"I note the changes mentioned in your letter that have occurred there since the American forces occupied that region in 1900. Also that you have no written record of the events that took place in Nueva Caceres in that distant past, save perhaps the recollection of old timers who number but a few."
"I was a member of Co. K of the 45th U.S. Volunteer regiment, which was one of the organization that operated in that area in 1900-01. We disembarked from our ship in San Miguel Bay, were landed ashore by small boats, fought our way ashore and on to Nueva Caceres, reaching N.C. on February 22, 1900. Damage to this city was saved by the Native Forces retreating to the Pauili River, about twelve miles distant, where they halted and waited for our approach."
"We left Nueva Caceres about 9:30 PM of February 24, halted south of Pili to wait for daylight, then hiked to the river where we expected opposition, but encountered none. The bridge over the river was blown up, so we had to ford it. Then we halted for breakfast, which was interrupted by a man on horse who came along the road from the south, stopped, fired at us with his rifle, then turned and fled. That was an invitation from the Native Troops to come on, as they were waiting to welcome us."
"You know how hilly and rolling the land there east of the road, and as we reached the top of the ridge, on the next to the south were the Native Troops, lined up, ready for the engagement."
"I'll never forget the sight. At the center of their line was a group of men on horses, taken by us to be their Commanding Officer and his staff. One man right on the center was on a white horse and I assumed him to be the Commanding Officer. At that moment, he flanked by his staff, started directly at us as though we were unarmed. Suddenly a rifle shot split the air. I never knew which side fired that shot. But that set off the fireworks, and about fifty of us shot at that man on the white horse, and (horse) and rider fell and rolled down the hill."
"It must have been 6:00 or 7:00 am on Sunday, February 25, when the engagement began and by 11:00 am we had pushed the Native Troops back south, over the prairie land and rolling prairie hills, to a creek back to which the timber began. After crossing the creek, and with the timber back to them, the Native Troops made a stubborn stand, in spite of the fact that we could see them falling and being hauled away in sleds drawn by carabaos. There were so many Native Troops that as fast as a rifleman fell, another rushed in, replaced him, took his gun and kept on shooting, so that no matter how many we killed or wounded, the same number of rifles were always in action against us."
"At last we got so close tho their line that we advanced by 'rushes, half our men shooting from a prone position while the rest of us rushed a few hundred yards, then fell to the ground and shot to cover the same rushing advance of the other half of our line."
"This continued till we got so close to the Native Troops that our bugler blew "Fix Bayonets abd Charge." When the Native Troops saw that long line of glittering bayonets flash in the bright sun-light, they knew what was coming then, and the Native line broke quickly and the troops fled into the woods behind them."
It was 11:00 or 12:00 am. That was our hardest engagement with the Native Troops. We rested, ate dinner and hiked on to Baao, where we spent the night, and the next morning we hiked on to Iriga where our Commanding Officer of the 45th, Col. Joseph Dorst, established his Regimental Headquarters."
I hope we see the events in Agdangan on February 25, months shy of a century ago in a different light. History has gifted the town of Baao with yet another by-line to figure prominently in Bicol history and though to a lesser extent a significant part in the Filipino-American War of which Centennial year we are currently commemorating. Let us not let it pass again into oblivion."