About this Collection
U.S. and Philippine officials used the 1904 World's Fair to acquaint visitors with their products, industries, art, peoples, education and customs. Secretary of War, William H. Taft, who had been governor of the Philippine Islands, had the initial idea to present the exhibit.
Covering 47 acres and with more than 100 buildings, the Philippine Reservation was the largest exhibit at the Fair. Arrowhead Lake separated the Reservation from other parts of the Fair. Fairgoers walked across the Bridge of Spain that spanned this lake to visit the Reservation.
Admission to the Reservation was free; but there was a charge to visit the different villages.
The Reservation consisted of native villages presenting the life of the Negritos, Igorotes, Moros, and other groups. Over 1,000 people and families from these groups lived on the Reservation during the Fair introducing visitors to their customs and daily activities. The Reservation had its own native constabulary and band.
In addition to the village buildings, there were other buildings and museums on the Reservation containing exhibits of native woods, commerce, agricultural products and even a model school.