Diary of Francis Burton Harrison

December 26, 1935

Left at 7:15 a.m. alone in the motor for Baguio –arrived at 12:15 without hurry– 263 kilometers. Roads as far as Tarlac excellent with a fine new bridge on entering the province of Pangasinan. Roads in Tarlac are chiefly surfaced with gravel, and are very dusty, as is the approach to the entrance gate of Benguet (Kennon) Cañon road. Benguet road itself is badly worn on surface, tho’ each motor pays at least two pesos for entrance. Country through all the “rice provinces” is one continuous cultivation in rice and sugar, until nearing Camp One. Lots of motor busses of Pampanga and Pangasinan Transportation Companies. Signs are in English everywhere in place of the former Spanish. Baguio itself is like a “boom town” with discordant red roofs. Igorrotes are no longer much in evidence. Stores are run by slippery Chinese and equally slick lowland Filipinos –prices much higher than in Manila, and Baguio has every evidence of being a mining boom town. Saw Pascual Pacis and refused a reception in the town hall.

Doria arrived at 7:30 p.m. “all in” after a twelve hour trip from Mt. Data via Cervantes. Dangerous driving these cliff roads. They saw one motor bus which had fallen off a cliff and had caught on a pine tree –the nine passengers in it were uninjured tho the bus was suspended upside-down.

2 Responses to “December 26, 1935”

  1. rene bajit

    it’s nice to go through the avenues of history…. imagining our early leaders trek to the mountains and cities before they were cities. imagine the greenfields on both sides of the road all througout the drive from tarlac to benguet at the gateway to benguet (boundary with rosario, la union) i can imagine the dusty ride amidst the deep ravines, but swept along by the billowing of the trees which were thick and dark covering the mountains.. imagine how it was with all the mountains dark with forest and pine trees, only spotted with a few huts and houses of the rich. but imagine the resolve of our ancestors to cut a strip in the mountains to allow passage, as far as cervantes connecting the ilocos. landscapes change as development comes in, but is it really toward progress?