Wednesday, April 4, 2012


Not the Guam Militia which was formed during American times, but the Chamorro militia during Spanish times when all the Marianas were united.
The Spaniards, from the very beginning, utilized native Chamorros as part of the local military force.  Since, after the last Spanish-Chamorro battles were over, there were no wars fought on Guam till World War II, this military force also policed civilian activity.  They were organized in various ways over the years, but one that lasted pretty much for most of the 1800s was the Compañía de Dotación.

Compañía meant, as one could guess, a "company," in a military sense. Dotación has more than one meaning, but here it would mean, more or less,  a "patrol."  The Compañía was made up of Chamorros and would have dressed, more or less, like the Filipino soldiers above.  Sometimes Chamorro guards watched over the presidiarios, or exiled convicts, some Filipino, some Spaniards, when Guam was used as a penal colony by Spain.

The Compañía was not always the most loyal or dependable!  In 1884, some members of the Compañía ambushed and killed the Spanish Governor, Angel Pazos Hidalgo, right at the Palåsyo (Palace) in Hagåtña!  The Chamorro ring leaders were eventually tried and executed.

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