November 1935
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Month November 1935

November 29, 1935

Visit with City Engineer Artiaga to the new “South Cemetery” originally initiated by him with my co-operation; it was formerly a large tract of the Zobel estate; is now filling up rapidly –then what?

Artiaga suggests that in the reorganization of the government, the office of Alcalde be made elective but with reduced powers, and a board combining a City Manager and commission form of government be appointive; adds that the inclusion of parts of the city now in Rizal Province is blocked by politicians. If done, it would give Manila another Assemblyman (and these are generally in opposition to the government) and take away one of the two members for Rizal Province.

Says Meralco want to take up most of their street railway tracks in Manila and to operate bus lines under the same franchise; he is in favor of this, but the present Alcalde and the Board oppose the plan, because Meralco insists they would then be relieved of the necessity of sharing in street repairing. Artiaga adds that the repair of streets would be cheaper anyway.

The Manila water front and Pasig River region is now rat proofed; no case of bubonic plague has occurred since 1914.

Workmen’s barrios are authorized but not yet started.

Storm drains are badly needed in the City; the filling of low-lying parts is unsatisfactory says Artiaga because of lack of drains.

Conference 9-10 a.m. with Paez over the proposed purchase of the Manila RR. Southern 4’s from the Southern Syndicate. He is much in favor of accepting the British offer, and says that if the plan is carried thru’ the RR. can meet its indebtedness for interest even in bad times.

Called on Don Elpidio Quirino, Secretary of Finance, who occupies my old office in the Ayuntamiento; did not find him. Director de la Rosa of the Art Museum conducted me around the Marble Hall where the House of Representatives used to sit in my time. Pretty bad collection of paintings, except those by Luna; troops of school children were going thru.

Hour with Maj. W.H. Anderson who says Quezon is not as friendly to him as formerly; Ehrman and the sugar men are too close to the President says Anderson. He thinks much else may be sacrificed to the sugar campaign. Says the hemp & cordage men have gone back to America disgruntled because no attention was paid them here. They now say they have secured the seed and will grow hemp in Panama thru’ the United Fruit Company. Anderson states that business and industrial morality has “gone to hell” in the United States since the war. He believes Japan has the most wonderful industrial organization in the world. Anderson wishes to sell his radio plant in Manila heights to the government.

Long talk with Colin Hoskins about the proposed reorganization of the government.

Arrival at 3:30 p.m. of the China Clipper –the first commercial airplane on the United States-China service. Like a great silver bird. Tremendous excitement –women rather hysterical. Perfect landing of the big plane in the harbor. Simultaneous arrival of the French Admiral on his ship. Everyone mistook the salutes for the Admiral as being a tribute to the plane!

Sinukuan Lodge social entertainment; speeches sandwiched between musical items. The masonic speakers referred to my reception in 1917 at Malacañan for the Masonic Bodies –in the palace where former Governors General in Spanish days had signed decrees of death for members of Masonic lodges. This entertainment was in my honor –Rafael Palma spoke.

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November 28, 1935

Received from Secretary Quirino and Paez papers on the proposed purchase from the English of the 4% bonds of the Manila RR. Co. Two and one-half hours study of these.

Before dinner, went out to Sunset Beach near Cavite to swim with Geo. Logan (Lapointe, Trapp & Arnold). Lapointe says the rebellious Sakdalista movement will subside on the payment of higher wages and provision for more employment. That communist movement is more serious.

November 27, 1935

Talk with Rafferty and McCreery, who is auditor and acting manager of the Philippine Railway. He said that the Iloilo line, is practically self-sustaining. Cebu is not suited to a railway. Is pessimistic over the situation in the sugar mills.

Bridge in p.m. with Mrs. Lussier, Mrs. Howell & Doria.

Dinner dance at the Manila Hotel. 25th anniversary of the marriage of Mr. & Mrs. Benito Razon –about 300 guests there. Well done and very pleasant.

November 26, 1935

Long talk with Rafferty in the morning re industrialization in the Philippines.

Golf at Wack-Wack with Jim Rockwell in the afternoon.

Appointment at 7 o’clock at Malacañan with Quezon. He has a sala (or office) next to his bedroom over the front door (where my bedroom used to be, but now reconstructed). He was cheerful and in good form; very friendly. He said he was off tomorrow for a couple of days in Laguna to look into this Encallado banditry. I told him it sounded like the days of Rizal’s books; he said the Constabulary had slipped back in the last few years –thought it a defect in Governor General Murphy’s administration. (Later Osmeña and I expressed to one another a wish that Quezon might not be known to take the matter too seriously.)

Quezon again voiced his irritation with Major General Parker. I said I was sorry to see General MacIntyre leave; he said that he, too, was sorry, but that MacIntyre was determined to leave and retire as Trade Commissioner. He had been quite knocked out by the recent death of his wife. Quezon plans to manage so that MacIntyre remains in the service.

We then discussed my appointment as Adviser on Communications and he asked me also to help him in the reorganization of the government. He is to put me in touch with Quirino and Paez on the purchase of the Manila RR. bonds from the English.

9:30 pm ball at Malacañan—about fifty extremely nice people—the only Americans there besides ourselves were Roy Howard, his wife and son and the High Commissioner and family. The dance was given for Judge Murphy who returns home tomorrow.

Had many interesting conversations —with General Valdes, Miguel Unson and Colonel Paulino Santos. The latter is opposed to the appointment of Moros to govern Moros; said it is better to give positions to bright Moros such as fiscal etc., to serve up here in Manila.

Teahan was amusing about the boredom of Baguio. Osmeña danced every dance; Quezon only one tango. Drinks were served on the balcony; Garfinkel, a.d.c., says that no drinks were offered at big parties following the custom initiated by Governor General Wood. I arranged, at wish of Quezon, to have Nick Kaminsky stay on as superintendent at Malacañan. Ah King whom I brought from Shanghai as my servant was installed again at the Palace as number one “boy”.

November 24, 1935

General MacIntyre called to say good-bye. I asked him whether I should stay on here, and he expressed approval. Said they had gotten started so well it would be a pity if they made a mistake, and I might be able to advise. He announced he would retire as Trade Commissioner in Washington, after a few months, but did not wish to stay on here, and was leaving on the Empress this p.m. Remarked that trade relations between the United States and the Philippines might be improved over the provisions of the present Tydings-McDuffie Act, but only if prosperity returned to the United States. Said at present there is always somebody about in Congress to be nasty. Lobbyists are everywhere in evidence. The Farmer’s Union is rather like Trade Unions –Chester Gray, their lobbyist is consulted by Congress in everything they do concerning agriculture. Recalled how Woodrow Wilson had driven out all the lobbyists –“it was funny how they all fled for cover.” Said he was going to lunch with Quezon to say good-bye.

11 a.m. Saw Quezon make his official call on High Commissioner Murphy at the Manila Hotel. Four skeleton companies of the 31st Infantry U.S.A. (only American regiment left in the Philippines) paraded. Quezon’s car was accompanied by three motor cycle cops –19 guns fired.

 

November 20, 1935

Last day of the Congressional visit. The hotel is in confusion and turmoil. Quezon came to say goodbye to the Vice-President and the Speaker &c. The President was very well and was quite active. Brief chat with Senators Ashurst and Gibson and Representative Treadway.

Bridge with Marquardt, Wright, & Ely.

The Herald gave an editorial replying to the criticism of the Bulletin on my proposed appointment as Adviser to the new Government.

Saw films of the Inaugural. Quiet evening.

November 19, 1935

4-5 p.m. University of the Philippines military review of students; folk dances with sixty five couples, all students; the men were in camisas de Chino and the girls in lovely traje de mestiza. This was the first time I had seen these dances. In my day they would all have dressed in European costume and danced the turkey trot. This shows their new self-confidence or pride of nationalism. They are not ashamed of being themselves. All notions of their being Indios have been thrown in the dust-bin. It was very lovely and a big success. The American Vice-President and Speaker Byrnes went after the first dance –(most of us are quite exhausted by these festivities). The visitors leave tomorrow, thank God!! Myriads of autograph-seekers.

Cocktail party at Le Jeunes (National City Bank). Big crush with the usual traffic jam &c &c –N.B. when entertaining in Manila, look after the traffic problem first; give far more light on stairway & in house, and less glaring lights in the garden. Confusion existed as the original request for “full dress” at Malacañan tonight. Sam Gaches sent his motor to Baguio to fetch his dress clothes –then flew up there himself– now is marooned there by washouts caused by the typhoon!

This morning the newspapers carried a very gracious statement by Quezon that he was trying to persuade me to remain as adviser to the Government. He is always such a gentleman! (This was answered the next morning by an editorial attack on my qualifications in the Bulletin, and much criticism there of Quezon for making a “political” appointment.)

(This was the first anniversary of my wedding with Doria. Nov. 19, 1934 at Alexandra, Egypt.)

First Ball at Malacañan given by President and Mrs. Quezon. Big crush, and a really brilliant affair, with sufficient light in the ball-room. Doria danced with Phil Buencamino in the Rigodon de Honor; she was dressed in a green Mestiza costume with silver flowers. Well done. Home early and to bed.

 

November 15, 1935

Inauguration of Manuel L. Quezon as President of the Philippine Commonwealth. His inaugural address was his best speech. The Secretary of War also made an admirable address. The ceremonies were perfectly carried out. The crowd was immense, but there was not much shouting. the old walls of Spanish Manila made a picturesque historical background for the memorable transfer of executive authority from the United States to the Philippine government. Military parade was blocked by mobs. Osmeña looked very serious, and very much the gentleman. Altogether, it was a moment of wonderful sentiment for me.

Governor General Murphy now becomes the first American High Commissioner –he left the ceremonies when his own part was finished, and went to his rooms in the Manila Hotel to receive the official call of the Admiral and of the Commanding General there. He told me a few weeks ago it looked as if there might be no inauguration: Aguinaldo was proposing to raise 60,000 men to march on Manila in demonstration of his opposition. He remarked that bloodshed would have been inevitable. I congratulated him on having put his hand to the plough, and then having finished the furrow. The Governor General seemed very tired.

One of the interesting features of the inauguration was the presence there of Quezon’s little son, in uniform with a.d.c. aiguilletes on his right shoulder –an honor paid only to a President or to a Field Marshal. General MacArthur sat next to Doria during the ceremonies.

Dinner for the Secretary of War at President Quezon’s house in Pasay; very well done indeed. Quezon was tired but happy –General MacIntyre, General Cox and Admiral Murfin– Doria sat next to General MacArthur at the table– there was an air of satisfaction among the guests. After dinner, we went to the Inaugural Ball which was opened by President and Mrs. Quezon. The auditorium was not overcrowded –people, especially among the Congressional party were pretty well tired out. Colin Hoskins told me that since this was the most weighty Congressional party ever gathered officially out of Washington, its visit has not only given great weight to the new government among Filipinos but had deeply impressed the “Old Guard” Americans here. The auditorium was beautifully lit and the whole affair in very good taste. Colin hopes that the new High Commissioner will assert American prestige here, and not be merely an “Ambassador.” General MacArthur told Doria that the position of High Commissioner at present was very “nebulous”; that he himself might take it if offered him –combining the duties of that and military adviser. The Secretary of War told Doria how he and the Governor General had visited Aguinaldo in Cavite giving only one hour’s notice of their coming, so that a crowd (of demonstrators) could be avoided –“nevertheless when they arrived at Kawit, there were two thousand people there”!

November 13, 1935

Called at Pasay. Quezon was closeted with General MacIntyre, General Creed Cox (Chief of the Bureau of Insular Affairs), Osmeña, Roxas, Paez and Carmona –I believe they were discussing the subject of the bonds of the Manila Railroad. Later, had fifteen minutes talk with Quezon, who told of his learning that the Governor General and Secretary of War were going ahead after all with defining the High Commissioner’s prerogatives. Quezon says he got out of bed and drove to Malacañan; the Secretary of War offered to leave the room , but Quezon asked him to stay so that he could hear what he said to the Governor General. Then Quezon went for the Governor General who, in reply, spoke of the army and navy. Quezon replied that while some of his best friends were in the army, that body as an institution seemed unable to think rationally on some subjects. The Governor General offered to resign as High Commissioner, if he had forfeited Quezon’s confidence, but the latter replied that this was not necessary. Then Quezon told the Secretary of War that the army had even “betrayed” an American Governor General (me). That if they tried on anything now he would ask the President to withdraw the United States Army, and he would take over the defense of the Philippines himself. He then told the Secretary of War that if he would treat him frankly and “without mental reservation” he would find that he was always ready to come half way to meet American views, but that if he conducted plans behind his back, he would get no co-operation from him, and then all that would be left for the Secretary of War to do would be to order his soldiers to shoot him. Quezon thinks this has definitely settled the relations between the Philippine Government and the army; says he reminded the Secretary of War how he had gome to Washington to get the Hare-Hawes-Cutting Act amended just so as to cut out a provision retaining the army here after independence. Quezon thinks he had now nothing adverse to expect from the office of the High Commissioner.

Another subject discussed at this animated meeting just before the inauguration of Quezon as President of the Philippine Commonwealth, where Secretary of War Dern and Governor General Frank Murphy “went to the carpet” with President-elect Quezon was the question of the number of guns to be fired by the American Army to salute the new government. This salute had already been fixed by the Secretary of War, before his arrival at Manila, at 21 guns. Later, after his first few days in the Philippines, Secretary Dern changed his mind, yielding under American “Old Timer” influence in Manila (Quezon thought through Murphy, on the instigation of the Bulletin), so it was decided to make the salute only 19 guns. Quezon heard of this by chance, so he hurried to the meeting at Malacañan Palace, where Dern and Murphy were in conference. Quezon told them both that he did not like this being done behind his back; that he would take his oath of office in his house in Pasay, and would not attend the inauguration; that he was only a farmer’s son (and a poor farmer) and all his life had found ceremonies irksome, but this matter of the salute was one affecting the new Commonwealth. Quezon stated that Murphy turned blue and Dern pink. He told them they had selected the wrong man to trample on –that no Secretary of War had any authority over him– not even the President could remove him unless he used his Army to do it and he intended the United States Government to understand this right at the beginning. That if, by the Tydings-McDuffie Act the United States intended to give sham self-government to the Filipinos, as the English had to the Egyptians and to the Indian Princes, he would not be a party to it. Dern very decently said he appreciated the way Quezon was talking. Thereupon, President Roosevelt was brought in by cable, and he sent a personal appeal to Quezon to go through with it, which the latter accepted, rather than embarrass Roosevelt and make the Congressional delegation appear ridiculous. Quezon adds that after this “brush,” his stomach ulcer cleared up, and he got well again.

November 12, 1935

Saw Joe Cooley who is still living in Zamboanga —told me of his success down there with dessicated coconuts.

 

Called at Malacañan on Vice-President Garner, but missed him. Talk with Senator Byrnes of South Carolina —mostly about fishing.

In P.M. “Carabao Wallow” at Camp Nichols Club House —excellent show of jumping horses— aviation display of six small pursuit planes—very impressive. Met General Alfred T. Smith who was very cordial and polite.

Went with the Paynes to Satterfield’s house (Colonel Livingston’s) on Pasay Beach —met Mr. Hargis (now of Cebu) who is interested in Mindanao mines. I asked him about the future of the sugar mills, he expressed confidence in spite of the calamity howlers.

Cocktail party at Mrs. Stowes —all the “Old Guard” were there— i.e. the former “Polo Club (Forbes) set.”

Dined with the Paynes on the lawn of the Army and Navy Club, then went to Malacañan Palace to the last reception to be given there by an American Governor General. The palace was dark enough for the last scene in Götterdämerung.

Quezon was there in full evening dress. The Governor General was very cordial and seemed happy. Colonel Garfinkel, a.d.c. as a special privilege, got some drinks for our group. Played bridge with Selma Payne, Julian Wolfson and Marguerite his sister—one of the staff came up and commented on the “first bridge game he had seen in two years at Malacañan”! It was a very small party. Talked with Nick Kamisky, the old palace superintendent.

November 11, 1935

Saw Jim Ross –full of vigour and life and apparently he has recuperated from his dreadful accident of last January in New York. He told me that the Army-Forbes forces were fighting against me as hard as ever –that Bowditch, Ermin and Weinzheimer were at it. That Ermin had said General MacArthur would quit if I stayed on here. I told him he had better repeat that to Quezon. Jim was full of fight –said I must stay on– that Quezon would never allow the American Army to run his administration –that I had friends here who would stand up for me &c. &c.

Saw former Senator Hawes who is ill with a bad heart –he is managing the Congressional party’s trip, and said that in his studies of Philippine history one of the things that made him angry was my opponents making me out as a Tammany roughneck  destroying things out here, instead of my being what he called a “Virginia gentleman.” Said his own bill was changed by the Tydings-McDuffie Act in only two particulars (i) the word “absolute”; (ii) withdrawing the United States Army at the end of ten years. Senator Hawes looks physically very feeble. He says that these people (Filipinos) cannot live with the present economic restrictions, which the United States must modify.

Saw Resident Commissioner Delgado and his wife; they came from America (leaving their children there) at his own expense, in order to accompany the Congressional delegation. A fearful row now on between him and ex-Senator Hawes –he says Hawes directs the Resident Commissioners in Washington, as he is an adviser to the Philippine Government at a “nominal” salary of $5,000 in addition to his $25,000 a year from the Philippine Sugar Growers Association. Delgado says that Hawes bosses the whole Congressional Mission, that he makes it seem part of the sugar lobby; that he (Delgado) is all that prevents the press men from spreading this idea; that the Philippine “Free Press” has just published an article attacking him (Delgado). He threatens that, if he is not sent back as Resident Commissioner, he will expose all this and show up Hawes. Hawes tried to prevent his coming out here. (I used all my best efforts to keep him quiet so as not to cast any discredit on the visitors nor on the government.) I told him finally, that I thought the appointment of the new Resident Commissioner was already settled.

Annual meeting of the Philippine National Guard Association; luncheon at Plaza Hotel, at which I was speaker.

Tea at Jaranilla’s. Mrs. Harry Hawes and Colonel Van Schaick were there. Met Rev. Dr. Lyons, who first suggested to me at Malacañan in 1920 the building of the Balete-pass road into Nueva Vizcaya  and he was later the first man to make the trip over the pass by motor. Mrs. Jaranilla told Doria that the argument against woman’s suffrage in the Philippines, was the great influence that such a measure would give to the Church. (N.B. Roxas says the same.)

Went at 7 p.m. to the Manila Club to observe the “two minutes Armistice silence.” Of those who had been present when I attended there with the American Admiral on Nov. 11, 1918, I saw only Stevenson and Gordon. Jim Ross and Colin Hoskins spent the evening with me while Doria went to the Armistice Day dinner dance at the Manila Club. Our conversation was chiefly about arrangements for a reception to be given to the visitors by the American (Democrats) of the Philippines. Also we had much talk about MacArthur and Quezon.

In Senator Hawes’ room I met McDaniels, agent for the American Cordage Trust.

November 4, 1935

Visit from Rafael Palma —I asked him if Osmeña was friendly to me now—he said “yes— that Osmeña had forgotten the slight resentments of 1918-20. Said Quezon doubted the loyalty of Speaker Paredes during the recent electoral campaign; that the latter was not really a coalitionist—and that Paredes would not be reelected Speaker—probably it would would be Manuel Roxas.

I called on Quezon but found he was closeted with members of the Assembly —probably trying to settle the Speakership fight— so I did not wait. Palma says Paredes will be offered either the Resident Commissionership in Washington, or else a position here as counsel to the Government Corporations.

Called at Sternberg (Military) Hospital to enquire about General Hull & Colonel Mason.

Reception and ball at Malacañan given by the Governor General for the Secretary of War and Mrs. Dern. The large room was practically cut in two by the orchestra; tables on balcony; and dancing on the riverside half of the big room,—but all lights out in dance room making it very gloomy. There was no gaiety perceptible and banks of thirsty men were looking in vain for a drink. The grounds, on the other hand, were too brilliantly illuminated so that all one could see outdoors were lights—no trees or shrubbery were visible.

Secretary of War Dern was affable. General MacArthur whispered in my ear “This place must be full of ghosts for you”.

November 2, 1935

An hour and one-half’s conversation with Quezon in Pasay —he is still in bed but is better. Had him to myself as the others were at the pier greeting the arrival at 9:30 a.m. of Secretary of War Dern. Quezon again expressed a thrill at my recent reception by the public here —said it was genuine and not manufactured— he had nothing to do with preparing it. He added that they would have “murdered me” with kindness if it had not been for the preparations for the inauguration. Described may incidents of the Wood and Stimson administrations —Said he might have— if he had not himself as Resident Commissioner learned to know the real sentiments of American people. He added that Stimson was rough and direct and pounded the table. Said he (Q) loved Stimson —he always kept his word and told the truth.

Stimson, said Quezon, offended the Americans here by refusing to consult their opinions —he told them that he represented the United States and what he wanted to learn was Filipino opinion. He described the successful fight Stimson made here to put the foreign banks under the bank examiner. He had told Jim Ross and the Manager of the National City Bank of New York that they were obstructing his Government. Had Manager of the National City Bank transferred out of this country and told them that if the bank did not remove him, it would not have the backing of the Department of State, when he took up his post of Secretary in Washington. Quezon remarked with a laugh that when Stimson left here, the local Americans would [have] elected me (the writer) President if Stimson had run against me. When I offered to leave “unless he had something more to say to me,” he hesitated then opened up as follows:

He told me that I was to be a guest of the Government for one month; and after the inauguration, he would make me one of his advisers —the work to be defined later—I was to fix my own salary—he wanted me with him, and thought it would make a favorable impression on the people but did not seem positive of that. (I suppose he feels that my welcome here is a sentiment which might be diminished if I took any work here.)

Then he talked of the Governor General and remarked that it was an outrage that Nick Kamisky, the old caretaker of the Palace, was being taken away from Malacañan but that he wanted my servant Ah King as his butler. The he talked again of plans he said were being made by Murphy for future work of the High Commissioner here.