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  • Writer's pictureVeronica Pulumbarit

Aguinaldo Mansion: Where PH Independence was proclaimed 122 years ago

Philippine Independence was proclaimed on June 12, 1898 in Kawit, Cavite in front of the ancestral house of General Emilio Aguinaldo, who became the first and youngest Philippine president.

The country's declaration of independence from Spain, which has colonized the Philippines from 1565 to 1898, was marked by three important events:

(1) Reading of the 21-page "Acta de la Proclamacion de la Independencia del Pueblo Filipino" by its author, Ambrosio Rianzares Bautista, Aguinaldo's war counselor;

(2) Official unfurling of the Philippine flag, made in Hong Kong by Marcela Agoncillo, Lorenza Agoncillo, and Delfina Herboza, and

(3) Playing of composer Julian Felipe's "Marcha Nacional Filipina" (now known as "Lupang Hinirang") by the San Francisco de Malabon band.

Aguinaldo Mansion

The Aguinaldo Mansion is dubbed as the House of History and is now called Aguinaldo Shrine, a museum that showcases artifacts from Aguinaldo and his family, especially the military uniforms and shoes he wore, the guns and swords he possessed, his medals, as well as the one-of-a-kind wood furniture and decor he commissioned.

According to the National Historical Commission of the Philippines, the museum has five galleries:

Gallery 1: Aguinaldo’s early years up to the Katipunan (the Kataastaasan, Kagalanggalangang Katipunan ng mga Anak ng Bayan revolutionary association formed in 1892);

Gallery II: The revolution that began in 1896 and the Declaration of Independence on June 12, 1898;

Gallery III: The Road to the First Philippine Republic, also known as the Malolos Republic;

Gallery IV: Filipino–American War from February 4, 1899 to July 2, 1902.

The Aguinaldo Mansion was constructed in 1845 from nipa-and-thatch materials. Four years later, it was reconstructed using Philippine hardwood.

A major renovation was done in the 1920s when the house took on an art deco style. It had unique architectural details with a nationalistic theme such as the wooden carving of the Philippine map above the dining table.

In 1963, a year before his death, Aguinaldo donated to the Filipino people the house where he lived in.

The house was declared a national shrine in 1964 and was placed under the care of the National Museum of the Philippines. The care and maintenance of the house was transferred to the National Historical Commission in 1972.


Barangay Kaingen, Kawit, Cavite 4104

Contact Number: (046) 484 7643 / 09176564132


FB: @museoniemilioaguinaldo

The author, Veronica Pulumbarit, wrote about the Aguinaldo Mansion for View Magazine in 2015. The photos below were taken by photographer Riz Pulumbarit.

To see more photos, please go to the Art Cards and Photos DOWNLOAD page of Art Style Manila.

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