National Geographic : 1966 Jun
the Kaulong and the Sengseng, living in the Passismanua area of southwest New Britain (map, page 799). These people and their close neighbors practice a skill not found elsewhere among Melanesians-they hunt with blow guns. They also bind their infants' skulls to elongate them into a shape regarded as fashionable (pages 806-7). Island Made Headlines in World War II Despite these differences, the Kaulong and Sengseng speak languages related to those of other Melanesians. We had to learn their tongues, for only a handful of Kaulong and Sengseng had acquired a knowledge of pidgin English, the "trade language" spoken through out New Britain and elsewhere in the Trust Territory of New Guinea.* Few Americans had even heard of New Britain until World War II, when the Japa nese fortified Rabaul and slowed the Allies' island-hopping campaign. Fighting also flared around New Britain's western end and in ad joining waters. In the Battle of the Bismarck Sea, in March, 1943, Allied air and naval units destroyed a huge enemy convoy. Since 1947, the island has been part of a United Nations trust territory administered by Australia. *John Scofield wrote of New Guinea and its peoples in the May, 1962, NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC. Bandaging cuts, treating burns, and dis pensing aspirin, Dr. Chowning aids the vil lagers of Dulago. She left teaching duties at Barnard College, New York City, to accom pany the author to New Britain. Dr. Good ale, on leave from Bryn Mawr College in Pennsylvania, lived in Umbi, half a day's walk from Dulago. Resting after a day's hike to Lapalam, the author and her porters wait for a dinner of taro to cook on the fire in foreground. In this land of heavy rains, officials encourage con struction of plank houses raised on stilts.