December 8, 2018

Part IV: US Military Operations in Batangas from 1901-02 during the Fil-American War

Image source: Sandra Plummer Collection of the Forth Worth Digital Library.  Colorized courtesy of Algorithmia.
Image source: Sandra Plummer Collection of the Forth Worth Digital Library.  Colorized courtesy of Algorithmia.
[In this article: Philippine-American War, US Army in the Philippines, US Volunteers, American military operations in Batangas, Fil-Am War in Batangas, Lipa Batangas, Nasugbu Batangas, Batangas City Batangas, Taysan Batangas, San Luis Batangas]
This is the fourth installment of a series of articles providing details of the Philippine-American War – at least from the American point of view – as it was fought in Batangas from 1901 to 1902. The details of these operational actions of the United States Army are taken from annual report1 of the United States War Department published in 1902.

The details are presented in snippets and arranged in chronological order. Readers who might have missed the earlier installments may see these archived under the Fil-American War section of the main menu at the top of this page.

7 December 1901
  • The United States Army suffer personnel loss in an encounter with Filipino rebels in Lobo. Sergeant Carl M. Secrest, Corporal W. B. McGeary, both of Company L of the 20th Infantry, were both killed, along with one member of the Macabebe Scouts. Private C. H. Huff of the same group was mortally wounded and would succumb the following day. On the side of the rebels, one Filipino fighter and one Negro2 were killed.
  • Included in the report was an item about the Chief of Police of Bauan capturing one lieutenant and three ladrones (thieves), as the Americans sometimes referred to the Filipino rebels in the report. However, the item also stated that Bauan was “in the island of Marinduque.” Batangas History cannot find any references to such a place in Marinduque, so it is possible that what the writer really meant was Bauan in Batangas or Bauan was actually a typographical error that should have been Boac.

8 December 1901
American troops were fired upon by Filipino rebels in Lipa and Alaminos. They gave chase until the rebels were forced to scatter. Fortuitously, there were no casualties.

11 December 1901
  • Northeast of Lipa, a group of some 40 Ilocano Scouts, part of the 7th Company of Native (i.e. Filipino) Scouts, led by 2nd Lieutenant Frederick B. Hennessy of the United States Army Artillery Corps, captured a rebel captain along with 2 Mausers (a German-made gun3), 1 Remington (an American-made gun, probably a rifle4), 7 war bolos and important papers.
  • Near Calaca, a group of some 40 men under the command of 1st Lieutenant Beverly A Read of the 6th Cavalry engaged Filipino rebels in a running gun battle for about two miles. There were no casualties.

12 December 1901
  • A 2nd Lieutenant of the Filipino rebels along with one sergeant surrendered to Captain John D. L. Hartman of the 1st Cavalry in Bauan.
  • At the Lipa Mountains (likely Mount Malepunyo), the forces of Filipino rebel Major Mariano Ilabres, numbering 42 men, were surprised and captured by a group of one American scout and 6 men of the 17th Company of Ilocano Scouts under the command of 2nd Lieutenant Frederick B. Hennessy. Also capture were 21 rifles, Mausers and Remingtons along with 40 rounds of ammunition for each gun. Not a single shot was fired.
  • In Taysan, American scouts under the command of one 1st Lieutenant William F. Fassett of the 21st Infantry got embroiled for several hours in a running battle with Filipino rebels. A Corporal C. H. C. Bleach of Company G of the 21st Infantry was killed, while one from the 7th Company of Macabebe Scouts was wounded.

16 December 1901
  • Some 90 men of the 4th and 28th Infantry commanded by one Captain Guy H. B. Smith of the 4th Infantry struck Filipino rebels in Looc – most likely in Nasugbu – and killing three of them. There were no casualties on the American side.
  • 30 men under the command of 1st Lieutenant George V. H. Mosely of the 1st Cavalry encountered Filipino rebels numbering 125, including 30 armed with rifles, at barrio San Isidro 4 miles outside of Batangas town. The rebels fled after the encounter, leaving 7 dead behind. They were also seen trying to carry with them more dead and wounded. There were no casualties in the American side.
  • In the afternoon of the same day, 30 men of 21st Infantry, commanded by one 1st Lieutenant William M. Fassett, had an encounter with a group of rebels in barrio Colod (likely Gulod in Batangas town). There were 15 men armed with rifles in this group. The rest, around 75, were armed with bolos. Beaten, the rebels fled the scene, leaving 3 of their dead comrades behind.
  • East of Batangas town, American scouts under the command of 1st Lieutenant James D. Tilford of the 1st Cavalry chanced upon a band of Filipino rebels and killed two of them. There were no casualties on the part of the Americans.

17 December
In San Luis, Macabebe Scouts commanded by 2nd Lieutenant Albert U. Faulkner struck a group of some 20 Filipino rebels near barrio Sampa5. One of the rebels along with one Remington rifle were captured. There were no casualties, presumably on either side.

18 December
  • Filipino rebels Captain Benito Nagbao, 1st Lieutenant Cecilio Castillo, one sergeant and two privates all belonging to the Santa Cruz Battalion surrendered to the Americans in Bauan.
  • In Batangas town, the Municipal police captured two Filipino rebels.
  • American soldiers commanded by one 2nd Lieutenant Horace N. Munro of the 1st Cavalry captured 2 rebels and some important papers in a barrio Liplo (probably barrio Libjo of Batangas town)

20 December 1901
  • Soldiers from Troop K of the 1st Cavalry under the command of Captain John D. L. Hartman, operating from Bauan, located and destroyed six cuartels (or barracks) belonging to the Filipino rebels near Point Pagalanit (likely Bagalangit in present-day Mabini).
  • Some 10 miles east of Taysan, some 30 men of the 7th Company of Macabebe Scouts commanded by 1st Lieutenant Robert E. Brooks engaged Filipino rebels under the command of one Captain Barcelino. Six rebels were killed, including one officer. Captured were one Remington rifle along with 50 rounds of ammunition as well as 17 bolos. The Americans destroyed the rebele’s barracks, where three tons of rice were stored. There were no casualties in the American side.

TO BE CONTINUED…

Notes and references:
1Annual Reports of the War Department for the Fiscal Year Ended June 30, 1902,” report of the Lieutenant-General Commanding the Army and Department Commanders, published 1902 in the United States, online at HathiTrust.
2 It was not made clear in the report who the “Negro” was. However, there are records of deserters from the American side who fought with the Filipino rebels.
3Mauser,” Wikipedia.
4Remington Arms,” Wikipedia.
5 In the present day, barrio Sampa is part of the town of Santa Teresita instead of San Luis.

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