The White House, Samal Island.

white house samal

The White House is one of the few historic buildings on Samal Island, the house itself is close to derelict and no one lives there any more but visitors seem to be welcomed here, when you arrive you will probably be spotted and greeted by some of the locals who live very close by. They will give you a talk on the place and show you round in exchange for a small tip. But there is no reason why you cannot wander round on your own, you will be rewarded by not only by examining the outside of this historic building close up, but by extensive views over Davao City on the other side of the water.

The main house itself is unsafe to enter now but you can safely go into the ground level area where you will see a large hole dug by treasure seekers.

The main significance of The White House is it's association with General Moncado and the religious cult he founded the Moncadistas, at it's height the organisation had many thousands of followers. On my last visit my guide told me that many of the people of Barangay Limao including himself are still Moncadistas and that they are strict vegans, eating their fruit and vegetables raw. So clearly this cult still survives today at some level.

After my visit I spent some time researching General Moncado and his relationship to The White House on the net, however the more I searched the more enigmatic things became. While it is clear to me that The General was a very charismatic and well educated figure when you research his life story it is hard to pin down the man himself and get a clear picture. On one hand he was a war hero fighting against the Japanese occupation but on the other hand there was a question of collaboration with the enemy of which he was subsequently cleared. And as far as his association with The White House goes you will find that he spent large portions of his life abroad in America and in other countries and so perhaps was not in residence here in Samal for very long.

If you want to know more about him then there is plenty of material on the internet you can study, just Google his name { General Hilario Camino Moncado } but I suspect you will find as I have found that in many respects the man was an enigma. One thing is for sure though, he was a great Filipino ...

Click HERE to see it on Google maps.