Diary of Simeon Villa

November 13, 1899

We left Bayambang by night in a special train for Calasiao, and here we disembarked. The honorable president was accompanied by the secretaries of the interior, treasury, and foreign affairs, and by General Concepcion and aides; Colonel Leyba, Lieutenant-Colonels Topasio and Quesada; Majors Tirona and Jeciel, and Colonel Sytiar, of the staff; the governor of Pangasinan, Barcelona, Villa, and others; the Cavite battalion and one company of artillery. The honorable president’s wife, his sister and mother, the sisters and mother of Señor Leyba, and the wife of Colonel Sytiar were also with the party.

It was 12 o’clock at night, and we were all assembled in the plaza of the church at Calasiao. At about 1 o’clock a.m. we resumed the march for Santa Barbara. The mud was terrible, reaching up to the knees. We made a forced march and succeeded in reaching this town at 8 o’clock a.m. and continued the journey. In this town our forces were joined by the “Mixed” battalion under command of Lieutenant-Colonel Joven, and by General Pilars brigade, commanded by the general himself. So our column was now composed of more than 1,200 armed men. We continued our journey toward the extensive forest of Manaoag, and reached it at dawn. After everybody had breakfasted the honorable president ordered that our forces be divided into two columns, one to serve as a vanguard under the command of General Pilar himself, and the other to form the rear guard commanded by Colonel Montenegro.

The honorable president, his wife and sister, the two sisters of Señor Leyba, Colonel Sytiar and wife, General Concepcion and adjutant, Majors Tirona and Jeciel, the governor of Pangasinan, Barcelona, and Villa all accompanied the vanguard. Some 250 troops composed the vanguard.

With the rear guard were the honorable president’s mother and son, Colonel Leyba and mother, and Lieutenant-Colonel Joven and his batallion.