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Center for Chinese Studies 
Unive'"s':v of California 
216>i c>!i*Lt.)ck Avenue 
Bcxkcltry. California 94704 


University of California 

Mr. William Snead 


Ubc irslanC), its iP»eople an& /IDissions 







Center for Chinese Studies 
Univefsiry of Olifornia 
2163 Shatt.ick Avenue 
Bcxkeley, California 94704 


Niw York Chicago Toronto 

J. 4 fl'2*7 

Copyright, 1895, 


Fleming H. Revkll Company. 

Xntared at Stationer's Hall. All Righu resenred. 


. 1 li» ■! 1 11 


FORMOSA, at one time far off, has been brought near to 
the Western world. All eyes were turned upon it when 
it became the storm-center of the China-Japan War. But there 
were those who had been looking across the seas to the Beau- 
tiful Isle for more than twenty years before the war-cloud 
darkened the sky. They were interested in its fortunes because 
of one who had given himself, with Pauline faith and self- 
renunciation, that it might be redeemed from error and sin. 
George Leslie MacKay has long been the missionary hero of 
the Presbyterian Church in Canada. 

During his second furlough, which closed when he sailed 
from Vancouver on October 16, 1895, Dr. MacKay was elected 
moderator of the General Assembly of his church, and visited 
many points throughout the Dominion, in the United States, 
and in Scotland, addressing congrega4;ions and conventions. 
Everywhere and on all occasions the impression made was that 
of a great man and a hero. The demand for a fuller record 
of his life and work became increasingly virgent. Friends who 
knew that his information about Formosa was more extensive 
and more reliable than that of any other Hving man, and who 
believed that an account of his experiences and work would 
stimulate the faith and zeal of the church, but who feared lest, 
amid the uncertainties and perils to which his Hf e is constantly 
exposed, his career should be cut short before any record that 



might be given to the public had been prepared, impressed 
upon him the duly of meeting tliis reasonable demand. To a 
man of his ardent temperament and active habits prolonged 
literary work is the most irksome drudgery. He would rather 
face a heathen mob than write a chapter for a book. But con- 
vinced of its importance, he undertook the task, receiving 
valuable assistance from the Rev. W. S. McTavish, B.D. For 
weeks together he did little else than ransack note-books and 
journals, and explore the stores of his capacious memory. 

A few months ago Dr. MacKay put into my hands a mass 
of literary material — notes, obseivations, extracts from diaries 
and reports, studies in science, fragments of description, 
sketches of character — and laid upon mc the responsibility of 
organizing this material into form and life. This responsibility 
was increased rather than diminished by the very full editorial 
powers allowed me. I knew how easy it was to be " worlds 
away " ; for, as Macaulay says about the writing of history, the 
details might all be true and the total impression inadequate 
and misleading. Every scraj) of material was read and stud- 
ied under the author's eye, annotations were made at his dicta- 
tion, and the plan of classification and arrangement received 
his cordial approwil. As the work progressed and the gaps 
in the story became apparent, additional matter was obtained, 
and nearly all of the manuscript in its final form was revised by 
him. The aim in editing has been to preserve in its integrity 
not only the substance but the literary style of the author — to 
retain something of the vigor, the boldness, the Celtic enthusi- 
asm, so characteristic of Dr. MacKay's public speech. 

It is believed that the intelligent public will appreciate solid 
information as well as moving incident ; and it was Dr. Mac- 
Kay's desire that prominence should be given to what may be 
least romantic, but is most instructive. The chapters in the 
second division of the book, " The Island," are of necessity 
brief and fragmentary, the exigencies of space preventing the 


aathoi's supplying fuller information about Formosa, its re- 
sources and people. The editor is responsible for much of 
the personal element found throughout the book, Dr. MacKay 
reluctantly consenting to the introduction, necessary to an 
understanding of a foreign missionary's life and work, of many 
incidents and personal experiences elicited in the course of con- 
versation. While the book was being prepared the political 
relations of Formosa were being changed ; these changes are 
referred to as likely to affect mission work materially, though 
not injuriously, but the Chinese view-point is retained. 

For several months I was in constant and intimate associa- 
tion with Dr. MacKay, coming into closest touch with him, 
coming to know him as one is known only to the nearest and 
most sympathetic friends. To see the man of indomitable en- 
ergy, unflinching courage, and iron will shrink from anything 
like self-assertion, and yield without dispute to another's judg- 
ment, would be a revelation for whieh they are not prepared 
who know him only as a man of speech and action. To see 
his modest self-effacement, and to know how real his faith is, 
how personal God is to him, is to grasp the secret of his suc- 
cess. Few men in any age of the church have had a vividcr 
sense of the divine nearness. The God he serves is a pavilion- 
ing presence and a prevailing power in his soul. Such a prophet 
is Christ's greatest gift to his church. To him there can come 
no failure ; whatever ought to be can be. 

The publishers have spared no pains in the production of 
this book. Maps have been specially prepared, the three of 
North Formosa being reproduced from sketches made by Dr. 
MacKay, that of the island from the British Admiralty chart ; 
illustrations have been made from photographs taken in For- 
mosa by Koa Kau, Dr. MacKay's Chinese student ; the cover 
design represents the flower of the rice-plant, the rice in the 
ear, and the method of rice harvesting described in Chapter 
XXII. ; and the greatest care has been taken to avoid mechan- 


ical errors, to which a book dealing with life in a foreign 
country is liable. 

It remains only to acknowledge my indebtedness to the 
Rev. R. P. MacKay, B.A., Toronto, secretary of the Foreign 
Mission Committee of the Presbyterian Church in Canada, 
without whose counsel and assistance the editor's work would 
have been less satisfactory, if, indeed, it could have been done 
at all in the press of other duties. 

" From Far Formosa " is sent out with the prayer that it 
may be used of God in stimulating intelligent interest in the 

cause of world-wide missions. 

J. A, Macdonald. 

St. Thomas, Ontario, 
November, 1895. 




1. Early Years of the Author 13 

2. At Princeton and Edinburgh 18 

3. Toronto to Tamsui 26 

4. First Views of Formosa 33 

The Island 

5. Geography and History 41 

6. Geology 4* 

7. Trees, Plants, and Flowers 55 

8. Animal Life 7^ 

9. Ethnology in Outline 92 

Among the Chinese 

10. The People loi 

1 1 . Government and Justice 104 

12. Industrial and Social Life 113 

13. Chinese Religious Life 125 

14. Beginnings of Mission Work I35 

15. The First Native Preacher and his Church 142 

16. Establishing Churches ^53 

1 7. How Bang-kah was Taken ^64 

18. Touring in the North ^72 

19. The Waiting Isles '82 

20. The Coming of the French ^89 



The Conquered Aborigines 


21. Pe-po-hoan Characteristics 205 

22. Rice-farming in Formosa 209 

23. Mission Work among the Pe-po-hoan 215 

24. A Trip down the East Coast 226 

25. A Sek-hoan Mission 238 

26. Life among the Lam-si-hoan 241 

The Mountain Savages 

27. Savage Life and Customs 251 

28. With the Head-Hunters 267 

At Headquarters 

29. A Sketch of Tamsui 281 

30. Training a Native Ministry 285 

31. Oxford College 291 

32. Native Workers for Native Women 297 

33. Medical Work and the Hospital 308 

34. Foreigners and the Missions 318 

35. With the English Presbyterians 324 

36. Retrospect and Prospect 330 

Index 34 ' 


I " "3 

Dr. MacKay, Mrs. MacKay, and Family Frontispiece 

Water-buffaloes drawing Sugar-cane Facing page 78 

Aborigines eating Rice 

A Village in Eastern Formosa 

Dr. MacKay and Students on the March " 172 

Dr. MacKay and Students descending a Moun- 
tain " »8o 

Chapel at Sin-tiam, built of Stone " 191 

Winnowing Rice with a Fanning-mill " 212 

Bound for the Ki-lai Plain " 226 

Armed Pe.-po-hoan near Savage Territory " 234 

Lam-si-hoan Chief and Party " 242 

In A Lam-si-hoan Village " 248 

Unsubdued Aborigines living in the Mountains " 256 

Armed Head-hunters " 268 

Oxford College, Tamsui " 291 

A Pe-po-hoan Weaver " 3°^ 

A Dental Operation " 3' 5 


Island of Formosa Facing page 41 

Geological Map of North Formosa " 49 

Botanical Map of North Formosa " 55 

Map of North Formosa showing Mission Sta- 

TIO.NS *53 







Point of view — Ancestors — Life in Zorra — William C. Burns — Home- 
missionary service 

FAR Formosa is dear to my heart. On that island the best 
of my years have been spent. There the interest of my 
hfe has been centered. I love to look up to its lofty peaks, 
down into its yawning chasms, and away out on its surging 
sea. I love its dark-skinned people — Chinese, Pepohoan, and 
savage — among whom I have gone these twenty-three years, 
preaching the gospel of Jesus. To serve them in the gospel 
I would gladly, a thousand times over, give up my life. Be- 
fore what I now write has been read I will have set my face 
once more westward toward the far East, and by God's good 
hand will have reached again my beloved Formosan home 
beyond the Pacific Sea. There I hope to spend what remains 
of my life, and when my day of service is over I should like 
to find a resting-place within sound of its siuf and imder the 
shade of its waving bamboo. 

I love my island home, but not once in all these years have 
I forgotten the land of my childhood or ceased to be proud 



of it. Many a time in those first friendless days, when tongues 
were strange and hearts were hard and the mob howled loud- 
est in the street; many a time among cruel savages in the 
mountains, when their orgies rose wildest into the night; 
many a time alone in the awful silence of primeval forests, in 
solitudes never before disturbed by a white man's tread — 
many, many a time during these three and twenty years have 
I looked back from far Formosa, in fancy gazed on my Zorra 
home, and joined ^n the morning or evening psalm. Memo- 
ries of Canada were sweet to me then ; and now, when I come 
to tell something of life in that far-off isle, the view-point I 
take is life in the land of my birth. 

My fat''.-, George MacKay, a Scottish Highlander, with 
his wife, Helen Sutherland, emigrated from Sutheriandshire to 
Canada in i i ). There had been dark days in Scotland — 
the dark and gloomy days of the "Sutheriandshire Clear- 
ances," when hundreds of tenant-farmers, whose fathers were 
bom on the estate and shed their blood for its duke, were 
with their wives and families evicted, the wild notes of their 
pibroch among the hills and the solemn strains of their Gaehc 
psalms in the glens giving place to the bleating of the sheep 
and the hallo of the huntsman. Ruined cottages, deserted 
churches, and desecrated graves were the " gloomy memories " 
they carried with them from Scotland, and they crossed the 
sea in time to face the dark and stormy days of the Canadian 
rebellion. They made their home in what was then the wilds 
of Upper Canada, and on their farm in the township of Zorra 
reared their family of six children, of whom I was the young- 
est ; and in the burying-ground beside the " old log church " 
their weary bodies rest. 

Peace to the honored dust of those brave pioneers! They 
were cast in nature's sternest mold, but were men of heroic 
soul. Little of this worid's goods did they possess. All day 
long their axes rang in the forests, and at night the smoke of 


burning log-heaps hung over their humble homes. But they 
overcame. The wilderness and the solitary f>lace have indeed 
been made glad. And more. They did more than hew down 
forests, construct roads, erect homes, and transform sluggish 
swamps into fields of Brown and gold. They worshiped and 
served the eternal God, taught their children to read th^e B*ible 
and beheve it, listen to conscience and obey it, observe the 
Sabbath and love it, and to honor, and reverence the office of 
the gospel ministry. Their theology may have been narrow, 
but it was deep and high. . They left a heritage of truth, and 
their memory is still an inspiration. Their children have risen 
up to bless them in the gates. From the homes of the con- 
gregation that wershiped in the "old log church" at least 
thirty-eight young men have gone forth to be heralds of the 
cross in the ministry of the Presbyterian Church. 

In such a home and amid such siuTQundings I was bom on 
the 2ist of March, 1844. That was the year of the disruption 
4n Canada, and the Zorra congregation, with the Rev. Donald 
McRenzie, its minister, joined the Free Chvu-ch. The type 
of religious life was distinctly Highland. Men believed and 
felt, but seldom spoke about their own deeper personal spiritual 
experiences. There were no Sabbath-schools or Christian 
Endeavor Societies in Zorra fifty years. ago. Children were 
taught the Bible and the Shorter Catechism in the home, and 
on the Sabbath in the church the great doctrines of grace 
were preached with faithfulness and power. Men may talk 
slightingly to-day about that "stem old Calvinism." They 
would do well to pause and ask about its fruits. What other 
creed has so swept the whole field of life with the dread artil- 
lery of truth, and made men unflinchingly loyal to conscience 
and tremorless save in the presence of God? The iron of 
Calvinism is needed to-day in the blood of the church. It 
may be we heard much about sin and law in those olden 
days, but love and grace were not obscured. It may be the 


children were reticent and backward in the church, but they 
knew what secret sorrow for sin meant, and they found comfort 
at the cross. Before I reached the age of ten the ever-blessed 
Name was sweet and sacred in my ear. The paraphrase 
beginning with the words 

" While humble shepherds watched their flocks 
In Bethlehem's plains by night," 

repeated at my mother's knee in the quiet of the Sabbath 
evening, early made a deep impression on my soul. It was 
then that the thought of being a missionary first came. Wil- 
liam C. Burns had visited Woodstock and Zorra on his tours 
through Canada, and poured a new stream into the current 
of religious life. His name was cherished in the home, and 
something of his spirit touched my boyish heart. My grand- 
father fought at Waterloo ; his martial soul went into my- 
blood ; and when once I owned the Saviour King, the com- 
mand, " Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to 
every creature," made me a soldier of the cross. To be a 
missionary became the passion of my life. That was the 
dominant idea through all the years during which I served as 
school-teacher at Maplewood and Maitlandville, as scholar at 
AVoodstock and Omemee grammar-scb(M^ls, as student of arts 
in Toronto, and as student-missionary during the summer va- 
cations at Blue Mountain, Port Burwell and Vienna, Lucan 
and Biddulph, Forest and MacKay. 

A quarter of a century has passed since I served the church 
in those struggling home mission fields. The greater part of 
that time I have been far hence among the heathen, and am 
called a foreign missionary. But not now — not once in all 
these years — have I thought the foreign claims superior to the 
home, or honored the foreign missionary above his equally 
heroic and equally faithful brother who toils in the obscurity 
of a broken-down village, in the darkness of ultramontane 


Quebec, or amid the pioneer hardships of the newer settle- 
ments in Canada. It is not for me — it is not for any foreign 
missionary — ^to look loftily on the ministry at home, or think 
of them as less loyal, unselfish, and true. We are all mission- 
aries, the se?ii ones of the King, and not our fields, but our 
faithfulness, matters. Many of the church's first may be last 
when the Master comes. 



At Princeton Seminary — Offer for foreign service— Under Dr. Duff in 
Edinburgh— In the Scottish Highlands — Accepted by the General 
Assembly — Visiting. the churches 

HAVING completed my preparatory studies in Toronto, I 
went to Princeton early in September, 1867, and was 
enrolled as a student in the Theological Seminary there. The 
three years spent in that historic institution were full of interest 
and inspiration. All the professors were able, zealous, and 
devoted men. Dr. Green, the Hebraist, was vigorous and 
penetrating. Dr. James McCosh, of the college, lectured 
every Lord's day on the- life of Christ, with characteristic 
energy and power. But it was Dr. Charles Hodge who most 
deeply impressed himself on my heart and life. Princeton 
men all loved him. No others knew his real worth. Not in 
his monumental work on systematic theology can Charles 
Hodge be best seen : but in the class-room, or in the oratory at 
the Sabbath afternoon conference. There you saw the real 
man and felt his power. Can any Princeton man forget those 
sacred hours? How that charming face would brighten and 
those large luminous eyes grow soft and tender with the light 
of love! How awed we sometimes were when that trembling 
hand came down on the desk and those lips quivered with a 



strange and holy speech ! To look in on a Princeton class in 
those days would be to -see what a well-founded reverence 

On Tuesday, April 2d, 1870, 1 was graduated, having com- 
pleted the full curriculum of the seminary. It- was a memor- 
able day. According to the old Princeton custom, the pro- 
fessors and the graduating class met on the campus. The 
graduates threw their prized diplomas on the ground, and with 
the professors formed a ring, joining crossed hands. We sang 
" From Greenland's icy mountains " and " Blest be the tie that 
binds." Dr. Charles Hodge stepped into the circle. There 
was a tremor in his voice as he prayed for us all and lifted 
his hands in benediction. What a benediction! His eyes 
were moist as he said good-by. We parted in tears. The 
class of '70 was soon scattered. That night I was on my way 
to Canada. 

The summer of 1870 I spent within the Presbytery of 
Toronto, laboring in the mission stations of Newmarket and 
Mount Albert. The Rev. Professor MacLaren, D.D., at that 
time minister in Ottawa, was convener of the Foreign Mission 
Committee. To him I stated my desire to go abroad as a 
missionary. He encouraged me, and invited me to meet the 
committee early in October. I have never forgotten that 
meeting. It was not very hopeful or enthusiastic. It was a 
new experience for the committee. They scarcely knew what 
to do with a candidate for foreign work. When I formally 
oflfered my services to the Presbyterian Church, and asked to 
be sent as a missionary to the heathen, one member looked 
me in the face and said, " Mr. MacKay, you had better wait 
a few years." Another argued for delay : " As he is going to 
Scotland, let him go, and on his return we can think over the 
matter for a year or two." A third suggested Madagascar as 
a field for future consideration. The convener pleaded for 
immediate acceptance and appointment. I was told, how- 


ever, that the subject would be considered and the decision 
made known to :ne in due time. 

A fortnight later I found myself on board the steamship 
" Austrian," of the Allan line, en route from Quebec to Liver- 
pool. Money was scarce, and I was content with steerage 
passage. It was dismal enough at best, but I was a novice 
and unprovided for. The dreariness of the voyage was 
somewhat relieved by a burly Englishman who entertained 
his fellows in the steerage and found expression for his loyal 
soul in a song about King George, which he sang re'gularly 
every night, and danced his own accompaniment. From 
Liverpool to Glasgow was a sickening run, on a coaster called 
" Penguin," with a drunken crew and carousing passengers. 
In Glasgow I spent a delightful hour with the great Dr. Patrick 
Fairbairn. Two days later, November 4th, I arrived in Edin- 
burgh. That was my destination, and to meet one man there 
I had crossed the Atlantic. That man was the venerable mis- 
sionary hero, Dr. Alexander Duff. The story of his life had 
already fired my soul, and when I met him I was not disap- 
pointed. I was a young man, unknown and poor; but when 
he learned the purpose of my life, and that I had crossed the 
sea to sit at his feet, his welcome was that of a warm-heart'. d, 
godly Highlander. 

While in Edinburgh I took a postgraduate course, hearing 
lectures from Professor John Stuart Blackie in the university, 
and from Drs. Smeaton, Blaikie, Rainy, and Duff, in New 
College. Dr. Duff was professor of evangelistic theology, and 
under his supervision I studied Brahmanism and Buddhism, 
and learned Hindustani with Mr. Johnston of the Edinburgh 
Institution, having in view the India mission field. Dr. 
Duff's lectures were rich in matter and glowing with holy fire. 
At times he grew animated, threw off his gown, and gave his 
Celtic nature vent. He was specially kind to me. I spent 
many hours with him in his private room and at his home. I 


well remember the evening he showed me the Bible recovered 
after his shipwreck off the coast of Africa. It was doubly 
holy in my eyes. I saw him for the last time on March 13, 
187 1. He had gone to Aberdeen to deliver a course of 
lectures to the students in the Free Church College. Early 
in March I followed, and the first day occupied a seat in his 
class near the door. His unfailing kindness again was shown, 
and his cordial words of introduction to the students sectured 
for me a hearty welcome : " Gentlemen, here is my friend from 
Canada, bound for a heathen land. Show him that there are 
loving hearts in the ' Granite City.' " A few days afterward, 
at the close of his lecture, he walked down Union Street with 
me. When near the Queen's Monument he stood still, looked 
me in the face, grasped my hand tightly in both of his, spoke 
words too kind and sacred to be repeated, wheeled about, and 
was gone. Heroic Duff! Let Scotland and India and the 
churches of Christendom bear testimony to the loftiness of thy 
spirit, the consuming energy of thy zeal, the noble heroism of 
thy service. 

There were great preachers in Edinburgh, under whom it 
was a delight to sit. Who could forget Candlish or Guthrie? 
Arnot was there then, and Lindsay Alexander, Cairns, Mac- 
Gregor, and Alexander Whyte. With Candhsh and Guthrie 
I became personally acquainted — both truly great men, but 
how very different! At Candlish's home I sat with him for 
well-nigh two hours, until the bell rang for dinner. He paced 
the floor all the while. Sometimes he would turn sharply and 
ask about something in Canada. Then, running his left hand 
through his long, unkempt hair, he would take a few more 
rapid rounds. It was not altogether reassuring to a backward 
young man. Guthrie, again, was the soul of geniality. His 
family was with him in the room, and at his side his favorite 
little dog. He sat in an easy-chair with his long legs stretched 
out, bubbling over with humor. 


That winter in Edinburgh gave me experience in city 
mission work, and with other students I labored among the 
submerged outcasts in the Cowgate and Grassmarket. Like 
every man who claims to have Scottish blood, I came to love 
the famous old city, with its castle, cathedral, and palace, its 
historic scenes and thousand cherished memories. I was 
proud then of being in Edinburgh, and although I have since 
twice circled the globe, not in Orient or Occident have I seen 
a city to compare with " Scotia's darling seat." 

After the close of the colleges in March, I went north to 
Sutherlandshire, the land of my forefathers, spending the time 
chiefly at Dornoch, Tain, Golspie, and Rogart. The question 
of my life-work now became pressing. No word had come 
from Canada, and I began to despair of service in connection 
with the Canadian church. But on Friday evening, April 
14th, while I was considering seriously the advisability of 
offering my services to one of the Scottish or American 
churches, a lettet came from Dr. MacLaren stating that the 
Foreign Mission Committee had decided to recommend the 
General Assembly that I be accepted as their first missionary 
to the heathen world. It sent a thrill of joy to my heart. 
Accepted, and by my own beloved church! 

The next day I left the heathery hills, and three days later 
was on board the " Caledonia," bound from Glasgow to New 
York. I was again a steerage passenger, but for my com- 
panions had over seven hundred Irish Roman Catholic emi- 
grants. I have seen something of the under-side of life since 
then, I have looked upon human beings in all stages of degra- 
dation and in all conditions of filth ; but nothing has been 
able to blot out of my memory the impression made by the 
sights and sounds of that homeward voyage. Right glad I 
was, after nearly three long weeks, to breathe once more the 
pure air of heaven, and refresh my eyes with scenes that were 
wholesome and clean. 


The General Assembly of the Canada Presbyterian Church 
was called to meet in the city of Quebec on the second 
Wednesday of June. I was invited by the Foreign Mission 
Committee to be present at that Assembly. That venerable 
court was opened by the retiring moderator, the late Principal 
Michael Willis. The Rev. John Scott, D.D., then minister of 
St. Andrew's Church, London, was elected moderator. There 
were " bvuTiing questions " before that Assembly. The " Or- 
gan " was beginning to make itself heard in the church, and 
the question of union with the " Old Kirk " in Canada was 
quite to the front. But to me all interest centered around the 
report of the Foreign Mission Committee. Would the Assem- 
bly adopt the committee's recommendation? If 59, to what 
field would I be sent? The committee's report was presented 
on Wednesday, June 14th. It urged the Assembly "to favor 
mission work among the heathen." It stated: "A man has 
offered, and the church seems prepared to meet the UabiUty. 
Mr. MacKay, a student of the church, having passed the 
winter under Dr. Duff, is now in this city, ready to undertake 
the work which the church may appoint." Three fields were 
suggested — India, the New Hebrides, and China. The report 
preferred China. The Assembly decided : 

" That the offer of Mr. George L. MacKay's services as a 
missionary to the heathen be cordially welcomed, and that he 
be, as he is hereby, called by this Assembly to go forth as a 
missionary of the Canada Presbyterian Church to the foreign 

" That China be chosen as the field to which Mr. MacKay 
shall be sent ; 

"That the Presbytery of Toronto be authorized to ordain 
Mr. MacKay to the holy ministry, and to make arrangements, 
in accordance with the Foreign Mission Committee, for his 
designation to the work whereunto he has been'called." 

That evening I was introduced to the General Assembly 


as "the first foreign missionary of the Canada Presbyterian 
Church," and was invited to address the court. The "^fathers 
and brethren" were kind to me that night; some of them 
thought me an " enthusiast," and pitied me. Dr. John Hall 
of New York was on the platform, as deputy from the Presby- 
terian Church of the United States ; and when I had finished 
speaking he led the Assembly in prayer, commending "the 
young missionary " to the care of the eternal God, praying for 
"journeying mercies" and the sure gviidance of the Jehovah 
of Israel, 

In those days the chiurch in "Canada was divided and weak. 
The union of 1875, that consolidated Presbyterianism in 
British North America into one harmonious, strong, and ag- 
gressive church, and that has made the Presbyterian Church 
in Canada not the least in the great family of the churches 
of the Reformation, had not yet been consummated. The 
missionary effort of the church was directed almost entirely 
to work at home. Now that a new move had been made, it 
was necessary that funds be provided to meet the expense. 
To assist in awakening an interest in the cause of foreign mis- 
sions I was appointed to visit various congregations in Quebec 
and throughout Ontario during the summer of 187 1. I visited 
a good many churches between Quebec and Goderich, carry- 
ing out Paul's injunction to Timothy; but when I discussed 
the " Master's great commission," and vmdertook to " reprove, 
rebuke, exhort," some of the congregations did not^take. kindly 
to the exercise. Some very uncomplimentary things were 
said, and I was called " an excited young man." There was 
a great deal of apathy, and the church was very cold. It 
seems to me that was the "ice age." But there were some 
noble exceptions. Several good meetings were held in Mon- 
treal, and I was greatly cheered by the kind and encourag- 
ing words of Principal MacVicar and the great geologist, Sir 
William Dawson. A union meeting was held in Ottawa. 


Rev. Dr. MacLaren was minister of Knox Church, and Dr. 
Moore of Bank Street. Their noble words of comnnendation 
and appeal stirred more hearts than Aiine. At Ayr I had the 
good fortune to meet the pastor of one of the churches, the 
late Rev. Walter Inglis. He was himself a veteran missionary 
who had spent a quarter of a century in the Dark Continent. 
He felt the coldness and apathy of the church, but his royal 
nature touched it all with warmth and sunshine : " Never 
worry, young man. People will lecture you and advise you 
and talk about the cost. Put it in your pocket and go your 
way. Things will change, and you'll see a brighter day." 

I look back on the experiences of that first tour of the 
churches, and I contrast them with things to-day. Surely the 
predicted change has come. Rip Van Winkle saw no greater 
in his day. Ministers now are all as " excited " as I was 
twenty-three years ago, and they are much better informed. 
Congregations are all organized for mission purposes. Mis- 
sions is the most popular of all topics. People crowd to hear 
the story of missionary work abroad. There are ■' mission " 
evenings at every General Assembly. Missionaries are desig- 
nated and sent out every year. The " brighter day " has come. 
Thank God, I have lived to see it. The past is forgotten in 
the joy of the present, and the future is pregnant with still 
greater things. To-morrow will be as to-day, and mugh more 



Ordination — Departure — On the way — Credentials — Alone — ^Japan — With 
English Presbyterian Missionaries — In Soath Formosa — ^At Tamsni 
—"This is the land!" 

THE Presbytery of Toronto, in accordance with the instruc- 
tions of the General Assembly, made arrangements for 
my ordination and designation on Tuesday, September 19th, 
I appeared before the Presbytery in the afternoon and deliv- 
ered my " trials." In the evening the ordination service was 
held in Gould Street Church. The pastor, the Rev. John M. 
King, D.D., now principal of Manitoba College, Winnipeg, 
preached on the text, " His name shall endure forever." At 
my side that evening was another candidate for the holy oflSce, 
George Bryce, who was. under appointment to missionary and 
educational work in Manitoba. Dr. Bryce has served the 
church with honor and success, and has risen to distinction 
among Canadian educationists and authors. That evening 
we stood together before the Rev. J. Pringle, the moderator, 
knelt together, and by " laying on of the hands of the Presbytery" 
were together set apart to the work of the gospel ministry and 
designated to our respective fields, he to go to tlie newer West 
and I to go to the older East. The convener of the Foreign 
Mission Committee came up from Ottawa and delivered the 
*' charge " to the foreign missionary. My companion was 
similarly addressed in the name of the Home Mission Com- 



mittee by the Rev. Dr. Laing, now minister in Dundas. The 
speakers recognized the importance of the occasion as mark- 
ing a forward movement in both the home and foreign work, 
and as suggesting a union of aims and interests that must 
never be sundered. The church's work is one, and conflict 
will be fatal. 

One month after ordination, October 19, 1871, I bade fare- 
well to my old home in Zorra, to meet again an unbroken 
family circle only when life's sea is no more. What was said 
or what was felt need not now be told. God nnly knows 
what some hearts feel. They break, perchance, but they give 
no sign. 

It was nearly noon when the west-bound train pulled out 
of the station at Woodstock. Our first run was to Detroit, 
Chicago was next reached — a dreadful sight — dust and ashes 
and smoke. The " great fire " had just swept over the city, and 
was still smoking and smoldering. The third run was to 
Omaha, where I spent the first Sabbath day, and had the 
privilege of preaching the blessed gospel to a crowd assembled 
in the open air on the outskirts of the city. 

Traveling was not the simple affair it is to-day. There 
were no through tickets from Toronto to Hong Kong. The 
missionary traveled over several roads and had to deal with 
various companies. There was no recognized "missionary 
rate." But the railway authorities were generous, and granted 
me a reduction over their roads. At Omaha the agent looked 
doubtful when I told him I was a missionary bound for a 
heathen land and asked for the favor granted by the three 
roads over which I had already traveled. " I do not know 
you," he replied. "Where are your credentials? " I had no 
credentials, nor any formal document by which I might be 
certified. I was at a loss what to do. No one knew me. 
Then like a flash the thought gf my Bible came to me. It 
was the parting gift of the Foreign Mission Committee. I 


produced it from my satchel and asked the agent to read the 
inscription on the fly-leaf: 

presented to 

Rev. G. L. MACKAY, 

First Missionary of the Canada Presbyterian Church to 
China, by the Foreign Mission Committee, as a parting 
token of their esteem, when about to leave his native land 
for the sphere of his future labors among the heathen. 

William MacLaren, Convener. 
Ottawa, 9th Oct., 1871. 

Matt, xxviii. 18-20. Psalm cxxi. 

These were my credentials. None could be better. No other 
was required. I was soon on my way again, and on October 
27th arrived at San Francisco. Here I was the guest of a 
kind-hearted Canadian, Mr. William Gunn. On Wednesday, 
November ist, I boarded the steamship " America," bound 
for Hong Kong. My host and two city missionaries, Messrs. 
Condit and Loomis, accompanied me on board to say fare- 
well. The signal was given, the guns were fired, the stately 
ship weighed anchor, slowly steamed out through the " Golden 
Gate," and I was at last alone. Such experiences are com- 
mon enough now, but then they were new and strange. I 
did not feel afraid, nor sorry, nor glad. Thoughts of home 
came, thoughts of the loved ones more than three thousand 
miles behind, and thoughts of what might be before. The 
sea was wide. The regions beyond were dark with the night 
of heathenism and cruel with the hate of sin. Would I ever 
return to my native land? And my life — what would it matter 
against such fearful odds? Could it be that I had made a 
mistake ? 

Such hours come to us all. They came to our Lord. They 
are hours of testing and trial. Sooner or later the soul enters 
Gethsemane. I found mine that day, and in the little state- 


room the soui was staggered awhile. But it was not for long. 
The Word brought hght. The psalm marked by the committee 
on the fly-leaf of the Book began, " I will hft up mine eyes 
unto the hills;" and the promise was, " Lo, I am with you 
alway." And then the Forty-sixth Psalm! Oh, how often it 
has brought comfort and peace! When the waves dashed 
in fury I read it. Aye, and when storms arose wilder, more 
relentless, and deathful than any that ever vexed the broad 
Pacific ; when heathen hate and savage cruelty rose like the 
hungry sea, the blessed words, " God is our refuge and 
strength," opened wide the door into the secret of His pres- 
ence. On that day in my state-room I read it again and again 
— precious truth ; glorious refuge ; God, the eternal God. 
Hark, my soul ! he speaks : " Certainly I will be with thee." 
Begone, unbelief! God in heaven is the keeper of my soul. 
The glorified Jesus says, " Lo, I am with you alway." 

Voyaging on the Pacific is a pleasure now. A quarter of 
a century ago it was otherwise. There were no palatial Can- 
adian Pacific steamers then. After twenty-six days the snow- 
clad peaks of Fuji-yama,®the Holy Mountain of Japan, was 
a welcome sight. There were several other missionaries on 
board, whose fellowship was refreshing and helpful. From 
the ship's library I derived benefit and pleasure through such 
works as " The Social Life of the Chinese," by Justus Doo- 
litlle ; " The Middle Kingdom," by S. Wells Wilhams ; " China 
and the Chinese," by John L. Nevius ; and " China and the 
United States," by Spears. 

While our ship was lying at anchor in the harbor of Yoko- 
hama I had my first introduction to life in the Orient. Every- 
thing was new and interesting. The boatmen in the harbor, 
with their rice-straw waterproof coats, reminded me of pic- 
tures of Robinson Crusoe. Large, heavy wooden carts were 
rcjlled slowly along with much pulling, pushing, and intermin- 
able grunting. The smart rickshaw, a sort of overgrown per- 


ambulator, whisked by, the ranners shouting, in their Japanese 
gibberish, " Clear the way, clear the way 1 " 

Leaving Yokohama, we sailed along the coast of China mitil 
we entered a narrow strait, and, following its serpentine course, 
were soon in the spacious harbor of Hong Kong. Magnificent 
view! — houses ranged tier after tier far up the steep sides of 
granite hills ; and high over all waved the flag of " a thousand 
years." I had scarcely got rid of the coolies, who in their 
eagerness for the job of carrying my baggage had been pound- 
ing one another with bamboo poles, when a Saxon accent 
greeted my ears : " Are you MacKay from Canada? " That 
night I was the guest of Dr. Eitel. Next day I took the 
steamer for Canton. There on the pier I was hailed by 
McChesney, a Princeton fellow-student. The night was spent 
with the Rev. Dr. Happer, a veteran American missionary. 

Having returned from Hong Kong, I took passage on the 
steamship " Rona," and on the following Sabbath we dropped 
anchor in Swatow harbor. No sooner had the ship's ladder 
been lowered than two Englishmen, whom we had been 
watching as they rowed out in a sampan, climbed on deck 
and called out, "Is MacKay from Canada on board?" It 
did not take long to make myself known, and the strangers 
proved to be Mr. Hobson of the Chinese Imperial Customs 
and Dr. Thompson of the English Presbyterian Mission at 

Before my designation the Toreign Mission Committee in 
Canada had correspondence with the committee of the Presby- 
terian Church in England. Mr. James E. Matheson of that 
church had written inviting the Canadian church to share 
with his the privilege of work in China; and in appointing 
me to China the General Assembly made special mention of 
cooperation with the English Presbyterian missionaries. The 
brethren at Swatow were, therefore, made aware of my com- 
ing, and right cordial was their welcome. 


There were strong inducements presented in favor of settling 
in the Swatow district, but I resolved first to see Formosa. 
An up-the-coast steamer carried me to Amoy, and there I 
got a British schooner, " Kin-lin," and crossed the channel to 
Formosa. I had no plans, but invisible cords were drawing 
me to the "Beautiful Isle." The channel passage was the 
last and worst of the entire voyage from Canada. It was a 
night of thick darkness, howling blasts, and a plunging sea. 
We landed at Ta-kow, on the south of the island. Here I 
was met by a noble young physician, Dr. Manson, who took 
me ashore in a sampan. On the following Sabbath morning, 
in a British hong (warehouse) at Ta-kow, to a congregation 
of captains, officers, engineers, and merchants, I preached the 
gospel of a crucified Saviour. It was the last day of the year 
1871, and that was my first sermon in Formosa. 

On New- Year's day, 1872, I set out from Ta-kow to find 
the Rev. Hugh Ritchie, of the English Presbyterian Mission. 
He was at A-li-kang, twenty-six miles away. It was an in- 
teresting walk, even though my Chinese guide was a man of 
" strange speech." In the evening, as I drew near the village, 
I saw a man-dressed in blue serge and wearing a large white 
sun-hat. I took him to be Mr. Ritchie, and so accosted him. 
" Is this MacKay from Canada? " he said, and with both 
hands he made me welcome to Formosa. For twenty-six 
days I enjoyed the hospitality of his home, and foimd him 
a friend with a large heart, a Christian with a high ideal, a 
missionary full of self-denying zeal, and his estimable wife a 
laborer of like mind. I learned much about the island and 
the methods of work in the south, and traveled many times 
over the district occupied by the nine stations under Mr. 
Ritchie's charge. I made good use of his Chinese teacher, 
and mastered the eight " tones " of the Formosan dialect. 

Where shall I settle? was a question still to be answered. 
The missionaries on the mainland pointed to the "white 



fields " in the Swatow district. Here in the south they told 
me of North Formosa, with its teeming population in city and 
plain and mountain fastnesses, for whose souls no man cared. 
No missionary was there. The foundations of a mission were 
not laid. To that work I felt called. " I have decided to 
settle in North Formosa," I said to Mr. Ritchie one day. 
" God bless you, MacKay," was his glad response. 

On March 7, 1872, Mr. Ritchie and I set out to explore 
the field chosen for my future work. We took passage to 
Tamsui, a seaport on the north of the island. At Tai-wan- 
fu, in the southwest, the capital of Formosa, where the Eng- 
lish Presbyterian Mission was established by the noble Dr. 
Maxwell in 1865, we were joined by Dr. Dickson, leaving the 
Rev. W. Campbell in charge of the southern chapels. The 
" Hailoong " rolled and pitched for two days, and then we 
steamed into the mouth of the Tamsui River and anchored 
there. One look toward the north, another toward the south, 
another far inland to the dark green hills, and I was content. 
There came to me a calm, clear, prophetic assurance that here 
would be my home, and Something said to me, " This is the 



A beautiful parish — First glimpses — Prospecting — First night at an inn 
— Malaria — A Pe-po-hoan village — With the aborigines among the 
mountains — Parting company — Alone in Tarns ui 

BEAUTIFUL indeed was that first view of North Formosa, 
as seen from the deck of the steamer in the harbor at 
Tamsui. We all stood and gazed, deeply impressed. In the 
evening we wandered out over the broad table-land and the 
downs toward the sea. The fine large fir-trees, not found 
near Ta-kow, attracted Ritchie's eye and reminded him of his 
Scottish home. But when he saw the situation of Tamsui, 
standing over against a solitJiry mountain peak that rose sev- 
enteen hundred feet, and backed on the east and south by 
range after range climbing two thousand, three thousand, and 
four thousand feet high, his soul was stirred to its depth, and 
sweeping the horizon with his hand he exclaimed : 

" MacKay, this is your parish." 

" And far more beautiful it is than Ta-kow," added Dr. 
Dickson, with equal emphasis. 

The next day was the Sabbath. There was no preaching 
done that day. I could not speak the language, and Ritchie 
and Dickson deemed it prudent not to arouse the opposition 
of the people by untimely service. No preaching had ever 
been done in Tamsui, or anywhere else in North Formosa, and 
we left the people to surmise about us what they chose. Wc 



spent the day quietly in a room in the hong of John Dodd, 
Esq., the pioneer British merchant at Tamsui. 

As the purpose of Messrs. Ritchie and Dickson was to visit 
the most northerly stations of their field by overland route 
from Tamsui, I resolved to accompany them and "spy out 
the land " in which I was to labor. It was one hundred and 
ten miles southwest to their nearest point. Early Monday 
morning we arose and made ready for the journey. It was to 
be taken on foot. Ritchie and Dickson brought with them 
one man each to serve as carriers. Our outfit was simple 
and soon prepared. Some salted buflfalo-meat, a few cans 
of American condensed milk, pressed meat, biscuits, and 
coffee formed our food-supply. Ritchie wore a blue serge 
suit, Dickson a Scotch tweed, and I my Canadian gray. We 
started out three abreast, with the carriers behind in single 
file. Walking toward the harbor along the north bank of the 
Tamsui River, we soon reached the ferry and crossed to the 
opposite shore. Our shoes were off, and stowed away in the 
carriers' baskets. With feet bare and trousers rolled up to 
the knees, we sprung from the ferry-boat to the shining sand. 
It was a glorious morning. The tide was out, and our path 
lay along the sandy flats, left clean and cool by the receding 
waters. All were in high glee. Soon we struck the trail, 
that wound inland among little rice-fields, and in an hour or 
two were on the high plateau. The scenery was charming. 
Here and there were groves of fir, and around an occasional 
farm-house waved the tall bamboo. It was early spring, and 
the grassy sward was decked with innumerable dandelions, 
violets, and other wild flowers. The air was vocal with the 
sweet song of the sky-lark singing clear up against the blue. 
We descended into a large rice-plain and soon reached the 
public road. Toward evening we arrived at Tiong-lek, a 
town of about four thousand population, and got quarters for 
the night at the best inn. It was on the main street, a low, 


one-story building of sun-dried bricks. This was my fint ex- 
perience in a Formosan inn. Our room was small, allowing 
no space for anything but the three beds it contained. There 
was no stand, table, or chair. The beds were of planks with 
legs of bricks, and, instead of springs and bedclothes, had 
each a dirty grass mat, upon which cooHes had smoked opium 
for years. There was no window or other opening to the 
fresh air. The glimmer that came from a pith-wick in a 
saucer of peanut-oil revealed the black, damp earth floor, the 
walls besmeared and mouldy ; and crawHng everywhere were 
three generations of creatures whose presence did not add 
to the " barbarians' " comfort. A stupefying smell of opium- 
smoking, the odor of pigs wallowing in iiltli at the door, and 
the noisome fetor of the whole establishment were almost too 
much for my unaccustomed senses, and I thought surely my 
companions were giving me a " strong dose." I soon learned, 
however, that the inn at Tiong-lek was regarded as fu^t-class, 
and in some respects excelled any I afterward saw anywhere 
in Formosa. We came to regard it as the " Queen's Hotel." 
Other inns make no arrangement for meals or feeding travel- 
ers, but this one had in the open court an " earthen range " 
for the use of travelers, and an open room with a table, two 
chairs, and a bench. Many a time have I been grateful for 
that "range" upon which to cook our food, and that room 
in which to eat it. To be sure, the floor was earth, and the 
hens and ducks had easy access, and the pigs grunted indoors 
and out ; but it was the most homelike place we ever found in 
any public house in all our travels on the island. 

Leaving Tiong-lek, the road ascended to an upland, the 
edge of which, called Table Hill, three hundred feet high, 
overlooked a rich plain with many little farms. The houses 
were encircled by- bamboo, which gave the whole place the 
appearance of a waving forest. Descending by stone steps, 
we passed through the fields and bamboo-plantations, and in 


the evening entered the walled city of Tek-chham, with its 
forty thousand inhabitants. That night we spent in an irn 
compared with which the one at Tiong-lek was palatial. Next 
day we passed small fields of barley and wheat, and trudged 
over the weary sand-dunes, and at night were grateful for the 
grass hut at the halting-place for coolies, where the inevitable 
pig, with her swarm of little ones, took up her headquarters 
under our bed. 

Next day Mr. Ritchie succumbed to malaria. He had 
been in Formosa only four years, but his system was honey- 
combed by the poison, and that day he had to take the sedan- 
chair. The dirty waUed town of Tai-kah was next reached, 
and our path lay over a low piece of country toward Toa-sia, 
an inland Pe-po-hoan village. We were now within the terri- 
tory of the English Presbyterian Mission, and at Toa-sia there 
was a small chapel and a numbfer of converts. They had 
been advised of our approach, and about fifty of them came 
out to meet us. They received us with great joy, for only 
once before had a Christian missionary ever visited them. We 
stayed there nearly a week. On the Lord's day the chapel 
was crowded with eager Pe-po-hoan worshipers, and many 
Chinese from a neighboring town were attracted by the strange 
"barbarians." Our next move was to Lai-sia, a Pe-po-hoan 
village not far away, where we refhained until the next Sab- 
bath, when we returned to Toa-sia. On Monday we started 
out for Po-sia, a Pe-po-hoan settlement within savage territory, 
fax in among the mountains. No white man had ever been 
in that plain. Many of its inhabitants had moved in from 
Toa-sia, and now fifty-five of their rdatives accompanied us 
on our journey. They provided themselves with food for the 
way. The men carried knives at their belts, and a few match- 
locks, fearing the mountain tribes, who i^egarded them as 
traitors. The first night we spent in the woods. The fires 
were kindled and burned all night. 


The entrance to Po-sia was through a narrow pass made 
by some volcanic eruption among the rocks. At places the 
pass was not more than six feet wide, with the perpendicular 
walls of rock on either hand two hundred feet high. 

On Tuesday, we emerged into a plain six miles long and 
five miles wide, completely inclosed by densely wooded 
mountains. This was the Po-sia plain, and here hved six 
thousand Pe-po-hoan. At the edge of the rocks we were met 
by an outlook party that had been sent to welcome us, and 
on the way had been hunting the wild boar. There was great 
jubilation when friends met friends. They gave us an ova- 
tion, and as we did not wear the cue they called us their 
kinsmen. That night a great ox was killed, and a powwow 
of huge dimensions was held to celebrate otu" coming. They 
sang their wild chanting songs and awakened the echoes 
among the mountains. We remained there for over a week. 
Mr. Ritchie held service every evening, and on Sunday a 
great crowd assembled. There was no church there, nor had 
the gospel been preached there before, but here was illustrated 
the self-propagating power of Christianity. Some of these 
Pe-po-hoan had heard the truth at the English Presbyterian 
chapels in the south, and, according to Christ's command- 
ment, had returned to their homes to show how great things 
the I^ord had done for them. 

We returned to Toa-sia, and there we parted, Ritchie and 
Dickson continuing their journey to Tai-wan-fu, and I with 
one Chinese started back for Tamsui. I returned by another 
route and reached Tamsui on April 6th, after an absence ot 
twenty-three days. Here began my work, alone, without an 
interpreter, and among those who hated and despised the 
" barbarian." What I had already picked up of the Chinese 
language 1 must now utilize or submit to being imposed upon. 
After four days I succeeded in renting a Chinese house that was 
intended to be used for a horse-stable by military mandarins. 


For this building I agreed to pay fifteen dollars per month. It 
was a filthy place. A steep hill being dug out furnished the 
site, and the road around separated it from the river. Situated 
as it was, it could not be healthy at any time. In the dry sea- 
son the atmosphere was hot and oppressive, and when the rains 
came the water streamed down the sloping hill and ran through 
the building across the floor into the river in front. One room 
was floored with unplaned boards, another with tiles, and the 
others with nature's black soil. I moved into my new home 
with all my furniture — two pine boxes. The British consul, 
Alexander Frater, Esq., lent me a chair and bed ; a Chinese, Tan 
Ah Soon, gave me an old pewter lamp ; and I employed a 
mason to whitewash the whole establishment. It was thor- 
oughly cleaned, portions of the walls hidden with newspapers, 
and openings curtained with red cotton. In full possession of 
this retreat, here is the record entered in my diary imder the 
date of April lo, 1872 : " Here I am in this house, having been 
led all the way from the old homestead in Zorra by Jesus, as 
direct as though my boxes were labeled, * Tamsui, Formosa, 
China.' Oh, the glorious privilege to lay the foundation of 
Christ's church in unbroken heathenism! God help me to do 
this with the open Bible! Again I swear allegiance to thee, O 
King Jesus, my Captain. So help me, God!" 




Position— Climate— Rainfall— Depression— Malaria^First attack of fever 

Struck by a typhoon — A doad-burst — Historical sketch — " Ilh» 

formosa ! " 

THE island of Formosa lies off the east coast of China, 
opposite the Fu-kien province. It is separated from the 
mainland by the Formosa Channel, which varies in breadth 
from eighty to two hundred miles. On the northeast and 
southeast the island is washed by the waters of the Pacific 
Ocean. It is about two hundred and fifty miles from north to 
south. The average breadth is about fifty miles. It contains 
an area of about fifteen thousand, square miles, being about 
one half the size of Ireland. Forest-clad mountain-ranges at- 
taining the height of from seven thousand to fifteen thousand- 
feet run through the center from north to south, and from their 
bases extends a broad stretch of lowlands, plateau and ravines. 
This plain is drained by three large streams which run into the 
Tamsui River. Precipitous cliflFs from three thousand to six 
thousand feet, clothed with vegetation except on the searface^ 
with two large and many small plains, which are silted inlets, 
compose the eastern side of North Formosa. 

Formosa is under tropical conditions. It lies between 
2oO 58-' and 25° 15' north latitude and 120° and 122^' east 
longitude. The Tropic of Cancer runs through it not far from 
the center, so that only the south is really within the tropics. 




Position— Climate— Rainfall — Depression — Malaria — First attack of fever 
— Struck by a typhoon — A cload-burst — Historical sketch — " Ilh» 
formosa ! " 

THE island of Formosa lies off the east coast of China, 
opposite the Fu-kien province. It is separated from the 
mainland by the Formosa Channel, which varies in breadth 
from eighty to two hundred miles. On the northeast and 
southeast the island is washed by the waters of the Pacific 
Ocean. It is about two hundred and fifty milea from north to 
south. The average breadth is about fifty miles. It contains 
an area of about fifteen thousand, square miles, being about 
one half the size of Ireland. Forest-clad mountain-ranges at- 
uining the height of from seven thousand to fifteen thousand- 
feet run through the center from north to south, and from their 
bas^ extends a broad stretch of lowlands, plateau and ravines. 
This plain is drained by three large streams which run into the 
Tamsui River. Precipitous cliffs from three thousand to six 
thousand feet, clothed with vegetation except on the sea-face^ 
with two large and many small plains, wliich are silted inlets, 
compose the eastern side of North Formosa. 

Formosa is under tropical conditions. It lies between 
aoo 58' and 25° 15' north latitude and 120° and 122^' east 
longitude. The Tropic of Cancer runs through it not far from 
the center, so that only the south is really within the tropics. 



On account of its position and the altitude of its mountains 
there is a considerable variety of climate, not only in that part 
that lies within the tropics, but also in the north. 

The climate of North Formosa is excessively trying to 
foreigners. Those who have traveled in the Orient will under- 
stand that statement, but to the average Westerner it will be 
meaningless. In fact, it cannot be fully comprehended save 
by those who have spent a number of years in such a climate. 
From January* to December flowers are in bloom and the 
whole country is green. Foliage is renewed as fast as it de- 
cays. We have no frost or snow, and those accustomed to 
invigorating atmosphere cannot understand how at times in 
Formosa we long for just one breath of the clear, crisp air of 
a frosty winter morning. About once a year we do get a 
glimpse of the snow's refreshing whiteness, but it is only a 
glimpse, for it lies on the top of the highest mountains, and 
around Tamsui remains only a few days. 

March, April, and May may be called our spring season. 
June, July, August, and part of September are very hot, and 
the months most dreaded, because, although the temperature 
varies from forty-two to one hundred degrees at Tamsui and 
Kelung, yet on account of the weight of moisture carried by 
the atmosphere the heat is much more oppressive and enervat- 
ing than in other and drier regions of South China. In August 
and September the tropical storms and typhoons come, which 
help to clear the air. October and November generally bring 
delightful weather in the north. About the end of December 
our rainy season sets in, and continues through January and 
February. It is rain, rain, rain, to-day, to-morrow, and the 
next day ; this week, next week, and the week after ; wet and 
wind without, damp and mould within. Often for weeks to- 
gether we rarely get a glimpse of the sun. All the year around 
we have to fight against depression of spirits, and say over to 
ourselves as cheerfully as possible : 


" Be still, sad heart, and cease repining ; 
Behind the clouds is the sun still shining." 

Not only during the rainy season, but almost any time 
throughout the year, we may expect heavy floating clouds to 
be arrested by the mountains and to empty themselves into 
the plains. Especially is this the case during the northeast 
monsoon. As the warm waters of the Japanese " Black 
Stream " sweep northerly along the eastern coast of Formosa, 
vapors ascend and are driven toward the island, there to be- 
come heavy clouds, which condense, touch the mountain-tops, 
and torrents of rain result. This accounts for the heavier rain 
on the eastern than on the western side. During the south- 
west monsoon, however, the wind drives these vapors away 
from the northern part of the island, and then we have our 
finest weather. 

Keeping in view the dampness of Formosa and the power- 
ful influence of the broiling tropical sun, it will be easily under- 
stood that growth is very rapid. Scarcely a barren spot is to 
be seen. The rocks are clad in moss and festooned with 
vines; the very trees in their wild state are covered with 
creepers. But if growth is rapid, so is decay, and hence 
man's deadliest foe — malarial fever. This is the blackest 
cloud that hangs longest over our beautiful island. Because 
of it disease and death work terrible havoc among the inhabi- 
tants. Almost every form of disease is directly traced to this 
one source. Seldom do three months elapse without one or 
more members of every household being laid low. In the hot 
season the natives are suddenly attacked, and in many cases 
succumb in a few hours. The bacteria of Asiatic cholera and 
malarial fever, earned on the wind, sweep over the country 
like a deathful pestilence.* Sometimes the fatal effects of the 
climate do not appear for many months; but they manifest 
themselves so suddenly and unexpectedly that the physician 


has little chance to save life. Therefore we have often been 
called to follow the beloved members of our little community 
to the grassy resting-place out on the hill. 

My first attack of fever was exactly one year after my 
arrival on the island. I had been on an extended tour with 
Captain Bax of her Majesty's man-of-war. We penetrated 
far into the mountains, and were for a considerable time in 
savage territory. Bax, although strong and healthy when we 
set out, had to be carried back in a sedan-chair. On return- 
ing to Tamsui I found my rooms chilly, damp, and mouldy. 
While I was absent the place was not occupied, and when I 
returned and lay down to sleep I became cold as ice, shook 
and trembled hke an aspen-leaf, my- teeth chattering so loudly 
that A Hoa heard it in an outer apartment. He came to my 
relief and remained at my bedside the whole night. As there 
was no fireplace in the building, it was impossible to get 
warmed. Heavy doses of quinine broke the fever, but my 
system was not free from it for years. Many times, on trips 
among churches and in the mountains, have the mats under 
me been wet with perspiration during the hot stage of the 

Personal experience has convinced me that but few for- 
eigners can resist the enervating influence of the climate in 
Formosa, and hence I have pleaded for a native ministry to 
carry on the work of the mission. If European merchants in 
theit well-buih houses in Tamsui or Kelung find it impossible 
to maintain their health, what would become of them had they 
to live in Chinese houses on the east coast, or be exposed to 
the wind and weather in inland traveling? 

The position and topography of Formosa expose it to the 
dreadful typhoon which sweeps across the Malay Archipelago, 
over the Philippine Islands, and then northward to Japan, tak- 
ing Formosa in its course. The name is from the Chinese ta- 
fung or " great wind." The intense heat in southern latitudes 


conspires with other causes to produce this fearful outbreak 
of the elements, that results every year in untold loss of life 
and property. As the main path of the typhoon is along the 
Chinese sea-coast, the greatest destruction is on the ships and 
islands. Trees are torn up by the roots, buildings are swept 
away like chaff, great ships are broken to pieces or Ufted from 
their anchorage and deposited elsewhere, and thousands of 
lives are lost. My first experience was in 1874, when the 
great t>T)hoon swept over the land. I was hurrying alone 
from Kelung to Bang-kah. I came to a deep stream, and was 
feeling my way across a narrow plank bridge, when a great 
roar was heard, and before I reached the opposite bank the 
typhoon broke. I was hurled headlong through the darkness 
into the mud and water below. How I regained the slippery 
bank and made my way through the storm-swept bamboo and 
along the narrow winding path I cannot tell. It was nearly 
midnight when I reached Bang-kah, and right glad I was to 
find some shelter with the students there. That night a Brit- 
ish merchant steamer bound for Tamsui was struck outside the 
Kelung harbor, and in the morning only the fragments of a 
wreck could be seen. Nearly all on board were lost, and now 
on a rock a white marble cross commemorates their loss. 

Some years afterward, with Sun-a, one of my students, I was 
traveling to Kelung. When on the last mountain we looked 
seaward across the harbor, and behold ! a black wall stood be- 
tween the troubled sea and the lowering heavens. Thousands 
of sea-gulls were pressing forward with long, loud cries. We 
understood the signs and made all haste. Just as we were 
entering the town, with one indescribable roar the ^torm burst. 
First a few drops of rain, then the wind loosened and the tor- 
rents fell. Every living creature sought refuge. We rushed 
into a half-finished hut, and were companions in distress with 
a number of black pigs. There we stayed the whole night, 
listening to the fury of the terrific gales and surging waves. 


Early in the morning we looked out to see the streets two feet 
deep in the water, gardens and rice-fields flooded, and every- 
where marks of destruction and loss. 

Turning now to the history of Formosa,, we find many of 
the annals untrustworthy, being both inaccurate and fanciful. 
The Chinese claim to have sent an envoy to the island during 
the Suy dynasty, which was overthrown in 620 a.d. This 
claim is entirely probable. With junks, such as the Chinese 
possessed hundreds of years ago, it is not credible that they 
could sail through the Formosa Channel year after year with- 
out seeing the island and touching it somewhere. The first 
Europeans to visit Formosa were Portuguese, who settled 
there in 1590. The Dutch landed in 1624, and two years 
later were followed by the Spaniards. The Dutch expelled 
the Spaniards in 1642, and they themselves were driven out by 
Koxinga, the famous Chinese pirate. Koxinga was loyal to 
the Ming dynasty, and when the Tartars came down from 
Manchuria, and Sun-ti was proclaimed emperor, Koxinga re- 
fused to submit to the usurper. He continued to molest the 
coast to such a degree that in 1665 the emperor ordered all the 
people to retire nine miles in and to escape Koxinga's grasp. 
One might suppose that an emperor strong enough to secure 
such obedience from his subjects might easily have defended 
his maritime provinces against attack ; but such is Chinese 
strength and weakness. Having thus failed to reach the sub- 
jects of the empire, Koxinga crossed the channel, drove the 
Dutch out of Formosa, and proclaimed himself first kijig of 
the island. His reign was brief and stormy, and in 1683 his 
successors were dethroned by the Chinese emperor and For- 
mosa made a dependency of the Fu-kien province. In 1874 
the Japanese invaded the eastern part of the island, but left 
immediately after the Chinese government made reparation 
for the loss sustained by the Japanese junks that had been at- 
tacked by the savages. In 1887 Formosa first became a sepa- 


rate province of the Chinese empire. In 1894 war broke out 
between China and Japan, and at its close the island of For- 
mosa was ceded to Japan and is now under the flag of the 
" Rising Sun." 

The aboriginal or Malayan name of the island was Pekan 
or Pekando. In 1430 the Chinese named it Ki-lung-shan 
(" Mountain of Kelung"), and the best port in the north still 
retains that name. Subsequently they called it Tai-wan (" Ter- 
raced Harbor "), and by that name it is known to all Chinese to 
this day ; and the capital of the island was therefore called Tai- 
wan-fu (" capital city of Tai-wan "). " Formosa " is a Portu- 
guese word. It is a descriptive name meaning " beautiful," and 
was first applied to the settlement at Kelung in 1 590. Sailing 
along the east coast, their brave voyagers, sighting the green- 
clad mountains with peaks piercing the scattered clouds, cas- 
cades glimmering like silver in the tropical sunhght, and 
terraced plains wa\'ing with feathery bamboo, exclaimed with 
glad surprise, " Ilha formosa, ilha formosa! " (" Beautiful isle, 
beautiful isle!"). 



Formosan natural history unwritten — A great subsidence — ^The island 
given back — Geological formation — Minerals found — Physical changes 
— Earthquakes — Loss and compensation — The eternal Refuge. 

THE natural history of Formosa is as yet an unwritten 
book. Even in the best authorities information is 
meager and unreliable. Anything pretending to be Chinese 
science is empirical and must be carefully sifted ; and foreign 
scientists have done little personal investigation on the island. 
But the subject was too important and too interesting to be 
neglected, and so in all our travels, estabhshing churches and 
exploring in the savage temtory, I carried with me my geologi- 
cal hammer, chisel, and lens, and brought back on nearly every 
occasion some valuable contribution to my museum at Tam- 
sui. I ever sought to train my students to have eyes to see 
and minds to understand nature's great message in sea and 
grove and mountain gorge. In the hope that readers may be 
interested without being burdened I shall set down here only 
sufficient to convey a general idea of the formations, deposits, 
and contents of the mountains and plains, and refer briefly to 
the influences and agencies at work in modifying the topog- 
raphy of the island. 

Formosa is a continental island which became separated 
from the mainland of China by the subsidence of the interven- 
ing land some time diuing the Tertiary period, and similar sub- 


Geological Map 


m BRmm 

I * I Sulp/iur 

[ fieoleart/?orc/ay. 
\ Limestone. 
\ Mma/so//. 

Granitfcoj , 

stoneTr3fipa?3n roc. 
m/M farton/terous M3/tiM 
wlmlk sj^tem/tiauartzmm 


si'dences have taken place all along the Chinese seaboard. 
Beginning at the south point of Kamtchatka iPeninsula, and 
embracing the Kurile, Japan, Loo-choo, Philippine, Borneo, 
Java, and Sumatra islands, we have Formosa about the middle 
of this hne, which once formed the eastern boundary of the 
Asiatic continent. The Okhotsk, Japan, Yellow, and China 
seas, with the Formosa Channel, cover the submerged lands. 
Formosa is still connected with the mainland by a bank sub- 
merged to the maximum depth of one hundred fathoms. This 
is, indeed, the deepest sounding anywhere near the island, but 
thirty miles oflf the eastern coast the soundings suddenly fall to 
the depth of one thousand fathoms, and going farther seaward 
to two thousand, three thousand, and four thousand fathoms, 
until the dark unsounded depths of the Pacific are reached. 

There have been, too, partial and total subsidences and ele- 
vations in the geological history of the island, and there are 
evidences of a total submergence to the depth of at least one 
hundred fathoms, during which period the coral insect built a 
layer to a considerable extent over its surface. Then came a 
sudden upheaval. The fierce energies within broke out with 
mighty volcanic action amid the. terrific thundering of nature's 
heavy artillery. The igneous rocks were lifted to the height of 
fifteen hundred feet above the surface of the ocean, and For- 
mosa was given back to the light of day. The coral was car- 
ried up to these mountain-peaks and then sent in huge masses 
tumbling down the sides. Heavy rains and sweeping storms 
carried it as debris out to sea. Remains are still found at the 
height of two thousand feet, and this, together with the coral 
reef whose arms are stretched out beneath the waters around 
the shore, attests the convulsions and changes of prehistoric 

The rocks of the island consist principally of sandstone, 
slate, graystone, gneiss, limestone, shale, granite and trappean 
compounds, basalt, cli^^stoiae, coal and coralline. In the 


sidences have taken place all along the Chinese seaboard. 
Beginning at the south point of Kamtchatka JPeninsuIa, and 
embracing the Kurile, Japan, Loo-choo, Philippine, Borneo, 
Java, and Sumatra islands, we have Formosa about the middle 
of this line, which once formed the eastern boundary of the 
Asiatic continent. The Okhotsk, Japan, Yellow, and China 
seas, with the Formosa Channel, cover the submerged lands. 
Formosa is still connected with the mainland by a bank sub- 
merged to the maximum depth of one hundred fathoms. This 
is, indeed, the deepest sounding anywhere near the island, but 
thirty miles off the eastern coast the soundings suddenly fall to 
the depth of one thousand fathoms, and going farther seaward 
to two thousand, three thousand, and four thousand fathoms, 
until the dark unsounded depths of the Pacific are reached. 

There have been, too, partial and total subsidences and ele- 
vations in the geological history of the island, and there are 
evidences of a total submergence to the depth of at least one 
hundred fathoms, during which period the coral insect built a 
layer to a considerable extent over its surface. Then came a 
sudden upheaval. The fierce energies within broke out with 
mighty volcanic action amid the, terrific thundering of nature's 
heavy artillery. The igneous rocks were lifted to the height of 
fifteen hundred feet above the surface of the ocean, and For- 
mosa was given back to the light of day. The coral was car- 
ried up to these mountain-peaks and then sent in huge masses 
tumbling down the sides. Heavy rains and sweeping storms 
carried it as debris out to sea. Remains are still found at the 
height of two thousand feet, and this, together with the coral 
reef whose arms are stretched out beneath the waters around 
the shore, attests the convulsions and changes of prehistoric 

The rocks of the island consist principally of sandstone, 
slate, graystone, gneiss, limestone, shale, granite and trappean 
compounds, basalt, cliriVstoxie, coal and coralline. In the 


northern, northeastern, and western sides there are ferru- 
ginous, argillaceous, gritty, and silicious sandstones, inter- 
mingled with carboniferous quartzite and solid schistose rock. 
The eastern precipitous cliflfs exhibit beautiful contorted gneiss 
and graystone masses. The curves and flexvues in the lines of 
stratification are marked with wonderful distinctness. Around 
So Bay, on the eastern coast, and extending south and north, 
pyritiferous slate is dominant. The iron pyrites are very abun- 
dant in the entire formation. Gray, brown, and reddish shales 
are common in the northern parts. Miea-schist and micaceous 
sandstone alternate with gneiss, and appear contorted, dis- 
placed, and filled with lodes of quartz, varying from one eighth 
of an inch to several inches, which ran through the fissures 
when the mass was in a molten state. Massive limestone of 
bluish-gray color is found with shales and gritty sandstones. 
On the right bank of the Kelung River, near Pat-chien-na, 
there is an interesting formation of quartzose sandstone, com- 
posed of quartz-grains colored with iron oxide. It was evi- 
dently carried by the waters through the valley and deposited 
along the flanks of volcanic rock^ which were vomited as 
molten material long before the now valuable quarry became 
cemented into hard rock. Tai-tun range is itself a mass of 
dark-blue igneous rock, with an extinct crater twenty-five 
hundred and seventy-five feet high on the southwest side. 
Quan-yin Mountain is of the same material, and is extensively 
quarried and dressed for door-steps, lintels, pillars, and the 
foundations of buildings. Already such rocks are called quan- 
yin stone by natives. 

Coal is known to abound in two thirds of the island, and it 
is more than probable that seams of different depths extend the 
whole distance from north to south. The best-known mines 
are at Poeh-tau, near Kelung. It is all bituminous, and is so 
dislocated by upheavals and convulsions that the strata are full 
of faults and fissures, which render the work less remunerative 


than it might othenvise be. Europeans employed by a gov- 
ernor sank a shaft, but there was so much blasting and cutting 
of sandstone that it has never been a profitable enterprise. 
Natives start at the outcrop at the side of a hill, following the 
seam on its incline ; they dig with picks, and with a small hand- 
sleigh drag the pieces out. Opposite the Sin-tiam church there 
is a seam two feet thick, tilted almost perpendicular, and there 
it stands between the equally dislocated sandstone rocks. 
Lignite occurs in a few sandstone ranges on the western 

Petroleum is found at several points between West Peak and 
Au-lang. At the seaside I took up a bottleful and kept it for 
ten years. It appeared like olive-oil and burned with ease, 
giving a bright light. Two' Americans from Pennsylvania were 
employed by the Chinese to sink a shaft, but at three hundred 
feet the drills broke and the enterprise was abandoned. 

Natural gas is obtained in several localities, and one has 
only to remove the black soil to the depth of a foot or two, 
strike a match, and in an instant the whole will be ablaze. 

Salt. — Rock-salt has not been found in the island, but the 
aborigines in the Kap-tsu-lan plain have a process by which 
they extract the salt from the sea-water. Large quantities of 
the water are poured over the hot sand on the beach until for 
an inch or two in depth it becomes thoroughly impregnated. 
This sand is then collected into a large iron leach-tub, to which 
heat is applied, and into which more sea-water is poured. 
The water, percolating, carries the salt with it, and when 
evaporated a beautiful white salt remains. 

Sulphur is found in great abundance, especially in the 
north. The best springs are at Kang-tau, near the Kelung 
River. I visited them in October, 1872. That was the first 
time I had seen so strange a sight. Descending from the 
height overlooking the Bang-kah plain, we found a winding 
path, along which we hurried up the valley till we reached the 


springs. The ground, as we approached, resounded to our 
feet like the rumbling of distant thunder. The narrow valley 
was a place of interest and beauty. A score of springs boiling 
and roaring, hissing like a ^xeat Mogul engine, sent up clouds 
of steam and poured out volumes of hot sulphur-water. The 
sides of the boulders and ihe lips of the crevices were all 
flaked with beautiful golden colored sulphur. A bath at any 
temperature could easily be obtained, but the Formosans know 
nothing about the medicinal properties of their sulphur-springs. 
A valuable sulphur industry is carried on by the government. 
Coohes are employed in the neighborhood of the springs, dig- 
ging up raw material, a lava-Uke substance, grayish in color. 
When this is melted in huge pans the sulphur comes to the 
surface, the sediment, when hard, being a beautiful specimen 
of igneous rock. There is another region, northeast by north, 
with solfatara springs ; but by far the largest spring is seaward 
from Vulcan's Peak, fifty-six hundred and fifty feet high, 
on the way to Kim-pau-li. There it is hissing, roaring, and 
bellowing, like tons of blazing oil in a seething caldron. 
Sea-captains often mistake Vulcan's Peak for an active volcano. 
In from Sin-tiam, within the mountains, there is a region where 
the fires became extinct less than one hundred years ago. 

Iron in some form must exist in the interior of the island, for 
at the sea-shore one can easily fill a cup with hematite of iron 
by dipping a magnet and collecting the particles adhering to it. 
There are also chalybeate springs along the bases of many hills 
and mountains. 

Gold was discovered in 1890 by a Chinese workman who 
had been in California and Australia, and who was engaged in 
excavating for the erection of a railway-bridge over the Kelung 
River. Reports of this fact having been circulated, multitudes 
were soon attracted to the place, and were from dayHght to 
dark digging for the precious metal. Gold-bearing rocks in the 
interior are carboniferous quartzites, slaty and schistose, with 


lodes < i quartz. It is difficult to estimate the quantity procured 
annually, although it must be considerable. 

Great physical changes are continually taking place on the 
island. What was once a large and beautiful lake is now the 
fertile Bang-kah plain. Storms and freshets brought down 
vegetable matter from the mountains, and the bottom of the 
lake was gradually elevated. Meanwhile the waters were 
grinding and pressing against the spur that joined the Tai-tun 
and Quan-yin mountains, forming the lower bank of the lakd. 
At some time a violent earthquake-shock rent this spur, and 
the waters rushed madly down to the sea, leaving behind 
a rich alluvial plain, and cutting what is now the channel of 
the Tamsui River, 

Earthquakes are very common and do enormous damage. 
In 1 89 1 on one day four shocks were felt, and a month later 
two more. Years ago at Kelung rumbling sounds were heard 
and the waters of the harbor receded until fish of all sizes wer 
left wriggling and floundering in the mud and pools. Women 
and children rushed out to secure such rare and enticing 
prizes, but shrieks from the shore warned them of the return 
of the water. Back it came, furious as a charge of battle, 
overleaping its appointed bounds, and sweeping away all the 
houses in the low-lying land along the shore. The story of that 
tidal wave is handed down as one of the great catastrophes in 
history. At Kim-pau-H, not many years ago, a shock was felt. 
Rice-fields suddenly sank three feet, and the sulphurous water 
rose and still covers the place. Sugar-cane is now cultivated 
in large tracts where boatmen plied their oars in 1872, and the 
waters of the Tamsui River glide over places where stood vil- 
lages in which I preached the gospel twenty-three years ago. 
Changes are taking place, too, all along the shore. One might 
suppose that the hard rocks on the east coast would be able to 
resist all forces and influences. But no ; tides and waves of the 
great Pacific tunnel, undermine, and wear away the bases of th? 


rocks, till needles, statics, and arches stand up to attest the in- 
ward march of the water. On the west coast, however, there 
is compensation, for there the land is encroaching fast upon the 
sea. During heavy rains the rivers transport large quantities of 
mud, sand, and gravel from the mountains into the Formosa 
Channel, building sand-bars, mud-banks, and extensive shoals, 
as though the island sought to bridge again a pathway back to 
the parent land. 

What mighty changes! What resistless power! Atmo- 
spheric, organic, aqueous, chemical, and volcanic agencies are 
ever at work lowering the mountains, elevating the seas, chang- 
ing the face of nature. But note it well : they are blind and 
mighty forces, but they are all under control of Him who lay- 
eth the beams of his chambers in the waters, who maketh the 
clouds his chariots, the flaming fire his ministers, who walketh 
upon the wings of the wind, and by whom the foundations of 
the earth were laid that it should not be removed forever. We 
will not fear though the earth do change, though the mountains 
be carried into the midst of the sea. The eternal God is our 
refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms. I will sing 
unto the Lord as long as I live ; I will sing praises unto my 
God while I have my being. 

Botanical Map 




THE richness of the soil and the humidity of the climate 
conspire to produce a luxuriant vegetation in Formosa. 
Trees, plants, and flowers literally cover the ground. Apart 
from a few exposed rocks, the crevices, ravines, and boulders 
are overgrown with ferns, plants, grasses, and creepers of all 
kinds and sizes. The trees are not tall, but large, having 
enormous branches. The mountain-sides are clothed from 
top to bottom with tangled undergrowth and trees of every 
possible shade of yellow and green. Reference will be made 
in this chapter to the many varieties found in this botanical 
garden of nature. For the sake of brevity the names only of 
many common or imimportant plants and flowers are men- 

I. Forest-trees 

1. Shaulam {Thuya Formosana) is found in the mountains, 
in rocky places, and upon the bare rock. It is an excellent 
lumber-tree, has a beautiful grain, and when varnished with 
certain Chinese preparations it takes on a fine finish that re- 
flects objects like a mirror, and is the best in Formosa for 
cabinet-work. It is nothing unusual to see boards and planks 
of it from two to eight feet in breadth. 

2. Oak {Quercus ilex)^ a pretty evergreen, of which there 
are several varieties. It is hard red wood, which is used in 
the manufacture of hoe, ax, and adz handles. 





THE richness of the soil and the humidity of the climate 
conspire to produce a luxuriant vegetation in Formosa. 
Trees, plants, and flowers literally cover the ground. Apart 
from a few exposed rocks, the crevices, ravines, and boulders 
are overgrown with ferns, plants, grasses, and creepers of all 
kinds and sizes. The trees are not tall, but large, having 
enormous branches. The mountain-sides are clothed from 
top to bottom with tangled undergrowth and trees of every 
possible shade of yellow and green. Reference will be made 
in this chapter to the many varieties found in this botanical 
garden of nature. For the sake of brevity the names only of 
many common or unimportant plants and flowers are men- 

I. Forest-trees 

1. Shaulam {Thuya Formosand) is found in the mountains, 
in rocky places, and upon the bare rock. It is an excellent 
lumber-tree, has a beautiful grain, and when varnished with 
certain Chinese preparations it takes on a fine finish that re- 
flects objects hke a mirror, and is the best in Formosa for 
cabinet-work. It is nothing unusual to see boards and planks 
of it from two to eight feet in breadth. 

2. Oak [Quercus ilex)^ a pretty evergreen, of which there 
are several varieties. It is hard red wood, which is used in 
the manufacture of hoe, ax, and adz handles. 



3, Tallow-tree {Stillingia azebifera). The berry of this tree, 
after the covering falls off, is about the size of a pea, whitish 
in color, and hangs in clusters from the branches. The tallow 
is extracted from the berry by pressure, and is made into 
candles, which, when -painted red, are used for idol-worship, 
especially in Buddhistic temples. The leaves of the tree re- 
semble those of the Canadian poplar, but in autumn they as- 
sume the red and yellow tints of the soft maple. 

4. Mulberry {Morus nigra). This tree is indigenous and 
grows everywhere. An attempt was made to establish a silk 
industry on the island, and the silkworm was introduced. 
But the leaves of the mulberry proved coarser than those on 
the mainland, and the raw silk being of inferior quality, the 
enterprise was abandoned. 

• 5. Fir. This is planted to protect the tea-plantations from 
winds and storms. 

6. Pine. Only a few small pines are found, and they are 
seen on the sides of the mountains. 

7. Camphor {Laurus camphora). Camphor-trees are the 
largest in the forests. On measuring one I found it twenty- 
five feet in circumference. There is in my possession a plank 
which a hundred years ago was the end of a native chief's 
house. It is a single piece of more than eight feet square, and 
on it are many aboriginal carvings. Camphor-gum does not 
run like sap from the sugar-maple, nor does it exude like pitch 
from the pine. It is prociu-ed in the following way : An adz 
half an inch broad, and with a handle two feet long, is used 
as a gouge. With this the roots, stumps, and branches of the 
tree are chipped. These chips are collected and placed in a 
sort of covered steamer over boiling water. In due course 
the gum is distilled, and sublimates on the inside of the vessel 
like hoar-frost. The process of distilling is continued until a 
•sufficient quantity is collected, when it is put up in tubs for 
export. As the demand is great in European countries, 


the camphor industry is one of the most important on the 

8. Paper-plant {Aralia papyrifera). The so-called rice-paper 
is made from the pith, of this plant. The roll of pith, varying 
from half an inch to three inches in diameter, is cut into pieces 
according to the width of paper desired. It is then placed 
upon a very smooth tile, shaped somewhat after the fashion of 
a slate, with a brass frame the thickness of the paper raised 
above the edges. The operator, having made the pith per- 
fectly smooth and cyUndrical, rolls it backward over the tile 
with his left hand, and with his right pares it concentrically 
with a long, sharp, thick-backed knife. The knife rests on 
the brass frame, which serves as a gauge, and is drawn steadily 
back and forth. A beautiful paper is thus cut, which is used 
in making artificial flowers, or is exported to Hong Kong, where 
it is used in the manufacture of sun-hats. Chinese artists find 
large employment in painting cards of this paper, which are 
readily disposed of to European and American tourists. 

9. Pung-tree {Liquidambar Formosana). This beautiful tree 
resembles soft maple. The leaves, especially when preyed 
between the fingers, are quite fragrant. 

10. Bead-tree [Melia Azedarach). This tree grows very rap- 
idly. When about a foot in diameter its wide-spreading 
branches and lovely lijac flowers present a picture very at- 
tractive to a lover of nature. 

11. Banian {Ficus Indica), There can be no doubt that 
the banian is a long-lived tree. Of all the several hundred 
trees now in the college grotini3s at Tamsui, I planted every 
one from small branches, two inches through and five or six 
feet long. These were cut from large trees which survived 
several centuries of tropical storm The banian is an ever- 
green, with rootlets running from the branches, which, if not 
interfered with, eventually reach the groimd, take root, and 
grpw as a support to the tree. The process of extension and 


reduplication may go on until the branches, supported by 
their self-produced pillars, cover a vast area, and the original 
tree becomes an evergreen canopy under which thousands may 

find shelter. 

\2. Willow [Salix). As is to be expected, willows of differ- 
ent varieties are found growing on the lowlands and on the 
banks of streams. 

13. Screw-pine {Fandanus). The leaves of this tree are 
arranged spirally in three rows, and bear some resemblance to 
those of the pineapple; thente the name screw-pine. The 
fruit, when ripe, is also similar in appeajcance to the pineappL-, 
but is not edible. These trees are planted in the sandy dis- 
tricts for hedges. The leaves, when withered, are used for 
fuel, and the rootlets, cut a foot in length and hammered out, 
are used for brushes. 

14. Vamish-tree {Rhus vernicifera). The exudations from 
this tree become an excellent varnish ; but it must be used in 
a dark room, and the varnished article must be left there until 
it is thoroughly dry. It is very poisonous, and the effect on 
different persons is very singular. I was once in a cabinet- 
maker's establishment, remaining only a few minutes ; but sucii 
was the effect of the varnish-poison that for three days after- 
ward my fingers were swollen to three times their normal size, 
my face had a dropsical appearance, and my eyelids could 
scarcely be opened. It was not so painful, but it was very 
irritating and intensely disagreeable. The natives now eat the 
fruit, though doubtless in days gone by they dipped their 
arrows in the excretion to make them deadly weapons. 

15. Thorn. This, as a tree, or as -a creeper along the 
ground, with spines of different lengths, is often met with on 
the hillsides. 

16. Tree-fern. This lovely plant is' unsurpassed in beauty 
by even the stately palm. In well-sheltered valleys it stands 
fifty«or sixty feet high, with fronds varying from ten to fifteen 


feet in length. It is used for posts, and its wood is manufactured 
into cigar-boxes. 

17. Rattan {Calamus rotang) is a species of palm. It grows 
from twelve to twenty feet high ; then "it begins to creep along 
in a vine-like fashion over other plants and above the branches 
of trees, until it reaches fully five hundred feet. In pulling it 
out the woodman often falls a prey to the savage head-hunter. 
The exportation of rattan is aii important industry. 

18. Red bamboo. This is an ornamental tree, with reddish 
stems and leaves, but it does not belong to the bamboo family. 
It is a Dractzna ferrea. 

19. Betel-nut {Areca Catechu). "This is an elegant tree, 
straight as a rod, rising sometimes to the height of fifty feet. 
Leaves are found at the top only. Its fruit is the well-known 
betel-nut, which is extensively used for chewing by the Malay- 
ans in Formosa and other islands, as a kind of intoxicant. 
This nut is the pledge of reconciliation. When offered by 
one and accepted by another, it is tmderstood that the hatchet 
is buried. 

20. Betel-pepper {Chavica Bet.'e). This is a creeper that is 
often planted by the aborigines beside the betel-tree, up which 
it is trained to grow. The leaf of this creeper has a pleasant 
taste and is much reUshed by the native tribes, who chew it 
all day long with the betel-nut dipped in lime. This is a filthy 
and injurious habit. 

21. Castor-oil plant {Ricinus). There are two species in the 
north — the one with green stems and leaves, the other, more 
lovely, with purple branches, leaves, and stems. Although 
indigenous and of rapid growth, the seeds from which the oil 
is produced are not utilized by the people. 

22. Soap-tree [Sapindus Saponafia). The fruit is about the 
size of marbles, grayish in color, with a kernel inside. Savage; 
and others on th** border-land use it when washing clothes. 
But the style of washing is unique. Whether it be done at 


ponds, creeks, or rivers, the garments are laid upon a plank 
or a flat stone at the edge of the water. With a stick two 
inches thick and two feet long, the garments are first pounded, 
then rubbed with soap-tree seeds, turned over, and pounded 
and rubbed again and again. When the clothes are con- 
sidered sufficiently clean they are given a final rinse and taken 


23. Chestnut-tree {Castanea vulgaris). This tree grows to 
a height of fifty or sixty feet in the mountains, and produces 
fruit similar to that of the same family in America. 

24. Cedar {Thuya orientalis). These are not large, and are 
grown more for the purpose of ornamentation than utility. 

25. Cayenne pepper {Capsicum Sinensc). "Chilli" is the 
Mexican name for all the varieties. That in Formosa is a 
shrub two or three feet high, is very common, and the pods 
are much used for domestic purposes. 

26. Kiu-kiong {Lagerstra^mia Indica). This is a very hard, 
firm, close-grained wood, and is used for seals, knobs, and 
other articles of that nature. 

27. Wild mango {Cerbera Odollam), Vvhich grows to the 
height of twenty feet, has evergreen, waxy leaves. Its fruit is. 
very pecuhar and is about the size of a hen's egg. At first it 
is green, but afterward it becomes a beautiful reddish pink. 
But how deceptive! Inside it is nothing more nor less than 
dry fiber, neither useful nor ornamental. 

'28. Pho-chhiu {Celtis Sinensis). This tree resembles the 
peach, but "Its wood, which is soft and white, is not valuable 
as timber. 

II. Fruits and Fruit-trees 

1. Longan {Nephelium Longanum). This is about the size 
of a cherry, with a thin, bark-like rind. Within that rind 
there is a pulp which is edible, and in the center a kernel, 
black outside and white within. 


2. Loquat {Eryoboirya Japonica). This is a yellow, juicy 
fruit, with a kernel edible both in the natural state and when 

3. Persimmon {Diospyros). Of this there are several vari- 
eties, but one is peculiar to Formosa. The most common is 
red and about the size and shape of a tomato, for which, 
indeed, it might easily be mistaken. The other is hard and 
green, and is eaten after being cut and dipped in water. 

4. Arbutus or strawberry-tree {Arbutus U?iedo). It resembles 
a strawberry, but one has to acquire a taste for it before rel- 
ishincr it. It is often pickled and used as a condiment. 

5. Angular fruit [Averrhoa Carambola). This is a peculiar 
fruit of angular shape, two inches long, and of yellow-green 
color. When ripe it is very juicy, of a green-gooseberry flavor, 
and is much relished. 

6. Pomelo or shaddock {Citrus decumana). The formation 
of this fruit is sectional, similar to that of the orange ; but it is 
considerably larger, being about the size of a citron. There 
are several species of it. The fruit of one is reddish, and of 
another whitish. The latter is preferred by foreigners. 

7. Banana {Musa textilis). The stem of the banana is soft 
and does not resemble that of hard trees. The young shoot 
springs near the old plant, which falls after the fruit is ripened. 
In one year there may be three successive bunches, each weigh- 
ing about forty pounds. The ground around a banana-tree is 
always wet, and where cultivated the neighborhood is more or 
less malarious. 

8. Orange {Citrus Aurantium). The sweet and bitter grow 
here. There is a wild orange found in the forest, but it is much 
smaller than the cultivated one. There is one species which 
bears white flowers and golden fruit at the same time. The 
natives call it the " four-season " orange. 

9. Plum {Prunus domestica). Considering the little attention 
paid to its cultivation, the Formosa plum must be described as 


excellent. One kind is reddish to the pit and makes a deli- 
cious preserve. 

10. Pear {Pyrus communis). This is hard and woody, like 
its wild uncultivated cousin in the West. 

11. Crab-apple {Pyrus Malus). The apple is indigenous. 
How interesting and suggestive the fact that we have in For- 
mosa the original of the northern spy, maiden's-blush, pip- 
pin, baldwin — indeed, of all the varieties of apple known in 
the world ; and that the difference between these fine fruits 
and this scrawny crab is the result of horticultural care and . 
cultivation ! 

12. Guava {Psidium). The tree which bears this fruit is to 
be found growing eight or ten feet high all over the hills ; but 
it is also cultivated in gardens or orchards, and its fruit is im- 
proved thereby. The natives salt it when green and eat it 
when ripe. 

13. Pomegranate {Punka granatum). The dark scarlet 
flowers of the pomegranate are of surpassing beauty, but as 
compared with that of Palestine the fruit is not to be desired. 

14. Lime {Citrus Limetta). The rind of this fruit is dense, of 
a greenish-yellow color, and really excellent when ripe. It has 
a bitter taste. There are also " four-season " limes, producing 
fruit and flowers at the same time. 

15. Citron {Citrus fnedica). It is much larger than the hme, 
and has a thick, tuberous rind. Its pulp is not so acid as that 
of the lime. 

16. Peach {Persica vulgaris). The wild peach is small, round, 
and hairy, but the grafted variety is delicious when fully ripe, 

17. Pineapple {Ananassa sativa). The best pineapples grow 
in light loam in the vicinity of the sulphur-springs. The plants 
are two feet high. One looking at them growing in the dis- 
tance might mistake them for a garden of cabbages. Expor- 
tation is more disastrous to this fruit than to any other. One 
who has eaten the rich and luscious pineapple in its native For- 


mosa cannot endure the very best offered for sale in foreign 

18. Mango {Mangifera Indica). Nothing can be said in 
praise of this fruit as it is found in North Formosa. It has 
the taste of turpentine. 

19. Papaw {Carica Papaya). The tree which produces this 
fruit grows to the height of about twenty feet. The fruit itself 
is very edible, is yellow when ripe, and has a milky juice. 
Formosan mothers boil this fruit in the raw state, and eat it 
with pork, for they believe that on such a diet they can more 
liberally nourish their babes. 

20. Jujube [Zizyphus Jujuba). The jujube-tree grows to 
the height of thirty feet. Its fruit is eaten by the natives, but 
is somewhat insipid. 

21. Breadfruit {Artocarpusincisd). This fruit is used by the 
aborigines exclusively. The plant has a viscid, milky juice. 

22. Lichi {Nepheliufn Litchi). It has a soft pulp, which is 
very delicious. It is often dried with sugar and used as a pre- 

23. Hong-kaw {Nauclea cordifolia). This is a yellow fruit, 
and is sHghtly larger than the egg of a common gray-bird. 

24. Raspberry. Both red and black varieties grow in 
abtmdance everywhere on the cleared hills; but though the 
fruit looks full and enticing when ripe, it has not the flavor of 
the Western berry, and is never eaten, unless, indeed, occasion- 
ally by the herd-boys. 

25. Fig {Ficus). The only indigenous fig is a creeping one, 
which is a parasite. Starting out self-dependent near a tree, it 
will fasten itself to the trunk and climb up till it reaches and 
overshadows the topmost branches. The Chinese regard the 
fruit, when boiled to a jelly, as valuable for medicinal purposes. 

26. There is a creeping plant which produces a berry some- 
what similar to the strawberry. 


III. Fibrous Plants 

At the outset it is well to state that there is no hemp, flax, 
or cotton in North Formosa. 

1. Jute [Corchorus capsularis). This grows ten or twelve 
feet high, and is manufactujed into cords, bags, and cables. 

2. Grass-cloth or rhea (Boehmeria nivea). It is cultivated 
with great care, fertilized with liquid manure, and made into 
grass-cloth and cords. It is found in Assam, Nepaul, and 

3. Triangular rush ( Cyprus tegetiformis). This grows in brack- 
ish water, and is cultivated in the Tai-kah region, at the boun- 
dary of our mission. That place, indeed, has become famovLS 
for its bed-mats made from this material. The mats vary in 
price from two to five dollars each. 

4. Banana. Out of the fibers of the stem a thin summer 
cloth is manufactvired, 

5. Pineapple. Very luscious. Out of its leaves a cloth is 
made, similar to that made from the banana fibers. 

6. Dwarf palm. Cords are made from the fibers of the bark. 

7. Rain-coat {Chamcerops excelsa). The brown fibers near 
the 'leaf-sheets are sewn together with threads of the same 
material. The product is converted into coats which are worn 
during the heavy rains by peasants and boatmen. The coat is 
certainly a durable one, for even though exposed to sun and 
rain for fifteen years it will not rot. 

8. Paper-mulberry {Broussonetia papyri/era). The bark is 
stripped from the trunk and lower branches, and afterward 
immersed in tubs containing water ; but the liquid is not ready 
for use for several days. When it is prepared, a framework 
four feet square is made, and on it is fastened a coarse mate- 
rial like bag stuff. The fic^me is held on an incline and the 
liquid is poured gently over the canvas. The lower end of the 
framework is then raised until the liquid spreads evenly over 


the surface and begins to thicken. It is then returned to the 
incUned position and exposed to the drying rays of the sun. 
The result is a sheet of gray paper resembling the material in 
a wasp's nest. This paper is oiled and used in umbrella manu- 
facture instead of cloth. 

9. G6th6 [Alpinia Chinensis). It grows wild on the hills, 
among shrubs, everywhere. The leaves are long, and the 
flowers are white and waxy, and yellow within. The fibers 
are used in the manufacture of soles for one kind of grass 

IV. Leguminous Plants 

1. Indigo {Indigof era tinctoria). There are two species. One, 
with a small leaf, is cultivated in a sandy loam ; the other, with 
large leaves not unlike the Irish potato, is cultivated in new 
land, sometimes around stumps. 

2. Ground-nut or peanut {Arachis hypogxa). The appear- 
ance of this plant in the field is hke clover. It has pretty yel- 
low blossoms. The legumes are produced underground ; hence 
the Chinese name, lok-hoa-seng. To dig the nuts is very 
laborious work. The Chinese, therefore, make what pioneers 
used to call a "bee," and from fifty to one hundred men, 
women, and children can be seen together digging with 
little scoops in the right hand, and picking up the nuts with 
the left. They are usually boiled and have salt thrown over 
them, or else roasted. Every rice-stall throughout the coun- 
try has these useful peanuts on the table. From them an oil 
is expressed which is used for both food and light. 

3. Beans, of which there are many varieties, are cultivated 

4. Peas are less common and have fewer varieties. 

5. Siusi {Arbus precaiorius). This has long, narrow leaves 
and very lovely -round yellow flowers. There are rows of 
it in the college grounds, and when all the branches are a 


mass of yellow the sight is charming. Nearly a^l the tea-plan- 
tations have these trees planted around to protect them from 
the wind. 

6. Sensitive-plant {Mimosa sensitiva) grows wild in culti- 
vated locahties. 

7. Vetch {Vicia Cracca). This is not unlike the bean, and is 
found both wild and under cultivation. 

8. Cessimum, sometimes called til. It is a Cessimum orien- 
fale, and has black seeds, from which a bland oil, dark in color, 
is made. This is very highly prized by the Chinese ; in fact, it 
is considered almost a household necessity. 

V. Grasses 

1. Rice {Oryza sativa). This is the great staple of the land. 
Its cultiu-e is explained at length in another chapter. 

2. Wheat ( Tritkum viilgare). This cereal is sown in Novem- 
ber and harvested in May. At best the crop is poor, and 
now that American flour is imported its cultivation is rapidly- 

3. Barley {Hordeutn vulgare). There is but little barley 
grown anywhere, on the island. 

4. Maize {Zea Mays). This is cultivated by both Chinese 
and savages. When the grains are quite hard it is boiled and 
eaten off the cob. 

5. Millet {Panicum miliaceum). Of this there are different 
varieties. One kind fs only three feet high, while another, the 
Sorghum vulgare, grows to the height of ten feet in good soil. 

6. Oats are not cultivated. I experimented with Cana- 
dian seeds. They produced straw four feet high, which was 
like stalks of reed, but the kernels were worthless. 

7. Sugar-cane {Sacchanim Sinense velolaceum). There are 
two kind of sugar-cane cultivated, the one for chewing, and 
the other for the manufacture of brown sugar for export. 


8. Bamboo {Bambusa arundinacea). There is one large 
species which is split and made into baskets, , hoops, etc. 
Another kind grows to about the size of a lar^e fishing-rod. 
There is still another with small and feathery leaves which is 
planted for hedges. The yoiing shoots are cut off and used 
for pickles. Boats, houses, bridges, baskets, chairs, hen-coops, 
bird-cages, jars, water-vessels, pipes, lamps, beds, masts, doors, 
hoops, mats, paper, are all made from this indispensable grass. 
The savages also make earrings out of it, and the only musical 
instruments they possess. It is to the Chinese what the cocoa- 
nut is to the South Sea Islander and the date-palm to the 
African. It rarely flowers or produces seed, so that when 
flowers are seen those who are very superstitious declare that 
some great change will certainly soon take place. 
9. Couch-grass {Triticum repens) grows wild. 

10. Sand-grass [Fsamma arenand). 

11. A most useful reed {Saccharum proceruni). 

There are numerous grasses, many of which bear red, white, 
or black seeds. These seeds are used as beads by the wild 
mountaineers. A most useful reed, lo-tek or arunde, is used 
by builders ; and the cellular tissues of lampwick {Lepironia) 
we used in the early days in our little bamboo lamps. 

VI. Bulbous Plants 

I. Sweet potato {Batatas edu lis). This is really a convol- 
vulus, with pretty flowers, creeping tendrils, and large bulbs 
underground. It must be distinguished from the ordinary 
potato which produces such nutritious tubers, and which be- 
longs to a different order, the Solatium tuberosum. The bulb 
of the sweet potato is planted in March. In about six weeks 
the vines are cut into pieces eight inches long, which are 
planted in drills, and from these vine-cuttings the bulbs grow, 
and are ripe about the end of June. A second crop is planted 


in a similar way in July and is ripe in November. Bulbs are 
never grown from bulbs, but invariably from vine-cuttings. 
There are three varieties, which differ in size, shape, and color. 

2. Yam [Dioscorea sativa). There are several kinds — one 
white, another reddish, a third grows in water, while several 
others are produced on dry land on the hillsides. The dye- 
yam, which is procured from the mountains, is used mainly by 
the fishermen for dyeing their nets, clothes, and ropes. 

3. Hoan-koah. This has a leaf in seven divisions, palmate 
in form. Above-ground it is a creeping vine. The tubers, one 
foot long, are beneath the surface. They are dried, grated to 
powder, and used for food. 

4. Taro {Aracacece). Also edible, similar to the yam. 

5. Turmeric {^Curcuma longa). The branches of the root- 
stalk are used as a coloring-matter, medicine, and condiment. 
The powder which is made from the root-stalk is of a lemon- 
yellow color. This enters largely into the composition of ciu-ry- 

VII. Vegetables 

1. Pumpkin {Cucurbita ynaximd). . It grows to a large size. 
One can occasionally be found weighing as much as sixty 
pounds. The savages have a sraall, sweet variety. 

2. Squash [Cucurbita Aftlo-pcpd). Of considerable size. 

3. Cucumber {Cucumis sativus). The common variety grows 
larger than in America, and besides there is a large, soft, 
and good species which is pickled and used extensively with 

4. Melon {Cucumis Melo). This compares favorably with 
that found in the West. 

5. Watermelon (Cucumis Citrulius). This is extensively 
grown on sandy soil, and is very refreshing. 

6. Bottle-gourd (Cticurbita Lagenaria). When young and 
tender this vegetable is sometimes eaten, but it is generally 


cultivated for its value as a water-bottle, water-dipper, water- 
jar, or a jar for holding coral-lime. 

7. Water-cress {Lepidium sativum). An excellent water-cress 
is found in running streams, but it is rather strange that people 
who eat and enjoy so many herbs and vegetables of all de- 
scriptions should never partake of the wholesome cress. The 
European sailors, however, especially the blue-jackets from 
her Britannic Majesty's ships, soon found it out, and now 
they can often be seen with their bonnets full, returning to the 
ship to enjoy a fresh deUcacy at mess. 

8. Tomato [Solanum or Lycopersicum esculentum). The 
tomato is truly indigenous, for it grows wild on cleared spots 
within the mountains, among shrubs, and beside pathways. For 
years I tried to induce the Pe-po-hoan to grow and use the 
tomato, but so far my efforts have been in vain. The Chinese 
themselves have an intense disUke to the taste. This is to be 
regretted, for the large cultivated variety could be grown with 
little trouble. 

9. Brinjal {Solanum Melongend). The fruit is of a purple 
color, five or six inches in length and an inch in thickness. It 
grows on a plant somewhat Hke a standing tomato when about 
eighteen inches high. It is sliced lengthwise, boiled, dipped 
in sauce, and eaten. 

ID. White cabbage [Brassica). There are several varieties, 
which have been derived from Brassica oleracea, the original 
species. The foreign drumhead cabbage has been introduced 
and cultivated successfully. Occasionally one is found weigh- 
ing twenty pounds. 

11. Onion [Allitifn Cepa). The bulb is very small. The 
whole plant, having been boiled to dissipate the phosphoric 
acid, is eaten as a rehsh with rice. 

12. Leek [Allium Porrum). This is used as the onion, but 
it is preferred when it is in blossom. 

13. Garlic {Allium sativum). This is extensively cujtivjited 


and used for its well-known irritant, stimulating, and diuretic 

14. Celery [Apuun gravcoletis). This is used green, never 
blanched. It is boiled, cut into pieces an inch long, and eaten 
with rice. 

15. Spinach [Sj>i?iacia olcracea). It is used as an esculent 

16. Turnip [Brasska rapa). The different varieties are all 
white. One large kind resembles that in Western lands. It is 
sliced, salted, and thus prepared for future use. The small 
round variety is very sweet and succulent. 

17. Bean [Papilionacece). Many types of bean are found, 
some white, others black ; some flat, others round ; some large, 
others small. They are all edible. The pods of a creeper in 
the forest are sometimes two feet in length, while the cultivated 
bean, which grows over water on trellis-work, is eighteen inches 
long. The DoUchos soga might be designated the oil-bean. 

18. Pea [PapiliojiacecE). It is planted, not sown broadcast, 
and its pods, when small, are picked, boiled, and used as a 

ig. Lettuce [Laciuca sativa). This is never used in the raw 
state, but is always boiled before being eaten. Its property of 
alleviating pain and inducing sleep is well understood. 

20. Parsley [Ptirosclifium sativum) is cooked in lard before 
it is put on the table. 

21. Mustard [Brasska Sif tapis). This, when salted, is the 
staple vegetable among the peasants. 

22. Coriander [Coriandum 'sativum) is used as a salad, 
dipped in soy. 

23. Fennel {Fceniculum vulgare) is sometimes used as a food, 
but more frequently as a medicine. 

24. Ginger [Zingiber officiuak). This very useful plant at- 
tains the height of about a foot, and has long, pointed leaves. 
The rhizomes or roots are taken when green, sliced, and pre- 


pared as a relish. Around the city of Tekchham there has 
sprung up quite an industry in preparing it for market. It is 
preserved dry, in sugar, in small earthen pots. It is not in 
any way like the preparation in Canton which is brought into 
Western lands. Plums, peaches, and pears are preserved in 
small earthen pots like the Tek-chham ginger. 

25. Ka-pek-sun [Cyperus). This is a sedge found in drains, 
watercourses, and rivulets. The shoots, in the autumn, are 
used daily at meals. The root, when sliced, is of a whitish 
color, with black spots. It is truly a well-flavored, palatable 

VIII. Other Kinds of Plants 

1. Tobacco {Nicotiana Tabacnm). On the eastern coast 
tobacco grows sometimes ten feet high. I never saw a living 
creature put to death more expeditiously than was a venomous 
serpent one day when we were erecting Oxford College. He 
was found under a heap of tiles. One laborer pinned him to 
the ground with a pole. Another took from his tobacco-pipe 
a small quantity of nicotine and put it to the mouth of the rep- 
tile. Instantly his snakeship drew himself up, stretched him- 

. self out, shuddered, and, being released, turned his whitish 
belly upward and expired. I would have thought this incred- 
ible had I not witnessed it. It should be stated, however, that 
the said pipe was an heirloom for four generations. No won- 
der the nicotine was somewhat rank. 

2. Tea ( Caffiellia theifera). The tea-plant is grown on the up- 
lands and hillsides. It is generally planted in rows, and attains 
a height of several feet. The pickers, stooping down, go be- 
tween the rows and pluck the tender leaves with both hands, 
depositing them in baskets strapped on their backs. Tea- 
leaves are first of all dried in the sun. At times they are 
trampled with the bare feet, then partially dried in heated 


pans, after which they are taken in sacks to the tea-houses in 
the city. There they are refired with great care, picked, and 
graded according to quahty. Hundreds of women and chil- 
dren can be seen on low stools engaged in sorting during the 
tea season. Flowers are used to flavor the tea, especially the 
gardenia, which is cultivated in fields for this express purpose. 
Tea is the universal beverage, and it is the badge of hospital- 
ity. The moment one enters a cot, however humble, the order 
is issued, "Tsoa te" ("Infuse tea"). A few leaves are put 
into a tea-cup and boiling water poured over them, and that 
cup is the one from which the tea is sipped. Neither milk nor 
sugar is eyfer used by the natives in their tea. 

3. Dandelion [Leoniodon Taraxacum). This is similar to its 
New World relative. 

4. Common thistle [Carduus). Similar to the common bull- 
thistle, but smaller. This is the only variety found on the 

5. Mint [Mentha). The three varieties are found — pepper- 
mint, spearmint, and pennyroyal. 

6. Plantain [Plantago major). This is said to follow in the 
wake of man, and I suppose it does, for he would be a clever 
botanist who could distinguish between the Canadian cr 
Scotch and Formosan plantains. 

7. Rush {JuncacecB). This is used for cleaning tables, buck» 
ets, and benches, as in North Britain and America. 

8. Water-caltrop [Trapa bicornis). It is found in shallow 
water, and is called by the Chinese " dragon's horns." Black- 
ish outside, it certainly resembles the horns of the water-buffalo. 
It is boiled before being eaten. 

9. Fern. There is an almost endless variety, but the brake 
is the most common. There is a beautiful creeper of such 
variegated form that separate sections of the same plant would 
be pronounced by any but skilled botanists to be parts of dif- 
ferent species, 


10. Duckweed. This is the weed which causes the farmti 
so much arduous toil in the rice-fields. 

11. Thorn-apple {Datura Strajnofiium). It has a prickly 
capsule, and grows in great abundance in some localities. 

12. Artemisia is put up over the doors with green branches 
of the banian, and is supposed to confer health and prosperity 
upon the family. 

1 3. Wood-sorrel ( Oxalis Acetosella) has beautiful flowers, and 
trifoliate leaves which resemble the shamrock. 

14. As might be expected in that climate, fungi, mushrooms, 
puffballs, mildew, rust, dry-rot, and moulds are very common. 
The Petiicilliiim glaucum is very destructive of books in hot, 
damp weather, utterly ruining the best bindings in a few days. 

15. Ca'^ms with anomalous ferns is common. 

16. Sea//eed {AlgcB) is found in green, red, and black vari- 
eties in shallow water, and cast up in large quantities on the 
beach by the waves. 

IX. Flowers 

1. QoxiV(Avv\xi& {Convolvulus By ronicB folius). It grows so as 
to entirely cover large shade-trees. After the sun rises this 
morning-glory is truly gorgeous. 

2. Rose. There are the creeping rose, which trails along the 
ground, the white single rose, and Zephyranthes rosea, with its 
purple flowers. They grow wald on the hillsides and in open 

3. Magnolia {Fuscata). Owing to its choice fragrance this 
is the favorite flower in all Formosa, the women especially 
prizing its sweet-scented odor above all others. The Magnolia 
pumila is also found. 

4. Chloranthus {Inconspicuaus). 

5. Gardenia. Cultivated for flavoring tea. 

6. Hibiscus. 

7. Crested cockscomb {Celosia cristata). 


8. Honeysuckle. 

9. Marigold. 

10. White lily. During the months of March, April, and 
May this beautiful flower, so much prized in Western green- 
houses, and called the£aster lily, bedecks a tliousand hillsides. 
I had several planted on good, rich, and prepared soil at 
Tamsui, and ihey grew to the height of four or five feet. 

1 1. Azalea. 

12. Hollyhock. 

13. Vinca rosea. This bears purple-and-white flowers for 
fully one half the year. So tenacious is it of life that it is 
found at the seaside and in all kinds of soil, and the smallest 
fragment of root left in the ground will spring up and grow. 

14. Wild violets. Violets, intermingled with lovely little 
yellow blossoms, beautify all the uplands. 

15. Bluebells {Campanula rotundifolia). 

16. Fardatithtis Chinensis. 

17. Asdepias curassavica. This has a small yellow cup-like 
flower, delicate and charming ; grows wild on little knolls. 

18. Be-te [Tabenicemontana reciirva). This has attractive 

white flowers. 

19. Kui-hoe {Olea fra grans). This flower is highly appreci- 
ated by the Chinese women as an adornment m their headgear. 

20. Balsam. Cultivated in gardens. 

21. Lotus {Nympha;a Lotus). Found in ponds. 

22. Chrysanthemum. Many varieties, carefully cultivated, 
and brought to a high state of perfection. 

23. To-tiau-lien {Bryophyllum calycinum). The white flowers 
of this plant are often seen hanging over walls and rocks. 

24. Un-tsu-chio {Cosfus speciosa). 

25. Kim-chiam (Hetnerocallis disticha). This is also used as 
a vegetable. 

26. Peony {Paonia Moutan) is cultivated. 

27. Sien-tan {Ixora apperis). It has bright scarlet flowers. 
Several varieties were doubtless introduced from China, 


28. Orchids. A common and interesting vanety is the 
lady's tresses {JVeottia spiralis), called by the Chinese "curk- 
screw." It seems to me that this orchid family surpasses all 
others in the island for beauty and fragrance. Orchids arc 
pretty when seen in conservatories, but to be viewed to ad- 
vantage they must be met in their home in the dense forests, 
on the ground or on the branches of trees. The exquisite fra- 
grance of some, and the varied forms and colors of others, re- 
sembling, as they do, spiders, birds, and butterflies, render them 
all objects of indescribable beauty and interest. At times one 
.stands as if on enchanted ground. In those primeval forests 
the traveler becomes suddenly conscious of an influence that 
soothes and charms, making him for a while oblivious to all 
things else. It is tiie matchless fragrance of the orchid that 
there year after year " wastes its sweetness on the desert air." 

The botany of Formosa presents a subject of intensest inter- 
est to the thoughtful student. For the missionary there is a 
tongue in every leaf, a voice in every flower. Do we not, as 
the great natiu-alist, Alfred Russel Wallace, said, " obtain a 
fuller and clearer insight into the course of nature, and in- 
creased confidence that the mighty maze of being we see 
everywhere around us is not without a plan " ? Who can 
tread the ever green carpet of grass ; who can see the many- 
colored flowers and blossoms on plant and vine and shrub ; 
who can look up at the tangled growths of the bamboo, the 
palm, the elegant tree-fern, or the stately pride of the silent 
forests, and not be struck by the harmony between God's 
work and Word ? Understanding something of the flora of 
Formosa, what mi.ssionary would not be a better man, the 
bearer of a richer evangel? What convert would not be a 
more enduring Christian? With reverent delight and adora- 
tion we exclaim, "O Lord, how manifold are thy works! In 
wisdom hast thou made them all. The earth is full of thy 



Mammalia — Birds — Reptiles — Fishes — Insects — Mollusca 

IT would require a volume rather than a brief chapter to dis- 
cuss in detail the zoology of Formosa. The subject has not 
yet received the attention of naturalists, and no lists or classi- 
fication has been made. There is being m.anifested both in 
the East and in America a desire for information about the 
animal life of the island, and to meet in part the acknowledged 
want I have prepared lists under the various subdivisions of 
mammalia, birds, reptiles, fishes, insects, and mollusca. Those 
interested in the subject will be able to fill up the outline, and 
the general reader may not find this chapter uninstructive 

I. Mammalia 

Mammalia Peculiar to Formosa 

1. Monkey, pouched {Macacus cyclopis). Many of this class 
are found. We fed and cared for half a dozen from babyhood 
upward, and observed how similar they were to the earliest 
fossil monkeys. 

2. Tree-civet {Jlelkiis subaurantiacd). 

3. Wild boar (Sus taivanus). 

4. Flying-squirrel {Sciuropterus kaleensis). 

5. White-breasted flying- squirrel i^Pteromys pecioralis). 

6. Red flying-squirrel [Pieromys grandis). 



7. Field-rat [Afus losea). 

8. Country rat [Mus canna). 

9. A smaller rat {Mus Koxinga). 

10. Fruit-bat {Pteropns Formosus). 

11. Blind mole [Talpa insularis). 

12. Mountain-goat {Nemorhadus Swinhoit). 

13. Deer [Cenms Swinhoii). 

14. Spotted deer {PseiidaKis). 

Mammalia not Peculiar to Formosa, but Found There 

1. Squirrel [Sciurus). 

2. Squirrel [Sciurus castaneorentris). 

3. Indian rat {Mas Indicus). 

4. Rat [Mus bandicota). 

5. Gem-faced civet {Pegiima iarvata). 

6. Spotted civet {Viverticula Malaccensis). All these civets 
are wild, ferocious, and untamable. 

7. Chinese tiger-cat {Felts Chinensis). 

8. Marten {Martes flavigula). 
g. Musk-rat {Sorex murinus). 

10. Large-eared bat {Nyciinornus cestonii). 

11. Black-and-orange bat {Vespertilio Formosus). 

12. Leopard [Felis pardus). 

13. Bear ( Ursiis Malayanus). We had one to keep company 
with the monkeys. It was amusing to see them tease and tor- 
liient poor Bruin until he was enraged. Then he would stamp 
with his feet. But when he was pleased he would put his head 
between his fore legs and turn a series of somersaults, like a 
ball rolling round and round. 

14. Hare [Ltipus Sinensis). 

15. Scaly ant-eater {Manis longicatida). It abounds in the 
mountains, is covered with scales, and is toothless. It burrows in 
the ground, and, as its name suggests, feeds mainly on ants, with 


which the island is infested. It has power to raise its scales, 
which are hard and horny, and after disturbing the ants' nest 
it allows the inmates to cover its entire body. Then it either 
crushes them between its close-pressed scales, or, plunging into 
a pool, releases them on the water. In either case it secures 
its prey. The Chinese, referring to a man who would feign 
weakness in order to accomplish mischief, have tliis saying: 
" The manis feigns death to entrap ants." They have also a 
superstition which leads them to pluck the seventh scale from 
the end of the tail of this animal, and to hang it as a sort of 
charm around the necks of children. 

1 6. Wildcat [Felis viverrina). 

17. Otter [Lutra vulgaris). 

Domestic Animals 

1. Black goat. Smaller than the brown goat of Western 

2. Dog. This animal is wolfish in appearance and habit. 

3. Cat. Similar in appearance and nature to the Western 

4. Horse. There are only a few horses in the island, and 
the few that are there have been brought from the mainland 
of China. They are small and used only for riding. 

5. Water-buffalo and ox. There seems to be a misconcep- 
tion regarding these two animals. Wallace writes of Bos Chi- 
nensis, the South China wild cow, as being the same in form ; 
Wright refers to, the wild Formosan cow ; and Blyth says it is 
a cross between the zebu and the European bos. I never saw 
and never heard of such an animal in the island. Under the 
IviVCiWy Bovidce there is first the ox {Bos taunts), descended from 
the Bosprimigenius, the origin of all domestic cattle. The For- 
mosan cattle are smaller, of Jersey breed, and are not milked, 
so that there is no butter, milk, or cheese made in North 











Formosa. Then there is the now ahnost extinct bison, the ^^i- 
Americanns. The so-called buffalo-robe is really a bison-robe. 
The bison family is not found in Formosa. The third branch 
of this family is the buffalo {Bubulus buffalus), which is dis- 
tinctly Oriental, takes the place of the horse in Formosa, and 
is by far the most valuable animal reared there. It is called 
water-buffalo because pools of water where it may wallow are 
necessary to its existence. (See chapter on Rice-farming.) 

II. Birds 

Land Birds 

Formosa may not have as many or as beautiful birds as some 
other tropical countries, but the island is not without its song- 
sters, and has several species that are not found elsewhere. 

Birds Peculiar to For7nosa 

1. Thrushes [Ttirdidce). 

2. Warblers {SylviidcE). Three species. 

3. Orioles {Oriolidca). One species. 

4. Crows [ConndcB). One species. 

5. Babblers [Timaliidce). Eight species. 

6. Pheasants [Phasiatiida). Two species. 

7. Partridges [TctraonidcE). Three species. 

8. Pigeons. Three species. Early in the morning the bam 
boo-groves resound with the cooing of these beautiful birds. 

9. Woodpeckers {Picidcc). One species. 

10. Flycatchers {Muscicapidce). One species. 

11. Shrikes {Campephagidce). One species. 

12. Tits (ParidcE). Two species. 

13. Weaver-finches {Ploceidce). One species. 

14. Goat-suckers {Caprimulgidce). One species. 

15. Owls {Strigidcc). Two species. 


1 6. Jays {CorvidcB). Two species. 

17. Skylarks {Alaudid<z). Two species. This is the sweetest 
singer in Formosa. Many a time, traveling over the plateau, 
where the dew-gemmed tea-plantations and tall fir-trees sparkle 
in the morning sun, have I been charmed by the cheery notes 
of the skylark poured out now almost within reach, and now 
falling faintly from the deep empyrean. 

Birds not Peculiar to Formosa 

1. Kingfisher {Halcyon coromandd). 

2. Hawk-eagle [Spizaetus Nipalf Js). 

3. Kite [Milvus ictinus). 

4. Swallow [Hirundo rustled). 

5. Magpie (Pica caudatd). 

6. Quail [Coturfiix Dussumleri). 

7. Owl [Bulaca Newarensls). 

8. Cormorant ( Glaculus carbd). 

9. Sandpiper [Totanus hypoleucus). 
lo. '^ni^Q {Scolopax gallinagd). 

Sea Birds 

1. Common gull {Larus canus). 

2. Black gull {Larus marinus). 

3. Tern {Sterna hirundo). 

4. Wild duck {Anas boseas). 

5. Teal [Querquedula creeca). 

Domestic Birds 
There are no turkeys on the island, but the universal custom 
is to castrate male chickens of the hen family, and so there is 
reared a capon which in flavor and size is not much inferior to 
the gobbler. This fowl walks about the door quiet and tame, 
and sometimes attains a weight of fifteen pounds. The goose, 
common duck, and large Muscovite duck are common domes- 
tic fowl. 


III. Reptiles 

1. One day, on returning from the country, and going up the 
steps to the door of our house in Timsiu, I found a large ser- 
pent, eight feet in length, lying across the threshold. With 
help I succeeded in despatching hjm. The following day, 
when about to leave my sthdy-room, I was confronted by its 
mate, of equal size and very fi^ce-looking. A loud call 
brought two or three students, and we ended that one's life. 
They belonged to the species Ityas mucosus. 

2. Once, as I entered a small shed like a hen-coop, a snake 
which resembled the hoop-snake sprang from the roof and fell 
coiled up in front of me. Its head was up in a moment, and 
ready to spring. I jumped backward, and with the assistance 
of others I succeeded in securing this rare specimen for my 

3. A few years ago we had a pigeon-cage, made of bamboo 
wrought into the requisite shape. One night the poor birds 
were fljnng about, greatly frightened. Upon investigation we 
found a^arge snake of the python family bent over with its 
head moving at the pigeon-hole. One vigorous blow brought 
it down. When fully stretched out it was more than eight feet 
in length. 

4. At Tamsui, near the mission bungalow, I erected a second 
story above an old kitchen for a small study-room. One 
night, about eleven o'clock, I heard a noise among papers 
which were lying over a hole in the floor. Supposing that the 
noise was produced by rats, I called to those below. Presently 
Koa Kau ran up, looked into the room, then darted downstairs 
again, and in a twinkling pinned the exposed part of a mons- 
trous serpent to the wall below. By this time fully three feet 
of the body was through the hole into the room above. It was 


exceedingly violent, but I soon thmst its head through with a 
long Chinese spear. It measured nine English feet. Its tri- 
angular head was protected by nine plates, the body highly 
marked, the fangs not very pointed, and the teeth small and 
inclined backward. The thought of that midnight companion 
was by no means pleasant. It was similar to the hamadryad 
type. The Chinese were greatly alarmed and would not rest 
until it was buried out of sight. 

5. Walking across the harbor, making the ascent to the pla- 
teau, one day, my eye suddenly caught sight of something green 
in the midst of the bushes at a turn in the path. At the same 
instant it sprang to strike my hand; missing its aim, it 
grabbed the end of my sleeve in its teeth. It proved to be a 
green snake of ih^ Dryophis fulgida %y>^c\qs, eighteen inches in 
length, with flat, triangular head. It is now preserved in alco- 
hol in my museum at Tamsui. The Chinese have a great hor- 
ror of this species. 

6. When among tall grasses and rocks, ascending the high 
mountain-ranges, I was 'more than once struck at by the 
deadly cobra-de-capello. Owing to the tall grass on each 
side I did not observe him, but fortunately he missed his aim. 
One successful charge would never need to be repeated. 

7. I procured one of the species Naja tripudians, and found 
that keeping his head and neck in spirits of ammonia only 
made him writhe in agony and lash his tail with fury. He 
"Was four feet six inches in length. 


1. Green turtle {Chelonia viridis). They are found in large 
numbers along the shore of eastern Formosa, and are from 
three to five feet in length. They vary in weight from two 
hundred to four hundred pounds. Going up from the water 
at night, they dig holes in the sand on the beach with their 
flappers, lay their eggs, cover them over, then with head erect 


Start back for their home in the sea. Hundreds never reach 
their destination. The savages are on the beach, with fires 
kindled, awaiting their game. The turtles fight bravely, but 
being clumsy they are soon turned on their backs, in which 
position they are helpless. 

2. Hawk's-bill turtle [Chelonia imbricata). The mouth is 
similar to that of the hawk ; hence the name. It is the one 
from which so many useful and ornamental articles are made. 

3. Mud-turtle. These may be found in many of the fresh- 
water streams. 

IV. Fishes 

Fish abound both in the waters around the shore and in the 
rivers and streams, and every conceivable method is used in 
fishing. Among the varieties may be mentioned : 

1. Flounder {Platessa fiesus). 

2. Mullet {Mullus barbatus). 

3. Mackerel [Scomber). ■ 

4. Shad {Clupea alosd). 

5. Blackfish. 

6. 'SaddV^Carchariida). The peculiar hammerhead [Zygcena 
malleus) is eaten by the poorer classes. The blue shark [Car- 
charias glaucus), from five to twelve feet in length, is caught 
on the west coast, a day's journey south from Tamsui. The 
flesh is eaten, though not relished. Oil is made out of the liver. 
The fins, however, are counted a choice delicacy in all parts 
of China. 

7. Flying-fish {Exocoetus volitans). 

8. Trout [Salmo fario). 

9. Sunfish. 

10. Remora. An extraordinary creature with a suctorial 
disk with which it attaches itself to other animals and sucks 
their blood. A shark was once discovered in the mouth of the 
Tamsui River, floundering about helplessly. We surrounded 


and secured him, and found a remora about six inches long in 
his ear. This httle creature had power to make the monster 
of the sea utterly stupid. 

11. Globe-fish {Diodon hystrix). 

12. Diodon [Osiracion cornutus). 

13. Porpoise [Fhoccena communis). 

14. Eel. 

15. Thornback {Rija clavatd). 

16. Sole {Solea vulgaris). This is the most palatable of all 
the finny tribes in Formosan waters, and is most prized by 
Chinese as well as Europeans. 

1 7. Periophthalmus. It is found in mud or muddy water, as 
if depending on two leg-like fins for locomotion. With these 
it jumps and bounds with great agility. They are the keenest- 
eyed creatures I have ever seen. They are never caught nap- 
ping. The slightest movement is observed, and hke a flash 
they disappear into the mud. It was years before I succeeded 
in securing a specimen. 

V. Insects 

I. Cicada. If the sacred beetle engaged the attention of 
the ancient Egyptians, the cicada won the affections of the 
Grecians. Homer and Hesiod sang of the hght, bloodless, and 
harmless cicada. In modern times, Byron, making use of 
the Italian name, spoke of the "shrill cicalas." The males 
have an apparatus for the production of musical sounds, while 
the females are dumb and silent. There are three important 
species in Formosa ; one reddish, another green, and a third 
large and black. The last, the Fidicina altrata, is most fre- 
quently seen. The female deposits her eggs on the branch of 
a tree. In due time Httle grubs are hatched and creep down 
the bark and into the earth, where they feed on the juices of 
roots and bulbs. In a couple of months, as large, living 


beetles, they come up agahi, earth-stained, out of the ground, 
and climb up the stem of a tree, very oiteu a banian. Hav- 
ing selected the sunny side, the beetle crawls on a fresh green 
leaf, forces its claws through' it, and there remains with its back 
to the sun. The heat of the sun cracks its shell between the 
shoulders ; a whitish-looking, soft-winged creature comes out, 
leaves its coffin, and flies away, singing " Katy did" and 
" Katy didn't." Its after-Ufe continues for a couple of weeks, 
and then, dizzy-Hke, it drops, turns over, and life is extinct. 
Its little course is soon run. 

2. The praying mantis. What a misnomer! The "pray- 
ing " is really waiting in that attitude in which he can seize the 
prey which seldom escapes his vigilant glance. This insect is 
savage and cannibalistic in habits. A large female came near 
my study-room one day. She was captured and put into a 
paper box with a perforated top. I watched her movements 
closely and soon had the rare privilege of seeing her deposit 
one hundred eggs in a thick, spongy bag which she produced 
and affixed to the side of the box. This spongy bag hardened, 
and in a fortnight eight dozen small cannibals came forth, and 
were soon devouring one another without mercy. These 
emptied bags are seen on thousands of branches, but I never 
met a native who knew what they were. 

3. Cockroach {Blatta orientalis). In summer this cockroach 
is almost as common as the house-fly. It is found among 
dishes, in bureaus, and on sideboards. One night at eleven 
o'clock, in my small upper room, I observed a cockroach 
moving slowly up the wall. Suddenly a gecko (chickchack) 
appeared within three feet right above. With little jumps and 
sudden movements he was soon close to the cockroach — ^so 
close, indeed, that he grasped the left wing in his mouth. 
Then he began to pull, shake his head, and show other signs 
of pleasure. Slowly the pair were moving upward, when a 
small lizard appeared, but was warned by very significant tail 


movements to stand off. Soon the cockroach fell from his 
enemy's grasp and tumbled to the floor. He was too miwieldy 
for that active little chickchack. 

4. Beetle. There are several species. Chinese boys make 
a very ingenious and extraordinary-looking toy out of a variety 
golden in color. The materials used in its construction are a 
string about three feet in length, a tube four inches long, and 
a stick slightly larger than an ordinary lead-pencil. One end 
of the cord is put through the tube, and secured thpre by a 
little key or fastener, so as to rotate without twisting. The 
other end is attached to the center of the stick, to each end 
of which there is tied a golden beetle. The boy, now hold- 
ing the tube in his hand at arm's-length, gives the beetles an 
opportunity of exercising their wings. Faster and faster they 
go on their miniature merry-go-round, until they appear like a 
yellow circle. Sometimes the effect is enhanced by fastening 
little bits of bright-colored delf at intervals on the stick. I have 
seen a foreigner give a Chinese boy a dollar for an exhibition 
of this plaything. 

5. Grasshopper [Acrida viridissimd). There are numerous 
varieties. One large green kind, which might indeed be called 
a locust, lays its eggs on paths. The female makes a hole the 
size of a lead-pencil, and putting her body down into it deposits 
a heap of eggs, which are hatched by the heat of the sun. 

6. Water-bug [Nepidce). 

7. Water-boatmen [Noionectidce). 

8. Bedbug [Acafithia lectularid). 

9. Mole-cricket {Gryllotalpa vulgaris). 

10. Field-cricket {Gryllus campestris). 

n. Dragon-flies {Libellulidcz). This is a large family. One 
member has a red body and is of surpassing beauty. 

12. White ants {Termes). They are not ants, but Termis 
bellkosi, and belong to the order Neuroptera, while the true 
ants belong to Hymenoptera. They work in the dark, and if 


moving from place to place on the. surf ace of an object they 
invariably construct a tunnel or incasement of earth and dust, 
with a passage somewhat larger than a large quill, and through 
this they pass and repass, carrying on their ■w'ork of destruc- 
tion. They are extremely destructive of all kinds of wood- 
work. They penetrate and riddle the large beams of a house 
from end to end in a few months, leaving nothing but a thin 
shell on the outside and the hard heart within. When they 
have done their work in the sill of a house there remains only 
a crust, sometimes no thicker than paper. • They work up 
through board floors, pierce the bottoms of trunks, puncture 
fumitvu-e of every description, leaving the outside whole and 
complete, but so honeycombed within as to be easily crushed 
in the hand. Once we left a chest filled with clothes in our 
house at Tamsui while we were absent for two months. When 
we returned we found pecks of white ants in it, the clothes in 
shreds, and the boards of the chest so eaten away that it could 
not resist the slightest pressure. 

13. Glow-worm {Lampyris noctilucd). 

14. Death-watch {Anobium striatum). This insect bores 
into furniture and makes a ticking noise. 

15. Stag-beetle {Lucanus). 

16. Sacred beetle of Egypt {Scarabczus sacer). This inter- 
esting creature may be seen almost any day along the path- 
ways in the college grounds. It is small, but of remark- 
able strength. The female deposits her larvae in the interior 
of a ball about the size of a plum, made out of the excreta of 
some herbivorous animal such as the ox. When this ball is "pre- 
pared it is transported to a hole already excavated, into which 
it is rolled, and where the eggs are hatched by the sun's heat. 
The living creature eats its way out of the ball and comes out 
the sacred flying-beetle, so famous in Egyptian mythology. 
The transportation of this ball, sometimes over considerable 
distances, is a very interesting sight. All principles of propul- 


sion are employed, but the commonest is for the male to push 
the ball from the rear with his hind legs, while the female goes 
in front to steer its course and assist by pulling. 

17. Golden beetle. 

18. Tiger-beetle {Cidndela campestris). 
ig. Water-beetle {Hydradephaga). 

20. Whirligigs {Gyrini). 

21. Elater or skipjacks {Elateridce). 

22. True ants. Of these there are several species. One 
kind makes large nests, like those of wasps, in a tree ; another 
raises hillocks on the ground ; but the most provoking of all is 
a tiny brown species. Unless the legs of a dining-table are 
standing in bowls of water it is impossible to keep the food 
from being literally covered by the ants. Everywhere, at 
every corner and every turn, they can be seen during the 
summer months, moving in long lines. 

23. Wasps [Vespa). 

24. Bees [Apis). Hives are kept, but bees are often found 
in nests in the woods. 

25. House-fly [Musca domesticd). 

26. Mosquito {Culex pipiens). The female alone stings, but 
so efficiently does she perform this service that there is not a 
bed in the emperor's palace or the beggar's hut that is not fur- 
nished with a mosquito-curtain to protect the sleepers. 

27. Hawk-moth (Acherontia atropos). 

28. Clothes-moth {Tinea rusticdla). So destructive is this 
insect that a second suit of clothes is an unprofitable care. 

29. Atlas-moth [Atlacus atlas). I procured one which 
measured from tip to tip of its wings nine and three quarter 
inches, and of exquisite beauty. 

30. Moon-moth [Atlacus luna). 

31. Sphinx. 

32. Walking-sticks [Bacillus natalis). 

33. Incased insects [Fsychidce). 


34. Fleas. As great a pest as anywhere else on earth. 

35. Lice. 

36. Butterflies. 

(i) Swallowtailed {Papilio mcuhaon). Numerous and beau- 

(2) Peacock butterfly {Papilio io). 

(3) Leaf -butterfly [Kallima paralekta). When this beautiful 
specimen is on the limb of a tree one would require the eye of 
a naturalist to distinguish it from a dead leaf. .The resem- 
blance is almost perfect, alike to form, color, and position. 

37. Myriapod [Julus terrestris). 

38. Centiped {Scolopendra). Next to venomous serpents 
most dreaded by the natives. 

39. Spider [Araneina). 

40. Earthworms. 

VL Mollusca 

To secure the glassy, shiny appearance of shells we place 
them when alive in the ground. In a few days they are re- 
moved and thoroughly washed. Those found at the sea-shore 
dead are never perfect, for the water and sand grind-and wear 
off the external coat. These animals are found in sand and 
mud, on timber, and resting on seaweed as they sail the sea. 

1. Fountain-shell [Strombus). 

2. The buckie of Scotland [Fusus or Cehrysodomus aniiquus). 
This is a shell in which the sound of the sea is always heard. 

3. Whelk {Buccinum utidatum). This has a rasp-pointed 
tongue, with which it bores the shells of other moUusks when 
in search of a delicious breakfast. 

4.' Gone [Conus imperialts). 

5. Cone {Conus aulicus). 

6. Money-cowry {Cyprcsa monetd). 

7. Tiger-cowry {Cyprcea tigris). 

8. Snail {Helix aspersa). 


9. Chiton {Magnijicus). 

10. Oysters [Osircidce). 

11. Pecten. 

1 2. Mussel [Myiilus cdulis). 

13. Unio Uttoralis. 

14. Razor-fish (^S'lS'/if/z vagina). 

15. Limpet [Patella vulgaia). 

16. Boring-shell [P/iolas dacfylus). 

1 1- Sea-urchin (Echinus esculentus). On the sea-coast of 
Formosa pickled sea-urchins are used as a condiment with rice. 

18. Starfish [Asterias riibens). 

19. Sea-anemone, 

20. Hermit-crab {Pagurus bernkardus). This is one of the 
most interesting of all the Hving mollusks on the sea-shore. 
The fore parts are furnished with claws and feelers and are 
partially protected, but the hinder parts are soft, sensitive, 
easily injured, and entirely defenseless. The hermit-crab has 
no home, but is a semi-parasite, a kind of sea " tramp." It 
depends on finding a home in the shell of some dead whelk 
or other mollusk. I have often watched it on its search for a 
suitable shell. One would be too large, another too small, a 
third might be already inhabited, in which case a fight for 
possession sometimes ensued. When a satisfactory one was 
found and proved to be untenanted, the crab would whisk its 
unprotected parts into it and march off, its house on its back, 
as lordly as if it had a legal right to undisturbed possession. 

21. King-crab [Li/nulus gigas). This resembles the ancient 
trilobite. It is found in the shallow water on the land side of 
Kelung harbor. 

22. "Holy-water pot " [Tndacria squamosa). This receives 
its name because it is often used to hold the consecrated water 
in Roman Catholic cathedrals in France and Italy. There is 
an enormous one in a cathedral in Paris. In the Malacca 
Straits it grows to a large size, and has been found to weigh 
several hundred pounds. Large ones are brought in junks as 


ballast from the China coast to Formosa, but smaller ones are 
found around the island. The preparing of them has become 
quite an industry, especially in the city of Tek-chham. The 
Chinese use a toothless hand-saw, sand, and water, as granite-' 
cutters do in sawing granite. The pieces of this shell which 
are sawn off resemble marble. They are cut as desired, three 
or four inches thick, ground on sandstone, and then converted 
into bracelets, armlets, and other ornaments which are worn by 
the savages, who value them very highly, and give in exchange 
rattan, camphor, dye-root, and pith. 

23. Periwinkle. 

24. Triton (^Triton variegatuni). 

25. Trumpet-shell. 

26. Conch-shell. 

27. Cockle (CardiidcB edule). 

28. Harp I^Harpa ventricosa). 

29. Thorny woodcock [Murex tenuispinus). 

30. Trochus ( Trochus Niloftcus). 

31. Scallop {Pecien maximus). 

32. Haliotis tuberculata. 

33. Sea-acorn shells {Balanas sukatus). 

34. Lobster {Homarus vulgaris). Large ; bluish green when 
alive ; a reddish-brown color when boiled. 

35. Shrimp {Palcemon vulgaris). 

36. Pea-crab {^Pinnotheres pisum). 

37. Paper-nautilus (Argonauia argo). It is difficult to con- 
ceive of anything more lovely than this thin, translucent, boat- 
shaped shell, which is propelled by water ejected from its 

38. Octopus {Octopus vulgaris). 

39. Sepiida {Sepia officinalis). " Cuttlebone," which is placed 
in the cages for canary-birds, is the calcareous internal shell 
of this animal. 

40. Pearly nautilus {Nautilus pampiliusy. Its mouth is like 
a parrot's beak, tl\5 utside white, with brown stripes. 



Two classes — The dominant race — Ethnological table — ^The aborigines 
Malayan — Traditions — Foreign opinion — Migration — Habits and 
easterns — Features — Linguistic differences 

THE inhabitants of North Formosa may be classified as be- 
longing to either one of two great races ; the aborigines, 
both civilized and savage, are Malayan, the Chinese are Mon- 
goHan. To be sure, there are "foreigners" from Europe and 
America ; but their number is so small, and the part they play 
in the hfe of the island so inconsiderable, that they may be 
excluded from our present reckoning. The tv/o great classes 
have not to any extent mingled, and so there is no mixed race 
on the island. The purpose of this chapter is not an exhaustive 
study, but rather to set forth in outline the ethnology of North 
Formosa, and to indicate the argument in support of the 
opening statement classifying the people as either Malayan or 

The dominant race, first in numbers, intelligence, and influ- 
ence, is the Chinese. They do not present any problem of 
difficulty to the ethnologist, as their origin and racial relations 
are easily traced. They are immigrants, or the children of those 
who in earlier years crossed the Formosa Channel from the 
thickly populated provinces of the mainland. They brought 
with them their habits of life and their household gods. They 
found the island wooded down to the water's edge, and the 



home of tribes of wild, roaming savages, whose appearance was 
strange to them, and whose speech was rude and barbarous. 
Their entrance was disputed at every point, but their greater 
numbers and superior skill prevailed. The savages were 
driven back out of some of the richest plains ; rire-farms and 
tea-plantations took the place of forest tangh and wild plateau ; 
the rude hamlets of another race vanished ; towns and cities 
with their unmistakable marks of the " Middle Kingdom " took 
their place ; and the Chinese became a superior power in For- 
mosa. They are in the main industrious and aggressive, show- 
ing all the characteristics of their race, and retaining their 
ancestral modes of life and worship. The large majority have 
emigrated from the Fu-kien province, and speak what is called 
the Amoy dialect. These are called Hok-los. A few are the 
descendants of a tribe who m.oved from the north of China and 
settled in parts of the Canton province, whence they afterward 
crossed to Formosa. These are called Hak-kas (" strangers "), 
with distinct forms of life and language. 

The Chinese call all the aborigines of the island barbarians, 
and classify them according as they live in the plains or on the 
mountains, and according as they have resisted or submitted 
to Chinese rule. In a large plain on the east coast are those 
who have acknowledged Chinese authority and adopted their 
mode of worship ; these are called " Pe-po-hoan " (" barbarians 
of the plain "). In a second plain farther down the coast is 
another settlement of aborigines ; these are called " Lam-si- 
hoan " (" barbarians of the south "). Unsubdued mountaineers 
they call " Chhi-hoan " (" raw barbarians "). A few who have 
settled among the Chinese in the west are called " Sek-hoan " 
("ripe barbarians "). These names are all Chinese, and indi- 
cate the relations of the dominant race to the aborigines. Now 
that Japan has possession of the island a new element will be 
introduced. The relations of the Japanese to the present 
inhabitants cannot as yet be set forth, but the indications are 


that they will treat the aborigines with fairness. The following 
table will show the ethnology of the people : 

Mongolian Malayan 

Chinese Aborigines 

r m , .1 .,,.1 

Hok-los Hak-kas Pe-po-hoan Sek-hoan Lamsi-hoan Chhi-hoan 

The classification of all the aboriginal tribes as Malayan 
may, however, be regarded as an open question, and proof of 
the statement may be demanded. There are several reasons 
which have forced me to the conclusion that they are all descen- 
dants of settlers from the islands around the Malay Archipelago, 
and these I now submit. 

.1. Aboriginal Traditio7i. — I have picked up at first-hand 
from various tribes traditions which support the contention 
that they are of Malayan origin. One is that their forefathers 
came from a southerly direction ; that, being in boats, they were 
wrecked ; that they Uved near the sea on level ground, and after- 
ward, when others came, moved inward even over the moun- 
tain-ranges; that they caught fish and turtle; entrapped the 
wild boar, shot the deer with bow and arrow, were clothed in 
deerskins, reckoned the time by tying knots on the stem of a . 
tali grass, and when their numbers in any one place increased 
to upward of one hundred or two hundred they moved a little 
distance away, cleared the ground, and called themselves the 
"other village," "south village," "new village," or "large 
village." Their houses were made of reeds, rattan, and bam- 
boo. New-comers, bringing knives and similar utensils, pre- 
sented them to the head men, and afterward, when the Chinese 
put in an appearance, they exchanged skins and horns of deer 
for guns, powder, and knives. They remembered the coming 
of the "red-headed kinsmen," who treated them kindly, and 
with whom they had free mercantile intercourse. These the 


Chinese drove out and began to make settlements themselves. 
Hatred sprang up, and head-hunting, which was prosecuted by 
their fathers in their ancestral home, was resorted to. 

There is a second tradition and a memorial custom which 
point to the same conclusion. On the Ki-lai plain, on the east 
coast, where the Lam-si-hoan are settled, two canoes are kept 
to commemorate the coming of their fathers to the island. As 
one shows marks of decay it is renewed or replaced. They are 
kept under a thatched cover in the open plain not far from the 
sea. Once a year the Lam-si-hoan assemble and carry these 
canoes to the water's edge, when a number of their men enter 
them, paddle out a short distance, and return. Then with re- 
joicings the canoes are restored to shelter. The Lam-si-hoan 
declare that their forefathers came in 'similar canoes from places 
south and east of Formosa, and this custom is intended to pre- 
serve that tradition. 

At Lam-hong-o, a Pe-po-hoan village near So Bay, men of 
eighty years of age told me how in the days of their grand- 
fathers forty or fifty strong fishermen took a dislike to the 
rainy weather in the Kap-tsu-lan plain and longed for their old 
home. They lashed planks together and formed rude boats, 
in which they set out in a southerly direction, bound for their 
fatherland. My informants were of the opinion that their 
ancestral home was one of the Philippine Islands. 

At Sin-sia the villagers assert that their forefathers came, not 
from the islands, but from the mainland of China, and were 
non-Mongolian. It is certain that only one other village in 
the Kap-tsu-lan plain speaks the same dialect as Sin-sia, and 
these two villages recognize each other as kin, and are so 
looked upon by all the rest. It is entirely probable that they 
are descended, as they claim to be, frqm the aboriginal tribes 
still found on the mainland of China. 

2. Consensus of Foreign Opinion. — Travelers see in the various 
tribes of Formosa the features and manners of the inhabitants 


of Luzon, Polynesia, the Malay Peninsula, the islands of Loo- 
choo, Sunda, and Borneo, and of Siam and Yunnan ; and there 
is great unanimity of opinion that the aborigines of Formosa are 
descendants of emigrants from the Malay Peninsula and the 
islands of the China Sea. It is contended by some, however, 
that the aboriginal inhabitants of Formosa were of the negro 
race, and that they were driven back into the mountains by the 
Malayans. I cannot admit the contention, as I have failed to 
find-the slightest trace of the negrito element, nor is the pres- 
ence within the mountains of such a people suspected by any 
known tribe. I have made careful inquiries among the moun- 
tain tribes near Ta-kow in the far south, among the tribes at 
Po-sia Lake in the center, and among more than a dozen tribes 
in the north, as well as among the Pe-po-hoan and Sek-hoan, and 
everywhere I received the same reply. They were all positive 
that there were no woolly-headed races within the mountains 
or anywhere else in the island. Superficial observers frequently 
make strong assertions. Indeed, I was told a few years ago 
that a white tribe, finely developed and with grayish eyes, was 
fo be found among the mountains. So persistent was the con- 
tention that I resolved to put it to the proof. Making my way 
intc the place where they were said to dwell, instead of the 
descendants of the Dutch, I found short-set, brown-featured, 
black, lank-haired Malayans. 

3. Natural Migration. — The ocean current that sweeps be- 
tween Sunda, Java, and Sumatra on the one side and Borneo 
on the other runs north through the China Sea and between 
Formosa and the mainland. Another current sweeps between 
Borneo and Celebes, through the Celebes Sea, and touches 
the north Pacific current, which runs as a black stream (Kuro 
Siwa) across to the eastern side of Formosa. This ocean cur- 
rent would very easily and naturally carry mercantile boats 
and fishermen in their smacks from the islands in the Malay 
Archipelago to the shores of Formosa. Indeed, examples of 


such migration have taken place within my own time. Some 
years after my arrival in Formosa strange-looking outriggers 
sailed into the harbor of Kelung. In them were a number of 
famished boatmen with tattoo marks from head to foot. They 
were kindly treated, and in the course of time were taken to 
Hong Kong, and thence conveyed to their home on the Pelew 
Islands. Not infrequently boat-loads from the Loo-choo 
Islands are wrecked on the shore of Formosa. 

4. Habits and Customs. — The habits and customs of the 
aborigines of Formosa will be referred to at Jength in subse- 
quent chapters. Suffice it to say here that in nearly every 
point they bear a marked resemblance to the habits and cus- 
toms of the aborigines of Borneo. The tattoo marks follow the 
same well-estabhshed pattern. Their dress and ornaments are 
similar, and their houses suggest a common architecture. Like 
Malay Islanders, they worship their ancestors, and within the 
mountains they have the unmistakable head-hunting proclivities 
of the Dyaks of Borneo. 

5. Physical Features. — The Chinese in Formosa are round- 
headed, the aborigines medium between long and broad. 
The sutures or lines where the bones of the skull are united, I 
find in the skulls of the young to be only slightly traced ; the 
skull has the appearance of a round ball or bone. This is char- 
acteristic of the islanders belonging to the lower races. So, 
too, prognathism or projection of the jaws — " maxillary angle," 
" facial angle " — points to kinship with the islanders of the 
Malay type. The hair is round, thus showing that in its pos- 
sessor there is no trace of the woolly-headed race. Its color is 
black, identical with the Malayan. The eyes are Malayan in 
color, and the nose conforms to the same type. 

It may be objected that the various aboriginal tribes cannot 
have had a common origin inasmuch as they now speak differ- 
ent dialects. Linguistic differences, however, are not conclu- 
sive, Scandinavians in Caithness, Finland, Orkney, and 


Iceland speak dialects or languages quite different from their 
kinsmen in Norway and Sweden, different circumstances ex- 
plain the difference. Similar changes have taken place among 
the Chinese in Formosa. A mainland man can be told at 
once from his Formosan cousin, and the " Kap-tsu-lan twang " 
marks the Chinese in that plain. In hke manner crews and 
passengers from the Malay Islands, shipwrecked at intervals on 
the coast of Formosa, would be absorbed by the larger com- 
munity already settled there, and would acquire the dominant 
dialect ; and where tribes have been isolated, with no means 
of intercommunication, and with tribal enmities keeping them 
separate, modifications and changes in their language are to 
be expected. Such changes have taken place in the Highland 
settlements in Canada, where the grandchildren of the pioneers 
are entirely ignorant of the much-loved Gaelic of their fore- 
fathers. An interesting instance came under my notice in one 
of the Kap-tsu-lan villages where we have a church. There is 
there a man who was shipwrecked on that coast. Years before, 
he, with others, started in a boat from the Philippine Islands. 
They passed Bashee and were driven out of their course and 
upon the shore of Formosa, and he alone survived to tell the 
tale. He was able, however, to understand a few words of the 
dialect of the aborigines among whom he landed. He soon 
learned the Pe-po-hoan dialect, and was subsequently married 
to a Pe-po-hoan wife, and became, to all intents and purposes, 

The foregoing seems to me a cumulative argument, irresis- 
tible and conclusive, that numerous adventurers, fishermen, and 
traders from the islands south and east of the China Sea, and 
others from the north and east of Formosa, with perhaps a few 
from the mainland, entered the island at intervals, and formed 
what is now called the aboriginal race, and that that race is 





Chinese in Formosa— The Hok-los— The Hak-kas— The language— The 

" barWrians " 

THERE are nearly three million Chinese on the island. Of 
these about one million are in the four districts served by 
the Mission of the Presbyterian Church in Canada. They are 
divided into two classes, the Hok-los and the Hak-kas. The 
Hok-los comprise seven eighths of the Chinese population in 
North Formosa. They are emigrants, or the children of emi- 
grants, from the Fu-kien province, opposite the island. After 
Koxinga, the Chinese pirate, drove the Dutch out of Formosa, 
that rich and beautiful island was opened up for Chinese emi- 
gration, and became an outlet for the overcrowded province of 
Fu-kien. They found it inhabited by aboriginal tribes who, 
though they were friendly to the Dutch, resisted the aggressive- 
ness of the Chinese. Gradually the Chinese crowded these 
aborigines back. into the mountains, and they themselves now 
occupy the large and fertile plains on the north and west. Be- 
sides those who have made their home on the island, between ten 
and twenty thousand come over every year from Amoy to en- 
gage in the tea industry. Of these a percentage remain. The 
Chinese in Formosa have all the marks of their countrymen in 
Fu-kien, except that emigration has done its work in changing 
somewhat their customs and point of view. They speak the 
Amoy dialect. The women bind their feet and wear the same 
dress as those in Amoy. 



The Hak-kas (" strangers ") are supposed to be descendants 
of a tribe that emigrated from North China into the Fu-kien 
province and subsequently into Canton. There are about one 
hundred thousand of them in North Formosa. They are brave 
and vigorous, and have fought their way both on the mainland 
and in Formosa. The women do not bind their feet, and as a 
result are ^stronger and more robust than their Hok-lo sisters. 
They help their husbands on the farm and in all outside work, 
and are remarkably industrious. In consequence of this the 
Hak-kas will thrive and become wealthy where the Hok-los 
would fail and the aborigines would starve. They are found 
mainly in towns and hamlets in the Sin-tiak and Biau-lek 
districts, and are the pioneers in the border-land between the 
Chinese and the savages. They speak a dialect of the Can- 
tonese. The younger generation learn the Hok-lo dialect, and 
in time the Hak-kas may become extinct. 

It should be remembered that the written language in For- 
mosa, as throughout the Chinese empire, is everywhere the 
same, although the spoken language is so varied. It is not 
easy for a Westerner to understand this. The written characters 
remain fixed and represent the same ideas to all the Chinese, 
but the names of these characters are different in the different 
provinces of China. Not only so, but in Formosa there are 
really two languages to be learned, the pronunciation of the 
characters by the Hterary class being entirely distinct from 
the colloquial. For instance, the character representing 
" man " is pronounced " jin " by the literary class and " lang " 
by the masses. There are no declensions or conjugations in 
Chinese, their place being taken by the "tones," of which 
there are eight in the Formosan vernacular. A word that to 
an EngUsh ear has but one sound may mean any one of eight 
things according as it is spoken in an abrupt, high, low, or 
any other of the eight " tones." Each one of these " tones " 
is represented by a written character ; hence there are upward 


of sixty thousand written characters in the language. There 
are numerous other variations and complications which make 
the learning of the Chinese language no simple task. A sharp 
ear, a ready tongue, and a strong imitative faculty are requisite 
for proficiency in public speech. Many foreigners never be- 
come proficient in speaking the language, but may be none the 
less" useful in other departments of service. 

The Chinese in Formosa have great contempt for the 
aborigines, and treat them very much as the Americans have 
treated the Indian tribes, bartering with them, cheating them, 
and crowding them back into their mountain strongholds. The 
aborigines in the plains, whom they call " Pe-po-hoan," the 
Chinese regard with more favor than they do the savages, 
but they are gradually dispossessing them and forcing them 
back into territory to be reclaimed from the mountain tribes. 



Form of government — The cue — Formosa a province — Official corruption 
— Injustice in the yamen — " Mandarin eats cash " — Forms of punish- 
ment — Money all-powerful — " Ridding up " — Punishment by proxy 
— Oppression of Christians 

THE government of China is patriarchal. The emperor 
is in theory the father of two hundred and fifty million 
Chinese. The present emperor, Kong-su, is ninth in the line 
of the Tartar dynasty, which succeeded the Ming dynasty in 
1 644. The first emperor of the Tartar dynasty was Sun-ti, who 
belonged to Manchuria. One of his " reforms " was the intro- 
duction of the cue. All Chinese men were compelled to shave 
the forehead and dress the hair in a long braid, according to 
the Manchurian custom. The cue was made the badge of 
fealty to the emperor, and not to wear it is to endanger one's 
head. Westerners are slow to learn that the cue has no reli- 
gious or superstitious significance, but is purely poHtical. It is 
the " old flag " of the Chinese empire, the mark of loyalty to 
the reigning dynasty. The people have become accustomed 
to it, and what was once a disgrace is now regarded with pride. 
A Chinese without a cue is a traitor and a rebel. When this 
fact comes to be known by self-respecting people in the West 
the emblem of Chinese loyalty will cease to be regarded with 
ridicule, and the offensive " pigtail " will be blotted out of 
English hterature. 



Theoretically the emperor rules China, but practically the 
affairs of the empire are managed by six boards, which appoint 
all the higher officials in the various provinces. 

After Koxinga was dethroned, in 1683, Formosa became a 
dependency of the Fu-kien province. In 1887 it was raised to 
the rank of a province of the empire, and a governor was ap- 
pointed by the imperial authorities at Peking, as in the other 
provinces. Under the governor were four olficials, who had 
rule over the four districts into which North Formosa was 
divided. Under these magistrates others of lower grade, 
having jurisdiction over smaller sections, were appointed, and 
subordinate to these again were local officials and head men, 
whose authority was correspondingly reduced. All these 
superior officials were from the mainland, but the head men 
usually belonged to North Formosa. All these magistrates 
have judicial as well as governing powers. The administration 
of justice is in the hands of the governor and his underlings. 
Each subordinate official holds his office at the will of the 
next above him. The income attached to any of the offices is 
not sufficient to support the retinue which must be maintained. 
As a result there is universal official corruption. From the 
highest to the lowest, every Chinese official in Formosa has an 
"itching palm," and the exercise of official functions is always 
corrupted by money bribes. The mandarin supplements his 
income by "squeezing" his attendants and every man who 
comes within his grasp. His attendants have the privilege of 
recouping themselves by " squeezing " all who through them 
seek favors from the mandarin. In the matter of bribing and 
boodling the Chinese official in Formosa could give points to 
the most accomplished office-seekers and money-grabbers in 
Washington or Ottawa. 

The chief opportunity for corruption is afforded in connec- 
tion with the administration of justice. The yamen or court- 
house is the scene of unmitigated lying, scheming, and 


oppression. The mandarin comes in his sedan-chair, attended 
by his retinue. He takes his seat on the dais in the yamen. 
At his right stands his interpreter, an indispensable function- 
ary, inasmuch as the mandarin, being a mainland man, is not 
supposed to know the local dialect. On either side, in two 
rows facing each other, stand the constables, and near at hand 
the lictors and executioners. The yamen is crowded by friends 
of the litigants and the rabble from the street. There are no 
lawyers or counsel, and no trial by jtuy. The mandarin has 
everything in his own hands. He sits in state, clothed with the 
awful authority of the " dragon " throne. The case in hand is 
presented, and tlie accused kneels before the judgment-seat, 
the picture of abject humility. The mandarin examines him 
through his interpreter : 

Mandarin. " Ask him if his name is Lim." 

Interpreter. " The Great Man asks you if your name is 

Accused. " The little child's name is L^m." 

Interpreter. " His name is Lim." 

Mandarin. "Ask him if he is guilty of the charge made 
against him." 

Interpreter. "The Great Man asks if you are guilty of 
the charge made against you." 

Accused. " The Uttle child would not dare to do such a 

And so the case goes on. Sometimes witnesses are called ; 
this, however, is optional with the mandarin, who is subject to 
other influences than the weight of evidence. The " almighty 
dollar" turns the scale of justice. The financial strength of 
the htigants and of their friends has been inquired into, and 
the one who sends in the largest amount of sycee-silver is 
certain to get the verdict in his favor. To be sure, all this is 
sub rosa. There is the greatest parade of righteous judgment, 
and a hint at bribery would be shocking. But the people all 


know the facts. They have a saying commonly applied to 
their officials : " Koa chiah chi " (" The mandarin eats cash "). 

The magistrate has arbitrary power in the matter of punish- 
ment. The sentence depends not a little on the humor the 
mandarin may be in, but much more on the size of the bribe 
paid. The most common sentence is the fine, and this is 
graded according to the ability of the culprit to pay and ac- 
cording to the fee privately given the judge. 

The next punishment is smiting on the cheeks. This is often 
administered to false witnesses; indeed, it often happens that 
a witness whose evidence is not pleasing to the mandarin is 
immediately beaten. The Great Man expresses his displeasure 
at the evidence, and the constables lay hold of the witness by 
the cue and turn up his face to the lictor, who gives him the 
appointed number of blows. If the witness continues obstinate 
in his evidence he may be beaten again and again. 

Another punishment is the "bamboo." The culprit is 
stripped by the constables under the eye of the mandarin, and 
receives on the thighs from ten to one thousand blows with the 
bamboo cudgel. Sometimes the punishment is inflicted at in- 
tervals, as the " cat-o'-nine-tails " in the West. The " bam- 
boo " is always painful, and at times the flesh is lacerated and 
mortification sets in, which ends the victim's life. 

The cangue is an instrument of humiliation as well as pain. 
It is formed out of heavy oak planks, is nearly three feet 
square, with a hole in the center, and is worn on the neck in 
a public place for a month or two, in some instances both day 
and night. 

Imprisonment for a limited time or for life is a common 
sentence. The prison is always a dark, dirty dungeon, where 
tortures, illegal according to Chinese law, but cruelly real in 
Chinese practice, are inflicted to extort money from the 
prisoners and their relatives. 

Decapitation is inflicted for murder, theft, incendiarism, and 


other grave offenses. The burglar or firebug gets no mercy. 
Ordinarily it is a swift stroke from a sharp two-handed sword. 
In the case of parricide the culprit's body is literally hacked to 

Pirates are punished by having their hands tied behind to 
a post facing the glaring sun, and their upper eyehds cut off. 
After several days of this torture they are beheaded in the 
most excruciatingly painful manner. 

In all these cases money wields all-powerful influence. It 
corrupts the mandarin in his judgment, the lictors and execu- 
tioners in carrying out the sentence, and the local officials in 
disposing of the bodies of the dead. The lictor has his oppor- 
tunity to "squeeze" when the sentence is the "bamboo," the 
blows being heavy or light according to the bribe. The exe- 
cutioner carries out the death-sentence deftly in a short, swift 
stroke or with prolonged torture according to the money paid. 

I witnessed the execution of four soldiers condemned for 
burglary. One was on his knees, and in an instant the work 
was done. Three blows were required for the second. The 
head of the third was slowly sawed ofl[ with a long knife. The 
fourth was taken a quarter of a mile farther, and amid shouts 
and screams and many protestations of innocence he was sub- 
jected to torture and finally beheaded. The difference in the 
bribe made the difference in the execution. 

So m.anifestly corrupt is the whole system, and so difficult is 
it to bring influential criminals to justice, that a periodical 
" ridding up " is necessary. The imperial authorities at Pe- 
king every ten or twelve years appoint some high oflUcial, \\pth 
power over all provincial magistrates, to go through the em- 
pire and examine into long-standing grievances. This storm 
of justice clears the air, and has done not a little to prolong 
the life of the Chinese empire. I happened to be in Tek- 
chham once when this " avenger of blood " ivas making his 
rounds. There lived near the city a local magistrate who for 


many years had oppressed and imposed upon the farmers and 
fishermen in his locality. He was always able to bribe the 
superior magistrates, and was carrying on his extortions with 
impunity. When it was known that the imperial official 
would visit Tek-chham a petition was prepared complaining of 
the local magistrate's conduct. As these poor people would 
not presume to enter the Great Man's presence, they availed 
themselves of the privilege of constructing an effigy or " grass 
man" on the side of the road, in whose hands they placed 
their petition. When the judicial cortege passed that way, 
attendants, seeing the " dummy," brought the document, and 
the official read the appeal as he was carried along. On ar- 
riving at Tek-chham he made inquiries, and finding the com- 
plaints true he summoned the magistrate. Everything was 
prearranged. The magistrate prostrated himself before the 
high official, but while he protested that " the little child would 
not dare to do such a thing," a signal was given, and without 
warning the executioner severed his head from his body. This 
had fine effect on the community and on other magistrates. 

Criminals are sometimes punished by proxy. If the guilty 
party cannot be found, or if he can bribe the magistrate, some 
careless fellow can easily be procured to suffer the punishment. 
A httle "cash" will do it. Once when complaint had been 
made that a certain man had plundered one of our chapels, 
the mandarin at Bang-kah reported to the British consul that 
the man was under arrest. With several students I accom- 
panied the consul to the yamen. No sooner had we entered 
than a man was brought in wearing a cangue. I at once saw 
that he was not the right man. When the consul told the 
mandarin that this was not the charged with the offense 
he confessed that it was a case of proxy, but argued that by 
punishing this man the real culprit would be so afraid that the 
moral influence would be quite as salutary. Another instance 
happened at Sa-teng-po, on the way to Kelung, where the 


chapel was ransacked by runners of the mandarin. Com- 
plaint having been made, the mandarin investigated the case, 
and two men soon appeared before the chapel wearing the 
cangue. I was staying there at the time with my students. I . 
was an open secret that these men had nothing to do with the 
case, but were bribed to wear the cangue for six weeks. We 
treated them kindly, and in wet weather allowed them to come 
inside the chapel, and in other ways relieved them. They did 
not forget this kindness, and years afterward, when the mob 
howled after me in the streets of Bang-kah, one of these men 
stood up in my defense. 

My first experience of the duplicity and unrighteousness of 
the yamen was in the second year of my work. A merchant 
at Chiu-nih, a large village near Bajig-kah, had heard me 
preach at other points, and invited me to his village and gave 
a room for a preaching-hall. The work grew wonderfully, and 
soon the country for many miles around became interested, and 
on the Sabbath packed the hall and the street. Among the 
converts was a teacher and his aged father. As the work 
grew the enemy became more enraged and insolent toward the 
converts. A prominent clansman forcibly seized the teacher's 
small rice-fields, and the head man refused to give redress. 
The teacher and his father prepared an appeal to the mandarin 
at Bang-kah. But meanwhile their enemies had forestalled 
them and prejudiced the minds of the yamen men, telling 
them that the whole country around was in rebellion, joining 
the " barbarian." A plot was laid. When the teacher and 
his father, accompanied by six other converts, one of whom 
was my friend the merchant, presented themselves before the 
mandarin in the yamen, and when the old man was on his 
knees before the judge, he was told by the Great Man that 
it was insolent and disloyal to forsake the religion of their 
fathers and to follow the "barbarian." Then the plot was 
revealed. All at once the constables shouted, rushed hither 


and thither, caught the Christians by the cues, jostled them, and 
holding up long knives in the air, they rushed to the mandarin, 
crying, "The converts brought these knives to assassinate 
you." 'The mandarin pretended to be furious, and gave orders 
to shut the doors and chain the prisoners. One of these was 
a boy, the son of the teacher, but, being under sixteen, was 
allowed to go ; his little companion was chained along with the 
others. They were all dragged to the prison, and put in the 
stocks in the darkest dungeon. Mock trials were held, during 
which they were compelled to kneel on red-hot chains. Again 
and again they were bambooed and otherwise tortured. They 
were then taken down seven days' journey to Tai-wan-fu 
and imprisoned. The teacher and his father were dragged out 
one morning to the execution ground. The son's head was 
chopped off before his father's eyes. The old man was then 
executed, and the two heads were put into buckets and carried 
slowly back to Bang-kah. All along the way and at every 
stopping-place the crier called to the multitude to see the fate 
of those who followed the " barbarian." A poster with the in- 
scription " Jip kon-e lang than " (" Heads of the Christians") 
was fastened over the buckets. In this way they succeeded in 
terrorizing the people. The heads were finally put on the 
gates of the city of Bang-kah. The others of the party were 
brought back to Bang-kah and imprisoned. Two of them 
died from torture and starvation. The merchant lived eight 
years longer, during which time he continued faithful to Christ 
and ceased not to exhort other prisoners to accept the Saviour. 
At first it was very difficult for mg to receive letters from him. 
Several were sent inclosed in small bamboo quills. After some 
years the strictness was relaxed and I received letters from him 
regulariy. The substance of all was this : " I, Tan Su-bi, be- 
lieve all things — heaven and earth, angels and men — were 
created by the great God. I believe our Saviour Jesus be-, 
came man and died for Su-bi. I believe God loves me in 


prison, and his Holy Spirit gives me comfort and keeps me 
cheerful. I thank God that the gospel came to Tamsui." 
The last letter closed with these words : " I believe Jesus my 
Saviour has power to save me and give me eternal life." He 
died shortly afterward. The instigators and participants were 
never brought to justice, but years after they all confessed the 
plot and that the Christians were entirely innocent. 

This is only one instance of the corruption and inhumanity 
of officialdom, and of the violence and injustice inflicted 
upon Christians in North Formosa, witnessed during. the past 
twenty-three years. 

Formosa Aborigines Eating Rice. 

A Village in Eastern Formosa. 



Movement cityward — Chief centers — Industrial classes — Farming — ^The 
pig a pet — Home life in the country — Education — A Chinese school 
— A graduate — Theaters, plays, and actors — Amusements — Horse- 
manship — A novel device — Woman — Marriage — Betrothal — Break- 
ing a betrothal — First Christian marriage — Change in public opinion 

THE Chinese, like the Anglo-Saxons, are gregarious. There 
is a tendency to gather together and to live in towns and 
cities. In Formosa this movement gains headway by reason 
of the protection which it secures. With ^savages in the moun- 
tains not far away, and with desperate characters of all sorts 
watching their chance for plunder, the isolation of rural life is 
not very desirable. Life in town is thought to be safer, if not 
pleasanter, than in the country, and even country people them- 
selves often live in close proximity, grouping their dwellings 
into little villages and hamlets. A dozen or a score of families 
may live together, the men carrjung on their farming-operations 
in the neighborhood. 

The three largest cities in North Formosa are Bang-kah, 
with a population of forty-five thousand ; Tek-chham, with a 
population of thirty-five thousand ; and Toa-tiu-tia, with a pop- 
ulation of thirty thousand. Five other centers— ^Tiong-kang, 
Sek-khau, Sin-po, Sa-kiet-a-koe, and Ba-nih — have each a popu- 
lation exceeding ten thousand. There are a great many towns, 
a still greater number of large villages, and innumerable ham- 
lets and peasants' homes. 



In the cities and towns all classes of workmen and traders 
are to be found. All work is done by hand. The hum of 
machinery is never heard. A list of workmen would include 
blacksmitns, carpenters, cabinet-makers, undertakers, idol- 
carvers, silversmiths, jewelers, workers in pewter and brass, 
implement-makers, locksmiths, weavers, tailors, dyers, shoe- 
makers, masons, stone-cutters, brickmakers, lime and charcoal 
burners. Traders and merchants of all sorts have their shops 
and expose th>.ir wares. The silk merchants are important, and 
fruit and fish merchants do a thriving trade. Skilled workmen 
are paid from thirty to forty cents per day. Ordinary workmen 
earn not more than twenty-five cents. They are generally 
economical, and their expenses are light when compared with 
the expenses of workmen in Western lands. But their life is 
often empty and mean. 

The farmer is not only more important than the mechanic 
or the merchant, he is also more highly esteemed. He is 
looked upon as being the real producer, and his work is more 
honorable than that of him who merely handles his goods and 
passes them on to the consumer. Farms are small and are all 
under cultivation. Rice has long been the chief among farm 
products. In a subsequent chapter on rice-farming the cul- 
ture of this cereal is fully explained. Tea-culture is now be- 
coming important, and Formosa tea is already a popular 
beverage in Britain and America, The large plateau to the 
southwest of Tamsui, that twenty years ago was a meadow 
broken in upon by little rice-farms, is now a magnificent tea- 
plantation. This industry gives employment every year to 
thousands of people, many of whom are brought from the 
mainland. Sugar-cane, sweet potatoes, and a little wheat are 
cultivated. Onions, leek, celery, spinach, cucumbers, water- 
melons, a Chinese white cabbage, and other garden stuffs are 
grown. The indigo and camphor industries are increasing in 
importance. The Chinese farmer, hke the Pe-po-hoan in the 


Kap-tsu-lan plain, uses the ox for dry plowing and the water- 
buffalo in the miry rice-fields. The plow, harrow, hoe, and 
sickle are his implements, and the ox, water-buffalo, and pig 
his stock. He brings all his produce in baskets to the town, 
and offers it for sale in an open space in the street. Failing to 
dispose of his supply in this way, he may hawk the remainder 
about the streets. 

The pig is a great pet among the Chinese. It is always to 
be found about the door, and often has 'ree access into the 
house. In our missionary journeys we frequently found our- 
selves room-mates of an old black pig with her litter of httle 
ones. The affection of an Englishman for his dog is scarcely 
stronger than the affection of a Chinese for his pig. Foreign- 
ers in China should remember this, and not thoughtlessly excite 
enmity and antagonism. Not long after my arrival, when in 
my house at Tamsui, I heard loud voices and hurried tramp- 
ing in the street in front. On opening the door I saw several 
European sailors, from a ship lying at anchor in the harbor, 
running in wild haste down the street toward me. As they 
came near, one of them, mad with rage, asked if I had a gun. 
They were followed by a mob that seemed to be furious and 
eager to overtake them. I directed the sailors down a narrow 
lane, by which they escaped to their ship. Turning to the 
crowd, I asked the cause of the disturbance. They replied 
that the sailors had been striking the pigs belonging to one of 
their families with their walking-sticks. The people were very 
indignant, and had they overtaken the sailors there would 
have been trouble. I appeased them by the assurance that 
should the offenders misbehave again complaint would be 
made to the authorities. 

Farming in Formosa is very hard work, and only by strict- 
est economy can it be made even fairly remunerative. Some 
farmers own the land they work, but the majority rent. In- 
deed, more than half of the cultivated land in North Formosa 


belongs to one man, who rents to others, the rent being paid 
generally in produce. These tenant-farmers frequently live all 
their days in the same place. The sons marry and still con- 
tinue to live in the old home vi^ith their parents, two and some- 
times three generations occupying the same house at the same 
time. They are, on the whole, hard-working, honest, reliable, 
and, as men go, moral. The peasants are indeed the best 
class in the community, instances of immorality being rare. 
Among themselves they are very friendly and sociable, the 
social chat of an evening, or what my Highland ancestors 
called a " ceilidh," being quite characteristic of rural society. 
Education, as they understand it, is not by any means 
neglected among the Chinese. It is more than a thousand 
years since competitive literary examinations were established 
throughout the empire, and those who succeed in passing these 
examinations have always been the most honorable class in 
Chinese society. They are not only socially the superiors of 
all others, but from among them appointments are made to all 
the chief positions of influence and power. Parents are there- 
fore very anxious to have their sons educated. There is in 
Formosa no system of public instruction such as now exists 
in the more advanced States of the American Union or the 
provinces of Canada. The competitive examinations, held by 
the government in the fu cities, provincial capitals, or in 
Peking, according to the degree, are conducted with tiresome 
attention to form and details. The Four Books are the text- 
books, and some saying of Confucius or Mencius the theme 
of their essays. Without describing the system, which is very 
elaborate, it may be said that the higher degrees can scarcely 
be obtained by any who have not more than ordinary ability, 
and the physical strain of preparation and examination very 
frequently wrecks the health of the student. The percentage 
of the successful competitors is very small, but the reflex influ- 
ence of this wide-spread interest in education is very powerful. 


The unsuccessful candidates for the highest degree, and the 
graduates holding lower degrees, constitute the hterarj' class. 
They are the teachers, and, being generally poor, their services 
may be obtained for very little financial remuneration. They 
find employment in the families of the rich or in teaching the 
village school. - Rich men frequently pay the salary of a 
teacher for the children of their poorer neighbors. Ordinarily 
the teacher secures a room and arranges with the parents in 
the locality to have their children taught, the fees going t;o pay 
the teacher. 

A Chinese school is the scene of great industry and of great 
noise. The students all study aloud, and their shrill drawling 
voices make a disagreeable babel. The text-books are tlie 
Chinese classics, and the parents have no cause of complaint 
on the score of frequent -change. The books never change 
from century to century. The characters are first learned ; but 
it is purely mechanical work, not the slightest attention being 
paid to the meaning of the v/ords. The book-language is 
entirely different from the vernacular, and the boy has to 
commit to memory pages, and even whole books, without 
understanding anything of their significance. After years of 
such severe work the boys begin to prepare definitely for the 
competitive examinations. There is nothing really educative 
in the system. Unconsciously the style and sentiments of the 
books are absorbed, but originality, in either thought or expres- 
sion, is not only undesirable, but utterly impossjble. 

When a young man succeeds in passing the examinations 
for even the lowest degree, preparations on a most elaborate 
scale are made at his home for honoring him on his return. 
No one but an eye-witness can imagine the scene. A feast is 
prepared, theatrical performers are often engaged, a procession 
goes out to meet the graduate, who affects all the airs ima- 
ginable, and his conceit is swollen beyond endurance. His 
swagger is supercilious to the point of siUiness. To recognize 


his old companions is a condescension for which they feel ex- 
tremely grateful. The whole performance tends to make these 
graduates the most obnoxious of all the people one meets. 

Mention has just been made of theatrical performances, and 
it should be said that theatrical entertainments among the 
Chinese are very different from those with which foreigners are 
familiar. The actors as a class are numerous enough, but 
there are no opera-houses or halls erected for entertainment 
purposes. These shows in Formosa are almost invariably ex- 
hibited on a platform in the open air, and generally are asso- 
ciated with idolatry. In the open space in front of the temple 
plays are most frequently performed. No admission fee is 
charged, the expense of the show being borne by previous sub- 
scription, or defrayed by some wealthy citizen. There is not 
much art in a Chinese play ; to a foreigner, indeed, it appears 
absurd and dreary. The motif is generally patriotic. Histori- 
cal or fictitious scenes are presented, in which some rebel or 
traitor is the " villain," and after m.uch intrigue, sedition, and 
other crimes against the government, he is arrested, condemned, 
and punished. This kind of play is patronized by the govern- 
ment as tending to inspire the common people with respect and 
awe for the emperor and his representatives. Love, marriage, 
and murder, to be sure, are the stock in trade of Chinese play- 
wrights, and virtue is always rewarded, while vice is as surely 
punished. The costumes of the actors are exceedingly ridicu- 
lous, and the way in which they " speak the speech " would 
excite the disgust of less particular personages than Shake- 
speare, and make the " town crier " an artist in comparison. 
Everything is spoken in a shrill falsetto drawl, and accom- 
panied with such endless, excessive, and excited action that 
Hamlet's judgment that "some of nature's journeymen had 
made men, and not made them well, they imitated humanity so 
abominably," would seem to have special reference to Chinese 
players. In truth, the text of the play, being in the book- 


language, is very imperfectly understood by the audience ; and 
were it not for the colloquial " asides " and the explanations 
given by knowing ones to those about' them, the performance 
would indeed be a " dirnib show " to most of the auditors. I 
have frequently stood in the crowd and watched the players, 
and sometimes they would give spice to their parts by a refer- 
ence to the " black-bearded stranger." There are no actresses 
in these companies, the parts of female characters being taken 
with remarkable skill by men. The social standing of actors 
is low, but probably as high as their merit or their morals 

Puppet-shows are very popular among almost all classes of 
people, and are, in their way, decidedly clever. Kite-flying 
among the Chinese is a science compared with any like exhibi- 
tion seen in Western lands. The children have their tops, 
which they handle with exceptional skill, and their jackstones, 
which never lose their popularity. 

Boat-racing is a common sport, and at Bang-kah I once 
witnessed an exhibition of miHtary horsemanship, that regularly 
draws immense crowds of spectators. The horses are nm 
singly in a long trench several feet high, without bridle or 
saddle. They are trained, and are eager for the race. The 
rider carries a bow and arrow, and the object of the game is 
to shoot at a target set up on one side of the trench near the 
end of the coiu^se, after the principle of the game of tent- 
pegging. The horses require Uttle urging once they enter the 
trench, A curious custom is sHtting the horses' nostrils to in- 
crease their speed. Jockeys observed that after the race a 
horse seemed to have great difficulty in breathing, and this 
extra puffing they supposed was caused by an insufficient es- 
cape for the air from the lungs. To reheve this difficulty, and 
to add to the racer's speed, the nostrils are slit open. 

Among the Chinese in Formosa the position of woman is 
higher tlian among pagan and savage races, but immeasurably 


lower than in Christian lands. The birth of a daughter is no 
occasion for rejoicing, if, indeed, it be not regarded as a 
calamity. The inferiority of woman to man is not an open 
question. She is regarded as useful, but her death, even when 
a wife and mother, is trivial compared with the loss of a 
brother or son. As she advances in years, however, she is 
treated with more respect, and in old age compensation is 
sometimes made, for the neglect of earlier years. 

Marriage is in every way encouraged, not so much as a 
satisfaction for cherished affections and a fulfilment of social 
instincts, but in order to obtain male posterity, who shall 
guard the graves of the dead and minister to the needs of the 
departed spirits of their ancestors. The bearing of this is 
shown in a subsequent chapter dealing with Chinese religious 
hfe. The social aspect of the question is one of the most per- 
plexing problems facing the advocates of reform. 

Marriage is arranged by the parents of the contracting 
parties, without regard to the feelings and preferences of the 
parties themselves. A third party — a -match-maker or go- 
between — is a most important character. Through her the 
arrangements are made. Prenatal betrothal is rare, but not 
by any means unknown. The betrothal of children under ten 
years of age is more common, but the general age for a girl is 
between fifteen and twenty. The most common method is for 
the parents to purchase a young girl and bring her up in their 
own home to be a wife for their son. This is much cheaper, 
as she earns more than she costs, and no gifts or money need 
be paid her parents at the marriage. In such a case the girl 
is called Sim-pu, and is regarded as one of the family, but too 
often is treated with great harshness and cruelty. 

Parents may choose out a suitable wife for their son, and it 
frequently happens that the son agrees in the selection and is 
delighted with his betrothed. But human nature is the same 
the world over, and sometimes the Chinese young man does 


not take kindly to his parents* choice. If the girl has' been 
brought up with him in his home he may come to love her, 
and not to marry her would be a real grief. But should his 
wayward fancy fly far from home and picture maidens fairer 
than the drudge of his mother's kitchen, he may refuse to ac- 
cept his betrothed wife, and if so he will find some way of 
evading the domestic arrangement and the custom of his 
country. It is looked upon as a calamity for the betrothal to 
be broken off, and it is believed dire calamities are sure to 
visit the family of one who violates so venerable a custom. 
Young men sometimes run the risks, however, and follow 
affection rather than custom. 

An instance of the breaking up of an early betrothal came 
under my notice, illustrative of both the old and the new order 
of things. At Go-ko-khi, where our first chapel was built, 
there lived a man of great local influence, named Tan Phauh. 
He was a powerfully built man, who had been through sev- 
eral rebellions on the mainland, and was not used to having 
his plans thwarted by anybody. His services in connection 
with the establishing of our first church are told hereafter. 
He was a loyal Chinese, and, although he became one of our 
earliest converts, he never was unpatriotic or disloyal as a cit- 
izen. There lived with the family a girl who was betrothed to 
his second son. She was a good, hard-working girl, and was 
kindly treated, and really loved as a daughter. The whole 
family became Christian, and this son joined my class of 
students and traveled with us, preparing himself for the min- 
istry. Association with other students, and college life at 
Tamsu', widened his horizon and greatly developed his intel- 
lectual powers. He began to think for himself, and self-con- 
sciousness developed independence. His ideals were enlarged 
and his standards of life changed. The thought of his be- 
trothal began to be burdensome. He had nothing against the 
girl, but she was not his ideal, and he could not cherish for her 


the " supreme affection for one " that philosophers call love. 
She was uneducated, and took no interest in the larger subjects 
and ambitions that now fired his soul. Under such circum- 
stances young men who, thinking themselves in love, voluntarily 
entered into an engagement without the advice or knowledge 
of their parents have been known to fret and become discon- 
tented. Poor Theng cannot, then, be blamed for fretting over 
a betrothal to which he was not a party, made years before he 
understood or cared. On the occasion of one of his visits 
home the question of his marriage to Sim-pu was raised, and 
he distinctly refused. He did not love the girl and could not 
marry her. The grief, disappointment, arid anger of his parents 
were almost beyond control. They were Christians, but the 
custom was an old one, and, besides, they loved Sim-pu. The 
father went to bed and stayed there till his anger cooled. The 
mother felt even more strongly. I visited them and reasoned 
with them, explaining the nature and terms of Christian mar- 
riage, and the teachings of the Bible on the subject. The eld- 
est son agreed with me, and thought his brother should be 
allowed to choose for himself. The younger son stood by the 
venerable social custom, and wanted to know what kind of a 
lady Theng would like for a wife, that he should refuse one 
whom they all loved so much. But Theng was unmoved. In 
the struggle between love and custom the tender passion pre- 
vailed. He would not give his hand, for he could not give his 
heart. The girl felt badly, for she had had her day-dreams, 
Theng married a girl he loved, and Sim-pu married a young 
farmer living a few miles away. The old man often told me 
that only Christianity and the grace of God could reconcile 
him to his son's action. The girl did not cherish any hard 
feelings, as she would have done were she not a Christian. 
When passing near where she lived, she insisted on my visiting 
her new home, and her welcome to myself and the students who 
were with me had no suggestion of animosity or secret regret. 


Maniage, according to Chinese law, is consummated by 
the exchange of necessary documents between the parents of- 
the prospective bride and groom. No hcense is required, and 
no one is authorized to perform the ceremony. There are 
endless social preliminaries, formalities, and ceremonies, and 
on the marriage day the bride is carried from her own home 
to the home of the groom, and there with him bows before 
the ancestral tablet of the family. Feasting and tablet-worship 
mark the occasion. 

It was at Go-ko-khi, the first station established in the 
country, that the first Christian marriage was celebrated. The 
formal documents were exchanged, complying with the law of 
the land, and then the ordinance of marriage according to 
Christian form and teaching was performed. The young man 
belonged, to the clan Tafi, and was twenty-five -years of age; 
the bride was of the clan Ti, and was in her seventeenth year. 
He could not possibly marr}' one of his own clan. To do 
that would be to violate the most sacred and inflexible cus- 
tom. Such a thing as the marriage of two persons having the 
same surname is not known among the Chinese. 

The news that the missionary was about to perform a mar- 
riage ceremony spread rapidly through the region ; and the 
whole neighborhood became excited, alarmed, and enraged. 
The wildest stories were told : " She is going to be the mis- 
sionary's wife for a week;" "The missionary is to kiss her 
first;" "Her own eyes are to 'be taken out and others put in 
their places;" "The amount to be paid the missionary will 
ruin the family." 

On the afternoon of the marriage day a great crowd gath- 
ered at the bridegroom's house. After a long wait music 
was heard in the distance, and the children began shouting, 
" They're coming, they're coming ! " Presently a sedan-chair 
with an old woman, the go-between, appeared, and immedi- 
ately behind a larger and more beautiful one, draped with red 


cloth. Then came twenty-five pairs of bearers carrying pres- 
ents of all descriptions in tables turned upside down and 
suspended from poles borne on the bearers' shoulders. Fire- 
crackers and squibs kept up an incessant floise, doing honor to 
the occasion. The bride's chair halted before the door, and the 
bridegroom, dressed as gorgeously as though he were a great 
official, stepped forward and removed the front part of the 
chair, and led his bride, whom he saw that hour for the first 
time, into the house. They were then called out into the 
courtyard, where hundreds of excited spectators — the majority 
of whom, of course, were women — crowded every available 
space, eager to witness the ceremony. A Christian woman 
acted as bridesmaid, and the groom was supported by a native 
preacher. I then addressed the people on the institution of 
marriage as ordained by God and sanctified by Christ, and 
emphasized the importance of monogamy and mutual respect 
and forbearance. The contracting parties were then ex- 
horted, the " vows " put, and they were pronounced husband 
and wife. 

As soon as the service was over the young couple were taken 
back into the house. In view of the suspicions of the people, 
i deemed it prudent to take leave at once, and set out with 
the students to the nearest chapel. In a few days the report 
of the Christian marriage spread far and wide, and now the 
missionary was praised as liberally as he had previously been 
blamed. The Christian ceremony was pronounced everything 
that was beautiful and good, and during all succeeding years, 
although I not only performed the ceremony hundreds of 
times, but also waited for the subsequent festivities, and even 
accepted invitations to heathen households, no unjust insinua- 
tions were ever again made, or anything said against the 
morality of Christian marriage. 



Heathenism in Formosa — Gods and goddesses innumerable — A new can- 
didate — Praying with divining-blocks — Idol-making industry — Wip- 
ing out devotional arrearages — An offering of two hundred hogs — 
"Seventh Moon Feast," a hideous spectacle — Ancestral worship — 
Annual family gathering — An "open sgsame " — A burdensome 
curse — Lifted by the gospel 

RELIGIOUSLY the Chinese in Formosa are related to the 
Chinese on the mainland, especially in the Fukien prov- 
ince. They are all idolaters. Transportation and separation 
from the huge mass may, indeed, have had the effect of loosen- 
ing the bonds and making idolatry in Formosa less unyielding 
in its hold and less hopelessly blinded in its outlook than it is 
in China. The incessant struggle for life in a new country' may 
also have done something. At all events, it would seem as 
though there were more laxity, more indiffercntism, among the 
masses of the peopL than may be found on the mainland. 

But the heathenism of Formosa is of the "same kind and 
quality as the heathenism of China, It is the same poisonous 
mixture, the same dark, damning nightmare. The original ele- 
ment was Confucianism — a system of morality, with its worship 
of heaven, its deification of ancestors, and its ethical maxims. 
Centuries after, Tauism was added — a system of demonolatry, 
with its spirit-superstition and wretched incantations. Then 
from India Buddhism was brought — a system of idolatry, with 
its shrines and smoking incense. These three systems existed 


side by side until the dividiiig- walls began to crumble; and 
now the three are run together, a commingling of conflicting 
creeds, degrading the intellect, defiling life, and destroying all 
religious sentiment. In Western lands one hears much about 
Oriental religions, the beauties of Buddhism, and the like. 
One who knows is not deceived. These indiscriminating 
laudations are false and vain, the outcome of ignorance or the 
enchantment of distance. I know something of the delights 
of Buddhism, not as seen from the platform of a Parliament of 
Religions, but as Buddhism really is in its own country. For 
twenty-three years I have been in the midst of heathenism, 
brushing against its priests and people ; and I know the poison 
of its sweets, the fatal flash of its light, and the stagnant fetor 
of its life. 

It is not needful that an exposition of the complex religious 
system of the Chinese be here presented. Of late years the 
literature on that subject has greatlj' increased, and students 
will find in the works of such authors as Wells-Williams, Ne- 
vius, Du Bose, and others, intelligent and detafled discussion. 
What they have reported regarding the mainland is to a large 
degree true in regard to Formosa ; and for the purposes of this 
book, beyond a general survey, all that is possible is some ref- 
erence to points and customs not dealt with by the authors 

The Chinese in Formosa have innumerable gods and god- 
desses, many rehgious festivals, and countless superstitions that 
burden their life. The names of their idols would fill pages, 
and the details of their beliefs and worship volumes. There 
are gods having authority over each of the various powers of 
nature, departments of industry, relationships of life, states of 
feehng, physical conditions, and moral sentiments. Some have 
been worshiped for centuries ; others are of recent date. Some 
are universal, receiving the adoration of all classes throughout 
the Chinese empire ; others are local or special, and are rever- 


enced only in particular localities or by certain orders. The 
origin of the worship of many of the idols is a mystery, but 
modern instances are suggestive. In 1878 a girl hving notiar 
from Tamsui wasted away and died, a victim of consumption. 
Some one in that neighborhood, more gifted than the rest, an- 
•nounced that a goddess was there, and the wasted skeleton of 
the girl became immediately famous. She was given the name 
Sien-lu-niu ("Virgin Goddess "), and a small temple was erected 
for her worship. The body was put into salt and water for 
some time, and then placed in a sitting position in an arm- 
chair, with a red cloth around the shoulders and a wedding- 
cap upon the head ; and seen through the glass, the black face, 
with the teeth exposed, looked very much like an Egyptian 
mummy. Mock money was burned and incense-sticks laid in 
front. Passers-by were told the story, aod as they are willing 
to worship anything supposed to have power to help or harm, 
the worship of this new goddess began. Before many weeks 
hundreds of sedan-chairs could be seen passing and repassing, 
bringing worshipers, especially women, to this shrine. Rich 
men sent presents to adorn the temple, and all took up the cry 
of this new goddess. But the devotees were disappointed, for 
the divining-blocks gave no certain answers; and while they 
might continue to reverence an unanswering goddess whom 
their ancestors had worshiped before them, they had not the 
same respect for a new candidate. One woman who had 
heard the gospel several years before, while we were preaching 
in the town of Kim-pau-li, was being carried to worship at this 
temple ; and when on a high narrow path, through some acci- 
dent she was tumbled down the bank in her sedan-chair. She 
returned home very much displeased with herself, and angry at 
those who introduced this new object of worship. Her confi- 
dence in the idol was all the more easily shaken because of the 
secret working in her mind and heart of the gospel heard years 
before. Indeed, all attempts to make the worship of this new 


goddess popular and universal failed, and failed because " the 
light of life was in the lic Id." A hundred years ago, however, 
she would soon have had millions before her presenting their 
offerings and -beseeching her favor. 

Idol-temples are common throughout the country, and idols 
may be seen imder trees and near bridges for travelers and 
chance devotees to bum money and toss the divining-blocks. 
Their method of petition is saddening to behold. Divining- 
blocks are used. These are made of bamboo roots split into 
two pieces, each piece having one side convex, the other flat. 
With these two blocks, two or three inches in length, the peti- 
tioner stands before the idol and offers his prayer. The peti- 
tion is presented in the form of a question ; e.g., " O idol, will 
you give me wealth? " The blocks are then waved in the 
hands three times and tossed on the floor. If either the two 
convex or the two flat sides are turned upward the answer of 
the idol is in the negative ; but if one convex and one fiat side 
be upward the answer is in the affirmative. If the petition be 
granted the blocks are returned to their place, and vows may 
be made and mock money either burned or placed in front of 
the idol. The offerings presented are in accordance with the 
favors granted. Should the divining-blocks return a negative 
answer from the god, the petitioner, if very importunate, will 
try again and again, and this " heads or tails " form of prayer 
may be kept up until the desired answer is obtained. 

Idolatry is the mother of a vtry extensive industry, as the 
manufacture of idols is a thriving business. There is litrie art 
about it, as the Chinese idols are inartistic in form, grotesque, 
hideous. They are made sometimes of stone or bronze, gen- 
erally of wood or clay. The wood of the camphor-tree is 
often used in idol manufacture. After much use the idol is 
taken back for repairs — repainted, regilded, an arm or head to 
be replaced, an ear reset, or the eyes to be touched up or made 
new. The various parts are cut out or moulded into shape and 


put together by the idol-maker, and ttie devotee walks out of 
the place with the God of War or the Goddess of the Sea! 
The paper money used in worship is made out of tinfoil, beaten 
thin, and sold in packages. A great number of men are em- 
ployed in the manufacture of candles for idolatrous purposes. 
Many of the Chinese, especially the women, are devout 
worshipers ; many others are skeptical, and the majority are 
careless. Idolatry has a powerful hold on their minds, but it 
is only when reverses and troubles come that the average man 
will resort to the temple. They believe the gods have power 
to help or to injture them, but so long as things go well they 
are careless about their devotions. There are great occasions 
when a feast is held or a general offering made, and then all 
devotional arrearages are wiped out. I once attended an im- 
mense gathering in honor of the God of Medicine, when an 
-offering of two hundred hogs was made. It was on the birth- 
day of the god, and in a grass hut on a small plateau five miles 
north of Tamsui the idol was seated. In front of the god, 
pork, fowl, rice, fish, eggs, tea, and spirituous Uquors were set. 
A Tauist priest performed incantations, bowing, chanting, and 
beseeching the god to be favorable and to partake of the feast 
■provided. Fragrant incense-sticks were burned, and at inter- 
vals mock money was offered. Outside the hut men were busy 
preparing the great feast for the god. Two hundred dressed 
hogs, on frames prepared for the purpose, were ranged all 
around in rows, art orange in the mouth of each, and a large 
knife stuck in the back of the neck. These hogs varied in 
weight from fifty to four hundred and eighty pounds. Fully 
four thousand men, women, and children were present, each 
family displaying its own articles to the best advantage. In 
he evening torches, music, and theatrical performances added 
othe honor done to the poor camphor- wood god -in the grass 


The most elaborate and hideous scene I ever witnessed was 


the " Seventh Moon Feast." The seventh month was the time 
for making offerings to all departed spirits. It was a time of 
great festivity and excitement. The custom prevailed in all 
the cities and towns in North Formosa of erecting, in an open 
space of several acres, great cone-hke structures of bamboo 
poles, from five to ten feet in diameter at the base, and some- 
times fifty or sixty feet high. Around these cones, from bottom 
to top, immense quantities of food, offered to the spirits, were 
tied in rows. There were ducks and smaller fowl, dead and 
alive, pork, fish, cakes, fruits, bananas, pineapples, and all 
manner of delicacies in season ; and fastened everywhere in the 
mass were hundreds of huge fire-crackers. On one occasion I 
saw fifty such cones at a feast at Bang-kah. It was a grue- 
some sight. When night came on and the time for summoning 
the spirits approached, the cones were illuminated by dozens 
of lighted candles. Then the priests took up their position on 
a raised platform, and by clapping their hands and sounding 
a large brass gong they called the spirits of all the departed to 
come and feast on the food provided. " Out of the night and 
the other world " the dead were given time to come and to 
gorge themselves on the " spiritual " part of the feast, the es- 
sence, that was suited to their ethereal requirements. Mean- 
while a very unspiritual meb — thousands and thousands of 
hungry beggars, tramps, blacklegs, desperadoes of all sorts, 
from the country towns, the city slums, or venturing under 
cover of the night from their hiding-places among the hills — 
surged and swelled in every part of the open space, impatiently 
waiting their turn at the feast. When the spirits had consumed 
the " spiritual " part, the " carnal " was the property of the mob, 
and the mob quite approved of this division. But the time 
seemed long. At length the spirits were satisfied, and the 
gong was sounded once more. That was the signal for the 
mob ; and scarcely had the first stroke fallen when that whole 
scene was one mass of arms and legs and tongues. Screaming, 


cursing, howling, like demons of the pit, they all joined in the 
onset. A rush was made foir"the cones, and those nearest 
seized the supports and pulled now this way, now that. The 
huge, heavily laden structures began to sway from side to side 
until with a crash one after another fell into the crowd, crush- 
ing their way to the ground. Then it was every man for him- 
self. In one wild scramble, groaning and yeUing all the while, 
trampling on those who had lost their footing or were smoth- 
ered by the falling cones, fighting and tearing one another like 
mad dogs, they all made for the coveted food. It was a very 
bedlam, and the wildness of the scene was enhanced by the 
irregular explosion of the fire-crackers and the death-groan of 
some one worsted in the fray. As each secured what he could 
carry, he tried to extricate himself from the mob, holding fast 
to the treasures for v/hich he had fought, and of which the less 
successful in the outskirts of the crowd would fain plunder him. 
Escaping the mob, he hurried to his home, expecting every 
moment to be attacked by those who thought it easier to way- 
lay and rob the solitary spoilsman than to join in the general 
scramble in the plain. 

One cannot estimate the demoralizing effects of such feasts ; 
and it is to the credit of that progressive governor, Liu Ming 
Chuan, that the barbarities of the " Seventh Moon Feast " have 
been entirely abolished in Formosa. Such a sight as has been 
described will never again be witnessed there. 

In a general and broad sense all their worship is ancestral, 
as their gods are the deified spirits of some of the distinguished 
dead. But the worship of their gods is not the real rehgion of 
the Chinese, the idol-shrine is not their most holy place. Their 
real religion is the worship of their ancestors, their real idol the 
ancestral tablet. The worship of ancestors is certainly of very 
ancient date, and was sanctioned by the Chinese sage Con- 
fucius. Their doctrine is that each man has three souls. At 
death one soul goes into the unseen world of spirits, the second 


goes down into the grave, and the third hovers about the old 
homestead. For the first the priest is responsible. The second 
and third claim the services of living relatives, the grave being 
tended for the one, while the other is invited to take up its 
abode in a tablet of wood ; and from that hour the ancestral 
tablet becomes the most sacred thing in the possession of the 
family. It is simply a narrow piece of wood, about a foot long, 
two or three inches wide, and half an inch thick, set in a low 
pedestal, and on one side are inscribed the ancestral names. 
The eldest son has charge of the tablet and its worship. It is 
placed in the main hall of the house, offerings are presented 
before it, and incense burned to it every day. The son regards 
that tablet as in very truth the abode of a personal being who 
is far more to him for weal or woe than all the gods of the 
empire. The gods are to be feared and their favor is to be 
propitiated ; but ancestors are loved and their needs in the 
spirit-world generously supplied. The heathen Chinese have 
no knowledge of the " Father's house of many mansions," 
where " they hunger no more, neither thirst any more." To 
them the dead are dependent on their living relatives, and 
should they be neglected they would become beggar spirits, 
hungry, naked, penniless, with will and power to punish their 
undutiful ofTspring for their neglect. Food must therefore be 
offered before the tablet, to satisfy the hunger of the spirit ; 
paper clothing must be burned to hide its nakedness, and paper 
money to give it independence in the world of shades. 

There are some things' that appeal to human nature in this 
ancestral idolatry. Its motive may be fear, but its basis is filial 
piety. And there is something very solemn about their annual 
family gatherings before the spirit-tablets of their dead. The 
most sacred time in all the Chinese calendar is the last night 
of the old year, when the chief family feast is held and sacri- 
fices are offered to the ancestral guests. To be present on such 
an occasion, the son returns home, it may be, from beyond the 


Pacific. The household assemble in their family oratory. 
No stranger is there. Before them are the sacred tablets, 
theil: household gods, and with reverence they present their 
offerings, bum their sacrifices, and bow themselves in worship. 
Pork, fish, fowl, vegetables, i.^e, and some spirituous liquor 
constitute the food, which is offered smokxug hot, and the 
spirits feast upon its essence carried up in the ascending steam. 
Paper clothing and mock money are burned, and as the smoke 
curls up the spirits are clothed and enriched. Lest any vaga- 
bond spirit, neglected by its living offspring, should be hover- 
ing about seeking an entrance into this hallowed place, a 
supply of food is set outside the door, that the hungry soul 
may be satisfied and not intrude. This ancestral feast on the 
last night of the year is to the Chinese what Passover night is 
to the pious Jew. 

It has been my custom never to denounce or revile, what is 
so sacredly cherished, but rather to recognize whatever of truth 
or beauty there is in it, and to utihze it as an " open sesame " 
to the heart. Many, many times, standing on the steps of a 
temple, after singing a hymn, have I repeated the fifth com- 
mandment, and the words '■' Honor thy father and thy mother " 
never failed to secvu"e respectful attention. Sometimes a frail 
old man, whose cue was white, and whose hands trembled on 
his staff, would nod approvingly and say, " That is heavenly 
doctrine." Having gained common ground, and having dis- 
coursed on the duties to earthly parents, the transition of 
thought to our Father in heaven is easily made. Prejudices 
have been overcome in this way, and minds disposed to the 
truth of the gospel. The worship of idols is first given up ; 
but it may be months — perhaps a year — before the tablet can 
be forsaken. The truth about the soul, death, and the here- 
after must be firmly grasped, or it will wring the heart to throw 
away the tablet. 

Ancestral worship has its beauties, and in its exaltation of 


marriage it may indirectly have been a blessing ; but it has its 
darker side, and in its train follow domestic infelicity, miscar- 
riage of justice, and a social and morai bondage that subjects 
the millions of the living to the degrading service of the dead, 
A marriage that does not result in the birth of a son, who will 
guard his father's grave and worship at the ancestral shrine, is 
a source of perpetual misery, giving the husband just cause for 
ill-treating his wife, putting her away, or resorting to con- 
cubinage. Should an only son whose parents are dead be 
arraigned before a magistrate and found guilty of the most 
heinous crime, the fact that there is no one else to attend to 
the offices of ancestral worship wculd interfere with the exe- 
cution of a just sentence, as the magistrate would shrink from 
the responsibility of depriving the spirits of the departed of the 
care and support they require. And this ancestral worship 
blocks the way of all change and progress, because to make 
any change in social customs or religious- forms " would distiurb 
the status between men and spirits, and thus prove fatal to the 
repose of the dead and the safety of the hving." 

This venerable cultus, the worship of ancestors, is indeed the 
most stubborn obstacle Christianity has to face. It is so en- 
grained in the nature, and appeals so touchingly to the heart, 
that it requires the strongest conviction and the finest moral 
courage to break its thraldom and brave the scorn of friends 
and relatives, to whom neglect of one's ancestors in the spirit- 
world is the most inhuman and cruelest of crimes. The gospel 
of the risen Saviour, shedding light on the immortal life, and 
redeeming men from the heavy bondage of ignorance, super- 
stition, and fear, is proving itself the only power that can save 
to the uttermost. It drives out the false by the e.xpulsive power 
of truth, and under its vivifying influences the devotees of the 
tablet turn from the darkening past and look forward and up- 
ward to the hills of the Homeland, where the weary rest in the 
light of God. 



Purpose — Learning the language — With the herdboys — First sermon — 
The literati — Coming of A Hoa — Conversion of Go Ek Ju — A Chris- 
tian family 

IN April, 1872, I had secured a house in Tamsui, and faced 
the question, Why am I here ? Is it to study the geology, 
botany, or zoology of Formosa ? Is it to examine into ques- 
tions about the racial relations of the inhabitants ? Is it to 
study the habits and customs of the people ? No ; not for 
that did 1 leave my native home. Not for that did the church 
in Canada ordain me and send me out. My commission is 
clear ; I hold it from the King and Head of the church : " Go 
ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature." 
Whatever else may be done, that commission must be fulfilled. 
More than that. Whatever else may be done must have a 
real and positive bearing on the fulfilment of that commission. 
Whatever of history, geology, ethnology, sociology, or of any 
other subject may engage the missionary's attention must be 
regarded in its relation to the gospel. To get the gospel of 
the grace of God into the minds and hearts of the heathen, 
and when converted to build them up in their faith — that was 
my purpose in going to Formosa. I had it clearly before me 
at the beginning, and nothing has been allowed to obscure it 
or make it less than supreme. 

But the question of ways and means had yet to be answered ; 



and taking things as they came, my first duty was to learn the 
language. Already I had mastered the eight tones of the 
Formosan dialect and had learned a few words. But what 
was that compared with the task scarcely begun ? I had no 
teacher, and there were then no books of much use to a be- 
ginner. My Chinese servant, who returned with me from the 
trip down the west coast with Messrs. Ritchie and 'Dickson, 
was my only helper. I spent hours with him pronouncing 
words and imitating sounds. He was not used to that kind 
of service, and at times would look at me doubtfully, as 
though he thought me a little daft. I kept away from the 
main street and wandered out into the coimtry in the hope of 
meeting some peasant with whom I might converse, and from 
whom I might learn something of the language of the common 
people. Out on the downs I saw a dozen boys herding water- 
buffaloes. As soon as I went near they yelled, "Foreign 
devil, foreign devil ! " jiunped on the ground, waved their 
large sun-hats, and disappeared behind boulders. The next 
day I tried them again. They looked at me in silence, but 
on the alert, and ready to run at the 'first sign of danger. The 
third day I spoke to them, and as I had carefully practised 
my words they exclaimed, in utter astonishment, " He knows 
our language!" That the "barbarian" could speak even a 
few of their words interested them very much. I took out my 
watch and held it up for them to see. "They were around me 
instantly, feeling my hands, fingers, buttons, and clothes. The 
herdboys and I became friends that day, and ever after they 
would wait my coming with eager interest. I was out there 
on the plateau with them every day for four or five hours, 
talking to them, hearing them talk, noting down new words 
and phrases, imtil my vocabulary began to grow with a rapidity 
that qviite amazed my servant". I learned more of the spoken 
dialect from those herdboys than in any other way, and years 
^fter, when they grew to manhood, they condnued friendly, anc} 


were always delighted to recall the first days on the buffalo- 
pasture. Several of them became converts to Christianity, 
one a student and preacher. 

All this time I was working away at the written characters 
with my English-Chinese dictionary. It was slow and vexa- 
tious. Without a teacher or helper, and having none of the 
improved dictionaries, it sometimes took hours to find the 
meaning of one character. 

In this way I learned the spoken dialect in the daytime 
from the herdboys, and studied the characters from the books 
at night, all the while practising aloud in order to train both 
tongue and ear. Something new was learned every day, and 
my old servant had to listen to new words and sentences and 
hear the old ones over again every night. It is entirely prob- 
able that he said some things I did not understand, and that 
were not very complimentary. I am quite stue he became 
sick and tired of my questions and cross-questions. After a 
few weeks in my service he collapsed, and left me to march 
up and down the room reciting and rehearsing by myself. I 
never saw him again. These exercises were not in vain, how- 
ever, and as I shunned all Europeans and English-speaking 
Chinese, and spoke to every other man who would listen to 
me, within five months I had so far mastered the language 
that I was able to preach my first sermon ; and while it was 
much shorter than the sermons I was accustomed to hear in 
Zorra, it was listened to by some of "those heathen hearers 
with strict attention. The text was, " What must I do to be 
saved? " The room was full. Some sneered, others laughed 
outright, but some were respectful and attentive. 

While studying the language I was also coming into touch 
with the people. The proud, conceited literati would enter 
my room, open my Bibles and other books, throw them on the 
floor, and then strut out with a grunt of contempt. I got a 
large sheet of Chinese paper, printed on it the ten comraan4- 


ments, and pasted it on the outside of my door. It was soon 
daubed with mud and then torn down. A second was simi- 
larly treated. The third was put up and remained untouched. 

One forenoon a young man, prepossessing in appearance, 
and of more than ordinary intelligence, called upon me and 
questioned me on many subjects. When he was leaving I 
invited him to return in the evening and have another talk. 
He promised, and was there at the time mentioned, and re- 
mained during brief exercises and the singing of a hymn. I 
read one of our hymns, the subject of which is the brevity of 
human life, and presented him with a copy of the hymn-book. 
There was something about the young man that attracted my 
attention and made me think more about him after he had 
gone than about any oi the others with whom I had met. He 
was intelligent and respectable, but there was a seriousness, 
a downrightness, that marked him as superior, I had been 
pleading with God to gv\G me as the first convert a,n intelligent 
apd active young man. Long before I had reached Formosa 
that had been the burden of my prayer. That night when I 
was alone in my room the thought flashed upon my mind that 
my prayer was heard, and that this young stranger was the 
man I had prayed for. So powerfully did the conviction 
come home to me that, although I had not a tittle of evidence 
of his conversion, I slept little that night for very gratitude. 

In a day or two the young pian returned, bringing with him 
a graduate of some note, who discussed questions of rehgion 
with me for some time. It was clear now that there was to 
be a conflict with the literati, and that day I began studying 
their language and. religion with more earnestness than ever. 
The next time the young man came he brought with him six 
graduates, who remained for two hours discussing and ques- 
tioning. A few days -later he brought several others. Then 
he came with a hterary man of a higher degree, a ku-jin, and 
twenty graduates and teachers. By this time I had become 


so interested that with the utmost eagerness I entered into the 
discussion and attacked them on their own ground. Question 
after question was put to them touching their three religions, 
Confucianism, Buddhism, and Tauism. They were surprised 
at the " barbarian's " knowledge of their sages and their teach- 
ings. Their spokesman was soon entangled, and in a little 
while they all left the room. Within half an hour the young 
man returned. He looked more serious than ever. I read the 
hymn "A day's march nearer home." His eyes brightened, 
and he said, " What you read now suits me. I love those 
words, and I am convinced that the doctrines you teach are 
true. I brought all those graduates and teachers to silence 
you or to be silenced. I have thought a great deal about 
these things of late, and I am determined to be a Christian, 
even though I suffer death for it. The Book you have has 
the true doctrine, and I should like to study it with you." I 
wrote down all the young man said in my journal, at his own 
request ; and with the record now before me, my -mind goes 
back to that day in the month of May, 1872. 1 recall some- 
thing of the feelings of that hour — the strange thrill of joy, the 
hope, perhaps the fear, the gratitude, and the prayer. I look 
back through these twenty-three years, see the earnest face of 
that young man, and hear again his words of resolve and con- 
viction. Were those true words ? Who can say one syllable 
was untrue? That young man became a Christian, a student, 
a preacher, and to-day, after twenty-three long years of trial 
and testing, he is there still, the chief among the native preach- 
ers, the man to whom, more than to any other, the care of 
sixty churches in the mission in North Formosa falls. His 
name is Giam Chheng Hoa, better known as A Hoa. Will 
any one who knows anything about the history of mission 
work in Formosa say that A Hoa's brave resolution, made on 
that day so long ago, has failed? 

Some time after A Hoa became a disciple, a painter in 



Tamsui named Go Ek Ju persisted in disturbing our meet- 
ings and molesting us. When I was addressing the people at 
night, with the door open, he would pass by and throw peb- 
bles inside. When the door was closed he would look through 
holes and listen to all that was said. His habitual custom was 
to lie in wait for A Hoa when on his way home after worship. 
First alone, then with others, he woula jerk A Hoa's cue, slap 
him in the face, stand right before him in the street, and insult 
him in other ways. We just pleaded with God every day to 
give the man light from above. One afternoon a medium- 
sized, thin-faced, pock-marked, intelligent-looking fellow came 
to me at our house and said, " I am sorry for my past conduct 
toward A Hoa and you, and beg you to forgive me." It was 
Go Ek Ju, the painter. He took his stand as a Christian that 
night, and publicly declared his allegiance to Christ. 

After his conversion he spent every hour of spare time in 
study. But his aged mother — how she cried, raged, and 
threatened when she heard what her only son had done! 
How true it sometimes is that " a man's foes shall be they of 
his own household " ! His two sisters sent him word privately 
to keep away from the house, lest something serioiis should 
1 appen. The poor, warm-hearted son was to be pitied, and 
A Hoa went with him to his former home. They were re- 
ceived with bitterness, for relatives, neighbors, and constables 
goaded the mother on tp desperation. At length I went to 
the house with him and A Hoa. Go Ek Ju sat beside me. 
The mother, who was engaged pounding rice, looked angry 
and fierce. She gave a few replies to my explanations, then 
flew into a rage and moved toward her son with a mallet in 
her uplifted hand. I intercepted her, grasped the mallet, and 
threw it outside. We walked out, subject to abuse from the 
infuriated mother. We now prayed for that woman. In a 
few days one of the daughters was prostrated with a severe 
illness. Sorcerers, doctors, and idols were consulted in vain, 


and the poor mother's heart was bleeding. Some one advised 
European medicines, and I was called in to prescribe. The 
malarial fever from which the girl was suffering soon yielded 
to the remedies. With the mother's heart now softened and 
gladdened, there was no difficulty in getting her consent to the 
son's continuance as a student. Before long, son, mother, and 
daughter all shared in the hope of the gospel. It became a 
Christian household, and all have remained steadfast until this 
day. The son has been a preacher for twenty-one years, and 
the mother a Bible-woman for a third of that time. 



The first student — A Hoa's early life — Studying together — A Hoa's first 
prayer — Beauty in nature — First trials — First testing — First baptism 
— First communion — First chapel — First services — First preacher — • 
First female convert 

A NATIVE ministry for the native church was- an idea that 
took shape in my mind before leaving Canada, My 
prayer had been for a young man of such gifts as would mark 
him out for the sacred office. The prayer had been answered, 
and the coming of A Hoa seemed to indicate the mind of the 
Head of the church. From the very beginning I began train- 
ing the first convert for the work of the ministry. He became 
at once both pupil and companion. On the morning after his 
confession he came to my house, and as my old servant had 
wearied of my everlasting Chinese chatter, he set to work and 
made the room' clean and neat. The result was that he joined 
himself to me and took full charge of all housekeeping affairs. 
The early life of this first convert and preacher is deserving 
of notice. His family surname Js Giam. When his father 
was ten years of age the family came from the mainland 
of China. Their old homestead was near Foo-chow. His 
mother was born on Steep Island, northeast of Formosa, and 
belonged to the clan Tan. When thirteen years of age she 
moved to Tamsui, and five years later was married to Mr. 
Giam. There in Tamsui, in the very house I afterward rented 


in 1872, and in the very room I first occupied, their first-bom 
son, who was to be so great an instrument in God's hand in 
overthrowing the heathen religion and bringing many of his 
countrymen to a knowledge of the world's Redeemer, was 


A Hoa opened his eyes to poverty and a hard hfe, for his 
father died before he looked upon his face. His widowed 
mother was left poor, and could ill afford to provide nourish- 
ing food for herself and child. As a result he was weak and 
delicate, and his mother took him to an idol in the town, 
seeking advice. The answer was, "Let him be called my 
child, and name him Hut-a." In time this name, which means 
" Idol's Child," was changed to Hok-a, then to Hoa, and lastly 
to A Hoa. He grew up a filial son, and his care and respect 
for his mother, who is still aUve, are very touching. During 
boyhood his days were spent with his mother and his even- 
ings with his teacher, a relative, who belonged to the Squeers 
school of dominies. The years from ten to seventeen were 
spent almost entirely in study. He then entered the service 
of a mandarin, who gave him employment first as scullion and 
last as private secretary. He traveled considerably in China 
from Foo-chow to Tientsin, and spent six months in Peking, 
Shortly after this he returned to Tamsui, and not long after 
his retxirn I landed in Formosa. How he was led to the gos- 
pel, and his decision to become a Christian, have already been 

A Hoa proved a faithful servant and a most apt and diligent 
student. I began by teaching him to read and write the 
romanized colloquial, i.e., the Chinese spelled with "English 
letters. His progress was simply astonishing. Nor was I 
losing time myself. With a helper like A Hoa, who was as 
eager as myself, I found my stock of Chinese words rapidly 
increase, and the difficulties of pronunciation more easily over- 
come. When in the house we ^-ead, sang, studied, drilled, the 


whole day long. A neighbor entered one day to see if we 
had both become altogether crazy. He meant well, but was 
a little afraid of us. He brought us two cups of tea as a spe- 
cific, and suggested a visit to the nearest temple as a good 
thing for people affected as we were. There may have been 
some humor in the scene, but we started a hymn, and, fearing 
another outbreak, the man bolted out of the door, dropping 
the tea-cups on the fioor in his frightened haste. He would 
not venture back, but in about an hour a little boy came in for 
the fragments of the dishes. 

As A Hoa advanced in his studies I procured a map of the 
world, and it was amusing to watch him as his eye took in the 
vastness of other countries than China. His Chinese notions 
about geography were upset, and he soon began to have 
thoughts about the wide world outside the Chinese wall and 
beyond the broad Pacific. Astronomy, too, became a favorite 
and inspiring study. But the chief subject was the Bible and 
" that wonderful redemption, God's remedy for sin." He was 
with me every evening as I preached to the people, and their 
threats were as angry against him as against the " barbarian." 
He traveled with me, too, on short trips into the country. 
One morning we called on one of his old friends, a farmer, 
living not far from Tamsui. When they recognized us two 
fierce dogs were set on us, and the children yelled after us, 
pelting us with stones. 

In all these services A Hoa was only a companion, and 
never did more than join in singing. The time had come 
when his own gifts must be exercised. One evening, when we 
were alone in our room, I asked him to engage in prayer. 
He had never attempted audible prayer in his life, and the re- 
quest came upon him unexpectedly. Immediately he fell on 
his knees before a rickety old bamboo chair. He was terribly 
in earnest, and his halting words and broken petitions were 
charged with intense emotion. Grasping the arms of the 


chair firmly with both hands, he shoved it about the hard, un- 
even floor, making a hideous creaking accompaniment to his 
faltering sentences. By the time the prayer was finished he 
had moved half-way across the room. The scene had even to 
me a ludicrous aspect, and had others been present it would 
scarcely have been to their edification ; but the prayer was sin- 
cere, and to God in heaven it was an incense of sweet smell. 
I noted the words : " Lord, thou art the true God. I did not 
know thee a few months ago. Help me to know more and 
more of thee. I know now that the idols our people worship 
cannot save their souls. I thank thee from the bottom of my 
heart that Pastor MacKay came to us. Lord, help me by the 
Holy Spirit to bring my mother, relatives, and neighbors to 
Jesus. We do not know much, but, O God, help me, help us. 
This is my heart's desire." 

One morning early I started out with A Hoa, crossed the 
Tamsui River, visited a Buddhist priest in a temple, and then 
began the -ascent of the Quan-yin Mountain, the side of which 
was covered with tall grass that would cut like a knife. When 
we reached the summit, seventeen hundred feet above the sea, 
our hands were sore and bleeding. The view from the moun- 
tain-top repaid us for the pain and toil. It was magnificetit. 
But poor A Hoa was greatly perplexed, wondering what 
under the whole heavens could be my purpose. Like all 
other Chinese, he had no eye for the beautiful in nature, and 
to climb a mountain for the mere pleasure of gazing on the 
scenery was to him past comprehension. At first he was a 
little afraid as we looked down upon Tamsui lying at our feet, 
and far inland saw the broad stretches of the Bang-kah plain. 
His senses were dormant, however, not dead. Standing there 
together we sang the One Hundredth Psalm, and before the last 
verse was finished the great Spirit, who makes all things beau- 
tiful in earth and sky and sea, touched A Hoa's soul. His 
nature was stirred to its very depths. It was the birth-hour 


of the beautiful. His new-born soul had now an eye and ear 
for God's message in creation, and from that hour he became 
a devoted student and ardent lover of everything in nature. 

In the autumn of the same year we visited Kelung for the 
first time. On the way we passed through Bang-kah, the 
largest city in the north, where the citizens showed signs of 
bitterest hostility, and many followed, revihng and pelting us 
with stones. A Hoa was now becoming familiar with the 
taunting cries that everywhere greeted us: "Foreign devil! 
Black-bearded barbarian ! " At Sek-khau, on the banks of the 
Kelung River, broken bricks gave emphasis to the cries when 
otir backs were turned. As dark came on we were making 
oiu- way along a path through tall reeds and grasses, when, at 
a sudden turn, a band of robbers with their long spears flashed 
their lights in our faces. When I told them we had no money, 
and that I was a teacher, they repeated the word " teacher " 
and disappeared. We were carrying torches, but a storm was 
brewing, and soon a strong blast left us in utter darkness. 
We were then on a strange road in an unknown territory. 
Gusty winds came howling down from the mountains, driving 
sheets of blinding rain. What were we to do ? We could 
not return. To stand still was alike out of the question. On 
we went, creeping along the wet and slippery path, a Canadian 
missionary, a Chinese convert, and a heathen basket-bearer. 
Here we stumbled over boulders, there one slipped into a 
crevice in the rock, and somewhere else we all three staggered 
into the mire of an unfenced rice-field. But underneath and 
round about us were "the everlasting arms." Kelung was 
reached before midnight, and the rest of the night was speiTt 
in a low damp hovel. A Hoa early learned that the path of 
duty in the service of Christ is sometimes rough and sore, as it 
was for Him who first went up to Calvary. 

At Kelung we stood on the stone steps of a large heathen 
temple, sang a hymn or two, and immediately the crowd 


gathered, filling the open space and the street. It was a mob 
of angry idolaters. .Some of them were A Hoa's old atquain- 
tances and companions, and when they saw him stand beside 
the hated "foreign devil" their contempt for the Christian 
missionary was as nothing compared with their feelings" toward 
the Chnstian convert. I turned to A Hoa and invited hiiii to 
address the people. It was a moment of testing. He had 
never before spoken for Christ in the public street. It was 
only a few months since he himself had first heard the gospel. 
He heard the scornful and vile words of his old friends and 
comrades, and when I turned and asked him to speak he was 
silent and hung down his head. Immediately I read the. first 
verse of a hymn, and we sang it together. The words were 
those of the old Scotch paraphrase that has so often ptit iron 
into the blood and courage into the hearts of trembling saints : 

"I'm not ashamed to own my Lord, 
Or to defend his cause ; 
Maintain the glory of his cross, 
And honor all his laws." 

lu was enough. A Hoa raised his head, and never again was 
he " ashamed." Looking out over that angry mob, he said, 
in the calm, clear tones of a man who beheves and is unafraid, 
" I am a Christian. I worship the true God. I cannot wor- 
ship idols that rats can destroy. I am not afraid. I love 
Jesus. He is my Saviour and Friend." His testimony was 
brief, but it was his first, and it was brave and true. It is 
easy for a young man now to take his stand for Christ; there 
*e other converts to cheer and encourage him. But it was 
different then. That word uttered by A Hoa to that crowd 
of rough and bitter heathen before the idol temple in Kelung 
was the first ever spoken for Christ to that generation by a 
native Christian in North Formosa. 

On the second Sabbath in February, 1873, exactly one year 

HS from far FORMOSA 

after my arrival in Tamsui, at the close of service I announced 
that a number were to be admitted by baptism into the Chris- 
tian church. The cry was raised outside, " We will stop him. 
Let us beat the converts." The house was filled, and the 
street in front was crowded. After the singing of a hymn five 
men came forward and made public confession of their faith 
in Christ. Each man spoke in clear, decisive tones. Their 
names were : Giam Chheng Hoa, aged twenty-two, scholar ; 
Go Ek Ju, aged thirty-one, painter; Ong Tiong Sui, aged 
twenty-four, writer ; Lim Giet, aged twenty-six, carpenter ; 
Lim Poe, aged forty-two, farmer. They were then baptized 
into the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy 
Ghost, after which each addressed the people. There were 
many yells, jeers, and taunts, but A Hoa spoke with great 
boldness and effect. 

The next Sabbath these five sat around the Lord's table. 
It was a memorable day for us all. Never before had they wit- 
nessed such a service. Never before had I presided at =uch 
a communion, and when I read the solemn warrant for the ob- 
servance of this sacrament all v/ere visibly affected. Poor Lim 
Giet broke down completely, sobbing out, " I am unworthy, I 
am unworthy ;" and it was only after he had spent some time 
in prayer in the little room that he could be induced to par- 
take of the sacred elements. That first communion marked 
an epoch in A Hoa's spiritual history, and from that day' he 
regarded himself as no more his own, but fully committed to 
Jesus Christ and called to his service. 

But God, who had so strangely led this young man, and 
who was so strangely fitting him for the work of the ministry, 
was at the same time preparing a place for the exercise of his 
gifts and making ready a people to hear his word. Ten miles 
up the river from Tamsui is a country village called Go-ko- 
khi. One day, while I was preaching in our rooms at Tamsui, 
a widow named Thah-so, from that village, attended the ser- 


vice, and at the close came up and said, " I am a poor widow 
living at Go-ko-khi. I have passed through many trials in 
this world, and the idols never gave me any comfort. I like 
the doctrines you proclaim very much, and I believe the God 
you tell about will give me peace. I will come again and 
bring others." Next Lord's day she was there with several 
other women. Week by week the number of her companions 
increased, until at last a boat-load would come down the river 
and enter the preaching-room. So interested were they, and 
so much in earnest, that they persuaded us to visit their village. 
At last A Hoa and I went up the river to Kan-tau, then to 
the right up a smaller stream that ran through fine rice-fields, 
until we reached Go-ko-khi. A number of the villagers met 
us and led the way to the house of Tan Phauh, the head 
man. He was a tall, strongly built, manly looking fellow, and 
when I gave him some commandment sheets he pasted them 
on the walls of his house in the presence of neighbors and 
others ; then, turning to all, he said that he had lost all confi- 
dence in idols, and was determined to live by the ten com- 
mandments now put up. 

I procured an empty rice-granary for a sleepmg-room and 
preaching-place. There we began our work and made our 
headquarters for several months, during which time we 
preached the gospel in the beautiful valleys and villages in 
that vicinity. Tan Phauh, the head man at Go-ko-khi, gave 
a plot of ground opposite his own house for a chapel site. 
Stones were collected, sun-dried bricks prepared, and the 
work of building the first chapel in North Formosa begun. 
There was great interest manifested by the villagers, but when 
the walls were about three feet high a company of soldiers 
and constables sent from the prefect in Bang-kah arrived and 
ordered the work of chapel-building to cease. They were 
armed with guns, spears, and knives, and by beating gongs 
and drums, yelling, threatening, they thought to frighten the 


simple-minded villagers. When they entered the head man's 
house Tan Phauh drew himself up to his full six-feet-two 
and faced them. He was originally a mainland man, who 
had been in several rebellions, and the bluster of a few soldiers 
was nothing to him. Pointing to the commandment sheets on 
the wall, he said, " I am determined to abide by the ten com- 
mandments." The soldiers then made a rush for Widow 
Thah-so's house, but she held up her hymn-book and said she 
was resolved to worship only the true God. Very soon the 
soldiers left the village, saying that the "foreign devil "had 
bewitched the villagers, using some magic art ; and their supe- 
rior officer, the -prefect in Bang-kah, reported the case to the 
British consul, and asked that the missionary be prevented 
from building a fort and taking guns up the river by night. 

But despite all intrigues and plots the Lord's work pros- 
pered in Go-ko-khi, the building was finished, and on opening 
day the room was crowded, while many stood outside. That 
was our first chapel, and there more than one hundred and 
fifty declared their rejection of idols and their desire for Chris- 
tian instruction. It was a great day for us, and that night 
our hearts were full of gratitude because of all that the Lord 
had done. We met in the chapel regularly for instruction and 
worship. Many of those who came were still heathen idol- 
aters, and none of them were accustomed to anything like a 
Christian service or public addresses. Strange indeed are a 
missionary's first experiences. Sometimes when we had sung 
a hymn and I began to address them, one or two would take 
out their pieces of steel, strike a flint, light their long pipes, 
and when the smoke ascended I would pause and remind them 
that they wanted Christian instruction and should keep quiet. 
" Oh yes, yes, we must keep quiet," and with that they would 
nod their heads with great politeness. No sooner would I 
get fairly started again than some one would spring to his feet 
and shout, " Buffaloes in the rice-fields ; buffaloes in the rice- 


fields ! " Another reminder of their duty would bring another 
reply : " Oh yes, yes, we must keep quiet." And for a few 
minutes all do keep quiet and I go on with my address. Then 
an old woman with her little feet hobbles to the door and 
shouts out, " Pig has gone ; pig has gone ; pig I las gone ! " One 
interruption follows another ; but we never blame those resdess 
people, for such services are strange and new to them. Witliin 
two months, however, the congregation assembled in the chapel 
at Go-ko-khi was just as attentive as any I ever addressed 
anywhere in Christendom. 

A Hoa, the first convert, was appointed preacher in the first 
chapel, and chief among his helpers was the first female con- 
vert, Widow Thah-so. She was baptized there three years 
afterward, when sixty-two years of age. A Hoa's natural abil- 
ity, kindness of heart, devotion, and sincerity of purpose gave 
him great influence in Go-ko-khi and the surrounding country. 
Thah-so grew into great beauty and strength of character. 
She continued to the close a firm believer and zealous worker. 
In 1892 she told me that she had one daughter in China, who 
had never heard the gospel. I could see that the old mother's 
heart had been greatly exercised, and that she was " again in 
travail until Christ be formed " in her daughter's soul. A 
passage across the channel was arranged, and Thah-so went 
in search of her child. Her visit was not in vain. After 
remaining with her daughter for several weeks she returned 
home, feehng that her work was done and the time of her de- 
parture at hand. The end came soon. I visited her a day or 
two before her death. For two days she was quiet and silent ; 
then suddenly the familiar voice was heard again in clear, 
strong tones singing a verse of the psalm, " I to the hills will lift 
mine eyes," and one of the hymn, " Forever with the Lord." 
When she came to the line, " My Father's house on high," the 
voice ceased awhile. Then the eyes opened wide, the face 
shone as with a radiant light, and in accents sweeter than any 


sounds of earth the words came : " The golden gate is open. 
The large white sedan-chair is coming for me. Don't keep 
me. Don't call me back. I'm goin£ home." Thus in the 
"white sedan-chair," too fair and beautiful for other eyes 
than hers to see, the strong heroic soul of our first " mother in 
Israel " passed away. Dear old Thah-so! For twenty years 
she served her Lord on earth, and at the last there was given 
her an abundant entrance into the eternal kingdom. 




Christianity a life — Every convert a missionary — Tan He — Chnrchat Sin- 
tiam — Work at Tek-chham — Among the Hak-kas — At Kelung — A 
pugilist — Subduing banditti — Chapel built in a. month — Most beauti- 
ful church in Formosa — At Tsui-tng-kha 

C'HRISTIANITY is not a system of philosophy that may 
be taught, but a life that must be hved. The religion of 
Jesus is distinguished from all other religions in its incarnation. 
Its power is the power of a divme Personality. It is propa- 
gated by personal contact. Christ gives life to men, and 
theri says, "As the Father hath sent me, even so send I you." 
Every Christian is a missionary. He may have been nursed 
in the lap of Christendom and trained in a luxurious religious 
home, or he may have been bom a pagan and "suckled on 
a creed outworn." It matters not. If he has been "bom 
again," and feels the throb of the Christ-life, he is a mission- 
ary sent by the living Christ to touch dead souls to the new- 
ness of life. This primary truth needs heavy emphasis, for 
there is everywhere perpetual danger of its being neglected. 
The far-sweeping purpose of the election of grace is being 
ignored, and the churches are crowded with people whose 
largest thought of salvation is that their own souls shall be 
cared for. Not until Christianity is not only believed, but 
lived, will the churches either at home or in heathen lands 
become the power the Master meant them to be. 







Christianity a life — Every convert a missionary — Tan He —Church at Sin- 
tiam— Work at Tek-chham— Among the Hak-kas— At Kelung— A 
pugilist — Subduing banditti — Chapel built in a. month — Most beauti- 
ful church in Formosa — At Tsui-tng-kha 

C'HRI.STIANITY is not a system of philosophy that may 
be taught, but a life that must be lived. The religion of 
Jesus is distinguished from all other religions in its incarnation. 
Its power is the power of a divme Personality. It is propa- 
gated by personal contact. Christ gives life to men, and 
theri says, " As the Father hath sent me, even so send I you." 
Every Christian is a missionary. He may have been nursed 
in the lap of Christendom and trained in a luxurious religious 
home, or he may have been bom a pagan and "suckled on 
a creed outworn." It matters not. If he has been "bom 
again," and feels the throb of the Christ-life, he is a mission- 
ary sent by the living Christ to touch dead souls to the new- 
ness of life. This primary truth needs heavy emphasis, for 
there is everywhere perpetual danger of its being neglected. 
The far- sweeping purpose of the election of grace is being 
ignored, and the churches are crowded with people whose 
largest thought of salvation is that their own souls shall be 
cared for. Not until Christianity is not only believed, but 
lived, will the churches either at home or in heathen lands 
become the power the Master meant them to be. 



The success of missionary effort in North Formosa is in no 
small measure due -to the inculcation of this primary truth of 
Christian discipleship. Converts are taught that the grace of 
God has been given to them, not for their sakes alone, but in 
order that they may be channels for the communication of 
that grace to others. One of. the most delightful experiences 
in a missionary's life is to observe how eager converts are to 
be of service in helping others out of the darkness of heathen- 
ism from which they have so recently emerged. Looking 
back now and recalling the incidents connected with the estab- 
hshing of churches, it is surprising to note in how many cases 
the way was opened, humanly speaking, not by the mission- 
ary's effort, but by the zeal and Christian enterprise of the 
converts. Some of the most conspicuous and useful workers 
in the mission were found as Andrew found Simon and brought 
him to Jesus. 

One evening in 1873 a young man who had been attending 
our services, and whom I knew, entered rhy house at Tamsui, 
accompanied by a stranger who seemed reticent and bashful. 
The young man introduced his companion, saying, "This 
friend of mine has heard the gospel and is now a believer in 
Jesus Christ. We have talked it over a great deal, and 
he desires further instruction, that he may tell others of the 
Saviour." I had some conversation with the stranger, and 
was impressed by his earnestness and modesty. He was a 
farmer's son, known to several of the converts, and had been 
attending the services, in which he became deeply interested. 
As I came to know him better my confidence increased and 
he was enrolled as a student for the ministry, and one more 
faithful never studied in any college. He is now known as 
the Rev. Tan He, pastor of the church at Sin-tiam. 

Sin-tiam is a compact and busy town nestling at the foot of 
the mountains some eighteen miles inland from Tamsui. A 
man hving there had been at Tamsui and had heard the gos- 


pel. On his return home he reported to his friends, where- 
upon several others came out, followed us in our touring from 
place to place, and at last persuaded us to visit Sin-tiam. 
When we arrived there great crowds were in the town, it being 
a season of feasting the gods. Very few of the people had 
ever seen an Anglo-Saxon, and on all hands the familiar cries, 
" Barbarian ! Fo'-eign devil ! " could be heard. Presently a 
rush was made toward a certain point, and angry voices were 
heard shouting, "The barbarian struck a boy." This was an- 
swered by wild cries from the outskirts of the crowd : " Kill 
him ! Kill the barbarian ; he is not very big ! '" As we were 
some distance from the center of attraction I pressed through 
the crowd until I came to the boy, who had indeed an ugly 
wound on the head, which was bleeding profusely. Having 
the necessary surgical instruments, I dressed the wound and 
bound it with my handkerchief. Now a new cry was raised 
by the crowd: "Ho sim, ho sim!" ("Good heart, good 
heart! "). A few days later an old man was injured by faUing 
upon a heap of stones. One of the students carried him to a 
shelter under a tree, where his suffering was relieved, and 
again the cry, "Good heart, good heart!" was heard. As a 
result the people became friendly, and an old couple gave us 
the use of a room for our services. A congregation was soon 
gathered and a chapel became necessary. One rabid idola- 
tress threatened to smash my head with a stone if we persisted 
in building a chapel ; but the work went on, and the chapel 
of unplastered stones was finished and dedicated to the wor- 
ship of God. 

The present church at Sin-tiam is one of the finest buildings 
in North Formosa, and its situation one of the most pictur- 
esque. The church stands on the rising ground at one end 
of the town, its stone spire being the one conspicuous object 
visible for miles around. A stone wall incloses the church 
property. The Sin-tiam River sweeps round in a wide curve 


a few rods from the door, the space between being covered 
with " stone eggs," carried down by freshets and worn smooth 
by the water. At the back of the church stands a high bluff, 
the slopes of which are covered with verdure. In front, across 
the river, steep hills rise abruptly from the water's edge, ascend- 
ing tier after tier, like a giant stairway, terminating in lofty 
mountain-peaks. Clinging to the slopes are groves of trees, 
feathery grasses, reeds and ferns of every description; the 
moss-covered rocks are festooned with great masses of purple 
morning-glory and trailing vines of pink and white roses ; and 
everywhere blooming myrtle-trees, pure white Easter lilies, and 
the sweet-scented honeysuckle add to the luxuriant beauty of 
the scene. 

What though idols of camphor-wood are enshrined in many 
houses in Sin-tiam ! Here stands the church of Jesus Christ, 
and here are gathered, week after week, more than two hun- 
dred who bow in adoration before the God of all the earth. 
They have endured hardships for the name of Jesus. They 
have been robbed and persecuted, and in the dark waters of 
the swift-flowing river two of the converts faced the death and 
won the crown of martyrs for the faith. 

The congregation worshiping in the beautiful Sin-tiam church 
is now self-sustaining, supporting their pastor, bearing all other 
expenses ; and although by no means wealthy, they contribute 
to the general work of the church in Formosa, help the poor, 
and send voluntary offerings for the rehef of famine-stricken 
districts. Tan He, their faithful and beloved pastor, wields 
a great influence, and is growing in intellectual and spiritual 
strength year by year. 

Tek-chham, a walled city of forty thousand inhabitants, was 
one of the places visited on my first trip down the west coast 
the week after landing at Tamsui in 1872. I had a " prophet's 
chamber " there, and after frequent visits succeeded in renting 
a small house for chapel purposes. No sooner had we got the 


place cleaned out than indignant crowds filled the narrow street, 
jostling, reviling, spitting in our faces. After three days the 
turmoil ceased, largely through the influence of a literary man 
to whom I had given medicine on a previous occasion. With- 
in a month thirty persons enrolled themselves as Christians, 
and larger premises had to be secured. The work grew until 
a still larger building was required. There is now a large 
preaching-hall, with real glass in the front windows ; and there 
a once proud Confucianist graduate is preaching the gospel 
of Christ. In the country round about Tek-chham are many 
Christians, but as the city gates are closed at night they could 
not attend evening service. The Christians in the city con- 
tributed money, and in other ways assisted in securing a suit- 
able building outside the wall, and there another literary man 
is preaching Jesus as the only Saviour. 

Ten miles from Tek-chham, toward the mountains, is a Hak- 
ka village called Geh-bai. To this village we were led by 
several Hak-kas who attended services in the city church. 
The villagers assembled under a beautiful banian-tree, where 
fully a thousand people could find shelter from the broiling 
sun. They were greatly delighted, and one fine old gentleman 
welcomed us to his house for the night, one of the largest and 
cleanest in the island. The old man was genuinely interested, 
and walked many times to Tek-chham to the Sabbath services 
there. That evening a great crowd gathered in the open court 
to hear the new doctrine. One man, seventy years of age, 
exerted himself with such success that a house wa rented, re- 
paired, and fitted up for chapel services. The congregation 
became organized, and when a native preacher was sent among 
them four months of his salary was paid in advance. There 
in that Hak-ka village, high among the' hills, is a flourishing, 
self-helping Christian congregation. 

The church at Kelung was established largely through the 
instrumentality of Ko Chin, a convert who afterward became 


an elder and preacher. He had lived with his family among 
the beautiful green hills around the Kelung harbor. Becom- 
ing filled with the desire for more wealth, he moved to Sek- 
khau and became an extensive cattle-buyer, traveling through 
the whole of North Formosa. He ^as an intense idolater, 
and being something of a musician, became somewhat famous 
as a drummer and guitar-player in idolatrous processions. In 
1872, a few months after I began to preach in Tamsui, he 
came to hear the " barbarian." The following Sabbath he was 
there again. When a chapel was opened nearer his home he 
attended there, walking generally ten miles to be present. In 
Kelung he rented a house and furnished it as a place of "Vor- 
ship. On the appointed day I was escorted to the place to 
conduct the dedicatory services. More than four hundred 
were present. Ko Chin continued regular and faithful, and 
at the age of forty-five was baptized. Finding his business 
lucrative, but a hindrance to Sabbath observance, he gave it 
up, returned to the old homestead, and brought up his entire 
family to worship God. In due time he was ordained an elder 
in the Kelung church, and subsequently became a stu-dent and 
finally a preacher at the Margaret Machar Memorial Church 
on the east coast. During the French invasion in 1884 his 
dwellings at Kelung were destroyed by looters, his property 
was confiscated, and himself and family persecuted. In a 
very literal sense he " took joyfully the spoiling of his goods." 
His services as preacher were blessed of God, and when he 
fell a victim to the malarial fever the elders and deacons of 
his church gathered about his bed and sang the One Hundred 
and Twenty-first Psalm, the first he ever learned. His " going 
out " was kept by the God in whom he put his trust. 

The missionary abroad, like the missionary at home, some- 
times finds the bread cast upon- the waters after many days. 
Back of the Quan-yin Mountain, near Tamsui, is a beautiful 
plateau in which stands a hamlet called I-khut (" Round 


Pool "), where we have a chapel and congregation. The first 
man to show interest in our work there was a pugilist and 
gambler whom I had met shortly after landing in Formosa in 
1872. Going through the valley, I passed a small rice-shop 
where were several gamblers squatted on mats on the floor. I 
entered into conversation with them and asked if their sage 
Confucius would not be displeased with them for their waste 
of time. The majority seemed indifferent, but one became 
very angry. He was a powerfully built man, and had distin- 
guished himself as a pugilist. It was his custom, when he lost 
in gambling, to use physical force in compelling the winner 
to return the money. Everybody — even his own brother — 
dreaded him. He was very angry on the occasion of our first 
meeting, but something of the words spoken remained in his 
memory and touched his conscience. In after-years he fre- 
quently fell in with converts and native preachers, and began 
to take a lively interest in our work. In due time he joined our 
ranks, and with as much energy as he had put into the works 
of sin he entered now on the service of Christ and his church. 
He visited the people in that locality, exhorting them to accept 
Christ, and the result of his enthusiastic efforts was a suitable 
building and a flourishing congregation. 

Twenty years ago the most lawless region in North Formosa 
was round about Sa-kak-eng, a town of two thousand inhabi- 
tants, northeast from Toa-kho-ham. The people lived in 
terror of a large band of ruffians and highwaymen who had 
their headquarters in the mountains near by. The customary 
method of redress — punishing the kindred of such criminals — 
could not be adopted, as the relatives of these banditti lived 
either on the mainland of China or in out-of-the-way places in 
Formosa. They were all the more daring because the towns- 
people sometimes compromised with them, and when it suited 
their purpose joined with them in resisting official investiga- 
tion and interference. The subprefect and retinue narrowly 


escaped death on one occasion, his sedan-chair being pierced 
by spears and lances. The banditti would form a company 
and march into the town, singing boastfully, with a wild kind 

°fy^"' "Lmkhokoa: 

Goan kho soa; " 

which means, " You trust the mandarins ; we trust the moun- 
tains." I had very great difficulty in gaining an entrance into 
Sa-kak-eng, and when the chief of a strong clan gave me a 
room in the rear of his shop there were loud threats of drag- 
ging us to the hills, gagging us, and gouging out oiu" eyes. So 
violent was the opposition that I had to change my quarters 
to the outskirts of the town. The mob often surrounded the 
building, and once when A Hoa and I came out of the door 
a howl was raised, and a large flat stone flung by a man near 
by grazed the top of my head, and, striking against the wall, 
was broken into three pieces. Neither of us flinched, but, 
turning round, I picked up the pieces of stone as mementos of 
the day. One of the pieces weighed three pounds ; another I 
brougnt as a contribution to the museum in Knox College, 
Toronto. Several months afterward, on entering the chapel, I 
saw a man lying on a bench. He rose to his feet, and, bow- 
ing low, said, " Will you forgive me ? " He then confessed 
that he was the man who threw the stone, and that his inten- 
tion was to put an end to my life. For the next three months 
he was with the native preacher every day, and before the 
year closed he passed away rejoicing in the hope of salvation 
through Christ. Sa-kak-eng is quite a changed place. The 
desperadoes have been scattered, their forest retreats cleared 
and cultivated, chapel buildings purchased, prejudices against 
converts and preachers overcome, and every year marks pro- 
gress. On our last visit we were escorted in high honor to the 
next chapel, four miles away, a band of music leading the 


At Pat-li-hun, across the harbor from Tamsui, at the foot of 
the Quan-yin Mountain, stands a solid and handsome chapel 
that was built within one month. Our first place of worship 
there was a banian-tree, our next a fisherman's house, then a 
slender grass-covered structure, and then a building of dried 
mud. This last being destroyed during the troubles with the 
French, we resolved on erecting a more substantial structure. 
On the first day of May the stones for the foundation were 
ungathered on the mountain-side, the lumber and bricks were 
up the Tamsui River at Toa-tiu-tia, the coral for lime was un- 
burned, and the clay undug. The plans were drawn, masons 
and carpenters employed, and the work puslied forward. The 
thermometer stood at times at one hundred and twenty, and 
the blowing sand inflamed our eyes; but on the last day of 
May the work was completed and the chapel ready for occu- 
pation. The walls of sun-dried and burnt brick are two and 
a half feet thick, plastered white on the inner side, finished in 
stucco-work without, and strong as solid masonry, having with- 
stood rain-storms, hurricanes, and earthquakes. 

The most beautiful church in all the mission is at Toa-tiu- 
tia. This town stretches along the Tamsui River about a 
mile from Bang-kah, and almost connected with the new 
walled city of Tai-pak-fu, and is the most progressive place of 
business in North Formosa. The railway-bridge across the 
river is fourteen hundred and sixty-four feet long. All the 
British and other Western merchants have establishments there. 
Our church is a splendid structure of stone, with turrets and 
tower and a capacious auditorium. I have seen that church 
crowded from platform to door with eager and attentive hear- 
ers; and. on October i8, 1891, after preaching to over five 
hundred people from the text, " The Lord is a great God, and 
a great King above all gods," I dispensed the sacrament of 
the Lord's Supper to one hundred and thirty communicants. 
In the congregation there was a stranger, a Corean Christian, 


named Phok I Peng, who was traveling through Formosa in 
search of his brother. So impressed was he by the eagerness 
of the Chinese converts and the heartiness of their worship 
that he said at the close, " This is truly the kingdom of God 
come down to earth. I can never forget this scene. Peace 
to you all." 

Ten miles east of the city of Bang-kah, on the south bank 
of the Kelung River, is a town of foiu" thousand inhabitants, 
called Tsui-tng-kha. In 1890 a new building, costing seven 
hundred dollars (Mexican), was erected there by the native 
Christians. The entire cost of both site and building was paid 
by the churches in Formosa, and the deed of the property is 
stamped in the name of the native church. A Hoa planned 
the building and superintended its erection, and now a native 
preacher is stationed there. 

The conduct of two members of the church at Tsui-tng-kha 
is an answer to the question often asked about the stability of 
Chinese converts. Several years ago a man of the Tan clan 
allowed his eldest son to attend the chapel services to see 
what kind of doctrine was taught. The young man became 
interested and brought two younger brothers. One of the 
members of the church taught them to read the romanized 
colloquial, and they studied the gospel with growing earnest- 
ness, until all three confessed their faith in Jesus Christ. Then 
they refused to worship idols and ancestral tablets in their 
home. This aroused the father's wrath, who, fearing there 
would be no one to worship at his grave, forbade his sons' 
going again to the chapel, and ordered them to attend idola- 
trous ceremonies every night. To pacify their enraged parent 
they resolved to "bow in. the house of Rimmon," but while 
they held the lighted incense-sticks before the idol they turned 
their heads away. But they still attended the chapel serv^ices, 
which when their father found out, he visited the chapel se- 
cretly ; and when he saw his sons singing praise to Jehovah-God 


he shrieked and ran about like one mad. After this they met 
together on the Sabbath in some quiet place in the mountains, 
and sang, prayed, and read the Word, praying most of all for 
their angry father. Then they would meet at night in a grass 
watch-house among the rice-fields. But nowhere were they 
long unmolested. Their father's anger became more cruel 
and watchful. At the close of the year preparations were 
being made for the customary idol festival. They refused to 
take part in the ceremonies. He became wild with rage, and, 
seizing a long knife, rushed at the eldest son. They all escaped 
and found refuge in a convert's house. The father would not 
be appeased, and drove his daughters-in-law, with their Jittle 
children, out of the house. Neither the sons nor their wives 
dared come near the place. Then the mother's heart relented. 
She could not give up her children, and after much pleading 
the father gave her the knife and promised not to injure the 
sons should they return. They did return. The father for- 
gave them, and they were permitted to worship God in the 
home ; and on every Lord's day, with their wives and children, 
they ioined in the services in the chapel at Tsui-tng-kha. 



The stronghold — Waiting an opportunity — Forbidden — Expelled — Back 
again — M obbed — V ictorious — Changes — H onored 

BANG-KAH was the Gibraltar of heathenism in Noith For- 
mosa. It is the largest and most important city, thoroughly 
Chinese, and intensely anti-foreign in all its interests and sym- 
pathies. In 1872 I visited it with A Hoa and got a foretaste 
of the reception awaiting me on ever)' subsequent occasion. 
In my journal of 1875 I find the following entry, made after 
having experienced anew the malignant hate of the Bang-kah 
people : 

" The citizens of Bang-kah, old and young, are daily toiling 
for money, money — cash, cash. They are materialistic, super- 
stitious dollar-seekers. At every visit, when passing through 
their streets, we are maligned, jeered at, and abused. Hun- 
dreds of children run ahead, yelling with derisive shouts; 
others follow, pelting us with orange-peel, mud, and rotten 
eggs. For hatred to foreigners, for pride, swaggering igno- 
rance, and conceit, for superstitious, sensual, haughty, double- 
faced wickedness, Bang-kah takes the palm. But remember, 
O haughty city, even these eyes will yet see thee humble in 
the dust. Thou art mighty now, proud, and full of malice; 
but thy power shall fall, and thou shalt be brought low. Thy 
filthy streets are indicative of thy moral rottenness ; thy low 
houses show thy baseness in the face of heaven. Repent, O 



Bang-kah, thou wicked city, or the trumpet shall blow and thy 
tears be in vain!" 

We had previously established churches north, south, east, 
and west of Bang-kah. She sent hirelings to surrounding 
villages and towns to repriraand the magistrates, incite the 
people, and frustrate us in the execution of our work. Three 
large clans, through their "head men, ruled the city. All the 
others had to acquiesce in every proposal. Foreign merchants 
never succeeded in estabhshing themselves there. Attempts 
were made, but their Chinese agents were dragged out of the 
city and narrowly escaped death. It might seem that mission 
work should have been begun in Bang-kah first. Indeed, I 
received a communication from a very devoted and excellent 
missionary in China — one who has now gone to his reward — 
in which he said, " I hear you have stations in several towns 
and villages. Why don't you begin at Jerusalem? " Now I 
did not begin at the " Jerusalem " of heathenism for the same 
reason that I did not go to Madagascar or to India. I sought 
to follow the lead of my Captain. He led me 'to Formosa, 
and to point after point where chapels were already opened. I 
knew the time would come when Bang-kah would be entered. 

The authorities of Bang-kah issued proclamations calling on 
all citizens, on pain of imprisonment or death, not to rent, 
lease, or sejl either houses or other property to the barbarian 
missionary. But in December, 1877, the time came for estab- 
lishing a mission there, and in spite of all their attempts to 
prevent oxu* entrance I succeeded in renting a low hovel on 
the eastern side. On getting possession I placed a tablet of 
paper on a wooden frame above the door, with the inscription, 
"Jesus' Holy Temple." Shortly afterward several soldiers 
who were returning to their encampment near by came, stood, 
looked up, read the inscription, and immediately threatened 
me with violence. Then they returned to their encampment 
and reported to the general, who despatched a number of 


officers to order me out of the place, stating that the site be- 
longed to the military authorities. I demanded proof of their 
statement. It was produced, and it was at once evident that 
I could not maintain my position there. We must respect 
Chinese law and act wisely if we would successfully carry on 
the Lord's work, and so I at once admitted their claim, but 
stated that, as I had rented from a citizen, I would not leave 
that night. Till long past midnight angry soldiers paraded 
the streets, shouting threatening words. At times they were 
at the door, on the point of smashing it, rushing in, and dis- 
posing of me with their weapons. Again and again they ap- 
proached, and it seemed in that dark, damp place as if my end 
were at hand. On leaving the place in the morning great 
crowds went in front ; others followed after, jostling and sneer- 
ing ; and many viewed me from their low-roofed houses and 
flung filth and missiles down at me. It took me several hours 
to make my way a short distance to the river's bank. Enter- 
ing a boat, I went down the river to the Toa-liong-pong 
chapel, three miles away, to find my students. We spent the 
rest of the day there, and in the evening, after preaching in 
the chapel, we entered the little room and prayed to the God 
of heaven to give us an entrance into the city of Bang-kah. 
Rising from prayer, we returned immediately to the city. It 
was dark, but some lights were visible. Not knowing exactly 
whither we were going, we met an old man, and inquired if 
he knew any one who would rent even a small house for mis- 
sion work. "Yes," he replied, "I will rent you mine." We 
accompanied him., and, passing through dark streets and over 
rubbish, came to a small back door opening into a dirty room 
with mud-floor. We entered and began to write a rental 
paper. The house had to be rented by a. native, for foreigners 
cannot hold property away from the treaty ports. To be par- 
ticular I said, "Do you own the site?" "Oh no," said he, 
"but X can secure the owner this very night." In half an 


hour the owner was with us, another paper prepared, and both 
contracts signed and stamped. I was in full possession, and 
that according to Chinese law, by midnight. . He gave us 
possession at once, crept out a back way, and disappeared. 

In the morning I put up a tablet over the door with the 
same inscription as before: "Jesus' Holy Temple." In less 
than an hour crowc . filled the street, and the open space in 
front of a large temple was thronged with angry citizens. 
People came and went the whole day long. The second day 
the whole city was in an uproar, and the hubbub produced 
by their thousand voices fell very unpleasantly upon our ears. 
Still I walked the street among them, now and again extracting 
teeth, for we had friends even among so many enemies.- -On 
the third day lepers and beggars and other lewd fellows, hired 
to molest us, pressed around with their swollen ears and dis- 
gusting-looking features. They tried to rub against us, expect- 
ing us soon to quit the premises. About four or five o'clock 
the excitement grew to a white heat. Hundreds had their 
cues tied around their necks, and blue cloth about their loins, 
to signify that they were ready for the fray. One stooped 
down, picked up a stone, and hiu-led it against the building. 
In a moment their screams were deafening. They were on 
the roof, within and without, and the house was Uterally torn 
to pieces and carried away. No material was left. They 
actually dug up the stones of the foundation with their hands, 
and stood spitting on the site. We moved right across the 
street into an inn. No sooner had we done this than scores 
were on the roof and many more climbing the walls. The 
crash of tiles could be heard as they attempted to force an 
entrance. By this time, the shouts and yells were inhuman. 
One who has never heard the fiendish yells of a murderous 
Chinese mob can have no conception of their hideousness. 
The innkeeper came to us with the key of the door in his hand 
and begged us to leave, lest his house be destroyed, 


Then there was a lull. The Chinese mandarin, in his large 
sedan-chair, with his body-guard around him, and with soldiers 
following, was at the door. Just then, too, her Britannic Maj- 
esty's consul at Tamsui, Mr. Scott, put in an appearance. We 
sat down together. The Chinese official told the consul to 
order the missionary away from the city. The consul quickly 
retorted, " I have no authority to give such an order ; on the 
other hand, you must protect him as a British subject." I 
love British officials of that caliber. When the consul left I 
accompanied him to the outskirts of the city; On my return 
the mandarin was literally on his knees beseeching me to leave 
the city. I showed him my forceps and my Bible, and told 
him I would not quit the city, but would extract teeth and 
preach the gospel. He went away very much chagrined, but 
left a squad of soldiers to guard the place. In two or three 
days the excitement subsided. In a week I was offered a site 
outside the city, and the promise of help from the Chinese 
authorities to erect a building there. I refused point-blank. 
As I was lawfully in possession of the site as well as of the 
building which had been destroyed, I was determined to have 
ovir mission' building in Bang-kah, and on that spot. The 
officials then said that I would not be allowed to build in that 
place again because it was within only a few feet of the exam- 
ination hall, although, in fact, the hall was, a mile and a half 
away. Having exhausted their whole stock of excuses and 
subterfuges, they yielded. I erected a small building on the 
original site — not one inch one way or another — and opened 
it, with soldiers parading the street to preserve the peace. Still 
the three strong clans continued to be bitterly opposed to us 
and our work. Every citizen who dared to become even a 
hearer was boycotted. The former owner of the site had to 
flee for his life. In time a few became friendly. We pur- 
chased a larger site and erected a good, commodious place of 
worship, roofed with tiles. During the French invasion in 


1884 that building was destrayed by the looters, the materials 
carried away, and indignities heaped upon the preacher and 
converts. Within three months after the cessation of French 
hostilities three stone churches were erected. One of these was 
in Bang-kah. It is a solid, handsome, substantial church, with 
stone spire seventy feet high, and lightning-rod three feet 
higher. It is of stone hewn at the quarry ; has pillars and 
turrets of modern style ; the • inside is plastered beautifully 
white, the outside finished in stucco-plaster like colored stone- 
work. There are rooms for the preacher, and an upper room 
— the only one in the mission — for the missionary. 

In 1879 six students and I, on foot, and my wife in a sedan- 
chair, were going through one of the streets after dark on our 
way to the chapel. It was the tenth day of a heathen feast, 
and the idolatrous procession was about to disband, so that 
the devotee^ were wrought up to the highest pitch of fury and 
agitation. There were thousands of them in the procession, 
leaping and yelling as if under the afiflatus of evil spirits. We 
were recognized. The/e was a pause, and a torch was thrust 
into the face of my wife in the chair, nearly destroying her 
eyes. A dozen dragged two students by their cues, while 
others were tumbling a third on the stone pavement. Wilder 
and wilder grew the infuriated mob. Louder and louder 
sounded their gongs and yells. Things looked dangerous, 
when an old man from a house right there rushed up and said, 
" This is Kai Bok-su, the barbarian teacher. Do not interfere 
with him or his company. Take my advice and go on in your 
procession." Fortunately there was a narrow lane at right 
angles to the street where we met the processionists. Into this 
he hurried us out of danger. We went directly to the chapel, 
where I preached on the words of the psalm, " As the moun- 
tain, are round about Jerusalem, so the Lord is round about 
his people from henceforth even forever." 

Changes have taken place in that once proud city. In 1887 


I was there during the time of idolatrous rites and processions. 
Perhaps there never was such a gathering of people in that 
city before. A Hoa and myself took our position purposely 
at various places near the temple, on the cross-streets, by the 
wayside, and on the wall of the new city. Once we were 
right above the gateway through which the processionists 
passed, but we were neither molested nor slandered. They 
went along with smiling faces. That very evening we sat in 
front of the large temple where years before the mob met to 
kill us. The same Bang-kah head men were in the procession, 
and as they came near us they halted and greeted us kindly. 
Before dark I extracted five hundred and thirteen teeth and 
addressed an immense throng. But what a change! Who 
ever dreamed of such a change! I never witnessed such a 
half-hearted, listless procession. By removing an idol or two 
the whole performance would have amounted to httle more 
than a sight-seeing farce. But idolatry is far from being dead 
yet. There is indeed a great change, but hard battles must 
yet be fought before heathen hearts will yield to Jesus and 
follow him. 

But it was on the eve of our departure to Canada in 1893 
that Bang-kah gave evidence of the greatness of the change 
produced in that city. In the chapel, on the occasion of our 
last visit, two marriage ceremonies were performed in the pres- 
ence of a large assembly. The head men of the city sent their 
visiting-cards, with a message to ask if I would be willing to 
sit in a sedan-chair and be carried in honor through the streets 
of their city. I begged some time to consider, and decided 
that, as in the past they had acted toward us as they chose, so 
now I would allow them to do the same. A procession was 
formed on the same level ground, near the same old temple. 
Eight bands of music, with cymbals, drums, gongs, pipes, gui- 
tars, mandolins, tambourines, and clarionets, took the lead. 
Men and boys with flags, streamers, and banners followed ; 


scores with squibs and fire-crackers set off after the manner of 
Chinese celebrations. Five head men, a magistrate, a military- 
official, and two civil officials came next in order; and then 
three large red " umbrellas of honor," with three flounces each, 
presented by the people, with their names inscribed, were car- 
ried in front of me, as I sat in a handsome silk-lined sedan- 
chair. Following the chair were six men on horseback, twenty- 
six sedan-chairs, three hundred footmen in regular order, and 
various other parties behind. Thus we passed through the 
streets of Bang-kah, and on all hands received tokens of re- 
spect and honor. 

On arriving at Bang-kah "jetty," where the steam-launch 
was waiting, our Christians stood and sang, " I'm not ashamed 
to own my Lord." Heathen and Christian alike cheered us 
as we boarded the launch. Two bands of music accompanied 
us all the way to Tamsui, and from the launch right up to our 
dwelling-house. In front of our door was the climax of the 
demonstration. And all this was from the head men and citi- 
zens of Bang-kah, the erstwhile Gibraltar of heathenism. And 
thus was Bang-kah taken. Not unto us, O Lord, not unto us, 
but unto thy holy name, be the glory! 



Traveling on foot — " Perils of waters " — Sedan-chair — Rickshaw — Rail- 
way — Struggling with a donkey — Change and incident — With a hill- 
man — An old Confucianist — Doomed savages — Among pioneers — A 
manof faith — At Lam-kham — An opium-smoker — Pleasant memories 

THE headquarters of the mission in North Formosa are at 
Tamsui, and from that point tours are frequently made, 
visiting the churches in order and exploring the regions beyond. 
This is a most important part of the missionary's work. Re- 
sponsibiHty is put upon the native preachers settled at the vari- 
ous chapels, but oversight is required in matters of organization 
and administration. These periodical visits are encouraging 
to the preachers and stimulating to the members. In making 
tours of the churches I never travel alone, but always with a 
company of students, who are in this way introduced to the 
work and become acquainted with missionary methods. 

There are many modes of traveling, the chief of which is 
traveling on foot. It is often dangerous and always wearisome. 
The paths are so rough — now over mountains, now across hot, 
blowing sands, now through jungle — and the mountain torrents, 
especially during the rainy season, are so numerous and diffi- 
cult to cross, that there is little physical enjoyment. Sometimes 
the traveler is carried across the stream on the shoulders of a 
coolie. Generally we wade the streams, going in pairs, hand 
in hand, holding in the disengaged hand a long bamboo pole 
with which to feel the way. On one occasion Lien Ho, one 



of the preachers, was nearly drowned. His companion shpped 
and fell, and losing his hold, he was swept down by the cur- 
rent, tumbling over and over in the seething waters, until at 
a sharp curve in the stream he was rescued by two of the stu- 
dents who were on shore. At some points there are ferry-boats, 
and by holding on to a rattan stretched across the stream and 
spiked to trees at either end, the boatmen cross with ease and 
safety. Sometimes the boats are abandoned by their owners 
and left on the rocks. Once we came to a broad, rapid stream 
and saw a boat on the opposite shore. The boatman was no- 
where to be seen, and no answer came to our calls. At last 
two of our students swam across and fastened the end of a long 
rope to the boat, by which it was hauled to our side. Several 
volunteered to be oarsmen, and when we had all crouched on 
the bottom they shoved out from shore. But they were power- 
less in such a current. In spite of all their efforts the boat was 
carried down the stream and dashed to pieces on the stones 
of a dam a short distance below. Beyond a few bruises and a 
thorough wetting we were none the worse. We never thought 
of kindling a fire to dry our clothes, for we knew that another 
stream and another had to be crossed, and a similar experience 
might await us at each. Travelers are not always in " perils of 
waters," for during fine weather in some districts the toads are 
good and the streams bridged or easily forded ; but in other 
parts and at other seasons an unexpected bath is of frequent 

On most of the larger rivers are numerous boats which carry 
passengers up or down stream. These boats are made of 
camphor-wood planks, wide, flat-bottomed, and light. They 
are built to run the rapids, and are called "rapid boats." 
Going downstream the steersman stands in the bow with a long 
oar, and the trip is generally pleasant. The trip upstream is 
very tedious ; the boatmen, wading through the water, grasp- 
ing a pole tied across the bow, haul the boat slowly along. 


The sedan-chair is another vehicle of travel. It is carried 
by two or four coolies, who can go twenty miles a day. The 
sedan-chair is sometimes a necessity ; but to sit cooped up in 
such a box is to any foreigner who loves scenery and fresh air 
a great discomfort. 

The rickshaw, a light covered gig drawn by a coolie, is very 
common, especially on the roads connecting Bang-kah, Toa- 
tiu-tia, and Tai-pe-fu. These cities are situated at the points 
of a triangle, each about three miles from the others ; and the 
roads between are wide and good, having been built by that 
energetic and progressive governor, Liu Ming Chuan. About 
one hundred and fifty rickshaws run on these roads every day. 
An effort was made to establish a line of English carriages, but 
had to be abandoned because the horses could not compete 
with the coolies. 

A line of railway runs between Kelung and Tek-chham, about 
fifty miles. The engines are all made in Germany or England, 
and the cars are fitted up in English style. The road is now 
owned and operated entirely by Chinese. 

I am sometimes asked why we do not use a pony or donkey 
in traveling. I tried the donkey once, and am not enthusi- 
astic over the experiment. There were no stables at the inns 
or chapels, and no provision for caring for the animal. And 
in the matter of time nothing was gained, as a coolie had to be 
employed to carry necessary food and clothing, and the time 
made by the donkey was lost by the coolie. The donkey was 
a present from the commissioner of customs, who was retiring 
from the island. We called him " Lu-a," and the students had 
considerable sport with him at Tamsui. One day we planned 
a trip to a chapel five miles away. Lu-a was brought to the 
door for my use, and as it was a great occasion I mounted 
and led the way. The students followed, greatly enjoying the 
sight of a foreign missionary astride a donkey. All went well, 
however, until we came to a narrow plank bridge crossing a 


ravine twelve or fifteen feet deep. The bridge was not more 
than three feet wide, and when Lu-a came he halted suddenly, 
planted his fore feet well forward, and set his ears back in a 
settled sort of way. Coaxing and urging both failed. I then 
dismounted and began to pull. The students took in the situa- 
tion and thought to assist by pushing, one of them taking hold 
of Lu-a's rat-tail. But it was all in vain. Lu-a was " estab- 
lished." A consultation was then held and various plans dis- 
cussed. Thinking that the donkey might have changed his 
opinion, I made another effort, and seizing the halter, began to 
pull with all my might. But he braced himself all the more 
firmly with his fore feet, and then began to kick. This had the 
effect of scattering the students in the rear, but I kept pulling 
in front. Lu-a then opened his mouth and brayed, making 
sounds such as the students never heard before, and as only a 
sulky donkey can make. The whole performance was so novel, 
and the donkey's heels went with such rapidity, that the stu- 
dents, shouting "Cheng-bi, cheng-bi!" ("He's pounding rice, 
he's pounding rice!"), lay down on the ground and laughed 
themselves nearly sick. But Lu-a conquered ; and what made 
our defeat all the more humiliating was that one of us could 
almost have carried him across, he was so small, and that we 
lost an hour and a half of valuable time in the contest. Since 
then I have not experimented in this kind of locomotion. 

Our experiences in traveling are never monotonous, as there 
is always change and incident enough to give interest ; but to 
readers of the record one trip would appear much like another. 
Sometimes we take the chapels along the much-traveled pub- 
lic road, at other times the scattered savage villages, and at 
others the less frequented paths inland from the sea, where the 
Chinese pioneers are subduing nature's wildness and opening 
the way for the advancing settlements. In 1890 we traversed 
the entire length of the field from north to south without once 
approaching the public road. The narrow paths along which 


we went skirted and climbed the rugged mountains and wound 
through scenery of extraordinary beauty. The Chinese gen- 
erally have but feeble sense of the sublime, and it was gratify- 
ing to observe the Chinese students gazing wonder and 
admiration upon the picturesque scenery through which we 
passed. The truth of God had opened their eyes and touched 
to life their dormant senses. 

We were accompanied on that occasion by a hillman, sev- 
enty-four years of age, who was my traveling-companion. He 
had nerves of steel and muscles of iron, and it was a pleasure 
to walk with one who had such powers of endurance. The 
others of our party were often far in the rear, and we had to 
sound an occasional hallo for their encouragement and gui- 
dance. After traveling a long distance in this way my com- 
panion began to show signs of fatigue, and at last, when we 
came to a large flat stone at the top of a particularly difficult 
piece of climbing, he sat down, perspiring and puffing, and said 
in a beseeching tone, " We move too fast." 

As we walked along, this hillman spoke a great deal about 
the folly of idolatry, and oiTered me his god of the north pole, 
god of the kitchen, and god of war, before which he had been 
bowing himself for seventy long years. This offer was made 
good, and on our return we carried them with us as a contri- 
bution to my museum at Tamsui. 

On the arrival of oiu: party we set out again, all moving to- 
gether. Our guide knew the way, and taking the lead, he 
rushed on ahead to a village near by to advise a school-teacher 
of our coming. We were welcomed at the school-room by the 
teacher, a particularly fine literary gentleman. Looking about 
the room, I was a little svurprised to find on his table a copy 
of the Old Testament, a hymn-book, and a New Testament 
Catechism. He caught my glance, and laying his hand on 
the Bible, said, " Here I find what I longed to know. Tliis 
Book tells me how this world was made." And he went on to 


speak of the delight and profit he found in studying the story 
of creation. The native preacher, himself one of the literary 
class, had given this teacher the Book, and as it was the open- 
ing chapters of Genesis that first arrested his own attention, he 
directed the mind of his inquiring friend to the same portion. 
The teacher became interested, and soon the new light began 
to dawn. There was a chapel not far from the school, and on 
the night we held service there he was present. During my 
address he would give expression to his consent and approval 
in emphatic exclamations, hke the " Amen " of an old-time 
camp-meeting. At the close he rose and addressed the assem- 
bly : " I am sixty-four years of age, and have taught school for 
twenty-three years. I heard the gospel from the lips of the 
native preacher who is here to-night. He came to my school- 
room more than ten times. I believe this new doctrine with 
all my heart. It is good. I was a Confucianist, but Confu- 
cianism did not satisfy my soul. I read in the Bible how God 
created the heaven and the earth. I read, too, of eternal' life 
after death. These things impressed me deeply. I kept pon- 
dering on them even in my school. Then an old friend came 
and brought Kai Bok-su, the foreign missionary. My old friend 
I found to be a Christian, and though he is over seventy years 
of age he is young again. He has fellowship with God. I 
have come now to understand. For m.any years I have not 
believed in idols. Now I am satisfied, and before all here I 
declare myself a believer in God and in Jesus. The gospel 
is good news to an old man like me." There was profound 
silence all the time, for this old disciple of Confucius was re- 
spected by all. His words were earnest, for in them was the 
reviving hope of an old man's life. 

At Toa-kho-ham, a town near the mountains, we saw twenty- 
four savages imprisoned and condemned to punishment for the 
death of several Chinese camphor-workers in the border-land, 
whose heads were taken by the head-hunters of the tribe. The 


^ prisoners were secured with chains about their legs. Their 
tattooed women strolled about, unfettered and unconcerned, 
as if careless about the fate of their braves. But there was 
sympathy in their hearts, and although they loved the freedom 
of their forest retreats, that "touch of nature," love for their 
husbands and sons, bound them by invisible cords to the place 
of their imprisonment. 

Our next night was spent at a village of Hak-ka Chinese, 
where we had to defend ourselves against the lances of the 
most blood-thirsty mosquitoes I ever encountered. They were 
regular warriors, and a smudge of weeds was but poor protec- 
tion. Foreigners in Formosa invariably carry mosquito-cur- 
tains, but touring through inland settlements must be done 
without such luxuries. 

At a chapel among the hillmen we were given a reception 
that, whatever might be said of its style, lacked nothing in the 
matter of heartiness. Guns and fire-crackers sounded out 
their glad welcome. A sumptuous feast of fowl and fish was 
prepared at the chapel, and the building was filled the entire 
day. Three hours were spent in listening to their recitations 
of psalms, hymns, and Bible selections, some in the Hak-ka 
dialect and others in the Hok-lo. Away yonder among the 
rugged hills a beacon-light is glowing, and those weary pio- 
neers are finding their way back to God. 

On oxir way toward the sea the first man to greet us was 
one who had been blind, but whose sight was restored. He 
had been treated some time previously, but when he caught 
sight of me that day, he rushed up, his eyes wide open, and 
exclaimed, " God did it ; God did it ! I can see now. God 
did it without medicine." Advocates of faith-cure might add 
this man to their number and regard his case as an unanswer 
able argument. There was faith and prayer, but there was 
work as well. The man had been suffering from anemia and 
granular ophthalmia. The treatment prescribed was for the 


toning up of his system, and a wash was prepared for his eyes. 
Reckless hving was strictly forbidden and hygienic regulations 
enforced. Under the care of the native preacher he had 
made slow but svire progress, until his health was restored and 
his sight became clearer. When the supply of medicine was 
exhausted he no doubt prayed more earnesdy and lived more 
consistently, and he thought that as his eyesight was restored 
when he was not taking drugs, his cure was exceptional and 
miraculous. " God did it," was his testimony, which, indeed, 
was true ; but means were suited to ends, as must always be 
done if we would be blessed of God. 

On returning from an inland torn: we sought refuge for the 
night at Lam-kham, a day's jomney southwest from Tamsui. 
There was no public inn, and no one would give us lodgings. 
We found a deserted cart-shed, in which we took shelter. A 
young man who was baptized at our first country station lived 
in that neighborhood, and when he found us out escorted us 
to his home. One evening a place was prepared and arrange- 
ments made for a service. I preached the gospel to the peo- 
ple, and set on the table eight idols which had been surren- 
dered by their devotees. There is at Lam-kham a gnarled 
banian-tree twenty-five feet in circumference, said to have 
been planted by Koxinga. It is supposed to have in it the 
spirit of one of Koxinga's followers, and is reverenced, if not 
worshiped, by many of the people. 

On my next visit to that place a man fifty-eight years of age 
came up and expressed great interest in us and our work. He 
followed us to Tamsui for the express purpose of overcoming 
the opium habit, which was fast ruining him. The pipe was 
placed in my museum, and then the struggle began. It was 
terrible beyond description. Those who have never experi- 
enced it cannot understand the power of the habit. When the 
craving came on, his body writhed in agony. Remedial mea- 
sures were adopted, and by Christian fellowship and divine 


grace he held on, going from strength to strength, until the vic- 
tory was won. He told me that it was he who, as head man 
of the village, led the people of Lam-kham in their opposition 
to us and in refusing us shelter. He spoke afterward at many 
of our large gatherings, and always made three points promi- 
nent: first, that he had been an opium-smoker and had been 
cured ; second, that he had resisted our entrance and vihfied 
us at Lam-kham ; third, that he was now a follower of Jesus 
Christ, and by his grace feared neither men nor devils. He 
went back to his home and led his friends in constructing a 
thatched building for chapel purposes.. After this building 
was destroyed by a typhoon a substantial and comfortable hall, 
roofed with tiles,^was erected, at a cost of one hundred and 
fifty-six Mexican dollars, one hundred and twenty-six of which 
were given by the poor peasants themselves. Two poor old 
women, who walked four miles every Sabbath to attend the 
services, brought two fowls each as an offering. These were 
sold, and with the price five hundred tiles were ptu-chased for 
the new chapel. 

Looking over my jovu-nals, I find the record of many trips 
made in all directions. There are many brief entries of ser- 
vices held, churches opened, and sacraments dispensed. There 
is mention of interesting cases and encom-aging experiences. 
The fidelity and affection of my students are recalled by inci- 
dents recorded. The joiu-nal of one trip of forty-six days, 
made with the Rev. Tan He, in the autumn of 1888, is crowded 
with interest. There were hardships, exposure, perils, and dis- 
appointment ; but a glance at the record recalls not these things. 
To a stranger all would be meaningless, but to me the very 
names of the places awaken pleasant memories. There were 
Lun-a-teng, Toa-tiu-tia, Tho-a-hng, Ang-mng-kang, Au-lang, 
Lai-sia, Tiong-kang, and Tek-chham. As I write these names 
there rises before my inner vision picture after picture of eager 
congregations assembled in pleasant chapels, singing praise to 

Dr. MacKay and Students Descending a Mountain. 


Jehovah- God, of whom until a few years ago they had never 
heard, listening with appreciative attention to the gospel mes- 
sage, sitting down together at the holy table and commemo- 
rating the dying love of the Man of Calvary, and coming with 
their little children, . in response to Christ's gracious invitation, 
and covenanting in the ordinance of baptism to bring up their 
children " in the nurture and admonition of the Lord " ; and 
then their heart-felt good-bys as we left them one by one, to 
preach the gospel and establish the church of Christ at other 
stations. It is easy to name over the chapels and to reckon 
up the statistics ; and for all .these marvelous tokens of God's 
blessing we are humbled into gratitude. But the real story can- 
not thus be told. It is not written in the records of ink, but 
in hearts that have learned to love the Saviour — hundreds of 
them now before him in the glory, hundreds more loyally serv- 
ing him in the church upon earth. They are Aur epistles, and 
in their hearts and lives is written the record of our tours in 
North Formosa. 



The prophecy of the isles — Visiting Steep Island — On Pinnacle Island — 
Sea-birds' island home — Agincourt Island — An old fort — Present- 
day inhabitants — A tragedy — Adrift — Our last visit — Agincourt's 

THE isles shall wait for His law! That Old Testament 
prophecy has been, an inspiration in my Uf e. I have seen 
it fulfilled in Formosa. It has been fulfilled in the archipelago 
of the South Sea. The islands of the frozen north will yet 
sound his praises. It is not a poetic fancy. It is not a base- 
less dream. He has spoken it whose words are sure. When 
the continents shall have turned unto the Lord, and when their 
kings shall have come to the brightness of his kingdom, surely 
the waiting isles shall "fly as a cloud, and as doves to their 

When Formosa had heard the gospel our eyes began. to look 
longingly east and north toward the lonely little islands beyond 
the blue horizon-line. Off the northeast coast a few hours' sail 
is Steep Island. We talked much about it because A Hoa's 
mother was bom there, and because upward of three hundred 
Chinese dwelt there, many of whom had never heard the gos- 
pel. Passage for myself and several of the students on board 
a junk loaded with planks was engaged from Tamsui. We set 
out, but the winds were contrary, and after two days of tossing 
and seasickness we rounded the northern point of Formosa 



and ran into Kim-pau-li, on the northeast. Here we got water 
and food, for our supply was well-nigh exhausted. Setting sail 
again, we were driven far out of our course, first eastward and 
then to the north. For five days and nights we were carried 
hither and thither by the merciless waves. On the fifth day, 
scarcely knowing where we were, having been driven back over 
our track, we sighted land. What was our delight when we 
found that we were on the lee side of Steep Island, and right 
grateful were we for the welcome of the islanders. 

The Chinese call Steep Island Ku-soa (" Turtle Mountain "), 
and from certain points of view the island does resemble a huge 
turtle standing on guard with head erect. One side is almost 
perpendicular, fully twelve hundred feet high. The, rock for- 
mation is a laminated kind of slate, argillaceous sandstone, 
and igneous rocks. On sailing around the island we noticed 
sulphur steam ascending its sides, and near the sea-line were 
whitish cinders and hot water. The whole is evidently an ooz- 
ing, seething mass of sulphur. 

The inhabitants are nearly all fishermen. They grow on the 
island sweet potatoes, Indian com, and several kinds of vege- 
tables. There is only one village, and on the occasion of our 
visit the people were suffering from the effects of a fire which 
left forty families homeless. Near the village there is a natural 
pond, with no visible outlet, but having some underground com- 
munication with the sea. At low tide the water is fresh, but 
at high tide it is brackish. During certain seasons himdreds of 
wild ducks make this pond their rendezvous. The only spring 
of fresh water sends a stream trickling down an irregular ledge 
into the pond. Near it stands a sohtary ebony-tree, the last, 
no doubt, of a numerous family. 

The poor people were very hearty in their welcome, and 
gave us the best of what little they had. They brought their 
sick and suffering, and we sought to give them relief. With 
glad hearts they listened to the gospe message, and their dcs- 


titution gave point and pathos to their pleading for a native 
preacher. When vit. left them the whole village accompanied 
us to the shore, and with many words of gratitude, and begging 
us to return, they watched us sail out of their life again. Five 
hours in an open boat rowed by a crew of their stalwart fish- 
ermen against a heavy sea, and we were landed on the shore 
of Formosa opposite Steep Island, and near to one of our 
chapels, where we found rest and food. 

Away to the northeast of Formosa, more than a hundred 
miles from Kelung, are three islands, called Pinnacle, Craig, 
and Agincourt. The Chinese names. Flower-pot, Bird, and 
Large, are descriptive and smgularly appropriate. These 
islands belong to Formosa, but are self-governing and practi- 
cally independent. . 

Pinnacle Island is an irregular bare rock, upon which noth- 
ing grows and where no land animal could live. It stands one 
hundred and seventy feet out of the water, and serves only as 
a resting-place for sea-birds wearied with their long flight. 

Craig is also unfit for man's abode, but was siu^ely heaved 
up to be the home of the seafaring birds that gather there in 
flocks that at times literally darken the sky. On one side the 
island is a rugged and perpendicular wall of rock two hundred 
feet high. From that side it slopes down to the water's edge, 
forming a surface of two or three acres, which is smooth, with- 
out trees or shrubs, but completely covered with soft grass, in 
which the birds lay their eggs without making any kind of nest. 
I discovered twelve different kinds of grasses, but no flowers. 
Insects, including the dreaded centipede and several species 
of beetle, abounded. But the characteristic of the island is its 
bird-life. Gulls and terns gather there in millions. As they 
return homeward they hover over the island for a little, and 
then settle down like a wide-spreading mantle of wings. The 
whole sloping surface is covered, and the sight is worth the 
voyage to see. But the cruelty of man destroyed fpr us the 


beauty of the scene. On one occasion while we camped there 
a dozen or a score of men came from Agincourt to gather the 
eggs, and their large baskets were soon filled. When the birds 
came home in the evening and settled down in the grass, the 
men, carrying lighted torches, caught them alive and crammed 
them into large sacks. They were then taken to a large stone 
near which a fire was kindled, and there, one by one, they were 
dashed to death and piled in heaps several feet high. The 
sight and the wailing screams of the poor birds were sickening. 
In the morning they were dressed, salted, and dried. After se- 
curing the birds the men hooked turtles of immense size. Our 
crew made purchases, and on our return trip we were surrounded 
by birds living and dead, eggs sound and unsound, whole and 
broken, and in one corner a huge turtle five feet long lay on its 
back, groaning all night like a human being. What a night ! 

Agincourt is much larger than Pinnacle or Craig, and stands 
out of the water five hundred and forty feet. It contains per- 
haps ten acres, and is the home of more than a hundred Chi- 
nese, who came originally from Kelung, Formosa. They live in 
low stone huts on one side of the island, and about their huts 
are trees, shrubs, grass, and flowers. Maize is cultivated and 
eaten in every form, but generally pounded in a mortar and 
made into porridge. Millet, pumpkins, cucumbers, and beans 
are grown, which, with their salted birds and shell-fish, consti- 
tute their food. Unlike 'the Chinese elsewhere, they care little 
for rice. Skipping from hillock to hillock I saw flocks of 
goats, but no other animals were seen. 

On a high place above the huts I came upon an old fort 
like the Pictish remains seen in Sutherlandshire, Scotland. It 
looked to be very ancient, but who were its builders and what 
its purpose remained a mystery. The oldest inhabitant, a man 
past fourscore, could give no account of it. One wondered if 
it belonged to the Dutch regime, and if, when they fortified 
Palm Island, at the mouth of the Kelung harbor, they also 


planted their guns here. Or were mutineers from some pass- 
ing vessel left ashore on this lonely isle? Or is it the work 
of some shipwrecked crew, some Robinson Crusoe or veritable 
Enoch Arden? Nothing is left to tell the tale. Certain it is, 
however, that anxious hands in the far-gone past put stone upon 
stone, and there they stand, marking the place where, perhaps 
centuries ago, their builders sat, waiting wearily for the sail 
that never came, hstening nightly to 

" The myriad shriek of wheeling oceafl-fowl, 
The league-long roller thundering en the reef." 

The present-day inhabitants of Agincourt we found to be 
bright and kindly in their disposition. On our first visit, in 
1879, our party was made up of myself and wife, a friend from 
Scotland, and several students. When the people sighted us 
they watched us from the rocks along the shore until we were 
within speaking distance, when they warned us not to try to 
land, as the shore was dangerous. One of their men plunged 
into the water and swam out to our junk, having fastened round 
his waist a rope, the other end of which was secured to a rock. 
When he was taken on board and the rope fastened to our 
junk, we were hauled to shore. The ledge was very rugged, 
and as the waves carried the junk near enough, each one had 
to be ready and jump to shore, there to be caught by our new- 
found friends. It was a perilous landing, and were it not for 
the strength and bravery of those fishermen one of our num- 
ber would not have returned. Our stay was made pleasant by 
the unfailing kindness of the people, who, though poor and 
ignorant, received us graciously, and listened with interest to 
the gospel we preached. 

A few years ago an American sailing-vessel was becalmed 
near Agincourt, and the captain's son and a traveling-com- 
panion rowed to shore in search of game. Before their return 
a gale arose, and the ship was driven before the storm until it 


found shelter in Kelung harbor. The captain reported the 
catastrophe, and a steamer was sent in search of the missing 
men, but no trace of them was ever found. The islanders may 
have been blamed, but I am confident that in their hands the 
young men would have been kindly treated. It was not the 
poor islanders that did the deed, but the merciless, hungry sea. 

I set out a third time to visit Agincourt. This time our 
junk was a small coal-boat that had been cleaned and ballasted 
with sand. With a good supply of food and fresh water, we 
set sail at dark. Our course lay in a northerly direction, but 
when morning dawned we were far down the east coast of For- 
mosa, opposite So Bay. Putting about, we had to fight our 
way back against wind and wave. We were carried eastward 
until land was out of sight and night came down. Dense 
fogs had settled on the Formosa hills, and the crew were ter- 
rified and almost helpless. There was no compass on board 
except a small one attached to my watch-guard. The helms- 
man had completely lost his bearings, and our boat began to 
drift. The seamen were horror-stricken, but the students were 
calm and undismayed. In such circumstances nothing but a 
real trust in the living God can stand the stress and strain. 
Meanwhile I watched the scudding clouds, on the lookout for 
the beacon-lights of heaven. At last there was a rift and the 
glorious stars were seen, steady and true as of old. The 
helmsman was changed, the boat's course altered, and next 
day we sailed into Kelung harbor and found shelter at the 
mission-house there. 

Our boat was repaired, a new crew secured, and we put out 
again. This trip winds and waves were favorable, and in due 
time the three islands were sighted. Craig was passed and we 
steered for Agincourt. The people went wild with joy, and 
not in vain did we tell " the old, old story." Their lot is hard, 
like life in St. Kilda, and their island is one of " the loneliest in 
a lonely sea" ; but the gospel is for them, and the word spoken 


on those journeys will not return void. For He said, " Surely 
the isles shall wait for me ;" and the voice of storm-swept Agm- 
court will be heard when 

" 'Midst the streams of distant lands 
The islands sound his praise ; 
And, all combined, with one accord 
Jehovah's glories raise." 



Threatenings— The first shot— Hostilities— The Black Flags— The mis- 
sionary's epitaph — Persecutions in Sin-tiam — At Kelung — My val- 
uables— A perilous hour — Astride a shell — Collapsed — Shut out — A 
narrow escape — A prisoner of war — The French leaving — " The mis- 
sion wiped out" — Indemnity — New churches— Feng-shuy — "Nee 
tamen consumebatur " 

IN 1884 a black cloud began to shape itself on oiir hori- 
zon, and soon the heavens were overcast and threatening. 
Those were days of darkness in North Formosa. China had 
become involved in a dispute with France about a boundary- 
line in Tonquin. It was not settled satisfactorily, and France, 
without declaring war, sent a fleet to the China Sea and bom- 
barded the forts at Foo-chow and other places. As Formosa 
was under the jurisdiction of China it became one of the cen- 
ters of attack, as was the case more recently in the war with 
Japan. In the summer of 1884 several French war-ships ap- 
peared, and very soon the news spread throughout North For- 
mosa that the French were coming. The people were both 
alarmed and enraged. Their animosity was aroused against 
all foreigners and those associated with them. The missionary 
was at once suspected, and the native Christians were accused 
of being in league with France. Torture and death were 
threatened against all our converts. Chinese soldiers ground 
their long knives in the presence of the Christians, and some- 
times caught the children, brandished their sharpened knives 



over their lieads, and swore that they would all be cut to pieces 
when the first barbarian shot should be fired. 

Letters from preachers and converts in different parts of the 
field were brought to me at Tamsui at all hours of the day and 
night. A cloud hung over our entire mission work. In July 
I was on Palm Island, at the mouth of Kelung harbor, teach- 
ing the students in the mission-house there. Chinese soldiers 
paraded in front of the building, sometimes, indeed, strutting 
into our study-room, jeering and vilifying us all the while, and 
threatening to kill us all on the spot should the French, then 
in the harbor, take action. One day a movement was seen 
among the French fleet. One large man-of-war weighed 
anchor and took position near the Chinese fort. The guns 
were directed and ready. The Chinese in the fort were in 
readiness for attack and would have answered the first charge. 
We watched ever}' movement, awaiting anxiously the opening 
shot. But all remained quiet that day. 

Shortly afterward a letter came from a native preacher re- 
questing me to visit a Christian family, ten miles from Kelung, 
where there was sickness. We left Palm Island on this errand, 
but our departure was none too soon, for on August 5th five 
French war-ships bombarded and destroyed the Chinese fort. 
Four days after the bombardment, in company with an Eng- 
lishman, I went around the coast in a steamship, and was al- 
lowed to go on shore to examine the smoking fortifications. 
Soldiers were lying on their faces, with bodies shattered. Evi- 
dently they had been fleeing when exploded shells ended their 
lives. These shells were sent with such terrific force as to cut 
off branches of a tree that were half a foot in diameter. A 
magazine that had exploded hurled masses of concrete to an 
incredible. distance. The Englishman and mj'self, with one of 
my students, were invited on board the flag-ship " La Galis- 
sonair " and taken through every part of the vessel. When we 
went down below our attention was directed to three holes, 




t— » 










nearly a foot in diameter, just above the suiface of the water, 
made by shells from the Chinese fort. The vice-admiral 
spoke in the highest terms of the gunners who aimed so truly. 
Though he was a man of war, this officer was also a man of 
sympathy ; for when my student looked afraid as the soldiers 
under drill and their officers dashed to and fro with swords 
danghng at their sides, he said, " Poor fellow! Tell him not 
to be afraid ; we have no pleasure in killing people." 

Now that the first shot had been fired and hostilities really 
begun, the joy of the ever-enlarging mobs of looters knew no 
bounds. They had nothing to lose in the war, but everything 
to gain. It was a rare opportunity for plunder and vengeance. 
They hoisted and carried black flags, butchered swine, drank 
sam-shu (liquor), and carried on their work quite methodically. 
It seemed as if there would be wholesale bloodshed. The 
Christians were their first and special object of attack. Seven 
of the best of our churches were utterly destroyed, and others 
were greatly impaired. At Toa-liong-pong, near the home of 
Koa Kau, the mob tore down the chapel, and, having made 
on the site a huge mound, they erected beside it, out of the 
bricks of the ruined chapel, a pile eight feet high, and, after 
plastering it over with black mud, they inscribed on the side 
facing the road, in large Chinese characters, the epitaph: 
" MacKay, the black-bearded devil, lies here. His work is 

At Sin-tiam the mob entered the chapel, took the communion- 
roll, which was in the drawer of the desk on the platform, and 
beginning with the first name, they marked every member as a 
victim. The name of the first having been announced, forty 
or fifty were despatched to set fire to his dwelling, plunder his 
property, beat his family, and destroy all their belongings. So 
suddenly was the attack made on the mission buildings that 
the native pastor's wife and family narrowly escaped with theii 
lives. A man and his wife, each over sixty years of age, were 


taken to the water's edge in front of the church and given 
their choice between denying their God and death by drown- 
ing. They spurned the threat and would not recant. Then 
they were taken into the water knee-deep and the akernatives 
again presented, this time money being offered if they would 
renounce their faith. A second time they refused. Then in 
mad rage they were dragged still further into the flowing Sin- 
tiam, and a third chance given, to be a third time refused. 
There they suffered, martyrs for the faith, to whom death was 
nothing compared with dishonoring their Lord. 

Another man, belonging to the same church, had sphts of 
bamboo placed between the fingers, and these then tightly 
bound with cords. He was entreated to return to the rehgion 
of his fathers, but he remained steadfast. The cords were 
pulled tighter, and yet more tightly, until the blood oozed out 
at the finger-tips. Still he refused to surrender. He was then 
knocked senseless, and his assailants rushed off, in answer to 
the call of hundreds with the black flag, to destroy the prop- 
erty and torture the members of other Christian famihes. He 
recovered consciousness, survived the injuries received, and 
became more devoted to the cause of Christ than ever before. 

The brothers of one man closed the door on him when he 
was flying for his life, because he was a Christian, and they 
tauntingly asked him, " Where is your God now? Why can- 
not your God protect you? " 

Another was seized, hoops of bamboo bound around his 
head, and splits of wood tied around his legs, until he swooned 
away. Kicked and beaten, he was left for dead ; but he sur- 
vived, and harsh treatment was unavailing, for he did not for- 
sake the true God. 

The infuriated persecutors seized a young man, dragged 
him to a tree, and then, throwing his cue over a branch, they 
pulled it until his toes could scarcely touch the ground. Even 
this atrocity did not satisfy their mahgnant rage, for, while 


spitting upon him and jeering at him, they sneered, " This is 
one who joined the barbarian's church." 

An elder and his family escaped to a coal-mine in the neigh- 
borhood, and for ten days they continued there, going out at 
night into the fields in search of potatoes to keep themselves 
alive. It was impossible to cook food, for the smoke would 
have betrayed their hiding-place. Thirty-six families at that 
once prosperous station were left homeless, houseless, penniless. 

Three years afterward the Sin-tiam Christians sent me a let- 
ter to the effect that, though they had to begin life, as it were, 
anew, after the days of trial, they were in as good circumstances, 
and some of them in even better, than previously. Thus the 
true and loving God vindicates his own cause. Their enemies 
perished miserably ; several of the ringleaders were murdered 
by the savages, others died of fever, and others were imprisoned 
by officials. " For evil-doers shall be cut off : but those that 
wait upon the Lord, they shall inherit the earth." 

At Kelung the entire town was deserted by the Chinese. 
There was there an elderly female convert who owned a small 
house and some property. Wrapping the deed in a handker- 
chief, she placed it between her shoulders under her gar- 
ments. Having bound feet, she could only hobble along with 
the aid of a staff, but still she hoped to evade the searching 
eyes of the persecutors. Unfortunately, however, they caught 
her, stripped her of her upper garments, found the deed, took 
possession of it, beat her with the sides of their long knives 
until she was horribly bruised from head to foot, and then they 
let her go. After peace was restored she returned to Kelung, 
and continued one of the most zealous followers of Jesus at 
that station. 

These are only a few examples of the trials and sufferings 
endured by Christians in North Formosa as the result of the 
French attack. 

In October the French war-ships were in position before the 


Tamsui forts. An English man-of-war was by this time in the 
harbor to protect foreigners, and I was asked to go on board 
with my family and to take my valuables with me. I told the 
good friends that my valuables were in and around the col- 
lege, and that I knew they could not go on board. Valuables! 
The men who were my children in the Lord, who journeyed 
with me, ministering to me in sickness, wading streams, scal- 
ing mountains, facing danger by sea and by land, never once 
flinching before any foe — they were my valuables ! While 
they were on shore I would not go on board. If they were 
to suffer we would suffer together. 

When the bombarding began we put our little children under 
the floor of the house, that they might not be alarmed. My 
wife went out and in during these trying hours. I paced the 
front of the house with A Hoa, while shot and shell whizzed 
and burst around us. One shell struck a part of Oxford Col- 
lege, another a corner of the Girls' School, and still another a 
stone in front of us, and sent it into mid-air in a thousand atoms. 
A little to the west of us another went into the ground, goug- 
ing a great hole and sending up a cloud of dust and stones. 
The suction of one, as it passed, was hke a sudden gust of wind. 
Amid the smoke from forts and ships, and the roar and thun- 
der of shot and shell, we walked to and fro, feeling that our 
God was round about us. " Thou shalt not be afraid for the 
terror by night, nor for the arrow that flieth by day." 

When the firing ceased, six unexploded shells, weighing forty 
pounds each, were found within a hundred feet of our door. 
With great care we had them conveyed to the river, placed in 
a boat, and sunk. 

One poor heathen, not far from the college, found a shell, 
sat astride it, and began to work with chisel and hammer to 
extract the powder. It burst, carrying off both his limbs into 
the branches of a tree under which he was sitting. He hved 
for a few minutes, the explosion having so twisted the flesh 


and arteries that the escape of blood was somewhat interfered 
with. But for that last moment, with half his body blown 
away, his mind was still on the treasures of earth. Seeing the 
contents of his pocket on the ground, he said with his last 
breath, " Pick up that dollar." Poor, dark, hopeless heathen- 

From the commencement of hostilities until that date I had 
no rest night or day. After the bombardment I was ill and 
unconscious for some time. Here is the v.-ritten statement of 
C. H. Johansen, M.D., who attended me at the time : " I have 
been the medical attendant of Rev. Dr. Mac Kay, who in the 
beginning of the war was overburdened with work, and in 
anxiety about the Christian people of the stations. This, com- 
bined with the pernicious influence of the hot Tamsui climate, 
brought on inflammation of the brain (meningitis cerelDralis 
acute). During many days he was without sleep, and this 
brought on utter exhaustion of his system. The fever was 
never less than one hundred and two degrees during those days. 
One day a crisis seemed to approach ; everybody's opinion was 
that the result would be fatal/ all medicines having failed to 
produce sleep. Fortunately I heard that the steamship ' Hai- 
loong' had brought ice to Tamsui for Mr. John Dodd. At 
my request, Mr. Dodd gave all the ice he had to cool Dr. 
MacKay's burning head. Almost immediately after tne appli- 
cation of the ice he fell into a sound sleep, which lasted for 
thirty-six hours. Then the ice was finished, but he awoke 

The second week of October, my wife, children, and the 
Jamiesons left Tamsui for Hong Kong in accordance with the 
orders of the British consul. On the 21st I was induced to 
board the steamship " Fu-kien " to make a round trip and re- 
turn to Tamsui. Four days afterward, as we entered the 
Hong Kong harbor, we heard that Tamsui was blockaded, and 
that we could not return. At length, hearing that the block- 


ade had been raised, I left my family still at Hong Kong and 
went on board the steamship " Hai-loong." When half-way 
across the Formosa Channel we had to tack about and return 
to the mainland for shelter, because of a terrific storm and 
heavy sea. After some delay we again headed for Tamsui; 
but when in sight of that port we saw two large French men- 
of-war, one on either hand, guarding the entrance. We started 
as if to pass between them, and signaled, " Blockade raised." 
We were answered by a blank shot. Our captain signaled 
again. This time we were answered by a shell whizzing across 
our bow. Immediately the bugle sounded, and we saw guns 
run out, and men at their posts ready to give us two full broad- 
sides. Our little merchant steamer moved slowly back, and 
when the captain boarded the French war-ship he was told that 
the report of the blockade being raised was false, and that if 
we had moved a foot farther forward the third shot would 
have sunk us. We then steered to Amoy, on the mainland, 
and after a delay of one hour there we steamed for the Pesca- 
dore Islands, not far from Formosa, where the French head- 
quarters were. There the French admiral was interviewed, 
and after returning to Amoy we once more set sail for Tamsui. 
One day, at two o'clock in the afternoon, I stepped ashore, and 
was met by preachers, students, and converts, many of whom 
wept for joy. 

After some time, desiring to visit the churches, I procured 
a pass, of which the following is a copy : 

" British Consulate, Tamsui, 
" May 27, 1885. 

"To THE Officer in Chief Command of the French 

Forces at Kelung : 

" The bearer of this paper, the Rev. George Leslie MacKay, 
D.D., a British subject, missionary in Formosa, wishes to enter 
Kelung to visit his chapel and his house there, and to proceed 


through Kelung to Kap-tsu-lan, on the east coast of Formosa, 
to visit his converts there. Wherefore I, the undersigned, 
consul for Great Britain at Tamsui, do beg the officer in chief 
command of the French forces in Kelung to grant the said 
George Leslie MacKay entry into, and a free and safe passage 
through, Kelung. He will be accompanied by two Chinese 
followers belonging to his mission, named, respectively, Giam 
Chheng Hoa and lap Sun. 

"A. Frater, 
"Her Britannic Majesty's Consul at Tamsui." 

I took a bamboo pole, twenty feet in length, and tied there- 
on the old flag of Great Britain ; and, with the two preachers 
mentioned in the pass, and a burden-bearer, proceeded up the 
river. Through Bang-kah we passed, the flag waving in the 
breeze. In a few hours we neared the Chinese encampment. 
Soldiers rushed out and shouted in their own dialect, "The 
British flag!" We marched right on. Soldiers opened right 
and left. We passed through thousands of them, and right 
up into the presence of the Chinese commander-in-chief, Liu 
Ming Chuan. A few words inspired mutual confidence, and I 
changed my flag for a flag of truce. The general stated that 
I would be treated with respect by all the soldiers under his 
command, but he advised me not tO approach the French, 
lest I should be fired upon. An American was in the employ 
of this military official, and he drew up the soldiers under his 
command into two Hnes to present arms as we passed between. 
We were then escorted within sight of the boundary between 
the Chinese and the French, who were still in earthworks on 
the tops of the hills and peaks. 

We crossed the river in a longboat, and went into a cleared 
spot of ground— a tea-plantation— planted our flagstaff, stood 
beside it, and waited for the French signals. We were observed 
immediately, and eight soldiers ran down the steep hillside to 


meet us. When within hailing distance one waved his hand. 
I understood that to mean that we should advance, and accord- 
ingly we moved forward. \\'hcn in a winding path, where the 
reeds were in some places above our heads, marching single 
file, we came suddenly face to face with the soldiers. I was 
in advance of our party. Straightway four of the soldiers 
dropped on their knees, the other four stood still, and all 
leveled their rifles at my breast. Turning around, I pointed 
to my flag of truce, and signaled the bearer to step to my side. 
One of the soldiers advanced. I stepped forward, saluted him, 
and showed him my pass. He glanced at it, and after some 
altercation, in which one of the Frenchmen who knew a little 
English acted as interpreter, we were blindfolded with our 
pocket-handkerchiefs, and conducted by the soldiers, one on 
each side of me, and one with each of my followers. They led 
us through streams of water, among tall grass, under a burning 
sun, for seven long hours. Had we been taken in a straight 
course we could have covered the distance within an hour. 
About six o'clock in the evening we were brought into the 
presence of the French colonel in the Chinese custom-house, 
and there a number of impertinent questions were put to us. 
We were told that we could not remain ashore for the night, 
but would be sent on board a man-of-war in the harbor, as 
prisoners of war. We were then led away to the water's edge, 
taken into a boat, relieved of the bhndfold, and in five minutes 
were alongside of the man-of-war. There was much sneering 
and laughing among the soldiers and sailors, for they sup- 
posed that in me they had captured a German spy. We were 
ordered upon deck, where the white-haired commander, after 
a short interview, gave orders that my party should be kindly 
treated. I was taken into his cabin, not as a prisoner of war, 
but as a guest. The good old Frenchman said he had heard 
about our mission work, for they had an English pilot in the 
fleet who was an old Formosan friend of mine. In the mom- 


ing he went ashore with us himself, and the insolent colonel 
was much more civil. The old commander said he regretted 
that we would have to be blindfolded again in going back 
through the lines, but it was in accordance with the usages of 
war. In returning through the lines all were more respectful 
and friendly when they learned who we were. Soldiers were 
told off to take us within sight of the Chinese hues. They 
shook hands cordially, and watched us until we recrossed the 
stream in the same boat and went outside of their boundary- 

Once more at liberty, we visited the Kap-tsu-lan plain, on the 
east coast, and found the chapels clean, and the converts cheer- 
ful and happy. The persecutions and hardships they endured 
only bound them more closely to the cause of Christ. There 
were no desertions from his standard, and everywhere the 
heathen marveled to see men and women prefer suffering and 
even death to peace, dollars, and life that could be theirs only 
by denying their Lord. 

Leaving Tamsui in June, 1885, under a burning sun, we pro- 
ceeded to Kelung, and boarded the French man-of-war com- 
manded by Vice- Admiral Lespes. We were told we could get 
ashore anywhere, as the French would soon be away. I im- 
mediately rowed to Palm Island, and arrived in time to save 
our property from the mobs that were gathering in crowds to 
loot and plunder before the owners returned. I hoisted the 
British flag over the mission premises. In half an hour we 
heard the bugle sound, and there was commotion among the 
ironclads. A tremendous cheer rent the air, for the French 
sailors were glad the war was over. One ship steamed slowly 
up, followed by another and another, until eight were in line 
out at sea. One remained to pick up stragglers. I boarded 
her the following day, and the commander assured me that 
he was disgusted with the whole affair, as was also the admiral 

200 FROM F/fR FORM OS/1 

On shore I found not a vestige of the Kelung chapel save 
rubbish. The temples had been plundered, the carved work 
defaced, buildings overthrown, roofs torn from houses, and poor 
Kelung was lying silent and deserted. The Chinese were' on 
the hills, waiting the departure of the French, when they would 
return to their desolated homes in the town. 

When the French left, the heathen were jubilant. They 
thought Christianity was blotted out because the chapels had 
been destroyed. Everywhere the shout of derision was made 
to ring in our ears: " Long-tsong bo-khi!" the meaning of 
which is, " The mission is wiped out." We were not discour- 
aged, however, and I prepared a statement of our losses in the 
destruction of mission property by looters, and submitted it 
to Liu Ming Chuan, the commander-in-chief of the Chinese 
forces. Without delay or argument, and without reference to 
Peking, he paid as indemnity the sum of ten thousand Mexican 

When I received the. indemnity money and planned the re- 
building of the chapels I had to decide whether to erect twenty- 
four fragile structures or twelve medium ones or six substan- 
tial, commodious buildings. Deciding on the last, I drew 
plans and made models. Standing on the site of the ruins at 
Sin-tiam, we lifted a song of praise to God. With our chapel 
in ruins, the townspeople and others looking on thought us 
crazy. But out of the ruins another building would rise, and 
so we sang with glad and hopeful hearts. I employed men to 
go into the neighboring hiU and quarry sandstone ; and others 
with their boats to bring poles, boards, and lime for building. 
Neither the workmen nor the overseers ever saw a building like 
the one we now planned to erect. I made some of the models 
out of turnips, others out of brick and mortar, and still others 
out of wood. We began work at three places simultaneously 
— at Sin-tiam, Bang-kah, and Sek-khau — and in twelve weeks 
we finished three splendid edifices. How imposing they looked, 


with their seventy or eighty feet 6f tower and spire of soh"d 
masonry! And how our spirits revived as we saw then\ rise 
in their splendid beauty on the site of our ruined churches! 

But why use money in building spires? Was it for orna- 
mental or for useful purposes? For both'ornament and use, 
especially as a standing disproof of the Chinese superstition 
about feng-shuy, by which, in a general way people mean 
"good luck," and which has reference to a thousand things. 
They suppose, for instance, that there is a sort of equilib- 
rium, or indefinable something, in earth or air, which must not 
be recklessly interfered with. It is only necessary to Con- 
tinue the wall of a new chapel a few inches above the surround- 
ing buildings to arouse neighbors into fury and consternation, 
for that would interfere with feng-shuy. Thousands o"f dis- 
turbances have been caused by foreigners carrying on their 
own work in their own way, but unwittingly running counter 
to this Chinese notion." Knowing that the governor was pro- 
gressive in his ideas, that he was friendly to myself and the mis- 
sion, and that he had no great affection for the Bang-kah peo* 
pie, who through all the French troubles had maligned and 
abused him, I thought it opportune, now that new churches 
were being built, to erect spires upon the chapels at Bang-kah, 
Sin-tiam, and Sek-khau, to show the heathen that their notion 
of good luck was vain superstition. We continued the tower 
above the gable of the roof seven feet, and then higher and 
higher. The people would stand and gaze for hours in won- 
der and amazement. But they made no disturbance, save that 
they quarreled among themselves. The pomt in dispute was 
whether it was the scaffold or the newly erected spire that was 
swaying in the wind, and once the contention almost ended in 
a hand-to-hand fight. We finished the spires. On the front 
of each, in stucco plaster, I put the burning bush, with the his- 
toric motto, " Nee tamen consumebatur," in Chinese characters. 

The cry about the mission being wiped out now ceased to 


be heard, and the people called themselves fools for tearing 
down the old chapels. " Look now," they said, " the chapel 
towers above our temple. It is larger than the one we de- 
stroyed. If we touch this one he will build another and a 
bigger one. We cannot stop the barbarian missionary." 

While the work of rebuilding chapels went on, other depart- 
ments were not neglected. Medicines were dispensed, the 
students were taught, the various fields were visited, and every 
night the gospel was preached. 

New churches were erected in place of those destroyed. 
Repairs were made wherever needed. And that was not all. 
Not only had we our forty chapels, as before the coming of 
the French, but five new stations were opened, and at each a 
chapel was erected. Month by month and year by year the 
work prospered. Point after point was occupied. Chapel 
after chapel was built. The forty became fifty, and the fifty 
increased to sixty. That was how the mission was wiped 
out ! The fire of God was indeed in the bush, but over it all 
was inscribed " Nee tamen consumebatur." 




Subduing the savages — Chinese and Pe-po-hoan — Original houses — 
Frankness of Pe-po-hoan — Pe-po-hoan cruelty — Nature-worship — 
Dislike of idolatry 

AS has already been indicated, the Chinese in Formosa have 
Jr\. been gradually overcoming the various aboriginal tribes 
and subduing them to their own modes of hfe and worship. 
We have, therefore, on the island aborigines in all stages of 
civilization. In the mountains are the wild, unconquered sav- 
ages, who scorn the intruder's claim, and never lose an oppor- 
tunity to wreak vengeance on some ill-fated Chinese head. 
These the Chinese call Chhi-hoan ("raw barbarians"). But 
the power and patience of the superior race are too much for 
the unskilled and shiftless savage, and tribe after tribe is being 
brought under subjection. We come now to speak of these 
conquered aborigines, and of life and work among them. The 
most important are the Pe-po-hoan, with whom are allied the 
few settlements of Sek-hoan. The Lam-si-hoan, farther south, 
are not far removed from savage, and have only recently sub- 
mitted to Chinese authority. 

The Pe-po-hoan are found in many parts of the island ; but 
their home in North Formosa is in the Kap-tsu-lan plain, a 
rich, low-lying tract on the east coast, between the mountains 
and the sea. This plain is of recent geological date, and was 
formed by the filling up of a large bay by sand and debris 



washed down by mountain streams. The soil is admirably 
adapted for rice-culture, which is, indeed, carried on very ex- 
tensively by the inhabitants. The atmosphere, however, is 
very damp ; heavy vapors driven in from the sea, and floating 
clouds tapped by the mountain-peaks, not only make traveling 
uncomfortable and at times well-nigh impossible, but make life 
itself, to both native and foreigner, a burden too heavy to be 
borne. The dread malaria works havoc in every home. Prjor 
to their subjugation by the Chinese the Pe-po-hoan lived in 
houses very different in style and very much superior to those 
they now inhabit. Their raised floors were much more con- 
ducive to health than the damp mud-floors of the Chinese 
dwellings now to be seen everywhere in the plain. In this re- 
spect, at least, the change has been for the worse. The Pe-po- 
hoan is by nature simple, easily imposed upon, thriftless, and 
improvident. He has still a streak of the savage, and in those 
qualities that go to insure success he is distinctly inferior to his 
Chinese conqueror. There were at one time thirty-six thnving 
villages in the Kap-tsu-lan plain. The Chinese settlers came 
in, enterprising, aggressive, and not overscrupulous, and little 
by little the weaker went to the wall. The Pe-po-hoan were 
crowded out of the cultivated land, many of their villages were 
scattered, and they had to begin hfe anew in the waste jungle. 
And very often, when they had succeeded in reclaiming land 
to grow rice and vegetables enough to supply their meager 
wants, the greedy Chinese would again appear, and, either by 
winning their confidence or by engaging them in dispute, 
would gain a foothold and in the end rob them of their lands. 
Being unable to read and being ignorant of law, they are 
almost entirely at the mercy of their enemies. It sometifhes 
makes one's blood boil to see the iniquities practised upon 
these simple-minded creatures by Chinese officials, speculators, 
and traders. 

When foreigners first come in contact with the Pe-po-hoan 


they are delighted with their frankness of manner and warmth 
of emotion, and forthwith express the opinion that this race is 
superior to the Chinese. I never shared that view. The 
longer my experience among them the plainer appears to me 
the inferiority of the Malayan. For downright cruelty and 
cut-throat baseness the Pe-po-hoan far outdistance the Chinese, 
and with all their easy good nature they manifest the revenge- 
ful spirit of the race to which they belong. One example will 
illustrate Pe-po-hoan cruelty. A girl was engaged to be mar- 
ried to a young man. One night, when the whole village was 
staggering in a drunken carousal, the girl was lost. Her dead 
body was found by a search-party, stripped of its clothes. 
Suspicion fell on her lover. He tried to escape, but was seized 
and placed in the stocks, a rude construction of logs extem- 
porized for the occasion, capable of inflicting great agony. 
His hands were stretched out above his head and tied. In a 
few days he was removed to the sand-bank beside the sea. 
The father and mother of the maiden took an old knife, 
slashed his limbs, and cut portions of his body and put them 
into his mouth. He was left there on the burning sand with 
the blood oozing from his wounds and drying in the heat of 
the sun. His thirst became intolerable, and he cried piteously 
for some one to end his misery. But no ; his sister was not 
allowed to go to him with one small " bamboo " of water to 
quench his thirst. There he perished, and his body was left 
to the ravenous dogs of the plain. Such is Pe-po-hoan venge- 

Originally the Pe-po-hoan were nature-worshipers, like^the 
savages in the mountains. They had no temple, idol, or 
priest. They had no idea of a personal God, but believed in 
the existence of innumerable spirits, whose favor and help it 
was to their interest to propitiate. They reverenced the spirits 
of their ancestors, who had gone away, as the American Indian 
would say, to the " happy hunting-ground." They had all the 


superstitions of the savage, and indulged in such feasts and 
orgies as still constitute the religious rites of the untamed 
mountain tribes. 

But all this was changed when they bowed their necks to 
the yoke of civilization. Their conquerors forced upon them 
not only the cue and their style of dress, but also the whole 
paraphernalia of Chinese idolatry-. Whenever a tribe submits, 
the first thing is to shave the head in token of allegiance, and 
then temples, idols, and tablets are introduced. At the pres- 
ent time the religion of the Pe-po-hoan is the potpourri of 
Confucian morahty, Buddhistic idolatry, and Tauistic demon- 
olatry, to which they have added relics of their own nature- 
worship and superstition. Some of the younger devotees are 
the most bigoted idolaters in China, but very many of the 
people hate the new order of things. Idolatry does not suit 
the average Pe-po-hoan, and it is only of necessity that he sub- 
mits to even the formal observance of its rites and ceremonies. 
It is poHtical rather than religious, and to the large majority 
is meaningless, except as a reminder of their enslavement to 
an alien race. 



The honored farmer — A Formosa farm — Irrigation — The water-buffalo 
— Rice-culture — The farmer's lot 

FORMOSA is essentially an agricultural country, and the 
farming class is both important and honorable. In all 
parts of China the place of honor is given to the literary man ; 
but the farmer makes a good second, and is much more highly 
esteemed than either the mechanic or the merchant. The em- 
peror pays honor to husbandry once a year by holding the plow. 
In Formosa the agricultural class is the mainstay of the coun- 
trj'. They are, on the whole, hard-working, honest, and free 
from many of the vices that characterize city life. As the 
Kap-tsu-lan plain is one of the richest parts of the island, and 
as rice is the great staple of the land, special reference may 
now be made to this department of industry. A plain and 
brief account of rice-farming should find interested readers 
among other classes than those who themselves till the soil. 

When we speak of a farm in Formosa one must not ima- 
gine broad fields inclosed in high fences, and each farmer the 
proud possessor of one hundred or one thousand acres. The 
entire farm of a family in Formosa would make but a garden 
for an agriculturist in America. The owner of eight or ten 
acres is looked upon as in easy circumstances. The farms are. 
all small and are entirely without fences. A rice-farm is 



divided into little irregular plots for the purposes of irrigation. 
These plots are made by throwing up around each low mounds 
of earth, by which means the water is retained at the required 

Rice is grown in fields flooded with water, and the farmer 
exhibits great ingenuity in the various modes of conveying the 
water to where it is required. The most efficient is by a great 
watercourse constructed along the circuitous bank of the river 
near Sin-tiam, by which the whole of the Bang-kah plain is 
thoroughly irrigated by water taken from within the moun- 
tains. In the construction of this watercourse a tunnel eight 
feet by six was made through an extensive rock ; an aqueduct 
fifty feet high carries the water over another river, and when 
it reaches the Bang-kah plain it is divided into innumerable 
drains and conveyed to all the farms. A clumsy contrivance 
hke a treadmill is sometimes used for slight elevations ; a wind- 
lass fixed in a box-trough, the lower end of which is in the 
stream, is operated by two men, and works an endless chain 
of carriers conveying the water up the trough and depositing 
it in a drain on the bank. Another method of irrigation is 
comparatively simple. On the uplands a circular reservoir is 
excavated and is supplied by the heavy rains. These reser- 
voirs are exceedingly useful, not only for the purposes of irri- 
gation, but also as bathing-places for the water-buffalo. By 
these methods every foot of rice-lands is adequately supplied 
with water. 

For dry plowing the ox is used, but in rice-cultivation the 
water-buffalo is indispensable. He is, indeed, by far the most 
valuable animal to the farmer, and so highly prized that proc- 
lamations are often issued forbidding the people to slay him 
for food. He is more uncouth than the ox, and on account 
of his intractability of temper would seem to have been only 
recently domesticated. Large pools of water are absolutely 
necessary for this creature to wallow or bathe in; hence the 


name water-buffalo. As soon as released from the plow he 
will plimge into the pond and remain there a considerable 
time, with only part of his head, his nostrils, and his horns above 
water. The implements required by the farmer are few and 
simple, and are no improvement on those used centuries ago. 
A broad hoe, a wooden plow with an iron share, a heavy 
wooden harrow or " drag," and a harvest-sickle are all that he 

The rice grown in Formosa must be distinguished from the 
rice {Zizania aquatica) found growing wild in Rice Lake, On- 
tario, and other parts of America. It is a distinct variety 
{Oryza saliva) and of superior quality. A mountain-rice is 
grown on the dry uplands, and does not require irrigation, but 
it is quite inferior. 

Rice is not sown broadcast in the open field, like wheat and 
other cereals, but requires to be transplanted. The seeds are 
first steeped in water and spread out in large baskets under 
cover till they have begun to sprout. They are then sown 
thickly in a small bed, which is protected from winds and birds 
and watered with a liquid fertilizer. At the expiration of three 
months the crop is about six inches high and is ready for 

Meanwhile the large rice-field has been plowed, harrowed, 
and prepared for the plants. The field slopes down to one 
side, and the plots aheady referred to are submerged in about 
three inches of water. The water from the reservoir or aque- 
duct is first run into the plot farthest up the slope, from which 
it is let into the others, one by one, by opening a place in the 
dividing mounds or dikes. The entire field must be kept under 
water from before the transplanting until the grain is ready to 

Transplanting rice is a very arduous and wearisome task. 
The farmer digs up the plants from the bed in spadefuls, leav- 
ing a liberal supply of mould about the roots. With a large 


flat basket of these seedling plants he goes into the miry field, 
where the mud and water reach his knees. The basket floats 
on the water. Carrying a supply of the plants in his left 
hand, the farmer wades backward from end to end of the 
row, and breaking off tufts, he sinks them in the soft mud be- 
neath the water at intervals of about eighteen inches. The 
rows are about two feet apart. Then a fortnight later he goes 
over the whole field again on his bare knees, removing the 
duckweed and other obnoxious growths. This is perhaps the 
most distasteful part of the farmer's work, and is a fruitful 
source of rheumatism. Before the grain is ripe he may pos- 
sibly go through once more, bending the bunches down to 
protect them from sweeping wmds. 

Three months after the transplanting comes the harvest. 
This is a busy season with the husbandman. The water is 
drained off ; the rice is cut rapidly by a reaper with the sickle 
or bill-hook, and made into bunches large enough to be held 
conveniently between the hands. The reaper is followed im- 
mediately by a thresher, who draws after him a portable tub. 
This tub has poles set up around almost the entire mouth, to 
which is fastened a canvas screer> to prevent the rice-grains 
from flying away. At the open space the thresher stands, and 
taking a bunch of rice, he gives it two smart strokes on a lad- 
der-like framework placed within the tub after the fashion of 
a wash-board. The straw is then bound into sheaves, and 
when dry is stacked away to be used as fodder for the water- 
buffalo. The grain is carried home in large baskets and placed 
on a winnowing-floor in front of the house. There it is cared 
for, heaped up, and covered every night with rice-straw, and 
spread out in the morning with wooden hoes. It is then win- 
nowed in a fanning-mill similar to that used by Western farm- 
ers, and is stowed away in granaries. The next process 'is the 
hulling, which is done in a hand-mill constructed on the prin- 


ciple of the millstone. This removes the chaff. The bran- 
like shell is removed by pounding the grain in a mortar. The 
rice is then ready for the pot. 

The sheaves are no sooner removed from the field than the 
plowman is once more in the mud and water, a second crop, 
which is now ready for transplanting, is immediately " set," and 
the second harvest is reaped in September or October. After 
the second crop is removed, some plant sweet potatoes, others 
mustard or rape for fertilizing. Three crops can thus be se- 
cured in the course of a year. 

As two crops, and sometimes three, are reaped every year, 
the farmer is kept busy from spring to autumn. During seed- 
time and harvest his wife rises at three o'clock in the morning, 
cooks rice and salted vegetables, prepares hot water for the 
men to wash with, and about four calls them up to breakfast. 
The men are in the field about five o'clock and work till ten, 
when a lunch of boiled rice and some salted vegetable is car- 
ried out to them. At noon they return home for dinner, and 
rest for an hour and a half. In the afternoon the same kind 
of lunch is taken to the field. At seven o'clock they return, 
wash their breasts and hmbs, and sit down to a better meal, 
generally consisting of a tiny cup of hot liquor, pork, and fresh 
vegetables boiled with rice. At nine they retire. 

The farmer's lot in North Formosa is not altogether an 
unhappy one. He works hard and is generally thrifty and 
economical. His wants are few and easily supplied. There 
is monotony, perhaps, but then he knows nothing of the 
"nameless longing " that fills the breasts of much-read farmers 
in the restless West. He has no high ideals, and if he suc- 
ceeds in providing himself and his family with rice and vege- 
tables he does not object to the drudgery of his lot. The 
Pe-po-hoan farmer in the Kap-tsu-lan plain would be tolerably 
comfortable were it not for the oppression of the Chinese 



landowners and yamen men, who often rob him of his hard- 
earned cash and evict him from his land. Under the Japa-. 
nese regime all this is likely to be changed, and the various 
aboriginal tribes may look forward to a brighter day under the 
flag of the " Rising Sun." 



Beginnings- — Traveling — Night in a rice-field — "Discouraging" — The 
first chapel — Results — " No room for barbarians " — Night in an ox- 
stable — An old feud — Savage craft — A surgical operation — At Sin- 
sia — Service at Pak-tau — Dr. Warburg 

HAVING gained a foothold for the gospel and established 
churches among the Chinese in the north and west, our 
attention began to be directed toward the civilized aborigines 
in the Kap-tsu-lan plain on the east. I had already learned 
something of the Pe-po-hoan character, and was prepared to 
find them more emotional, approachable, and responsive than 
the Chinese, although, perhaps, less sohd and stable. The 
obstacles to the gospel among them were not different from 
those meeting us everywhere. They were all heathen, blinded 
by superstition, degraded by idolatry, and with few and weak 
aspirations after higher things. Many of them are poor, and 
are kept in poverty partly by their own indolence, partly by 
untoward circumstances, and mainly by Chinese exactions and 
oppression. They are warm-hearted, and, notwithstanding 
many weaknesses and failures, work among them has been full 
of inspiration and encouragement. 

Setting out from Tamsui with a party of students, we made 
our way over the mountain-ranges south of Kelung and entered 
the Kap-tsu-lan plain. As this plain is but a few feet above 
the sea-level, and as the rainfall is very much greater than in 



other parts of the island, traveling is always attended with 
discomfort and difficulty. By keeping near the sea one can 
find a rather dry path, but inland, during the rainy days, one- 
has to wade through sticky mud, sometimes a foot and a half 
in depth. The paths through the rice-fields are narrow and 
winding, and when the fields are irrigci^ed are at times com- 
pletely submerged. Travehng near the base of the hiountain, 
we passed by the mouth of a ravine, and there we heard yells 
and screams. Immediately a Chinese came up, breathless, and 
reported that four of his companions had just been speared 
and beheaded by the savages, and that he escaped by dodg- 
ing. On entering again on the steep brow of a hill overlook- 
ing the sea, I was in advance, and was just past the mouth of 
the gorge when three savages with spears rushed out and at- 
tacked several elders who were a little way in the rear. The 
elders, with great presence of mind, threw themselves into the 
water and got out of reach of the deadly thrust. 

Once, overtaken by night, we got astray and went miles out 
of our way. The night was dark, and we were wet, hungry, 
and absolutely without our bearings. We staggered round 
and round the plats of a rice-field, stumbling into the mud 
and water, until we stood still and thought awhile. It was a 
moment for serious thought. We were lost and in a strange 
territory. No light could be seen near or far. But we re- 
membered that we were on our Master's business. My stu- 
dents uttered no word of complaint ; indeed, they were posi- 
tively cheerful. We thought of God in front, God in the rear, 
God on the right, God on the left, God within, God above, 
and underneath the everlasting arms. So we plodded along, 
tumbling into mud-pools, scrambling out, and pushing on 
again. The first object with which we came in contact I 
knew by touch to be a rice-stack, and we passed the night 
under its bulging sides. 

The next night was spent in a grass-covered hut, Its sides 


were of reeds, but tlie mud had been washed from the inter- 
stices and now the rain was driven in on the black floor. 
Going right to one of the villages of about three hundred in- 
habitants, we were received with disdain. The men grunted, 
and calling out "Barbarian!" and "Foreign devil!" walked 
away. Women and. children ran into their houses, and then 
■arged wolfish-looking dogs upon us. We stood hstening to 
the yelping of these hungry creatures, and were obliged to 
leave, for not a soul in the village would hear our words. We 
visited another village and received similar treatment. This 
experience was repeated in a third village. Up and down 
through that plain we labored, tour after tour, and still no one 
came forward to accept our message of salvation. •' How 
discouraging! " I hear some one say. Who calls such experi- 
ences discouraging ? I do not. I never did. Our business 
is to do our duty, and to do it independently of what men call 
encouragement and discouragement. I never saw anything 
to discourage in twenty-three long years in North Formosa. 

At length three oaen from a fishing-vnllage by the sea came 
and said : " You have been going through and through our plain, 
and no one has received you. Come to oiir village and we will 
listen to you." One was a very old man who was fittingly nick- 
named " Black-face." A second was middle-aged and had once 
been an actor on the stage. The third was a young man. On 
arriving at their village we sat on large stones in front of the 
head man's house. We talked over matters with some of the 
influential men, and partook of rice and fish. When evening 
came on a tent was constructed out of poles and sails from 
their boats on the beach. Several stones were placed at one 
end and a plank laid upon them for a platform. At dark a 
man took a marine shell with the end broken off, such as they 
used in days gone by when setting out on the war-path, and 
with this "trumpet" he summoned an assembly. Families 
brought benches out of their huts and arranged them in rows. 


These preparations completed, they invited us to proceed with 
our service. We sang, preached, conversed, discussed, an- 
swered questions, till the small hours of the morning. The 
following Jay tlie inhabitants decided to have a house in which 
to worship the true God. They sailed down the coast into 
savage countiy for poles, and although they were attacked 
and wounded, retiuned with their load. Bricks were made 
out of mud mixed with rice-chaff, moulded into shape, and 
dried in the sun. We erected the walls, covered the roof with 
grass, and built a platform of mud. Then every evening, at 
the blowing of the "conch," the whole village turned out. 
They continued to carry their old benches till we procured 
new ones, and there they sat to be taught the everlasting gos- 
pel of our Redeemer. In several weeks — not months — boys 
and girls learned many of our psalms and hymns, while the 
elder people acquired more or less Christian knowledge. 

After laboring there day and night for six or eight weeks I 
came to be much impressed by three different classes who at- 
tended our services. There were poor old toothless women, 
who had wrought hard in the constant struggle for existence, 
squatted on the bare earth, weaving, and as they threw the 
thread they crooned in a low voice : 

" There is a happy land 
Far, far away." 

That land was very real to them — just as real as to their sisters 
in Christendom — and they came to look wistfully for the sign 
that would call them, not to the grass-thatched chapel out in the 
narrow street, but away to the temple not made with hands, in 
the land where the weary rest. Then there were the boys, with 
their bright young faces, into whose Hves our songs brought 
something of hope ; and all day long they sang in their own 
tongue our children's hymn : 

" Jesus loves me, this I know, 
For the Bible tells me so." 


And not the least attractive were the hardy, bold, brave fisher 
men going out in the mornings through the surf, standing — 
not sitting — in their boats, and as they pushed their long oars, 
kept time to the stroke, singing the old Scotch paraphrase : 

"I'm not ashamed to own my Lord, 
Or to defend his cause." 

It was grand. Standing away yonder on the sandy beach 
looking at them and listening to their voices, I wished that it 
were possible for the critics of foreign mission work to drop 
down and, just for once, see for themselves that the gospel of 
Christ is still " the power of God unto salvation to every one 
that believeth ; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek." 

Despite many weaknesses and imperfections in these poor 
aborigines, quite a number of that first village remained con- 
stant to the end, and have gone home to God. The village 
became nominally Christian. My apartment during those 
weeks was a low, musty room, where I slept on a box at night. 
To that place the cast-off machinery of idolatry was brought, 
and more than once I dried my clothes before fires made of 
idolatrous paper, idols, and ancestral tablets. Three men were 
employed to carry other paraphernalia of idol-worship to the 
museum in Tamsui. 

A deputation from another village came to make inquiries. 
I detained them, that they might be present at an evening 
service. They heard fully two hundred voices ring out the 
praises of Almighty God, and they were so charmed that they 
at once invited us to visit their village. I do not know what 
others would have done, but I formed a procession, heading 
it with A Hoa at my side, and arranging the converts in 
double column behind. We marched slowly along the circu- 
itous path, singing as we went. At the end of our short jour- 
ney we drew up into a compact body, and another stirring 
song of praise rose from our lips. With God's message sung 


and preached we captured that village, and the people decided 
to have a place of worship. Willing hands soon completed a 
building, and a native preacher was left in charge of the work, 
as another had been in the first village. We thus had five 
hundred who had thrown away their idols and were nominally 
Christian ; and when they all assembled in the open air to sing 
the songs of Zion I forgot the dark night in the rice-field, the 
cruelty of our first reception, and the many weary hovu"s at 
night, among old baskets, ropes, and nets in a damp room, a 
stranger and alone. Oh, it was soul-inspiring, refreshing, glori- 
ous! We visited other villages and preached the gospel year 
after year to those dark-skinned aborigines. A third chapel 
was erected, a fourth, fifth, sixth, seventh, eighth, yes, even a 
nineteenth chapel in that Kap-tsu-lan plain, and over each a 
native preacher was placed. 

The most southerly village in the plain is Lam-hong-o 
(" South-wind Harbor "), on the south side of So Bay. It was 
visited on a previous occasion, but we were scorned and our 
message rejected. We resolved to revisit it. It was nearly 
dark when we climbed the steep mountain near the sea, and 
had yet to descend on the other side. Holding on to the 
rocks with our hands, we slid down in safety and then followed 
a long bend inward. When we reached the village the rain 
was descending in torrents. Approaching a house, I asked if 
we could remain .overnight. " No room for barbarians," was 
the curt reply. We went to a second house and received a 
similar rebuff. The door of the third was slammed in my face. 
It was hopeless. The night was so dark and the Pacific Ocean 
so tempestuous that we could not go east ; mountains stood 
to the south ; on the north was the harbor, and on the west 
savage territory. We thought of one Chinese family in the 
comer back of the village, and hoped for better things than 
from the Pe-po-hoan. We set out, making oiu* way now over 
seaweed, now thumping against a boat, and now caught by 


the prickly screw-pine. When we reached the door I called 
out, " Can we get any accommodation here for the night? " 
A white-haired man slowly opened the door and drawled out, 
" No room here for barbarians," and slowly closed the door. 
We stood there in the dark and rain, not knowing what to do. 
Then the door opened again and the old head reappeared. 
Man's better nature triumphed, and it was with gratitude we 
heard the Chinese drawl once more : " It is very stormy. You 
can go into the ox-stable if you hke." I see it still, there on 
the left, with its bars across like an old-fashioned farm gate. 
We crawled through. The old man held a hght until we could 
see the one empty stall, and then all was dark. We secured 
rice-straw and prepared to spend the night with the water- 
buflfaloes. In about half an hour a dim hght appeared at the 
door, and there stood the Chinese with a bowl of warm rice 
for each on a tray. And what was strangest of all was his 
refusal to accept cash for either the lodgings or the rice. We 
had with us Ko Chin, an elder, who, though born in Formosa, 
had never spent a night in an ox-stable before. He told me 
afterward that the thought that I was so far from my native 
land, and in such a place, exercised him greatly. It made 
that night memorable in his life, for, though he was a good 
Christian before, he was more determined, more devoted, more 
self-sacrificing ever after. 

On the morning after the night in the ox-stable we went up 
the mountain to the site of a Pe-po-hoan village called Kau- 
kau-a. There oranges now grow, and peaches, pumelos, per- 
simmons, plums, and bread-fruit. It is almost within savage 
territory, and the savages had been friendly until soniC of the 
villagers gave them dog's flesh for venison. When the truth 
came to be known the savages swore vengeance and began 
hostilities. The Kau-kau-a people had to leave the place. They 
moved three miles north to So Bay. There many died of 
■ malarial and other forms of fever. Those who survived chose 


another site and founded the village of Lam-hong-o. There 
are now eleven families descended from the Kau-kau-a vil- 
lagers. Fifty years have elapsed since the feud began, but 
no reconciliation has ever been effected, and the savages are 
still their sworn enemies. 

A chapel was in due time erected at Lam-hong-o, and, 
despite my protestation, was namxed " MacKay Church," in 
memory of my father. Many evenings, when I was address- 
ing them, bitter, burning tears rolled down their cheeks as they 
thought of the cold-hearted manner in which they received us 
at fir^. The chapel came to be a place of safety as well as 
of worship. Many nights the women and children, for fear of 
the savages, slept on the tiled floor, while their husbands and 
fathers were out on the sea in their fishing-smacks. The 
savages were very artful and daring. Sometimes they would 
make marks in the sand in imitation of turtle tracks, so that 
when any villager went hunting the turtles they would spring 
from their ambush and run him through with their long lances. 
One evening, on going toward the gate, I heard in the hedge 
a whistling noise. Hastily stepping back, I learned that a 
dozen savages were outside ; but my sudden movement made 
them think they were discovered, and so they decamped. 

In 1884, at one village near the sea where we had a teacher, 
but as yet no chapel, the people had to guard their families 
nightly with loaded guns. On the occasion of one of oiu" vis- 
its the savages were out on a head-hunting expedition, and 
the converts, men, women, and children, sat up till daybreak, 
and at intervals made the hills ring with our sweet hymns, sung 
to their wild mountain airs. The savages prowled around and 
occasionally threw stones and other missiles. While there I 
cut out of a man's thigh an iron arrow-head that had been 
shot from the bow of a savage. It was embedded nearly five 
inches in the flesh, and as it had been there for four months it 
was an ugly sight. The poor fellow sat day after day watch- 


ing it slowly corrupting, and suiTering increasing pain. I had 
surgical instruments with me, and, after two hours, succeeded 
in performing J:he operation. When the arrow-head was re- 
moved and laid on the man's hand his gratitude knew no 
bounds. He was at that time a heathen, but he listened to 
the message of a Saviour who "healeth all our diseases, and 
bindeth up our wounds," and it was dehghtful in after-years 
to hear him tell the heathen around how he was led to forsake 
idolatry and worship the living and true God. 

Sin-sia is a Pe-po-hoan village with quite a percentage of 
Chinese. On the bank of a clear mountain stream stands our 
chapel, called " Burns's Church." Beautiful is the situation, 
and the structure is worthy of the site. It is built of stone, 
plastered, and well lighted with glass windows. I drew the 
plans, but the construction was superintended by a native 
preacher, Tan He. It is extremely difficult to get a building 
erected in Formosa for the sum specified in the contract ; but 
so shrewdly did Tan He do his work that there were no ex- 
tras. The splendid donation from Mrs. MacKay, of Detroit, 
suflficed to complete the building in memory of one of the 
world's greatest evangelists and missionaries. The preacher 
is Pe-po-hoan, and both aborigines and Chinese meet for the 
worship of the God of all the earth. 

Nearly south of Tai-tun "Mountain, and nestling at its base, 
is Pak-tau, a Pe-po-hoan village, with upward of a hundred 
aborigines in the homesteads around. It is two hours' brisk 
walk from Tamsui, three from Bang-kah, and four from Sek- 
khau. We secured a place of worship there in 1 89 1 . Sulphur- 
springs hiss and roar ia the vicinity, and a warm medicinal 
stream runs within five minutes' walk from our chapel. I had 
in view the establishing of a church there fully fifteen years 
ago, for we lanew somethmg of the value of the springs. 
Scabies can be completely cured by bathing in these waters ; 
and tinea, in various forms, can be so far removed that other 


medicines eradicate the fungi or bacilli with greater effi- 

In conducting a mission few things require more attention 
than the placing* of the right man in the right place. Who, 
then, should be sent to Pak-tau ? Why, an able, earnest Chi- 
nese preacher whose wife was a Pe-po-hoan, whom we brought 
up from childhood, and who received careful Christian instruc- 
tion. Success attended the young preacher's mission work. 
One Sabbath, my wife, three children, women from the Girls' 
School, and students from the college attended service at Pak- 
tau. They found the building literally packed, and scores in 
the branches of a tree where they could both see and hear. 
It was a great day, and the speakers were carefully selected. 
First came one who had been a Tauist priest, because many 
of his old associates were present ; thep a Pe-po-hoan from the 
east coast and another from one of our southern stations, be- 
cause their relatives were among the hearers ; then four Pe-po- 
hoan women whose homes were in Kap-tsu-lan rose and sang 
"Jesus loves me," because their Malayan sisters were sitting 
near by ; six Chinese Bible-women sang another hymn, because 
Mongolians were listening. Such a variety made the services 
both interesting and profitable. Each hearer got a suitable 
portion of the bread of life. I addressed them on Joshua 
xxiv. 15: "Choose you this day whom ye will serve," and 
called on them to decide for or against the world's mighty 
Redeemer. A few weeks afterward ten young Pe-po-hoan 
women who became interested in the way of salvation went 
out to Tamsui to see the Girls' School, Oxford College, and 
the museum. Agreeable and intelligent, they showed a lively 
interest in all that they saw. The work at Pak-tau goes on 

Touring in the Kap-tsu-lan plain is full of interest, but one 
trip is m.uch like another. Variety is sometimes given by the 
company of some European traveler or scientist. In 1888, 


Dr. Warburg, from Hamburg, Germany, joined us at Kelung 
for a tour. He was a young naturalist collecting specimens 
for his college, and he procured many plants and flowers, and 
many relics and weapons belongmg to the aborigines. He 
had an open eye for mission work, and was greatly interested 
when more than three hundred assembled for worship. As 
we marched inward to newly reclaimed valleys, upward of 
thirty tattooed savages from the mountains presented them- 
selves and were photographed. At one aboriginal village, near 
a mountain-spur, fully five hundred of our converts met, and 
we had a glorious gathering. When we were parting the 
doctor said : 

" I have seen sixteen chapels, and people in them worship- 
ing God. I have also seen native preachers standing on plat- 
forms preaching the truths of Christianity. I never saw any- 
thing like it before. If people in Hamburg saw what I- have 
seen they would contribute for foreign missions. If scientific 
skeptics had traveled with a missionary as I have, and wit- 
nessed what I have witnessed on this plain, they would assume 
a different attitude toward the heralds of the cross." 



Setting out — Eager for a chapel — Ordinances and sacraments — Afloat — . 
Beauties of the ocean — In sight of savages — In Ki-lai — The cook, 
preacher — Burning the idols — Five hundred — A perilous pull — A 
sample program — Edification — Glengarry Chapel — In a new plain — 
Home again 

ON August 27, 1890, at 8 a.m., I set out from Tamsui, with 
Tan He, Sun-a, and Koa Kau, on a trip far down the. 
east coast of Formosa. The reason for never traveling with- 
out several students or preachers is that tliey may become 
practically acquainted with all departments of mission work, 
efiicient in service, and prepared for all emergencies. The 
work is divided, and each has his allotted task. Our purpose 
on this trip was to visit chapels in the Kap-tsu-lan plain, and 
to go farther south to another plain, where a number of Pe-po- 
hoan families have settled. That south district is the Ki-lai 
plain, and is the home of about four thousand semi-civilized 
aborigines called Lam-si-hoan. Of life among that people we 
will speak in another chapter. In this attention will be directed 
to the Pe-po-hoan villages. 

We took a steam-launch up the river to Bang-kah, railway- 
train to Tsui-tng-kha, and walked the rest of the distance to 
Kelung. Sun-a, who is a most dexterous tooth-extractor, 
practised his profession on a number of patients by the way. 
At Kelung a service was held. Next morning we passed 
Ki-a-liau, withvChhim-o Mountain rising twenty-eight hun- 









dred feet high, and extending its base, rough with recently 
fallen boulders, to the water's edge. Traveling was very dan- 
gerous, owing to the loosened rocks overhead and the wet and 
slippery stones beneath. Once I disturbed a mass by leaping 
over a chasm, and it came tumbling down at my heels. To- 
ward evening we turned a point and were in full view of Lam- 
a-lin, a fishing-village with thirty or forty families. Lim Kau 
Pau, the head roan and owner of the entire range of hills 
around, came out to welcome us. There was no chapel there, 
but we sang and preached. In the morning Mr. Lim took us 
over his estate, and, pointing to one place here and another 
there, he would say, " That would be a nice site for a chapel." 
It meant something for that Chinese landowner to make such 
an offer, for he knew what a chapel meant. He knew that 
idols aad tablets would be cast away. When we were leaving 
the village he ordered out two boats to carry us down the 
coast past a difficult and dangerous promontory. On return- 
ing from this trip, as we neared his homestead, his servants 
came out yelling, running, and beckoning to us, followed by 
his son, who begged us to remain overnight. We could not 
wait, but that evening the son and the servants followed us to 
the Teng-siang-khoe chapel. Is there not an "open door" at 

That day at Phi-thau the villagers pleaded for a chapel. 
Before leaving, medicines were dispensed, teeth extracted, and 
then the gospel was preached to a large crowd. Off again 
through bamboo-groves, across " the point " to Na-tang. We 
reached " Burns's Church," Sin-sia, about dark, and spent an 
hour singing, .speaking, and examining inquirers. The next 
day being the Sabbath, we held three evangelistic services, had a 
Sabbath-school, and dispensed the Lord's Supper. Another 
day's tramp brought us to Ta-ma-ien, a Pe-po-hoan village, 
where thirty-nine communed, four infants were baptized, and 
an elder and deacon were ordained, 


A river-boat took us near Hoan-sia-thau on Tuesday, Sep- 
tember 2, 1890, at 10 A.M. Beating of the drum brought men 
from their nets, women from their looms, and children from 
their play. At once we attended to the suffering, examined 
inquirers, listened to recitations, ordained two office-bearers, 
addressed hearers, and administered the sacrament to forty-one 
communicants. After dinner we crossed a narrow strip of 
sand to the sea and entered a fishing-boat with eight rowers. 
They pulled with great energy, and by sundown entered the 
mouth of a mountain stream, then rowed on the fresh water till 
8 P.M., when we landed at the Lau-lau-a chapel. Services soon 
began, and at the close a young couple stood up, attended by 
two others, and by the ceremony of Christian marriage were 
made husband and wife. This event was unexpected, for the 
bride arrived only an hour before from another Pe-po-hoan vil- 
lage. At daybreak a fishing-outfit was engaged. We put out 
in the face of a heavy sea and brisk gale. We were tossed 
about all day, and could not enter So Bay harbor till 4 p.m. 
Once there no time was lost in addressing our people at Lam- 
hong-o chiu-ch, and in securing a boat suitable for oiu" trip 
beyond. The only available one was about twelve feet long 
and quite open. This little craft we manned with six Pe-po- 
hoan rowers, all Christians, and pushed away at 5 p.m., sing- 
ing a hymn, while preacher and converts stood on the shore 
waving us God-speed. 

Once round the point, away down the coast the rowers 
pulled, hugging the shore. Night came on, but no one thought 
of sleep. Each selected a spot in which to sit or crouch, and 
be out of the rowers' way. I sat in the stem beside the helms- 
man — a good position for surveying the scene. It is grand 
at any time, but that night it was sublime. Long and high 
ranges of forest-clad mountains stood like dark perpendicular 
walls on the right. On the left lay a broad and boundless 
expanse of water. Stars were twinkhng briUiantly above; 


Medusa, Nereidce, and Infitsoria, children of the ocean, were 
blazing below. I have seen many wonderful sights in the 
steamer's track in the Bay of Bengal and the Arabian Sea, 
but never before witnessed anything comparable to the phos- 
phorescent glory of that night. Sitting low in the boat, on a 
level with the surface, I scooped out handfuls of jelly-like 
globules, my fingers like so many rods of red-hot iron, drop- 
ping balls of molten fire. Countless millions of Nodiluca 
miliaris rose to the surface with lightning speed, then darted 
hither and thither, like sparks from a blacksmith's anvil. Oars 
scattered jets of light at very stroke, and our little craft seemed 
gliding on a glittering surface and through flames of amber 

and gold. 

" Within the shadow of the ship 
I watched their rich attire — 
Blue, glossy green, and velvet black ; 
They coiled and swam, and every track 
Was a flash of golden fire." 

Now and then westerly winds blew between long ranges 
and filled our httle sail. By dawn we were close to the shore, 
where stretches a long level piece of ground. Savages were 
at the beach, and their houses could be seen a short distance 
up the mountain-side. Our boat was quickly headed seaward. 
I recognized the place at once — the " spur," the creek, the 
rocks. It was the spot where, on June 4, 1876, H. B. M. 
man-of-war " Lapwing " dropped anchor on the rough sea, 
while her commander, chief officer, and myself got into one 
of her hfeboats, manned by six "blue-jackets," without any 
weapon of defense, and were rowed toward the shore. Sev- 
eral hundred savages came down the spur of the mountain 
and watched us. Our boat tried hard to land, but the surf 
was against us. We hailed, beckoned, and threw several shin- 
ing silver dollars toward them. They were naked and vicious- 
looking, but no one dreamed of danger — only to land and see 


them. The surf saved us. Had we succeeded in landing no 
one would have returned. Many an unsuspecting explorer 
has been murdered there by that tribe. God holds the winds 
and the waves in his hand, and was behind the surf that day. 

We pulled away, and at noon, under the scorching sun, 
thermometer 120 in the open boat, we drew up at Hoe-Iien- 
kang, a trading-post at the sea in the Ki-lai plain. This is 
the plain I longed to visit during the past, where Kap-tsu-lan 
people moved, and where a cook from Oxford College went 
of his own accord, and began to teach and preach to the 
Pe-po-hoan. Hoe-lien-kang lies on a sea-washed sand-bank, 
and has two rows of thatched houses, with a street two hun- 
dred feet wide. Its inhabitants are mostly Chinese, with a few 
Pe-po-hoan families in the outskir*:s, engaged in trade with the 
aborigines. Close at hand is an encampment of Chinese sol- 
diers under a military official. 

Our boat was no sooner hauled on the pebbly beach than a 
Chinese oificer, the head man, sent ar invitation to have dinner 
with him, and showed us other attentions. I was surprised to 
hear my name on every hand. We were never there before, 
but some of them knew about our work in the north. Our 
new friend ordered his hostler to saddle- a pony, and of course 
put on the string of bells. Thus the unexpected did happen, 
for I rode a fine, plump, if not fiery steed, preceded by a groom. 
About dark we entered Ka-le-oan, the Pe-po-hoan settlement I 
longed to visit for upward of a dozen years. We found the 
cook who turned out preacher in a small grass-covered bam- 
boo dwelling that had been erected for him. As they had 
l)een writing and waiting for us a long time, the warmth of 
their welcome can hardly be imagined. The room was soon 
packed and a large crowd stood in front of the door. Instead 
of continued preaching, we tried to grasp the state of affairs. 
Really good work had been done by the cook-preacher. Not 
a few had a clear idea of the gospel message, while many 


more were evidently weary of idol-worship. They seemed ripe 
for decisive action. Being told that the military mandarin 
declared that they must continue idolatry as being a token of 
subjection to China, I rode up to the encampment, had an 
interview, and got a gracious reception. Whatever was said 
or d^ne in the past, it was all right now. Soldiers began to 
praise our mission : one had got medicine from me at Tamsui, 
one from a preacher at Kelung, and another knew the Bang- 
kah preacher. \ amen men joined, praising the men, the 
museum, etc. There was only one opinion, and the officer 
wished me " peace." I galloped back, and asked all who were 
for the true God to clean their houses of idols and take a de- 
cided stand. A council was held at dark in an open space ; 
it turned out to be a noisy and boisterous meeting. The 
chiefs were declaiming aloud in their native tongue. I stepped 
among them and asked an explanation, and if there were differ- 
ence of opinion. An answer came quickly. The five villages 
were unanimous to a man. They wanted to worship the 
Jehovah-God. They went further. An idol-temple built for 
themselves at a cost of two thousand dollars was handed over 
for chapel services. The following was a joyous day. No 
one went to work. The head man invited our party to join 
him, and ordered four boys to follow, carrying eight baskets, 
one on either end of a pole. We then went from house to 
house and from village to village, until the idolatrous para- 
phernalia of all were collected into the baskets and carried 
to a yard near the temple. There was a large pile of mock- 
money, idols, tablets, incense-sticks, and flags. A great crowd 
assembled, and several vied with one another in firing the 
heap. Many showed their contempt for the dirty, dusty, 
greasy old idols. One chief took special delight in poking 
the burning objects of worship, while roars of derisive laugh- 
ter followed the pulling out and holding up of a blazing 
" goddess of mercy." The temple was Hghted up long before 


dark, and the people crowded in, I called on all to join in 

singing : 

" All people that on earth do dwell, 
Sing to the Lord with cheerful voice." 

Precision of attack may have been wanting, some voices may 
have been off the key and out of tune, but they sang with 
heart and soul, and never was the old Hundredth Psalm more 
fittingly sung than on that night when it signalized the conse- 
cration of an idol-temple to the honor and glory of the eternal 

Ka-le-oan is the name given to the settlement, no doubt 
after one of the same name in Kap-tsu-lan, whence most of 
the people hail. There are five villages : Toa-sia, which means 
"large village," where the church now stands; Tek-a-na, Bu- 
loan, lan-ko, and Chhit-kiet — in all about five hundred. This 
is the entry in the record of our trip to that settlement : 

'■ Nearly five hundred idolaters cleaned their houses of idols 
in our presence. 

"They declared themselves anxious to worship the Lord 
and Redeemer. 

" They gave a temple built for idols as a house in which 
to meet and worship the only living and true God. Are 
missions a failure? " 

For an entire week the pony and groom were at my dis- 
posal, without charge, and I went this way and that through 
the Ki-lai plain, preaching, dispensing, tooth-extracting, and 
studying the rude life and manners of the Lam-si-hoan. On 
Wednesday, September loth, we made ready to return north- 
ward. We gave medicines in the militar)' encampment, by 
permission of the official. The mandarin himself threw off all 
mandarin ceremony, and talked, laughed, handled the forceps, 
and had his teeth examined. He even stood at our backs to 
see us attending to the sick and suffering among tlie soldiers. 


There were not a few malaria patients among them, and I am 
quite sure we left the soldiers and their general all wishing for 
our speedy return. 

A crowd followed us to the seaside and shoved our craft 
afloat. The rowers had to pull hard against a northeaster. 
At dark we were skirting the shore near the steep mountains. 
Here and there, hke flaming beacons along the shore, the 
night fires of savages burned holes in the darkness of tangled 
foliage and forest. All night long the rowers struggled against 
wind and wave, afraid to go too near the shore, for the rocks 
were sharp and the savages cruel ; afraid to launch out into 
the deep, for our craft was light and the sea was wild. Morn- 
ing came, and, drenched and weary, we were still amid white 
billows. All that day we pulled almost in vain, thankful that 
we were not dashed on the rocky ledges. No one had tested 
food since the previous morning, for though we had a supply 
of rice we could not land to have it cooked. The weary 
rowers were fast becoming weak. Eyes brightened when at 
3 P.M. we turned a point and ran into a basin three hundred feet 
wide, one hundred feet deep, with fifty feet of a pebbly beach, 
and a perpendicular wall several hundred feet high standing 
at the back and sides. There was a veritable security from 
storms and savages. A sweet spring of water tumbled over 
the high cliff above, forming a stream of fresh water, which 
ran into the bitter sea. Rice was cooked in the water-jar I 
was carrying back as a sample of Lam-si-hoan pottery, and 
with a condiment of salted venison it was a delicious meal. 
By 7 P.M. the sea calmed somewhat, and we struck out again. 
Toward cock-crowing So Bay was entered, and a breath car- 
ried us to Lam-hong-o. Soon preacher and people were astir, 
and all day was spent in the chapel. Children were examined, 
three were baptized, and sixty-five sat down around the Lord's 
table. By sea -boat we ran to Ka-le-oan, there gave medicines 
to the sick, inquired after members, arranged matters with 


elders and deacons, and walked over to Lau-lau-a, where simi- 
lar work was done and the night spent. 

Leaving Lau-lau-a, we visited every station in the Kap-tsu- 
lan plain, spent a night at each of -the twenty chapels, and 
inspected work at six other points. We never traveled there 
before as on this occasion. Taking a river-boat, we rowed, 
where practicable, to each locahty. Thus I had a fair chance 
of making a pretty accurate map^ The streams rush rapidly 
near the mountains, but run sluggishly enough in the level 
plain. At many points they are so narrow that the boat had 
to be pushed along with two bamboo poles. On these narrow 
dark streams, with trees and bushes overhanging and meeting, 
charming spots could be seen through the foliage, and the 
sun shone at intervals through the clouds floating overhead. 

Arriving at and leaving a Pe-po-hoan village was simply soul- 
inspiring. As our party would start a hymn, a crowd of men, 
women, and children would join and make the banks resound 
with joyful notes. I always enjoy this a thousand times more 
than singing in a chapel. It is so grand, so free from for- 
mality, thus to praise our God on the flowing water, among the 
trees, and within hearing of the birds he makes to sing. It 
would be wearisome to the reader to give the names of so 
many strange places and state what was done at each ; but a 
sample of our program may be of interest. 

1. On arrival we visited the sick in their homes ; then, taking 
our stand outside in an open space, we gave medicines and 
extracted teeth. The filthy betel-nut gives tooth-extracting 
prominence. The four of us worked, but each patient passed 
through my hands for diagnosis. 

2. We wrote the names of all the families, with their worldly 
possessions, in a book. This was necessary on account of re- 
movals to new settlements. I think we know the circumstances 
of every family, and what the stations are able to do toward 















3. We held meetings with the elders and deacons concerning 
contributions, chapel repairs, Sabbath attendance, etc. Here 
is progress. Every chapel in the plain was either re-roofed, 
plastered, and otherwise repaired, or materials were on the- 
ground ; and only in one village did an elder ask for assistance. 

4. Children, young men and women, were examined in pres- 
ence of all on subjects previously assigned, arid other subjects 
to be studied were selected. 

5. Singing practised for an hour by the people in divisions, 
such as old men, women, young men, girls, and children. 

6. We preached in turn, short addresses being most profit- 
able, and I immediately questioned them on what was spoken. 

7. Office-bearers elected by the congregations, and I or- 
dained them. 

8. Baptized infants and adults, though the reception of 
many adults was delayed for further instruction. 

g. Observed the Lord's Supper, having not a few refreshing 

The above labor was accomplished, and much more. The 
effect at every station was marked. Converts were stirred 
up, and the contrast in their condition and demeanor on our 
arrival and at our departure was very marked, especially where 
we remained overnight and had opportunity for meetings, 
afternoon, evening, and morning. There is a world of mean- 
ing in the words "edification," "building up," "grow up into 
Him in all things," "for the perfecting of the saints." I have 
stated that at one place nearly five hundred cast their idols 
away. Some good people may think the work among them 
was about done then. If I know anything about it, if twenty- 
three years' experience be of value, then I should say the work 
was only begun. Paul knows best, and says they must be 
built up. I do nofbeheve in perfection on this side of the 
"river," but such converts as we have in Formosa, like some 
we have in America, are a long way from what is attainable 


here. Many things are needed in leading them on. One 
thing before all things else is needful, viz., patience. 

One of the churches visited was " Glengarry Chapel," at 
Tang-mng-thau, where a spreading gourd served as a dispens- 
ing-room. At the service all were orderly and reverent. We 
sang many hymns, and I told them about Glengarry in Can- 
ada, and the kind young friends there who raised the money 
for the building of that chapel. They were greatly interested, 
and the thought that people at home would deny themselves 
for poor heathen in far Formosa was not without its influence. 

Leaving Kap-tsu-lan, we entered the plain of Toa-o, which 
is a triangular extension running far inland from Kap-tsu-lan, 
flanked on two sides by high, steep, densely wooded moun- 
tains. It is new ground, only now being reclaimed from the 
jungle. The reeds are cut with knives, then the whole. set on 
fire, large hoes dig the roots, farmers sow or plant their grairt, 
and in this way much is cleared. Houses are built in a few 
days. Poles are put- in the ground, a thatched roof put on, 
sides closed in with reeds, plastered with mud, a door of split 
bamboo tied to one side, holes left instead of windows, and the 
family move in. At times it is dangerous to travel in any part 
of that plain, on account of savages who have been driven fo 
desperation by Chinese soldiers. On arrival at the east end 
we called on one Colonel Tan, an old friend, who persisted in 
sending a number of men with spears to escort us by the way. 
The night was spent at Phoa-po-o, where one hundred assem- 
bled and we preached the gospel. The morning following was 
lovely, and, according to every day's work, men were armed 
to lead the way to a new village through reeds and grasses. 
No one goes out to work without weapons at his side. Forty 
odd-looking fellows went along with us, several of whom had 
Martini-Henry or Remington rifles, some carried old Ameri- 
can muskets, the most swung over their shoulders Chinese 
matchlocks, and others held long spears in readiness. Four 


times the number of savages would have had to flee before 
them that day. The Pe-po-hoan welcomed us at Teng-phoa- 
po-o. We followed our usual program and set off with half 
the village at our heels. At length we came to Thien-sang-pi, 
the most inland settlement in all that region. People are only 
beginning to test the virgin soil and erect huts. 

We walked half a mile farther, mostly through wet grass, to 
the rather sharp curve in the mountain. There I got up into 
a tallow-tree out of the wet rushes and sat on a large branch, 
admiring a pool of water in the bend which no foreigner ever 
gazed upon before. Crescent Pool is an appropriate name for 
it. It is full of nearly a dozen varieties of fish, and the marshy 
land around has eels thirty and forty pounds in weight. Two 
savage villages were visited, one at the base and the other on 
the spur of the mountain. Old and young looked dissipated 
and haggard. 

At Cheng-kui-sia upward of one hundred met outside, and 
we had an open-air service, then crossed several streams, and 
walked through rice-fields to Ang-chha-na, where three times 
the bricks were made for a chapel and destroyed by the rain. 
Being quite within the mountains, they have very few dry days. 
At dark oil was put into bamboo poles six feet long, stuck in 
an open space, and in that flickering light we proclaimed the 
message of salvation to a crowd of poor toil-worn aborigines. 

Thus we labored in that plain, taking all the chapels in order, 
then back over the hills to Kelung, Tsui-tng-kha, Bang-kah, 
Toa-tm-tia, and out again to Tamsui, after an absence of forty 
days. It was one of many such tours, not much different in 
experiences and results from others. If the reader has gained 
a more accurate idea of the lights and shadows of mission- 
ary life, and if hearts are stirred up to more earnest prayer and 
more consecrated service, the recital will not have been in vain. 



Refused accommodation — Ordered out — Invited back — A plot — The trai- 
tor — Building a chapel 

ON the west coast are settlements of aborigines that have 
made considerable progress in Chinese civilization. They 
are called Sek-hoan ("ripe barbarians "). On one of our visits 
to Sin-kang, a village of these civilized aborigines in the Biau- 
lek district, on the west coast, three days' walk from Tamsui, 
and as many miles from the sea, the people refused us accom- 
modation for the night. At dark, however, a stalwart-looking 
native made provision for myself and students under his 
thatched roof. On inquiry we learned that preparations were 
being made for worshiping the spirits of their ancestors. Their 
own savage customs and superstitions had been mingled with 
those of the Chinese, with the result that no outsider could be 
allowed within the precincts for three days. Accordingly our 
host was urged to expel us ; but though he stood alone he re- 
fused. Later on a letter was handed me from the head man. 
It read thus : 

" You black-bearded barbarian, with your Chinese disciples, 
must either leave in the morning or stay in the house for three 

After a while I sent this reply : 

" We the servants of the Lord Jesus Christ will neither 
leave in the morning nor stay in the house, but by the power 



of our God we will preach his gospel in your streets on the 
morrow and following days." 

Immediately the whole village was greatly excited, and 
many gathered around the place where we were. Some were 
for kiUing, sonie for beating, and others for leaving us alone. 
The counsel of the last prevailed. Morning dawned, and I 
told my students to choose between remaining or going back 
to the north. In a moment they were at my side, ready to 
abide all consequences. We walked into the streets and 
found villagers in groups, squatted on the ground, with stones 
and other missiles in readiness. They were true pictures of 
men with pent-up rage, and with vehement grunts did they 
denounce us. A stone thrown by a young man passed the 
shoulder of a student and grazed my head. We sang several 
hymns and»then returned to the house. On the second day 
we were out again, and on the third. On the fourth day a 
number came near us and spoke somewhat friendly. They felt 
not a little ashamed of their conduct, which feeling was never 
overcome ; for not once in subsequent years did they refer to 
our first reception. Once converted to the religion of Jesus, 
the man who threw that stone became a student, traveling 
over moimtain and valley with us, acquiring knowledge, and 
later a preacher laboring in Kap-tsu-lan, till he fell a victim 
while bravely nursing suffering ones during an epidemic. 

Weeks rolled by, and I was approached at Tamsui by two 
men from Sin-kang, with an earnest request to visit them and 
preach the gospel. We accompanied them back, and ere long 
had a chapel in course of erection. When the walls, which 
were built of sun-dried bricks, were five feet high, a rum- 
bling noise was heard and the earth shook with convulsions. 
The earthquake left the building leaning over. Unfortunate 
omen! "The earth is against them, and the spirits opposed," 
shouted some, and all resolved to unite to quash our proceed- 
ings at once. Every hamlet and town within miles joined in 


the cry, and excitement ran so high that danger and death 
threatened us every moment. We maintained our position, 
however, finished the thatched chapel, and proclaimed Christ, 
and him crucified, night after night to upward of a hundred 

One Sabbath afternoon, when engaged in service, a letter 
was put on the table before me. I was therein warned not to 
enter savage territory again or death would be the result. Our 
plans were previously arranged to enter the next day. At 
cock-crowing we were on the march. When on the top of the 
first mountain-range a piercing yell told of savages at hand, 
and at a stream in the valley below we met more than fifty of 
them. Salutations were exchanged. The wild mountaineers 
pointed their guns upward, fired a volley, and bade us follow 
them. They welcomed us to their mountain retreat, where we 
spent the night, and they were entirely friendly. The origin of 
the letter warning us against the savages remained a mystery 
for years. But when on my last visit to that village, before re- 
tvuning to Canada in 1893, the mystery was solved. A man 
of eighty years of age, Ap Hoan, confessed that he wrote it, 
and that he urged to the utmost the savages to waylay and 
kill us. They not only refused, but in time forced him and 
his family beyond the domain of their tribe. There being evi- 
dence of his conversion, I baptized him at his own request, 
and along with him two others who, like him, had passed the 
limit of fourscore years. 

This uncultivated valley was gradually transformed into rice 
and potato fields. A chapel was built, and has served as a 
center for work in that region. From that village trips are 
made into savage territory. There are about one thousand 
Sek-hoan at Sin-kang, and in all points work there is similar 
to work among other semi-civilized aborigines. 



The Ki-lai plain — A tropical scene — Racial marks — Government — Agri- 
culture— Pottery-making — The village -well — Architecture — A simple 
costume — A novel shade — Tobacco and betel — A public bath — Morals 
and manners — Forecast 

THE Ki-lai plain, far down the east coast of Formosa, is 
the home of about four thousand aborigines who have 
been subdued by the Chinese, but who are scarcely started on 
the road to civihzation. To this plain I have made several 
trips, and have learned not a little about the people. On my 
first visit I had the use of the pony already referred to, and 
enjoyed many a ride over the broad, clean, winding roads. 

The plain is about thirty miles long from north to south, and 
about six miles in width between the mountains and the sea. 
It was formed out of mountain debris carried down by the 
streams, and sands washed up by the waves. Along the shore 
is a stretch of sand, and back of this an upland, upon which 
more than a thousand water-buffaloes find pasture. Farther 
inland the soil is light, and in places stony, but suitable for 
grazing purposes. The land nearer the mountains is a rich, 
deep black loam, mostly of decomposed vegetable matter 
washed down from the densely wooded mountains. The beds 
of the mountain torrents reveal that up in the country of the 
savages, where the explorer dare not go, there are granite, coal, 
slate, and mica. 



This plain is by far the most tropical-looking place I have 
ever seen on the island. The roads are remarkably good and 
evidently receive not a little care. On either side large ever- 
green shade-trees sometimes grow, and every mile or so rest- 
ing-places are made of bamboo sticks, upon which burdens are 
laid while the carriers sit down, eat betel-nut, and rest. The 
scenery is refreshing after the narrow paths, paddy-fields, and 
inevitable water-buffaloes of the north. There is an acre of 
mountain-rice that needs no artificial irrigation ; next is a 
patch of taro, then wild indigo, watermelons, sweet potatoes, 
golden pumpkins, the climbing bean, and, not least welcome, 
beautiful green grass. In the fields grow rows of pride-of- 
India trees, and at intervals are erected small square .shade- 
huts. The birds sing among the branches, the sun shines 
overhead, and one feels " the wild joys of living." 

The inhabitants of this plain, where " every prospect pleases," 
are perhaps the latest arrivals of the aborigines of Formosa. 
Like the other tribes, both civilized and savage, they are allied 
to the Malayan race, and in some respects show even more 
strongly marked likeness to the present-day islanders in the 
Archipelago. Their dialect is pecuHar, and quite distinct from 
the Pe-po-hoan and the mountain savages. They are entirely 
ignorant of the Chinese language, and have themselves no lit- 
erature of any sort. Chinese authority is acknowledged, and 
an encampment of Chinese soldiers under a military mandarin 
is stationed in the plain ; but the people do not shave their 
heads or wear the cue. The old men have their hair short ; 
but some of the younger generation are imbibing other notions, 
and are quite proud of their long black locks parted in the 

Their government is tribal, or perhaps their companies might 
be called clans. All the men are divided into ranks, on the 
principle of seniority. There are nine such companies : the 
first being composed of all the men from fifty-five to sixty years 







of age ; the second of those from fifty to fifty-five ; and so on 
down to the ninth company, made up of the youths from fif- 
teen to twenty. Every five years the senior company is re- 
tired and a new one formed. On a day appointed a contest 
of nmning a mile and back decides who is to be chief of the 
new company. The chief of the whole tribe is chosen in a con- 
test among the chiefs of the .several cornpanies. Each com- 
pany is subject to the one above it in rank, and to each some 
special task is assigned. One company makes roads, another 
tills the soil, a third attends to the wicker-work, and other de- 
partments have each a company to carry them on. When any 
special work has to be done, such as hunting, harvesting, fight- 
ing, several companies may combine. Inferiors in age and 
rank are all under control of superiors. In case of an offense 
being committed superiors drive the offenders out of the village, 
and they dare not return until after six days, on pain of being 
beaten, having their property destroyed and family driven out, 
and they themselves exiled from the village until called back. 
One evening at Ka-le-oan a dozen fine, strong fellows were 
performing tricks and feats for their own and my entertain- 
ment, when three of their superiors appeared, and the young 
men bounded out of sight in a moment, thus signifying ready 
obedience and fear. The inferior company was out on a hunt- 
ing-expedition, and when the superiors saw these young fel- 
lows taking it easy instead of sharing with their comrades the 
trials of the chase, they were very angry and drove them from 
the village in punishment. A day or two afterward word 
came that three of the tribe had been killed "by the savages, 
and then the young men were summoned back to go on the 

The rich soil is pretty thoroughly worked, the farmers being 
hard-working and industrious. Mountain-rice, millet, and taro 
are grown extensively, and fine sweet potatoes, Indian corn, 
beans, watermelons, and small pumpkins. The short-handled 


hoe is the chief implement, and is used in the fields very dex- 
terously. Wherever they learned the art, there are in that tribe 
blacksmiths able to do all the making and mending required. 

Pottery is manufactured, both the mixing and moulding being 
done by the hand. At Sa-ka-eng, in the north, the Chinese pot- 
ters use a horizontal wheel, like the people in Palestine ; and 
Thomson's description in " The Land and the Book " accu- 
rately describes the Chinese process. But these Lam-si-hoan 
pottery-makers do not belong to that school ; they use neither 
mould nor wheel. The clay is dug up, pounded in a wooden 
trough vvith a stone, and mixed with water. A lump is then 
taken and bit by bit added, made into the required shape, and 
then smoothed with the hand and water. The jars are similar 
in shape to those made in Syria and Judea, but not so high, and 
have an " ear " on each side for the hand. They are always 
carried on the head; if empty they are inverted, the mouth, 
which is about six inches across, fitting like a cap. Twenty or 
thirty women returning along the road from the village well, 
talking, laughing, singing, their figures well developed, their 
carriage erect, their hands hanging at their sides, each with a 
filled water- jar on her head, make a picture that even a weary- 
eyed globe-trotter turns to see. 

The people live mainly in villages. Each village is sur- 
rounded by stately bamboo-trees, and inclosing all is a deep 
moat or ditch. On entering the large gate into the village 
there, on one side, stands a long open shed of bamboo, in 
which a number of men sit, making various kinds of wicker- 
work and discussing questions of the day. Near at hand, 
shaded by large trees, is the village well, a circular hole twenty 
feet deep, fully a hundred feet in diameter at the mouth, and 
narrowing down to two or three at the bottom. At one point 
the side is cut down, making a more gradual slope, up which 
the earth had been carried, and which now serves as a path 
down to the water. Around the moUth of the well and down 


this incline a railing of bamboo is run. All day long the 
women come and go with their water-jars on their heads, get- 
ting their supply from this general reservoir. 

The houses are all after one design, entirely different from 
the Chinese, and in the matter of floor distincdy superior. 
Each house is about fifty feet long, twenty feet wide, twelve 
feet high at the ridge, and sloping down to about four feet at 
the eaves. Boards are lashed with rattan to a sort of balloon 
frame. The grass roof is fully two feet thick, and projects over 
the eave^ three or four feet, making a kind of low veranda. 
The building is constructed with regard not so much to the 
comfort and convenience of the inhabitants as to the power and 
destructiveness of the typhoons, which sweep over the plain 
every year. Every house is floored with rattan about an inch 
thick, laid close together and bound or laced with rattan splits. 
This makes a strong, neat, and clean floor,.and, being raised a 
foot above the ground, is much healthier than the mud-floors 
of Chinese houses. Indeed, it makes a very comfortable bed, 
and is generally put to that use. At one end of the room a 
space is built up with earth, making the " fireplace." There 
are two doors to the house, one on each side, made of bamboo. 
The houses are not arranged in any particular order, each one 
being quite independent of every other and of any general plan 
or survey. At every door there is at least one ugly dog, al- 
ways lean and hungry. 

A typical Lam-si-hoan costume is simply made and easily 
kept in repair. The women all wear earrings made of bam- 
boo, and generally a kind of waist-cloth. The men are con- 
tent with the earrings, and do not worry if even that sugges- 
tion of clothing be lacking. The women have a fondness for 
necklaces made of shells an inch square, tied together with 
thread and beads. The more extravagant of the young women 
set their hearts on bracelets of brass and other ornaments, which 
they keep bright and shining. Tattooing is not practised by 


any of the tribe, and they are unable to explain the origin of 
the custom among their kinsmen in the mountains, or its dis- 
use among themselves. 

The tropical sun is very hot and the rain heavy, and as a 
protection they have devised a simple but effective shade. 
A frame of light wood is made, three feet long and eighteen 
inches wide, across which the fine tops of reeds are laid, and 
seciured close together with rattan bands. A thin piece of 
board across the middle acts as a support, and to it strings are 
attached, with which the shade is tied around the neck ; and 
in this way it is worn on their shoulders by the workers bend- 
ing over their task in the sun or rain, without interfering with 
their movements or the freedom of their hands. 

Rice is the staple food, and at meal-time the whole family 
squat around a large plate set on the floor, and, not with 
spoons or chopsticks, but with two fingers and the thumb, 
each " takes rice." A piece of raw meat is relished as a sweet 
morsel, and is not cut with a knife, but torn with fingers and 

Tobacco is grown very largely, and the dried leaves are 
rolled as required into huge cigars six or eight inches long and 
about an inch and a half thick. Cigar-smoking and betel-nut 
eating are universal with both sexes. Under the shade of the 
trees, in their houses, by the roadside — everywhere — men and 
women may be seen, singly or in groups, each with a small 
gourd full of lime made from burned sea-shells and coral, and 
bags of tobacco-leaves and betel-nut. Their mouths are dirty, 
disfigured, and seemingly tireless. When walking or resting 
the whole time is employed in preparing or using the betel 
and cigar. The habit is not only unspeakably filthy, but de- 
grading and ruinous to their health. 

But lest one might think them indifferent in the matter of 
cleanhness, one will be taken to see the pubUc baths with which 
some of these villages are provided. I was invited to inspect 


the one at Chhit-kha-chhoan, a village of more than a thou- 
sand people, gathered together at the base of a high, steep 
mountain. A dear, cool stream from a mountain spring is- 
sued from the side of a rock and supplied water for the inhabi- 
tants of the village. The bathing arrangements are very sim- 
ple. Two sets of spht-bamboo spouts, one four feet long, the 
other eight, are erected seven feet high, and convey the water 
out from the side of the rock. From these spouts the pure 
fresh water is pouring all the year round, and there, with noth- 
ing but the sky or clouds for walls or covering, is the public 
bath. But even in that primitive state of society there are 
rules and regulations, and the fixed law at that bathing-place 
is that the men stand under the outer streams and the women 
under the inner. At all hours of the day they are coming and 
going ; the women with their jars, which they first fill and set 
aside ; then they stand, sit, or crouch under the water-streams, 
chuckling and grunting with dehght as the cool water falls upon 
them ; and when they have exhausted that pleasure, or other 
duties call, the jars are raised again, and with heads erect they 
march homeward, singing, it may be, some snatch of song. 

In society constituted as it is among the Lam-si-hoan, neither 
refinement of life nor elegance of manners need be looked for. 
Their hves have not been touched by those great movements 
that have fixed the standard of manners in Christian civiliza- 
tion, and they never indulge those habits of thought and intro- 
spection that awaken self-consciousness and a sense of shame. 
They never heard the name of God, and have no knowledge 
of his grace and truth. The hfe they live is full of toil and 
hardship, and their nature-worship is powerless to redeem or 
sanctify. To their minds, darkened by innumerable supersti- 
tions, the thought of anything unseen that is not to be dreaded 
is hard to grasp. The spirits they believe in are vengeful and 
cruel, and were it not for their direful power would be neglected 
altogether. Without priest or idol or temple, they live in 


bondage to a fear of spirits everywhere, in earth and air and 
sea. To Christianize them would require a distinct and sep- 
arate mission, as their plain is difficult of access, and the voy- 
age down the coast dangerous. With " very much land to be 
possessed " in the more enduring cities and settlements in the 
north, it seemed unwise to e.\pend much of oiu" strength on 
this unstable and vanishing tribe. The aborigines cannot sur- 
vive the commg and presence of the dominant race. The re- 
peating-rifle and spear of the mountain savage on the one side, 
and the unscrupulous greed and destructive vices of the Chinese 
on the other, are making inroads on this people, who have not 
the compensating strength and endurance of either the savage 
or the civilized. 

The future of the Lam-si-hoan is not hard t6 forecast. They 
have httle moral or social recuperative power, and they imbibe 
nothing of the rejuvenating hfe-streams of civilization. Theirs 
is the tragedy of many savage tribes alike in the East and in 
the West : the first touch of the civilized man is the touch of 
death. China's civihzation in the Ki-lai plain is represented 
by the soldier and the trader ; and in their footsteps follow car- 
nal passion and deadly lust. Already- poisonous Uquors and 
corroding licentiousness have begun their havoc, and instead 
of strength and vigor, physical haggardness and wreckage are 
added to intellectual degradation and nioral poverty. 









Of human interest — Personal contact — Trip with Captain Bax — A crafty 
chief — ^^Social organization — Houses — Food — Dress — Tattooing — 
Musical instruments — Marriage — Morality — Religion — Superstition 
— Ascent of Mount Sylvia — Disappointment — On a grave — Hospi- 
tality — Christmas v/iih the savages — Destructive influences — 
Woman's lot — Missionary work 

IT matters little how far removed the civilized may be from 
the savage, or how many generations may have come and 
gone since our ancestors lived in huts and dressed in skins; 
we are all of us interested in the life of those tribes who have 
maintained their wild independence, and with much heroic 
endurance roam the plains or pierce the jungles, scorning the 
sweets of civilization, Hving only for to-day, and counting a 
calamity whatever checks desire or curbs their restless will. 
The savage's will " is the wind's will," and there is a fascina- 
tion about his reckless dash and careless abandon. 

Savage life can be seen in all its hghts and shades in the 
primeval mountain forests of Formosa, How many centuries 
the deer and boar have been hunted among these hills by 
swarthy Malays history does not kn#w. A thousand years is 
as far back as the annals go, but the island was theirs before 
the annals were kept. Save for the encroachments of the 
Chinese, circumscribing their territory and furnishing them 
with the destructive repeating-rifle, these savages in the moun- 
tains are to-day in life and manners what they were ten centu^ 



ries ago. What I have learned of their custcnns and beliefs 
has been through personal contact with them for weeks to- 
gether in their hamlets and villages. There was constant 
danger, for no one can tell how or when the savage nature will 
manifest its savagery ; but intercourse with them was always 
interesting and instructive. 

One year after landing I made an extensive trip into sav- 
age territory in company with Captain Bax, of H. B. M ship 
" Dwarf," who was desirous of seeing the natives in their 
mountain home. Three days' journey from Tamsui a party of 
friendly natives, with their chief, got ready to escort us. We 
were led through many streams, along and over many hills, 
and halted beside a cool spring at the base of a high moun- 
tain-range. After dinner we began to ascend the mountain, 
but it was steep, rugged, and literally covered with rank vege- 
tation. Those in advance had to cut the creepers and other 
growths with long knives, and so difficult was the ascent that 
" the boldest held his breath for a time." Before we reached 
the top, thirty-five hundred feet high, the chief himself com- 
pletely collapsed and had to be hauled up with a long rattan. 
That range was the dividing-line between the Chinese and the 
savages. To penetrate farther was at our peril, but we had 
counted the cost and were resolved on taking the risk. After 
cutting our way over another range we stood on the summit 
of the last, and our leaders shouted. The answer was returned, 
and a party from the tribe in the valley below, with guns, 
spears, bows and arrows, started up in our direction. When 
half-way down we met ^m face to face ; signs were made, 
and we were allowed to pass on, they following closely. Tat- 
tooed women and naked children came out to see the strangers. 

At dark we were in a large valley, where we came upon a 
group of several hundred savages squatting on the ground to- 
gether. A halt was called, and as there were no houses or huts 
to be seen our people started fires, cooked rice, and prepared 


a shelter for the night. Standing around that glowing fire, 
shut in by mountain and forest, those savage chiefs, with their 
wild-eyed braves, heard for the first and perhaps last time the 
solemn strains of David's Hundredth Psalm. The "people" 
understood not, but .the night wind brought back the echoes 
telling that mountain and valley understood and answered the 
call to "sing to the Lord with cheerful voice." The chiefs 
fixed their eyes on us in silence all the while, and when we 
lay down they squatted round the fires. It was too cold for 
us to sleep, and all through the night, like sentinels on duty, 
those savage eyes kept sleepless watch against anything sus- 
picious on the part of the strangers. 

At daybreak we persuaded the chiet and his son to take us 
to see their dwellings. After much hesitation and parleying 
more than thirty started with us. Through jungle, over wind- 
falls, our clothes torn by thorny shrubs, we pushed our way. 
A sound was heard, and looking up a large bird was observed 
perched on a tree. Suddenly all were breathlessly still. The 
old chief crawled up hke a cat, and when under the tree let 
drive a heavy charge from his Chinese matchlock. The beau- 
tiful bird was brought down, put into a bag, and one of the 
men carried it on his shoulder. Captain Bax and I were be- 
ginning to suspect the chief's leading. Presently we came to 
a clearing, and the chief stepped back and told us that there 
were Chinese in the huts, and if we would go around and engage 
them from the open he and his men would attack them from 
the bush, and they could not escape. The old rascal thought 
to make us tools for his head-hunting braves. We were in- 
dignant, and in no mild terms told him that he was not honor- 
able ; that we came far to pay him a visit, and he deceived 
us. They all listened as the interpreter translated, and anger 
gleamed from every eye. Then after a little conversation 
among themselves they seemed mollified ; the chief acknow- 
ledged he was wrong, and promised to take us to their own 


villages. Going in an almost opposite direction we were sur- 
prised to come upon a well-beaten path, winding, to be sure, 
but good for traveling ; and when on the top of a very high 
range we were ordered to halt and remain silent. A peculiar 
shout was raised and immediately answered from another moun- 
tain-top. Going down one range and up another, we saw their 
village, with several hundred men, women, and children gaz- 
ing at us, and half-starved dogs yelping like very devils. Other 
terrible noises, wild and hellish, were explained as the shouts 
of rejoicing at a feast that was being held over a Chinese head 
that had been brought in fresh from the border-land. 

We were invited to a seat, and several to whom I had given 
quinine for malaria the evening we were in the valley came 
forward and claimed me as a friend. We were interested in 
the architecture of their huts, and produced note-books and 
pencils to make sketches. The savages stared at us for a 
while, and when they understood what we were doing they 
began chattering angrily among themselves. The young men 
darted into the huts and reappeared with long iron-headed 
spears. They were wild with rage. Every eye flashed. We 
took in tlje situation and quietly put away our books and pen- 
cils. Gradually the excitement subsided and we tried to ex- 
plain. But no explanation would satisfy. In our ignorance 
we had committed a great offense. They have a superstition 
that making a photograph or picture extracts the essence of a 
thing, and they believed that our innocent sketches would not 
only take the essence out of their houses, but could be used 
to our advantage and to their hurt. We were afterward as- 
sured that had we persisted neither of us would have returned 
to tell the tale. 

That evening we were again in the valley, and when our 
fires were lighted fully five hundred savages from the bush 
gathered round. We made some presents, and then by means 
of an interpreter I told them of the great Father and of Him 


who "died to make us good." Our party sang hymns for an 
hour or two, and with a prayer that the Holy Spirit would seal 
something of our message in those dark heathen hearts we lay 
down to rest. Next day we made our way, through a drench- 
ing rain, down slippery paths, out into the cleared land. We 
had gone farther than white man had ever penetrated before ; 
but on emerging from the bush the captain was prostrated 
with fever and had to be carried back to Tamsui in a sedan. 
I kept up until the first night in my own house, when for the 
first time I felt the dread fever's hands of ice and fire. 

There are many different tribes in these mountains, and 
each tribe has its peculiar features in language, customs, and' 
modes of life ; but all that is distinctive of savage hfe is com- 
mon to each. They usually live in hamlets or villages built 
on the top of a mountain or high upland. The largest village 
I saw had about seven hundred inhabitants ; the average pop- 
ulation is about one hundred and fifty. Each village has a 
head man, and each tribe a chief. The greatest brave, the 
one most gifted to command, is generally chief ; and his son, 
if brave and popular, sometimes succeeds him in office. The 
chief's authority is absolute, but he has a kind of council, 
composed of a half-dozen of the older braves, with whom he 
confers in matters of unusual importance. 

Their houses are usually constructed of planks, bamboo, or 
wickerwork ; sometimes of reeds daubed with mud. Their 
best houses are floored with rattan ropes half an inch thick, 
but are without division or partition. The parents sleep on 
the east side, the boys on the west, and the girls on the south. 
A village consists of a half-dozen such houses ; a score makes 
a large village. The skulls of boar and deer fastened on the 
walls, shining black with smoke, served for interior decoration ; 
and outside, under the eaves, is an entire row of these orna- 
ments, relieved by an occasional Chinese cranium, some fresh, 
others old and weather-beaten. 


The hunt is. the mam source of savage food-supply. In the 
forests game is plentiful, and with guns, spears, bows and arrows, 
boar, bear, deer, and smaller game — indeed, anything that has 
life — are secured for food. They are not at all dainty, and 
eat what they can get, if they cannot get what they want; 
but as the choicest of morsels they enjoy a piece of raw flesh 
cut warm from the slain animal before it is dead. A little 
farming is done, the work generally falling to the women. 
Three or four acres of ground are sufficient for a village of one 
hundred, each family having a separate plot. Mountain-rice, 
maize, taro, a little sweet potato, and pomelos are cultivated, 
while berries, plums, and a small variety of orange grow wild. 
A hoe with a short handle is the one implement required. 

The dress of the savage is not altogether unpicturesque. 
A sack of coarse linen, open in front, and with holes for the 
arms, serves the purposes of a coat, and is often ornamented 
with bright red or blue threads plucked from a piece of flan- 
nel obtained in barter, interwoven about the bottom. Caps 
are made of rattan, and besmeared with the blood of the deer 
or boar, and sometimes covered with the skins of animals 
killed in hunting. Buttons, beads, and brass wire are greatly 
prized for ornamentation. Women have artistic head-bands 
of beads, shells, and camelian. Rows of brass rings are worn 
on the legs and arms, and armlets of white shell are thought to 
look well against the reddish brown of a woman's arm. Men 
and women wear earrings, the woman's style being a stick of 
bamboo five inches in length and half an inch thick, wound 
round at intervals with a fine yellow grass ; the men are con- 
tent with ones of a larger size, but shorter. These are stuck 
through holes made in the ears, and to a foreigner look neither 
comfortable nor pretty; but custom has laid its hand heavy 
on these dusky children of the forest, as on the aristocracy of 
European or American society. However much or little other 
clothing is worn, every man must have a broad belt of braided 












'■:Hi5AW-^.v\^.-^'^-..-Bfcj ' ■ " r .fcfa ! 


rattan, in which he carries a long, crooked, sharp-pointed 
knife, so useful for cutting tobacco, betel-nut, wood, and in 
case an animal is to be skinned or a Chinese beheaded. This 
belt is also very useful when food is scarce ; an extra twist or 
knot is said to greatly . mitigate a hungry man's distress. 

Tattooing, is practised by all the mountain savages, and is 
done with great care. A well-defined pattern is carefully 
followed. The blue-black Hues on the forehead are short, 
straight, vertical; those on the cheeks are invariably curved 
and are regularly arranged. From the ear to the side of the 
mouth are three curved Hnes; underneath them a row of 
diamond-shaped marks; lower down three more curved 
lines extending from ear to ear below the mouth ; below this 
another row of ornaments ; and lower still three curved lines 
complete the design. No prize-winner on presentation day 
feels prouder than a savage when standing up to be tattooed. 

They have only two musical instruments — one a simple 
affair made of the hard rind of the bamboo, three inches long, 
half an inch wide, with a " tongue " cut in the center and a 
string attached to either end. It is made on the principle of 
the " jews'-harp," and produces a similar sound. The other 
is a " nose-flute," made of bamboo, a foof long, blown into 
with the nose, and played upon with the fingers like a flute. 

The savages all marry; old bachelors and old maids are 
alike uriknown. Marriage, however, is a social privilege from 
which a man is debarred until he has proved his merit as a 
hunter and has brought in at least one Chinese head ; but if 
the Chinese are unusually careful about their heads, and keep 
beyond spear-reach of the most daring brave, the chief may 
grant a special dispensation to one who has won his spurs in 
a deer-hunt or in a contest with the wild boar. The parents 
of the girl make arrangements for her, and answer all proper 
questions. There is no great ceremony, except that the bride 
is gaily decked with ornaments and articles of many colors 


before she is led to the house of her husband, and that danc- 
ing, drinking, and wild carousing express the good wishes of 
the tribe. 

These savages are singularly free from many moral and 
social vices common alike among civilized and uncivilized 
peoples. Gambling and opium-smoking are very rare ; mur- 
der, theft, incendiarism, polygamy, and social impm-ity are al- 
most unknown, except where the baneful influence of Chinese 
traders and border-men has corrupted the simplicity of the 
savage. Tribes are continually at war with one another, and all 
agree in regarding raids on the Chinese as both legitimate and 
praiseworthy ; but among themselves crime is rare. Should a 
brave be convicted of incendiarism or -wounding another in a 
drunken quarrel he is condemned to procure a certain number 
of deer-skins and to give a feast at his own expense for the 

Whatever of religion these savages possess may be called 
nature-worship. They are entirely without any of the notions 
or the symbols of Chinese idolatry. They do not bow down 
and worship anything seen or unseen, and have no conception 
of a supreme personal God. There are feasts, however, that 
have a certain religious significance. At the end of harvest 
they have a dance and feast expressive of reverence and grat- 
itude to the heavens and the earth. They believe, too, in the 
existence and continued influence of innumerable spirits, the 
spirits of their ancestors and great braves who have left the 
body. The distinction between the soul and the body is marked 
by the names given — ta-ni-sah, meaning the soul, and egyp, the 
body. Their notions of the place of the departed spirits are 
very vague and general, but the belief in their direful power is 
a source of perpetual fear and torture. Food and liquor are 
sometimes set for the spirits of the departed, and then con- 
sumed with some sort of invocation to the spirits to bless and 
prosper. I was present on one occasion when one tribe was 


engaged in this ceremony. The right hand was held up with 
the index-finger extended, and all joined in the invocation: 
" Na-e-an [Heaven], hang-ni-ngi-sa-i-a-ku [give us hearts of 
peace, give us long life, give us prosperity] ; han-pai-ku [we 
are about to eat]." At the same time the forefinger was dipped 
four times in the liquor, and then the following v/ords -were 
added : " Ma-ra-nai [Earth], han-pai-ku [we are about to eat] ; 
ai-mu-na-va-hi [you spirits that have already departed, give us 

Some tribes have ceremonies in connection with the worship 
of their ancestors three times a year. They regard it a duty 
to praise and reverence their progenitors for the hardships 
they encountered and for their skill in kiUing the boar and 
deer. In an open space in the village the tribe meets; men 
and women join hands in a circle around liquor, cakes, millet, 
and salted fish, placed there for the spirits expected to be 
present. At times they join hands in a long row, two or three 
of the leaders waving white-and-red flags at the ends of long 
bamboo poles. This ceremony invariably takes place at night, 
and a weird thing it is to watch their half-naked bodies bound 
forward and backward, with many wild leaps into the air, their 
flags flying in the lurid torch-light, and all the time the most 
unearthly yells and shrieks keeping up a sort of pandemonium 

They reverence to the utmost degree of superstitious vener- 
ation the chirp and movements of little birds. Should any 
expedition be under consideration — especially hunting, and 
most of all head-hunting — they will go out and throw sticks 
up into some tree and disturb the birds. Should the chirp be 
a certain sound and their flight be in a certain direction, noth- 
ing could induce the chief to call out his braves. Their rev- 
erence for the little tailor-bird has more than once been the 
cause of annoyance and inconvenience. On one occasion I 
planned the ascent of Mount Sylvia, whose peak towers more 


than eleven thousand feet above the sea. The services of a 
chief and a dozen braves were secured. The chief's son, who 
afterward became a Christian, acted as interpreter. Our point 
of departure was a place we called " Huts." When Captain 
Bax made his trip this was the farthest inland point then 
reached. Two of the men went in advance, cutting the 
prickly creepers ; but the first day our clothes were torn and 
our hands sorely lacerated. The second day, on a high peak, 
the signal-shout of our guides was answered by several shots 
in rapid succession, and then another band of savages met us. 
They surrounded me, scrutinized me from head to foot, then 
grinned and said, " You have no cue ; you must be oiu: kins- 

After spending the night in their village we crossed another 
range and followed a dark defile, where, looking over the 
ledges of rock, an impetuous torrent could be seen dashing 
over boulders two hundred feet below. In the afternoon we 
were within the bounds of another tribe. A halt was called ; 
rice-balls were ranged in a circle, a large bamboo of native 
liquor, with a drinking-cup, in the center. They all sat down, 
drank, and fired several volleys. Two dozen of the local tribe, 
with their chief, who had been watching us from concealment 
all the time, suddenly appeared with their matchlocks ready. 
Our chief made signs and the guns were lowered. Each one 
advanced in turn, and putting his hand first on my breast, 
then on his own, said, "You are our kinsman." Then the 
members of the two tribes threw their arms around one an- 
other's necks, and with their faces together drank to the health 
of both. 

On the morning of the fourth day we were making the 
ascent of Sylvia. There is excitement and interest in the 
thought, for Sylvia is the pride of our mountains. Higher and 
higher we wound and cut and climbed. Far up we reached a 
little open space among the tangle, and could see that next 


day would take us to the topmost peak. Below could be seen 
all the ranges, with their intervening valleys. All around was 
the wild luxuriance of cypress and camphor, orange, plum, and 
apple, chestnut, oak, and palm, while the umbrella-Hke tree-fern 
rose majestically some thirty feet high, with its spreading 
fronds fully twenty feet long. Far up in the crotch of the 
camphor or cypress could be seen the ribbony ferns, and 
hanging down from the branches orchids varied and beautiful. 
On one side is a grove of bamboo with sky-blue stems and 
feather/ tops. In the jungle the trees are interlaced by a net- 
work of prickly rattan. Standing there on that jutting crag, 
gazing on that marvelous scene above, around, below, listen- 
ing to the music of a torrent tumbling from a chasm high 
overhead, far to the west the waters of the Formosa Channel 
gleaming like a long line of blue light, and, between, the moun- 
tain-ranges, looking as though the dark-green sea stood still, 
"with all its rounded billows fixed and motionless forever," 
the effect of it all was overwhelming. 

But after that night of ecstasy came the morning of disap- 
pointment. With the snow-capped heights of Sylvia almost 
within reach, the chief announced his decision to return to 
" Huts." He had been out interviewing the birds, and their 
flight warned him back. There was nothing for it but to fall 
into line and retrace our steps. Reluctandy, but with much 
more rapidity, the descent was made, and we arrived at the 
village in time for the braves to participate in the deviHsh jubi- 
lation over ?. head brought in during our absence. One ugly 
old chief, wild with the excitement of the dance, put his arm 
around my neck and pressed me to drink with him from his 
bamboo, mouth to mouth. I refused, stepped back, looked 
him sternly square in the face, and he was cowed and made 
apologies. When we left them they were urgent in their in- 
vitations to their " black-bearded kinsman " to visit them again. 

When in the forests near West Peak, nine thousand feet 


high, I strolled about outside a savage village, and was sud- 
denly called to halt by strange and angry shouts. Looking 
around for an explanation, I saw savages with their chief stand- 
ing a little way off, their hands on the handles of their long 
knives. They gesticulated wildly and seemed almost frantic. 
I then advanced to the chief, put my hand on his shoulder, 
and immediately the turmoil ceased. The cause of it all was 
that I had been standing upon an old grave, and, according 
to their superstitious notions, to touch a grave is sure to bring 
dire calamity to the tribe. They bury a dead body in a hole 
several feet deep, the knees drawn up to the breast, and all the 
weapons of the dead deposited in the grave. It is covered 
over with twigs and leaves, and then all rush away, not daring 
to look back or to return to repair the grave. 

I was in that region with some of the. students for three 
weeks, unable to return to the cleared- land owing to the im- 
passable state of the streams, swollen by continual rains. We 
had no provisions and were entirely dependent on the savages. 
But we lacked for nothing. What food they had or could get 
we shared. They brought us Indian com and wild honey 
preserv^ed in bottles made out of the bamboo. They offered 
us a spirituous liquor made out of mountain-rice, of which the/ 
are very fond, and which seems to make them drowsy. Mr. 
E. C. Baber, the British consul, who was with me on one tour, 
sampled the liquor and pronounced it " poor stuff." 

One year I spent Christmas day with the savages. Koa 
Kau, another student, and an elder from Sin-tiam accompanied 
me. We crossed the river at Sin-tiam and were soon within 
the mountains. Next day, when walking some distance in 
advance of the others, I came upon a- savage woman with a 
child on her back. She looked afraid at first, but when I 
spoke she smiled and the child laughed aloud. A httle fartlier 
on her husband appeared, his hand grasping his knife and a 
fierce look on his face. The woman spoke to him and then 


he was friendly. Hearing that I wished to visit their chief, 
who holds rule over eight villages, they offered to guide me. 
Through reed-marshes and jungle, up hill and down, over 
rocks and fallen trees, we made our way. Again and again 
bird-listening was resorted to, but always with favorable results. 

When we reached the chief's village we were taken into his 
august presence. He received us graciously. The students 
and myself were to be his guests, while the rest of om party 
should be given quarters in another house. A bear had been 
killed that day, and a fresh piece of his flesh was brought in 
for us ; but we were not equal to raw bear's meat not yet cold, 
and had to decline with thanks. The women gathered some 
rice, threshed it, tramped it in a large tray to remove the husk, 
and pounded it in a tub with a wooden stamper four feet long, 
grasped by the middle, until in a very short time the hulls were 
off and the rice ready for the pot. The pot was supported 
by three old knives stuck in the ground as spits. At supper 
each made rice into a ball for himself with a wooden ladle and 
his fingers, and reached for some of Bruin's haunches, broiled 
to suit the taste of a brave. 

The chief's house was one large room fully thirty feet long, 
with a fire blazing at night at either end. Men stood around 
one fire, women squatted beside the other. There were five 
beds on poles along the walls. The highest was given to me, 
and one close by to the students. We had candles made from 
the heart of the fir-tree, and as one burned out it was replaced 
by another. On one couch across the room lay the savage 
mother with her sleeping new-born babe. She was human and 
had the instincts of a mother ; but she was an untutored sav- 
age, and, savage-hke, she smoked incessantly her long bamboo 
pipe. The men smoked, told stories, and discussed the chase 
and an expedition to the border-land to be undertaken soon. 
The women were busy thread-making on the spinning- jenny ; 
and as they wound the rhea they laughed, twitted one another, 


and chatted as their sisters do in Christian countries. Yes, 
sisters! for He made them, died for them, and from the glory 
bends on them a Brother's eye. We proposed a song — " one 
of the songs of Zion." They all looked and listened with evi- 
dent interest. The aborigines are much more musical than the 
Chinese. We sang several hymns, and through the chief's son, 
who once visited me at Tamsui, I told them of the far-away 
home and of God's love for the world. It was Christmas 
night ; and away there in a wild place, where no white man 
had ever been, and in the company of men and women and 
httle children who never before heard of his coming, it sent a 
thrill to the heart to tell of the Babe of Bethlehem, the Man 
of Nazareth and Calvary. I could not help thinking of their 
sad state, and of the opportunity and responsibility of the thou- 
sands in Christian lands who on that very day took up the 
Christmas carol : 

" Hark, the herald angels sing 
Glory to the new-born King." 

These tribes are continually changing their headquarters. 
When a chief or the head of a family dies they do not care to 
remain in that vicinity, but begin anew in some other quarter. 
The abandoned site is soon overgrown by shrubs and vines, 
and only the absence of immense trees marks the place of their 
former habitation. Their mode of clearing the forest-land is 
rather novel. Climbing the trees, they lop off the branches 
with their knives, then girdle the trunk, and in time the storms 
lay the dead trees low. The land is afterward cleared for the 
village and rice-fields. Some of the tribes are rapidly dimin- 
ishing in numbers and losing their independence, and will, in 
course of time, be absorbed by the superior race. Natural 
increase does not keep pace with the waste. The hard lot 
of the savage woman unfits her for maternity, and makes her 
progeny less able to endure the hardness of savage life. 


One of the sad things about their hfe is the condition of 
woman among them. The heaviest burden rests upon her. 
All day long she toils in the fields, and at night carries home 
the fruit of her work. Then she goes out into the bush and 
gathers firewood, returning with a heavy load on her back. 
Exposure, drudgery, poor food, and all the other ills of her 
burdened life soon tell on her strength ; the strong, healthy, 
finely developed girl is old before her time, and at an age 
when her civilized sister is in her prime she is worn, haggard, 
and utterly repulsive in her decrepit ugliness. Centuries of 
civihzation and the influence of Christianity would equalize the 
burden of men and women, and teach those idle braves that 
the weaker sex is not the beast of burden for the lords of the 
tribe. Whatever new burdens might be imposed by the sharper 
struggle for existence in a more highly organized and compli- 
cated state of society, they could scarcely be more cruel or 
crushing than those that make a savage woman's life too dreary 
for pleasure and too unromantic for tragedy. 

As yet our missionary work among the savages is little more 
than skirmishing. Occasional tours to their villages may do 
something — have, indeed, done something — for their benighted 
souls. But we do not call that mission work, and at present 
it seems difficult to do more. No missionary from the West 
could live long in the mountains, so great is the rainfall, and 
so ruinous to health. The multiplicity of dialects presents an- 
other obstacle. A native may yet be raised up to carry the 
gospel to his fellows. Till then we hope to do what- may be 
done by such methods as are within our reach. Several of the 
chapels in the border-land are attended by savages with more 
or less regularity. We keep in constant touch with them, and 
under ordinary circumstances have no fear of personal violence ; 
but all attempts to evangelize them must, for the present gen- 
eration at least, meet seemingly insuperable ©bstacles. The 
blankness of their moral life, the blindness of their spiritual 


vision, the deadness — not absence — of their receptive faculties, 
make the effort to move them with the dynamic of truth a 
seemingly hopeless task. Add to this the extreme hardness of 
their lot, the keenness of life's struggle, the barrenness of life's 
outlook, and, most of all, take account of the utterly damning 
effect of intoxicants introduced by the wily Chinese trader, for 
which, when once awakened, the savage thirst is insatiable. 
Facing a conspiracy of such resisting and demorahzing forces, 
mission work indeed seems hopeless. But the obstacles are 
only seemingly insuperable ; "the task is only seemingly hope- 
less. The gospel has brought hght to the savage mind. Men 
and women have believed and been made free. Their fiercest 
passions have been tamed, their deadliest lusts curbed and 
sanctified. Some are still fighting life's winning battle among 
their native mountains; some have gone to the better world. 
With confidence I look forward to meeting in the land of tlie 
hereafter one and another who first heard of God and heaven 
around the gleaming night fires in the forests of Formosa. 



Their ruling passion — Probable origin — Hereditary hatred of Chinese — 
Pe-po-hoan a traitor — By nature a hunter — Head-hunter's outfit — 
Planning a raid — Attack by daylight — Under cover of night — Return 
of the victors — A head-hunting feast — Disposing of the head — A 
fight with Chinese — Failure — In Chinese hands — Vengeance — Be- 
trayed by kinsmen — After British " blue-jackets " 

HEAD-HUNTING is the ruling passion among the sav- 
ages in Formosa. This is the one crime of violence laid 
to their charge. To this, as to nothing else, they give them- 
selves from earliest youth to decrepit age, following it with an 
ardor that never cools and a cruelty that never relents. The 
deer and the boar may lose their power to stir the old chief to 
enthusiasm, but to his dying day his right hand never loses its 
cunning ; and to see his braves return with the spoils of a head- 
hunting raid is as life to his bones. The last desire of the 
dying is that his sons may prove worthy of their sire and by 
stealthy step and certain thrugt add to the trophies of the tribe. 
Hideous and gruesome as this passion appears to all civihzed 
peoples, it must not be taken as incompatible with the coexis- 
tence of moral qualities not always found, or found but feebly 
developed, in other savage or half-civilized races. As has 
already been said, in several points of morality these mountain 
savages will compare favorably with other and higher races. 
Like their nearest of kin, the Hill Dyaks of Borneo, whom they 
resemble with significant closeness in most of their distinctive 



features of character and in their customs and habits of Ufe, 
they are truthful and honest to a remarkable degree ; and gross 
immorality, when found among them, is nearly always trace- 
able to border-land association with the Chinese. 

Head-hunting may be traced back to the petty village and 
tribal wars; and as life has no sacredness in the eyes of the 
savage, and an enemy has no rights, it became simply a ques- 
tion of mode as to how their enemies should be put to death 
and some wrongs atoned for. The bringing back of the head 
was regarded as satisfactory evidence — a kind of medical cer- 
tificate — that the sentence of the tribe had been carried out. 
When hostilities became fixed, and certain tribes or races were 
regarded as unforgivable enemies, a premium was put upon 
their heads, and the brave who showed most skill was counted 
worthy of greatest honor and made head man of his village or 
chief of his tribe. So it may have come about — at all events 
it has come about — that the hill savages of Formosa look upon 
the enemy of their tribes as a mark for their spears, and his 
head as specially designed to ornament their huts. 

These aboriginal inhabitants held the island to be theirs by 
the right of centuries of possession ; and when the Chinese 
came they were regarded as intruders, who would not respect 
native rights. The Chinese justified every suspicion, and shrank 
from nothing that would give them possession of the land. 
The natives were driven back into the mountains, their liber- 
ties curtailed, and their life molested. The Chinese, therefore, 
became the hated enemy of the savage, and to avenge the 
wrong of his tribe not only merited applause from men and 
maidens still living, but won the approval of ancestral braves, 
whose spirits, watching the fortunes of the tribes, had powers 
for weal or woe, and would surely punish the family whose 
sons held back from the work of vengeance. 

While the Chinese are hated with the intensest hatred, and 
their heads prized as trophies of highest price, the savages have 














no tenderness of feeling for their kindred who have acknow- 
ledged Chinese authority. The various tribes of conquered 
aborigines in the plains are looked upon as traitors, and when 
opportunity offers they are made to pay the penalty. A Chi- 
nese head may be a first prize, but the chance of a Pe-po-hoan 
is never missed. Indeed, it would almost seem that the treason 
of those who have yielded to the oppressor inspires a bitterer 


The savage is by nature a hunter. He has the instincts, 
the senses, and the hardy endurance required. He knows the 
haunts and habits of game. He can wait long and follow far. 
His foot is soft, his aini sure, and into the chase he throws all 
the passion of his soul. When the game is human, not animal, 
there is added zest in the chase, and his vengeful hate suffers 
not his energies to flag. No sleuth-hound is truer to the scent, 
no tiger is stealthier of foot. Everything is planned before- 
hand. For weeks, perhaps months, back of all other thoughts 
is the prospective raid. From some ambush on the hilltop the 
movements of the fated victims on the plain are watched. 
What time the farmers come and go, when the rice will be 
reaped or the vegetables dug, when the fishermen leave home 
and when they return, who among the country people go into 
town, what the defensive strength of a village is, where and 
when the raid could best be made — all this the scouts know 
long before the appointed day arrives. 

The outfit of a head-hunter is simple. The necessary things 
are a spear, knife, and bag. The spear is of bamboo, about 
twenty feet long, with an iron arrow-shaped head eight inches 
long. This is light, strong, and easily used, and always car- 
ried in the hands. The knife is of iron, eighteen inches long, 
sharp-pointed, and generally crooked, with a one-sided open 
hardwood sheath. This knife is always in the savage's belt, 
and the belt is always worn. The bag is of strong twisted 
rhea-cord, open like a net, carried over the shoulders with 


Strings tied round the neck, and capable of holding two or 
three heads. Every head-huftter has the spear, knife, and bag. 
Sometimes bow and arrows are taken, and occasionally a 
matchlock gun. 

Always on the lookout for Chinese, they will attack them 
anywhere and at any time, should the opportunity be favor- 
able. But should a month or two go by without a head being 
brought to the village they become restless and unhappy. The 
old-time passion begins to bum, and arrangements are made 
for a head-hunting expedition. The chief calls his council 
braves together, the matter is talked over, and proposals con- 
sidered. The raid having been settled on and preliminaries 
arranged, the hunters then look to their weapons. As many 
as fifty sometimes join the expedition ; but when they come 
near the border territory, where the Chinese may be seen, they 
divide into small companies under the guide of the oldest and 

Sometimes they start out during the day, in which case the 
savages go singly. They know where and when their victims 
may be found, and rely more on the surprised attack and sud- 
den thrust than on the skill or strength of open combat. With 
all his daring the savage is at heart a coward, "bold in am- 
bush, base in open field." He watches from behind a boulder 
or bush until his victim is within spear-thrust, when suddenly 
and without warning he strikes the blow ; or he creeps up be 
hind the unguarded workman and takes him unawares. This 
is his method with the rattan and camphor workers in the for- 
est. The rattan industry is very extensively carried on by the 
Chinese, and many Avoodmen are employed. The rattan grows 
sometimes to the length of five hundred feet, creeping vine- 
like over other plants and above the branches of trees. The 
workman cuts the stalk near the root, and, going backward, 
pulls it out of the entanglement like a long rope. While he is 
so engaged the savage creeps up and thrusts him through with 


his long spear. Camphor-working is equally dangerous. The 
Chinese chip the trunks of the with a short a^z, 
on their knees or bending over all the while. That is ^le 
hunter's chance, and many a Chinese head is off before its 
owner has time to turn around. , The farmers are exposed to 
danger in their fields near the mountains. Often the face of 
a hill is cleared and planted, while the top and opposite side 
are still bush. The savages are concealed in the bush, and 
having observed the coming and going of men and women to 
the potato-patch, watch their chance, and before the alarm 
can be given the deed is done. The head-hunter frequently 
conceals himself beside lonely paths through fields of reeds, 
tall grass in the plains, or at the jnouth of a mountain gorge 
near the sea. Then he waits the coming of some solitary 
traveler, and the first warning of danger is the last thrust of 
the spear. In such ways head-hunting is carried on in the 
daylight, and in a surprisingly short time the hunter is back 
again in the security of the forest, with the proof of his skill 
in the rhea-net on his shoulder. A wild' yell gives the signal 
to his village, and in the plain below friends are beginning to 
wonder what is keeping husband or father — he never was so 
late before. 

But night is the favorite time for the head-hunter. Then 
the men go in companies. Their plan is to select a house 
standing apart and to surround, it, making a wide circle, and 
gradually closing in until at a signal the attack is made. Some- 
times one creeps up and sets fire to the dry thatch of the roof, 
and when the inmates are aroused and rush out they are in- 
stantly speared, their heads thrust into the bags, and in a mo- 
ment not a sound is heard but the crackling of the burning 
embers. If there is no reason for such haste, the hunters first 
secure the door, then thrust damp grass smudges through the 
chinks and openings, smoke the inmates to suffocation, and 
then secure their heads. This is safe only when a house is in 


a lonely place, where there is no danger of relief from neigh- 
bors. Failing to find a house to their liking, the hunters will 
take account of any theatrical performance in town, or other 
attraction that may be depended on to draw the country 
people and detain them until a late hour. Stragglers are never 
safe on these roads at night. Or, failing in this, they lie in 
wait for the farmers and their men, who go to the harvest- 
field early in the morning and return when the light has failed 
in the evening. A man or woman bent over the hoe all day, 
or trudging in the rice-field, is not always on the alert, and 
proves an easy mark. The women and children in the fishing- 
villages are always afraid for the terrors of the night ; and men 
never know, when they push off in the evening, but that their 
loved ones will have fallen victims to the cruel savages before 
they return ; for on the mountains behind the village the sav- 
age spies are taking note of all. 

The heads having been secured, the hunters return with all 
haste to the village. When on the peak of the nearest m^oun- 
tain they shout their wild whoop of victory. The villagers 
have been waiting, and when that yell is heard a party is sent 
out to meet the braves and escort them home. All the village 
is out of doors. Old men and women, youths and maidens,, 
the youngest child in the settlement, even the very dogs, all 
know the meaning of the yell, and go wild with excitement. 
They are all on the way to welcome home the heroes. Such 
shouting, shrieking, and demon-like howls! The dogs seem 
as though they were made for nothing but yelping on that one 
occasion. The hunters recite their experiences — how they es- 
caped detection, how they did the deed, perhaps what wounds 
they got in the fray. Everything is told with many gesticula- 
tions, and every point is greeted with fresh demonstrations of 

In due time the hunting-party reaches the chief's house, and 
the spoils are exposed to inspection and further jubilation. If 


there be more than one head the joy of the village knows no 
bounds ; but one is sufficient to call out all the fiendish noises 
that men or devils could well desire. The head is placed in 
the middle room, or, if the crowd be too large, in an open 
space outside. Beside it is set a vessel with liquor distilled 
from the mountain-rice ; this is for the spirit so rudely surprised 
out of its body, and in return it is asked to put the hunters in 
the way of securing other Chinese heads. A circle is formed 
round the head, all joining hands — old hags with girls of six- 
teen, boys of ten with men of seventy. An old man carries 
a hollowed gourd-shell full of liquor, and with a bamboo cup 
supplies old and young. They all drink, and the liquor, which 
is mildly intoxicating, adds to the excitement. Round and 
round the head they circle, dancing a sort of double step, the 
braves leaping and yelling, the shrill voices of the children 
mingling with the broken-voiced utterances of their grand- 
mothers, who are the most hideous and excited of all, and 
over all the old chief urging on his tribe to fresh manifestations 
of delight and gratitude. All the while a wild bacchanalian 
song is chanted, the sound of which is like nothing outside the 
caverns of perdition. No alphabet I know can be so arranged 
as to represent such sounds. The nearest to spell- 
ing the song I heard in the village at the foot of Mount Sylvia 
would be "Hi-yah; hi-yeh ; hi-yo-heigh! " That begun low 
and ending in a high nasal screech, with many reduplications, 
and punctuated with many fiendish yells, might give some 
idea of the song of the savage at a head-hunting feast. The 
meaning of the song is that they are rejoicing now over their 
enemy, and are grateful for the head brought back by their 

This demonstration is kept up all night and until the third 
day. Should any get dizzy with the dance, or drunk with the 
liquor, their places are given to others, and they given time to 
recruit. On the third day the head is finally disposed of. In 


this the tribes differ. One sets up a tripod of poles in the 
village, with the head on the top. Others leave it exposed 
till the flesh drops off. Only rarely is the head boiled and 
the flesh eaten ; but it is common enough to boil the brain to 
a jelly and eat it with vengeful reUsh. They offered it to me 
as a rare treat. 

When the flesh has been removed the skull is hung up as a 
trophy to be prized, sometimes on the wall inside, oftenest out- 
side under the eaves. The brave who can exhibit the longest 
row of skulls is the envy of the tribe. Every house has this 
decoration, and the chief's looks hke the museum of an anato- 
my specialist. They are never taken down, and the smoke 
and rain of years only adds to the ghastliness of the sight. 
The cue is always hung up on the wall inside. I have more 
than once, during hours of sleeplessness, counted the skulls 
and cues in a savage's house and thought of all that passion 
meant to them and to sorrowing families out in the plains. I 
cannot say that I dreaded a like fate, or that those ugly evi- 
dences of cruelty kept sleep away or made sleep miserable 
with fearful dreams. 

Far inland from Toa-kho-ham there is a Chinese settlement 
and trading-post, where in 1877 I witnessed a fight between 
the settlers and a band of two dozen head-hunters. The band 
had divided into two companies and attacked different points. 
One company had already secured their prize and were mak- 
ing their escape with three heads. The other party had sur- 
rounded the camp in which we were, but the yells of their 
comrades alarmed us and we rushed out in time to resist at- 
tack. A few moments more our stockade would have been 
burned and the inmates beheaded. The alarm was now 
sounded and the entire settlement was in hot pursuit. The 
savages fled beyond the cleared land, reunited their forces, 
then turned viciously upon their pursuers. A battle ensued. 
It was a wild and bloody scene. Both sides were armed, but 


the rapidity with which the savages dropped on their backs, 
lifted one foot, steadied their leveled matchlocks between 
their toes, and fired was something marvelous. Leaping, fir- 
ing, yelling all the while like demons, these bloodthirsty Malay- 
ans held their ground for nearly an hour. But the Chinese 
were no cowards, and at last, fearless of death, dashed forward 
and drove the savages back into their mountain retreats. 

Should the head-hunting expedition end in failure the braves 
are utterly ashamed, and in some tribes dare not return to their 
own village for three days. Failure is in any case a disgrace, 
and they take care to fail but seldom. But should one of their 
number be caught or killed, then there is wild lamentation in 
the tribe, and the fatal place is shunned for years. 

And woe to the head-hunter that falls into the hands of the 
Chinese. The mercy he has shown is meted out to him. At 
Sa-kiet-a-koe, a Chinese city of sixteen thousand inhabitants 
in the Kap-tsu-lan plain, I witnessed a scene illustrative alike 
of the character of both races. A month before, at a Chinese 
house a mile out of the city, where many were assembled at 
night for idolatrous worship, one came in and reported a mys- 
terious stirring among the stalks of hemp outside. Savages 
were at once suspected, and the men anned themselves with 
guns and other weapons and started in pursuit. The savages 
fled. Five were killed, five escaped to the bush, one sought 
refuge in a tree ; but the dogs traced him, and he was taken 
prisoner, brought to the city, and imprisoned. He was kept 
in ignorance of his fate until on the appointed day he was led 
to the execution ground near the military mandarin's yamen. 
People crowded about in large numbers. Two executioners 
arrived, each with a heavy broadsword about two feet in length. 
Men and boys stood around feeling the weapons and remark- 
ing on their worth. The third gun sounded, and in a few 
minutes twenty soldiers with musty Remington rifles came 
hurriedly along. Behind them two coolies carried the miser- 


able creature in an open, shattered sedan-chah. A bamboo 
stick, holding a paper with written characters stating the crime 
for which he was to die, was stuck through his hair and down 
his back, inside the cords which bound his hands behind him, 
and extended two feet above his head. When the chair was 
dropped the wretch crouched and had to be dragged out. His 
face was horribly contorted and the very picture of despair 
and cowardly fear. He crouched for a moment, then fell for- 
ward. One blow was struck from behind, then the other exe- 
cutioner advanced and sawed the head off with his large blade. 
The head was tied to a bamboo pole and carried away to be 
put up on the west gate. Scores were there on purpose to get 
parts of the body for food and medicine. Under such circum- 
stances, or if a savage is killed inland, the heart is eaten, flesh 
taken off in strips, and bones boiled to a jelly and preserved 
as a specific for malarial fever. 

Sometimes the savages are taken by the treachery of their 
kinsmen, the Pe-po-hoan. One famous old chief was on the 
top of a mountain with a band of twenty-four braves, when 
he was beckoned by <a party of Pe-po-hoan to approach and 
drink one another's health. After much hesitation the savages 
came ; but hardly had the liquor been tasted when the crafty 
design was revealed and the savages attacked. After a des- 
perate hand-to-hand struggle the men escaped, but the chief 
was taken a prisoner. He was handed over to the Chinese 
authorities, who gave a reward to his captors. After being 
imprisoned, beaten, tortured, he was dragged through the 
streets, and women rushed forward, thrusting long needles 
into his flesh by way of avenging the death of their husbands, 
sons, and friends. When the signal was given for him to 
kneel, with diabolical glee he said he was not ashamed to die, 
for at his house, on the mountains was a row of Chinese heads 
lacking only six of completing the hundred, every one the 
prize of his own daring skill. Around him were several Chi- 


nese border-men who had adopted the cannibalism of the sav- 
ages, and these cut away the skull and ate the brains, in the 
hope that they too would be brave like the chief whom they 
so greatly feared. 

The savages do not scruple to take the heads of foreigners, 
and sometimes those who are unacquainted with the shores 
have narrow escapes. In 1876 I was invited onboard H. B. M. 
ship "Lapwing" as the guest of Lieutenant Shore, now 
commander of the Coast Guards of England, and went for a 
sail down the east coast of the island. At So Bay the great 
man-of-war stood at anchor, and two do^en of the blue-jackets 
got leave to go ashore. They were told off under charge of 
navigating officer Murray, and soon had a fire kindled on the 
rocks and were out with their drag-net for fish. I accompanied 
the officer, and was stroUing along the beach. Suddenly a 
Chinese rushed 'up to me, pointed his finger toward some 
boulders near the water, and without speaking disappeared. I 
looked in the direction indicated, and a few yards away saw 
objects moving toward us. They were the head-hunters, with 
their eyes on the blue-jackets, creeping stealthily, hke so many 
tigers, until they would be within reach. Without giving any 
reason I had the fire moved to another spot. This told the 
savages that they were discovered, and they vanished into the 
darkness. Had they not been detected they would certainly 
have succeeded in their designs, and in the night could not 
have been overtaken. The blue-jackets returned with the fish, 
broiled them on the hot stones, ate them with relish, and not 
until their jollification was over and we were safely back on 
board were they made aware of their danger. 

Many other incidents might be told, but the foregoing will 
illustrate the kind of life the savages live, and will suggest 
something of the obstacles in the way of all effort to make 
mild a savage people and " subdue them to the useful and the 





Nearing port — Up the river — The mission buildings — The town — Pop- 
ulation — Industries — Hospital 

SAILING northward from Hong Kong, through the For- 
mosa Channel, on the left is seen the mainland of China. 
At Amoy we turn eastward, and, crossing the channel, the 
vessel steers for the harbor at the port of Tamsui. If it is 
high tide she glides smoothly over the sand-bar that guards 
the entrance ; if low tide, anchor must be dropped. From 
the upper deck of our steamer lying at anchor we get a bird's- 
eye view of Tamsui. Before us, looking eastward, in the 
background, stretching north and south, and rising tier above 
tier in stately grandeur, are those massive mountain-ranges 
left by tremendous volcanic upheavals of past ages, and now 
clad in perennial verdure. Here and there on their sloping 
sides are seen patches of tea-plantations. Farther down, and 
interspersed with trees and grasses, lie the rich green rice ter- 
races. No fences, no straight lines, no precise measurements, 
but leveled fields of every size and shape, edged with green, 
and forming a regular descent, each distinct and lower than 
the other, down through the valleys almost to the sea-shore. 

At last out swings the signal. Up comes the anchor, and 
with leisurely dignity our vessel heads forward into the mouth 
of the Tamsui River. On the south, at our right as we enter, 
lies Quan-yin Mountain, seventeen hundied feet high, covered 



with tall grass, groves of bamboo, banian and fir trees. Nest- 
ling at its feet are villages and farm-houses, almost concealed 
under ancient spreading banians, swaying willows, and prickly 
screw-pine hedges. There, too, at times buried in several 
feet of water, lies a mud-bank, where oyster-beds have been 
arranged. To the left is a low stretch of sea-sand bounded 
by black volcanic rocks and broken coral, where women and 
children are gathering oysters and seaweed. There, among 
the drift of sand, stands "the black beacon," and a little 
farther on " the white beacon " ; then a fishing-village, with 
boats drawn up on the beach, and rows of nets hanging out 
to dry. There is a battered Chinese fort, and up the hill just 
behind it another fort, with modem massive earthworks, con- 
cealing guns and soldiery. 

Going slowly on, we pass low whitewashed buildings — 
Chinese customs offices, with their European residents. But 
here the hill rises abruptly two hundred feet, and on its face 
stands a tall, red, weather-worn, soHd-looking structure, the 
old Dutch fort, now the British consulate ; and there from its 
height floats the flag of world-wide empire. Beneath its 
shadow, surrounded by well-kept gardens, is the handsome 
residence of the British consul. And there, just opposite us, 
right on the simimit of the hill, surrounded by avenues of 
trees, are those two red, airy, and artistic-looking buildings that 
we espied far out at sea, and that present a style of architec- 
ture different from anything seen in any of the treaty ports 
of China. They are Oxford College and the Girls' School— 
the mission buildings of the Presbyterian Church in Canada. 
Near them, and almost hidden by trees, are two white dwell- 
ing-houses occupied by the missionaries. These are one story 
high, with tiled cottage roofs and thick whitewashed walls, and 
are called bungalows. Farther on stand two other bunga- 
lows — one, a litde in the rear, for the customs secretary, and 
the other, on a line with the mission buildings, occupied by 


the foreign commissioner of the Chinese imperial customs. 
From there a Chinese graveyard slopes down to a gully, where 
a small stream runs and empties itself into the river in front. 
Right there begins the town of Tamsui, and it extends along 
the low bank of the river and the face of the hill at the back. 
The Chinese do not call the town by the name Tamsui ; 
that is the name of the district in which it stands. They call 
the town " Ho-be." The consular papers call it " Tamsuy." 
Foreigners mistook the name of the district for that of the 

The population- of Tamsui is 6148, with 1013 families. Just 
here it might be explained that the Chinese in North Formosa, 
in giving the popu ition of a town, invariably include all the 
villages and surrounding country coming under the jurisdiction 
of the town magistrate. Thus, in the case of Tamsui, there 
are four such villages: Sio-pi-teng, with a population of 73; 
Sin-tsng-a, with a po^ ulation of 1 1 1 2 ; Sio-pat-li-hun, with a 
population of 1580 ; Sio-koe-lang-a, with a population of 1320. 
The whole population of Tamsui, therefore, according to the 
Chinese method of reckoning, is 10,233. 

Tamsui is a busy enough place. Like other towns, its 
market is crowded with fishermen, farmers, gardeners, and 
hucksters, noisily disputing over their wares. Rice-shops, 
opium-dens, Chinese temples, and drug-stores, side by side, 
claim patronage, and carpenters, blacksmiths, barbers, and 
chair-cooHes ply their trades. But it is, on the whole, rather 
a smoky, dirty town, not particularly noted for anything but its 
shipping-trade, and that it is one of the treaty ports where 
foreigners can hold property. This is really what gives it its 

Close by the chief thoroughfare stands the MacKay Hos- 
pital. From a sanitary view, no building could be better sit- 
uated, because the ravine, with its unfaihng stream of water, 
sweeps around three sides of it. All filth and garbage are 


immediately carried away. To this institution patients come 
from miles inland, and are treated for various diseases. Just 
adjoining the hcspital are the chapel and the preacher's dwell- 
ing-place. Only a few rods away are the steamship company's 
hongs. To the east stands the North Hill (Tai-tun), thirty- 
one hundred feet high ; and away northeast, with its head 
toward heaven, stands the highest peak, thirty-six hundred feet 
above the sea. 



The dominant idea — Reasons fpr a native ministry — An educated ministry 

First college — Methods of work — The missionary's museum — 


]\ TISSION work in North Formosa is dominated by the 
iVi idea of a native ministry. The piirpose is to evangelize 
the people, to enlighten their darkness by the power of diyine 
truth, and to drive back the mists " of-* error and the black 
clouds of sin that have through all the past obscured their 
vision of the City of God. That is the purpose of ^11 foreign 
mission work. But in the carrying out of that purpose meth- 
ods must be adopted suitable to the circumstances of the case. 
What would be reasonable and effective in one field would 
be absurd and useless in another. What would succeed in 
Europe or America would fail in Asia. China is not India, 
and Formosa is not China. The man or the mission that 
supposes that a good theory must be capable of universal 
application, and that social forces, hereditary customs, or even 
climatic influences need not be taken into ar junt, makes a 
grievous mistake. 

All the reaso-ns that led me to lay such emphasis on a native 
ministry in North Formosa need not now be recited. They 
had to do with the language, climate, social life of the people, 
and the capabilities of the natives for Christian service. I 
was at the first convinced that the hope of the mission lay not 



in foreign workers, and every year only confirms that opinion. 
The Lord of the harvest has raised up from among the natives 
of the island laborers whose services in those white fields will 
not be fully appreciated until we and they shall, at the harvest- 
home, come with rejoicing, bringing our sheaves with us. 

One reason for a native ministry that will be appreciated by 
all practical and genuine friends of missions is that it is by f^x 
the most economical, both as to men and money. Nativjs 
can live in a climate and under conditions where any foreigner 
would die, and they can be hale and happy where I would 
tremble with chills and fever. And the cost of a native 
preacher and his family is so much less, that the contributions 
of the churches can be made to support a very much larger 
staff than if foreigners alone were employed. It is much more 
expensive to live in Formosa than on the mainland, but even 
with us the expense of a native is only a fraction of what is 
absolutely required for one accustomed to life in the West. 
The total cost per month for a preacher and his family is cov- 
ered by nine dollars and eighty-three cents Mexican money — 
less than nine dollars in gold. The following table presents 
the average : 

Rice per month $3.00 

Salt vegetables 4.00 

Coal or wood 1.50 

Carrying water and cleaning rice ." 65 

Shaving heads 30 

Shoes, stockings, and clothes 38 

Total $9.83 

But having settled on a native ministry, and having among 
the first converts those fitted and desirous to begin their stud- 
ies in preparation for the work, the question of their training ■ 
came early to the front. Let it be clearly understood that the 
mission stands for a trained ministry. Whatever good an 


uneducated minister may accomplish in Christian lands, he is 
next to useless among the heathen. Be it foreign or native, 
the ministry that will command the respect of the people and 
will endure must be intelligent as well as zealous. But in order 
to an educated ministry, great buildings, large libraries, and 
wealthy endowments, however helpful they may be, are not, at 
the first, absolutely indispensable. As good work cannot be 
done without these, but if the work done is genuine, increased 
facilities will follow. Our first college in North Formosa was 
not the handsome building that now overlooks the Tamsui 
River and bears the honored name of Oxford College, but out 
in the open under the spreading banian-tree, with God's blue 
sky as our vaulted roof. 

Beginning with A Hoa, I invariably had from one to twenty 
students as my daily companions. We began each day's work 
with a hymn of praise. When weather permitted we sat under 
a tree — usually the banian or a cluster of bamboos — and spent 
the day reading, studying, and examining. In the evening we 
retired to some sheltered spot, and I explained a passage of 
Scripture to the students and others gathered with them. In- 
deed, wherever night overtook us, in all our journeyings, I 
spoke on a part of God's truth, ever keeping the students in 
view. They took notes, ^studied them, and were prepared for 
review on the following day. 

Another favorite resort was on the rocks at Kelung. In the 
sampan we placed an earthen pot, rice, leek, and celery. 
Then we rowed- ourselves out to the tables and pillars of sand- 
stone by the sea. At noon each one gathered small sticks for 
a fire with which to cook our food. But we often dispensed 
with cooking, for each had provided himself with a sharpened 
nail with which to open the fresh oysters taken off the rocks. 
Study continued till 5 p.m., after which we coasted in shallow 
water. Several would plunge in and bring up shells, living 
coral, seaweed, sea-urchins, for study and examination. Some- 


times an hour was given to fishing with hook and hne, for the 
double purpose of supplying us with food and securing speci- 
mens for examination. 

As chapels were estabHshed we remained at each a day, 
week, or month, studying daily till 4 p.m. All were trained in 
singing, speaking, and debating. After four we made visita- 
tions to converts and heathen in the vicinity. Students were 
frequently invited to dine with friends, and thus they had 
golden opportunities for presenting the truth. Every evening 
a public service was held in the chapel where we were. 

A fourth method, and by no means the least profitable part 
of their training, was on the road in our traveling together. 
All manner of subjects were then discussed — the gospel, the 
people, the way to present the truth, and God, the Author of 
all. It was the daily habit of each one, when on the road, to 
collect specimens of some kind — plants, flowers, seeds, insects, 
mud, clay — and then to examine them at the first halting-place. 

In all these ways, during the early years, and sometimes 
even since the college buildings were erected at Tamsui, the 
students were trained to. become efficient workers, fluent speak- 
ers, skilful debaters, successful preachers. The college is now 
the center of our work, but whatever helps to develop the 
faculties of the students, inform their minds, or chasten their 
hearts, is pressed into ser\ace. 

My own study and museum in Tamsui are open to the 
students, and good use has been made of their resources. 
After twerty-three years of accumulation the study is well 
furnished, having books, maps, globes, drawings, microscopes, 
telescope, kaleidoscope, stereoscope, camera, magnets, galvanic 
batteries and other chemical apparatus, as well as innumerable 
specimens illustrative of geology, mineralogy, botany, and 
zoology. What would be otherwise a parlor is in our house a 
museum. In that room is a vast collection of every conceiv- 
able kind of article of use or interest to Chinese, Pe-po-hoan, 


or savage. There are collections of mariiiC shells, sponges, 
and corals of various kinds, classified and labeled. All sorts 
of serpents, worms, and insects are preserved. There are idols 
enough to stock a temple, ancestral tablets and religious curios, 
musical instruments, priests' garments, and all the stock in 
trade of Chinese idoktry, as well as models of implements of 
agriculture and weapons of war. The various savage tribes 
in the mountains are well represented. There is one idol ten 
feet high, different from any other I ever saw, and a complete 
collection of relics representing every aspect of savage life. 
Some things are quaint enough, others suggestive of sad 
thoughts, others gruesome and repulsive, because indicative of 
ferocity and savage cruelty. Keeping watch and ward over 
the whole scene are four life-size figures representing four sides 
of life in Formosa. In one comer is a Tauist priest, arrayed 
in his official long red robe, with a bell m one hand to arouse 
the devils possessing any man, and a whip in the other to drive 
them out. In the next corner is a bare-pated Buddhist priest, 
robed in drab, one hand holding his sacred scroll, the other 
counting his string of beads. Opposite to him is a fierce-look- 
ing head-hunter from the mountains, his forehead and chin 
tattooed, his spear at his side, bows and arrows strapped across 
his' s'houlders, a long knife at his girdle, and his left hand 
clutching the cue of some unfortunate victim. In the fourth 
comer is a savage woman, rudely attired, and working with 
her " spinning-jenny," as they may be seen in their mountain 

There may be good people in Christian lands who will read 
these pages with painful astonishment, horrified that a mission- 
ary should spend time collecting and studying such things. I 
do not attempt to justify my conduct in the eyes of such per- 
sons. Had they any conception of what it means to train 
native-bom heathen to become missionaries of the gospel of 
the Lord Jesus Christ, or could they conceive the reflex influ- 


ence of all this study on mission work, in humbling the proud 
graduate, conciliating the haughty mandarin, and attracting 
the best and brightest of the officials, both native and foreign, 
they would not so readily write across these paragraphs their 
ignorant and supercilious " Cui bono ? " 









The building — Canadian liberality — The grounds — Reflex influence — 
College work — Curriculuiu — Students — An evening in the college 
hall — Drill — Addresses — An inspiration 

OXFORD COLLEGE stands on a beautiful site about 
two hundred feet above the waters of the Tamsui River, 
which it overlooks, facing south. The building is seventy-six 
feet from east to west, and one hundred and sixteen from 
north to south. It is built of small, red, burnt bricks from 
Amoy, on the mainland of China. The entire outside was 
oiled and painted, as a protection against the heavy rains. 
The main hall has four arched windows of glass. A raised 
platform extends the entire breadth, with a blackboard of 
equal length. There are desk and stool for each student ; a 
map of the world, astronomical diagrams, and a rack for tunes 
on cotton cloth. The college has accommodation for fifty 
students, two teachers, and their families. There are two 
lecture-rooms, a museum and hbrary, bath-room, and kitchen. 
Every room is well ventilated, lighted, and furnished. There 
is an open court, around which runs a porch or veranda two 
hundred and fifty feet in length. 

It was during my first furlough in Canada, in 1880, that the 
people of my native county, Oxford, Ontario, at the sugges- 
tion of the " Sentinel- Revie w " newspaper of Woodstock, 
undertook to raise funds sufficient for erecting a college build- 



ing in Formosa. Ministers and other Christian friends ap- 
proved of the proposal, and it was carried out with enthusiasm 
and vigor. At an immense farewell meeting held in the 
Methodist church, Woodstock, on the eve of my return to 
Formosa, the sum of $6215 was presented to me; and with 
that money the college building at Tamsui was erected, and, 
as was fitting, it w^as called Oxford College. It is with grati- 
tude and pleasure that I recall this and other tokens of regard 
on the part of my home friends ; and w^hen I think of that 
farewell meeting in 1881 there stand out against the back- 
ground of loving memory the form and features of Oxford's 
greatest son, the late Rev. John Ross, of Brucefield, whose life 
of faith was to me an inspiration, and whose labor of love the 
Canadian church ought not to forget. 

After finishing the building, the next work was to lay out 
the grounds. In the proper season, trees, shrubs, and seeds 
were planted. These had to be attended to, lest the ravages 
of worms and white ants :vould destroy them all. To-day 
there is an avenue of evergreen banian from the new public 
road (named by the foreign community College Road) up to 
the college door. It is three hundred and sixty feet in length. 
The trees meet overhead and form a great shelter for the 
students during exercise hours. There is another avenue, 
quite similar, between the college and the Girls' School. It 
is three hundred and seventy feet long, and extends to the 
wall behind the two buildings. There is also an avenue, 
though not so long, on each side of the college. The paths 
are about ten feet wide, and are covered with coral gravel 
from the sea-shore. A hedge of privet and hawthorn incloses 
the mission property ; it is four feet across the top, several 
feet high, thirteen hundred and four feet in length, always 
green, and at times covered with beautiful purple flowers. 
There are twelve hundred and thirty-six evergreen-trees planted 
on the grounds as groves, and one hundred and four oleanders 


between five hundred and fifty-one banian-trees; and when 
the oleanders are in bloom — and they bloom for rhonths — 
their lovely flow^ers contrast beautifully with the .dark foU^ge 
of the evergreen spreading banian. 

My evenings at Tamsui are sometimes spent walking round 
and round the paths among the trees and groves, exercising, 
superintending, meditating. The order and beauty are refresh- 
ing, and the fine appearance of things is a help to the college. 
Chinese people and oflficials visit, wonder, and admire ; con- 
verts walk around and rejoice. Is such a part of mission work? 
Yes ; most emphatically, yes. I, for one, went among the 
heathen to try to elevate them by making known to them the 
character and purposes of God. Our God is a God of order. 
He loves beauty, and we should see his handiwork in trees, 
plants, and flowers ; moreover, we should endeavor to follow 
the order which is displayed so visibly throughout the God- 
created, star-studded universe. 

In Oxford College I addressed the students daily from one 
to five times. They always took copious notes. Subjects 
were regularly reviewed and the classes constantly drilled. 
On being questioned as to what lines of thought were most 
convincing, one who is a literary graduate said, "The fulfil- 
ment of prophecy, especially the resurrection of Jesus Christ." 
Another thought the ten plagues and their critical import 
would influence many if studied. But twenty out of twenty- 
five unhesitatingly declared that the reasoning from effect to 
cause, and particularly from design to designer, would deeply 
impress the native mind. Thus I have been right all along as 
to how best to present the eternal truth of Jehovah to Chinese 

The Bible is used as oiu" great text-book. Biblical geogra- 
phy and history are studied with special reference to Judea, 
Egypt, Persia, Greece, Syria, Arabia, Jerusalem, Rome, Baby- 
lon, Nineveh, Corinth, Ephesus. Courses of study are fol- 


lowed in the Old Testament and in the New Testament. A 
study is made of the lives of the great men of the Bible. 
Attention is given to the zoology, botany, and mineralogy of 
Bible times. Nor are the modern sciences neglected. Due 
prominence is given to all the important subjects in the cur- 
riculum of a Western college. Special attention is given to 
the systematic study of the doctrines of God's Word. The 
biblical doctrines of God, man, sm, the person and work of 
Christ, the church, sacraments, death, judgment, future rewards 
and punishments, with an examii..nion of proof-texts and 
arguments on all sides, are the subject of much study and ex- 

In the college are freshmen, students of several years' 

standing, and helpers who have had considerable experience 

in preaching. About a dozen students are Chinese, and the 

rest Pe-po-hoan. Perhaps the former surpassed the latter 

in mental acumen and unabated diligence; but it must be 

admitted that all studied with a commendable spirit, energy, 

and zeal. Every hour was turned to good account in the 

development of the physical, mental, and moral man. We 

devoted hours to church history, biblical theology, zoology, 

geography, astronomy. Addresses, varying from one to six, 

were given every day. The questions of the Shorter Catechism 

were all discussed and committed to memory. We met every 

night in the college hall for one or two hours, and there women 

from the Girls' School sat in the center, surrounded by the 

college boys. It would be impossible to estimate the sound, 

solid, and far-reaching results accruing from these continuous 

nightly meetings ; but a sketch of an evening in the college 

hall may be of interest. 

Promptly at seven o'clock the college bell is rung. Students 
file into their places along two sides and the end of the hall. 
Women from the Girls' School occupy the center; children 
take seat? in the front and corner ; onlookers gather about the 


door. In all, over a hundred busy workers assemble. The 
illness is serious indeed that will keep any one away at this 
hour; sometimes a student appears shaking with.mdarial fever 
and wrapped in a blanket. The desks are movable, so that 
all can sit closely together if necessary. On the platform are 
table, lamps, and generally fl'owers. Behind it, and in constant 
use, are blackboard, maps, and a frame containing twenty-four 
hymn-tunes neatly copied by a student on white cotton. On 
the table are laid copy-books ready for inspection. 

First we sing a hymn, then have a few words of prayer, in 
which one of the students leads. Children, then women, read 
and recite in turn and answer questions. All the exercises are 
enlivened by singing. There are no organs in North Formosa 
churches, and the truth is, we do' not feel in need of them. 
All the people, old and young, endeavor to take part in the 
service of praise ; and, whatever may be said of our music, we 
have never had indifferent, half-hearted singing. Foreigners 
of many nationaUties, who could not understand one word of 
the language, have enjoyed and heartily commended this part 
of our worship. Many have been evidently touched as they 
looked and listened. 

Our college drill is varied but orderly. One student takes 
the platform, pointer in hand, to indicate notes in the tune to 
be learned ; all in the hall stand and beat time with the right 
hand. One, with the children, leads off with the first line, and 
the rest chime in. A second verse may be sung by the women 
alone, the third by the students, the fourth by the whole band. 
One row of students may sing the first hne, another row the 
second, the women the third, and so on. No one knows when 
his turn will come, and so all are kept on the alert. If the 
sounds are not full and clear, we have a few minutes for cales- 
thenic exercises, especially such exercises as develop the throat 
and chest. Then they sing again. Scripture lessons, geogra- 
phy, history, or any subject may be taken up next. 


Students take turns in five-minute addresses on the platform. 
Each is criticized by his fellows, and any fault in the manner, 
dress, expression, or the matter is pointed out. New-comers 
tremble, but as 'months pass by they overcome bad habits, 
learn to stand fire, and become ready platform speakers. They 
develop their own natural talents without aping any one, and 
in time learn to speak in public with a confidence, and yet 
with a freedom from conceit, that could not be obtained with- 
out such persistent training. 

Ih the midst of all I often take twenty or thirty minutes to 
address all assembled on some biblical or scientific subject. 
Our drill and worship over, the women retire first, students 
follow, and all disperse for fresh studies. Sometimes there is 
a debate, sometimes an exhibition of magic-lantern views, with 
an address. No two evenings are exactly alike throughout the 
season. They are most enjoyable meetings. Cramming, 
dullness, and monotony have no place in Oxford College. 
Would that mission critics could see for themselves the glist- 
ening eyes and the eager faces of litde children, strong young 
men, and gray-haired women in, that crowded hall! Would 
that some echo of those soul-stirring songs of praise — many of 
them mountain airs — could reach my native land! In the 
midst of care, sickness, and toil, what an inspiration to hear 
those converts from heathenism, many of them preparing to 
carry Christ's blessed evangel into the darkness from which 
they have been led, ring out on the midnight air " The Lord's 
my Shepherd," or "A day's march nearer home"! 



Woman's ministry — Reaching Formosan women — A glimpse at Chinese 
social life — Tin-afrom birth to marriage — The foreign worker among 
native women — "Low-born barbarian" — Meaningless etiquette — 
Fever — The native Bible-woman — Her training — At v/ork — The 
Girls' School — Curriculum — Students — The plan that succeeds 

WHEN Jesus went through every city and village preach- 
ing, the Twelve went with him, " and certain women 
also." The great Head of the church knew well the need 
that existed, and would exist in all future ages, for the special 
ministrations of women in the living temple he was erecting. 
In North Formosa some of the most zealous and successful 
workers, who were one with the little band of students in oiu" 
early struggles, and who bravely, and almost single-handed, 
stemmed the tide of bitter persecution, were women, of whom 
fragrant memories are still cherished by the church there. 
With terrible odds against them, some of them lived arid died, 
clinging to the one living God with a simple confidence, te- 
nacity, and determination not easily understood by those who 
spend their lives in the walled gardens of Christendom. 

How is it possible to convey to Christians in Western lands 
any definite conception of the life of a Chinese woman? How 
is it possible to present the difficulty of bridging the chasm 
that exists between Circassian and Mongolian, or of reaching 
women to whom the customs, ways, and ideas of their Western 



sisters are altogether incomprehensible, and in many cases lu- 
dicrous and absurd ? But without some insight into Chinese 
social life one .cannot understand the nature and obstinacy of 
the difficulties in the way of reaching Formosan women with 
the gospel, or how those difficulties are to be overcome. Only 
a ghmpse can be given, but to those who care to think a 
glimpse may be full of meaning. 

The Chinese wife who is childless has a sorrowful hfe'and 
often a miserable death. Those who have no children of their 
own frequently buy or adopt a child, or the husband may take 
to his home a second wife. As might be expected, there is 
even less happiness when a second mistress has been installed. 
If the first wife be loved by her husband, all the more intense 
is her grief that no son of hers will ever worship at her hus- 
band's tomb. The fact is, barrenness is considered sufficient 
justification for ill-treating a wife, or casting her out on the 
cold charities of the world. 

When a daughter is born, little notice is taken of the event. 
If she should be deformed in any way, such as having a hare- 
lip, she may be immediately destroyed. If the parents already 
have girls, and are poor, even though it costs the mother a 
terrible struggle — for the maternal instinct cannot easily be 
eradicated — the child must sooner or later be put out of the 
way. As the struggle for life is' hard and keen, the sooner the 
unwelcome baby girl is sacrificed the better. 

But let us follow little Tin-a. If she come into this world 
in, say, a fairly well-to-do merchant's family, she is destined 
to grow into womanhood in a respectable circle. But ho-w 
many strange superstitions are connected with her childhood! 
When four years old her pink plump toes are bent tightly to- 
gether under the foot, cramped into position, -and firmly bound 
by strong cotton bandages. The foot is then thrust into a lit- 
tle pointed shoe, the large toe being the prominent part of the 
foot. This wretched shoe she wears night and day. Th? 


mother steels herself against the daughter's screams, for the 
feet must not be neglected, lest Tin-a's chances for a good 
marriage be spoiled, and she be doomed to slavery all her 

For several years she is allowed to play with her brothers 
about the door. She becomes the plaything of those around 
her, and is scolded, indulged, and beaten by turns. It is 
understood that she must be submissive to her brothers, who 
rule over her ; and in due course she must learn to cook rice, 
wash clothes, and to sew and embroider dresses. She must 
use every artificial and natural means of rendering herself out- 
wardly as attractive as possible, for she believes that the great 
end of existence is to be well married. Heart and intellect 
receive a wretched kind of training, if training it can be called. 
She is taught some Chinese proverbs and the moral maxims, 
which pass glibly over the tongue,, while her mind is filled with 
ill-natured gossip, low jests, filthy sayings, and a thousand 
slavish superstitions. 

When about ten years of age she is confined to the house, 
and no man, save those of her own family, is allowed to con- 
verse with her. If strangers enter her father's house she may 
peep through the cracks from an inner room, but she must 
■on no account permit herself to be seen. Whatever she may 
be in reality, the parents, who are looking forward to a few 
hundred dollars at least when she shall leave their home as a 
bride, represent her as being endowed with numberless virtues ; 
and she herself, at New Year's or on heathen festivals, with 
the aid of silks, satins, powder, jewels, embroidery, and per- 
fume, must make a fine show. Above all things, she must, 
with due amount of simpering, profess to be so exceedingly 
modest that she cannot bear to have men look upon her. 
This period of close confinement is an anxious one to the par- 
ents, because such is the state of society that, should she break 
through the restraints and be seen alone on the streets, all their 


labor would be lost, the family would be disgraced, and the 
girl's chances of marriage ruined forever. One would like to 
draw the veil over such a state of affairs, but we are facing the 
fact that the morals in heathen lands are very low. Could we 
expect them to be higher? Perhaps not, and yet the picture 
has a brighter side. It is under such conditions that the power 
of the gospel of Christ is seen. Already its power has been 
manifested in raising out of such siuroundings women and 
girls who become neat and cleanly in appearance, ladylike in 
deportment, and lovely in character. 

When Tin-a is about fourteen years of age, a go-between, 
who is generally an aunt or some quick-witted old woman, is 
secured. This almost indispensable lady, by miking many 
journeys and holding many conversations, arranj^es with the 
parents of some young man for a betrothal, which is usually 
settled in consideration of a sum of money, say from one hun- 
dred to three hundred dollars, which is paid over to the father 
and mother of the expectant bride. The augurs having been 
consulted, and an auspicious day fixed upon, a feast is pre- 
pared at the bridegroom's home. The bride is carried thither 
in a closely covered sedan-chair, over which a red cloth is 
thrown. After bowing with him before the ancestral tablets 
and household gods, and going through many other ceremo- 
nies, she belongs henceforth, soul and body, to this man and to 
his mother, to use or misuse as they see fit. Those of us who 
love the Chinese most are saddest to confess the cruel bondage 
that too often faces the Chinese bride. 

And now the question comes. How are women in such a 
.state of society, with such social customs, and in such a coun- 
try as Formosa, to be reached and taught the gospel of Jesus? 
A foreign lady goes to take up her abode in Tamsui, Rosy- 
cheeked, healthy, and hopeful, she thinks she can do her own 
housework while studying the language. In this she proceeds 
for a few months. But the hot weather comes, and with it 


fever. The color gonfe from her face, and strength from her 
arm, the lady must hand the housework over to a Chinese 
male cook. She studies faithfully, but the Chinese language 
is of all things earthly the most intricate and difficult to mas- 
ter. Even if she learn to articulate clearly, she is surprised to 
find at the end of one year how few ideas she can express. 
Enthusiastic, perchance, and eager to be at work, she goes 
out among the Chinese, who crowd about to stare at her. 
Her dress is not like theirs, and some dispute as to whether 
she is a man or woman. Presently the cry is taken up, and 
it follows her everywhere: "Barbarian! low-born barbarian!" 
The very fact of her being there in a foreign land, far away 
from relatives, lowers her in their estimation ; for however 
much the heathen in North Formosa have learned during the 
last twenty years about Western lands, they are so busy earn- 
ing their rice that they will not take time to study Western 
ways ctud customs. The foreign lady, in the simple act of 
going out on foot into their streets, offends against their ideas 
of propriety. 

She has heard, perhaps, that a little girl, with whose parents 
she is acquainted, is ill, and with Christian sympathy and 
desire to help she makes her way to their home, taking some 
delicacy with her. They may not seem frightened, and, pos- 
sibly with a great show of welcome, they invite her in. She 
tries to speak a little to them, tells them of one God, but she 
feels helpless amid their chatter and questions about dress, hat, 
buttons, and why foreign ladies bind their waists and not their 
feet. They urge and entreat her to stay, to drink tea, to come 
again. In time she will learn that a great deal of this is only 
part of Chinese etiquette and politeness, empty and meaning- 
less. The truth is that the Chinese are amazed at her utter 
disregard of the ordinary rules of polite society, that forbid 
visiting in this way where there is sickness, and forbid any but 
members of the family entering the sick-room. They scarcely 


wait till she is out of hearing before they begin to ridicule 
barbarians in general, and this one in paVticular. The foreign 
lady, kind-hearted, sincere, trying to converse in broken Chi- 
nese, and really anxious to do "good — who could fail to sym- 
pathize with her u«der such circumstances ? Time and the 
levehng power of Christian influence may change these cus- 
toms ; meantime they must be reckoned with, and stolid facts 
faced with open eyes. 

The foreign lady finds she is confined almost entirely to the 
seaport ; for a week or ten days inland means more fever, and 
the suspension of her work for a time, if not permanently. 
To go over mountains to join Bible-women working in the 
Kap-tsu-lan plain is simply out of the question. Apart from 
the fact that the way is often impassable, the climate is so 
damp and the region so unwholesome that even native work- 
ers dread it. No foreigner has ever spent many days there 
without suffering, and no medical man who knows the country 
would dare give his consent to a foreign lady rnaking the 
attempt. Even with the best of care in the north she may 
often be prostrated with fever. At the end of the fourth or 
fifth year of faithful study and effort, compared with the little 
Chinese woman at her side, she is still almost helpless in teach- 
ing. This native Bible-woman is thoroughly familiar with the 
language and customs of her own people, and has been trained 
in the Holy Scriptures so that she can quote and explain with 
aptness and effect, while her foreign sister struggles with the 
idioms of the language, and is in perpetual danger of violating 
one of the thousand rules of Chinese society. 

Let us now turn to any one of these native Bible-women 
and see what she is accomplishing. Who is she ? What is 
her history? How does she work? There is A So, a gray- 
haired widow, one who has reared a family, has grandchildren, 
and will, therefore, command respect. Some of her sons are 
married, and she has an influence over their households. At 


one time she knew not of Jesus, but a chapel was opened near 
her door. At first she reviled the " foreign devil," but hked 
to hear the singing through her lattice-window. Then she 
listened to the preacher, and noticed the students, who seemed 
so neat, clever, and affable. At last she began to enjoy the 
services in the building, and more and more was delighted 
with expositions of the truth. Especially did she love the 
psalms and hymns, for she found comfort in their consolatory 
truths. Her idols were thrown away and she publicly declared 
herself a Christian. By and by Canadian ladies gave a large 
sum of money, and the Girls' School was erected. Having 
spent several sessions there, A So was sent to a chapel, where 
her time was fully occupied in teaching children and young 
girls, visiting the neighbors, answering their thousand queries 
regarding the mission, the missionaries, God, and heaven, and 
in telling them of the truth that she had learned, and of how 
she came to cast her idols away. She reads, and they are 
surprised ; prays, and they listen ; sings, and they are delighted. 
She finds out their ailments and afflictions, and, in common 
with the preacher and his wife, she endeavors to comfort them. 
She knows when and how to appear in a neighbor's dwelling, 
and how. to act in such a way that her visits may be accept- 
'able. She is respected on account of her gray hairs, neat ap- 
pearance, and woman-like manners, and the heathen women 
look up to her because, hke the preacher's wife, she is better 
posted in all the affairs of life than they are. She sympathizes 
with the women, for she has suffered just as they. She knows 
all about foot-binding. Sickness and death have been in her 
home, and when the little ones they love are taken away she 
knows how to sympathize, and with the comfort wherewith 
she herself was comforted of God in the dark days of her own 
sorrow she goes in to bereaved mothers, and not in vain talks 
of the Shepherd and his fold. Every Saturday she visits the 
houses of new converts, and tells women to be ready at a certain 


hour the next day, when she will call for them to go to wor- 
ship. Gradually and almost imperceptibly the women are 
drawn toward the truth, and they scarcely know how much 
they have learned to love this devoted Bible-woman till she 
is transferred to another station. Not a few of these Bible- 
women are most enthusiastic and efficient workers, and all are 
of great assistance to the native preachers. Some of them 
have been the means of bringing whole families to Christ, and 
more and more is the Master's seal set to the work of these 
native workers. 

As a college was needed to train men for the ministry, so also 
a large school building was required at some central point where 
women and girls could spend months at a time, under constant 
supervision and such influences as would remodel the lives of 
the older, and direct in the right channels those of the younger. 
The ladies of the Woman's Foreign Missionary Society of the 
Presbyterian Church in Canada came forward with hearty 
enthusiasm and gave the necessary funds for the building. 
Near the close of 1883 we began the work of construction on 
the same grounds as Oxford College, and but a few rods away 
from it. We often worked till midnight with a large gang of 
men. Students would stand outside and sing hymns to cheer 
the workmen. In eleven weeks the neat, roomy structure of 
cut stone was ready to be opened. It is the same size and on 
the same frontage as Oxford College. The front door leads 
directly into the hall or assembly-room. On each side of this 
is a small class-room. Behind the hall is an open court, sur-- 
rounded by dormitories, and there are kitchen, servants' bed- 
rooms, and storage-rooms. There is no need for comforts 
such as are to be found in a European or American ladies' 
college. These would only unfit the women for their itown 
homes, where foreign luxuries are not to be had. A sufficiency 
of light and ventilation is most important and is amply pro- 
vided for. 


On the whole, only native preachers are employed ; there- 
fore running expenses have amounted to but a small fraction 
of what they would otherwise have been. Two native matrons, 
a preacher, and his wife live in the building. Much of the 
teaching — indeed, most of it — has been entirely voluntary. 
Older ones, or those further advanced, have taught the new- 
comers and little children. Often it is convenient to have a 
preacher's wife and children, or his mother, in the Girls' School 
while he is at college ; so that in this home for Christian work- 
ers there are gray-naired women and little children, daughters 
and daughters-in-law, all busy reading, writing, and singing 
side by side. Teachers from Oxford College can easily carry 
on the work of the two institutions. The English language is 
not taught. If desired, a Chinese teacher can teach them to 
read and write their own characters. Native women can sur- 
pass a foreigner in teaching the romanized colloquial ; that 
is, Chinese words spelled with English letters. That is the 
hope of our women, for it is useless to expect them to acquire 
the Chinese characters. Each one who learns the romanized 
colloquial can read her own Bible. There is a girl there who, 
when seventeen years of age, learned in one month to read 
the Catechism of the New Testament, Chinese girls and 
women are not in need of foreign ladies to teach them sewing, 
dressmaking, and embroidery ; they are experts in the art. In 
other mission fields it is very different. 

It is inconvenient, if not impossible, throughout North For- 
mosa to secure girls, Chinese or Pe-po-hoan, to remain in the 
Girls' School at Tamsui for any great length of time. It is 
demanding too much in the present state of our work to expect 
poor little girls to journey from the east coast away from 
their parents. There is a hard struggle for existence, and the 
larger girls cannot be spared from the Kap-tsu-lan plain. In 
considering a sensible and useful plan for the education of the 
girls in any mission, th* daughters of those employed by the 


mission, and whose interest it is to patronize the institutions of 
their employers, must not be taken into account. A school 
managed on those principles, and reaching only those selfishly 
interested, is not likely to be largely influential. Our object 
must be to reach the daughters of independent farmers, 
mechanics, laborers, and merchants. To attain that in China 
the plans adopted must be large, flexible, and Chinese-like. 
Recognizing these fundamental facts, the Girls' School was 
established. Bible-women are there trained for service at 
every station in the mission. These are " looked out " by the 
native preachers just as candidates for the ministry are in 
Christian lands. They are bright Christian women, and come 
up from the various churches, often bringing with them two 
or three girls, the daughters of converts there. It is entirely 
Chinese-like for a mother to intrust her daughter to another 
woman who will care for her while absent from home. Some- 
times the Bible-women bring their own daughters, daughters- 
in-law, or other relatives. In this way the Girls' School has 
had as many as eighty during one session. 

The women are taught reading, writing, and singing, Bible 
history and geography, the Scripture catechisms, and also at- 
tend addresses in the college during the day and take part in 
recitations and other exercises in the evening. They are 
trained in methods of teaching, and in every way equipped 
for their work. Then the> .re sent to stations where their 
gifts will yield the best service. In this way a hundred httle 
communities are reached, and women and girls. Christian and 
heathen, in the remotest part of the mission are brought into 
touch with the stronger and healthier life at the center. 

I am not speaking for other missions or other missionaries. 
Neither am I theorizing about work in Formosa. I am simply 
explaining the plan adopted there, and stating results which 
are evident and verifiable. After an experience of more than 
twenty years I may be permitted to say that, in my opinion, 


only by some such large, flexible, and Chinese-like plan will 
North Formosa ever be evangelized. The expense of main- 
taining a large foreign staff is so great, the language and social 
customs of the people present such formidable obstacles, the 
climatic conditions are so wasteful of life, making the field, 
except in and about Tamsui, a hungry devourer of men, and 
the success which by God's manifest favor has attended the 
work of those native Bible-women has been so real and abid- 
ing, that I have stood and still stand, now as confidently as 
ever, for the plan that is least expensive, most effective, and 
that succeeds. In North Formosa that plan is native workers 
for native women. 



Importance of medical missions — Native doctors — A doctor's charges — 
Classification of disease? — Diagnosis — Diseases of the seasons — The 
medicine-man — Cures for cholera, catarrh, dyspepsia — Malignant 
malaria — Treatment by Tauist, Buddhist, sorcerer, doctor — Malarial 
poison — Foreign treatment — Dentistry — First attempt — Instruments 
— Methods and results — MacKay Hospital — Influence of medical 
work on mission 

THE importance of medical missons does not any longer 
need to be emphasized. It is admitted by all who know 
the history of modern missionary work. From the very begin- 
ning of our work in Formosa heed was given to the words and 
example of the Lord, and by means of the healing art a wide 
door for immediate usefulness was opened. No part of my 
preparatory training proved more practically helpful than the 
medical studies pursued in Toronto and New York. I found 
the people suffering from various ailments and diseases, and 
the power to relieve their pain and heal their diseases won for 
the mission grateful friends and supporters. 

But it must not be supposed that there are no doctors in 
Formosa. There are large numbers of them, and the practice 
of medicine, if it is not scientific, is certainly interesting and 
deserving of study. There are no authorized schools of medi- 
cine, no examinations, and no degrees. Custom is the only 
law, and success the only diploma. By experimenting on 
himself or on others a man may come to know something of- 



the medicinal values of certain compounds. Or he may be 
associated with an older practitioner and learn from experi- 
ence. Or by studying books on medicine and copying the 
important parts, he may learn enough of theory to begin prac- 
tice. One who has himself been a sufferer and tried many 
remedies has all the knowledge required for prescribing for 
other people. A clerk in a medicine-shop, by reading and fill- 
ing prescriptions sent in by doctors, may begin hifnself to pre- 
scribe. Failing in other lines, a man may purchase a stock of 
recipes and set out as a doctor. To be sure, one must have 
either knowledge or shrewdness; otherwise he will lose the 
confidence and patronage of the people, and then his occupa- 
tion will be gone. 

A Chinese doctor's charges would not be regarded as exor- 
bitant by Western physicians or patients. For one call one 
hundred cas/i — equal to about ten cents — will be expected. 
The regular practitioner holds a high place in the estimation 
of the people, and his services are fairly remunerative. The 
traveling doctor, however, who generally combines sleight-of- 
hand tricks with the sale of plasters and nostrums, does not 
enjoy their confidence or respect. 

The native doctors classify diseases as either internal or ex- 
ternal, and it is but rarely that both classes of disease are 
treated by the same man. As internal diseases are more mys- 
terious because of their secret operations, those who devote 
themselves to their cure are counted worthy of greater honor 
than those whose specialty is external sores and wounds. 

Diagnosis is made by feeling the pulse. The doctor seats 
himself opposite his patient, whose hand rests on a piece of 
cloth on the table. If the patient be a male, the doctor, using 
his own right hand, first feels the pulse of the patient's left 
hand, then that of his right ; if the patient be a female, the 
doctor, using his own left hand, takes first her right and then 
her left. He places his thumb on the prominent part of the 


bone of the wrist, and the first three fingers on the pulse. The 
different states of the pulse are described by five different 
words. The first means that it is high and full ; the second, 
that it is low or deep and slow ; the third, that it is deeper and 
lower still ; the fourth, that it feels as if empty ; and the fifth, 
that all motion is gone and nothing can be felt. 

The heart and liver are supposed to produce these different 
states- of pulse. It is believed that the heart has seven open- 
ings, through which wind and an evil principle enter, causing 
these changes in the pulse. Diseases differ according to the 
seasons of the year. Those of the spring are supposed to be 
caused by the liver, those of the summer by the heart, those 
of the autumn by the lungs, and those of the winter by the 

The doctor invariably v^Tites out his prescription, which is 
taken to the drug-shop and filled. The druggist weighs out 
the various ingredients with considerable care, and wraps them 
together in a paper, inclosing the prescription along with the 
medicine, and marking the names of the articles on the outside 
of the package. The masses are kept in ignorance, however, 
for very familiar substances are given names quite unknown 
in the language of the common people. Minerals, rocks, and 
shells are often ground to a powder and roasted. Vegetables, 
roots, flowers, barks, and seeds are used as infusions. 

In matters of surgery the natives acknowledge the superior- 
ity of foreign practitioners, but in deahng with internal diseases 
preeminence is claimed for their own doctors. It is only slowly 
that their ignorance is exposed and their superstitious notions 
overthrown. When one thinks of many of their remedies one 
wonders at the simplicity of patients that makes such prescrib- 
ing profitable. 

For Asiatic cholera many trust to a counter-irritant and ex- 
ternal applications. The skin on several parts of the body is 
pierced with needles, and jerked or pinched between the 


knuckles of the index and middle fingers until it becomes red. 
Hair and ginger are sometimes mixed with camellia-oil and 
rubbed over the body. A specific for catarrh is made out of 
three ingredients infused in boiling water — a chip cut from a 
coflSn after it has been put into the grave, a piece of the hem- 
pen mourning-clothes, and a handful of the earth out of the 
grave or taken from beside the coffin after it has been lowered. 
The tartar allowed to collect around the teeth— of which, I 
can bear testimony, a supply may be easily obtained — is con- 
sidered a valuable antidote for dog-bite. The sallow counte- 
nance and disagreeable flatulence of a dyspeptic may be cured 
by a diet of dog's flesh, that of a puppy being preferable, and 
that of a mad dog not to be despised. A common remedy for 
gastritis is jerking the skin of the neck with the fingers after 
steeping them in warm water or spirituous liquor. If an in- 
fant's skin be of a black or dark color, pieces of. a broken fry- 
ing-pan are ground together with a screeching noise until the 
child begins to cry. If a man has been exposed to winds or 
rain, and painful cracks in the skin result, it is supposed that 
the real cause of the trouble is that the man offended the 
moon by pointing at her with his middle finger ; and to be 
cured he must face the offended mistress of the night, placing 
his hands together as in the act of worship, and politely bow, 
humbly confessing his sin, and asking forgiveness. 

It must not be inferred from what has just been said that 
the Chinese are simple-minded and gullible beyond all others 
that dwell upon the earth. It does seem incomprehensible, 
however, that so shrewd a people can be deceived and Winded 
by such ignorant quackery. And yet is it so very strange ? 
What about the most enlightened nations of Europe in the 
last century? What about some Western peoples and coun- 
tries to-day ? One does not need to travel far to find those 
who are willing to be duped. 

The most malignant disease, the one most common and 


most dreaded by the people, is, as has beer; suggested, ma- 
larial fever. They suppose the disease to be caused by the 
patient unluckily treading on mock-money.put in the street or 
on the roadside by a priest or sorcerer; or by a conflict be- 
tween the hot and cold principles in natiu-e ; or by two devils, 
one belonging to the negative principle in nature, fanning the 
patient, thus causing the chills, and the other belonging to the 
positive principle, blowing a furnace and producing heat and 
fever. But to mention the names of these devils would be to 
incur their displeasure, and so the people never use the name 
" chills and fever," but call it " devils' fever," " beggar's fever," 
or some other harmless name. 

The treatment for malaria depends upon the adviser. The 
Tauist priest makes charms out of peach-leaves, green bam- 
boo, and yellow paper, which are tied around a button of the 
sick one's clothes, or to the cue. Sometimes red thread is tied 
around the wrist, and kept there for weeks at a time. Or a 
stamp, like that of Lau-tsze, the founder of Tauism, is pressed 
on the back. But perhaps most effective of all is for the priest 
to arouse the devils by ringing a bell or blowing a kind of 
horn, after which he proceeds to drive them out with a whip. 

The Buddhist priest prescribes tea made from the ashes of 
burnt incense, or he writes such a word as " arsenic " on a 
.puffed cake, which he puts into boiling water and, when cool, 
gives it to the patient. Failing other remedies, he sends the 
afflicted to the nearest temple, where he must remain for some 
time under the table of an idol to escape the attacks of the 
designing devils. 

The sorcerer takes three bamboo sticks about three feet in 
length, ties red cloth around one end of each, and charms the 
fever demons away from those possessed. Or he makes a 
figure Hke a man out of rice-straw, into which he invites the 
wicked spirits to enter, and having carried the straw man some 
distance from the house, he presents to the spirits an offering 


of mock-money, pork, duck eggs, rice, and vegetables. As 
effective a remedy as any other used by the sorcerer is the 
tying of seven hairs plucked out of a black dog around the 
hand of the fever patient. 

The native doctor will talk wisely about the disagreement 
between the two principles in nature, which nothing but his 
medicines will overcome. The chief ingredients of his remedies 
are seeds of plantain, prepared orange-peel, licorice root, root 
of white peony, Pterocarpus Jlavus, Sida, Panax (ginseng), 
Levisticum, Bupieurum, Scutellaria, Clematis libanotis, and 

I have no more faith in the prescriptions of the native doc- 
tors than I have in those of the priests or sorcerers. Indeed, 
I have known doctors to write out prescriptions for their pa- 
tients and collect their fees, out for their own use they kept 
carefully folded in paper from five to twenty grains of quinine. 

To this dreaded disease foreigners give such names as sun- 
pain, intermittent fever, chills and fever, fever and ague, dumb 
ague, jungle fever, African fever, and I have heard it called 
Tamsui fever. Its real cause, no doubt, is malarial poison 
generated by the decomposing of organic matter, and its in- 
tensity depends on the constitution, climate, and surroundings 
of the sufferer. I spent weeks with the savages in the moun- 
tains near Mount Sylvia, and found them generally healthy. 
Pe-po-hoan farmers moved into that neighborhood and began 
to build their huts and cultivate the land. Within one week 
the entire settlement was prostrated with fever in its most in- 
tense form, and the sufferings of those poor savages were sad 
to see. Another instance of the poison being generated by 
the upturning of the decomposed matter in the soil occurred 
in connection with the building of the Girls-' School at Tamsui, 
where, after digging down several feet for the foundation, the 
workmen suffered more or less until the building was finished. 
A singular thing is that one limb or one hand or one side may 


be affected and may go through all the stages, and the other 
parts of the body remain as before. 

Several methods of treatment are followed. A first attack, 
in a good constitution, may be overcome by anything that will 
produce a good sweat ; but when the system is saturated with 
the poison, long-continued and persistent treatment is required. 
Lemons cut in slices and boiled till all the juice is extracted 
make not only a refreshing drink, but, if used liberally, an un- 
questionably good medicine during a fever attack. I have 
used Podophyllum and Taraxacutfi in pill form at first, then 
frequent doses of quinine, followed, if necessary, by perchloraie 
of iron. A hquid diet, exercise, and fresh air are always in- 
sisted on. My prayer is that some discovery may be made 
that will do in the case of malaria what vaccination does in 
the case of smallpox, and that by killing or eradicating this 
devouring poison life in tropical lands may be made less cruel 
alike for native and foreigner. 

It is not an uncommon thing in Formosa to find half the 
inhabitants of a town prostrated by malarial fever at once. I 
have seen households of twenty or thirty with not one able to 
do any work. In such circumstances the native preachers, 
living in the midst of the sufferers and knowing their life, are 
able, by means of foreign medicine, in the use of which they 
have been trained, to do incalculable service to afflicted hu- 
manity, and so to commend the gospel of their Master, who 
"healed many who were sick of divers diseases." 

Dentistry should be mentioned, along with the treatment of 
fever, as a most important department of medical mission^y 
work in Formosa. Toothache, resulting from severe malaria 
and from betel-nut chewing, cigar-smoking, and other filthy 
habits, is the abiding torment of tens of thousands of both 
Chinese and Aborigines. There are numberless superstitions 
cherished by the people regaxding the growth, defects, and 
treatment of the teeth ; and the ways by which they aUempt 










to drive out the black-headed worm, believed to be gnawing 
inside and causing toothache, are, some of them, amusing, 
some disgusting, and some, indeed, ingenious. 

The methods by which the natives extract teeth are both 
crude and cruel. Sometimes the offending tooth is pulled 
with a strong string, or pried out with the blade of a pair of 
scissors. The traveling doctor uses a pair of pincers or small 
tongs. It is not to be wondered at that the people all dread 
the operation, as jaw-breaking, excessive hemorrhage, fainting, 
and even death frequently result from the barbarous treatment. 
My first attempt to extract a tooth was in 1873. On leav- 
ing Tek-chham with the students one day we were followed 
by a dozen soldiers who had been sent to watch our move- 
ments. One of their number was suffering intense pain from 
a decayed tooth ; he said, " There is a worm in it." I had no 
forceps, but after examining it I got a piece of hard wood, 
shaped it as desired, and with it removed the tooth. It was 
primitive dentistry, to be sure, but the tooth was out, and the 
poor soldier wept for joy and was most profuse in his grati- 
tude. Years after, when a number of soldiers were reviling 
the "barbarian missionary," a tall officer stepped forward and 
reproved them, saying that I was the teacher who relieved him 
of the aching tooth. 

My first dental instruments were very rude, having been 
hammered out by a native blacksmith according to my direc- 
tions. Now I have the very best instruments made in 
New York. The lance is rarely used, and the key, hook, 
punch, or screw, never. A chair is not needed, and with 
a hundred other sufferers waiting their turn any elaborate 
preparations would be a waste of time. The Chinese have 
considerable nerve, and endure the pain of an operation won- 
derfully well. 

Our usual custom in touring through the country is to take 
our stand in an open space, often on the stone steps of a tem- 


pie, and, after singing a hymn or two, proceed to extract teeth, 
and then preach the message of the gospel. The sufferer 
usually stands while the operation is being performed, and the 
tooth, when removed, is laid on his hand. To keep the tooth 
would be to awaken suspicions regarding us in the Chinese 
mind. Several of the students are experts with the forceps, and 
we have frequently extracted a hundred teeth in less than an 
hour. I have myself, since 1873, extracted over twenty-one 
thousand, and the students and preachers have extracted nearly 
half that number. The people now know that they do not 
need to suffer the excruciating pain of toothache, and that 
they need not run any risk in obtaining relief. The priests and 
other enemies of the mission may persuade people that fever 
and other diseases have been cured, not by our medicines, but 
by the intervention of the gods ; but the relief from toothache 
is too unmistakable, and because of this tooth-extracting has 
been more than anything else effective in breaking down pre- 
judice and opposition. 

Patients are treated in all the cities and villages where we 
may happen to be. Medicines are given, and treatment pre- 
scribed for them in their homes. The headquarters of this 
department, however, like those of all others, are at Tamsui. 
There is the hospital building, with its wards and necessary 
equipment. At first I had only one room, but in 1880 a com- 
modious building for hospital purposes was erected at a cost 
of three thousand dollars, the gift of Mrs. MacKay, of De- 
troit, in memory of her husband. Captain MacKay, and is now 
known as the " MacKay Hospital." This has been a great 
blessing to thousands of people. Referring to the report for 
1894, during which time I have been on furlough in Canada, 
I find that thirty-one hundred and fifty-six new patients and 
seventy-five hundred and eighty old patients were treated in 
the year. 

Now it is not claimed that all treated were cured, or that all 


cured became Christians. Large numbers were cured during 
these twenty-three years, many more were relieved, and the 
services rendered made them much more kindly disposed to- 
ward the mission. Many became converts themselves, and 
their example told with their relatives and friends. The reflex 
influence of ali this medical work cannot be estimated. The 
direct results in the conversion of patients cannot be told. We 
could tell of many interesting cases. Bun Hien, a man of 
fifty-six years, almost blind, formerly a ringleader of bad char- 
acters, was ctured of his bhndness and converted to God, bring- 
ing his children and grandchildren with him. A young woman 
who took opium to commit suicide was treated, and recovered ; 
and as a result her father-in-law, sixty-two years of age, came 
to the chapel and believed the gospel, living consistently on to 
the close of his life, A man named Chiu was badly burned, 
and a native preacher dressed his woimds successfully, so that 
they were healed ; and Chiu came to the chapel, bringing his 
seven children, and they all became Christians. But space 
would fail to tell of Chhi Hok, of Lim O, a gong-beater, of 
Kho Ban, whose son was healed after being gored by a water- 
buffalo, of Chhi, a fever patient, of Ku, who was bit by a dog, 
and Ong, an opium-smoker, of a Confucianist teacher who was 
a victim of "furious insanity" — space would fail to tell of 
these and of hundreds of others who by being healed of physi- 
cal infirmities were led to a knowledge of the Saviour who 
heals the great trouble of the soul. Many of them were ad- 
versaries of the truth, and were brought to consult the foreigner 
only as a last resort ; but out of enemies they became friends. 
Some of them are now in the presence of their Lord ; others 
are constant in his service in the church on earth. 



Reported hostility — Sympathetic relations in Formosa — Experiences with 
foreigners — Foreign kindness to native preachers — "Barbarian" 
rarely heard — Address and presentation from foreign community 

IT is a common complaint on the part of missionaries that 
foreigners, whether merchants residing in the country or 
travelers passing through it, are either indifferent or hostile to 
Christian missions. One reads of the haughty contempt, 
sometimes ill concealed, of the foreign community for mission- 
aries and their work. One hears of a chasm deep and wide 
between the missionaries and the other foreigners in the cities 
and port towns of China and Japan. We are told by mer- 
chants, officials, and travelers that the missionaries are weak, 
narrow-minded, entirely without influence, and that their work 
is a failure or a fraud. Missionaries, on the other hand, hint 
that the foreign merchants are worldly, the mihtary and naval 
officers and men loose hvers, the consuls unsympathetic and 
unspiritual, and the average traveler a one-eyed, prejudiced, 
vagabond globe-trotter, whose presence in the vicinity of a 
mission is a distinct calamity. 

It is not for me to speak of things as they exist in other 
mission fields, although I should be sorry to think of what one 
hears regarding the relations of foreigners to mission work as 
having any very substantial basis in fact. There may be a 
chasm such as has been referred to, and, if so, it has probably 



been dug by both parties. But speaking of Formosa, and 
looking back oyer the entire history of our mission there, I am 
bound to say that the most cordial relations have ever existed 
between the workers in the mission and the resident or tran- 
sient foreign community. Again and again in the preceding 
chapters reference has been made to kindnesses shown and 
services rendered by European and American merchants, and 
by consuls, commissioners of customs, and physicians. The 
representatives of the great foreign firms of Tait & Co., Boyd 
& Co., Douglas, La Praik & Co., as well as others in the 
employ of the Chinese, have always taken a genuine interest 
in our work. Consuls and commissioners of customs like 
Frater, Allen, Hosie, Ayrton, Morse, Hall, Bourne, and Hob- 
son have been my personal friends, and I recall their names 
with gratitude. More than one trip into savage territory was 
relieved by the company of one or another of those gentlemen. 

Hobson, when commissioner of customs, went with me 
once, and neither of us will forget our experiences in the 
mountains. Shivering with cold, we spent the greater part of 
one day in a hut filled with smoke from the wet firewood, and 
at night poor Hobson was kept awake, partly, perhaps, by the 
savage atmosphere of the place, and partly by the noise of a 
dry deerskin in which I had wrapped myself, and which at 
every movement cracked like the going off of a pistol. I 
remember, too, one hot evening when Hobson and Dr. Ringer 
walked from Tamsui to Pat-li-hun to share with me such a 
dinner as I had not seen before in a tweh-emonth. 

Medical men have invariably manifested a desire to assist 
our work, and have rendered valuable services in many ways. 
Dr. Ringer not only waited upon me in times of serious illness, 
but during his residence at the port of Tamsui rendered gra- 
tuitous service to the mission, having our hospital under his 

Scientists from various countries have visited us at Tamsui, 


and an hour or two in my museum secured for the mission 
their sympathy and interest. They saw there what would take 
them years to discover for themselves, and not infrequently 
have they been made friends of foreign missions by accom- 
panying us on a tour of the chapels. 

One Sabbath in 1873, when at Go-ko-khi, I was surprised 
by the sudden appearance of a tall stranger, who saluted me 
by name with an accent that suggested the Stars and Stripes. 
He was J. B. Steere, an American scientist, now professor in 
the University of Ann Arbor, Michigan, who was making a 
tour through the tropics, collecting specimens for the museum 
of his college. He became our guest at Tamsui, and for a 
month we had delightful intercourse together. He took great 
interest in my students, and once during' my absence, when he 
was left in full possession for several days, he undertook to 
teach the students two tunes. He did not know the language, 
but he could use a hymn-book in the romanized colloquial. 
He put the notes of the tunes on the blackboard and drilled the 
students in singing them, and on my return I was greeted 
with the One Hundredth and the One Hundred and Twenty- 
first psalms, sung to tunes that are still favorites, and are called 
the "botanist's tunes" to this day by those who were in the 
class then. 

So I might go on to tell of ship-captains, officers, and 
engineers who have in different ways rendered aid to our work 
in Formosa. High and low have expressed their sympathy, 
and the foreign residents have gone out of their way to show 
kindness to the native preachers and converts. British Am- 
bassador O'Connor and British Admiral Salmon visited Oxford 
College, as did also the commander of a British man-of-war, 
and, addressing the students, myself interpreting, spoke in the 
kindliest terms of greeting and good will. I have found for- 
eigners of all nationalities ready to acknowledge their indebt- 
edness to Christianity, and willing to help the mission and 


missionaries. The fact that they were not themselves mission- 
aries gave pecuhar emphasis to their words, not only in Europe 
and America, but also in heathen communities. In ret-urn the 
students and converts have been taught to treat with respect 
and honor all foreigners, and the contemptuous epithet " bar- 
barian," so often cast at foreigners twenty years ago, is rarely 
heard in North Formosa to-day. 

That the- relations existing between the mission and the for- 
eign community are sympathetic and cordial is testified to by 
the address, engrossed on silk, and accompanied by a magnifi- 
cent telescope, presented to me on the eve of my departure 
for Canada in 1893. I value this address, even though it 
does me honor overmuch, and I have consented to its repro- 
duction here because it expresses in unmistakable terms the 
interest of the entire foreign population in the work into which 
I have put my life. 

"To Rev. G. L. MacKay, D.D., on the eve of his departure from 


"Tamsui, 17th August, 1893. 

" Dr. MacKay : We here assembled felt that we could not 
let you depart without wishing you God-speed and a pleasant 
voyage home, and expressing our regard for you, and our 
estimation of the great work you have so nobly undertaken in 
Formosa, and carried on so successfully during the past twenty 

" We have not always given expression to our thought, but 
we have highly appreciated your great success, and the mar- 
velous progress you have, by God's help, been able to make 
in getting at the hearts of the Chinese people around us ; a 
success which, we think, is without parallel in the history of 
Christian missions in China. 

" You cannot but regard with much thankfulness and satis- 
faction the great and noble work you have been engaged upon, 


and to Which you have devoted your life these many years. 
In material blessings alone, resulting from your labors, resides 
sufficient cause to make any man proud and happy; and if 
there were nothing else to show than the good feelings be- 
tween natives and foreigners, due to your teaching, that alone 
would be sufficient cause for triumph. Those of us who 
remember Formosa as it was at the time of your arrival recog- 
nize a great alteration for the better in the demeanor of the 
natives generally ; and we ascribe the improvement in a great 
measure to you. Suspicion has given place to confidence, and 
the most timid never dream of fearing molestation, let them 
roam the country where they will. Who with time to ramble 
can forget the neat and wholesome-looking mission chapels 
scattered broadcast through the land ? And who can fail to 
remember the bright and cheerful welcome received at such 
spots as Sin-tiam, when on pleasure bent amid the glorious 
scenery of Formosa the Beautiful; the kindly reception and 
smiling welcome, the glad readiness to anticipate one's wants, 
the keen desire to make ovir stay at the mission station com- 
fortable, and to give us a bright memory to look back on? 
All this is the outcome of your teaching and your influence.. 

" Besides the admiration and respect we feel for your work, 
and the gratitude for the benefit we derive from the good feel- 
ing between Chinese and foreigners, which you have done so 
much to develop, we also feel that we have even, as a com- 
munity, a special relationship with Kai Bok-su. You have 
been a standing symbol and example to us of faith in the 
Unseen, especially at those times when one or another has 
passed from .among us and from the visible world. You have 
been ever ready to sympathize with us and help us, and to 
remind us of the great realities, sharing with us, as only such 
a man as yourself can, in all our last offices for those who have 
gone from us. Had we marriage or other occasions for joy 
among us, we feel that you would then equally sympathize 



with us and help us. Therefore, individually and as a com- 
munity, we wish to express our appreciation and our gratitude. 
" It only remains to ask you, Dr. MacKay, to accept from 
the foreign community of North Formosa, and the captains, 
officers, and engineers of the visiting steamers, a feeble token 
of our esteem. If our offering should serve to bring nearer 
to yoiu- vision the ' glory which the heavens nightly declare,' 
and give you dehght and relaxation in the bringing, we shall 
all rejoice. 

** L. TE Breton, 
B. P. White, 
Charles Pve, 
Alfred G. Robson, 
J. R. Wilson, 
R. Mussen, 
Arnold C. Clarke, 
Harrison W. Lee, 
G. Ball, 


William Gauld, 

William Davis, 

Fred B. Marshall, 

F. M. Tait, 

R. H. Obiy, 

M. Jenssen, 

B. C. Matheson, 

F. Fenwick, 

E. A. Donaldson, 

Paul Schabeft, 

J. Merlees, 

F. C. Angear. 

James Cromarty, 
Isaac Roberts, 
J. D. Edwards, 
V. Larsen, 
J. Remusat, 
H. B. Morse, 
W. S. Ayrton, 
O. E. Bailey, 
G. M. Hinrichs, 
G. Schneider, 
G. Nepean, 
W. Cloney, 
A. F. Gardiner, 
A. Butler, 
P. W. Petersen, 
A, Schwarzer, 
J. S. Roach, 
William Roberts, 
F. F. Andrew, 

E. Hansen, 

F. Ashton, 



North and South — Mutual respect — Founding of their mission — Staff of 
workers — Visit of Mr. Campbell — Tour with Mr. Ritchie — Stations 
and statistics — Medical work — Education — A noble history 

ALTHOUGH the island of Formosa is not more than two 
- hundred and fifty miles in length, those Hving in the 
south are separated from us in the north as far as if the length 
of a continent lay between us. There is no direct connection 
by sea, and the overland route is tedious, difficult, and dan- 
gerous. The mission in South Formosa, carried on by the 
Presbyterian Church of England, although reaching northward 
to a point not far from the most southerly station supplied by 
our mission in North Formosa, is still so far away that for all 
practical purposes we are in different cduntries. Once in 
years missionaries from Tamsui and from Tai-wan-fu may 
meet, but it is only as 

" Ships that pass in the night and speak each other in passing." 

No two missions could possibly be more friendly; and al- 
though we have not touched each other except remotely, and 
although our methods of work differ very materially, we are 
" one in hope and doctrine, one in charity." They have a 
larger foreign staff, while we throw greater emphasis on a na- 
tive ministry ; but God has no fixed method by which his ser- 
vants must work, and each according to his ability and his 



circumstances must serve our common Master, The mission, 
aries in South Formosa are indeed brethren beloved. When I 
landed in their midst, a stranger and a novice, those then in the 
field gave me the heartiest welcome, initiating me into the 
work, and then accompanying me on an exploring expedition 
through my own chosen field. The story of their work has 
been told by one of their number, the R,ev. William Campbell, 
F.R.G.S., in his " Missionary Success in Formosa." I have by 
me only the two most recent reports submitted to the Synod 
of the Presbyterian Church of England, upon which I depend 
for extracts and statistics. 

The work in South Formosa was begun in 1865 by J. L. 
Maxwell, M.D., a devoted Christian physician. Writing of 
his service in 1870, the convener of the Foreign Mission Com- 
mittee imder whom he labored said : " It is in some respects 
almost romantic in its incidents, and very glorying to God in 
the large results of the work as compared with the smallness of 
the human agency ; for it is principally through one mission- 
ary, a noble Christian physician, who went out for us in 1865, 
Dr. Maxwell, that the work has been carried on." The 
founder of the mission is indeed a noble Christian, and since 
his retiral from the field he has continued in the service of 
foreign missions, being editor of " Medical Missions," published 
in London, England. 

When I arrived in 1871, Revs. Hugh Ritchie, Wilham 
Campbell, and Dr. Dickson were on the field. The present 
staff, according to the report for 1894, includes Rev. William 
Campbell (187 1), Rev. T. Barclay, M.A. (1874), Rev. Dun- 
can Ferguson, M.A. (1889), Peter Anderson, L.R.C.S. and 
P.Ed. (1878), W. Murray Cairns, M.B., CM. (1893), Mr. 
George Ede (1883), Miss Annie Butler (1885), Miss Joan 
Stuart (1885), Miss Barnett (1888). The report records "the 
unexpected removal by death of the Rev. William Thow, 
which has left a deep wound in the hearts of all the brethren 


and of the entire native church. Mr. Thow was a noble mis- 
sionary, and had got into remarkable touch with the Chinese 
Christians, from many of whom the most tender, sympathetic 
communications have been received." It was my privilege to 
know Mr. Thow, having met with him on the field, and he de- 
served the words of appreciation that have been spoken by his 
fellow-workers and his church. Mr. Ritchie and Dr. Gavin 
Russel have also been called to rest from their labors in 

The first missionary to visit me at Tamsui was the Rev. 
William Campbell, who traveled inland with me, preaching the 
gospel in the towns and villages. Years afterward he visited 
me a second time, and made a trip through the Kap-tsu-lan 
plain. He was a delightful companion. One evening at 
Kelung we agreed to spend ten days without speaking English, 
beginning on the following morning. We were to set out on a 
tour in the morning, and before daybreak the call to rise was 
heard : " Liong tsong khi lai." We were soon making our 
way along winding paths, talking all the time, but never using 
an English word. At last my friend turned to me and said, 
" MacKay, this jabbering in Chinese is ridiculous, and two 
Scotchmen should have more sense ; let us return to our mother 

In 1875 the Rev. Hugh Ritchie came up to Tamsui, and, 
accompanied by nine of our preachers, I set out with him on 
a trip that lasted seventy days. We inspected all our work in 
the north, visiting all our stations, and then journeyed south- 
ward, over mountains, across sands, through forest jungle and 
rocky gorge, until we reached the most northerly stations in 
the South Formosa mission. We went from station to station, 
inspecting their entire work. Then we met with the mission- 
aries and native workers in a conference of preachers and 
office-bearers at Tai-wan-fu, where for several days we took 
sweet counsel together, myself and the preachers from the 


north being privileged to take part in the discussions along 
with the southern brethren. I have visited South Formosa 
several times since then, and have lost none of my affection 
for the mission whose missionaries have labored so devotedly 
and whose converts impress a stranger as being earnest and 

At the close of 1894 the South Formosa mission reported 
twenty organized congregations, eighteen not yet organized, 
with twelve hundred and forty-six members on the communion- 
roll. The work was greatly interfered with by the sickness of 
several of the most efficient and experienced missionaries. 
Malarial fever is their foe, as it is ours in the north. Their 
stations are among Chinese, Pe-po-hoan, and Sek-hoan. In 
the Tai-wan district there is one station among the Chinese 
and four among the Pe-po-hoan. In the Tong-soa district 
are eleven among Chinese and one among Hak-ka Chinese. 
In the Ka-gi district are five among Chinese and four arnong 
Pe-po-hoan. In the Chiang-hoa district is one station among 
Chinese and five among Sek-hoan. On the east coast are 
three stations among Pe-po-hoan. There are twenty-six na- 
tive preachers, none of whom have yet been ordained, and 
eight students studying with a view to the ministry. Cheering 
items of news are reported from several churches, and the re- 
port says that, "at a general conference of preachers and 
office-bearers to be held in February, it seemed all but certain 
some decisions would be reached by the native brethren which 
would lead to their assuming a greater amount of responsibil- 
ity in the management of the church's affairs. The brethren 
are of opinion that the day is not very distant when they will 
be able to go forward to the ordination of one or two native 
pastors, which would indeed be a red-letter day in the For- 
mosa mission." 

Of the influence of medical work in their mission the Rev. 
WiUiam Campbell writes: "Work in our hospital reaches twp 


classes, the out-patients and those, every Tuesday and Friday, 
who have medicines dispensed to them. Thus every year a 
wide door ard effectual is opened for seeking to influence 
thousands of persons — coming, moreover, not from one town 
or village, but from a region covering many hundreds of 
square miles." A deeply interesting work for the blind was 
initiated by Mr. Campbell, and is contributing its quota to the 
success of the mission, being conducted with every token of 

The missionaries — some of them, at least — are convinced of 
the importance of throwing more responsibility on the native 
preachers and teachers, and hence of developing native talent 
by thorough education. Mr. Campbell writes : " It is a soiu-ce 
of much regret to us that the work in our college does not de- 
velop as we wish to see, or as ,the necessities of our field now 
urgently require. With very little effort about twenty students 
could be accommodated in the present college buildings ; and, 
taking the UBual percentage of loss into account, this number 
ought to be always at work if we are to make anything like 
healthful and necessary progress. Diuing 1892 we had the 
names of only eight regular students on our roll ; one a native 
of Chin-chew, two Hak-ka Chinese, and five children of Pe- 
po-hoan parents. There is obviously much need for full and 
sympathetic inquiry into the causes which for years past have 
been preventing a larger number of Chinese youths from ac- 
cepting oiu- offers to bring them within reach of college instruc- 
tion. Chiefly on account of having no Christian teachers, our 
congregational schools have been few indeed, and it is well 
known to friends at home that, for want of proper accommoda- 
dation, Mr. Ede's middle school had to be given up in the 
autumn of 1890. The few years' work of this latter institution 
convinced us all of its exceeding importance and value at the 
present stage of our mission. It was only necessary that it 
should have gone on a number of years longer in order to 


furnish young men for the college, for managing local schools, 
the hospital, and almost any other department of Christian 

The mission in the south was founded under trying condi- 
tions, but it has done a great work and has a noble history. 
There are worthy names on its roll of service. It has been a 
light in a dark place, a witness for God and truth, a bringer 
of good tidings to thousands. The methods adopted differ 
from ours, but the spirit is the spirit of the gospel of Jesus, and 
I rejoice with the brethren there in every success achieved, and 
hail with supreme delight any " forward movement " for the 
ingathering of souls and the upbuilding of the City of God in 
South Formosa. 



Survey — Foreign medical assistants — Rev. J. B. Fraser — Rev. K. F. Jnnor 
— Rev. John Jamieson — Rev. Wm. Gauld — Mr. Gauld and the native 
preachers — Statistics for 1894 — Mr. Gauld's report — Chapels — Native 
preachers — Self-support — The changed relations — " Eben-ezer " 

STANDING on the prominence of the present, one is dis- 
posed to look backward over the past and forward into 
the future. Twenty-four years ago, in the autumn of 1871, I 
first left my native land, young and inexperienced, the first 
foreign missionary sent out by my church. 1 went out not 
knowing whither, for my field of labor had not been chosen. 
But the God who " shapes our ends " led the way, and early 
in 1872, lifting my eyes to the green-clad mountains that stand 
round about Tamsui, clearer than human voice ever spoke to 
the outward ear, I heard the voice of God whisper to my Hst- 
ening spirit, "This is the land." In the autumn of 1 881, at 
the close of my first furlough, I set out a second time, not 
alone now, and not unknowing, for Formosa, the land of my 
labors, the native home of my wife, had been written upon my 
heart. And now for the third time, in the autumn of 1895, at 
the close of my second furlough, I am setting out again, this 
time with my wife and our three children, and Koa Kau, my 
Chinese student-companion. Farewells have all been said, and 
trusting the guidance of Him who knows the way and never 
leads astray, we go out in the glad confidence that in Formosa 



we have work to be done and a witness to be borne for Jesus 
our Saviour and King. 

There are many things about missionary experiences in 
North Formosa that are still untold. Looking back over the 
years, I see one helper after another entering int5 our life and 
taking part with us in our work. Mention has already been 
made of Dr. Ringer, the resident physician to the foreign com- 
munity, -who from the beginning until 1880 gave such valuable 
service in connection with the hospital and medical work, tak- 
ing upon himself the chief responsibility of that department. 
Dr. Johansen followed him, and for six years, until 1886, dur- 
ing which there were trying and troublous times, he laid the 
mission under obligation. Then came Dr. Rennie, and from 
1886 till 1892 he was chie.f officer of the hospital and medical 
work. Since then Dr. F. C. Ange^r has had charge and over- 
sight of this important department, and, like his predecessors, 
has given generously of his time and rendered most efficient 
service to the mission. 

In 1875 we were joined by the Rev. J. B. Fraser, M.D., 
and wife. Dr. Fraser, son of the late Rev. W. Fraser, D.D., 
for many years one of the clerks of the General Assembly of 
the Presbyterian Church in Canada, had two years' experience 
in medical practice, and, after graduating in theology, was 
ordained and designated by the Presbytery of Toronto in 
September, 1874, and sent out by the Foreign Mission Com- 
mittee to have charge more especially of the medical work. 
After a faithful service of nearly three years his home was 
broken up by the death of his wife, in October, 1877, and he 
was compelled to return to Canada with his children. He is 
now minister in Leith, Ontario, and is'an active and useful 
member of the Foreign Mission Committee. 

The year following, in the summer of 1878, the Rev. Ken- 
neth F. Junor arrived at Tamsui, having been commissioned 
by the Canadian church, and he continued in the service until 


1882. For a considerable part of the time, during my first 
furlough in 1880-81, he was the only foreign missionary in 
the field, and, with the native preachers, had oversight of the 
entire mission, which at that date had twenty chapels, each 
with a native preacher, and in all over three hundred members 
in full communion with the chturch. Mr. Junor's health broke 
down, and in November, 1882, he returned to Canada. He 
is now engaged in important city mission work in New York. 

In 1883 the Rev. John Jamieson and his wife arrived and 
entered upon their work, which was carried on against great 
odds until 1891, when Mr. Jamieson, after repeated and pro- 
longed periods of physical weakness, was called away by death, 
and his wife returned to Canada. 

In May, 1892, the Rev. WiUiam Gauld, having completed 
his college training, was appointed to Formosa by the Foreign 
Mission Committee, and in September of the same year he 
and Mrs. Gauld arrived in Tamsui. They were most heartily 
welcomed by the workers in the field, and with commendable 
ability and zeal began the study of the language, people, and 
methods of work. During my present visit to Canada Mr. 
Gauld has been the only foreign missionary in the mission, 
and through all the times of disturbance and unrest consequent 
upon the recent war and the long-continued resistance of the 
islanders to Japanese rule, the affairs of the mission have been 
managed with great discretion and success. The Foreign 
Mission Committee was enabled to report that " Mr. Gauld 
has entered upon the work in Formosa with such sympathy 
and judgment as encourages us to expect gratifying results. 
The committee was somewhat alarmed lest Dr. MacKay's 
retvurn home so soon after Mr. Gauld's arrival would lay upon 
him a responsibihty he might not be able to bear. These 
fears have been disappointed." 

A Hoa, Sun-a, and Thien Leng were associated with Mr. 
Gauld in conducting the mission, and their experience and 


judgment were to be depended upon. Of A Hoa Mr. Gauld 
wrdte at the close of 1893 : "Though constantly in consulta- 
tion, there has never been the slightest approach to friction 
between us, and the longer and better I know him the more I 
can love him, trust in his honesty, and respect his judgment. 
In cases of difficulty that have arisen he has invariably been 
deputed to visit the locality in which the disturbance took 
place. On his return his smiling face, no less than his words, 
invariably announced his success in restoring harmony. Yet 
this man receives only $20 (silver) or $1 1.43 (gold) per month 
from the mission for his services." 

In the report submitted to the General Assembly of 1895 the 
statistics of the mission showed: 2 foreign ordained mission- 
aries; 2 native ordained missionaries; 60 unordained native 
preachers; 24 native Bible-women; 1738 native communi- 
cants (male 1027, female 711) in good and regular standing 
in the chiurch; 2633 baptized members; 60 dispensaries at 
chapels; 10,736 treatments at the hospital; $2375.74 contrib- 
uted by natives for mission purposes; $264.10 contributed by 
natives for the hospital ; $269 contributed by foreign commu- 
nity for the hospital. 

In his report for the same year Mr. Gauld says : " Oxford 
College is still closed, pending Dr. MacKay's return. It has 
been one of the most useful institutions in connection with the 
mission, and we doubt not will continue to exercise its influ- 
ence for good in days to come. 

" During 1894 the Girls' School was kept open for a short 
time. After the commencement of the war it was deemed 
unwise to keep the girls so far away from their parents, and 
accordingly they were sent home. 

" The longer our experience the more do we value the native 
ministry as an important factor of the work. The majority of 
our native agents are doing excellent work, and the two native 
ordained pastors are superior men. When I last visited Pastor 


Tan He's congregation at Sin-tiam — a country town, or rather 
village — worship was held on Saturday evening, when about 
seventy were present. On the Lord's day there were present 
in the morning about one hundred and seventy, im the after- 
noon about one hundred and twenty, and in the evening about 
seventy. Of course many of the country-people returned to 
their homes, not remaining for the evening service. What a 
delight to address such attentive audiences! At week-night 
services, besides singing and prayer, an attempt is made to 
teach the people to read. In this young church there is cer- 
tainly a variety of gifts. To know Tan He is to love him. 
He is not so good a superintendent as Pastor Giam Chheng 
Hoa, but in his own sphere is a most useful man, cheerful, 
orderly, cleanly, and true, a faithful pastor, a good preacher, 
a sympathizing friend. He has now for many years been ex- 
ercising a Christian influence upon his countrymen, and still 
continues, by God's grace, the same blessed work. Pastor 
Giam Chheng Hoa is a remarkable man. Well taught in the 
doctrines of the gospel, he preaches them with faithfulness and 
power. By nature he has very high executive ability, which 
has been improved by twenty years of experience. He knows 
his own people, from the governor of the island to the ragged 
opium-smoking beggar, and has influence with them all. His 
services in the mission are invaluable, and we trust we shall be 
permitted for many years to enjoy the benefits of his influence 
and counsel. Other preachers and Bible-women are doing 
their work in their own way, and to good purpose. We long 
for the time when we shall have a native church supporting a 
native ministry without foreign aid, and also helping the needy 
in other parts of this poor sin-cursed world. It is a cause for 
thankfulness that, while the death-rate here was very high 
during the past year, not one of our mission staff, foreign or 
native, was called away from the work in which all are so 
much needed. 



" We long for a rapid increase of true believers, and we de- 
sire, even more earnestly, that those received into the church 
may be true to Christ, steadfast in the faith, showing clearly 
by their lives that they daily live with him." 

In preceding chapters reference has been made to many 
points where mission work is being carried on and where 
chapels have been erected. The location of each chapel is 
indicated on one of the maps, which gives the names of the 
sixty points occupied by the mission. The complete list is as 
follows : 














































Sai-thair -toe. 











































































At each of these chapels a native preacher is stationed, and 
in many cases there is associated with the preacher a native 
trained Bible-woman. The students of Oxford College give 
valuable services, assisting the preachers at various stations, 
preaching the gospel, and teaching the people from house to 
house. Irregular and occasional services are held at many 



points where there is no chapel or organized congregation. In 
this way the mission is gradually extending, and its growth is 
substantial and healthy. 

Several of the preachers are engaged in the superintendence 
of the mission and in the educational work at Tamsui. The 
following native preachers, trained and equipped for their 
work, are in charge of chapels : 


Tan He. 


Tan Kui. 


Tsui Eng. 


Tan Leng. 


Eng Jong. 


Chheng He. 


Go Ek Ju. 


Ang An. 


Chhun Bok. 


Tan Theng. 


Thong Su. 


Tiu Thiam. 


Chhoa Seng. 


Jim Sui. 


Bio Sien. 


Lim Giet. 


A Hai. 


Eng Seng. 


Tsun Sim. 


Pat Po. 


Chhong Lim, 


Siau Tien. 


Jit Sin. 


Teng Chiu. 


Li Kui. 


Chin Giok. 


Beng Tsu. 


Lau Chheng. 


Ki Siong. 


Tek Beng. 


Tan Ho. 


Pa Kin. 


Tu lau. 


Tan Ban. 


Hok Eng. 


Li lau. 


Keh Tsu. 


In Lien. 


Tsan Un. 


Tan Eng. 


Hong Lien. 


Tan Sam. 


Eng Goan. 


Kai Loah. 


Li Sun. 


Tan Siah. 


Sam Ki. 


Eng Chhung, 


A Lok. 


Keng Tien. 


Tsui Seng. 


lap Tsun. 


A Seng. 


Kho Goan. 


Thien Sang. 


Gong A. 


Lim Ban. 


Lau Tsai. 


Tong San. 


Bun Seng. 

The all-important question of self-support is constantly kept 
before our minds, and the native Christians in North Formosa 
are taught to give of their means for the maintenance of ordi ■ 
nances and for the extension of the church. A self-supporting 
mission is our ideal. But what is meant by self-support ? What 
I understand by a self-supporting mission is one in which al) 
the work is carried on and all the agents supported by those in 
the mission itself. The church in North Formosa will be self 
supporting when its college, school, hospital, chapels, and all 


Other departments, with all laborers, whether native or foreign, 
will be supported by the members and adherents of the native 
church. We are as yet a long way from that position, but we 
are on the way, and are moving in that direction. Four of 
our congregations are now entirely self-supporting ; and last 
year the contributions from the natives themselves amounted to 
$2639.84. There is a great work to be done, not in Formosa 
alone, or China, but throughout the entire foreign mission 
field, before help from the churches in Europe and America 
can be dispensed with. The statistics of native contributions 
call for patience on the part of ministers and churches in the 
home field. It is too much to expect the heathen, either at 
home or abroad, to pay for his own conversion. Converts 
must i>e taught self-reliance and self-denial, but it sometimes 
happens in heathen countries that to accept Christianity is to 
invite oppression, boycotting, and robbery. In many native 
congregations there is not one member who, even according to 
native standards, has " a competent portion of the good things 
of this life." But out of their poverty I have seen them give 
willingly for the support of gospel ordinances. 

Another problem facing the mission in North Formosa is 
the coming of the Japanese. We have no fear. The King 
of kings is greater than emperor or mikado. He will rule and 
. overrule all things. We do not speculate. We do not prear- 
range. The Japanese question must be faced, as a^l others 
have been faced, with plans flexible enough to suit the changed 
circumstances, and faith strong enough to hear the voice of 
God across the storm. There will be difficulties, dangers, and 
trials before things are adjusted, but Formosa is given to Jesus, 
and the purposes of God shall be fulfilled. 

Why should we fear? Surely we can say, " Hitherto hath 
the Lord helped us." I look back to the first days, and recall 
the early persecutions and perils, of which the reader will never 
know. ,1 remember the proclamations issued and posted up 


on trees and temples, charging me with unimaginable crimes, 
and forbidding the people to hold converse with me. In 1879 
I was burned in effigy at an idolatrous feast. Again and 
again have I been threatened, insulted, and mobbed. But 
" the things which happened unto me have fallen out rather 
unto the furtherance of the gospel," and now the church of 
Jesus Christ is a real factor and a positive power in the moral 
and spiritual life of North Formosa. 

After what has been told, will it be said that missions are a 
failure? With more than two thousand confessed followers 
of Jesus Christ now in the churches of North Formosa, who 
were born, most of them, in the darkness of heathenism, and 
with the social and moral life of the people impregnated with 
Christian ideas, am I to be told by some unread and untrav- 
eled critic that mission money is wasted, that missionary suc- 
cess is mere sentiment, and that converts do not stand ? I 
profess to know something about foreign mission work, having 
studied it at first-hand on the ground, and having examined it 
at the distance of half the globe's circumference. I profess to 
know something of the character of the Chinese, heathen and 
Christian, and something of men in other lands than China. 
And I am prepared to affirm that for integrity and endurance, 
for unswerving loyalty to Christ, and untiring fidelity in his 
service, there are to-day in the mission churches of North 
Formosa hundreds who would do credit to any community or 
to any congregation in Christendom. I have seen them under 
fire, and know what they can face. I have looked when the 
fight was over, and know that it was good. I have watched 
them as they lay down to die, and calmly, triumphantly, as 
any soldier-saint or martyr-hero, they "burned upward each 
to his point of bliss." Tell me not that they will fall away. 
Four hundred of them have been counted worthy and have 
entered into His presence, the first-fruits of the harvests now 
ripening in the white fields of North Formosa. 


But the half has not been told. These chapters are but a 
fragment. Not to-day or to-morrow can the story be >Yfitten. 
The real story is not finished ; it has only begun. There are 
chapters to be added from the yet unread pages of the book 
of God. Formosa is rooted in God's purpose as surely as 
Orion or the Pleiades. That purpose " will ripen fast, unfold- 
ing every hour." To help on its fulfilment this snatch from 
the history of the past is broken off and- sent out to the 
churches at home, while we go out again to far Formosa, 
stretching forward to the things which are before. We are 
not afraid. Our confidence is in the eternal God. Oh, may 
Jesus, our exalted Redeemer-King, keep us all, and all his 
church, here and yonder, true and faithful till he come. May 
we hve in the light of certain victory. The kingdom of the 
world shall yet become the kingdom of our Lord and of his 
Christ. The isles shall wait for his law. 


Aberdeen (Scotland), Free Church 
College at, 21. 

Aboriginal tradition, 94. 

Aborigines, Chinese contempt for, 
102 ; conquered at Formosa, 205 ; 
and the dominant race, 248 ; sav- 
age, 251. 

Address to author from foreign com- 
munity at Tamsui, 321. 

Agincourt Island, 184. 

Agricultural course, Tamsui mis- 
sion, the, 209. 

Among the Chinese, lOi. 

Ancestors, worship of, 131, 259. 

Angear, Dr. F. C, 331. I 

Animal life of Formosa, 76. 

Asiatic cholera, 43 ; native treat- 
ment of, 310. I 

Author, the, 3; his parentage, 14; | 
home life at Zorra, Canada, 15; 
Christian upbringing, 16 ; early ■ 
drawn to mission work, 16 ; pre- | 
paratory studies at Toronto, 18; > 
graduation, and first missionary j 
duties, 19 ; theological studies at j 
Edinburgh, 20 ; great Scottish ■ 
preachers, 21 ; called to work in ! 
foreign fields, 23 ; tour among the 
Canadian churches, 24; ordina- 
tion, 26 ; departure for " Far For- 
mosa," 27; crossing the Pacific, 
29 ; at Yokohama, 30 ; masters 
eight tones of Formosan dialect, 
31 ; takes passage for Tamsui, 32 ; 
arrival at scene of labors, 23 '< 
spying out the land, 34; experi- 
ence of Formosan inns, 35 ; visits 

English Presbyterian Mission at 
Toa-sia, 36; moves into his home 
at Tamsui, 38; first attack of 
fever, 44; difficulties in acquir- 
ing the language, 136; acquires 
facility in spoken dialect from 
herdboys, 137; tour with A Hoa, 
145 ; records of missionary tours, 
174; experiences during the 
French blockade, 189; suffers 
from acute meningitis, 195 ; mis- 
sionary labors among the Pe-po- 
hoan, 217; makes a trip down 
the east coast, 226 ; threatened 
by savages, 240 ; visits the Lam- 
si-hoan, 241 ; departure on a visit 
to Canada (1893), 170, 321; ad- 
dress and presentation of foreign 
community to, 321; retrospect 
and prospect of author's work, 
330 ; persecutions and perils 
things of the past, 337. 

Baber, E. C, British consul at Tam- 
sui, tour with, 262. 

" Bamboo," the, punishment of, 107. 

Banditti, subduing, 160. 

Bang-kah, 45; population of, 113; 
how taken, 164; hatred to for- 
eigners at, 164; hostilities to mis- 
sionaries at, 165; great change of 
demeanor toward, 170; author 
honored at, 171. 

Baptism of converts, I48. 

"Barbarian" as an epithet ad- 
dressed to Europeans, 136, 146, 
238, 30i> 321. 




Baths, public, among the Lam-si- 
hoan, 246. 

Bax, Captain, trip into savage terri- 
tory with, 252. 

Beginnings of mission work, 135. 

Betel-nut eating, filthy habit of, 246. 

Bible-women, native, 141, 301, 335. 

Birds, veneration for their chirps, 


Birds of Formosa, 79. 

Blind, the, mission work amonr, 

Bombardment of Tamsui, perilous 
position during, 194. 

Botany of Formosa, 55. 

Brahmanism and Buddhism, studies 
in, at Exiinburgh, 20. 

" Bread cast upon the waters," 158. 

Bryce, Rev. Dr. George, of Winni- 
peg, 26. 

Buddhistic idolatry, 208; cure for 
malaria, 312. 

Burning the idols, 231. 

Burns, William C, 16. 

" Burns's Church" at Sin-sia, 223, 

Calvinism, stem old, 15. 
Campbell, Rev. William, of South 

Formosa, 325-328. 
Canada, financial aid given by, for 

mission work in Formosa, 292, 

Canada Presbyterian Church, 3, 6, 

a3, 28, 304. 
Candlish, Dr. Robert, ai. 
Catarrh, native specific for, 311. 
Cheng-kui.«ia, open-air service at, 


Chief's village, visit to, 263. 

Chinese, the, physical features of, 
97; among the people, loi ; 
government of, 104; criminal 
justice among, 109; corruption 
and inhumanity of, 110-I12; in- 
dustrial and social life of, 113; 
farming, 115; education, 116; 
theaters and «ausements» 118; 
marriage cnstems, 120; religious 
life of, 12S; idolatry amoBg, 128; 
degrading feasts of, 13 1 i vorahip 

of ancestors, 134 ; feeble sense of 
the sublime, 176; baneful influ- 
ence of Chinese traders, 258; 
hated by the aborigines as intru- 
ders, 268 ; attacked by native 
tribes, 270; the prey of the head- 
hunters, 272 ; social life of, at 
Tamsui, 298; doctor's charges, 


Christmas with the savages, a, 264. 

Churches, establishing of, 153; de- 
stroyed during hostilities, 191. 

Coal-boat, adrift on a, 187. 

Coal-mines at Poeh-tau, 50. 

Coming of the French, the, 189. 

Communion services, 148, 161, 227. 

Confucianism, 125, 177, 208. 

Confucianist, an old, 177. 

Converts, baptism of, 148; eager- 
ness of, 162. 

Cordial relations between the laity 
and the mission, 321. 

Craig Island, 1 84. 

Curriculum of study at Oxford Col- 
lege, Tamsui, 293; at Girls' 
School, 306. . 

Dawson, Sir J. William, of Mon- 
treal, 24. 

Dead, mode of burying, among the 
savages, 262. 

Dentistry and the medical missions, 

Departed spirits, savage notion of 

place of, 258. 
Dialects, multiplicity of, 265. 
Divining-bloeks, praying with, 128. 
Doctors, native, and their diagnosis 

of diseases, 309. 
Dodd, Mr. John, of Tamsoi, 34, 

Donkey experiences, 175. 
Dress of savages, 345, 256. 
Duff, Rev. Dr. Alexander, ao. 

Earthquakes, prevalent, 53 ; at Sin- 
kang, 339. 

East coast, trip down the, aao. 

Edinburgh, post-graduate (theologi- 
cal) course at, ao ; great preachers 
of, 2^ ; mia^ioQ work at. aa. 



Educated ministry, need of, 287. 

English Presbyterian Mission at 
Tai-wan-fu, 32, 324; among the 
Chinese, Pe-po-hoan, and Sek- 
hoan, 327. 

Establishing churches, 153. 

Ethnology of Formosa, 92. 

Farmer's lot, 213, 243. 

Farming in Formosa, 209. 

Feasts, savage, religious significance 
of, 258. 

Fibrous plants, 64. 

Fishes of Formosa, 83. 

Flowers of Formosa, 73. 

" Foreign devil " as an epithet, 136, 
146, 150. 

Foreign Mission Committee of Pres- 
byterian Church in Canada, 30. 

Foreigners and the mission, 225, 

Forest land, mode of clearing, 264. 

Formosa, its geography and history, 
41 ; the climate and its enervating 
influences, 42-44 ; destructive 
Chinese typhoons, 45 ; the Dutch 
and the Japanese in, 46 ; aborigi- 
nal (Malayan) name of island, 47 ; 
geology of, 48 ; mineral resources 
of, 50-52; earthquakes in, 53; 
atmospheric, aqueous, and vol- 
canic agencies at work in, 54; 
plant life of, 55-60; fruits and 
fruit-trees of, 60-63; grasses of, 
66; vegetables, 68-71; tobacco, 
tea, and. other plants, 71-73; 
flowers of, 73-75 ; animal life, 76- 
78; birds, 79, 80; reptiles, 80- 
82 ; fishes, 83 ; insects, 84-89 ; 
moUnsca, 89-91 ; races of, 92-98 ; 
the Chinese in, 101-103 ; form of 
government, 104; criminal jus- 
tice, 109 ; outrages upon native 
Christians, iio-iia; industrial 
and social life, 113; farming in, 
115; education in, 116, 117; the 
theater, sports, and amusemeqts, 
1 1 81, 119; betrothal and marriage, 
120-124; Chinese religious life, 
125 ; idolatry, 128 ; ancestral wor- 
*1^ i^3i hftatbenism in, 164; 

modes of travel, 172 ; sedan-chairs 
and the rickshaw, 174; touring in 
the north, 175; the gospel mes- 
sage and its results, 1 79-181; 
the waiting isles, 182 ; the coming 
of the French to, 189; attacks on 
mission churches and outrages 
upon native converts, 191-194; 
looting of mission buildings, and 
indemnity therefor, 200 ; rebuild- 
ing of the chapels, 202 ; essentially 
an agricultural country, 209 ; mis- 
sions (English Presbyterian) in 
South Formosa, 324; need of 
self-supportiog missions in, 336. 

Forms of punishment, 107. 

French, coming of the, 189 ; leaving 
of, 199. 

French invasion in 1884, 158. 

Eraser, Rev. J. B., M.D., 331. 

Frater, Alexander, British consul at 
Tamsui, 38, 197. 

Fruits and fruit-trees, 60. 

Gauld, Rev. William, 332. 

Geh-bai, flourishing Christian con- 
gregation at, 157. 

Geography of Formosa, 41. 

Geology of Formosa, 48. 

" Gibraltar of heathenism," Bang- 
kah, 164. 

Girls' School at Tamsui, 224, 282, 

292, 2,iZ, Z33- 
" Glengarry Chapel," Tang-mng- 

thau, 236. 
Gods, Chinese, 126. 
Go Ek Ju, the painter, conversion 

of, 140. 
Go-ko-khi, erection of first chapel 

at, 121, 148; work prospering in, 

Gold on the Kelung River, 52. 
Government and justice, 104. 
Gunn, Mr. William, of San Fr»a- 

cisco, 28. 
Guthrie, Rev. Dr. Thomas, ai. 

Hak-kas, among the, 103, t57« 
Harvesting operations, 212. 
Hatred of foreigner* at Baaf^kah, 



Head-hunters, with the, 267; mur- 
derous equipment of, 270; savage 
propensities of, 271 ; hideous rev- 
els of, 273 ; reprisals of Chinese, 
275 ; menace of, to Europeans, 


Headquarters at Tamsui, 135. 

Heathenism of Formosa, 125. 

Hill Dyaks of Borneo, Formosan 
kindred, 267. 

Hindustani, author learns it at Edin- 
burgh, 20. 

History of Formosa, 46. 

Hoa, Giam Chheng (A), 139, 142, 

219. 332- 
Hodge, Dr. Charles, 18, 19. 

Hok-los, the, loi. 

Hong Kong, 28, 195. 

How Bang-kah was taken, 164. 

Idolatry, Chinese, stock in trade, 

Idol-making industry, 128. 

Idol-temple offered for chapel ser- 
vices, 231 ; idol-burning, 231. 

Idol- worship, natives weary of, 231. 

Importance of medical missions, 

Industrial and social life, 113. 

Inglis, Rev. Walter, 25. 

Insect life in Formosa, 84. 

Intertribal wars, 258. 

Irrigating rice-fields, 210. 

Jabbering in Chinese, Scotch, 326. 
Jamieson, Rev. John, 332. 
Japanese, coming of, 337. 
Junor, Rev. Kenneth F., 331. 

Ka-le-oan, cook-preacher at, 230. 
Kap-tsu-lan plain, 215 ; many chap- 
els on, 220, 234, 239. 
Kau-kau-a, 221. 
Kelung, 45, 47; church at, 157, 

Ki-lai plain, the, 241. 
King, Rev. Principal J. M., of 

Winnipeg, 26. 
Knox College, Toronto, 18, 160. 
Ko Chin, the convert, 158, 221. 
Laing, Rev. Dr., of Dundas, 27. 

Lam-a-lin, " open door " at, 227. 

Lam-hong-o, chapel at, 222. 

Lam-kham, night sojourn at, 179. 

Lam-si-hoan, life among, 226, 241 ; 
heathen darkness among, 247 ; 
future of, 248; deadly result of 
civilization among, 248. 

Language and dialect, 97, 98, 102. 

Lau-lau-a chapel, 228; native mar- 
riage at, 228. 

Licentiousness, corroding, 248. 

Life among the Lam-si-hoan, 226, 
241 ; future of, 248. 

Lights and shadows of missionary 
life, 237. 

Liquors, trade in poisonous, 248. 

Lord's work prospering, the, 150. 

McCosh, Dr. James, 18. 

Machar Memorial Church, 158. 

MacKay, George, 14. 

MacKay, Rev. G. L., D.D. (See 
under Author.) 

MacKay, Rev. R. P., 6. 

MacKay, Mrs. (of Detroit), church- 
building donation from, 223, 316. 

" MacKay Church " at Lam-hong-o, 

MacKay Hospital at Tamsui, 283, 

McKenzie, Rev. Donald, 15. 

MacLaren, Rev. Professor William, 
19, 22, 25, 28. 

MacVicar, Rev. Principal, of Mon- 
treal, 24. 

McTavish, Rev. W. S., 4. 

Malaria, 43 ; native remedy for, 276, 
312; need of cure for, 314; a foe 
to missions, 327. 

Malays, the, 207, 224, 242, 251. 

Maplewood (Ontario), school-teach- 
ing days at, 16. 

Marriage among savages, 257. 

Martyrs for the faith, 192. 

Maxwell, Dr. J. L., 324. 

Meaningless Chinese etiquette, 301. 

Medical work and the hospital, 308 ; 
influence of, on mission, 317. 

Mission, English Presbyterian, 
work of, 325. 

Mission work, beginnings of, ii\ For- 



mosa, 135 ; among Pe-po-hoans, 
215; location of missions in 
North Formosa, 335. 

Missionary, to be one the passion 
of the author's life, 16. 

Missionary experiences, 150. 

Mollusca, Formosan, 89. 

Money, thirst for, among the Chi- 
nese, 164. 

Moore, Rev. Dr., of Ottawa, 25. 

Morals and manners among the 
Lam-si-hoan, 247. 

Mountain forests, savage life in, 

Mountain savages, 251. 

Museum at Tamsui, 288. 

Musical instruments of the savages, 

Native Bible-women, 302. 

Native ministry, need of, 44, 285 ; 

cost of maintenance of, 286. 
Native preacher, the first, and his 

church, 142. 
Native workers for native women, 

Nature-worship among the savages, 

Newmarket (Ontario), missionary 

labors at, 19. 
Night in an ox-stable, a, 221. 
" No room here for barbarians," 

Non-fkilure of missions, 338. 

Official corruption, 105. 
Opium-smoking habit overcome, 

Oppression of Christians, no. 
Ordinances and sacraments, 235.. 
Oxford College, Tamsui, 194, 224, 

230, 282, 291, 304, 305, 320, :^:ii, 


Pak-tau, church at, 223; sulphur- 
springs at, 223 ; prosperous mis- 
sion at, 224. 

Patience needful in the work of con- 
version, 236. 

Pat-li-hun, chapel at, 161. 

Pe-po-hoan, village of, 36 ; mission 

work among the, 215; encourag- 
ing nature of, 215, 219; English 
Presbyterian work among the, 


Pe-po-hoans, the, 37, 205; con- 
quered aborigines, 205 ; their 
home in the Kap-tsu-lan plain 
(North Formosa), 205 ; social 
characteristics, 206 ; their cruelty, 
207 ; nature-worshipers, 207 ; Chi- 
nese idolatry forced upon them by 
their conquerors, 208 ; murderous 
propensities of, 216, 276. 

" Perils of waters," in, 173. 

Persecutions suffered by native con- 
verts, 192. 

Phoa-po-o, gospel preached at, 236. 

Phosphorescent glory of Formosan 
wat^s, 229. 

Pinnacle Island, 184. 

Plant life in Formosa, 55. 

Po-sia plsin, 37. 

Pottery, manufacture of, by the 
Lam-si-hoan, 244. 

"Power of God unto salvation" 
manifested, 219. 

Preachers, native, 336. 

Presbyterian Church in Canada, 
Tamsui mission of, loi, 282. 

Presbyterian (English) missions in 
South Formosa, 324. 

Presbyterianism in Canada, consoli- 
dation of, 24. 

Princeton Theological Seminary, 
author a graduate of, 19. 

Railway operations in Formosa, 174. 

Rattan industry, 270. 

Refused accommodation, 238. 

Religious life among Chinese in 
Formosa, 125. 

Reptiles of Formosa, 81. 

Retrospect and prospect, 330. 

Rice, the staple food, 246. 

Rice-farming, 209. 

Rickshaw, locomotion by, 174. 

Ringer, Dr., of Tamsui, 319, 33.1. 

Ritchie, Rev. Hugh, of South For- 
mosa, 326. 

Ross, Rev. John, of Brucefield, 
Canada, 292. 



Sa-kak-eng, 159. 

Savage life and customs, 251. 

Scott, Mr., British consul at Tam- 
sui, 168. 

Sedan-chair, the, as " a mode of 
motion," 174. 

Sek-hoan mission, a, 238. 

Self-supporting missions in North 
Formosa, 337. 

Sent ci\'is of the King, the, 17. 

" Seventh Moon Feast," biarbari- 
ties of, abolislied, 131. 

Sin-kang, opposition at, 238 ; earth- 
quake at, 239. 

Sin-sia, church at, 223. 

Sin-tiam, 154; church at, 156. 

Social life, Chinese, 298. 

South Formosan mission, 324; no- 
ble history of, 329. 

Steep Island (Ku-soa), visit to, 182. 

Steere, Professor J. B., of Ann 
Arbor, 320. 

Sulphur-springs of Pak-tau, 223. 

Sutherlandshire (Scotland), au- 
thor's visit to the " land of his 
forefathers," 22. 

Sylvia, Mount, ascent of, 260; 
snow-capped heights of, 261, 313. 

Tai-wan-fu, capital of Formosa, 32, 


Ta-kow (Formosa), author's first 
sermon at, 31. 

Tamsui, blockade of, 195 ; sketch 
of, 281 ; mission buildings at, 282 ; 
population of, 283 ; a treaty port, 
283 ; MacKay Hospital at, 283. 

Tan He, Rev., 154; missionary trip 
with, 180, 226; builds church at 
Sin-sia, 223 ; at Sin-tiam, 334. 

Tattooing, 245, 257. 

Tauism, 125, 208, 224. 

Tauist priest, incantations of, 129, 
289, 312. 

Tea-culture, 114. 

Teeth-extracting, 168, 227, 315. 

Tek-chham, 113, 156. 

Thah-so, Widow, first female con- 
vert, 151; death of, 152. 

Tin-a from birth to marriage, 298. 

Toa-kho-ham, 159, 177. 

Toa-tiu-tia, population of, 113; 
church at, 161, 237. 

Tobacco-growing, 246. 

Tonquin, dispute with France, 189. 

Toronto (Canada), mission labors 
within Presbytery of, 19; or- 
dained at, 26. 

Toronto to Tamsui, 26. 

Torturing of converts, 192. 

Touring in the north, 172. 

Trader, Chinese, wily character of, 

Training a native ministry, 285. 

Travel, modes of, 172. 

Trees, plants, and flowers, 55. 

Tribal life, 255. 

Trip down the east coast, a, 226. 

Tsui-tng-kha, church at, 162, 163, 

Typhoons, destructive character of, 


Village life among the savages, 244, 


Waiting isles, the, 182. 

Warburg, Dr. (of Hamburg), bota- 
nist, visit of, 225. 

With the English Presbyterians in 
South Formosa, 324. 

Woman's Foreign Missionary So- 
ciety of Canada gives aid to Girls' 
School at Tamsui, 304. 

Woman's ministry, 297. 

Woman's position higher among Chi- 
nese than among pagan races, 1 19. 

Women, savage, fondness for orna- 
ments, 256 ; hard lot of, 265. 

Woodstock (Ontario) Grammar- 
school, 16. 

Woodstock " Sentinel Review," 

Work of the missions, prosperity of, 

Worship of ancestors, 131, 259; a 
stubborn obstacle to Christianity, 

Yojcohama, 29, 30. 

Zorra (Canada), early life in, 14; 
bids farewell to, 27. 

Uaiv . .-.f California 
2168 Shaccjck AYcnue 
Bcikeit-y, Giliforoia 9^04,