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December 5, 1899

Vigan is the second city in size on the Island of Luzon. It is situated in the NW part of the island about four miles from the sea, on a small and unnavigable river called the Abra, which is also the name of the province. The seaport city is named Cavayan and is inhabited entirely by natives. About two weeks ago the battalion from the U.S.S. Oregon landed at Cavayan and marched to Vigan. Upon approaching the city a band met the battalion and escorted it to the plaza, the natives welcoming the “Americanos” with open arms. The Oregon’s sailors and marines occupied the place until relieved by a battalion of 33d U.S. Volunteer Infantry composed of about 250
men. The troops policed the city, and General Young,28 the Senior Army Officer, in this neighborhood, decided to make Vigan a base of supplies; so stores and provisions were brought there and stowed in one of the buildings facing on the plaza.

That part of the Insurgent Army in the province of Abra are in need of food and supplies, so hearing of those held by the army, decided to make a bold attack on the city and capture them. The night of the Newark’s arrival (December 4th), the attack was made. The Insurgents succeeded in occupying the Government building at the west end of the plaza, but after a sharp engagement were forced to leave it, several of their number being killed and wounded. They all crossed the river before day light.