MASSACRE OF THE CALLE DE CAMBA 107
in the rebellion. Bands of marauders infested the provinces and the country was in a very unsettled state, some insurgent bands approaching Cavite.
On March 24th, the 74th Regiment of Native Infantry in garrison at that town, the regiment that had distinguished itself so remarkably in Lachambre's division, being always in the front, was ordered to march out against them. Whatever the reason, whether they felt that their splendid services had not been duly acknowledged, or, as is likely, their pay was months in arrears, they refused to march against their own countrymen. Eight corporals were called out of the ranks and shot then and there in the presence of the regiment, which was again ordered to advance, and a threat made that a refusal would mean death to all.
All did refuse and were sent to barracks to await sentence. The next morning the entire regiment with arms and equipment, marched out and deserted in a body to the insurgents, saying they were willing to fight the foreign enemies of Spain, but not against their own friends. The following day another regiment joined them, but I have no note of its number.
It was now that an event occurred in Manila that showed how little desire there was amongst the Spaniards to treat the natives with ordinary justice, much less to conciliate them.
This was the massacre of the Calle de Camba, quite a short distance from the American Consulate, and it was perpetrated on the 25th and 26th of March. On the first of those day a number of Visayan sailors from the vessels in the Pasig had assembled in a house in the above street, which was their usual resort.
Somehow the story got about that an illegal assembly was being held, and the police, without more ado, attacked the meeting and shot down a dozen, taking sixty-two prisoners. The next morning the whole of these prisoners were marched to the cemetery, and all shot, though many them were known to have been merely passing by at the time.
This is vouched for by Mr. Oscar F. Williams in an official letter to Mr. Cridler, dated 27th March, 1898. It could hardly have been a mere coincidence that a revolt of the Visayas broke out about ten days later, when they made a desperate attack upon the city of Cebu in which many lives were lost and much property damaged.This is vouched for by Mr. Oscar F. Williams in an official letter to Mr. Cridler, dated 27th March, 1898. It could hardly have been a mere coincidence that a revolt of the Visayas broke out about ten days later, when they made a desperate attack upon the city of Cebu in which many lives were lost and much property damaged.