Balangiga Massacre

Working Definition:

A term used to describe the killing, perpetrated by Chief of Police Valeriano Abanador and Filipino prisoners, of unarmed U.S. soldiers stationed in Balangiga, Samar and from Company C, Ninth Infantry, on September 28, 1901. The following day, U.S. soldiers returned to the area and murdered hundreds of Filipinos, including youths over 10 years of age, beginning a series of attacks against the local population that lasted several days. The details of this violent episode remain in dispute, as does the legacy of the event. Debate also revolves around the term massacre to describe the events, along with the motivations of the historical actors involved in the violent episodes.

Related Terms:

  • Enemy
  • Insurrection, Insurrectos
  • Insurgency, Insurgent(s)

Suggestions for Further Reading:

Alvita Akiboh, “The ‘Massacre’ and the Aftermath: Remembering Balangiga and The War in the Philippines,” U.S. History Scene,