1906 Report of the Governor of the Province of Batangas to the Governor-General of the Philippines - Batangas History, Culture and Folklore 1906 Report of the Governor of the Province of Batangas to the Governor-General of the Philippines - Batangas History, Culture and Folklore

1906 Report of the Governor of the Province of Batangas to the Governor-General of the Philippines

This page contains the 1906 report of Batangas Governor Jose Losada to Henry Clay Ide, American Governor-General at this time of the Philippine Islands. The report is one of the attachments to the third major part of the 1906 Report of the Philippine Commission Part I, which contains the Report of the Governor-General.

While the source PDF document had OCR (optical character recognition) properties, not all the text could be extracted accurately. Thus, large parts of this report had to be manually transcribed for the purposes of accuracy. The pages given in this page are as they appear in the original document, done for the benefit of researchers who may need these for citation purposes.

U.S. Army officers in front of the Governor's Building in 1900.
U.S. Army officers in front of the Governor's Building in 1900.  Image digitally extracted from the 1990 publication “The Life and Times of Dennis E. Nolan.”


[p. 193]

Report of the Governor of Batangas Province.

Office of the Governor, Province of Batangas.
Batangas, July 14, 1906.
SIR: In compliance with the provisions of act No. 1044 of the Philippine Commission, I have the honor to forward the following annual report for the fiscal year ending June 30, 1906. During the short period of five months that I have been at the head of this provincial government, I have had little opportunity to speak of the conditions therein prevailing, and will now have to avail myself of information compiled before my term began and that furnished by the different departments of the provincial government. In accordance with the plan for this report, furnished by the honorable the executive secretary in his circular letter of June 9, I shall begin by speaking of the agriculture of this province.

I have just returned from one of my regular visits of inspection through the province, as a result of which I have observed that there is relative prosperity with regard to the condition of agriculture. Considering that the rinderpest, though not as intense as in past times, still continues its work of destruction among our cattle, our agricultural production may be considered quite prosperous, especially that which necessarily entails the use of animals. The principal cause of that prosperity, however, is due to the manual labor of the inhabitants.

As the coffee tree has been entirely exterminated and there is no hope of reviving that important source of revenue in this province, notwithstanding the experiments made at Lipa by the department of agriculture, the inhabitants of the coffee-growing region have enthusiastically taken up the cultivation of hemp. I trust that within five years, when this important crop shall have been extended, it may replace the loss of the coffee plantations and of the revenues derived therefrom.

The production of rice, which forms the basis of the food of the people, has been increased, but not to the extent of meeting the necessities of the inhabitants of the province, for though this crop has doubled and even trebled in some pueblos, in others, it has been the same as last year, so that it can be estimated that with the help of corn, the yield of both crops is sufficient to furnish the inhabitants with scarcely eight months' food, it being therefore necessary to import from Manila and from Tayabas the amount necessary for the balance of the year.

The production of sugar continues to be in a state of decline, principally owing to the lack of work animals, it being scarcely worth while mentioning the exportation of this article which, compared with prosperous years, reaches an insignificant figure. However, its cultivation is yearly increasing in the pueblos of Balayan and San Juan de Bocboc; as regards Nasugbu, where the Roxas estate is located, large plantations have been set out this year and some of the steam mills have been repaired, the capital having been furnished by the house of Roxas.

Oranges are grown in the pueblos of Tanauan and Santo Tomas, being one of the principal products, and it is no exaggeration to say that the last crop brought some ₱80,000. This crop has the advantage of being, like coffee, perennial, as it lasts from fifty to sixty years without being subject to the contingencies of other plantations, such as coffee, sugarcane, and rice. Moreover, the trees begin to bear seven years after planting. When this province is crossed by a railway line, the orange crop will tend to increase. As it is now, those pueblos that are not easy of access are unable to cultivate the orange, owing to the perishable quality of the fruit preventing its reaching market before becoming unserviceable for consumption.

There are other products of small importance which are not worthy of mention. Garlic, however, among these minor products, pays well for its cultivation, it being estimated that in Tanauan, the crop is annually worth from ₱8,000 to ₱10,000. No locusts have appeared in this province since last year, and now that the rice sowing has been completed throughout the province and great hopes are entertained for an abundant crop next October, there is not the least indication of that insect plague.

[p. 194]


This province is essentially an agricultural one, as it always was during the time of its greatest splendor; in fact, it can be said that all of its sources of wealth emanated from husbandry. There are but few industries, two only being worthy of mention, and they are more or less dependent upon agriculture — hog raising and poultry — both hogs and chickens being shipped weekly during the entire year to Manila. The raising of hogs is an important industry only in the pueblos of Calaca and Rosario, the first shipping from ₱10,000 to ₱12,000 worth and the latter from ₱12,000 to ₱15,000 worth each year. As regards poultry and eggs, it is no exaggeration to say that the weekly shipments from the ports of Bauan and Batangas to Manila amount to ₱300 — that is to say, ₱2,000 per month, or ₱24,000 per year, in round numbers. Another important industry of the province is the weaving of abaca and jusi textiles, Bauan and Lipa being the principal centers of production, shipping not only to Manila, but also to other provinces. The quality of these textiles is constantly improving, though primitive looms are still in use, no modern looms or textile factory being yet in existence, all the weaving being carried on as a household industry.

With respect to factories, if sugar mills can so be called, there are a few not worthy of mention, on account of the scarcity of their production. There is not a single factory in the province which ships its goods abroad on a large scale, there being but a few machines for hulling rice and shelling and grinding corn, destined exclusively to supply the local demand. There are three such machines in Lipa, one in Batangas, and another in Tanauan. It is probable that their number will increase this year after the harvest, the people having become convinced of their utility and economy in comparison with the old methods of rice hulling by hand, rice being the principal food of the inhabitants.

economic condition.
Judging by the figures before me, the condition of the provincial treasury is by no means prosperous, for, according to acts 470 and 698, the province owes ₱50,000, for a loan raised for general purposes and for roads and bridges. Owing to the precarious condition of the province, the taxes of which it has been impossible to collect as punctually as would be desired, the amounts owing and which should have been paid in the years 1904 and 1905, have not been liquidated. I trust, however, that the province will be able to make a payment this year and I promise to do everything within my power to have delinquent taxes collected and to at least keep abreast of current expenses and past obligations. This condition does not obtain with regard to the municipal treasuries which, with the exception of two or three, are out of debt and have at least a small surplus, there being some that have several thousands of pesos on hand over and above all obligations. It is nonetheless true, however, that they are nearly all behind in the collection of the land tax, but I trust, as I have already stated, that land owners after this year's good crops are harvested will be able to pay, if not all, at least the principal part of their delinquent land taxes.a
highways of communication.
Though it cannot be said that the wagon roads of the province are good, they at least do permit travel even in the rainy season from one pueblo to another in a carromata, with the exception of the road between Nasugbu and Lobo, which for a long time past has been impassable for this mode of conveyance. A large amount of work is needed on the roads of this province, but the condition of the provincial treasury does not permit its being done now. The provincial board has decided, using the limited resources available, to repair the roads from Batangas to Bauan and to Tanauan, they being the principal highways of communication with Manila. It has also approved the repairs to the provincial government building and court of first instance and the construction and repair of bridges and culverts on the roads mentioned. All of this work would have been commenced immediately after approval had it not been for the want of an engineer. As it is now, the delay is causing great harm to traffic. In my opinion, the engineering district of Batangas and Tayabas is too large to be properly looked after by one man, and there can be no doubt

a The collections made by the provincial treasury during the fiscal year 1905-6 are shown in a statement on file in the War Department.

[p. 195]

that the deficiency in the service under the district engineer redounds to the prejudice of the provincial government that is held responsible by the public for its apparent inattention in the matter of roads. It is, therefore, urgent to fix the time during which the district engineer shall reside in each of the two provinces in order that the work may not be neglected, involving as it does neglect of the public interests and of the service.

natural resources.
To date, twenty mining claims have been filed throughout the province, eighteen of them being in the municipality of San Juan de Bocboc, one in Lobo and another in Batangas, all of the entrymen or locaters being Americans. Not all of the applications mention the character of the mine. It is therefore impossible to classify them.
political conditions.

The province of Batangas, now passing through an era of peace and tranquillity, will , if it continues, have nothing to envy of other provinces. My insistence in petitioning the superior authorities for the separation of the pueblo of Talisay from the municipality of Tanauan, to which it is at present annexed, as I had the honor of stating in the conference I held with the highest authority of the islands during his visit to this province, as well as in the letters which I have had the honor of addressing him, was precisely to cement said tranquillity, inasmuch as Talisay, on account of its proximity to the pueblos on the boundary line between the provinces of Cavite and Batangas, is the gateway between the two and also the place of refuge for persons of evil lives and of doubtful characters. In view of these circumstances, it is by all means necessary to create in that region a group of responsible men, constituting a municipal government as formerly and by so endowing Talisay with political personality, a municipal police force, and other adjuncts for the preservation of peace and the maintenance of order, providing for the proper vigilance of the outlying barrios of the province, it will be possible to depend upon one, or at the most two, companies of constabulary for its protection, instead of the four that the insular government now maintains there.

Great is my satisfaction in seeing my efforts in this direction crowned with success by the probable separation of Talisay; and now that the province has its confidence placed in me, and has elected me to govern it, I shall do everything on my part to secure from the government the completion of that work by asking for the separation of Lemery from its municipal capital, Taal.

The Commission, in consolidating these two pueblos, as well as Talisay and Tanauan, took into consideration more the economic than the political phase of the question. I have already expressed my ideas with regard to the separation of Talisay. It is now incumbent upon me briefly to submit certain considerations with respect to Lemery.

Lemery, before its consolidation with Taal, was a very much more prosperous pueblo than the latter; it enjoyed an existence of its own, and it is possible that its prosperity might have reached its full splendor had not the consolidation been carried out. The purpose of the latter was only the saving of municipal expenditures, but no attention was paid to the possibility that might result from dampening the enthusiasm of the industrious inhabitants of Lemery. The result has been a decrease of municipal revenues to such an extent that the saving sought to be effected will perhaps be illusory. It was really improper to consolidate a prosperous municipality with great hopes for the future with another of a lower class, in an economical sense and in proportion to population, which had no other claim to be designated as the seat of municipal government than that of antiquity. Lemery has not only been deprived of its mercantile and industrial enterprise, but also of its political enthusiasm, for after Taal had been declared the seat of municipal government, the inhabitants of the former pueblo saw themselves condemned in their aspirations for municipal office, as is usually the case in consolidations, however much some would have it otherwise. Hence it is that the inhabitants of Lemery have ceased their vigilance and their interest in the maintenance of good order. In order to make the latter effective, it would be necessary to make a considerable increase to the police force, which would result in a consequent increase in the municipal expenditures that would be saved if Lemery were a separate municipality. The entrance of the ladrones into Taal upon two occasions via Lemery cor-

[p. 196]

roborates my assertion; and although the attempt has been made to fasten complicity in this matter upon the residents of Lemery, a charge in my opinion completely false, it has not been substantiated; indeed, it is the greatest cruelty to wish to add this stigma to a pueblo already sufficiently ill used through the suppression of its political personality. Taal, on the other hand, without my wishing to imply that it is indifferent to the duty that the law has imposed upon it of looking after the interests of Lemery as it would after its own interests, both pueblos being now but one municipality, through natural egoism or because of antagonisms of character between the two pueblos, or through jealousy of the latter that at one time was more prosperous than itself and is now under its aegis, does not take the interest in Lemery that it should, the result being the events which have taken place.

As the representative of the people before the government, and possessing the confidence of the former, I think that I will not be disregarded in asking for the separation of the two pueblos of Lemery and Taal and their restoration to their original status, inasmuch as this separation does not seek any private end, but rather to cement by all possible means the tranquillity and good order prevailing in the province, with confidence that the measure will please the government and will result in increasing the prestige of the highest provincial authority by showing that his recommendations, when impartial and conducive to the prosperity and welfare of the inhabitants of the province, are always approved by the higher authorities.
public instruction.

The people of Batangas are so enthusiastic over education that the buildings provided by the government for that purpose are daily becoming more inadequate. In March of this year, 9,998 pupils were matriculated throughout the province. In 1905, there were but 97 primary schools, while now there are 109. There is one high school, besides seven intermediate schools. The municipal teachers number 143. In addition, there are 9 insular and 22 American teachers. The amount spent by the insular government during the last fiscal year for teachers was ₱57,310.20, while ₱35,538.36 was paid out in salaries to municipal teachers.

It must be borne in mind that the number of pupils indicated must increase during the coming months, as I believe it does every year, as during the time of rice sowing, weeding, and until after the harvest, the majority of children assist their parents in these labors.

The bureau of education proposes to buy a building for the intermediate school in Lipa, the insular treasury donating ₱5,000 and the municipal treasury at Lipa ₱3,500 toward this project.

public health and sanitation.
In the year 1902, after the organization in this province of the provincial board of health and of municipal boards of health, reports were regularly received once a month from the presidents of the latter boards. This was due to the fact that Colonel Maus, at that time commissioner of health, authorized the presidents of provincial boards of health temporarily to appoint proper persons, though non-professionals, to discharge the duties of the presidents of municipal boards of health, in view of the fact that there was not a sufficient number of doctors and undergraduates of medicine in the province. After the enactment of act No. 878, many of these offices remained vacant, owing to the fact above stated and to the circumstance that no medical man possessing a diploma desired to take the office at the miserly salary of ₱15, ₱20, or ₱25 per month, the municipalities being unable to offer more in view of the state of their finances. Hence, it is that the sanitary service cannot be as efficient today as it formerly was, on account of the lack of municipal boards of health. The old system was efficient, if for no other reason, because each pueblo was provided with a sanitary authority whose duty it was to enforce ordinances emanating from the president of the provincial board of health and to gather all statistics relative to the service. Without asking for an amendment of the said act, the purpose of which is to provide each pueblo with a physician or undergraduate of medicine possessing a degree, and, on the other hand, to protect the members of the profession, I ought to, however, petition that district health officers be authorized, if possible, by means of an Executive order, to appoint presidents of municipal boards of health, in a temporary capacity, when it is

[p. 197]

impossible to appoint professional men to the office, always, of course, giving preference to them, but appointing non-professionals when the former are not to be had.

The health of the province in general is relatively good, no diseases of an epidemic character being prevalent, for though malaria has not disappeared its effects are less than those of former years, due to the constant increase in the area of lands plowed that had formerly remained uncultivated, so that what is gained in an economic sense is also gained as regards the health of the inhabitants.

In the municipality of Tanauan, there were 11 cases of cholera and 9 deaths during the months of November and December, 1905; but thanks to the measures of precaution adopted in order to arrest the spread of the disease, it was entirely eliminated, to such an extent that up to the present time we have not had to deplore the appearance of new cases, in spite of the proximity of that pueblo to Manila, where there has been a reappearance of the disease, and of its continuous and incessant traffic with the capital city.

According to the records on file in the office of the secretary of the provincial board of health, there were 269,575 inhabitants in the province at the end of the fiscal year 1904-5, and 275,149 at the end of the fiscal year 1905–6, signifying an increase of 5,574 during last year.

According to the said statistics, there were 13,547 births and 7,973 deaths during the fiscal year 1905-6, and the following number were vaccinated during the same period:

By presidents of municipal boards of health 21,800
By insular vaccinators up to May 31 33,428
By provincial sanitary employees 5,016

making a total of 60,244 vaccinations made.

Only 11 cases and 9 deaths of cholera morbus have been recorded in the province, at the municipality of Tanauan, during the months of November and December, 1905. With regard to other diseases of an epidemic nature, I will only mention smallpox, with 2,727 cases and 693 deaths, and malaria, with 19,844 cases and 2,229 deaths.

I have already stated in another part of this report that malaria has shown itself recently as of a milder type considering the proportion of deaths, this being due to the increase in the area of cultivated lands that has also resulted in increased production.

I finish this modest and concise report, reiterating what I have already said at the beginning — that is, that in a period of scarcely four months that I have been at the head of this provincial government, it has been impossible for me to gather more information than that above given; nor is it possible for me to make more recommendations which will be conducive to the proper conduct of the affairs of this province until, as time passes, I become more perfectly informed of the duties of my office, as I realize that there are many problems to be solved, but before presenting them it is my desire to adduce arguments which will convince the government of the necessity of their solution, a solution which will redound not only to the benefit of the province but that will also result in carrying out my purpose of strengthening the confidence of the people in the government.

Respectfully submitted.

J. Losada.
Governor of the Province of Batangas.
The Governor-General.
Notes and references:
1 “Report of the Governor of Batangas,” part of “The Seventh Annual Report of the Philippine Commission 1906, Part I,” published 1907 by the Bureau of Insular Affairs, War Department, in Washington D.C. by the Government Printing Office.
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