The Log of the Empire State by Geneve L. A. Shaffer
Dedicated to My Mother and Your Mother
To My Mother
Your little hands are folded, Your tired breast is still. But your valiant heart beats on and on, And so forever will. In the lives of those who knew you, Each gentle beat will bring An echo sweet and tender, To linger there and sing.
By C. T. S.
The Log of the Empire State
As Miss Shaffer was appointed the special representative of the San Francisco Examiner on the San Francisco Chamber of Commerce, Commercial Relationship Tour of the Orient, as well as being a member of the San Francisco Chamber of Commerce, she was requested to write this little book covering the three months' trip, and she wishes to thank all the members of the party for their kindly interest and cooperation in helping her secure much of the information contained herein.
Before we had reached the Golden Gate we acted like some great happy family, eager to enjoy every minute. After we stopped waving our tired arms to the crowds of friends on the docks and the last bouquet aimed at the Mayor's tug had landed in the bay, small groups, with radiant faces, discussed what do you suppose? No, not the crossing of the Bar, but the opening of the ship's bar. As you know, Uncle Sam seems to consider the dry law impossible on the water.
We were all saying that San Francisco's farewell made us proud to belong to such a city, when M. A. Gale told us that he wanted to add a word of praise for one of San Francisco's traffic officers, who let him by when he made a speedy trip for some valuables left behind, which had just been missed at the last moment. But, do you remember who was the last passenger? She was nervous and fidgety ever since she came on board, too. None other than Bulah, the handsome mare bound for Yokohama. It was worth going through the steerage to watch her enjoy one of our "eleven o'clock" apples.
When the lunch gong sounded, we all went below (doesn't that sound real nautical?) to try and get settled in our home for the next three months. Apparently there was no place left for even our hats, thoughtful gifts, fruits, candy and flowers, filled every inch of ordinary space. Christmas time was tame by comparison.
Many were down to lunch, fortified by a highball, but at dinner, mal de mer had claimed its victims, and there were only a few brave spirits on deck to indulge in dancing the first night.
The second day out everybody was trying to remember everyone else by name. One positive lady insisted that A. I. Esberg was Dr. Morton, but little mistakes were forgotten, and many of the committee were soon calling each other by their first names.
While most of us were getting comfortably settled in our deck chairs, someone noticed that Louis Glass, George Vranizan, C. W. Hinchcliffe, Carl Westerfeld, C. A. Thayer, C. H. James, William Symon, F. S. Ballinger, P. H. Lyon, S. L. Schwartz and Henry Mattlage had disappeared below. And it is said by one who trailed them to their lair, that the Fantan and Pie-gow games, going on in the steerage, were the magnet.
There were other discoveries in the steerage. A Servian girl, Alma Karlin, who speaks ten languages fluently, but could not afford a first-class passage (although once well-to-do) on account of the low exchange value of her country's money. She is on a three-year tour to study conditions in the Pacific Islands, to learn if her countrymen can successfully immigrate to this region.
A young American married to a Chinaman, a group of Orientals devouring an odd-looking concoction with chop sticks, a motley group of Hindus with their fezzes, made the picturesque gathering, that gladly received the surplus fruits distributed by the belles of the ship.
We struck a squall that surprised many of us enjoying the salt sea breeze in our stuffy state rooms, by washing the spray over our neatly put-out dinner clothes. That night it took real sea legs to dance while the ship rocked. But it was great sport, and Sidney Kahn's University Orchestra "jazzed" on as if they were on solid ground.
The third day all of the officers appeared in white. White duck curtains replaced the wooden doors. The women blossomed out in the daintiest of summer frocks, the men in white flannels, and although most of us found our shoes difficult to put on (in spite of the fact that we all had shoes a half a size larger) deck games were in full swing and sea sickness was a thing of the past.
Commissioner Krull was the first to jump into the open-air swimming tank, some of the ladies following. But it took deck tennis and the tropics to make the tank popular.
Captain Nelson took us on a tour of inspection, and as eating was the principal occupation, we asked to see the electrically operated galley first, for, next to the bar, it was the chief attraction. We all have heard of electric dish washers, potato peelers, knife sharpeners, bread bakers, cake mixers, etc., but what a guarantee for matrimonial bliss there would be if every young bride could be as sure as this ship was to please the most particular of husbands. How? By using an automatic, electric egg boiler that can be set for any time, and when the desired number of minutes is reached, presto! up comes the egg out of the boiling water! Not a second overdone, or underdone. In China some of us were given, as a great delicacy, a "twenty-year-old egg" and toward the end of the trip many of us had lost interest in all eggs, no matter how cooked.
The stoves burn oil, and although the day was hot, and the noon meal was in preparation, there was no excessive heat and no fumes. The white-clad Chinese waiters did their appointed tasks with the smoothness and lack of confusion of clockwork.
Our smiling waiters greeted us every morning in long blue kimonos. Ours answered to the name of Arling, and after one had ordered an abnormal breakfast, he suggested that the griddle cakes were "veery goo-wd." Everyone ate more than they ever thought they could, and when at eleven o'clock, the deck boy came along with broth, few there were that had the courage to say, "No." The tang of the sea caused groups to invade the charming tea-room, with its yellow curtains and painted wicker furniture, at tiffin time. And if chicken, a-la-King, was served after the nightly dancing party, - well, everyone said, "We don't make a trip like this every day, so, why not?"
There was a weighing machine on the lower deck, but, we all believed that it must have been out of order. If we had not gained any more pounds than we had spent for oriental souvenirs, we would have been lucky.
Some of the older members of the party welcomed the Sunday evening movies instead of the strenuous dancing, but we were all glad to go to bed after the movie villain had been killed.
The servants were so attentive and the beds so soft that many of the ladies fell into the custom of having breakfast in the staterooms.
After lunch one sunny day we mounted the steep little stairs to the captain's quarters. His spacious combination living and bedroom with private bath was a miracle to those of us who had to have the room boy move the luggage in order to have space enough to open the quaint little bureau drawers. On his center table was one of those strange dwarf Japanese trees, that are not permitted to be imported. These odd plants seem to thrive in spite of their diet of whiskey and the binding of their branches with tiny wires - perhaps, if they must be fed exclusively on whiskey, there is another reason besides the possibility of their bringing into our country a foreign insect that excludes them.
We were told that the captain's and officers' quarters were certified and not counted when the capacity of the ship was figured, so the ship seemed bigger than ever to us. Next we invaded the chart room, saw the device that tells the whereabouts of a coming typhoon, listened to the telephonic arrangement that proclaims the proximity of the buoy bells, watched the little indicator that makes a red line depicting the exact course of the ship on a circular chart, tried out the fire alarm system that instantly rings a bell if a high temperature is registered any place on the ship, from the bridal suite to the darkest corner of the hold. We set the fog whistle to blow at regular intervals. We were told that the searchlight could enable the pilot to discover objects about five miles out, and by the time the gyro compass and numerous other devices had been explained to us, we were ready to believe that the ship cost seven million dollars, and that five thousand dollars was the daily operating expense (two thousand dollars of which was spent for the one thousand gallons of oil).
The mock trial was one of the features of the trip. Nearly everyone was arrested, sentenced or fined. Mrs. F. Panter's and Captain Ruben Robinson's trials were the most sensational. In spite of Carl Westerfeld's efforts to save Captain Robinson from being convicted of fox trotting with a certain charming widow, he was heavily sentenced. Louis C. Brown was released upon the hearing of the eloquent pleadings of his attorney, Louis H. Mooser. At the close of the session, Commissioner Francis Krull imposed a fine upon himself for his merciful tendencies as the judge.
When a crowd of us piled into the wireless room and asked the whys and wherefores, the poor operator gave up trying to explain why the messages were all sent at night, and settled the matter by telling us that the atmospheric conditions were better then, and that the ship was equipped with two systems, the spark and the arc, but that the arc was given the preference. The Empire State kept its apparatus tuned to the one at Sloat Boulevard, so if any of those at home missed us, just all they had to do was to drive past that station any night, and, perhaps, at that very moment, a message was being received from us.
When we saw land, the women immediately planned a meeting to discuss what to wear and do when we arrived in Honolulu on the following day. A. I. Esberg gave an address the evening before on the meaning of our Commercial Relationship tour and the good-will that he believed San Francisco would establish by this mission. Afterward we danced, then followed a Chinese supper. Yes, we were eating again.
No alarm clock that was ever invented smote the ears with greater animosity than did the ship's gong at 6:30 the morning we arrived at Honolulu. If it had not been for the fact that the committee was there (just outside our portholes, in yachts loaded with leis to welcome us) it would have taken even more than that disturber of the peace to arouse us, for sleep seemed the most desired thing after the Chinese dinner dance that had lasted until the wee hours.
We were all at the luncheon given to us by the Honolulu Commercial Club. Faxton Bishop told us of the seriousness of the labor situation and asked our aid. We all remember how eloquently our much lamented spokesman, A. F. Morrison, answered the address and said that California's prosperity depended in many ways upon Hawaiian prosperity and their problems were our problems.
Wallace R. Farrington, Governor of the Territory of Hawaii, said that the labor situation must be solved to insure the prosperity of the islands.
We were next whizzed to the Outrigger Club, and if everyone had seen how hard Warren Shannon paddled to reach the crest of a wave before it broke, they would all be convinced that he was the hardest working supervisor we have.
John H. Wilson, the mayor of Honolulu, motored our party around the island and gave us a luncheon at a hotel near one of the beaches. We will remember this day as one of our happiest.
The first day out of Honolulu we were all discussing our impressions. Most of us had passed the Honolulu schools at recess time and had noted only one or two white-skinned children. It was, as Dr. A. W. Morton expressed it, "Looks like a little Japan." Of course, everyone knows of the vividness and great variety of the coloring of the foliage in sharp contrast to the brilliant pink soil, but we could not stop talking about it. Some of us noted the beauty of a little plant, which at home we carefully water and cherish in some tiny pot, only to learn that on the Island it grows in such abundance that it is considered nearly as great a pest as the Mediterranean fly - so it would seem that beauty in the vegetable kingdom does not always mean desirability, any more than it does in the human family.
Many of us had been taken over the sugar-cane plantations, seen the young plants pushing through the paper (put over them to keep out the weeds), gone through the refineries, seeing the cane stalks ground in the huge rollers and had been allowed to taste the sickeningly sweet molasses. Along the roads were Hawaiian huts with octopi drying on the porches, beside the reclining figures of the strong providers of the family, resting up, no doubt, from the task of catching and killing the octopi by hitting the squid's heads.
Some of the party waxed eloquent about the wonderful leprosy cures, recently accomplished in the Islands, through the discoveries of the chemist Dr. Dean, who took the chalmoogra oil used in India over a thousand years ago as a cure (but according to tradition, the sufferers considered the cure worse than the disease) and made it possible to take.
Some of us stopped to investigate the powerful wireless station with the instruments capable of receiving messages at a distance of 5000 miles. Still others told of the island at the Pearl Harbor Naval station being purchased for ten thousand dollars and then being sold to our government for 400,000 dollars.
Many had not only received the leis, but a new native name as well, for, as you know, it is the Hawaiian way of labeling everyone with some name that to the Islander expresses their predominant characteristic.
We were gazing at the magnificent sunset, when someone who seemed to have inside information, repeated the old adage, "A red sky at night is the sailor's delight, but if followed by a red sky in the morning, it's the sailor's warning." We had all found the tranquil waters of the Pacific so refreshing after the rush and excitement of Honolulu sightseeing, and did not know that the worst storm the Empire State had experienced was before us.
Most of us rolled out of bed the next morning, and the only reason some of us did not fall to the floor was because the bureaus stopped us half way, with many a resounding thud. Many of the party did not attempt to get up or out of the staterooms. Will we ever forget the dining tables equipped with metal railings, divided into sections to hold in the dishes? Even then, the eggs and cream rolled over the cloth or into our unreceptive laps, and the way the waiters moistened the cloth in the spots where they set the water glasses in an attempt to make them stay put. But they would not any more than our tummies would "stay put."
We then appreciated the necessity of the railings all over the ship, especially when we commenced to hit each side of the passage way in trying to step forward. Edward C. Wagner was jestingly remarking to Louis Glass that if he should fall, there would be broken "Glass." It was but a short while afterward when an unexpected lurch of the ship threw him to the deck, breaking his glasses.
We all remember that the deck chairs had an unpleasant way of sliding until they hit the opposite wall, bouncing out the sea-sick occupants. Even in getting out of the chairs (tied to the railings) many of us fell. The upper deck looked like the ward of an emergency hospital. Mrs. A. F. Morrison had fallen, breaking a bone in her wrist, Mrs. E. Dinkelspiel had her head injured, Louis Glass had a bandage over his cut face, and scarcely anyone escaped without black and blue marks.
To see one of our capitalists being led weakly by a strong attendant, while grasping his mal de mer tin firmly, was a sight unnoticed, in the tumult of rushing waves. Of course, all portholes were closed, two of the crew narrowly escaped being washed overboard. Their spotless uniform of white had long since been discarded for rain coats and high boots. Some of us slept out on deck rather than negotiate the treacherous stairs to the uncertain joys of a stateroom in which the trunks had to be lashed to the walls to avoid painful contact (you see, many of us had the vivid recollection of the crashes that woke us). In most cases the dainty bureau scarfs upon which reposed the Cologne bottle, mirror, powder, hairpins, etc., etc., had dashed into one conglomerate, broken mass on the floor.
M. A. Gale and Warren Shannon (usually the life of the party) were seen in dejected heaps, with only half-closed eyes visible above the steamer robes.
Mrs. Carrie Schwabacher gathered about the piano those well enough to be about (after the storm had been raging for two days and nights), playing old-fashioned songs, to try to raise the drooping spirits.
Chanticleer never greeted the morning with gayer spirits than this party, when we saw the clouds had rolled away, and when someone repeated, "On the road to Mandilay, where the flying fishes play" (while we watched the flying fishes play), all the old familiar quotations took on a new significance of realty.
On October 10, Dorothy Gee, the Chinese girl banker of San Francisco, presided over the ceremony celebrating the tenth anniversary of the Chinese independence Day, held in the steerage. Besides giving a clever address, she acted as interpreter for the speeches delivered by F. R. Eldridge, chief of the Far Eastern Division for the Bureau of Foreign and Domestic Commerce, A. F. Morrison and A. I. Esberg.
Many of us felt a great curiosity to see the engine that had pushed us through the storm, so we descended countless iron stairs, down to the very bottom of the ship; above us towered a bewildering assortment of ladders, levers, pipes and valves. The heat was over-powering, so we rushed to the ventilator and cooled off quickly. The deafening noise prevented us from hearing all the engineer's explanations. Next we were taken singly (as the space between the two massive doors will not permit of more) through the two massive doors separating the boilers from the rest of the ship. In case of an accident all the doors of the ship, including these, could be automatically closed from the deck, dividing the ship into three compartments.
We saw how the thirty-seven cakes of ice, consumed daily, were made, inspected the laundry and peeked in where the precious, rapidly diminishing liquors were stored, and we all felt satisfied that we knew "What made the wheels go around."
With the regular meetings of the Executive committee, with Herbert Hoover's Trade Investigation committee (consisting of Lansing Hoyt, C. J. Mayer, Gordon Enders, E. Kehich, Paul Steindorff and headed by F. R. Eldridge), mingling with the party to assist in establishing friendly commercial relationship; with all those identified with certain businesses and professions divided into groups, and even with the women organized, we felt ready to meet any Oriental dignitaries, or delegations.
We remember well how often Warren Shannon, with his unfailing humor, sent us into gales of laughter, auctioning off the numbers that represented the possible run of the ship on the following day. Louis Mooser bid the first one hundred dollars on the number that won the pool. C. H. Matlage, William Muir, F. H. Speich, Louis Brown, Mrs. S. Schwartz and Mrs. Carrie Schwabacher were also heavy bidders.
Everyone started borrowing clothes from everyone else, right after breakfast, the day of the masquerade. P. J. Lyon made a very gay girl, C. R. Reed went as Woodrow Wilson, A. I. Esberg as a Chinese, C. B. Lastrete as a bandit, Margarete Rice as Cleopatra, Mrs. Bruce Foulkes as a beautiful Spanish senorita, Constant Meese, W. Levintritt, F. W. Boole and C. H. Matlage as "Four Dainty Kewpies," Edward C. Wagner as an oiler, and Carl Westerfeld was a regular devil.
Of course, Mrs. A. Gee, Mrs. A. B. Luther, Mrs. Washburn, Mrs. Wheeler, Mrs. Boole, Mrs. Wood, Mrs. Shannon and Mrs. Grady looked charming, as usual. The Misses Bridge, Miss Kinslow, Miss Neff and Miss Bell also looked attractive. Dr. Gates, Dr. Judell, Miss Simon, Mrs. Rothenberg, Mrs. Denson, Mrs. Dunn, Mrs. Yates, the Misses Hunter, Mrs. Barnard, Miss James, Mrs. Ross, A. W. Morton, Jr., and Mrs. Krull went to such a lot of trouble to get up their interesting costumes. Henry S. Bridge had, "a fine make-up" and looked like a real Southern Negro. Pretty Miss Howlett and Miss Wood always made one think of the posters of "Sweet Sixteen."
Warren Shannon's Entertainment committee, assisted by Miss Moore, Miss Craig, Mrs. Bercovich and Mrs. Panter, certainly discovered the talent on board and we will always be grateful for the sweet singing of charming Mrs. Gale, Mrs. Brown, Mrs. Schwartz and Miss Reed and the playing of Miss Moore, Mrs. Alexander and of our talented "Mary."
If anyone felt a bit out of sorts all they had to do was to think of the courage and sweet, uncomplaining manner of Mrs. Morrison or what good sailors Mrs. Anna R. Luther and Miss Louise Elliott were trying to be.
Columbus never strained his eyes more eagerly to see land than the San Francisco Chamber of Commerce representatives did, when someone said that the dim outline of Fujiyama might be visible above the hazy shore that looked as much like clouds as land.
All the men of the party were so busy with their field glasses, admiring Yokohoma Harbor's wonderful fortifications, that they did not even hear the women question what sort of a dress would be suitable for the coming grand reception, and yet, at the same time withstand sight-seeing in the dust of the streets. Even Mary Garden on her opening night did not receive such rapt attention as did this harbor.
As we looked down over the huge side of the Empire State upon the turmoil of humanity, baggage and freight and the uneven street beyond, we gave thanks to the Baptist missionary, who is credited with making an old baby carriage into the first rickshaw, for the convenience of his sick wife. When we saw the little brown men actually run away with our most corpulent representatives, without any apparent effort, we forgot all about "Man's inhumanity to man" and no baby ever enjoyed its first perambulator outing more than our party.
First, we swooped down upon the banks to change our money, but the yen and sen counted out to us seemed as valueless as stage money. However, we grew to respect it, after visiting Benton Dori and departing with elaborate kimonos that the shrewd businessmen and women of the party would have passed by as being too expensive, at home.
It was great fun after being extravagant to figure out that a yen is only a little over half as much as one of our dollars and that one had only spent half as much as one thought.
Our party met the ladies (some of them American college graduates) and gentlemen of the Yokohama Chamber of Commerce at a big reception in a theatre. The governor, through his interpreter, said that our arrival was on the first sunny day they had had in some time, that the chrysanthemums were just blooming, and that this was a good omen, for the war clouds had vanished. Geisha girls danced while singing a specially composed chant of welcome, and an elaborate luncheon was served in an adjoining hall. A. I. Esberg and F. R. Eldridge answered the welcome saying, "That we hoped to establish much more friendly and permanent relationship with the people of Japan."
Most of the party had the inevitable tea in the foreign settlement, known as the Bluff. Most of these houses are of the vintage of fifty years ago and range in rental from $125 to $150, unfurnished, the tenant having to install his own plumbing if he wishes such a luxury. We wanted to know why some better arrangement was not made and were reminded of the law that does not permit of any foreign ownership of land.
Louis Mooser, former head of the San Francisco Real Estate Board, was much interested in the situation. It seems that about one-seventh of the small area available for foreigners was under perpetual lease to the Germans and we were told that when war broke out it was taken over by the Japanese, who only allowed their own race to buy, and all rents were immediately raised.
It was said that instead of complaining about how little land Japan was allowed in the United States, it would be fairer to give Americans in Japan the same privileges that she enjoys in some of our states.
Americans in Yokohoma say that the Japanese law drafted to relieve this situation and often proudly referred to by Japanese diplomats, has never really been passed and therefore has no value. They add that if old Marquis Okuma had more peace-craving followers and the lawmakers were responsible to the people instead of the Emperor, for whom they are said to act, differences between the United States and Japan could be more quickly and completely settled.
To board a train after our long sea-trip was a delightful change. After passing through quaint villages, rice fields, and interesting garden patches we arrived at Tokyo in time for the ambassador's reception. The moment one talks to Charles Warren, in charge of our American Embassy in Japan, one feels that our Japanese problems are in very conservative and capable hands.
Between receptions, we visited many quaint and beautiful temples. At one we were so hospitably received, served with tea and dainty rice cakes made with a special emblem upon them for the occasion that we forgot to grumble about being made to remove our shoes. Only a few of the party remembered the Japanese custom of removing the outer foot-gear, when entering their temples, and came prepared with easily removed pumps. They had a good laugh at the row of dignified, badge-bedecked representatives, solemnly lacing up their shoes, while sitting on the stoop about a foot from the ground, with the blazing sun upon them.
When we talked to some of the American residents in Japan, they all got on the old familiar subject, the high cost of living, but they seem to agree that it cost just twice as much to live in Japan as any other place in the world. It seems that without considering the high rent, an amah (a sort of maid who will do only certain duties), a house boy (who is anywhere from twelve to sixty years old), and a cook (who gets a commission on everything you buy) must be kept, even in the simplest of homes. Those accustomed to one servant in America usually find it necessary to have from three to six in Japan. Of course their wages are less than in the United States, but food is very high. Rice, for instance, was twenty percent higher than in America. Inferior coal was twenty-two fifty a ton, and the high ceilinged, furnace less houses require a great deal of coal and wood in winter. Very few Americans use the jammed street cars. Automobiles are very expensive to maintain, not only on account of the rough streets, but the licenses are very high. One of our party hired a rick-shaw for twenty minutes and paid a yen (about fifty cents), so residents usually find it more economical to keep their own rick-shaws and coolies.
Certainly the Japanese are past masters in entertaining. No wonder it is said that some of our former diplomats were so much influenced by their lavish entertainment's that they lost their heads. The Chamber of Commerce of Tokyo greeted our Chamber of Commerce representatives at an elaborate theatre party. An especially staged Japanese drama, followed by a comedy, with a sumptuous dinner between the acts, was only a part of the entertainment. A. I. Esberg and Byron Mauzy answered the banzis, of the oldest merchant in Japan, Baron Okura, with three rousing cheers for the Japanese, after the formal addresses had been made.
Everywhere we were met with politeness and courtesy. To the casual observer the military element is not noticeable in the home life of the common people, as they are rapt in their work, very industrious and get their pleasure talking to their ever present babies, or tending some little plants, even if squalor surrounds them. But the word of the ones higher up is absolute law to them. Discipline is supreme from the time the small boy is taught the "Goose Step," preparatory to his military training, until he obediently marries the girl his parents have selected for him. He does what he is told without a murmur, as does his wife who is his absolute slave.
One understands why some call Japan the Germany of the East, which country, some of our delegates were told by foreign residents, Japan greatly admires. It is said that her people were more than surprised and disappointed when the armistice was signed; as the Japanese press was so well censored it gave no indication that Germany could be defeated.
After a day of sight-seeing, and investigating various trade conditions, our party found the rickshaw ride back to the hotel, at dusk, most interesting and quite exciting, if one has not become accustomed to the rule of turning to the left instead of the right, as we do at home. Packed street cars, automobiles, carts piled high with incredible loads pulled by coolies, a girder being dragged by a scrawny horse led by a seemingly tireless, whip-equipped native, all apparently were about to collide with our rick-shaw party. We seemed to be always in the way and always on the wrong side of the street. We remembered with a shudder, that the Japanese believe it noble to die, and seemingly, they were going to drag us to destruction with them. We tried to get them to go slower but could not think of the Japanese words, so we might just as well have tried to stop the North wind, as to have changed the orders given by our interpreter to the coolies.
We did not know that when we boarded the special train chartered by the Tokyo Chamber of Commerce to take the San Francisco Chamber of Commerce representatives to inspect the silk filatures, that a delightful luncheon, or as it is called there, "Tiffin," was awaiting us under the trees.
Although the heat was oppressive, it was surprising to see how ceaselessly, and apparently without pain, little girls from twelve years up, kept five cocoons unrolling at once, in boiling water, in order to make a single thread of silk. We were told that these girls worked from twelve to fourteen hours a day, for which they receive forty cents a day and food, getting a bonus at the end of the year, which amounts to approximately one months' salary. Sundays are not holidays in Japan, but workers have two days off a month.
We saw the whole process, from the sorting of the yellow and white cocoons to the huge bolts ready for the market, while one of our smiling hosts significantly remarked, "The yellow and white blend very nicely together."
We were interested in learning that the principal owner of this huge plant has adopted his wife's family name in order to follow the custom of not allowing a family name to die out, in case there are no sons and none have been adopted.
As over one-third of Japan's trade is with the United States, and a large portion of that is in silk, our clever hosts had printed on the cover of the booklet presented to us, "Silk is the shining cord that binds United States and Japan."
The San Francisco Chamber of Commerce representatives had been given the year book of Japan, all sorts of pamphlets containing figures and facts concerning various enterprises, and so a day at Nikko, away from statistics, was most welcome.
Nikko's sacred grove of Cryptomerie trees said to be over three hundred years old, never looked more impressive than in the first rain we had had while in Japan. One of the party who had traveled extensively in the Orient previously, advised us to forget our trade commercial mission long enough to see Nikko and then we could afford to overlook all the other temples. Certainly nature and man's art achieved a double triumph here, and this advice must have piqued the curiosity of most of the stolid businessmen of the party; for yellow strips of rubber and paper umbrellas were rented, and in spite of the downpour, the great stairs were mounted. Even comfy shoes were parted with in order to tread upon the cold marble floors of the ancient temples. We now know, shoes have to be checked with umbrellas at the outer doors in Japan.
We were not the only ones seeing Nikko at eight A. M. in the storm. Besides the groups of soldiers and the crowds of pilgrims from all over Japan, there was the ceaseless click-click of the wooden shoes of thousands of children on the stone steps.
When we left the cozy dining-room of the hotel with its charming outlook upon a mossy bank, where quaint shrubs were flourishing, we felt quite proud of ourselves for braving the weather, until we asked our guide why so many children were there that day. He said, "You see, it is such a fine day for an excursion, not too hot or cold, no one notices the rain."
On the way to the train we saw a queer old pawn shop, filled with wonderful antiques. Some of the party claim that the shop was bought out, so some of our San Francisco relatives will get an inkling from this where Santa Claus may have gotten some of their Christmas presents.
Most of us did not mind being scolded for over-paying our sweating rick-shaw coolies, but we all felt rather uncomfortable when we were told that we should never have paid the first price asked in any of the shops, and that our prize purchases could probably have been bought for half the price by a clever bargainer.
In a corner of the car, that was taking the San Francisco Chamber of Commerce party to Kyoto, the heart of Japan, sat a little Japanese girl in true Buddha style with her little toes crossed, filling her pipe from her purse and taking the usual three puffs (that is about all these pipes hold). She looked about fifteen, but must have been nineteen, because, in Japan no one is allowed to smoke until that age has been attained, and no native would think of breaking a rule.
We arrived in time for the Jidai Festival, which is held only once a year. We saw a procession showing all the phantastic costumes worn by the old-time tribal warriors, and it proved so interesting that we decided not to mourn the fact that the cherry blossom celebration was out of season. We felt much better, too, when we were reminded that all the pilgrims, coming to feast their eyes, never get a taste of the luscious fruit, the Japanese cherries being uneatable.
We were told that all prices were raised by the storekeepers when any convention arrived in town. Some of us successfully resisted purchasing cloissone, and satsuma ware, although we saw it being made and were served with tea and coaxed to buy - "Justa leetle souvenir." But the kimonos were too much for Mrs. Carrie Schwabacher and Louis Mooser, who, in spite of the fact that Mrs. Rockefeller was in Kyoto bidding on some of the same garments (which of course raised the prices even higher) carried away the prettiest garments in the shops.
Our party could not help noticing, how much the Japanese people, even of the lowest class, appreciate their temples and statues.
One of the party asked if anyone knew a person in San Francisco, with the possible exception of some scholarly teacher, who could describe even imperfectly the statues in Golden Gate Park. Here the Japanese journey miles to see a statue. The old scholars always preached the potency of something half concealed to stimulate the imagination, but it took a Japanese sage to conceive the idea of building a fine statue of a favorite war hero and then to bury it. And now thousands come to Kyoto to the very spot where the statue is buried, imagining its proportions, and praying for strength and success in their encounters.
We were told that the belief that the Emperor is a God-like being is strengthened by the fact that he is never seen and therefore his people's glorified imagery of him is never shattered. We were told that the Emperor is seen only by a carefully selected group twice a year, once at the Cherry Blossom season and once at the Chrysanthemum Festival, and if it rains on these days the reception is put off for another year.
Why, the mystery of the Orient was even found in our menus, and it did not take long for the Pandoras of our party to find out that "Bubble and Squeak" was good old ham and eggs and "Angels under Cover" were oysters wrapped in bacon.
After official business was over for the day, the party "did" Theatre Street, where our own movie queens reigned beside some poster depicting a Japanese soldier fighting a dragon. Byron Mauzy told us that our jazz music is often called for and that pianos with a specially made case to withstand the dampness, were in demand.
Our party found out why someone said, "There is as much red-tape necessary to go through a Japanese palace as there is to get married," for we faced the grim-armed soldiers at the outer gates, but were not allowed to enter until our credentials had been carefully inspected. Then we were permitted to go into a small outer room where we wrote our names, addresses, etc., in a large book. After a scrutiny of this and a long wait, giving them sufficient time to telephone and see if our passes were authentic, we were formally escorted through beautifully carved portals, past endless, handsomely decorated, empty rooms, over the squeaky door sill (that is supposed to warn the inmates of someone's approach) and finally to the canopied gold-mounted throne itself.
We began to feel a little easier, when we got out in the sun of the garden, but even there we felt formal, for in these sacred gardens no gay flower or dashing stream is permitted. Nature, too, must be subdued, and even the little trickle of water circling the buildings, was there for the sole purpose of suggesting purity, we were informed.
After the reception and investigation tour of Kobe, forty of the party boarded a train for Peking, under the direction of Hoover's representative, F. R. Eldridge.
We had enjoyed Fujiyama by moonlight, but did not know that we were also to glide by the Inland Sea at sunset. Korea's roads, built of course, by the Japanese soldiers, and the guarded stations of Manchuria, were of much interest to the San Francisco Chamber of Commerce investigators.
Every evening impromptu speeches on conditions were held in the dining car. M. A. Gale, Henry S. Bridge, and Louis Mooser also vied with each other telling funny stories, Carl Westerfeld contributing to the entertainment by organizing a group of the party into "The South Manchurian Quartet." Dave and Resse Lewellyn started to sing "Annie Rooney" and "Mother McCree" whenever things were too quiet.
We stopped long enough at Seoul, Korea, to talk to representatives of trade and commerce and to chat with the "Grand Old Man of Korea," before arriving in Peking.
Our stay in three-thousand year-old Peking was too short, for besides investigating conditions, attending our Minister Shurman's reception, visiting the country home of the former Prime Minister Hsuing Hsi-Ling, we would have enjoyed spending more time seeing The Summer Palace, The Jade Fountain and the Temple of Heaven to say nothing of studying conditions.
About one-thirty, when the gay dance had ended at Hotel de Peking, which by the way, would be a credit to London or New York, we took an hour's rickshaw ride in the moonlight to the Forbidden City. The solemn pom-pom-pom of the funeral dirge for the Mother of the heir to the Chinese Throne, was indescribably impressive. About eighty men bore the casket from the dwelling to its canopied hearse. One of the mourner's told us that the fourteen-year-old heir to the throne, had not cared much, when all his playthings were taken from him, or even when his throne was taken, but that now he was inconsolable over the loss of his mother.
After seeing this weird funeral procession of the last of the Ming Dynasty in the gray of early dawn, seeing a Buddha with eyes of pure gold, and also riding the Hodzu rapids, it took an aeroplane ride to create any real excitement in our party.
Six of the Chamber of Commerce Representatives decided to see the Great Wall of China and the Ming Tombs, regardless of the lack of time; so Carl Westerfeld, Mrs. Bruce Foulkes, David and Reese Lewellyn, Miss Mary Moynihan and M. Hazlett, Jr., chartered a Vickers Vimmy Biplane. The air-riders felt much less perturbation after being informed that this machine cost the Chinese government fifty thousand dollars, weighed over five tons, and had comfortable wicker seats in a pretty little cabin for nine people. They were so proud to accomplish in an hour and a half, a trip which usually takes two days, that we will tell some of them that they have not come down to earth yet, if they keep on telling us what we missed by not going.
We had no sooner gotten accustomed to the Japanese money and were able to say, "Ohio," (good-morning), and a few other Japanese words glibly, when we had to learn "Pidgin English" and use the "Mex" dollar in China, and next we were told to exchange our money from Peking notes to Shanghai currency.
The approach to Shanghai, the Paris of the East, along its beautiful row of buildings on the waterfront, and called The Bund, surprised even the muchly thrilled Chamber of Commerce Party.
The American Consul, C. T. Cunningham, was very ill, but his wife gave us a reception. A dinner by the Chinese Chamber of Commerce and an examination of trade exhibits followed.
The six physicians of the party received their biggest surprise at the Chinese Theatre when, in the middle of the performance, a large towel that had evidently been dipped in warm water, was passed around to the audience so that the theatre-goers might wipe off the perspiration or beads of excitement from their faces and hands. The towel was a rich shade of brown by the time it reached our party. Germs? Why they never thought of such a thing and seem to feel, "Where ignorance is bliss, 'tis folly to be wise."
If Shanghai thrilled us, Hongkong fascinated us, when we ascended in a railroad something like our Tamalpais cars to the peak. To reach the very top, cozy wicker chairs, mounted on bamboo poles, carried by two coolies, are necessary. The movement of the chair while descending reminds one of a ride on a rather old, single-gaited horse.
Our party will always associate Macao, China, with "Dante's Inferno." To see the half-clothed Chinese bending over their open fires in the opium factory, to see children soldering the covers of the little boxes their brothers have just finished mixing and filling, will always be an awful, vivid picture in our memories.
The cigar factory also seemed a fine sample of what some good people wish us to believe awaits the wicked. Babies, not able to walk, are busy working beside their mothers stripping the tobacco leaf from the stems.
If the cigar and opium factories shocked us, the firecracker factory appalled us. A crowd of youngsters huddled in a tiny, filthy room filled with powder, were working with wonderful dexterity, ceaselessly putting fuses in firecrackers. No one seemed to notice or care if a visitor might carelessly let a light fall from a cigar or drop a match. Many of us decided that perhaps the proverb: "If you want to make a Chinese happy, just buy him a coffin," is not so far off, because death to many of them looks much more attractive than life. We were told that if a Chinese falls off his sampan, his neighbor does not try to save him. That would be a "Bad Joss" as they say and would incur the wrath of the River God, who pulled him in. Then, too, the rescuer would have to support him for the rest of his days.
The Homeward Trip Chapter VIII
The Stop at Singapore
They say that anticipation is half of enjoyment, but the Chamber of Commerce Party never could have imagined the pleasure we were to have in Singapore, although the expected palms waved greetings from the shore as an indication of the tropical scenes we were to see.
We had heard it said that, "He who tries to hurry the Orient shall come to a speedy grave," and we thought there must be some truth in it, when at the junction of two busy streets we saw a lazy native peacefully reposing, on his cot bed, in the middle of two lines of traffic. Nice quiet spot for a nap, while the sun was beating down with such force that the men of the party drew their new helmets well down over their heads. Stanley, exploring darkest Africa, could not have heard more precautions and sunstroke warnings, than the men of this party. But the guide-book authors do not seem to care whether the sun strikes the women or not. Guess they believe that the women's hair will protect them, or, perhaps, it is reasoned, that as the ships usually touch China first, (one of the greatest hair markets of the world), the women cheated by nature, are supposed to have gotten a goodly supply before they reach Singapore.
But do not let this give our friends the idea that the women were neglected in Singapore. They say there are only three unmarried white girls left in that city and that these are taking their time about deciding upon which of the army of males they will select. One fine looking chap told a group of ladies of our party that it was two months before he learned that in order to secure dances with the popular matrons, it was necessary to phone the week before the dance to find out whether he was to be favored with the sixth or seventh or ninth dance.
Now before any girl who chances to read the foregoing and packs her trunks for this tropical spot, let me warn her that it is so hot that the powder stays on about as well as water on a duck's back, and a lizard is liable to drop in her lap at any time. At least that is what happened to the smallest debutante of our party, Miss Sallie Glide, at one of the dances given in honor of the San Francisco Delegates. And while some of the young couples of our party were strolling through the wonderful botanical gardens admiring the Travelers Palm, whose fan-shaped branches are said to be the compass of the desert, as their branches always point east and West, a family of wild monkeys (with the baby monkeys clinging to the mothers' breasts) crossed the path. And a little further on a snake charmer giving his cobras an airing, was encountered. If the element of danger appeals to her, then this is the place for her, for she may expect to see one of these big snakes unaccompanied by its master at any time if she ventures in the thicket. And just a short trip out of the city is the tiger in his native jungle. Phil Lyon and Carl Westerfeld went on a hunt, but H. J. Judell came nearest to killing one. He shot between the eyes, as the guide directed, but missed the brute.
The variety and brilliancy of the clothing of the cosmopolitan inhabitants rivals the scarlets and greens of the botanical gardens. The natives, perhaps, try to make up in vivid coloring what they lack in quantity. Others are entirely unadorned and most of the children are also naked.
Alfred Esberg, C. B. Lastrete, Dwight Grady and J. Parker-Currier were given a dinner at the executive mansion of the English governor, Sir Laurence Guillemard. This was the first time that American travelers were so honored.
The Chinese Chamber of Commerce gave a beautiful reception to our party. As we entered the banquet hall, the band played the "Star Spangled Banner" and the moving picture machine recorded our activities. Speeches were made and conditions discussed, while the champagne flowed freely. The ladies were given orchids.
Someone remarked that the white people in Singapore seem bent on checking the over-powering heat with internal irrigation. At eleven A. M. all assemble at a special resort for the morning "eye-openers," between twelve and two, business stops in order to give the thirsty inhabitants time for tiffin accompanied by a half dozen whiskeys and sodas or "gin-rickeys"; after four all business ceases for tea, and, if the tea cup appears it is usually accompanied by a substantial stick in it, to rouse drooping spirits. Of course during dinner and the evening Bacchus reigns. Now, I suppose some of you understand why there are so many apparently contented men in Singapore, in spite of the climate.
All the lovers that were accustomed to haunt the top deck, called the "Honey-moon Deck of the Empire State," took rides through the jungle. The tropical moonlight reflecting the palms in the rippling water and the trip through the Gap (a break in the hills disclosing the sea far beyond, as one of the justly famous sunsets was in progress), are said to have done their work, and four couples, the gossips say, are expected to announce their engagements. One of the ship's wits said, "Again the dashing widows have proven far more attractive than some of their unmarried sisters." Mrs. Carrie Schwabacher, offered a linen shower to the first couple that were married on board, but they all seemed bashful. Louis Mooser suggested that the name of the ship be changed from Empire State to "Vampire State."
Some of our party visited homes in Singapore and found one solution of the "servant problem." In many cases, the mistress of the house pays a No. 1 boy, or upper servant, as you know they call them there, a fixed sum to purchase so many meals and to take the entire responsibility of the buying and running of the house, while she comes and goes and entertains as a guest at a hotel. There are no unexpected huge bills at the end of the month; if the cook leaves, why should she worry, No. 1 boy just gets another.
Some of the Chamber of Commerce party were frank enough to admit that their most vivid recollections of hearing about Java were, in connection with Moca, together with eggs and toast and the usual accompaniments of the breakfast table, but we were all in for a revelation. The cultivation of the hillsides in Japan is child's play in comparison with the miles upon miles of hills, plateaus and even mountains, all in flourishing rice fields, coffee plantations and sugarcane.
One can now realize what the late Premier Hara of Japan meant, when he is said to have admitted to some intimates that there was no over-population in Japan if only fifteen percent of the vast tracts (61 percent of all Japan) were utilized (as it is in Java), enough space for Japan's growing population could easily be found. It is said that the Japanese Emperor and his advisers will never dispose of this land or allow it to be used.
Our party separated over the land of Java, like the forty tribes of Biblical history. Some went to the famous ruins of Bora Badur erected ages ago, some to Djorka to see the native dances and to see the strange old walled city, where the Sultan, his wives and the fifteen thousand natives, said to be related to him, live. While the Sultan and his harem are seated, cross-legged on the floor, with the Dutch Queen's pictures looking sternly down upon them, the ever waiting counselors of the Sultan squat outside the sacred precincts. These wise-looking old counselors of the Sultan also have their retinue of servants waiting on them - one with a pipe, another with a pillow, still another with a fan, etc., etc. Our delegation was especially honored in being permitted to go in the sacred place where the ancient bedroom is situated. We even spied some harem beauties in the distance.
Those of the party desiring a complete change from the sea, went to the picturesque resort of Garot, perched high up near a volcano. Many of the businessmen stayed right in Batavia to study business conditions. Still others went to the Botanical gardens of Boetenzorg and to see wonderful scenery near Bandoeng, but all attended the ball given for us the night we departed at Batavia.
In starting out in any vehicle in the tropics we were all taken miles out of our way. The drivers never attempted to find out where one wished to go, or listened to one if one tried to make them understand. They start off with a flourish, usually in the wrong direction, before they can be stopped. It makes no difference to them. They know they are hired and that is all they care about. Perhaps this is one reason why Charles Yates unfortunately missed the ship. Constant Meese found the streets apparently deserted one night when our party wished transportation back to the ships but by clapping his hands together, half a dozen rick-shaws came tumbling over each other to get there first. Sometimes the clapping of the hands is not enough to attract the native's attention, as he rarely listens to orders; some of the party say they have found the typical tourist's cane most effective and think they have discovered a real reason for a cane at last.
At Batavia the well-known Captain Edward Salisbury left his world-touring yacht "Wisdom," to join our party. He entertained us in the evenings with weird tales of his adventures in the South Seas, where pigs are exchanged for wives and the wives thus acquired are then put to work to raise more pigs to get new wives.
Good students of geography will doubtless recall that the approach to Saigon is through the crookedest river in the world. As I usually "just passed" in this subject, cannot speak with authority, but I will guarantee that it has many more curves than our Tamalpais railroad, advertised all over as being "The crookedest railway on the globe."
So the members of the San Francisco Chamber of Commerce tour were busy speculating on just how many turns and twists the Empire State had made before she finally docked at Saigon, when some members of the Saigon Reception committee told us that we were the largest American steamship that ever had landed in port.
Two large busses were placed at the disposal of our delegation. The Cercle Sportivo gave a dance at their club in our honor and two tea dansants were held at the Continental Hotel. Some of the ladies got quite accustomed to the bags of mosquito netting that one slips one's feet in, to evade the pests while dining, but most of us forget to step out, and, for a moment, thought we were in a sack race.
The elephant at the beautiful botanical gardens, that would go and buy himself food when given the proper amount of money was interesting, but he was not the real attraction at Saigon. Our party had been entertained by the Geisha girls, sung almost to distraction (you know it is impolite for the sing-song girls of China to stop singing until requested to stop). We had watched the dancing of the Javanese and Philippine Ballerinas, but, we had to come here to see the real French girls. We now understand why many of our soldiers came home with French wives - "vamp" is the only word we could think of in describing every one of them. Never before had we seen so many picture hats.
What fun we all had airing our moth-eaten French. (Here I am not referring to the few of our party that speak French fluently.) And it was several days before some of us stopped calling the Chinese cabin-boys "Garcon."
Perhaps, to show that the San Francisco committee appreciated the distinction of being on board a ship fifteen feet longer than any other American steamer to make that port, we broke off part of the propeller as a souvenir in departing.
Never were more elaborate preparations made to receive our big delegation. Some said it was a wise precaution to have the day the Philippine Chamber of Commerce were to entertain us before the publishing of the "Wood-Forbes Report;" but after the report had been made public we found the laughter and shouts of "Viva" (long life) from the children and the heartfelt greetings of their elders, were cordiality and good-fellowship personified.
We were told that there were three times the number of people in Java as in the Philippines, but that the Philippines could easily support a population of 50,000,000. We were so glad to hear this, as there are more babies there than any other place in the Orient, with the exception of Japan, but the Philippine babies seem to be free from the awful sores we noted on many of the Japanese children. However, it seems that infant mortality is great in the Philippines, on account of the improper diet of the mothers and many of the babies die, we were told, as their mother's milk does not agree with them. One of the first orders of Governor-General Leonard Wood was to call a meeting to check the infant mortality.
In an interview, just after the "Wood-Forbes Report" had been published, Governor Leonard Wood said, "I look for great things from the women of the Philippines; the quicker they form a part of the Government, the better for the Islands." He seems to feel that they are the most important factor in the islands and considers them more dependable than the men. He told with great satisfaction how he had arranged for Miss Hartlee Emprey (the research worker from the Rockefeller Hospital at Peking, who succeeded in perfecting a four-cent-a-day diet for the famine-stricken in China) to eliminate the malnutrition in the food for the young Philippine mothers and to discover a better diet for the lepers. Governor Wood added, "I want doctors, lots of them, modern equipment' and nurses to make more sanitary conditions. I also wish the diseases destructive to cattle studied." There are only 930 nurses in the islands and funds and equipment are needed badly. More doctors are needed in curing the lepers. In speaking of the present condition of the islands, he said, "The Philippines are not ready to cut loose from the United States."
Everything was done in Manila to make us feel at home, from the moment the Reception Committee landed on board and Mayor Fernandez handed over the keys of the city. After being entertained by the Chinese, Philippine, Spanish and American Chambers of Commerce and being told that there were countless dialects and language mixtures, we were not surprised that a telephone operator must speak at least nine languages.
The Montalban Falls trip, as guests of the Philippine Chamber of Commerce, made us recall the days of 1915, for there the same leader of the Philippine Orchestra at the Exposition, greeted us. We passed through a flower-decorated arch and then beneath a specially constructed bower under which were the charmingly set tables for our "tiffin."
The second day in Manila we were taken to the Pampanga Sugar Refinery. Here the men of the party had lengthy talks with the officials, while the women of the party were being entertained at a luncheon. The ladies were told that the American factory girl who spends the best part of her week's wages for silk stockings has her equal in the Philippines. It seems that the natives (yes, the men too) are so fond of showy clothing that they will go buy some fancy trifle, when they are in need of food. Very often the employer has to feed them so as to be sure they will have strength enough to do their work properly. It seems that many Filipinos regard the United States as a child regards a benevolent uncle - they want their independence knowing that the United States will get them out of any difficulty and protect them from all harm, at the same time, letting them have their own way.
They are so quick to learn it is no wonder that many of our soldiers turned into teachers, just as the soldiers in Russia today are repeating history in this respect.
Members of the local Chamber of Commerce told us that on account of the soil and climate, the sugar matured in seven months instead of eighteen months necessary in the Hawaiian Islands, and that in one day, the refinery (we inspected) could turn out 20,000 tons of sugar, enough to supply San Francisco for one year (the help working on two ten-hour shifts and receiving one and a half pesos a day a piece).
Although the pineapples have been imported from the Hawaiian Islands to the Philippines, they are not subject to the blight that affects them there; they have a wonderfully sweet flavor. An increase of a million dollars in the industry has recently been reported, our party was told.
The third day we were taken to Pagsanjan Rapids, where the party left in small canoes through a scenic gorge. Mrs. Francis Krull, George Vranizan and Mrs. Vranizan, Mrs. Bruce Foulkes, S. Swartz and Mrs. Swartz, Harry Dana, Frank Howlett, A. I. Esberg and his wife were all thrown out of the boats and into the swift current, but all were rescued in time. Dr. F. E. Orella introduced the first woman lawyer in Manila, and she addressed us in the observation car, on the way back from the Falls.
We passed miles of beautiful groves and were told on the way back to Manila, that each tree averaged about fifty cocoanuts a year, but that one tree has been known to yield three hundred nuts, and that a new breakfast food, made from them, is about to revolutionize the morning meal. Also we heard that no longer will it be necessary to go to the tropics to enjoy the mango, for a new process has at last been discovered that will permit of their being canned. We were told that the natives carry long knives and often use them and that someone said, "Although they may be dressed in the latest style from toes to head, they are still savages from the waist up." This seems difficult to believe, in spite of the numerous scars one sees, as one could not but feel friendly toward the Filipinos. Their courtesy is typified in their road signs that we passed, "Slow please," and after the curve was rounded, "Thank you."
We all noticed how clean and neat their appearance was. You know it is said that the Japanese keep their bodies clean, but not their clothes, while the Koreans keep their clothes clean (perhaps because they are white and the dirt is so evident), and not their bodies, that the Chinese keep neither their clothes nor their bodies clean, but the Filipinos keep both, their bodies and their clothes, immaculate.
One of our party asked one of our hosts. "Why he never said, 'right' and 'left', in directing the chauffeur." The answer was that in the old days the footman's seat was on the left horse, hence 'cella' for left, while the driver held his reins in his right hand, therefore 'mono' (or hand) means right to the Filipinos.
Reese Lewellyn said, as did most of the Americans in the Islands, "That the United States should never give up the Philippine Islands, as they are a necessary base for America's importing and exporting." He said, "Although, before I made this trip, I was not in favor of the United States holding outside territory, I now realize that we must keep the Philippines as an outlet for our supplies. In a diplomatic way the Filipinos will have to be made to realize that, in spite of the fact that they have been told they would be independent of United States, conditions warrant our keeping them as a part of the United States."
Our first impression of the native women was that they were all going to some ball or had put on their low-necked, transparent evening dresses by mistake. But, before any reader gets the impression from this that they are immodest, let me hasten to add that we found that they were exceptionally sweet and charming and are the souls of propriety. Why, even the man engaged to a girl cannot so much as walk with her on the streets in the broad daylight, and to take her arm - Oh, horrors! If a girl should permit two different beaus to call upon her, even if well chaperoned, it would eliminate her matrimonial prospects, as she would then be branded as a hopeless flirt, so we were told.
But, needless to say, the few American girls in Manila do not follow these rules, for we heard that an engagement for tea with one masculine admirer and to watch the oily seola nuts burn at dinner with another friend, and to attend an evening dance with a third, is not considered unusual. After the Philippine women get the suffrage, Governor Leonard Wood seems to want them to have, some of the ladies of our party wonder if things will not be a little different for the native women?
We were escorted through cigar factories, hemp works, and to Bilibid Prison, where from a central reviewing stand, the avenue of cells with the drilling space between, radiate like a great pinwheel. A very elaborate drill was given by the prisoners, who were dressed according to their conduct - white for the best behavior, blue, fairly good, stripes for bad behavior.
Besides the tea dance at the beautiful Spanish Club, the Governor's Reception at the Palace (as it is called here), and the numerous dances, there was a luncheon given to our party at the delightful Manila Hotel by the Rotary Club.
At this function the cablegram to us from Mayor Rolph was read and applauded, as were the messages from former Manager Wood of the St. Francis, and Manager Manwaring of the Palace. After speeches by A. I. Esberg, Byron Mauzy, C. B. Lastreto, Ex-Senator James Phelan, who had just arrived in Manila, made a very interesting and humorous address.
He referred to the time when the war over the Philippines was going on, at which time he was Mayor of San Francisco. He said, "Then we hardly knew where the Philippines were." He dwelt upon the marvelous resources of the Islands and warned us not to be like the old miner, who before the "Days of '49" said that he saw a sign advertising the village that is now San Francisco, for sale for five dollars. When asked, "Why he didn't buy it," he said, "He didn't' have the five dollars, and anyway he didn't want it then."
Governor Wood finished the speeches with a stirring address. "Capital is safe in the Philippines. Take an interest in them," he said. "They are big, there are wonderful resources and there is big work to do here. The American Flag is still at the top of the pole. The progress of the Philippine people in the last twenty-three years cannot be paralleled, it could not have been accomplished without their cooperation and without our aid." He referred to the so-called laws of discouragement that are said to impede business. "I want to get hold of them and correct them, but they cannot be changed in a hurry. The United States stands for the development of trade and the open-door in the Pacific. One of the best piers in the world will be built; the harbor rivals Seattle, and Manila will be a great port and a distributor of the products of the Far East. There is room for expansion, labor is cheap. Germany, the beaten nation, has learned to live without import or export and understands cheap living. Competition will be keen. They are out to gobble up South American trade. We must get busy. The war talk is tommy-rot. Of course there will be wars in the future, but only irresponsible people think of war at present."
Manuel Queson, in a long interview, after the "Wood-Forbes" report was out, said, "I do not agree with the report as the Islands are ready for independence."
Sergio Osmena, referred to as a great power and known as the "Sphinx of the Philippines," was reticent at first, but later he talked freely about the marvelous resources of the Islands and stated that he, too, believed the Islands ready for independence.
Returning from Manila we stopped once more at "The City of Mist," Hongkong, and were entertained all over again. While some of the Chamber of Commerce party were motoring to a dance given in honor of the San Francisco delegates, a coolie was hit and nearly run over. Our host told the coolie to get out of the way, while assuring us that it would not have caused much trouble had he been severely injured. He said, "Labor is so cheap here, some coolies try to get hit to get something out of you, and if I had really run over him, I would have given him fifty cents, or so. You know there is a law that if a Chinese accepts any amount of money after being injured, he has no redress." He went on to tell a story about using Chinese women to retrieve instead of dogs in snipe shooting. If these coolie women happen to stand up and get a stray shot, a few cents is given them, and it is called "square." One of the husbands of these women retrievers needed money, so his wife stood up in order to get a lot of shots. She got seven shots and went away with her husband rejoicing upon receipt of five dollars.
It was like meeting someone from home when Mrs. H. W. Thomas and Mrs. Cudahy joined our party again.
Many of our party looked for the American flag at our consulate, and H. L. Judell said he could not buy one in all of British Hongkong.
The feeling against the Germans in Hongkong, many of our party decided, must be very strong, as we saw cartoons showing a fierce-looking person killing everyone, and the same person in another pose, dressed as a traveling salesman, together with the warning, "Remember they are one and the same." We also noted sentiment against the Japanese in China, for instance, a Chinese gentleman told a group of our party that he and many of his countrymen taught their children that someday they would fight the Japanese. We were told that if a Chinese child is given a piece of candy and then told that the candy was made in Japan, the child refuses to eat it. This just typifies the attitude we found in China towards the Japanese. But as Dr. Kasper Pischel said at one of our evening meetings, "The spirit of China is not dead but is very much alive in Canton. Where the guidebooks discussed the narrow streets, to small even for rickshaws, I found twenty miles of broad streets. Where I anticipated hovels, a twelve-story skyscraper was seen, and it is my belief that unscrupulous outsiders are trying to keep the old political power in Peking."
Leaving Hongkong, we passed the typhoon shelter on the bay with its hundreds of floating homes. Next we noted the numerous curved graves (evil spirits, we were told, would not attack curved lines) and that all the graves faced the rice fields and the water for good luck. It seems that once a year, the relatives come with a big feast, and after waiting two hours for the spirits to eat, the mourners "fall to" and devour it themselves. The sacred mountain that resembles an amah and child, where the expectant Chinese mothers come to pray for male babies, was seen in the distance, as was the inlet of the bay, which, according to legend, was the original location of the Garden of Eden. Some members of the party considered this region much more beautiful than the Inland Sea of Japan.
Many of the party could not understand what the tall buildings in all the small villages could be. The fluent-talking Chinese officials, sent to escort our party, informed us that they were the pawnshops, and the wealth of the villages is determined by the number of their pawnshops, it being quite an honorable business in China, and all the inhabitants put their winter clothes in pawn. If, when they redeem this clothing, an epidemic of disease occurs, no one seems to think it might be because the clothes of all are put together unfumigated.
We were discussing the odd names on the official program when we were told that besides meeting a Mr. Looking For, a Mr. Jack Rabbitt was to follow the first speaker at the coming luncheon. We heard all about Ho Fook, with his fourteen wives and fifty-six children, and how Wang Chong Hin had just made a million in Java, raising sugar cane; that fat worms were considered a great treat, as were portions of rats, cats and dogs, all of these questionable delicacies being on display in the wayside markets.
The Canton reception was by far the most spectacular the Chamber of Commerce party received in the Orient. After the gaily attired band (playing American airs) greeted us, we passed through a brilliantly decorated arch and drove past the business section of Canton to the Yamen of His Excellency, Chan Chuing Ming, the Governor of Kwangtung. Here a reception committee representing the Government of the Republic of China, at Canton, the Provincial Government of Kwangtung, the Canton Municipality, the General Chamber of Commerce at Canton and the American Association of South China gave us a never-to-be-forgotten welcome.
An elaborate Chinese tiffin (yes, we ate a la chop sticks) was served. Governor Chan Chuing Ming, in his opening address, spoke of South China's plan for trade expansion and the development of this vast section. He referred to America's policy of fair play and the "Open Door" in the Orient and said that South China was rapidly becoming a progressive democracy and that the delegation showed its interest in South China by its presence there.
Commissioner Francis Krull, in answering this speech, spoke of the "Heavenly Welcome." This reminded us that besides the bands, military escort, soldiers at salute throughout the streets, auto street sprinkler to keep down the dust in front of the procession, an aeroplane had soared over our heads dropping messages of greeting. Someone suggested that a book on Chinese etiquette should have been studied by all representatives, for, when Mayor Sun, the son of Dr. Sun Yat Sen, head of South China, gave one of the ladies of our party a choice morsel, fished out of the central platter with the spoon with which he as eating, she did not know that his is considered a special mark of favor and accepted it very reluctantly, thinking her host most forgetful.
After eating our fill of bird's nest soup, sharks' fins and bamboo cells, we were taken in motors to see the five-storied Pagoda, the City of the Dead, and the monument to the Chinese revolutionary heroes (donated by the Chinese all over the world). When we saw one huge slab donated by some Chinese in San Francisco, we did feel toward the intelligent, kindly people just as our cultured host and hostess put it, "Right at home with them."
The General Chamber of Commerce gave a dinner at the Asia Hotel to the businessmen of the party, while the Chinese ladies gave a twelve-course dinner on the top floor of one of their new skyscrapers. This is said to be the first time in Chinese history that the sheltered and seldom seen Chinese ladies of rank ever gave a dinner to any, traveling delegation. Their correctly spoken English, charming graciousness, and, in a few cases, rare beauty, would make any collection of American women look, to their laurels.
Another typically Chinese dinner was given for us where James H. Henry, an American living in Canton, made the best speech we had heard in the Orient. He laid stress upon the fact that we need China more than she needs the United States. As other nations are studying her people and her resources we are letting things drift. He said, "United States is pursuing the same stupid psychology that originally caused England to lose her trade in China to the painstaking, persistent Germans. There are few Americans that can name readily six Chinese cities. China favors America because she stands for Liberty, Fraternity, Equality and Fair Play, but that her favoring the United States is more negative than positive as the United States is doing nothing to cultivate her trade and her favor is more on account of what Americans stand for but have not done as yet. Americans had better get busy and do something positive to develop her trade as do the other nations. The French are importing Chinese to study in France and in order to get to know the French and like them. The Germans come and live among the Chinese to learn their ways and to secure their friendship. China is going forward."
Perhaps some would say several of our party should have heeded the warnings of the blind astrologers, so plentiful in China, or stopped joking when we received number thirteen for dinner cards, hat checks and auto drivers' checks, but, strange as it may seem, on the very day that we were joking about the prevalence of "number 13" we had a very narrow escape. At any rate the most beloved member of the party, Mrs. Carrie Schwabacker (affectionately known as "Mother McCree"), nearly lost her life. Harry Dana, Cleve T. Shaffer and the writer, were with her in the small motor boat, returning from an entertainment given at a Chinese banker's home on the Pearl River (we were sure they referred to a black pearl when they named it, as the water looked like ink) and the craft became stuck in the mud and the propeller was impeded. The big river steamer, which we were due to catch, waited twenty minutes for us and when we finally got alongside the steamer, the Chinese boatman tied us to it as it was starting, in spite of our protests. Naturally, the little boat was dragged underneath the large rapidly moving steamer. One of the boatmen was thrown overboard. By desperate efforts we were saved from capsizing and the little boat broke loose from the steamer bearing her down, so we did not catch up with the party until a day later.
If Neptune Day was a huge success, then "Sanguinetti's Night" was a triumph. The old "Frisco Restaurant" reappeared on board ship, cartoons were on the walls (cleverly drawn by Miss Marion Doolan), the floor was sawdust covered. Red ties, stockings and skirts were in demand. Mrs. Evan's brilliant scarf made one costume for the borrower, everyone looked unbelievably tough in the costumes appropriate for this Italian affair. Candles gave a dim light. There were samples of "Apache Dancing." Spaghetti and ravioli were enjoyed along with the red wine that flowed freely, while the orchestra played only Italian and "Jazz" pieces. Will anyone ever forget Mrs. Schwartz's wonderful rendition of the "Lost Italian girl?" Miss Schlessinger won the prize for being the best "Vamp."
In the smoking room and on deck, Mah Gongg, for awhile, vied with bridge, but the old standby (enlivened with prizes) proved more popular on the homeward trip. If noise was any indication, then the last few days, when the deck sport prizes were being played for, were hugely enjoyed by all. Capt. E. Salisbury, C. J. Okell, S. N. Haslett, Jr. and H. S. Dana were among the star players. Dr. Woolsey and J. F. Geise were also "fans."
Christmas will always be another happy memory. The carols, the marching around the ship of the choristers Christmas Eve, the services and the story of Christmas by Mrs. Barton gave a contrast of seriousness that made us appreciate the frivolities all the more. How cheery the dining room was with its garlands of red berries and huge Christmas tree, swaying with the motion of the ship, and what fun when jovial and popular Captain Nelson, as Santa Claus gave a present to all. How surprised and happy the Captain, the officers and Mr. Grady were when Warren Shannon presented them with the beautiful gifts purchased by our party. Everyone was coaxed to display their "parlor tricks." Warren Shannon gave his masterpiece "Tiger Fat," Reese Lewellyn sang, followed by Mrs. Schwabacker's charming rendition of "What Irishmen Mean by McCree," Dr. Thomas Hill recited cleverly, Mrs. Brandeis read the farewell poem she had written, Mrs. Brown sang beautifully. Will we ever see a Korean costume without thinking of Louis Mooser and the excellent resolutions of thanks he drew and how he regretted the loss of his first diary? If it was half as clever as the second diary we can well understand his feelings. The laughter, singing and dancing kept up until way past midnight. No wonder everyone seemed in the best of health and spirits after this wonderful tour.
Last Few Days of Trip
The women of the party, led by Mrs. Frank Panter, gave a vote of thanks for being permitted to be a part of such an important tour penetrating an area where 900,000,000 souls are living, and wrote a resolution to the San Francisco Chamber of Commerce to that effect. It was up to the women to send "the last word" from the party, as Ou Wee of Canton, said, "The women of America are the real dictators,' 'and since the days of Eve, every man knows that women must have the "last word." But after seeing the treatment of the Oriental women, all the party of the feminine gender, were doubly glad to be Americans and to be going home.
We all understand the meaning of the phrase, "The best part of going away is the coming back," and when we contemplated that the famous "Peace Ship" could only stand it for three days, we felt quite pleased with our three months' record of friendly relationship, not only with our associates on board ship, but also with all those of the Orient, on this, the First Commercial Relationship Tour that any Chamber of Commerce has ever attempted and successfully accomplished.
Mrs. R. S. Atkins Mr. D. K. Grady Mrs. George Alexander Mrs. D. K. Grady Mr. F. S. Ballinger Miss Elizabeth M. Graham Mrs. F. S. Ballinger Mr. S. M. Haslett. Jr. Mrs. Florence Barnard Mr. H. Hastings Mrs. Louise Barton Dr. T. L. Hill Miss Lucille Bell Mr. C. W. Hinchcliffe Mrs. M. S. Bercovich Mr. Frank Howlett Mr. Fred W. Boole Mrs. Frank Howlett Mrs. Fred W. Boole Miss Elizabeth Howlett Mrs. Arthur Brandeis Mr. Frank Howlett, Jr. Mr. Henry S. Bridge Miss Flora Hunter Mrs. Henry S. Bridge Miss Alena Hunter Miss Marjorie Bridge Mr. Louis James Miss Barbara Bridge Mrs. Louis James Mr. Louis C. Brown Mr. Chas. H. James Mrs. Louis C. Brown Mrs. Chas. H. James Mr. Roy J. Chapman Miss Rosalie T. James Miss Jessie Craig Dr. M. J. Judell Mr. J. Parker Currier Mr. H. L. Judell Mrs. J. Parker Currier Sidney P. Kahn Mrs. A. M. Cudahy Miss R. Kinslow Mr. H. S. Dana Mr. Francis KruIl Mrs. S. C. Denson Mrs. Francis Krull Mrs. E. Dinkelspiel Mr. C. B. Lastreto Miss Marian Doolan Mrs. C. B. Lastreto Mrs. Jas. P. Dunne Mrs. R. R. Livingston Miss Louise Elliott Mr. D. L. Llewllyn Mr. A. I. Esberg Mr. Reese Llewllyn Mrs. A. I. Esberg Mr. A. B. Luther Miss Belle Espeset Mrs. A. B. Luther Dr. C. W. Evans Mrs. Anna B. Luther Mrs. C. W. Evans Mr. P. L Lykins Mrs. Bruce Foulkes Mrs. P. L. Lykens Mr. M. A. Gale Mr. P. J. Lyon Mrs. M. A. Gale Mr. C. H. Mattlage Dr. Amelia Gates Mrs. C. H. Mattlage Mrs. Angeline Gee Mr. Byron Mauzy Mrs. J. F. Geise Mr. B. M. McCrory Mr. Louis Glass Mr. Constant Meese Miss Sally Glide Miss Charlotte Moore
Mr. Louis H. Mooser Mrs. S. L. Schwartz Dr. A. W. Morton Miss G. A. Shaffer Mr. A. W. Morton, Jr. Mr. Cleve Shaffer Miss Mary Moynihan Mr. Warren Shannon Mr. Wm. Muir Mrs. Warren Shannon Mr. A. T. Neff Miss Alma Simon Mrs. A. T. Neff Mr. F. H. Speich Miss Lucretia Neff Mrs. F. H. Speich Mr. C. J. Okell Mr. Wm. Symon Mrs. C. J. Okell Mrs. Wm. Symon Dr. F. E. Orella Miss May Slessinger Mrs. F. E. Orella Mr. C. A. Thayer Mr. Frank Panter Mrs. C. A. Thayer Mrs. Frank Panter Mrs. H. W. Thomas Dr. Kaspar Pischel Mr. Geo. Vranizan Mrs. Kaspar Pischel Mrs. Geo. Vranizen Mr. Geo. Russell Reed Mr. Edward C. Wagner Mrs. Geo. Russell Reed Mrs. Edward C. Wagner Miss Frances Reed Mrs. M. S. Washburn Miss Margaret Rice Mr. Carl Westerfeld Captain R. Robinson Mrs. J. D. Wheeler Mrs. L. Ross Mr. Fred J. Wood Mr. Louis Rothenberg Mrs. Fred J. Wood Mrs. Louis Rothenberg Dr. C. H. Woolsey Mrs. Carrie Schwabacher Mr. Chas. Yates Capt. E. Salisbury Mrs. Violet Yates Mr. S. L. Schwartz