« PreviousContinue »
YOUNG NARRA (MAHOGANY) TREES This photograph shows how the giant roots of this remarkable tree begin early to extend like flanges from the base of the tree.
often more than twenty inches in diam- twenty feet or more above the ground. eter. A wood something like the molave is From these great flat flanges can be cut the yacal, having a yellowish color. It is tremendous tables eight or ten and somea tremendous weight carrier. The logs times more feet in diameter. The photocome seventy feet long and forty inches in graph shows flanges which are more than diameter. The yacal is not as exception- forty-five feet across at the base. When ally hard as is the molave. One of the shown this picture, which was taken by lighter woods in the Philippines is the the writer, Major Ahern of the Forestry mangachupay. It weighs about sixty- Bureau stated it to be the largest tree he three pounds to the cubic foot, and though had seen or heard of. Usually a log of much heavier than our commercial woods narra is sawed up in thin planks, a single in the United States, many of the manga- plank being wide enough for a table or chupay logs will float. Mangachupay is door. When the narra is cut to the heart used for all ordinary house construction the heart wood bleeds a vivid red juice and planking. It makes the best sticks like blood. The natives make cups of the for ships' masts in all the Orient. An narra, and when water is put into the ordinary log is about sixty feet long and cups the dry wood imparts a bluish tinge twenty inches in diameter.
to it, and this decoction is highly thought A soft wood of the Philippines is the of by the people as being good for dropsihuge calentas or cedar. It grows every- cal troubles. There are two species of where, floats high out of the water, and narra, the yellow and the red; the one almost all of the cigar boxes of the Orient having a golden-straw color and the other are made of calentas. An enormous cal- a blood-red surface. When rubbed with entas timber exhibited at the St. Louis a little linseed oil or banana peel (varExposition was cut not far from Dalu- nish does not do well in the tropics on paon, where I am writing this article. account of the heat) the narra sparkles
Among the cabinet woods is the narra, and glistens like a plate-glass mirror. or Philippine mahogany, an immense tree One can see one's face in it. found in great abundance and furnishing A magnificent wood is the tindalo, the logs forty or more feet long and seven feet tree being somewhat larger in size and in diameter. The wood is always worth even greater in specific gravity than the at least a dollar in American money a narra. It is “one of the most valuable cubic foot, and even the branches, which jewels of the home, where it remains forare huge and straight, are sawn into logs. ever impervious to decay,” says an old The roots of the narra extend in huge Spanish padre (priest). “In China forflanges about the base of the tree, often merly it sold for its weight in silver. starting to spread outward and downward Even now it is extremely valuable. They make from it many curious desks, chairs A valuable wood is the Philippine and stools.” When first cut the tindalo ebony. In many parts of the Islands is bright red, which gradually grows ebony is very plentiful, but the tree is deeper, and in the course of years be- small. The ebony, which is the heart of comes a claret red. The Chinese preserve the tree, is jet black and forms only about the bright red color permanently by a one-third of it, the rest being whitesolution of salt water. Tindalo can be colored sapwood. Timbers nine feet long used in all kinds of construction. It is and twenty inches around are obtained, used for desks and tables, for doors, win- and they sell by weight alone, an unusudows, rollers, and for bedsteads. It is ally fine specimen being worth its weight very durable when exposed to the weather, in silver in the markets of the world. In and probably no American wood can com- Masbate there is a wagon bridge built of pare with it. If care is taken to keep the solid ebony. wood polished, in time it becomes so lus- The heaviest of all known woods is the trous that one's face can be seen in it. Philippine dungan or ironwood.
There are many fine woods in the Phil- plant on the Philippine Islands. Of ippines well known to old foresters as course, even these mills do not compare being valuable, but which have not yet with some of the vast sawmilling plants been generally introduced into the mar- of the States. Of the eight steam sawkets. Among these is the tree called dao, mills in Manila there are only three and not listed as yet in the government equipped with thoroughly modern maforestry books. The tree resembles a huge chinery, and these belong to Americans. sycamore. The timber is dusky red.
But the old order of things has Two gigantic trees, the timber of both changed; the Forestry Bureau is inviting of which is used for building, are the lumbermen with capital. The Filipinos apiton tree which grows one hundred and do not resent the intrusion of Amerififty feet high, giving clear logs one hun- can capital, provided its aspirations are dred feet long and breast high, and the legitimate, but are anxious to learn modspecies known as the supa.
ern ways and have practical object lessons It costs no more to lumber in the Phil- from those who know how things should ippines than in the United States. Take
Take be done. Engineers, surveyors, and conthe lumbering, for instance, of the narra, tractors for the new railroads in the Philwhich is the finest Philippine mahogany. ippines are already in the Islands and It can be put on the beach for less than beginning work. A new era is at hand $10 per thousand feet, board measure; for the Philippines! In the next ten it costs from $4 to $6 per thousand to get years American pioneers will educate the it to Manila ; but it sells for from $150 people of the Philippines as a whole to a to $175 per thousand. The lowest grade greater extent, industrially, than Spain material sells in Manila for $40 gold per did in all her three hundred years of thousand. In the face of this statement occupancy. one is likely to ask how it is that capital, There are many millions of cubic feet ever seeking investment, has not entered in the forests of the Philippines that largely into the Philippine lumber field. should be cut in order to properly thin The answer comes back two-fold. The out the dense growth; for instance, where Forestry Bureau regulations at first, fol- there are three or four trees growing on lowing out a government policy of ex- a space required for one; that one so freed clusiveism, were almost prohibitive for would put on more good wood each year fear of ruthless exploitation; and it is than the four together. only very lately that anything approach- to whether three hundred or three thouing modern methods have been tested sand trees should remain on an acre is against the usual primitive lumbering. where the real value of scientific forestry Any one who has seen eight or ten is shown. Then, too, there are many more carabao and about twenty men strug- millions of feet which reach maturity and gling all day to get a log down on pass on to decay, never thrilling to the the beach, where the same timber could woodman's axe. There are, however, very be easily handled with a donkey en- few companies in the Philippines properly gine or overland cable stage, will appre- equipped to handle large logs, and withciate how the industry has been handi- out master mechanics, expert gang bosses, capped. Many of the large trees close in fact all the skilled labor required, and to streams or water, in districts most without a full stock of the best supply forested, have never been marketed
marketed material, it would be hazardous to move because there was no way of getting them the large logs which must be cut and out. The natives never haul a log uphill
. brought to market if the forests are to be Sometimes it takes a whole day to chop a properly exploited. A good price is paid tree only eighteen to twenty inches in in Hong Kong for every stick of timber diameter with their narrow axes. So far, from the Philippines, and the American but little work has been done by modern lumbermen with modern methods can methods in the Philippines. Outside of solve the problem, and in so doing they Manila, Delapaon in the Southern Penin- will not only help to educate the adaptasula of Luzon, and Santa Maria on the ble Filipino as to practical things, but Island of Mindanao, and a plant in will insure him cash wages, something Negros, there is not a modern lumber unaccustomed in Spanish days.
T is always with a certain of the old methods. Two serious criti
unwillingness that I use cisms are made of the art schools of the the term “Art Educa- present day: one, that the studies are not tion,” because it is well prosecuted with definite enough aim and understood that art in do not sufficiently qualify the student for its proper sense can not actual work; the other, that no system of be taught. That myste- education in the practice of art has ever
rious impulse which lies been successful except the apprenticeship at the basis of painting, sculpture, archi- system of the old masters. tecture, poetry and music, is wholly in Concrete examples are
much communicable, and all we can do to pro forcible than theoretical discussions and mote it is to provide conditions favorable the purpose of the present article is to to its development. But we can teach the make a clear statement of how the practice of art, that is, the use of the endeavor is made to meet these difficulties instruments through which it finds ex in the schools of the Art Institute of Chipression. In the case of the graphic arts cago. Here a body of serious and liberal this includes instruction in drawing, educators, in close communication with painting, modeling, composition.
Europe, has been at work for years The problem of modern art education, endeavoring to establish the most pracas of all other education, is to introduce tical and effective system of education in more practical and stimulating methods the practice of art. Space will not allow without impairing the serious discipline me to discuss methods and I must confine