Diary of John E.T. Milsaps

Thursday, February 16, 1899

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

Cloudy but no rain; quite warm. We appear to be over a seething volcano here in Manila, and it is raging within its suppressed confines. The iron hand of military power is keeping the Filipinos of this city in check. They would murder us if they could. Last night over 100 daggers were captured near our house. We live in Tondo –one of Manila’s worst quarters & today more arrests were made of natives who are plotting to rise. The streets look deserted , business is to a large extent suspended and conditions are extremely unsatisfactory. The Filipino fruit peddlers & peddlers of almost everything else, lately so numerous have almost completely disappeared. One’s life is not safe in Manila now, save when under the providential care of God.

Went to the post office. Returning met Mr. Isaac Russell late of the Utah light artillery & late proprietor of the “American Soldier” now suspended. Russell’s head is bandaged. Was attacked by Filipinos and slashed in the head with a knife. Shot 2 or 3 of them. It is difficult to correctly appreciate the present state of affairs. I saw about 30 natives going thro’ the streets under guard. Great columns of smoke rose from the Malate quarter of the country. Probably burning houses. Some shooting is going on out at Malibon [Malabon], but the Americans are playing for time to give reinforcements an opportunity to arrive before engaging the Insurrectos again seriously.

Am tired & sleepy tonight. Rested but little last night.

Vistors 3.

Private Green of the Utah light artillery, B. Battery, Section 5, came in with his gun & accoutrements. Borrowed of me $1. Mex. which makes $3. Mex. loaned him by me.

Señora Ysabel Wood sent her youngest son up stairs to collect rent for the upper floor of No. 2 Calle Santa Elena. I paid him $35. Mex. month of February.

Wrote a letter & copied it, to Commander & Consul Booth-Tucker thanking them for the gift of the Christmas Souvenir book, with short biography of the Consul.

Mailed it, also several other letters written yesterday. Started the day with Bible reading & prayer as usual. Cooked breakfast & supper of ham, oatmeal mush, cocoa & chocolate. Partook of cold dinner.. Washed dishes. Read larger part of Com. Booth-Tucker’s life of Gen. Booth. Pasted personal scraps in  my Scrap Book.