OUR ISLANDS AND THEIR PEOPLE.
Palestine did. Next to the Mangyans, the Mindayas are lower in the scale of savagery than any of the other tribes. They are superior to the Mangyans, however, in the fact that they live in permanent houses, in villages, and have an established form of government presided over by a dato or head chief. They also cultivate small farms and live principally by agriculture. Their houses are built in trees, twenty to forty feet in the air, and are composed of a strong framework of bamboo poles covered with nipa thatch. The floors are made of heavy timbers of hardwood, laid together so closely that it is impossible to shoot an arrow between them. The limbs of the. trees are cut off on a general level with bolos, and the frames that support the floors firmly lashed to' them, so that even a severe storm will not affect the houses unless the tree is uprooted or the trunk broken off, which does not often occur. Frequently a single tree will contain a
village. Imagine thousands of tall palms waving their fanlike leaves in the air above a collection of thatched cottages built along the wide, level streets. Let some of the palms have great bunches of green and yellow cocoanuts hanging to them and others be loaded with the round green and yellow nuts of the betel. Let there be bananas here and there; beds of nipaa great fernlike bunches of leaves, each fifteen feet long and a yard wide, sprouting up from the ground. Put in cotton trees from twenty to thirty feet high, their leafless branches standing out at right angles to their white trunks, and great bolls of white wool hanging to them. Let there be flowers of strange shapes and colors. Hang an orchid here and there upon a dead branch, and under all put a turf as thick and as green as that of the bluegrass of Kentucky, and you have some idea of Davao, which has but a few weeks been occupied by our troops. You must add, however, the housesa
SCENE ON THE ISLAND OF CORREGIDOR, IN MANILA BAY.
Showing also a party of Igorrote warriors, armed with spears, squatting on the ground.
cluster, or village, of four or five houses, all of the inhabitants using a single ladder, which is nothing more than a notched pole, and is invariably drawn up at night. Little children climb this pole-ladder with the instinct of monkeys.
The semi-civilized Visayans, who are Christians, and constitute the ruling class of Mindanao and other islands between that and Luzon, have adopted the savage custom of tree-dwelling in a modified forma that is to say, they elevate their houses on posts several yards above the ground, and enter them by means of ladders or movable steps. Davao, the principal town of southern Mindanao, is thus described by Mr. Frank G. Carpenter, who recently spent some time there:
a I wish you could take a walk with me through the town of Davoa. It is more like a botanical garden than a United States 44
cottages more picturesque than any you find in the mountains of Switzerland. Some, in fact, look like Swiss chalets, except that they are built upon high poles, and you must mount stairs to reach the first floor. Some have walls of a basket-work of woven bamboo. Others have walls of boards, and not a few have walls of gray thatch composed of grass or nipa. The roofs of all the houses are of the nipa palm, sewed to a framework of bamboo poles in such a way that it comes out over the walls with wide-extending eaves. There is not a glass window, a chimney, nor a bit of plaster in the whole town. The windows are mere holes in the walls, with shutters which can be raised or slid back, and the floors of most of the houses are of strips of bamboo, in some cases so far apart that you have to be careful not to catch your toes in the cracks while walking over them in your bare feet.