The Nagas

Hill Peoples of Northeast India

Project Introduction The Naga Database

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

caption: Poor crops at Mokokchung; anabaptistry converts; inspection of Lines, ponies and school
medium: tours
ethnicgroup: LhotaAoSangtamSema
location: Mokokchung Longmisa Charali Wokha
date: 20.7.1928-24.7.1928
person: Hutton/ J.H.
date: 5.7.1928-30.7.1928
person: Pitt Rivers Museum Archive, Oxford
refnum: Hutton Ms. Box 2
text: 20 - 24 July
text: Halted Mokokchung. The crops here are unwelcome contrast to the Lhotas'. There the rice appears to be an exceptionally good crop as far as it has gone, but in the Ao and Sangtam country great patches of cultivated land are bare and show at a distance as brown patches on the hill sides instead of vivid green. Longmisa is said to have lost virtually its whole crop but else- where only patches have gone completely, though much is very thin and poor. It is put down by the other tribes to too early sowing, but by the Aos themselves to untimely sun.
text: Many Sema Christians came in, I do not understand why anabaptistry should be so intimately associated with old clothes unless it is itself a cast-off among sects, discarded by all but the ill-educated - or perhaps it is that the desire for a better world can be satisfied the more rapidly by the dissemination of phthisis and the other germs in which second-hand garments are so prolific.
text: I visited the fort, Lines and Transport Lines of the 3rd A.R. Last time I was here I suggested that a couple of iron water pipes be sent for the flag staff, but one has come without any screw on it and it is impossible to join the two. A fresh pipe with a screw end is wanted and also a joint-piece.
text: The lines are nearly all thatched. One new building is roofed with planks but unfortunately the wood was not seasoned so that the planks are warped and let in rain and have been mended with old kerosene tins. Probably a really good coat of paint or tar would cure the trouble, but the Indian Officer says that tar is not used as it melts too easily with the heat from the sun and the fires inside. The rest of the lines all need rebuilding with tin roofs; thatch is very expensive in repairs, and gives a lot of work to the Sub-divisional Officer who has to impress it, and the building that is on the verge of collapse should certainly be made pukka instead of being rebuilt in kachha materials. If battalion labour were used it ought not to cost a great deal. Other buildings could be done one by one. They are not large.
text: I saw all the transport ponies. Out of 29 there were 10 sick. Most of them had just come back from Charali. There are certain disadvantages about the Charali route as against the Wokha route. One is the horse flies, which are much worse in the hot weather than on the other bridle path, the other is the greater number of steep hills on some of which the path is inconveniently narrow as compared with the Wokha path. To set against this is, presumably, the greater number of ponies available, as none are needed to meet the Mokokchung convoy and the strength of the meeting convoy is available at Mokokchung. Except for this I should certainly recommend a return to the other route. Some of the ponies had their heads and shoulders flecked with hairless patches where according to the Havildar gad flies had bitten them. They could probably be protected by Kam-berol, but it might come rather expensive. One pony I noticed with no galls. The reason given was that it was new and young and therefore had enough flesh to prevent the saddles rubbing too deep against the bones. It had just come off convoy, but nearly all the others just back from convoy were badly galled. Except for galls and fly bites the ponies were in good condition, well fed and with healthy coats.
text: I visited the School with the Sub-divisional Officer and we examined some of the upper boys to see which should be sent to the Middle English School at Kohima. The teaching seems good for a Naga Hills Primary School, and the building entirely inadequate. There are two pandits but only one room for both to teach in, and the benches are crowded. An estimate has been made for a permanent building and it will be budgetted for next year.
text: I went down to see the lac, but it is too high, I fancy, to do much good here.