The Nagas

Hill Peoples of Northeast India

Project Introduction The Naga Database

typescript - J.H. Hutton's tour diary in the Naga Hills

caption: compounder working as schoolteacher at Chichama; Lazemi objection to panikhets; complaint that they had to carry during harvest - tabu; request for bridge - Hutton offers telegraph wire for a suspension bridge
medium: tours
person: Theyakrile
location: Lazami (Lazemi) Chechama (Chichama) Tophema (Tophima) Mokokchung Taghu Stream Iphonumi (Iphonomi) Baimho Nantaleik R. (Tizu R.)
date: 20.8.1923
person: Hutton/ J.H.
date: 19.8.1923-25.8.1923
person: Pitt Rivers Museum Archive, Oxford
refnum: Hutton Ms. Box 2
text: 20th
text: To Lazemi. On the way I had a look at Chichama School. I found the school being taught, quite decently, by Theyakrile, who is a passed compounder. It is absurd, of course, to have a compounder wasted as a village School Master. As far as I can remember he was left temporarily without a job when Primi guard was withdrawn, and put in as a stop gap, both for himself and the school, at Chichama. Then he was forgotten and there he still is, but I am under the impression that the Civil Surgeon is wanting a Naga Compounder, and the sooner Theyakrile goes back to his compounding the better. Anyway money has been spent on training him for that and I am not prepared to keep him in the school if there is a vacancy for a compounder.
text: From Chichama through Tophima to Lazemi, a very muddy path through panikhets, and phenomenally hot in the valley. Lazemi is rather a village by itself. It objects to panikhets because it is impossible to grow sesamun, cotton, gourds, pumpkins, beans etc. among the wet rice, but it has as few wet terraces and uses stone retaining walls for its jhums. Its houses are of a round-backed shape I have seen nowhere else, and it puts up stones as well as wooden forks and bamboo genna poles. They don't grow cucumbers, and don't build cane suspension bridges.
text: The village complained that for three years running they have been called to carry mal for the sepoys going to relieve Mokokchung during the harvest. This is not only inconvenient but is apparently tabu as they ought not to eat away from the village till the crop is cut, an excellent rule of course, as it ensures the work being done as fast as possible. I am doubtful about the three years, but I believe they were called on during their harvest last year. Probably the Commandant could arrange to relieve Mokokchung early in January and if so this would be the most convenient time, I think, for villages all along the road, as the wet rice is also all in by then. The jhum is mostly in in November and December or even the end of November would probably do quite well if January is inconvenient.
text: The dobashis asked for a bridge over the Taghu stream, which is only bridged by the village when cultivating on the far side, ie. for two years in 10 to 15. Three Iphonomi men were drowned at the ford last year. I said I could not run to another bridge, but that if they would put it up, I would let them have some telegraph wire which I have and which does nicely for suspension bridges. Baimho has built one over the Tizu with it this year.