The Nagas

Hill Peoples of Northeast India

Project Introduction The Naga Database

Typescript - J.P. Mills, Tour Diary, November to December 1936

caption: Pleasant reunion with a friendly chief at Chingmei; inter-village conflicts; problems concerning the rescue of slaves
medium: tours
person: Chingmak/ of Chingmei
ethnicgroup: Konyak
location: Chingmei Yakko Chentang Mokokchung Pangsha Saochu Kejok (Kejuk) Pimpang Noko (Nokhu) Wui Chenchung Tobu Yakao (Yukhao) Panso Yimpang
date: 20.11.1936
person: Mills/ J.P.
date: 11.1936-12.1936
person: School of Oriental and African Studies Library, London
text: 20th November
text: To Chingmei (sq.60) - 8 miles. We had an easy climb up to the Yakko saddle. This is a notorious place for ambushes, as raiders can come along the path from the East, cut up travellers between Chentang and Chingmei and slip away to safety again. At this point we were met by an escort of Chingmei scouts in full panoply, a very fine sight indeed. I noticed several men wore strong cane guards on the right upper arm, the left side being protected by the shield. They had patrolled the Yakko path for us, and we sent a signalling party of two sections up to the peak at over 8000 feet. Through them we got into communication with Mokokchung during the afternoon.
text: The road down to Chingmei is an easy one through heavily jhumed country. The chief, Chingmak, is a very old personal friend of mine and we had a great reception. A camp had been cleared on a good site, and eleven huge houses were ready for us. The houses were lavishly decorated with carvings of hornbills and the male emblem accurately executed in wood: this was intended as a compliment, and Chingmei may be said to have conferred the order of manhood on us. There was a pleasant surprise waiting for us. The message from Pangsha I got yesterday was a few days old. Our continued advance has convinced Pangsha that we mean business, and three of the four slaves they took were waiting for us at Chingmei. The fourth, a little girl, has been sold three (Naga) days march away in Burma, and it will be for that Government to rescue her if they can.
text: We now have five rescued slaves with us - a girl of about 25, a boy of about 16 and two little boys, from Saochu (sq.107) and a little girl from Kejuk (sq.83). Their condition is pitiable, and their experiences seem to have driven them almost out of their minds; they just sit in inert heaps. Saochu is really a Konyak village, and no one here can speak to the children properly. It is therefore impossible to get any account of their treatment. But ample food and kindness will improve matters. This result is very satisfactory, but our mission is not over. Pangsha have sent a message to say they will not allow us to approach their village. If we submit to this effrontery they will regard us as weak and we shall have more raids. I am therefore going to send them a message through Pimpang to say that we intend to visit them. Nokhu also remains to be dealt with. They hold, according to the latest information, nine slaves out of ten they recently captured from Wui and Chenchung in the tribal area. As I am so near them I cannot ignore the raid. Tobu came in to see us. They were mixed up in the Saochu raid and have made amends by feeding the camp lavishly. Yukhao, a small colony of Panso, also came in. They told me that men from Pangsha have been to their village and watched the making of the camp further down the valley. They have said they will cut up any village who help us in any way, even their old friends Yimpang. I told Yimpang we would do our utmost to prevent their being molested for the assistance they have given.