Boy Scouts Beyond The Seas
to Spain. British Scouts of Industry
There seem to be few parts of the world where the Spaniards did not come in the old times, and still fewer where the British have not also been.
Here in the Philippines we find this. The Spaniards occupied the islands for two hundred years, then in 1762 they had war with Great Britain and the British came and attacked them here as elsewhere. The British came over from India, bringing a number of Indian troops with them.
Manila, the capital, was a strongly fortified city and is still to-day inclosed by great grey ramparts and gateways.
The British troops nevertheless attacked, and after breaking the south wall captured the place. Afterwards, in making peace with the Spaniards, they agreed to hand it back to them if they paid the expenses of the expedition. This the Spaniards agreed to do, but from that day to this they never paid up, although they got their colony back.
Thirteen years ago the Spaniards came to war with the Americans, and the American fleet under Admiral Dewey attacked and captured the Philippines by destroying the Spanish fleet which was protecting the colony at Cavite in Manila Bay. So now it is an American colony.
Under their energetic rule the whole country, which was once known as a sleepy, slow sort of place, is now quickly growing into a rich and busy land. I was glad to see that Britain is taking a big share in making it prosperous.
Most of the ships in the great harbour were flying the red ensign, and there are over three hundred British merchants and others living in Manila.
The natives, Filipinos, as they are called, of whom there are eight millions, are a dark but civilised race, nice, but inclined to be rather lazy, so they don’t make as much out of their country as the more energetic white men do.
The country people live in curious houses made of bamboo, with thatched walls and roofs, raised three to four feet off the ground. They dress in European style, but the women wear very large puffed-out sleeves of thin gauze.
Filipino ladies wear English dresses with very wide sleeves.