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Igorot Warrior Headhunters of the Philippine Cordilleras


Head Hunting in the Philippine Cordilleras

In the Igorot head hunting practice, most heads of their enemies were cut off with a battle-axe even before the wounded man was dead. If one warrior at the scene had never taken a head, he would be allowed to cut this one from the body and thus be entitled to the head taker's distinct tattoo(Chaklag).

Philippine Head hunting in the Cordilleras was for religious purposes and the acquisition of magical powers.Reasons include the desire for abundant harvests of cultivated products,the desire to be considered brave and manly.The desire for exaltation in the minds of descendants,to increase wealth, to secure abundance of wild game and fish, to secure general health and favor at the hands of the women, and to promote fertility in women.

However, the individual possession of a freshly severed head had to be "activated" through proper ceremony and ritual before it would "release" it's spiritual and magical powers.

Decapitated enemy of an Igorot head hunter

Decapitated enemy of an Igorot head hunter


The Igorots were a warlike people before the majority of them were Christianized

.A tribal war usually starts after a tribesman takes the head of a member from another tribe. Head taking was a rite of passage into manhood. It can be initiated also by a tribesman who intend to marry.

The offended tribe can demand retribution. If the one taking the head desires continued peace, Influential tribal leaders are sent to the other tribe to negotiate. Compensation is paid and the accord is sealed with an exchange of articles. If no agreement is reach then a war challenge is issued by the offended party.

Nearly all men from both sides will participate in the battle within a few days. They will appear at an opportune place shouting challenges at each other. Peace is still possible at this stage if one party decides to capitulate. A member is sent to the other camp with a peace offering usually a pig or a chicken. Friendship is restored if it is accepted. Else, if not all hell breaks loose.

Albert Ernest Jenks in his book "The Bontoc Igorot" published in 1905 has a vivid description of Igorots in the heat of battle

"Men go to war armed with a wooden shield, a steel battle ax and one to three steel or wooden spear. It is a man's agility and skill in keeping his shield between himself and his enemy that preserves his life. Their battles are full of quick and incessant springing motion. There are sudden rushes and retreats. Sneaking flank movement to cut the enemy off."

"The body is always in hand, always in motion.That it may respond instantly to every necessity. Spears are thrown with greatest accuracy and fatality up to thirty feet. And after the spears are discharged. The contest if continued is at arms length with the battle axe. In such warfare no attitude or position can be maintain except in the shortest possible time".

"Rocks are often thrown in battle and not infrequently a man's leg is broken or he is knocked senseless by the rock. Whereupon he loses his head to the enemy unless immediately assisted by his friends."

Such battles, lasting about 30- minutes to an hour often ceases after the taking of a single head by either side. But there were cases where fights last for half a day and a dozen or more heads taken.

The introduction of firearms greatly affected the Igorot way of warfare. There were more fatalities.

Modern warfare and weapons have proven to be more brutal and savage than the primitive arms of the "uncivilized natives"

Gansa gongs with human  jawbone handle

Gansa gongs with human jawbone handle


The Old Warrior

An old man of quiet dignity

watches the children play
their happy and innocent laughter
paid for with so much blood and sorrow

His brown skin weathered by the sun

Bears the proud tattoos of a warrior
and the scars borne of many battles
a reminder of comrades in arms
now long gone but not forgotten

Many moons ago

On this same mountain ridge
a young warrior watch as
a column move upon his land

White men from across the sea
in one hand the Holy Bible
on the other a sword

Conquistadors who's only purpose
to fight for gold and the king's glory
ravaging the land of our ancestors

"I raise my battle axe
as the steady beat of gongs
echo the fervor and anger within"

To arms!

"Drive them back from whence they came
let none despoil this sacred land
my forefathers fought and died for

Sun bleached bones on my native soil

A warning to future invaders
that this land shall always be free
for the next and new generations

The Banaue Rice Terraces

They carved  into the steep mountainsides a panoramic vista of stairways of rice fields reaching up to the skies.An astonishing feat of engineering,when you consider that they were constructed of mud and stone almost entirely by hand 2000 years ago.

They carved into the steep mountainsides a panoramic vista of stairways of rice fields reaching up to the skies.An astonishing feat of engineering,when you consider that they were constructed of mud and stone almost entirely by hand 2000 years ago.

The word "Igorot"

According to early 20th century historian Dr. Trinidad Pardo de Tavera, "golot" is an old bago tribe word meaning mountain ranges. and the prefix "I" means "dwellers in" When the Spaniards came, the name was anglicized into "Ygorrotte", to be spelled later as Igorot. It is a collective term use to describe six ethno-linguistic groups; Apayao(Isneg),Bontoc,Ibaloi,Ifugao, Kalinga and Kankana-ey

The Cordilleras is a chain of mountains, located in Norhtern Luzon, Philippines.The inhabitants of these mountain ranges are called "Igorots" which mean "people of the mountains".

They are the people who build one of the eight wonders of the world, the Banaue Rice Terraces.They were also headhunters.

The Philippines was ruled by foreign powers for almost four centuries.First by Spain then by the United States.

During the colonial times,The fiercely independent mountain tribes resisted these foreign invaders and were never fully conquered. As headhunters they were feared by their enemies for their ferocity in battle. Igorots however are peace-loving people who value their freedom and their way of life.

Igorot Warrior

Igorot Warrior

War Dance

War Dance

During the Spanish rule,the biggest battles recorded was in the 1760s in Tongio,now a part of modern Tuba.It was during these battles that many Igorot warriors were killed and the town of Tongio,one of the biggest communities of Igorots in Benquet erased off the map.

However,It was only in 1846 when Spain was able to establish a foothold in Benguet,but was not able to penetrate deeper into the Mountain provinces or establish a permanent stronghold.

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Until the time the United States bought the Philippines from the Spaniards, most of the Igorot territories remained free of foreign invaders.


When the Americans came after Spain ceded the Philippine territories, the Igorots were also the last to be conquered after many bloody battles.

Most of these battles were not recorded or in a term used by the historian William Henry Scott, these records were whitewashed by the Americans. Like the former Spanish colonizers before them, the Americans were after one thing. Natural resources.The Igorot land was rich with gold and timber.

After 40 years of American colonization, It was the turn of the Japanese imperial army.

Witnessing the many atrocities committed by the invaders, Igorots join the war against the Japanese and were form into the 66th infantry battalion of the USAFIP-NL operating as a resistance force in the Cordilleras.

Although it was outlawed, many Igorot warriors occasionally forgot about the legalities and lapse into traditional tendencies lopping off the heads of Japanese soldiers.Their courage and fierceness in battle gain them the respect of their American allies and struck fear into the Japanese.

General MacArthur

General MacArthur

"Those Gallant Igorots"

A War Department communique was reported by Time magazine during the last days before the fall of Bataan in the Philippines.

With his battle-weary and outnumbered troops facing imminent collapse under the ever-increasing and ferocious Japanese onslaught, Gen. MacArthur in his weekend communique included the dramatic story of non-christian Igorot native tribesmen who after stopping an attack in hand to hand combat with the enemy,counterattack by riding atop the tanks to guide the American drivers inside.

Hampered by the dense undergrowth and lost in the confusing maze of bamboo thickets,vines and creepers, the tankers would have been impotent had it not been for the aid of the Igorot troops of the 2nd Battalion, 11th infantry.

Hoisted to the top of the tanks where they were exposed to enemy fire The Igorots chopped away the entangling foliage with their bolos and served as eyes for the American tank crew,firing with their pistols while guiding the drivers.

"When the attack was over,"said the General, "the remnants of the tanks and of the Igorots were still there, but the 20th Japanese Infantry Regiment was completely annihilated...

"Many desperate acts of courage and heroism have fallen under my observation on many fields of battle in many parts of the world. I have seen forlorn hopes become realities. I have seen last-ditch stands and innumerable acts of personal heroism that defy description. but for sheer breathtaking and heart stopping desperation, I have never known the equal of those Igorots riding the tanks. Gentlemen, when you tell the story stand in tribute to those gallant Igorots." _Gen. Douglas MacArthur.


When Gen. MacArthur return to the Philippines, Gen. Yamashita's army retreated into the Cordilleras for their final stand.The Igorot soldiers of the 66th joint up with the 121st,14th and the 15th infantry regiments under the command of Col. Russel Volkman.With the help of the US Air Force and Artillery Fire,the Tiger of Malaya finally surrendered in Kiangan, Ifugao. Formal surrender took place on September 3, 1945 at Camp John Hay in the city of Baguio.

Warrior with Chaklag breast tattoo playing a nose flute

Warrior with Chaklag breast tattoo playing a nose flute

Head hunting in the Cordilleras at present

Headhunting ritual continues with a wooden substitute for a real human head, attempts to achieve the cosmological benefits of agricultural fertility without the violence long since outlawed by national laws.

Among the northern Kankana-ey, the Dongtoy ritual is a headhunting rite held every ten years or so (with a substitute head) in order to ensure the fertility of the rice crop.

The last trophy heads cut off by Igorot headhunters of the Cordilleras was supposedly in the late 70's.

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SilentReed (author) from Philippines on February 24, 2017:

It's been awhile since I updated my hubs. Thank you for sharing your research into this fascinating subject and the proud heritage of the Igorot people.

Moses Bilagot on February 05, 2017:

dear silent reed

interesting to see the articles you have posted. you have captured a glimpse of the Igorot history, as a direct grandson of the granchief (pangulo) of the the Igorots let me add more to the articles from the head-hunters side. I come from the tribe called bontoc (kankane-ey) I am now a Canadian citizen and a proffessor in engineering and economics. I am also second in line on the throne after my brother who is also an civil engineer. (although the old political system has been replaced by the american system during the american colonial years my status is now just ceremonial) however most igorots follow the 1000 year traditions. at times igorot senators and congressman still rely on approval by the traditional hirachy during elections.

igorot ethnic origins:

that said the igorot history dates back 2000 yaers or more we have not actually carbon dated the mummies and burial chambers that dot the mountains, however we rely on mummy cave writtings and legends handed down from generations. one possible origins of the igorots were from the borneo, we have found tribes in borneo that have the same cultures and political system as ours including potteries and metallugy techniques. specially gold and silver. hollywood movie the farewell to the king with nick nolte prompted us to research some of the tribes there. other likely origins takes us to the old kingdoms of burma and thailand. the evidence to support that are the engineering and irrigation techniques we use in out rice tarraces. we have also studied the mummies and compared them to the mummification techniques from northern china and Egypt. initial finding show its closer to the egyptian techniques (more reseacrh needed to fully varify)

igorot sence of independence:

the igorot physque are of 2 things. first is the warrior mentality akin to the samurai mentality and the second is the communal spirit for a common goal. these were the secert weapons that resisted the spanish conquestors for 400 years. a lot of thesis have been written about the igorots but most dont touch the obvious. the igorot tribes on the first glance might look like a backward and barbaric people. however, its the opposite, they are a well organised kingdom designed to protect thier culture and thier economic survival from outsiders. the base of their economy is gold, silver and coppor. igorots use this for trade with the lowland people for items that is readily not available in the highlands specially salt (being used for food preservatice and spice) igorots also use this commodity along with their warlike culture to gain infleunce and intimidate over the lowlanders to subjecate them as vassals.

for 400 years the spaniards sent numerous military expeditions to the highlands to search and sieze the igorot mines but with no lasting results. the igorots used intimadation and guerilla tactics to defeat the spaniards. the population became mobile and the high producing mines locations became a closely guarded secret. ambushes and spanish heads on a stake on trails up the mountain will certainly deter any gold fevered conquestador. unlike the incas kingdom of peru who lost their treasures to the spaniards the igorot kingdom have a sudo democratic system. devided into 5 tribes, each tribe is semi autonmous from each other so that if one tribe falls the whole kingdom doesn't fall. case and point in 1840 capt galvey conquered ibaloi tribe in bagiou and trinidad. but could not conquer the other 4 tribes. eventually he was forced to abondon the fort in trinided. same situation in 1700 when the spaniards demolished the igorot city of tadian and lepanto, there is no known igorot king but a series of warrior kings from each tribe all pragmatic in ruling and competance this provided leadership corp that ensured the resistance to this day. today the kingdoms is called the special autonomous regions of the cordelleras. as a note however, the americans were able to conquer and sieze the gold mines using better arms and technology but mostly in my personal opinion they have the same independent mentality as the Igorots.

Head Hunting Practice:

igorots were known for thier head hunting practices used for religious and for all practicall purposes a good way of keeping score (accounting) since there is no common literary system, you can prove to the community you have killed your enemy by showing his head. like billboard same ideas as to scare off the spaniards . harvest sacrifice however are done on cows and buffalos. i remener seeing my grandfather having 32 heads hung from his long house he usually used to have his town meetings

first IGOROT KING was an american (from canada) in 1901 when spain surrendered the philippines to the US after the spanish american war, a canadian journalist named whitemore was installed to be the first governor of mountain province encompassing the 5 tribes. since he is the only recorded ruler of all tribes after 400 yaers, from our ongoing research of his desendants he came from ontario canada moved to michigan or ohio.

i will post an update as we progress on all the above research.

Calvin Pitts on December 26, 2014:

Dear SilentReed,

Just today I discovered your website. What memories it brought back. As a young teen-ager, I went with my parents to the Philippines in 1948 as missionaries.

We lived in Baguio City where I attended Brent Boarding School. But often we would take trips to Bontoc and Ifugau country, deep in the mountains. It was there that I met my first authentic "head-hunter" 67 years ago who spoke with pride about his activities. We bought his sword which I still possess.

43 years later I returned, now an airline captain with DHL Worldwide Express. To my utter surprise, one of my Filipino classmates had become the President of DHL- Philippines. What a reunion we had.

Many of my childhood friends were still there. One was my "adopted" younger sister who came from an Igorot family. My mother had taken her in, nurtured her, and in a Christian sense, "adopted" her. We have kept in touch over the years.

In 1994, I returned and went to her village in Pinukpuk, Kalinga where she was now the head of a government Health Station. That trip, and 2 visits to the famous Ifugau Rice Terraces, was the adventure of my life. I still love looking at the pictures. From Bontoc to the mountain Rice Paddies, I rode on top of one of those mountain buses. It was a dusty ride through magnificent scenery seldom seen by Western eyes.

Even as I write this, I am looking on my wall at "G strings," carvings, mounted spears, knives, shields, hatchets, and head pieces which once belonged to some of my favorite people, the Igorots.

Because so few Americans know about this colorful and warm culture, finding your writing and pictures took me back in time 67 years when I first stood in awe, talking to a proud head-hunter overlooking the 8th wonder of the world, the Igorot Rice Terraces.

Thank you for your account, and the joy it gave this 81-year-old retired pilot. Do you have anything published about yourself, and the reason you became interested in the Igorot culture?


Capt Calvin Pitts (retired), Sadieville, KY

Alone Dewone on August 14, 2014:

Thank you for this well documented information about how our forefathers participated in the past 2 worldwide war. I have been imagining how our ancestors been doing. This gave me great help of understanding the race were I rooted from. Any way I was and always be proud to be an igorot.

Alone Dewone on August 14, 2014:

Thank you for this well documented information about how our forefathers participated in the past 2 worldwide war. I have been imagining how our ancestors been doing. This gave me great help of understanding the race were I rooted from. Any way I was and always be proud to be an igorot.

SilentReed (author) from Philippines on March 08, 2013:

caleb ~ Thank you for the additional information. Much appreciated.

SilentReed (author) from Philippines on March 08, 2013:

nibor yenlit ~ Thanks for the read. Somehow, I manage to miss your comment. Among their many handcrafting skills, the Igorots were specially noted for their woodcarvings. Forty years ago, Woodcarved figures of the nature you described ( Warriors holding spears or the more attention arresting figure of an Igorot headhunter holding aloft a severe head trophy) were common sights at the local market here in Baguio city. Due to rampant deforestation and a logging ban, there are now only a few of these stores selling life size woodcarvings. They cater mostly to foreign tourist. Try looking up Tesoro's Philippine Handicrafts in the internet for more helpful information.

caleb on March 06, 2013:

madam, u should have placed there the fact the bontoc people are the most dominant in head hunting among all the tribes... for further info....

nibor yenlit on December 09, 2012:

SilentReed, thanks for the interesting article. I recently found and purchased a 1.2m tall woodent sculpture of an Igorot (Kalinga?) warrior (identified by his shield). The seller told me she had owned it for 40 years and that it had previously come from a deceased estate, so it is probably 70 years old or more. It is elaborate and beautifully carved from a single log of wood. He holds a spear in his right hand. In his left hand he holds the shield but also what looks to be a broad-bladed knife in a sheath, partly hidden behind the shield. On his back he carries what appears to be a 'backpack' made from a turtle shell secured to a frame of some kind. Hanging at his side, from a braided cord slung around his neck, is a small pouch which looks to be woven from plant material. And he has a small dog at his heels. I would love to know where it might have come from. I'll upload a photograph when I learn how. Thanks.

Albert Bayot from Philippines on November 26, 2012:

I am from Baguio but sadly I do not share the native bloodline. It is sad that most people from the Cordilleras, especially in the more developed areas like Baguio, people tend to forget the history of their people.

"Such battles, lasting about 30- minutes to an hour often ceases after the taking of a single head by either side. But there were cases where fights last for half a day and a dozen or more heads taken." - I have no trouble believing this at all! Igorots are known for their fighting prowess and unbelievable cardio. That's why even today they dominate in MMA and in other combat sports.

SilentReed (author) from Philippines on September 08, 2012:

diyomarpandan ~ That is an interesting topic. Looking forward to reading your hub. Brings to mind Ichabod Crane and the legend of Sleepy Hollow. But I assume yours would be factual. The Igorot headhunters worship the anitos, and priests send to Christianize them probably lost their heads in the process. Of course that was a long time ago:)

SilentReed (author) from Philippines on July 17, 2012:

Lokz ~ Hello neighbor :) Feel free to share this article on your FB and thank you. My late mother is from Kapangan and I presently reside in Baguio city.

Lokz on July 13, 2012:

Wow! This is great! My love for our heritage was rekindled only when I was in my 30's. I dread the younger years when I am ashamed of my roots. I stumbled on the Guttenberg Project online book of THE BONTOC IGOROTS by Albert Jenks that you mentioned some years ago and I couldn't be any prouder of who I am. Thanks for this blog and can I share it on my FB please? I am from Tublay and Kibungan, so that makes us neighbors I suppose.

SilentReed (author) from Philippines on June 13, 2012:

Geof Soriano ~ Hello :) thank you for your comment as well as for posting this on your FB account. Have a beautiful day :)

Geof Soriano on June 12, 2012:

Very detailed article, kind sir. If I may ask, where did you get those pictures? It's really astonishing. I haven't seen these pictures in Baguio's Museum, very rare indeed. I'll post this on my FB account. Thank you sir :)

SilentReed (author) from Philippines on May 12, 2012:

Alex ~ Thanks for dropping by. The Igorots have a proud heritage. They have and are continuing to distinguish themselves in many fields of endeavor. Do you recall the off the cuff remark of a local actress/tv host from the lowlands about the Igorots that cause a furor? This prejudice comes from ignorance and preconceive opinion without any factual evidence.

Alex on May 12, 2012:

It's a great article... I spent whole night reading it over and over. I intentionally searched articles regarding the battle of pocket bataan (where Igorots are the unsung heroes) when I saw it circulating on FB. Then I came across your fascinating story. As an igorot, I'm proud to be one.

It's just sad to think that up to this time majority of the lowlanders don't know Igorots.

SilentReed (author) from Philippines on April 30, 2012:

cocomucho ~ Hi! Welcome to Hubpages and thank you for sharing this hub on your FB. Cordillerans who have gone abroad in search of economic advancement cherish and are deeply rooted to their rich cultural heritage. Btw, my mother is from Kapangan :)

Windy Sacki Capuyan from Philippines on April 30, 2012:

IGOROTAK (I am an Igorot) My dad is from Sagada and my mom is from Bontoc.I was so glad to come across your HUB, sir! shared this on my FB. This will be a great tool to share and give information about our very rich and wonderful culture! Kudos!

SilentReed (author) from Philippines on February 16, 2012:

jennycat ~ Thank you for the interesting trivia. It shouldn't come as a surprise,since the Igorots are a very courageous people. Adventurous too!(didn't you just had a moment of hesitation on your first flight?:) I would also love to read your article about these proud race of people. Have a beautiful day...everyday :)

jennycai from Manila on January 28, 2012:

wow... I have been planning to write something about this ever since I read about it on facebook, but got no time to do so... additional information about the igorots, the very first filipino who became a passenger in a plane is an igorot chieftain. how is that for the aviation history hehe :)

I am proud of every single drop of blood that runs trough my veins.. a blood pass on to me from those brave warriors...

reading things like this lift my spirit, makes me raise the banner of pride of being an igorot...

SilentReed (author) from Philippines on December 03, 2011:

leroy64 ~ The Igorots were skilled not only in mountain farming but also in wood carving,Jewelry making and weaving. They have assimilated into mainstream society. Their younger generation are doctors,engineers,teachers,lawyers etc. and where you find a filipino community in other parts of the world, chances are you will find Igorots among them.

Brian L. Powell from Dallas, Texas (Oak Cliff) on November 03, 2011:

The rice fields look impressive. Growing crops in mountainous terrain is never easy. I assume the Igorat were skilled farmers. Am I correct? This is the first I have heard of this people.

SilentReed (author) from Philippines on November 03, 2011:

scarytaff ~ Glad you like it :) Thank you for voting it up.

SilentReed (author) from Philippines on November 03, 2011:

imatellmuva ~ You're welcome :) Thank you for dropping by.

Derek James from South Wales on November 02, 2011:

Thank you for the view of this fascinating history. Very well presented. Voted up.

imatellmuva from Somewhere in Baltimore on October 24, 2011:

Thanks! Again....FASCINATING!!

SilentReed (author) from Philippines on October 23, 2011:

imatellmuva ~ School was out for the summer vacation. I joined a group of friends who wanted to see the Igorot burial caves as well as the hanging coffins of Sagada. :)

imatellmuva from Somewhere in Baltimore on October 21, 2011:

Wow Silent Reed!!! Do you mind I ask what your trip to the Cordillera Mountains was for? Just that tidbit alone shows the fascination in your life's journey's!

SilentReed (author) from Philippines on October 18, 2011:

imatellmuva ~ The history of the Igorots is fascinating.They are a proud race with an ancient culture.Among the last to capitulate to foreign invaders.Although their practice of headhunting may be gruesome,try not to "lost your head" over it. The practice have long been discarded. I still remember many moons ago(younger days:)when I had an Igorot warrior, complete with body tattoo and tribal attire for a seatmate on a bus that was going up to the Cordillera mountains.He was friendly and good company during the long trip. Of course,with good humor he mention that it was not the matchmaking season during which young swains took off heads to offer marriageable maidens as proof of their courage and manhood :)

imatellmuva from Somewhere in Baltimore on October 17, 2011:

I was intrigued by the title of this hub, and further pulled in by your immediate description of head hunting. I truly love history, and can't say that I recall reading about or seeing a documentary on the Igorot Warrior. I was going to stop reading and look up what the word igorot translates to, but like the rest of your content, you clearly defined it. This was quite an interesting read. Very informative, and thorough.

SilentReed (author) from Philippines on October 15, 2011:

denden mangubat ~ Thank you for your comment. Yes, Christianity came to the Cordilleras via the Spanish Conquistador. The Spaniards held the Bible in one hand and the sword on the other.

denden mangubat from liloan, cebu, philippines on October 15, 2011:

some of them were already christianized and then they stop beheading

SilentReed (author) from Philippines on November 10, 2010:

Randele A. Arcilla ~ I appreciate the time and effort it must have taken you. thank you for the additional information about the Cordilleran's contribution to the war effort.

Randele A. Arcilla on November 09, 2010:

The Igorot and Cordilleran men to joined the tank commanders of over several Tank Battalions, Medium Tank Battalions, Cruiser Tank Battalions and Tank Destroyer Battalions under the 11th, 14th, 15th, 66th and 121st Philippine Commonwealth Army Infantry Regiments of the United States Armed Forces in the Philippines - Northern Luzon or USAFIP-NL to founding the Liberation on Northern Luzon in 1945.

Many Igorot and Cordilleran tank commanders included the all several Sherman Tanks, Stuart Tanks, Chaffee Tanks, Crusader Tanks and many others was founded the USAFIP-NL Tank Battalions under the 11th, 14th, 15th, 66th and 121st Regiments and the Tank Battalions under the ongoing and pre-war Infantry Divisions and Infantry Regiments of the Philippine Commonwealth Army during the Liberation era in 1945.

SilentReed (author) from Philippines on October 08, 2010:

Hi Charlie. Again thank you for your comments. Movies like "Dances with wolves" gives us a new perspective on the native Americans. We see the world with their eyes and we realize that we share the same feelinngs..we ache..we laugh..we is the same with the Igorots.

ralwus on October 08, 2010:

Gee SR, I am so glad to know that I inspired this wonderful hub by writing poems about American Natives. You did a magnificent job in the telling and writing of it all and you put a lot of effort into it too. The photos really enhance the readers understanding and I cannot seem to keep my eyes off of that poor headless victim with cuts all over his body and legs. Thanks again, Charlie

SilentReed (author) from Philippines on October 07, 2010:

SilverGenes ~Thanks and I'm glad you enjoyed the read . The Igorots are a minority and there is discrimination because of misinformation. If this hub could help dispel some misconception about their culture and tradition then this article would have serve it's purpose.

SilentReed (author) from Philippines on October 07, 2010:

masmasika~ You're welcome.

SilverGenes on October 07, 2010:

Wow SilentReed! This has so much information and is written so well I didn't want it to end! Though I'm glad the headhunting ended - but not until the late '70s!? Yikes!

masmasika on October 07, 2010:

Silent Reed thanks for allowing me to link your article. I will do it after the exams as I am too busy preparing paper works for the kids. Exams will be next week. Thanks again.

SilentReed (author) from Philippines on October 06, 2010:

Thank you Charlie. It may surprise you to know that the idea for this hub came from your articles on Native Americans "Logan's Sun","The magnificent Tarhe" and "Chief Little Turtle".

ralwus on October 06, 2010:

Wow SR. This is a really cool hub. Now, I must say, it is gruesome to us westerners, but I can understand it all. I had a friend long ago that served as a marine over there, he shared a black and white photo of himself and one of those headhunters you write of. In his hand was the swollen head of a Jap Soldier he'd lopped off with a machete. Noel said they had the utmost respect for those guys and that they could sneak up on the Japs like a tiger and take a head before the victim even knew it. Good stuff and I enjoyed reading it. That victim on the pole is . . .er, pretty sad to look at, but it is history.

SilentReed (author) from Philippines on October 06, 2010:

Randele A. Arcilla ~ They say old soldiers just fade away. But not in the memories of a grateful people who remember their deeds of courage in the hour of need.

Randele A. Arcilla on October 06, 2010:

Remembering to all Igorot soldiers of the 66th Infantry Regiment, Philippine Commonwealth Army, USAFIP-NL to fall of liberate in Baguio City and Benguet Province in 1945 to defeating Japanese troops led by General Yamashita.

After 60 Years Later, Many Igorot WW2 Veterans in Baguio City as heroes to joining the old soldiers of the 66th Philippine Commonwealth Army Infantry Regiments of the United States Army Forces in the Philippines - North Luzon or USAFIP-NL founded the liberation in Baguio and Benguet in 1945.

SilentReed (author) from Philippines on October 05, 2010:

Nell Rose ~ Thank you for your comments. A single hub will not do justice to the fascinating history of the Igorots. They have many admirable traits and I had to limit my topic on their courage as a warrior and also try to understand their reasons for the practice of headhunting.

Nell Rose from England on October 04, 2010:

Hi, fascinating history and life of these amazing people, I often watch old film reels on TV about the tribes from different parts of the world, but this was much better and very detailed information, thanks nell

SilentReed (author) from Philippines on October 04, 2010:

masmasika ~ My mother is from Kapangan and Baguio. If you should decide to link this hub with your Tan-O blog.I would appreciate it if you or your readers will inform me of any inaccuracy of my data so I can make the necessary correction. Thank you.

masmasika on October 03, 2010:

SilentReed you have written an amazing hub about the Igorots. It's a shame I am an igorot but I don't know so much about my history. I am running out of time because I just saw your article but I'll come back tonight to read about it. If you could allow me, can I put this in my Igorot blog and put a link? thanks. From where are you?

SilentReed (author) from Philippines on October 02, 2010:

CMCastro ~ I'm glad I was able to shed some light about your roots. Knowledge can help dispel or at least lessen the misinformation that create prejudice against other races especially the minorities.

Christina M. Castro from Baltimore,MD USA on October 02, 2010:

When I was a little girl, my parents collected art work from around the world including from my Dad's native home the Philippines. For all my life I have looked at these statues of Igorots but knew very little about them. This hub was highly informative and relates to the life my relatives went through during World War 2. Thanks for the hub.

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