, Sen. George Gray, John Moore (Secretary), Judge William R. Day, Sen. William P. Frye, and Sen. Cushman K. Davis.

On Oct. 1, 1898, American and Spanish delegates opened discussions in Paris to end the Spanish-American War. The American commission consisted of Judge William R. Day, Sen. Cushman K. Davis, Sen. William P. Frye, Sen. George Gray, and Whitelaw Reid.

The Spanish commission included the Spanish diplomats Eugenio Montero Ríos, Buenaventura de Abarzuza, José de Garnica, Wenceslao Ramírez de Villa-Urrutia, and Gen. Rafael Cerero, as well as a French diplomat, Jules Cambon.

The Times, Washington, D.C., issue of Oct. 2, 1898, Page 1

On the same day, at Washington, D.C., Philippine ambassador Felipe Agoncillo and his secretary, Sixto Lopez, met with President William McKinley but his request that Filipinos be represented at the Paris peace talks was rejected.

Filipino diplomats and leaders in Paris, 1898. SEATED, from left: F. de Almores, Felipe Agoncillo, Pedro Roxas, and Antonino Vergel de Dios. STANDING, from left: B. Villanueva, Antonio Roxas, E. Brias, and P.A. Roxas.

Agoncillo (LEFT) and Felix Roxas (RIGHT) went to Paris and tried to represent the Filipinos in the negotiations, but they were excluded from the sessions as Aguinaldo's declaration of Philippine independence on June 12, 1898 was not recognized by the family of nations.

The snub irked Filipino leaders, whose troops effectively controlled the entire archipelago except Muslim areas in Mindanao and the capital city of Manila.

Tension and ill feelings were growing between American and Filipino troops in Manila and the suburbs. In addition to Manila, Iloilo, the main port on the island of Panay, also was a pressure point. The Revolutionary Government of the Visayas was proclaimed there on Nov. 17, 1898, and an American force stood poised to capture the city. Upon the announcement of the treaty, the radicals, Apolinario Mabini and General Antonio Luna, prepared for war, and provisional articles were added to the constitution giving President Aguinaldo dictatorial powers in times of emergency.

Issue of Nov. 22, 1898

Dec. 10, 1898:  Last joint session of the Treaty of Paris. Attendees (LEFT to RIGHT) are:  Senator William Frye, John Moore (Secretary), Senator George Gray, Senator Cushman Davis, Judge William Day, Whitelaw Reid, General Rafael Cerero, Wenceslao Ramirez de Villa-Urrutia, Jose de Garnica, Buenaventura de Abarzuza, Eugenio Montero Rios, Arthur Ferguson (interpreter), and Emilio de Ojeda.

On December 10 the Treaty of Paris was signed, thus ending the Spanish-American War. Spain ceded  the Philippines, Guam, and Puerto Rico (Cuba was granted its independence); in return, the US paid Spain the sum of US$20 million for the Philippines.(The Philippine-American War, which broke out two months later, cost the United States $200 million).

Diego de los Ríos, the last Spanish Governor-General of the Philippines. He became the governor on Aug. 13, 1898, with the capital at Iloilo on Panay Island, after Governor-General Fermin Jaudenes surrendered at Manila. His term ended on Dec. 10, 1898 when the Treaty of Paris was signed.

On Nov. 26, 1898, the New York Times reported the first observance of Thanksgiving Day in the Philippines by the Americans:

Dec. 21, 1898: Mckinley issues "Benevolent Assimilation" Proclamation

On Dec. 21, 1898, President McKinley issued the BENEVOLENT ASSIMILATION PROCLAMATION, announced in the Philippines onJan. 4, 1899, which stated the U.S.' "altruistic" mission in acquiring the Philippines.

The U.S. have "come, not as invaders or conquerors, but as friends, to protect the natives in their homes, in their employment, and in their personal and religious rights."

Moreover, the U.S. wanted to "win the confidence, respect, and affection of the inhabitants of the Philippines by assuring them in every possible way that full measure of individual rights and liberties which is the heritage of free peoples, and by proving to them that the mission of the United States is one of benevolent assimilation substituting the mild sway of justice and right for arbitrary rule."

The San Francisco Call, issue of Tuesday, Dec. 27, 1898, Page 1

The Evening Times, Washington, D.C., issue of Wednesday, Dec. 28, 1898, Page 1

The San Francisco Call, issue of Thursday, Jan. 5, 1899, Page 5

The San Francisco Call, issue of Thursday, Jan. 5, 1899, Page 5

The San Francisco Call, issue of Thursday, Jan. 5, 1899, Page 5

The Scranton Tribune, Scranton, Pennsylvania, issue of Friday, Jan. 6, 1899, Page 1

On Jan. 5, 1899, Aguinaldo issued a counter-proclamation to Mckinley's "Benevolence". He warned that his government was prepared to fight any American attempt to forcibly take over the country.

This sounded like a declaration of war to the American military although Aguinaldo had no wish to get into a war with the United States. He knew that war would only cause untold suffering to the Filipino people.

He was still hopeful that the situation could be saved by peaceful negotiations between him and the American military leaders in the Philippines.

The Guthrie Daily Leader, issue of Friday, Jan. 6, 1899

The Guthrie Daily Leader, issue of Friday, Jan. 6, 1899

The Guthrie Daily Leader, issue of Friday, Jan. 6, 1899

During the period Jan. 9-29, 1899, the Philippine Government negotiated with General Otis.

The Filipino panel was composed of Manuel Arguelles, Ambrosio Flores, and Florentino Torres; their American counterparts were Brig. Gen. Robert P. Hughes, provost-marshal-general of Manila and inspector-general ; Col. Enoch H. Crowder, judge-advocate-general; and Col. (later Gen.) James F. Smith, of the 1st California Volunteers. [Arguelles, Flores and Torres later abandoned Aguinaldo and became founding members of the pro-American Partido Federal on Dec.23, 1900].

All this while, however, Otis was merely waiting for six regiments of the U.S. army to arrive to supplement his forces against the Filipino army. When they did come in late January, the seventh negotiation session was forthwith called off.

Otis thought he was now ready to carry out President Mckinley's mandate to move on from Manila to occupy all of the archipelago.

The Philippine Army: From "Katipuneros" to "Soldiers"

A chapel where Katipuneros were sworn in. Influenced by the Masonic Order, the Katipunan was established as a secret, fraternal society, complete with Masonic rituals, blood oaths, coded passwords, and an aura of religious mystery. Women were admitted later on although most were exempted from the blood-letting rites.

The Katipunan or KKK was founded by Filipino rebels in Manila on July 7, 1892(Long name: Kataas-taasang Kagalang-galangang Katipunan ng mga Anak ng Bayan or “Supreme and Venerable Society of the Children of the Nation").

The founders --all freemasons-- were: Andres Bonifacio, Ladislao Diwa, Teodoro Plata, Deodato Arellano, Valentin Diaz, Jose Dizon and a few others.

They met secretly at Deodato Arellano's  house on Azcarraga (now Claro M. Recto Avenue), near Elcano Street, Tondo district.

Unlike the pacifist and Europe-based Propaganda Movement, whose members were scions of the elite and wealthy, theKatipunan --- composed of the common people, with only a sprinkling of the well-to-do middle class --- did not dream of mere reforms. It aimed at liberating the country from Spanish tyranny by preparing the people for an armed conflict. Thus the Katipunan was founded on a radical platform, namely, to secure the independence and freedom of the Philippines by force of arms.

Residence of Deodato Arellano on Azcarraga (now Claro M. Recto Avenue), near Elcano Street, Tondo district, birthplace of the Katipunan.

Spanish police headquarters at Tondo district, Manila, 1897.

A seal of the Katipunan emblazoned on a letter written in code and signed with blood

A Katipunero's cedula and a skull used in Katipunan initiation rites

Manila:   The Garrote was a strangulation machine. The two young Filipinomuchachos (male domestic helpers) were sentenced to death for killing their abusive Spanish employer. The execution took place in front of the public slaughterhouse. The photographer, American businessman Joseph Earle Stevens, wrote: "The sight of the unfortunate prisoners...was pitiable in the extreme, and their faces bore marks of unforgettable anguish."

The premature discovery of the plot on Aug. 18, 1896 forced the Katipuneros, as the members called themselves, to open hostilities.

The first major battle of the revolution took place on Aug. 30, 1896 when the Katipunerosattacked but failed to capture the Spanishpolverin (powder depot) and deposito (water reservoir) in San Juan del Monte; 153Katipuneros and 2 Spanish soldiers died.

As the rebellion progressed, a split developed between the Magdiwang faction (identified with Supremo Andres Bonifacio) and the Magdalo faction (loyal to Emilio Aguinaldo), both situated in Cavite Province.

The marker reads: "The Tejeros Convention: A revolutionary assembly was held March 22, 1897 in the building known as the Casa Hacienda of Tejeros that once stood on this site. Presided over by Andres Bonifacio toward the end of the session, the assembly decided to establish a central revolutionary government and elected Emilio Aguinaldo President, Mariano Trias Vice President, Artemio Ricarte Captain General, Emiliano Riego de Dios Director of War and Andres Bonifacio Director of the Interior. Certain events arising in the convention caused Bonifacio to bolt its action (1941)".

At the Tejeros Convention on March 22, 1897 held in Barrio Tejeros, San Francisco de Malabon (now General Trias), Cavite Province, the delegates voted to do away with the Katipunan.  They argued that the insulated fragmentation that had aided the Katipunan's  secrecy had outlived its usefulness; in a wide-open national war for independence, unified leadership was required. A well-defined structure was needed to steer a combat force of thousands. From a small circle of conniving men and women, membership had grown to about 15,000 to 45,000 patriots (up to 100,000, according to some estimates; the previous figures, considered as more credible, were supplied by the Ilocano writer and labor leader, Isabelo de los Reyes, who was born in 1864 and died in 1929).

Bonifacio did not strongly object; the convention went ahead and formed the "Pamahalaang Tagapamatnugot ng Paghihimagsik" or Central Revolutionary Government.

Artemio Ricarte restrains an enraged Andres Bonifacio who tried to shoot Daniel Tirona; the latter had objected to Bonifacio's election as Director of the Interior of the Revolutionary Government. Tirona had argued that the post should not be occupied by a person without a lawyer's diploma. Bonifacio, who had to quit schooling at age 14 due to a family exigency, fumed at the thinly-disguised personal insult.

Emilio Aguinaldo was elected President; when his own election as Director of the Interior was questioned for lack of academic credentials by Daniel Tirona, Bonifacio (RIGHT) took it as a personal affront. At age 14, his father and mother had died forcing him to quit his studies and to look after his younger siblings. As a means of support, he made wooden canes and paper fans which he sold in the streets. (Daniel Tirona became one of the founding members of the pro-American Partido Federal when it was organized on Dec. 23, 1900).

Feeling grievously insulted, Bonifacio hotly declared that by virtue of his authority asKatipunan Supremo, he was voiding and nullifying the decisions of the convention. He stormed out of the convention and drafted his own government and army.

He and his brother Procopio were arrested, tried and convicted of treason; they were executed on May 10, 1897.

(Andres Bonifacio had 4 years of formal schooling compared to 7 years for Emilio Aguinaldo. However, while Bonifacio wrote and spoke good Spanish, Aguinaldo was barely able to speak it).

The Revolutionary Government unified the ragtagKatipunero rebel forces into a cohesive Philippine Revolutionary Army organized along European  lines. It gave each conventional unit a nomenclature and organization. The army  adopted two official names: in Tagalog,  "Hukbong  Pilipinong Mapanghimagsik" and in Spanish "Ejército Revolucionario Filipino".

General Artemio "Vibora" Ricarte was designated as Captain-General (Commanding General). He held this post from March 22, 1897 until Jan. 22, 1899 when he was replaced by General Antonio Luna.
When independence was declared on June 12, 1898, the Philippine Revolutionary Army became the Philippine Republican Army.

The first Philippine Army used the 1896 edition of the Spanish army's  Ordenanza del Ejercito to organize its forces and establish its character as a modern army. Rules and procedures were laid down for the reorganization of the Army, adoption of new fighting methods, regulation of ranks, adoption of new rank insignias and a standard uniform called rayadillo.

Orders and circulars were subsequently issued covering such matters as building trenches and fortifications, equipping every male aged 15 to 50 with bows and arrows to partially meet the acute lack of arms, enticing Filipino soldiers in the Spanish Army to defect, collecting empty cartridges for refilling, prohibiting unplanned sorties, inventories of captured arms and ammunition, fund raising, purchase of arms and supplies abroad, unification of military commands, and exhorting the people to give any material aid, especially food, to the soldiers.

Filipino flag secured by Peter MacQueen, correspondent of The National Magazine in the Philippines in 1899.

Pay scale of officers and men of the Philippine Army, per decree of President Aguinaldo issued from Bacoor, Cavite Province on July 30, 1898. He raised money by taxing merchants, businessmen and well-to-do families. Benito Legarda, director of the treasury department, was described by Joseph Stickney, aide to Admiral Dewey, as "a suave diplomat" and "...just the man to convince a reluctant lot of business men that it will be more pleasing to themselves and more satisfactory to the government for them to part with their money than their blood."

Shoulder bars of Philippine army officers.

The Filipino army's main weapons were the 1893 Spanish Mauser bolt-action 7 mm rifle (TOP); it was reloaded by pressing 5 cartridges stacked in a thin metal clip down through the open bolt; and the single-shot, breechloading Remington Rolling Block .43 Spanish rifle (BOTTOM).

Bladed weapons carried into battle by the Filipino rank-and-file. Officers wielded European-style swords.

The Filipinos were short of artillery; the few guns they possessed were booties from the Spanish army. They  improvised by making cannon out of water pipe, strengthened with timber.

A Filipino iron pipe cannon strengthened with bamboo

A cannon made of bamboo by the Filipinos

Igorots in the Philippine Army. Photo was probably taken in  January 1899 at Candon, Ilocos Sur Province. The Igorots --- numbering 225 --- were hardy mountaineers from the Cordilleras of northern Luzon. They were recruited by Maj. Isabelo Abaya (PHOTO, central figure, with pistol and sword). Abaya was killed in action on May 3, 1900.

Filipino soldiers in Bacolor, Pampanga, 1898. The American photographer's caption: "PORTION OF AGUINALDO'S ARMY IN THE SUBURBS OF BACOLAR. These men were well armed and drilled, and if they had been commanded by officers trained in the military service, they would have made excellent soldiers. But they cannot stand before a charge of American volunteers."

The Filipino soldiers in dark uniforms were former members of the Spanish Army who had defected to the Philippine Republican Army. This photo could have been taken on May 28, 1898, when a native regiment of  the Spanish Army surrendered at San Francisco de Malabon (now General Trias), Cavite Province, and a large number of the men enlisted in the Philippine Army. In his memoirs,  Aguinaldo wrote that about 1,800 crossed over.

The army was divided into an active and a volunteer force. The Active Army was organized into regiments, companies and batteries. In turn, the companies were divided into soldiers with firearms and those without, the duty of the latter - the proportion of five to each rifleman - being to keep themselves close to the rear of the firing line and secure the guns of men who are disabled. The function of the Volunteer Army was the gathering and storing of food supplies and obtaining iron and copper from every possible source for the fabrication of arms. It was also its duty to search the fields for projectiles which had failed to explode, to carry food to the troops, to strengthen daily the defenses and deploy others to suitable sites.

Academia Militar - First Philippine military school

Filipino army officers (under General Juan Cailles)

On the recommendation of General Antonio Luna, General Emilio Aguinaldo authorized the creation of a military school for officers.

On  Oct. 25, 1898, the Academia Militar was established at  Malolos, Bulacan with Colonel Manuel Bernal Sityar, hijo (meaning junior), as Director.

Colonel Sityar (RIGHT) was a Spanish mestizo who had served as a lieutenant in the Spanish Civil Guard.  In 1882, he trained at the Academia Infanteria de Filipinas in Manila. He graduated from the Academia Militar de Toledo in Spain in 1895. He was born on Aug. 20, 1863 in Cavite City of an "Indio" mother and a Spanish father who hailed from Cadiz, Spain. His great grandfather was a lawyer to Spanish King Alfonso. His great grandmother was a relative of Queen Isabela. Both his grandfather and father were Spanish Dukes, and his father was in addition a commodore of the Spanish Navy.

Sityar was the first to suspect the existence of a revolutionary movement. On July 5, 1896, he reported to the Civil Governor of Manila that certain individuals, especially in Mandaluyong and San Juan del Monte, were enlisting men for unknown purposes, making them sign in pledge with their own blood. But his report did not alarm the colonial authorities. Fifty-six days later, on Aug. 30, about 800 Katipuneros assaulted thepolverin (Spanish powder magazine) at San Juan del Monte, igniting the Philippine Revolution. (153 Katipuneros and 2 Spanish soldiers died in this first major battle of the revolution).

1898: A company of Filipino soldiers originally in the Spanish service

Sityar later defected to Aguinaldo's army at San Francisco de Malabon (now General Trias), Cavite on May 28, 1898. He declared, " I have served the country of my father with blood. Now I will serve the country of my mother with blood". Colonel Sityar served as aide-de-camp and assistant chief of staff to General Emilio Aguinaldo. In the Malolos Congress which opened on Sept. 15, 1898, he represented the province of Laguna.

Sityar and his wife accompanied the president of theFirst Republic in his long and arduous trek to northern Luzon, from Nov. 13, 1899 in Bayambang, Pangasinan, until Dec. 25, 1899 in Talubin, Bontoc, Mountain Province; on that Christmas day, Aguinaldo, wishing to spare the 5 women in his entourage from further hardships (Aguinaldo's wife and sister, Sityar's wife and Col. Jose Leyba's 2 sisters) ordered Sityar and a certain Colonel Paez to accompany the women and surrender to the Americans in Talubin. [Colonel Leyba was Aguinaldo's adjutant and secretary].

Aguinaldo and his party reached Palanan, Isabela on Sept. 6, 1900. Here, Aguinaldo was captured by the Americans on March 23, 1901.

After the surrender at Talubin, Sityar quit the military life and taught at the Liceo de Manila when it was founded in 1900. Curiously, in the same year, the Queen Regent of Spain made Manuel Sityar Knight of the Military Order of Maria Cristina.

Sityar was one of the founding members of the pro-American Partido Federal when it was organized on Dec. 23, 1900.

He died in 1927.

1898: Staff officers of General Juan Cailles

1899: Filipino army officers

Group showing General Manuel Tinio (seated, center),  General Benito Natividad (seated, 2nd from right), Lt. Col. Jose Alejandrino (seated, 2nd from left) and their aides-de-camp

A page from The Illustrated London News, issue dated March 17, 1899. Clockwise, from top left: Generals Pantaleon Garcia, Gregorio del Pilar, Tomas Mascardo, and Isidoro Torres.

















Shoulder bars of Philippine army officers. From: "Buhay na Kasaysayan" by Pedro Javier and Yonito Flores

The Academia Militar's  mission was to complete the training of all  officers in the active service. The academy formally opened its classes on Nov. 1, 1898.  The classes were divided into two sections, one for field officers from colonels to majors, and the other from Captains and below. Graduates became regular officers of the army. The course of instruction consisted of current orders and regulations, field and garrison regulations, military justice and penal laws, arithmetic and military accounting, geography and history, field fortifications, and map drawing and reading.

Barasoain Church and Convent. Photo taken on March 31, 1899, shortly after the Americans captured Malolos.

The Academia Militar was housed in the convent of Barasoain together with theUniversidad Literia de Pilipinas and Instituto Burgos.

The Academia was deactivated on Jan. 20, 1899 due to highly escalated tensions between the Filipinos and Americans. Fifteen days later, on February 4, war broke out.

Feb. 6, 1899: US Senate Ratifies Treaty of Paris

President William McKinley controlled all the information coming from the Philippines. On Feb. 6, 1899, after he reported to the American people that the Filipinos had attacked US troops in Manila, the U.S. Senate ratified the Treaty of Paris by one vote more than the necessary two-thirds (57 to 27). The American public tacitly endorsed the ratification by reelecting Mckinley in 1900.

When the treaty was signed on Dec. 10, 1898, it had to be ratified by the U.S. Senate before it could take effect. It, however, met opposition, mainly against the annexation of the Philippines.

An Anti-Imperialist League was formed to rally American public opinion against the annexation. Many League members felt empires were anti-democratic and a violation of the nation's heritage. Some union leaders argued that overseas empire would only feed the overwhelming power of big business.

Some prominent Americans, such as former President Grover Cleveland, the writer Mark Twain and industrialist Andrew Carnegie, also opposed the ratification. The latter even offered to buy the Philippines for US $20 million and give it to the Filipinos so that they could be free; he believed the U.S. should exercise global economic power but avoid annexing colonies.

One of the reasons why the United States should not acquire the Philippines was that the Filipinos themselves were fighting the Americans in the Philippines. Such an act, they said, showed that the Filipinos did not want to be under American rule. They also reasoned that it was inconsistent for the United States to disclaim—through the so-called Teller Amendment—any intention of annexing Cuba and then annex the other Spanish colonies, such as the Philippines.

Attitudes about race divided the anti-imperialists. Some opposed annexation because they did not want a "primitive race" to join the U.S. Others,  including many African Americans, suggested that U.S. talk of "uplifting" the Filipinos was hypocritical; at home, they argued, the U.S. was not even trying to protect the rights of black citizens.

There were also many in the United States who saw the advantages of taking over the Philippines. Many Protestant missionaries, for instance, favored annexation.  They felt the U.S. was duty-bound to educate and "christianize" the islands, not realizing that most Filipinos were already Catholic.

Some people feared that Germany or another European power might get the Philippines if the United States did not. Newspapers had painted the Filipinos as primitive "savages"; consequently, many Americans came to believe they  could not govern themselves or defend themselves against threatening European powers.

There were those who favored annexation to give America a “foothold” in the populous markets of Asia. They pointed to the Philippines' value as a coaling station for U.S. ships; and as a stepping stone for American exporters with an eye on the "Great China Market."

A group of prominent bankers, industrialists and politicians convinced high government officials that the U.S. economy faced stagnation, widespread unemployment and possibly revolution unless moves were made to penetrate Asian markets.

Senator Albert Beveridge observed: "American factories are making more than the American people can use; American soil is producing more than they can consume. Fate has written our policy for us . . . . The Philippines give us a base at the door of all the East . . . . The power that rules the Pacific . . . is the power that rules the world ....The mission of our race [is to control] the trade of the world....and the Philippines logically are our first target."

"Self-government," Senator Beveridge said, "applies only to those who are capable of self-government. We govern the Indians without their consent, we govern our territories without their consent, we govern our children without their consent."

In the 1900 presidential election, the Anti-Imperialist League supported William Jennings Bryan, the Democratic candidate, who opposed the annexation of the Philippines.

[To be sure, Bryan argued for approving the Treaty of Paris ending the war, by which the Spanish would cede Puerto Rico and the Philippines to the United States, saying that the United States should first secure the freedom of the Philippines from Spain and then award them independence when the international situation was more favorable.]

But rising prosperity and patriotic support for U.S. soldiers helped McKinley to victory.

April 11, 1899:  John Hay, Secretary of State, signs the "Memorandum of Ratification" of the Treaty of Paris on behalf of the United States.

May 1, 1899:   John Hay, U.S. Secretary of State, hands to French ambassador Jules Cambon the $20 Million due to Spain under the Treaty of Paris. Photo was taken at the State Department, Washington, D.C.The few American newspapers published in Manila (the first, The American Soldier, began circulating on Sept. 16, 1898) had a common point of view:  "These islands are rich untapped sources of American wealth and capital. The natives, half-devil and half-child, insist on playing government: a group of warlike tribes who will devour each other the moment American troops leave."

On Jan. 23, 1899, the First Philippine Republic, popularly known as the Malolos Republic, was inaugurated amidst colorful ceremonies at the Barasoain Church, Malolos, Bulacan Province. This was also the first republic in Asia. Aguinaldo took his oath of office as President of the Republic. He stated the aspiration of the nation "to live under the democratic regime of the Philippine Republic, free from the yoke of any foreign domination." In conclusion, he declared: "Great is this day, glorious this date, and forever memorable this moment in which our beloved people are raised to the apotheosis of Independence."

To make the event more memorable, Aguinaldo issued a decree granting pardon to all Spanish prisoners of war who were not members of the Spanish regular army and at the same time, granting to Spaniards and other aliens the right to engage in business within the limits of the Republic.

Aguinaldo wore a formal attire with top hat, white gloves, and bow tie and carried a tasseled gold-knobbed cane.

The food at the inaugural banquet was European and the menu written in French.

Filipino Army officers at Barasoain Church, Malolos, Bulacan

Philippine army soldiers at the plaza in Malolos

President Emilio Aguinaldo reviews the troops

The residents of Malolos and guests celebrate the inauguration of the First Philippine Republic


Jose "Sixto" Lopez (LEFT) and Felipe Agoncillo (RIGHT), Philippine ambassadors to the United States. Agoncillo was commissioned as Minister Plenipotentiary to negotiate treaties with foreign governments. PHOTO was taken in 1898.

Meanwhile, in the United States, Ambassador Felipe Agoncillo appealed to the U.S. Senate where the Philippine question was being debated.

The Scranton Tribune, Scranton, Pennsylvania, Jan. 25, 1899 Page 1


The San Francisco Call, issue of Jan. 27, 1899



The San Francisco Call, issue of Jan. 29, 1899


Agoncillo wrote a memorial addressed to the US Senators on January 30, reminding them to follow the precedents of their own country of recognizing the right of all nations to be free and to create and reform their own political institutions.

Juan Luna (LEFT), the Filipino painter, and Felipe Agoncillo (RIGHT) visiting Ferdinand Blumentritt, the Austrian teacher, historian, and ethnologist and close friend of the Philippine national hero Jose Rizal, at Litomerice, Austria-Hungary, in 1899. [Litomerice is now a part of the Czech Republic].

[When the Philippine-American War broke out on Feb. 4, 1899, which affected the decision of the US Senate to ratify the Paris peace treaty that ceded the Philippines to the Americans, Agoncillo moved to Canada. From there, he sailed to London, where he resumed his diplomatic activities and continued bringing into public knowledge about the newly born Filipino nation in the Far East that was struggling from American domination. When his funds ran out, he sold his wife's jewelry and resumed his work.]

Capitol of the First Philippine Republic at Malolos. Photo taken in 1899.

A bank note issued by the First Philippine Republic on April 21, 1899. The symbol used for the Peso was the same as for the US dollar.

The Voice of the Philippine Revolution (1899). In the wake of Commo. George Dewey's destruction of Spain's Pacific Fleet in Manila Bay on May 1, 1898, Emilio Aguinaldo declared the independence of the Philippines on June 12, 1898. El Heraldo de la Revolución began semiweekly publication in September, continuing until fighting broke out between the Americans and Filipino forces on February 4, 1899

Original caption:  "A Waterway of Aguinaldo's Capital, Malolos, Philippine Islands".  Photo was taken in 1898.

[Description from commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:School_Begins:

Caricature showing Uncle Sam lecturing four children labelled Philippines (who appears similar to Philippine leader Emilio Aguinaldo), Hawaii, Porto Rico and Cuba in front of children holding books labelled with various U.S. states. In the background are an American Indian holding a book upside down, a Chinese boy at door, and a black boy cleaning a window. Originally published on p. 8-9 of the January 25, 1899 issue of Puck magazine.

Caption: "School Begins. Uncle Sam (to his new class in Civilization): Now, children, you've got to learn these lessons whether you want to or not! But just take a look at the class ahead of you, and remember that, in a little while, you will feel as glad to be here as they are!"

Blackboard: The consent of the governed is a good thing in theory, but very rare in fact. — England has governed her colonies whether they consented or not. By not waiting for their consent she has greatly advanced the world's civilization. — The U.S. must govern its new territories with or without their consent until they can govern themselves.

Poster: The Confederated States refused their consent to be governed, but the Union was preserved without their consent.

Book: U.S. — First Lessons in Self Government

Note: (on table) The new class — Philippines Cuba Hawaii Porto Rico]

Issue of Feb. 3, 1899

First Shot of the War, Feb. 4, 1899

San Juan Bridge: Contrary to popular belief that prevailed for over a century, the first shot of the Philippine-American War was not fired on this bridge but on Sociego Street in Santa Mesa district, Manila. The Philippines' National Historical Institute (NHI) recognized this fact through Board Resolution 7 Series of 2003. On Feb. 4, 2004 the marker on the bridge was removed and transferred to a site at the corner of Sociego and Silencio streets.

Filipino outpost at the San Juan Bridge

Feb. 2, 1899:  Col. Luciano San Miguel, Philippine army, conferring with Col. John M. Stotsenburg, commander of the 1st Nebraskans, at San Juan del Monte-Santa Mesa. Both men died in combat: Stotsenburg fell at Quingua, Bulacan Province on April 23, 1899, while San Miguel was killed on March 27, 1903, at Corral-na-Bato, Marikina, Rizal Province. President Theodore Roosevelt officially closed the war on July 4, 1902 but San Miguel held out until his death.

Company D, 1st Nebraska Volunteer Infantry Regiment. Photo was taken in March 1899.

On Saturday night, Feb. 4, 1899, Privates William W. Grayson and Orville H. Miller of   Company D, 1st Nebraska Volunteers, while doing sentry duty, encountered 3 Filipino soldiers on Sociego Street in Santa Mesa, Manila, between Blockhouse 7 (Manila City boundary) and Barrio Santol (Sampaloc district).

Pvt. William W. Grayson (1876-1941):  The Englishman who fired the shot that ignited the Philippine-American War. He acquired U.S. citizenship only in 1900. Previous to serving in the Philippines, he was an immigrant and a hotel worker. Upon his return to the United States from the Philippines, Grayson settled in San Francisco, California  and got married in October 1899. He worked as a house painter or an undertaker.

Corner of Sociego and Silencio streets, Santa Mesa District, Manila. The National Historical Institute placed two plaques (in English and in Filipino) marking this spot as the scene of the first shot that sparked the Philippine-American War. The plaque in English states: "Here at 9:00 in the evening of February 4th, 1899, Private William Grayson of the First Nebraska Volunteers fired the shot that started the Filipino-American War.”

Pvt. William W. Grayson, standing on the spot where he fired the shot that started the Philippine-American War.

Pvt. William W. Grayson, standing on the spot where he fired the shot that started the Philippine-American War.

Grayson said: "About eight o'clock, Miller and I were cautiously pacing our district. We came to a fence and were trying to see what the Filipinos were up to. Suddenly, near at hand, on our left, there was a low but unmistakable Filipino outpost signal whistle. It was immediately answered by a similar whistle about twenty-five yards to the right. Then a red lantern flashed a signal from blockhouse number 7. We had never seen such a sign used before.

"In a moment, something rose up slowly in front of us. It was a Filipino. I yelled 'Halt!' and made it pretty loud, for I was accustomed to challenging the officer of the guard in approved military style. I challenged him with another loud 'halt!' Then he shouted 'halto!' to me. Well, I thought the best thing to do was to shoot him. He dropped. If I didn't kill him, I guess he died of fright.

"Two Filipinos sprang out of the gateway about 15 feet from us. I called 'halt!' and Miller fired and dropped one. I saw that another was left. Well, I think I got my second Filipino that time...."  [LEFT, front-page report in the Freedom, Feb. 16, 1899, published in Manila by the US Army].

The name of the first Filipino fatality of the war was Corporal Anastacio Felix of the 4th Company, Morong Battalion under Captain Serapio Narvaez. The battalion commander was Col. Luciano San Miguel.

Pvt. William W. Grayson:  Photo was taken near Blockhouse No. 7 on the spot where he fired the first shot.

As they ran back to their post, Grayson shouted, "Line up fellows, the niggers are in here all through these yards."

Filipino troops at San Juan del Monte exchanged fire with the American line at Sta. Mesa. The companies of the Morong Battalion under Captain Narvaez and Captain Vicente Ramos charged the American positions and pushed back Grayson’s unit and even captured an American artillery piece. "By 10 o'clock at night," said American historian James LeRoy "the American troops were engaged for two miles from Pasig river north and west."

Many of the Filipino commanders were on weekend furlough.  General Antonio Luna, commanding general of the Philippine Army, visited his family in San Fernando, Pampanga Province. Gen. Mariano Noriel was in Parañaque making preparations for his wedding. General Artemio Ricarte and Col. Luciano San Miguel, commanding officers of the troops in San Juan and Santa Mesa, were at Malolos meeting with Pres. Emilio Aguinaldo. They stayed the night in Malolos, at the house of Tomas Guison.

Many others were similarly indisposed. The Filipino soldiers were for the most part leaderless.

General Pantaleon Garcia (LEFT) was the only one who was at his post in Maypajo, north of Manila (he was captured by the Americans in Jaen, Nueva Ecija Province on May  6, 1900).

On the American side that same night, Maj. Gen. Elwell Otis and Brig. Gen. Robert Hughes were playing billiards, Maj. Gen. Arthur MacArthur, Jr., and his staff were playing cards and most senior officers were absent from their commands; the officers of the 1st Colorado Volunteers were in dress whites playing whist.

Near Intramuros, several hundred 1st California Volunteers and civilians were enjoying themselves at a circus. When firing commenced and the alarm spread, an excitable orderly rushed in and between gasps howled the soldiers to quarters. The men rushed over the flimsy structures through the rings, the civilians followed suit, and clowns and trained horses were forgotten in the general rush to the doors. A number of officers were present who attempted to restore order, but the delay cost them their carriages; for when they reached the street they found their horses had been taken by soldiers in their anxiety to get to barracks.

The strength of the US Eight Army Corps as of February 4 was 20,851 (819 commis- sioned officers and 20,032 enlisted men).  Out of this number, 2,415 officers and enlisted men were assigned in Cavite and Iloilo harbor.

After subtracting further the sick, those serving in the civil departments and those belonging strictly to and doing duty in the staff organizations, the effective combat strength of the Corps in Manila was about 14,000. 

1899: US troops battling Filipinos. Location not specified.

At daybreak of February 5, the reinforced Americans counterattacked and retook their original positions. Soon after, firing broke out across the 16-mile Filipino and American lines involving 15,000 Filipinos and 14,000 Americans (3,000 of whom were assigned to provost or police duty in Manila). Admiral George Dewey's navy artillery pounded the Filipino positions.

General Hughes sent his Provost Guard out in the streets, blocking off thoroughfares, dispersing crowds, and keeping a close watch on suspected neighborhoods.

Feb. 5, 1899:  A view of the church at San Miguel district, Manila, and a group of Filipino POWs.

Large numbers of suspected "insurgents" were arrested; Hughes grimly noted that "when the police company got through with them the undertaker had enough business for the day."

Aguinaldo tried to stop the war by sending  Gen. Carlos Mario de la Torres to Maj. Gen Elwell S. Otis, commander of the US Eight Army Corps, to propose peace talks and a demilitarized zone. But Otis responded, "fighting, having begun, must go on to the grim end."

An American newspaper in Manila, published by the U.S. Army. The newspaper was founded on Dec. 13, 1898. This issue came out on the fateful day of Feb. 4, 1899.

Battle of Manila, Feb. 5-6, 1899

The church at La Loma ("The Hill") in 1899

Brig. Gen. Arthur C. MacArthur, Jr., commander of the 2nd Division, Eight Corps,  attacked the Filipinos in the north and captured La Loma, on the Santa Mesa Ridge overlooking Manila, on February 5. [Santa Mesa Ridge is now known as Santa Mesa Heights in Quezon City]. After capturing the blockhouses, he seized their fortified strongpoints at the Chinese hospital and cemetery and La Loma Church. (La Loma is now a part of Quezon City).

Major Jose Torres Bugallon (RIGHT, image) defended La Loma. He was born on Aug. 28, 1873, in Salasa (now Bugallon), Pangasinan Province. He earned a Bachelor of Arts degree at the Colegio de San Juan de Letranin 1889 with high scholastic ratings. In 1892, he went abroad as a pensionado of the Spanish government to the world-famedAcademia Militar de Toledo in Spain. He graduated in 1896 and commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant in the 70th Infantry Regiment of the Spanish Army. He fought several battles against Filipino revolutionaries and after the Battle of Talisay on May 30, 1897, he was promoted to Captain. He was also awarded the coveted Cross of Maria Cristina and the Red Cross for Military Honor (Cruz Roja del Merito Militar). After the Treaty of Paris on Dec.10, 1898 ended the Spanish American war, Bugallon joined Gen. Antonio Luna's staff as aide-de-camp and recruitment officer for Spanish war veterans. At that time, General Luna urgently needed instructors for the training of officers at the Academia Militar in Malolos, Bulacan.

A gun of the Utah Volunteer Light Artillery is sighted before the advance on La Loma.   Cpl. Noble McDonnel, Utah Battery A:  "The enemy numbered thousands and had courage, but could not shoot straight... If these natives could shoot as accurately as the Spanish, they would have exterminated us."

US artillery in action at Battle of La Loma

Capt. Frank A. Grant's battery shelling Filipino trenches at or near the Chinese hospital at La Loma.

Filipino soldiers killed on La Loma Hill by the 10th Pennsylvania Volunteers. The Filipinos fought from behind earthworks, barbed wire, and cemetery headstones.

10th Pennsylvania Volunteers ambulance at La Loma

Upon learning from Lt. Colonel Queri, that Bugallon was wounded, General Luna ordered: "He must be saved at all costs. Bugallon is worth 500 Filipino soldiers. He is one of my hopes for future victory." Too weak to keep his strength any longer due to profuse bleeding, he died on the breast of Gen. Antonio Luna, a few hours after he was withdrawn from the battlefield. General Luna wept unashamedly before the lifeless body of his aide-de-camp. To perpetuate his memory, a law sponsored in 1921 by Congressman Mauro Navarro of Pangasinan changed the name of Salasa to Bugallon. His remains now lie inside the Sampaloc Church in Manila.

Feb. 5, 1899: Battery A of the Utah Volunteer Light Artillery on McCloud Hill, Santa Mesa district, Manila, shelling Filipino positions in the San Juan Bridge area (Santa Mesa and San Juan del Monte). A soldier was killed near this gun a few minutes after the photo was taken.

Feb. 5, 1899: 1st Nebraska Volunteers battling the Filipinos in the San Juan del Monte-Santa Mesa area.  Sgt. Arthur H. Vickers, 1st Nebraska Regiment:  "I am not afraid, and am always ready to do my duty, but I would like some one to tell me what we are fighting for."