Diary of John E.T. Milsaps

Monday, Jan. 9th, 1899

Cavite, Luzon Island –Entry made in parlor of No. 2 Calle Santa Elena, Tondo.

Cloudy, cool day – i.e. cool for Manila. Out of bed early. Cooked breakfast & hurried away without washing dishes. Took ferry boat for Cavite. Fare there & return 40 cts Mex. Met on the boat Mr. Chamberlain of California & Wm Harper. Ex-Sergeant of K. battery 3d artillery. Had quite a long conversation. In Cavite I visited the arsenal & fort at the point & the ice factory. At latter place learned that Private Maloney, engineer, who claimed to get his backslidings healed in one of our meetings in Manila, was no longer there. Went to Iloilo under guard (disobedience to orders) with the 6th artillery.

Accompanied Chamberlain to Mr. W. Silvers restaurant on Calle Real. C. treated me to dinner. Silver had no men to work for him in his restaurant. All his Filipino cooks and waiters slipped off & left him; took French leave; Silver thinks to join the Insurrectos. There has been much of this thing lately. On every side signs are multiplying that we are on the eve of a war with the Filipinos. An attack is expected tonight. I fear the Insurrectos do not realize the terrible consequences to themselves of the step they are taking tonight. i.e. if they start tonight.

In Cavite with Mr. Chamberlain I went outside the wall to take a look at the situation. Our forces have barricade of barrels across the causeway which leads to San Roque, with a sloping bank of dirt towards the latter town. A barbed wine fence is also there but is lying on the ground ready to be erected at a moment’s notice. I could see at the San Roque side of causeway Filipino soldiers, in the iron roofed brick building used by them for a barrack. Lying on the ground with arms stacked near them was a squad of U.S. soldiers on the last side of the round concrete bastion which terminates the wall near the ferry landing. They are ready for action.

A Filipino major was arrested in Cavite last night but turned loose today. Filipinos sent word to Silver that they will kill him and his wife (a Filipino woman) & rob his house. He went out to notify the military authorities. I had a talk with Capt. Geary of 1st Cal. Heavy Artillery & Provost Marshall. Said he read my War Cry articles re the Philippines. Was quite friendly & invited me to come & see him.

Purchased see shells for my collections. Took Kodak. My pictures left with the Tennessee bandsmen are not ready.

On return to Manila by the M. Nunez I saw tug boats pulling cascos back to land loaded with 1st California Vol. Infantry. They have been lying in the bay on several steamships about 5 days.

After supper Private Clayton Scott gave me $6 Mex. donation –his own. Also turned over to me $29.40 Mex which he collected for me from 1st North Dakota vol. Mrs. Owens likewise gave me $3 U.S. coin. Left for me by Warren of U.S. army. Praise God. I don’t know the number of visitors today.