Diary of John E.T. Milsaps

Saturday, January 28th, 1899

Camp Santa Mesa, Luzon Island –Entry made in parlor of No. 2 Calle Santa Elena, Manila.

Cloudy and cool with a breeze that reminded of the fall in the temperate zone.

Quite busy. Made 3 trips away from home. After prayer, bible reading & breakfast, went down town with Private Berry of the Montana troops. Called at the post office & received 2 letters (1) Ly-Col. Wm Evans –answering mine re Commandant H. Booth’s notifying me that I am poaching on his territory. E. said he would write New York about the transfer. Thought New York would agree because of the distance from America. (2) Mrs. Elizabeth Swift Brengle. Answering my letter & explaining the “Acquiantance” League. Enclosed me a card to sign.

Out at the 2d & 3d Battalion I called on a soldier photographer. He developed 2 films for me but had no pictures printed. I purchased 3 at the Imperial gallery for prospective stereopticon views.

To Private Geo. Berry I gave 30 War Crys for distribution in the 1st Battalion, Montana Vols. viz., 10 each of Nos., 575, 576 and 577.

Private M.L. Devine (Landon) of K. battery 3d artillery, took all the Chinese War Crys and went forth to sell them to the “Chinos”. Disposed of copies.

Visitors 6.

Went down on the Escolta late in the afternoon & got a shave in a Spanish barbershop.

Cooked supper. After partaking thereof hired a quilez which gave Private Clayton Scott & I a four mile lift out to Camp Santa Mesa and back home. Brother Gilbert & Holding had made such arrangements as were deemed necessary. We arrived early but found the tent lighted with hanging lanterns. Gilbert started with a praise service & then turned the meeting over to me. The soldiers filled the bamboo seats, occupying the tent to its capacity. Audience about 70. A fine lot of Christian boys grace the Nebraska regiment with their presence. Scott testified & gave us a solo. Others testified. Chaplain Mailic came in but slipped out while we were at prayer. Three men raised their hands for prayer; glory be to God who moveth upon the hearts of the dead. After service shook hands with a number of the men. Several invited us to come again. We got into the quilez & was about to drive home when Chaplain Mailic called me to one side in the dark. Was hot. Called my attention to what he advised me Thursday –not to come out. Felt hurt because I came in opposition to his wishes. All arrangements should be made thro’ him. Requested me not to come again unless he wanted me to come. I explained but he refused to accept it. If Chaplain Mailic would do his duty the assistance of outsiders would not be necessary to the degree that we now find necessary. Because he intended to make the present strained relations with the Filipinos an excuse to discontinuing religious services I felt it a duty to step into the gap. Of course such action is a reflection on him, but he should be a leader of all agressive efforts on soul-saving lines.

Prayed with several comrades who called at No. 2.

Mr. Chamberlain of Cavite, a civilian who is awaiting an opportunity to prospect the interior for gold and other metals, called to see me this afternoon. He inquired the price of a room. I gave him no decisive answer because I have not been anxious to secure lodgers. It is a dangerous undertaking at present to cross the Insurgent’s lines; they are bitter against Americans & refuse to grant them favors any more.