Bicol Mail

Special Report

The Bicol Martyrs of 1896 revisited

April 19, 2012 by admin in Special Report

By Jose V. Barrameda, Jr.

ON 3 March 1941, the Social Sciences classes of the Camarines Sur High School (now the Camarines Sur National High School) issued an invitation to its program in honor of the “Fifteen Bicol Martyrs.” It was a year after Director of Education Celedonio Salvador of the Bureau of Education, on 20 February 1940, issued Circular No. 15, s. 1940, advising all Division

Superintendents of the inclusion in the Perpetual Index of significant events in Philippine history and the observance and study of the “Execution of the Filipino Martyrs from the Bicol Region.” The circular repeated a blooper, but the laudable intent was there (Jose V. Barrameda, Jr., “The Filipino Martyrs from Kabikolan,” Encounter Magazine, 1989).

Significantly, those brave young sons and daughters of Bicol chose their initial observance and commemoration, though two months late, at a time when Kabikolan had just gone under the heels of a new invader: the Imperial Japanese Army.

In truth, only 11 were executed. Three others died following their exile from the Philippines and a fourth one, Leon Hernandez, expired inside the oppressively hot and fetid Ciudad de Nueva Caceres (now Naga City) prison even before any of all those arrested in 1896 could face trial in court. Their monument in the Plaza de Quince Martires, undoubtedly a most fitting icon for the city which contributed the most number of those arrested in 1896, has been called “an allegation in stone” in an aborted attempt at a master’s thesis. An example of the colonial viewpoint? According to a Filipino nationalist, such a colonial viewpoint “still exerts its influence on many writers of Philippine history . . . too many Filipinos continue to carry the dead weight of colonial consciousness.” For this we have to thank an American school system that, supposedly more enlightened than the colonial Spanish one, suppressed all details of history that could have made us better Filipinos, less pliant to the wiles of imperialism and neo-colonialism. We were lobotomized of our cultural and historic sense.

One such instance is the matter of the men in Bicol who were arrested between mid-September to around mid-October in 1896. How many really merit the mantle of martyrdom? Certainly there were more than fifteen who were dragged from their homes, mostly in the dead of night, by Civil Guards, Spanish Volunteers, or cuadrilleros, for incarceration and unspeakable torture. In less than four weeks time, nearly four score men were apprehended and subjected to brutal treatment and no small loss of blood.

True, the monument in the city, conceived by legislative fiat and made possible by public subscription, has the inscription: “EL PUEBLO DE CAMARINES SUR A SUS 15 MARTIRES DEL ’96.” But even before the 1920s and the design of the monument by Crispulo Zamora, the public already referred to the initial 11 Bicolanos and two strangers felled with them by firing squad as the “Trece Martires Bicolanos.” There was no reference then to Camarines Sur; this came as a grand flourish of ephemeral politics. Today people still readily refer to the 15 in the monument as Bicol Martyrs, not as sons of Camarines Sur or any such similar nomenclature. Perhaps the people instinctively regard the 15 to be representative of an exceptionally tragic episode in Bicol life. But then, do we disremember the many others who, though not cut down like the 11 by bullets, suffered the same special ferocity from otherwise civilized and principled men of God and the military? Was the loss of their identity from collective memory in fact a confirmation of the efficacy of an educational system designed to be a tool for the relatively bloodless subjugation of a people? Note that the inscription on the monument describes the honorees as martires, martyrs, rather than anything else.

To a colonial power with ostensibly benign intentions, a memorial to 15 victims is still manageable. Early photographs of the monument in fact show the American flag on it with the Philippine flag.

But a memorial to some 50 of them (or a total of more than 70 from a wider geographical cast within an ethnically homogenous region) situated in one place can become a potent rallying point of resistance to tyranny foreign-based or homegrown.

To this day, the quibble remains over who should be called a martyr of 1896, and why.

Embarrassingly enough, it was an American missionary turned Philippine historiographer who provided a succinct and objective definition of what constituted martyrdom, specifically in the context of 1896. In writing for the Philippine Social Sciences and Humanities Review in 1979, William Henry Scott (“The Nine Clergy of Nueva Segovia”) drew primarily on a manuscript volume entitled Relatos Varios o Martirios de los nueve Clerigos de Nueve Segovia complicados en una supuesta conspiracion en las provincias de la Union e Ilocos Sur, como relacionada con la Insurrection tagala, que estallo a fines de Agosto de 1896, Manila (“Various Accounts, or Martyrdoms of the Nine Clergy of Nueva Segovia implicated in a supposed conspiracy in the Provinces of La Union and Ilocos Sur . . . “). The accounts so closely correspond to those in the Bicol provinces—from the discovery of the alleged plot in the same middle part of September 1896, the immediate imprisonment of prominent persons, the canard about arms shipment, the arrest of telegraph operators (Isabelo Aguilar in Nueva Caceres and Juan Pimentel in Daet) for use as possible false accusers—that one begins to wonder if the friars themselves were in fact the ones who had concocted a coordinated nationwide plot against the Filipinos, and not the other way around.

As Scott pointed out in his 1979 paper, the “martyrdoms” referred to in the manuscript’s title “were not deaths, of course, but death-like torments, the Spanish term martirio being applicable in both contexts.” Four priests and five seminarians in the Diocese of Nueva Segovia underwent those traumatic torments.

Within the older Diocese of Nueva Caceres, largely in the geographic confines of pre-Hispanic Ibalonland, 77 subjects of Spain, four of them native clerics, were apprehended (the 78th was in Mother Spain). Six of those 78, our research showed, would not qualify in the pantheon of 1896 martyrs. Despite the extensive biography written by Jacinto Ursua and Ignacio Meliton (“Martires Bicolanos: Un Episodio de la Revolucion del `96”), Tomas Arejola, otherwise a patriot beyond question and among the lights in the Propaganda Movement, fails to make the cut. Arrested on 23 August, over three weeks before the start of the pogrom in Bicol, Arejola was detained with nary a scratch for four days in the Carcel Modelo of Madrid, and then set free (Evelyn Caldera Soriano, Bicol Revolutionaries). Five others from Baao, Camarines Sur, two of whom are in fact in our genealogical tree, were picked up in October and brought to Nueva Caceres where they stayed as “gentlemen prisoners” (prisioneros caballeros) for two months, tasked only the whole while to report daily to Provincial Civil Governor Ricardo Lacosta (Luis Dato, “Of Baao, Secular and Idyllic Town of Our Birth,” Baao Fiesta Souvenir Program, August 23-25, 1952). None among the other 72 had the good luck of the fortunate six. Instead, they felt the weight of their martyrdoms, almost from the moment of their apprehension, from a combination of human cupidity, prejudice, and religious bigotry.

Reading through the accounts of the brutal treatment and soul-shattering agony those men underwent, one almost doubts their veracity at first. But their stories contain not only a common thread and the ring of truth but a startling similarity to those that happened in Nueva Segovia, at the other end of Luzon.

One of the more common stories told about excessive physical abuse involved the flogging of the Bicolano prisoners, usually with a rattan whip until the victims’ back, buttocks and inner legs were raw and bloody. A first-hand account by Vicente Ursua (“Memoirs of the Revolution of 1896,” by an unnamed translator) recalls that he, his cousin Leon Hernandez, and his brother-in-law Pablo Perpetua received 200 lashes each while tied to the stair posts of the Libmanan convent immediately after their arrest. The town’s parish priest, Franciscan Fray Jose Serrano, ordered the whippings and personally watched. The overt participation of Fray Serrano, described as “a very ferocious and cruel priest” (sarong ma isogon asin ma bagñis na padi), was not an isolated case. Those brought to the filthy basement of the Franciscan infirmary or the equally squalid and vermin-infested sirong of the parish house in Nueva Caceres (and these included the three from Libmanan) received similar kicks, slaps and punches from members of the Seraphic Order of Saint Francis in the Ciudad de Españoles that Fray Serrano delivered personally in his rural convento. Personal degradation went hand in hand with physical abuse, as Filipino priests and laymen alike were made to eat on the floor, unwashed and more often than not infected or swollen hands unshackled twice a day for the daily diet of a cupful of stale rice and, sometimes, a piece of spoiled fish. Even in the confines of the San Agustin convent in Intramuros, the Augustinians friars provided the prison-fare of rice so rotten that “even dogs would refuse to eat,” recounted Rev. Fr. Severo Estrada. Eugenio Ocampo, at sea for incarceration in Manila, was handed the supreme insult: the rice was served in an orinola (a chamber pot) where a Spanish guard has just relieved himself. (Ursua and Meliton, op.cit.).

The friars’ frenzy centered on the alleged links between the Katipunan and Masonry, and Franciscan Inquisitors strove mightily to forge the specious connection with body blows on those brought before them—or those whom they covertly ordered brought before them during secret denunciations made mostly in the Casino Español to civil officials, the Guardia Civil, and Spanish home guards, the Voluntarios. The accounts of the Bicolano victims are replete with this. The Taliban-like zeal of the Seraphic warriors, one suspects, had less to do with the KKK (which simply borrowed certain Masonic rites and symbols) than with the centuries-old reactionary Vatican duel with the anathematized movement. Masonry had spread all over the archipelago at that time. And there was the added local embarrassment over a Spanish priest turned Freemason, Don Juan Utor (Fray Marcos Gomez, La Revolucion en la Provincia de Ambos Camarines ). His visits had spurred the spread of Masonry in Camarines, particularly in Libmanan.

Masonry, in fact, was not being persecuted by the authorities (La Politica de España en Filipinas, 15 January 1897). It is noteworthy that not one of the eleven condemned to death by firing squad was ascertained a Mason by the military court, which evidently did not care one way or the other, though some oral accounts say that Rev. Fr. Gabriel P. Prieto and Rev. Fr. Severino Diaz were given Masonic rites in Libmanan when their remains were brought back from Manila to Nueva Caceres. Juan Miguel, co-founder and Worshipful Master of Bicol Logia No. 64 with his fellow Worshipful Master Vicente Ursua, was set free by the military court on 29 December 1896. His being a member of the Craft, as Masons sometimes like to style themselves, never figured in his trial at all. Neither did it in the case of Ursua, though his wife Tecla Aureus had to wait for over a year more to nurse him back to health from the ordeal he underwent in Libmanan, Naga, Manila, and Fernando Poo penal island off the west coast of Africa where he was sent with others from Bicol on exile (Ursua and Meliton, op.cit.).

The paramilitary units like the Guardia Civil and the Spanish Volunteers had an added twist to the whips favored by the friars. Aside from punches, slaps, and gun threats, they specialized in hanging their suspects by the wrists for some time, then dropping them on the cement floor when the victims had nearly passed out. Eugenio Ocampo’s teenage son, Jose Ocampo, nearly lost his life on such a drop. Of sturdier constitution, Obras Publicas employee and musician Florencio Lerma was hanged by the arms for eight straight hours while his body was violently struck and jabbed with cudgels. When he was dropped down, he was then stretched out on his stomach atop a long bench, his hands and feet tied to it, and he was flayed until bits of his flesh peeled off. (Elias M. Ataviado, The Philippine Revolution in the Bicol Region).

And when they were not undergoing violent torture, they were kept shackled, in leg irons, or bound up with ropes, their elbows pressed together. There were more painful variations. According to Julian Hilarion Barrameda, arrested for “conspiracy to commit rebellion” with Pedro Badong,(“Don Julian H. Barrameda, de Baao, Camarines Sur”), he and Badong were subjected to physical restraint described as pinag pandogan. (Julian H. Barrameda, “Mi Eterno Calvario”). Roughly, the term means “being placed in the stocks.” The Spaniards had never gotten around to making European-style wooden stocks wherein a person to be punished is seated and has his feet (and hands, at times) placed inside holes cut on two opposing wooden boards which can be locked together so the person cannot move. In the domestic version, the person facing punishment is made to squat down on his haunches, a stout bamboo is placed behind his knees, and his arms are passed beneath the pole up to his elbows; the arms on either side of his body are then tightly bound together at the wrist. The position produces the most excruciating pain in minutes. A simpler version, equally indescribably agonizing, is to have the person being punished balled up the other way around: his wrists and ankles are bound up together behind him. Try it and get a first-hand taste of one of the many torments or martyrdoms those 72 men of Bicol suffered. The Bicol Martyrs of 1896 revisited

The paramilitary units like the Guardia Civil and the Spanish Volunteers had an added twist to the whips favored by the friars. Aside from punches, slaps, and gun threats, they specialized in hanging their suspects by the wrists for some time, then dropping them on the cement floor when the victims had nearly passed out. Eugenio Ocampo’s teenage son, Jose Ocampo, nearly lost his life on such a drop. Of sturdier constitution, Obras Publicas employee and musician Florencio Lerma was hanged by the arms for eight straight hours while his body was violently struck and jabbed with cudgels. When he was dropped down, he was then stretched out on his stomach atop a long bench, his hands and feet tied to it, and he was flayed until bits of his flesh peeled off. (Elias M. Ataviado, The Philippine Revolution in the Bicol Region).

And when they were not undergoing violent torture, they were kept shackled, in leg irons, or bound up with ropes, their elbows pressed together. There were more painful variations. According to Julian Hilarion Barrameda, arrested for “conspiracy to commit rebellion” with Pedro Badong,(“Don Julian H. Barrameda, de Baao, Camarines Sur”), he and Badong were subjected to physical restraint described as pinag pandogan. (Julian H. Barrameda, “Mi Eterno Calvario”). Roughly, the term means “being placed in the stocks.” The Spaniards had never gotten around to making European-style wooden stocks wherein a person to be punished is seated and has his feet (and hands, at times) placed inside holes cut on two opposing wooden boards which can be locked together so the person cannot move. In the domestic version, the person facing punishment is made to squat down on his haunches, a stout bamboo is placed behind his knees, and his arms are passed beneath the pole up to his elbows; the arms on either side of his body are then tightly bound together at the wrist. The position produces the most excruciating pain in minutes. A simpler version, equally indescribably agonizing, is to have the person being punished balled up the other way around: his wrists and ankles are bound up together behind him. Try it and get a first-hand taste of one of the many torments or martyrdoms those 72 men of Bicol suffered.

Here are the 72 whose travails in those dark months of 1896 individually and collectively lighted up the failings of colonialism and the all-consuming power of evil both personal and institutional. Only the barest of these victims’ personal circumstances are included. Gaps exist, thanks in large measure to a deviant educational system that has been devolving us into cultural catatonia. In the meantime, these informational gaps are stuffed with “DNA” (Data Not Available). Should you have in your possession any of those basic vital records, send them to the e-mail address beneath the by-line at the top of this article. Your information-sharing will be much appreciated.

Each one of the names that follows already belongs to history.

DOMINGO ABELLA Y ISAAC – Birth date: DNA; Birth place: Nueva Caceres (now Naga City); Parents: Manuel Abella and Bibiana Isaac; Spouse: Single at death; Place of arrest: Nueva Caceres; Date of arrest: 16 September 1896; Date of death: 4 January 1897, by firing squad in Bagumbayan Field at the Luneta. Other details: He was 31 years old, not 25, at the time of his death. His properties were confiscated on 11 November 1896. At his execution, he was hardly recognizable, had difficulty walking, and seemed to have aged overnight, apparently from the severe and violent abuse he had received.

MANUEL ABELLA Y PINZON – Birth date: c. 1836; Birth place: Catanauan, Tayabas (now Quezon Province); Parents: DNA; Spouse: Bibiana Isaac; Place of arrest: Nueva Caceres; Date of arrest: 16 September 1896; Date of death: 4 January 1897, by firing squad at the Luneta. Other details: Alternatively known as MANUEL RODESCADO Y SANTA ROSA. A millionaire, he was 60 years of age when executed.

The authorities confiscated his properties on 11 November 1896.

MARIANO ABELLA – Birth date: 25 September 1860; Birth place: Nueva Caceres; Parents: Manuel Abella and Bibiana Isaac; Spouse: Juana Imperial; Place of arrest: Nueva Caceres; Date of arrest: 16 September 1896; Date of death: DNA; he died of natural causes. Other details: Properties seized on 11 November 1896. Set free by the Spanish court in the summary trial on 29 December 1896. Appointed Ambos Camarines representative to the Malolos Congress, he was one of the 94 signatories in the Malolos Constitution of 1898. Three times governor of Camarines, in 1898, 1904, and 1907.

RAMON ABELLA Y ISAAC – Birth date: DNA; Birth place: Nueva Caceres; Spouse: Single at death; Parents: Manuel Abella and Bibiana Isaac; Place of arrest: Nueva Caceres; Date of arrest- 16 September 1986; Date of death: DNA. Other details: Exiled to Fernando Poo penal colony where he reportedly died. But according to fellow-exile General Ludovico Arejola, Abella died in Cartagena, Spain, after the general pardon to political exiles on 5 February 1898.

TORIBIO ABELLA – Birth date: DNA; Birth place: DNA; Parents: Manuel Abella and an unidentified woman; Spouse: DNA; Place of arrest: Nueva Caceres; Date of arrest: 6 October 1896; Date of death: DNA; he is believed to have died of natural causes. Other details: Tortured and imprisoned but later released by the authorities in a trial on 29 December 1898.

ISABELO AGUILAR – Birth date: DNA; Birth place: Libmanan, Camarines Sur; Spouse: DNA; Parents: DNA; Place of arrest: Nueva Caceres; Date of arrest: DNA; Date of death: DNA, but believed to have died of natural causes. Other details: First imprisoned and tortured in Nueva Caceres, then shipped off to the Bilibid Military Prison, Department of Political Prisoners, in Manila. Later on released, on 29 December 1896.

FRANCISCO ALVAREZ – Birth date: 13 June 1852; Birth place: Caramoan, Camarines Sur; Spouse: DNA; Parents: DNA; Place of arrest: Nueva Caceres; Date of arrest: 10 October 1896; Date of death: July 1925. Other details: Exiled to Fernando Poo, Africa. Pardoned and allowed to go home on 5 February 1898 upon the petition of the Colonia Reformista de Filipinas in Madrid, Spain. He became Juez de Paz of Nueva Caceres in 1901-1902 and the representative of the Third District of Ambos Camarines. He founded and managed the newspaper “La Paz” that circulated in Nueva Caceres.

MATEO ANTERO – Birth date: 1830; Birth place: Indan (now Vinzons), Camarines Norte. Spouse: Justa Ubalde of Viga, Catanduanes; Parents: Rev. Fr. Jose Frutos and Maria Barrios; Place of arrest: Libmanan, Camarines Sur; Date of arrest: 12 October 1896; Date of death: 30 December 1920, in Libmanan. Other details: He took his surname from his baptismal godfather. Subjected to torture in the parish house of Libmanan, subsequently in Nueva Caceres. Incarcerated in the Bilibid Military Prison; released for lack of evidence on 29 December 1896.

MARIANO ARANA Y VALENCIANO – Birth date: 14 April 1869; Birth place: Magarao, Camarines Sur; Spouse: First wife from Bombon, Camarines Sur, died during the cholera epidemic on the eighth month of marriage in 1882; his second wife, Paula Siguenza, came from Libon, Albay; Parents: Cleto Arana and Vicenta Valenciano; Place of arrest: Nueva Caceres; Date of arrest: DNA; Date of death: DNA; what is known only is that he died of malaria before the end of December 1897 in Fernando Poo penal island. Other details: From Nueva Caceres, he was taken in chains to Bilibid. He was sentenced to exile by a military court on 2 November 1896.

ANTONIO AREJOLA – Birth date: DNA; Birth place: Donsol, Sorsogon; Spouse: Emeteria Padilla (1st wife), Valenciana Prudente (2nd wife); Parents: DNA; Place of arrest: Nueva Caceres; Date of arrest: 10 October 1896; Date of death: 21 April 1926, in Pili, Camarines Sur. Other details: He was brought to the Casino Español, then was remanded to the Bilibid Military Prison where he underwent further physical suffering. Exiled to Fernando Poo, he was able to return to Nueva Caceres in October 1898.

LUDOVICO AREJOLA Y PADILLA – Birth date: 31 January 1861; Birth place: Nueva Caceres; Spouse: Teodora Imperial of Albay; Parents: Antonio Arejola and Emeteria Padilla; Place of arrest: Nueva Caceres; Date of arrest: 10 October 1896; Date of death: 21 May 1940. Other details: Tortured like others in Nueva Caceres. Sent to Bilibid by ship where he and his companions were kept in the ship’s hold filled with cattle, their bound feet trussed to their tied wrists. Returned to the Philippines from Fernando Poo, later became a brigadier general in the army of the Philippine Republic and directed the resistance in Camarines against the Americans during the Filipino-American War.

PEDRO BADONG – Birth date: DNA; Birth place: Baao, Camarines Sur; Spouse: DNA; Parents: DNA; Place of arrest: Baao; Date of arrest: 5 October 1896; Date of death: DNA. Other details: Tortured at the Tribunal in an attempt to make him confess about an alleged conspiracy to commit rebellion. Sent afterwards to the Nueva Caceres jail where he was subjected to more torments until his release.

MARIANO BAñAGA – Birth date: DNA; Birth place: Baao, Camarines S; Spouse: DNA; Place of arrest: Baao; Date of arrest: 3 October 1896; Date of death: DNA. Other details: Arrested with five others on that day, he was detained for 15 days, first in the basement of the San Francisco convent, then in the provincial jail. Charges were dropped later and he was allowed to go back home.

JULIAN H. BARRAMEDA Y BADILLA – Birth date: 11 January 1879; Birth place: Baao, Camarines Sur; Spouse: Engracia Camballa Babilonia (1st wife), Rosario Ballesteros (2nd wife); Parents: Hilarion Barrameda and Honorata Badilla; Place of arrest: Baao; Date of arrest: 5 October 1896; Date of death: 17 October 1946. Other details: When the revolution broke out in August 1896, he was taken out of the Seminario Conciliar in Nueva Caceres by his father. He was arrested on charges of being part of a conspiracy to commit rebellion. Immediately tortured in the Baao Tribunal, where he and Pedro Badong were pinandogan. Remanded to the Nueva Caceres provincial jail where he went through more vicious beatings until his release. Appointed Auxiliar del Delegado de Rentas in Baao by the Philippine Revolutionary Government in 1899. He helped organize the Baao Militia which fought with Col. Elias Angeles in the Battle of Agdangan, Baao, on 23 February 1900. Municipal President in 1910-1916, and 1931-1934; Board Member of the ProvincialGovernment of Camarines Sur 1922-1925 and was acting governor for three months.

NICOLAS BELTRAN – Birth date: DNA; Birth place: Baao, Camarines Sur; Spouse: DNA; Parents: DNA; Place of arrest: Baao; Date of arrest: 2 October 1896; Date of death: DNA. Other details: Like Bañaga, he received beatings while confined in the San Francisco convent basement, then in the Nueva Caceres provincial jail before he was released.

DOROTEO BONILLA – Birth date: DNA; Birth place: Baao, Camarines Sur; Spouse: DNA; Parents: DNA; Place of arrest: Baao; Date of arrest: 2 October 1896; Date of death: DNA. Other details: He was a cuadrillero (rural policeman). Arrested for alleged revolutionary activities, he suffered two weeks of violent physical interrogation at the San Francisco convent basement and the provincial jail.

PEDRO BONILO – Birth date: DNA; Birth place: DNA; Spouse: DNA; Place of arrest: Pueblo de Tabuco of Nueva Caceres; Date of arrest: 10 October 1896; Date of death: DNA. Other details: He was the mechanic-operator of Manuel Pardo’s rice mill at Balintawak Street in present-day Naga City. Severely tortured, he was forced to turn witness against some of those arrested. Allowed to go free by a military court in Manila on 29 December 1896, he asked for forgiveness from the victims. Variously recorded as Pedro Bonito and Pedro Benito.

RAMON CABESUDO – Birth date: DNA; Birth place: DNA; Spouse: DNA; Place of arrest: Daet, Camarines Norte (at that time a part of Ambos Camarines); Date of arrest: 16 September 1896; Date of death: DNA. Other details: He was said to be a Spanish-Filipino mestizo. Upon his arrest, he was brought to the Casino Español in Nueva Caceres with other Daeteños for more violent interrogation, thence shipped to the Bilibid Military Prison in Manila. He was released on 29 December 1896.

PONCIANO CAMINAR – Birth date: DNA; Birth place: DNA; Spouse: DNA; Place of arrest: Daet; Date of arrest: 16 September 1896; Date of death: DNA. Other details: Imprisoned in the Bilibid after being tortured in the ground floor of the Casino Español in Nueva Caceres. Released on 29 December 1896.

JOSE DESIDERIO – Birth date: DNA; Birth place: DNA; Spouse: DNA; Parents: DNA; Date of arrest: 10 October 1896; Place of arrest: Nueva Caceres; Date of death: DNA. Other details: Also recorded as Jose Desiderio Magulay. He was among the deportees to Fernando Poo in Africa. He was allowed to return to the Philippines on 5 February 1898.

PABLO DEL VILLAR – Birth date: 1865; Birth place: San Pascual Baylon, Masbate; Spouse: Rafaela Ojeda of Nueva Caceres; Parents: DNA; Place of arrest: Nueva Caceres; Date of arrest: DNA; Date of death: 14 November 1944. Other details: He was a Mason. His arrest led up to the Bilibid prison, from where he was released after the trial in Fort Santiago on 29 December 1986.

REV. FR. SEVERINO DIAZ Y LANUZA – Birth date: 8 November 1862; Birth place: Barrio Bulabog (now present-day Sorsogon City), Province of Sorsogon; Spouse: None, he was a Catholic priest; Parents: Andres Diaz and Faustina Lanuza; Date of arrest: 19 September 1896; Place of arrest: Cathedral parish house in Nueva Caceres; Date of death: 4 January 1897, in Bagumbayan Field at the Luneta, by firing squad. Other details: Following his torture in Nueva Caceres, he was taken by ship to Manila, bound in ropes like other prisoners. Physically and verbally maltreated in the convento of San Agustin in Intramuros before he was transferred to the Bilibid prison where he was incarcerated until his execution with ten other Bicolano prisoners. In Sorsogon, a barrio named Bontugan and called Montufar by the Spaniards, originally a part of the municipality of Bacon, was named Prieto-Diaz in his and Fr. Gabriel Prieto’s memory.

REV. FR. SEVERO ESTRADA Y ARROYO – Birth date: 1869; Birth place: Ligao, Albay; Spouse: None, he was a Catholic priest; Parents: Gregorio Estrada and Josefina Arroyo; Place of arrest: Cathedral parish house in Nueva Caceres; Date of arrest: 19 September 1896; Date of death: 16 January 1929. Other details: The inclusion of Fr. Estrada’s name in the statement Tomas Prieto was forced to sign under extreme duress resulted in the priest’s vicious treatment, initially by friars, both in San Francisco and in San Agustin, Manila. The intercession of Caceres Bishop Arsenio Campo came rather late: Fr. Estrada was released only on 19 May 1897. Fr. Estrada finally left the priesthood after a bitter exchange with the highhanded American bishop of Caceres, John McGinley. He was survived by his seven siblings, three males and four females.

LUDOVICO GUEVERA – Birth date: DNA; Birth place: Baao, Camarines Sur; Spouse: DNA; Parents: DNA; Place of arrest: Baao; Date of arrest: 2 October 1896; Date of death: DNA. Other details: Brought to Nueva Caceres, he suffered abuse at the hands of friars in the San Francisco convent basement, then in the provincial jail at the hands of civil and military authorities before he was allowed to go home.

JUAN GUEVARA – Birth date: DNA; Birth place: Baao, Camarines Sur; Spouse: DNA; Parents: DNA; Date of arrest: 2 October 1896; Place of arrest: Baao; Date of death: DNA. Other details: He was the Capitan Municipal of Baao at the time of his arrest, and was to the San Francisco convent’s basement where he underwent harsh physical and verbal abuse for 15 days, after which he was confined in the provincial jail of Nueva Caceres. He was eventually set free.

LEON HERNANDEZ Y ABENANTE – Birth date: 28 June 1858; Birth place: Libmanan, Camarines Sur; Spouse: Dolores Hernandez; Parents: Juan Hernandez and Maria Abenante; Place of arrest: Libmanan; Date of arrest: 6 October 1896; Date of death: 16 October 1896. Other details: A school teacher. He was arrested late at night at his home by Guardia Civil troops upon orders of Fray Jose Serrano, Libmanan parish priest. Whipped two hundred times like Vicente Ursua and Pable Perpetua, he was then made to walk from Libmanan to Nueva Caceres, arms bound tightly behind at the elbows. Detained and subjected to more physical torture in the basement of the San Francisco infirmary for two days, he was then transferred to the provincial jail where he expired after a week’s unceasing physical punishment. He was a Mason.

REV. FR. INOCENCIO HERRERA – Birth date: DNA; Birth place: Pateros, Rizal (now Pateros City); Spouse: None, he was a Catholic priest; Parents: DNA; Place of arrest: Cathedral parish house in Nueva Caceres; Date of arrest: 19 September 1896; Date of death: 4 January 1896, in Bagumbayan Field at the Luneta, by firing squad. Other details: After his arrest and intensive interrogation in Nueva Caceres, he was taken by ship to Manila. He stayed in the Bilibid Military Prison until the trial at the Cuartel de España on 29 December 1896 and his execution a week later.

EUSEBIO ISAAC – Birth date: DNA; Birth place: DNA; Parents: DNA; Spouse: DNA; Parents: DNA; Place of arrest: Nueva Caceres; Date of arrest: 10 October 1896; Date of death: DNA; he is believed to have died of natural causes. Other details: He was a property owner. He was sent to Bilibid where he suffered the same torments as others did. The trial on 29 December allowed him to go free.

CAMILO JACOB Y SOLEDAD – Birth date: 1856; Birth place:.Ligao, Albay. Spouse: Fabiana Sierra, whom he married on 11 February 1886; Parents: Egidio Jacob and Maria Soledad; Place of arrest: Lagonoy, Camarines Sur; Date of arrest: 10 October 1986; Date of death: 4 January 1897, in Bagumbayan Field at the Luneta, by firing squad. Other details: Formerly a corporal in the Guardia Civil in Manila, he put up a photographic studio in Nueva Caceres. Brought to the basement of the parish house in San Francisco, then transferred to for more torture at the Casino Español before being brought to the Cuartel de España in Intramuros where he was meted the death sentence with 10 others from Bicol on 29 December1896.

FLORENCIO LERMA – Birth date: 1861; Birth place: Quiapo, Manila; Spouse: Simeona Navoa; Date of arrest: 16 September 1896; Place of arrest: Pueblo de Naga (now partly Barangay Lerma in present Naga City); Date of death: 4 January 1897, in Bagumbayan Field in the Luneta, by firing squad. Other details: Taken to the Casino Español in Nueva Caceres where he was bound and pilloried (pinandogan), then to the Cuartel General of the Guardia Civil in the city. Because he was among the first to be arrested, friars, the military, and those in the judiciary took turns working him over in an effort to make him admit to their allegations. Struck with clubs while tied to a bench, he was reduced to a bloody pulp even before he was brought to Manila for more of the same torments before he was sentenced to death. His properties were confiscated on 11 November 1896, but even before that his personal properties, like those of Tomas Prieto and the Abellas, were looted by the arresting Spanish officers.

DIEGO LIñAN – Birth date: DNA; Birth place: DNA; Spouse: DNA; Parents: DNA; Date of arrest: 16 September 1896; Place of arrest: Daet, Camarines Norte; Date of death: DNA. Other details: A mestizo from Daet, the severely beaten Liñan was brought to the Casino Español in Nueva Caceres for more interrogation, then shipped to Manila. He was released by order of the War Council at the trial on 29 December 1896.

VALENTIN LIPANA – Birth date: 1865; Birth place: Cavite; Spouse: Milagros Pla; Date of arrest: 16 September 1896; Place of arrest: Daet, Camarines Norte; Date of death: Between 11 May 1898 and 12 September 1898. Other details: After his arrest and eventual release from the Bilibid prison on 29 December 1896, he was implicated in the 15 April 1898 revolt in Daet led by Ildefenso Moreno. The Spanish tribunal de cuchillo in Daet then sentenced him to execution and he was shot to death in a vacant lot in Daet.

GETULIO LOCSIN – Birth date: 1864; Birth place: Molo, Iloilo; Spouse: Aurea Julia Anson y Alsera; Parents: DNA; Date of arrest: 22 September 1896; Place of arrest: Daraga, Albay; Date of death: 20 July 1926 in Daraga, Albay. Other details: Upon his arrest, he was brought to and tortured in the Albay jail (now the site of the Albay Provincial Capitol) in an effort to make him admit to suspicions of revolutionary links. On 10 October, with other Albayanos and Fr. Gabriel Prieto, he was shipped to Manila and confined in the Bilibid prison. He was released on 24 March 1897.

GREGORIO LUYON – Birth date: DNA; Birth place: DNA; Spouse: DNA; Parents: DNA; Date of arrest: 16 September 1896; Place of arrest: Daet, Camarines Norte; Date of death: Between 11 May 1898 and 12 September 1898. Other details: Freed on 29 December 1896 after undergoing much torture, he was re-arrested as a suspect in the failed Moreno-led uprising in Daet in May 1898 and was subsequently executed. He was a Mason.

RAMON MARTINEZ – Birth date: DNA; Birth place: DNA; Spouse: DNA; Parents: DNA; Date of arrest: 10 October 1896; Place of arrest: Nueva Caceres; Date of death: DNA. Other details: Also listed as Ramon Marty. Set free from Bilibid on 29 Decmber 1896. He is said to have become an officer in the army led by General Ludovico Arejola in Camarines against the Americans in 1900-1901.

MARIANO MELGAREJO – Birth date: DNA; Birth place: Santa Cruz, Manila; Spouse: DNA; Parents: DNA; Date of arrest: 16 September 1896; Place of arrest: Nueva Caceres; Date of death: 4 January 1897, in Bagumbayan Field at the Luneta, by musketry. Other details: The arresting Spanish Volunteers brought him first to the provincial jail, then to the Casino Español, before shipping him off to Manila where he received his death sentence on 29 December 1896. His properties were confiscated.

CORNELIO MERCADO – Birth date: DNA; Birth place: San Fernando, Camarines Sur; Spouse: DNA; Parents: DNA; Date of arrest: 16 September 1896; Place of arrest: Pueblo de Naga (present-day areas of Misericordia and Lerma); Date of death: 4 January 1897, in Bagumbayan Field at the Luneta, by firing squad. Other details: Remanded to the Bilibid prison shortly after his arrest, he was sentenced to die by musketry on 29 December 1896. His properties were confiscated.

JUAN MIGUEL – Birth date: DNA; Birth place: DNA; Spouse: DNA; Parents: DNA; Date of arrest: DNA; Place of arrest: Libmanan, Camarines Sur; Date of death: DNA. Other details: A Mason, he was co-founder and Worshipful Master of Logia Bicol No. 64 in Libmanan. Masonry apparently had no bearing on his trial; he was released with others on 29 December 1896.

FELIPE MUNPONBANUA – Birth date: 3 August 1870; Birth place: Iriga, Camarines Sur (now Iriga City); Spouse: Raymunda Gonzales; Parents: Domingo Munponbanua and Martina Baroga; Date of arrest: 10 October 1896; Place of arrest: Nueva Caceres; Date of death: 25 July 1925 in Iriga. Other details: Upon his arrest he was thrown into the provincial jail in Nueva Caceres where he suffered severely; then he was transferred with other Bicolano detainees to the Bilibid prison where he remained until his release on 29 December 1896. During the Filipino-American War, he fought under General Ludovico Arejola.

EUSEBIO OCAMPO – Birth date: 1848; Birth place: Nueva Caceres; Spouse: Julia Oleta; Parents: DNA; Date of arrest: 10 October 1896; Place of arrest: Nueva Caceres; Date of death: 4 January 1906 in Nueva Caceres. Other details: On the same evening of his arrest, he was thrown into the basement of the parish house of San Francisco. A week after his violent interrogation, he was on the way for more torture in the Bilibid penitentiary aboard the vessel “Isarog” where he was fed spoiled rice in a chamber pot a Spanish guard had just relieved himself in. His family spent no inconsiderable sum of money for his release, which came about only with others on 29 December 1896.

JOSE OCAMPO Y OLETA – Birth date: DNA; Birth place: DNA; Spouse: DNA; Parents: Eugenio Ocampo and Julia Oleta; Date of arrest: 10 October 1896; Place of arrest: Nabua, Camarines Sur; Date of death: DNA. Other details: His arrest happened on the same day that his father, Eugenio Ocampo, was picked up by troops of the Guardia Civil. Tightly bound with ropes, the teenager was made to walk from Nabua to Nueva Caceres where he was brought to the provincial jail. His interrogators repeatedly hoisted him up with a rope; thence let him drop on the floor. In the words of Luis Ocampo, another son of Eugenio, the repeated drops nearly cost the teenaged Jose his life (“kadikit pang magadan” ). Jose grew up to become the provincial treasurer of Batangas.

MARIANO ORDENANZA – Birth date: DNA; Birth place: Pueblo de Naga; Spouse: DNA; Parents: DNA; Date of arrest: 16 September 1896; Place of arrest: Nueva Caceres; Date of death: DNA. Other details: Initially tortured in the Casino Español in Nueva Caceres, he was transferred to the Bilibid with other political prisoners. His properties were confiscated on 11 November 1896. The War Council on 29 December 1896 sentenced him to 20 years imprisonment. Some claim Ordenanza was shot. However, a document indicates that he was sent to prison in Spain where he is presumed to have died.

ADRIANO PAJARILLO – Birth date: DNA; Birth place: Daet, Camarines Norte; Spouse: DNA; Parents: DNA; Date of arrest: 16 September 1896; Place of arrest: Daet; Date of death: DNA. Other details: From Daet he was brought to the Casino Español in Nueva Caceres, then to Bilibid where he was detained until his release on 29 December 1896. He was a Mason.

ROMAN PAJARILLO – Birth date: DNA; Birth place: Daet, Camarines Norte; Spouse: DNA; Parents: DNA; Date of arrest: 16 September 1896; Place of arrest: Daet; Date of death: DNA. Other details: He went the same route as his fellow Daeteños until his release on 29 December 1896.

MANUEL PARDO – Birth date: DNA; Birth place: Madrid, Spain; Spouse: Antonia Cecilio, a Bicolana; Parents: DNA; Date of arrest: 10 October 1896; Place of arrest: Nueva Caceres; Date of death: 24 December 1913. Other details: Since Cuba by that time was in revolutionary ferment against Spain, some local Spaniards sought to discredit him by floating the canard that Pardo was a Cuban. It is also possible that some very prominent men in Nueva Caceres were eyeing Pardo’s substantial business and property holdings. Arrested in his house in Nueva Caceres fronting the present site of the Plaza Quince Martires, he was taken to the Nueva Caceres jail, then shipped to Bilibid on the same vessel that brought Eugenio Ocampo and other Bicolano prisoners to Manila. Unable to manufacture a credible case against him, the Spanish authorities let him go.

MANUEL PASTOR Y GALANG – Birth date: DNA; Birth place: Tondo, Manila; Spouse: Marciana de Pastor; Parents: Rafael Pastor and Margarita Galang; Date of arrest: 10 October 1896; Place of arrest: Pueblo de Tabuco (now Barangay Tabuco of Naga City); Date of death: DNA. Other details: He was Spanish-Filipino, his father being a Spaniard. From Casino Español for the obligatory interrogation, he was transferred to Manila and stayed in the Bilibid until his release on 29 December 1896.

SEVERO PATROCINIO – Birth date: 1856; Birth place: San Jose, Camarines Sur; Spouse: Irene Cecilio; Parents: Manuel Patrocinio and Juliana Mendoza; Date of arrest: 10 October 1896; Place of arrest: Nueva Caceres; Date of death: 1920. Other details: Arrested in the afternoon by Spanish Volunteers, he was brought first to the basement of the parish house of San Francisco church, then remanded to the Bilibid prison. Exiled to Fernando Poo, Africa, by order of the War Council on 2 November 1896. Pardoned on 5 February 1898, he arrived in Nueva Caceres in October of that year in the army of General Vicente Lucban. A medical graduate of the University of SantoTomas, he was once a good friend of the friars who gave him wide berth when he returned from exile. He had three daughters: Gloria Patrocinio de Cecilio, Irene Patrocinio de Imperial, and Dolores Patrocinio de Bongat.

FLORENTINO PEÑALOSA – Birth date: DNA; Birth place: DNA; Spouse: DNA; Parents: DNA; Date of arrest: 16 September 1896; Place of arrest: Daet, Camarines Norte; Date of death: DNA. Other details: Detained in Nueva Caceres and in the Bilibid prison, he was among those released by the War Council on 29 December 1896. He was a Mason.

JUAN PEREZ – Birth date: DNA; Birth place: DNA; Spouse: DNA; Parents: DNA; Date of arrest: 2 October1896; Place of arrest: Baao, Camarines Sur; Date of death: DNA. Other details: He was the Juez de Paz of Baao at the time of his arrest. After torture and imprisonment in Nueva Caceres, he was allowed to go home.

PABLO PERPETUA Y REYES – Birth date: 11 January 1853; Birth place: Concepcion, Libmanan, Camarines Sur; Spouse: Andrea Aureus; Parents: Rudecindo Perpetua and Josefa Reyes; Date of arrest: 6 October 1896; Place of arrest: Libmanan; Date of death: 1923. Other details: He was a Mason. Upon arrest he was first taken to the convento of the Libmanan church where he was lashed 200 times on orders of Fray Jose Serrano, the town parish priest. Made to walk to Nueva Caceres, he was brought to the San Francisco infirmary basement where he underwent more torture, then to the provincial jail for more of the same. He remained in jail for over two months, until his freedom was bought with monetary bribes.

JUAN PIMENTEL Y CAMPOS – Birth date: 28 December 1853; Birth place: Daet, Camarines Norte; Spouse: DNA; Parents: Ramon Pimentel and Pia Campos; Date of arrest: DNA; Place of arrest: Daet; Date of death: 14 August 1930. Other details: Released from prison on 29 December 1896. He became the first Filipino provincial governor of Ambos Camarines. He spearheaded the construction by Freemasons in Camarines Norte of the first memorial to Jose Rizal in 1898. The monument still stands.

REV. FR. GABRIEL PRIETO Y ANTONIO – Birth date: 11 January 1853; Birth place: Calle Padian, Nueva Caceres; Spouse: None, he was a Catholic priest; Parents: Dee Se Co (a Chinese baptized Marcos Prieto) and Juana Antonio; Date of arrest: 22 September 1896; Place of arrest: the parish house of the church in Malinao, Albay; Date of death: 4 January 1897, in Bagumbayan Field at the Luneta, by firing squad. Other details: Arrested upon orders of Albay Civil Governor Angel Bascaran, he was tortured before he was taken, in chains like other prisoners, to the San Agustin convent in Intramuros, Manila, where he and his companions were the object of more physical mayhem and indignities. Later, he was transferred to Bilibid where conditions were no better. On 29 December 1896, the War Council condemned him and ten others ordered his execution with 10 others from Bicol. Five days later, the sentence was carried out.

TOMAS PRIETO Y ANTONIO – Birth date: 18 September 1867; Birth place: Calle Padian. Nueva Caceres; Spouse: Filomena Pasion; Parents: Dee Se Co (a Chinese baptized Marcos Prieto) and Juana Antonio; Date of arrest: 16 September 1896; Place of arrest: Nueva Caceres, in his house at the corner of present-day Panganiban Drive and Peñafrancia Avenue; Date of death: 4 January 1897, in Bagumbayan Field at the Luneta, by firing squad. Other details: The younger brother of Rev. Fr. Gabriel A. Prieto, he was the frailest and the most emotionally vulnerable of those initially arrested. He was brought by Spanish Volunteers to the Cuartel General of the Guardia Civil in Nueva Caceres where he was immediately subjected to vicious blows and threats. Five days after unremitting torture he was forced to sign a prepared declaration that implicated himself and practically all those executed on 4 January 1897, including his own priest brother who had earlier earned the ire and enmity of the friars in the city. He finished pharmacy

in the University of Santo Tomas with consistent grades of sobresaliente. He was the acting alcalde (equivalent to today’s mayor) at the time of his arrest on strength of a warrant signed by Ambos Camarines Civil Governor Ricardo Lacosta and Judge of First Instance Rafael Morales. His properties were confiscated nearly two months before his (and the others’) trial on 29 December 1896.

MARGARITO RAGOS – Birth date: DNA; Birth place: DNA; Spouse: DNA; Parents: DNA; Date of arrest: 22 September 1896; Place of arrest: Albay; Date of death: DNA. Other details: From Albay he was brought to Manila and was incarcerated in the Bilibid, where he remained until he was allowed out of prison by the military court on 29 December 1896.

JUAN RAZONABLE – Birth date: DNA; Birth place: DNA; Spouse: DNA; Parents: DNA; Date of arrest: 6 October 1896; Place of arrest: Libmanan, Camarines Sur; Date of death: DNA. Other details: From his arrest in Libmanan, he went the route that included Nueva Caceres, then the Bilibid prison. In the summary trials on 29 December 1896, he was acquitted and released from the penitentiary.

GUIDO RECATO – Birth date: DNA; Birth place: DNA; Spouse: DNA; Parents: DNA; Date of arrest: 22 September 1896; Place of arrest: Albay; Date of death: DNA. Other details: About three weeks after his arrest and beatings in the Albay jail, he was brought on 10 October to Manila and held in the Bilibid prison to await trial at Fort Santiago. He was set free in the 29 December 1896 trial.

CELEDONIO REYES Y ROXAS – Birth date: 1837; Birth place: Pasacao, Camarines Sur; Spouse: Eusebia Jacinto of Manila (1st wife), and Fabiana Arejola de Mapa (2nd wife); Parents: Juan Reyes and Maria Roxas; Date of arrest: 10 October 1896; Place of arrest: Convento of the Libmanan church; Date of death: March 1921. Other details: Lured by the head of the Guardia Civil in Libmanan to the convento where he was nabbed; whipped at the foot of the convento stairs. Two days after, he was made to walk from the town to Nueva Caceres with Mateo Antero and Juan Razonable, who were taken with him to the basement of the San Francisco convento. The beatings with Razonable and Antero continued while they were in the Bilibid. On 29 December 1896, at the military trial in Fort Santiago, he was ordered released from detention.

LUIS ROMANO Y RANIN – Birth date: 1861; Birth place: Oas, Albay; Spouse: Susana Refe; Parents: Mariano Romano and Anacleta Ranin; Date of arrest: 22 September 1896; Place of arrest: Oas, Albay; Date of death: 1918. Other details: Brought to the Bilibid for further interrogation, where he was detained for five months. He was released from prison on 18 February 1897.

BENEDICTO SABATER – Birth date: DNA; Birth place: DNA; Spouse: DNA; Parents: DNA; Date of arrest: 10 October 1896; Place of arrest: Nueva Caceres; Date of death: DNA. Other details: From Nueva Caceres, he was brought with other political prisoners aboard the “Isarog,” then, the “Montañes.” Imprisoned in the Bilibid until 29 December 1896 when the War Council ordered him released. He became a colonel in the Philippine Army which came to Ambos Camarines under General Vicente Lucban.

AGUSTINO SAMSON – Birth date: DNA; Birth place: DNA; Spouse: DNA; Parents: Macario Samson (wife not known); Date of arrest: 22 September 1896; Place of arrest: Ligao, Albay; Date of death: DNA. Other details: Three weeks after his incarceration in the Bilibid from his detention in Albay, he was convicted by the War Council and sentenced to exile in the Spanish penal island of Fernando Poo off western Africa. He died of malaria in the island before the 5 February 1898 mass pardons. He had been a pharmacist in Ligao.

MACARIO SAMSON – Birth date: DNA; Birth place: DNA; Spouse: DNA; Parents: DNA; Date of arrest: 22 September 1896; Place of arrest: Camalig, Albay; Date of death: DNA. Other details: Former gobernadorcillo of Camalig and father pf Agustino Samson. He was likewise sent to Bilibid to await trial, and was sentenced to exile in Fernando Poo. He was taken to the island via Spain like other exiles, including his son Agustino, and had to endure deprivation and physical torments that every prisoner did while at sea and once in the place of exile. Unlike his son, he survived and was able to return to Albay following his pardon on 6 November 1897.

RAMON SANTOS – Birth date: DNA; Birth place: DNA; Spouse: DNA; Parents: DNA; Date of arrest: 22 September 1896; Place of arrest: Ligao, Albay; Date of death: DNA. Other details: He was a former gobernadorcillo of Ligao. Detained and harshly interrogated in Albay, he was subsequently transferred to the Bilibid prison. On 2 November 1896, he was sentenced by the military court to be deported to Jolo. He was able to return to his family in Ligao.

RUFINO SOLER – Birth date: DNA; Birth place: Tondo, Manila; Spouse: Luisa Narvaez of Cavite; Parents: DNA; Date of arrest: 22 September 1896; Place of arrest: Daraga, Albay; Date of death: 1910, in Daraga. Other details: He was twice gobernadorcillo of Daraga. Arrested by the Guardia Civil, he was thoroughly processed in Albay, then sent to the Bilibid. In the trial on 29 December 1896, he was sentenced to remain in the penitentiaty, but was released after a few months.

MARTIN UBALDO – Birth date: DNA; Birth place: Matnog, Sorsogon; Spouse: DNA; Parents: DNA; Date of arrest: DNA; Place of arrest: Matnog, Sorsogon; Date of death: DNA. Other details: He was detained at the Guardia Civil headquarters in Legazpi where he underwent severe physical punishment, then was transferred to Bilibid. He was sentenced to exile to Catbalogan, Samar, with his entire family.

VICENTE URSUA Y CAMPOS – Birth date: 1859; Birth place: Libmanan, Camarines Sur; Spouse: Tecla Aureus; Parents: Agaton Ursua and Isidora Campos; Date of arrest: 6 October 1896; Place of arrest: Libmanan; Date of death: 2 August 1926. Other details: Upon his arrest, he was immediately given the same treatment as his cousin, Leon Hernandez, and brother-in-law, Pablo Perpetua: 200 lashes at the foot of the convento stairs of the Libmanan church. Bound at the elbows, he and the two others were made to walk to Nueva Caceres where the three were held first at the San Francisco infirmary basement. After two days of torture, his two companions were thrown into the provincial jail while he remained detained in the basement. Brought to Manila, he was sentenced by the War Council to exile in Fernando Poo island. He was pardoned on 5 February and arrived in Nueva Caceres on 12 November of that year. He was appointed colonel in the Territorial Militia of Libmanan and fought in the bloody battle of Libmanan against the invading American forces on 20 February 1900. A Mason, he organized with Juan Miguel Logia Bicol No. 64 and became Worshipful Master under the name “Virgilio.”

TOMAS VALENCIANO Y FRANCISCO – Birth date: 1858; Birth place: Nueva Caceres; Spouse: Carmen Pimentel; Parents: Antonio Valenciano and Melchora Francisco; Date of arrest: 10 October 1896; Place of arrest: Nueva Caceres; Date of death: 1910. Other details: Initially held in the provincial jail in Nueva Caceres, he was transferred to the Bilibid after he had been beaten black and blue. Sent on exile in Fernando Poo by the War Council, he received a pardon on 5 February 1898 which allowed him to go home. Upon return he stayed in Daet where he became Presidente Municipal during the American regime.

MACARIO VALENTIN – Birth date: DNA; Birth place: Nueva Caceres; Spouse: DNA; Parents: DNA; Date of arrest: 16 September 1896; Place of arrest: Nueva Caceres; Date of death: 4 January 1897, in Bagumbayan Field at the Luneta, by firing squad. Other details: He was head of the serenos (night watchmen) of the city. Arrested by the Guardia Civil, he was brought to the Cuartel General for brutal interrogation. Transferred to the Cuartel de España in Manila where a forced confession was extracted from him through violent means. He was shot with ten other co-accused from Nueva Caceres five days after the execution of Jose Rizal. His properties like those of his fellow victims were confiscated on 11 November 1896, almost two months before he, like those martyred with him, had even had a court hear their case.

BONIFACIO VILLAREAL – Birth date: DNA; Birth place: DNA; Spouse: DNA; Parents: DNA; Date of arrest: 22 September 1896; Place of arrest: Albay; Date of death: DNA; he died of malaria while on exile in Fernando Poo. Other details: He was personally arrested by Major Carmelo Navarro, comandante of the Civil Guard force in Bicol and Southern Luzon. After his arrest and obligatory interrogation in Albay, he was transferred to Bilibid prison in Manila. Exiled to Fernando Poo as ordered by the War Council, he never was able to leave the hell island. He was a lawyer by profession.

ENRIQUE VILLAREAL – Birth date: DNA; Birth place: Guinobatan, Albay; Spouse: DNA; Parents: DNA; Date of arrest: 22 September 1896; Place of arrest: Guinobatan; Date of death: DNA. Other details: He was brought in shackles to Manila on 10 October 1896, together with others arrested in Albay. Exiled to Fernando Poo on 2 November 1896; the pardon of political prisoners on 5 February 1898 allowed him to return to his family in Albay. He was a school teacher.

ESTEBAN VILLAREAL Y CAMACHO – Birth date: 1862; Birth place: Nueva Caceres; Spouse: DNA; Parents: Gregorio Villareal and Maria Camacho; Date of arrest: 10 October 1896; Place of arrest: Nueva Caceres; Date of death: 4 September 1936. Other details: Thrown into the malodorous and oven-hot provincial jail where he suffered vicious beatings, he was eventually remanded to the Bilibid prison. On 2 November 1896, he was sent on exile to Fernando Poo where the Spanish government threw criminals and political prisoners alike. Pardoned on 5 February 1898, he was able to return to Nueva Caceres.

LUIS VILLAREAL – Birth date: DNA; Birth place: Albay; Spouse: DNA; Parents: DNA; Date of arrest: DNA; Place of arrest: DNA; Date of death: 11 January 1897, in Bagumbayan Field at the Luneta, by firing squad. Other details: He became a well-known tailor in Manila. A Mason, he was the Worshipful Master of Loge Taliba No. 165. He was the only Bicolano to die on the 11 January 1897 execution at the Luneta.

PEDRO ZENAROSA – Birth date: DNA; Birth place: DNA; Spouse: DNA; Parents: DNA; Date of arrest: 16 September 11896; Place of arrest: Daet, Camarines Norte; Date of death: DNA. Other details: From Daet he was brought to Nueva Caceres where he suffered more brutal treatment, before he was imprisoned in the Bilibid. He was set free on 29 December 1896 for lack of evidence against him.

References:

Abella, Domingo. Bikol Annals Vol. I. The See of Caceres. Manila, 1954.

Artigas y Cuerva Manuel. Galeria de Filipinos Ilustres. Manila: Renacimiento Elezado, 1917.

Ataviado, Elias M. The Philippine Revolution in the Bicol Region Vol. 1. Tranls. Juan T. Ataviado, Quezon City: New Day Publishers. 1999.

Barrameda Jr., Jose V. “ A Filipino-Chinese Martyr.” Encounter, January 1989.

_________________. “The Filipino Martyrs from Kabikolan.” Encounter, January 1989.

Barrameda, Julian Hilarion. “Don Julian H. Barrameda, de Baao, Camarines Sur.” 1938. Typescript.

__________________. “Mi Eterno Calvario.” 1938. Typescript.

Dato, Luis G. “Of Baao Secular and Idyllic Town of Our Birth.” Baao Fiesta Souvenir Program, 1952.

Gomez, Marcos. La Revolucion en la Provincia de Ambos Camarines. Ed. Apolinar Pastrana Riol. Manila: Regal Printing Co., 1980.

Scott, William Henry. “The Nine Clergy of Nueva Segovia.” Philippine Social Sciences and Humanities Review. 1979.

Soriano, Evelyn Caldera. Bicolano Revolutionaries. Manila: National Commission for Culture and the Arts, 1999.

Ursua, Jacinto and Ignacio Meliton. “Martires Bicolanos: Un Episodio de la Revolucion del ’96.” 1943. Typescript

Ursua, Vicente. “Memoirs of the Revolution of 1896.” Translator unknown. N.d. Typescript..

Copy of the 1940 invitation to the commemoration of the death of the Fifteen Martyrs of Camarines Sur (Barrameda Collection).

Bureau of Education Celedonio Salvador officially made execution of the Bicol Martyrs part of the Perpetual Index of significant events in Philippine history on February 20, 1940.

Enhanced photo of Bicolano prisoners in Fort Santiago in 1896 (La Illustracion Española Y Americana 1897 / Barrameda Collection).

Torture of the Bicolano Martyrs in the Franciscan basement in Nueva Caceres.

Families consoling the martyrs in their dungeon, 1896 (Michael Dexter Bertumen / Barrameda Collection)

2 Comments

  1. ferdi zantuaApr 27, 2012 at 12:30 pm

    mabuhay quince martires!

  2. tina villanuevaJul 3, 2012 at 3:46 am

    The Bicol Martyrs of 1896 revisited: This is a big help for a BICOL HISTORY teacher like me. Thanks Bicol Mail!


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  • Theanna: What happened to the news bits under this picture? View Post
  • Theanna: Thanks for the above concerns. I thought I was the only one who sensed something odd, since I read the news printed under the Business section on Nov.15. I posted a comment, after much deliberation, on Nov. 17 re the offensive word in the headline. My simple arithmetic doesn't add up to the expected results of this huge 3billion peso project. I feel like the child in Hans Christian Andersen's story of "The Emperor's New Clothes". I can't figure out how the people there can generate 100 tons of garbage a day. View Post
  • ariston: FAMILY VALUES ENHANCEMENT,PROGRAMA NI LRAY VILLAFUERTE,DIOS MIO,KADAKUL NA FAMILYA ANG NAGTITIOS ,NAGUGUTOM SA MGA ORAS NA INI TA HINALI NIYA SA TRABAHO,MAGBUNGKARAS KITA MGA CAMARINENSIS,ANG PROGRAMANG INI HURI NANG MARAY. View Post
  • alejandro: ano an sanglit? View Post
  • alejandro: tukdoan tang magnoronegosyo sagkod magtipon an mga pinapadarahan kan mga OFW. bakong dalagan tulos sa mcdonald. pagpuli kan OFW, otot. sibot na naman magbuwelta ta mayo na naman nin kuwarta. View Post
  • Pastor Dan: Can we rely on the government to be able to address the perennial problem of hunger and malnutrition among marginalized children ? Your guess is as good as mine... I just thought we could be more introspective with the developmental role of privately funded NGOs. The NGOs can play a crucial role in addressing this issue... more so if the present dispensation manifest some tangible support for them... View Post
  • Engr. Efren Rempola: Tama ka dyan, Manoy Joel, bako man si Fortuno o si Aga Muhlach an mabugtak saimo sa Kapitolyo tangaring ibalik mo sa mga taga-Camarines Sur an harong na ini. Kun talagang habo saimo ni Aga, sa cuarto distrito, yaon baga si dating Cong. Wimpy Fuentebella asin an mga Alcalde na supotado ki Spkr Noli Fuentebella. Dae naman yan ma-iriba ki Gurang na Villafuerte ta aram naman ninda na drama man sana an labanan kan mag-amang Luis asin L-Ray. Sa quinto distrito (Rinconada), Manoy Joel, yaon baga si dating Cong Nancing Alfelor. Aram man sana kan gabos na Rinconada na iyo ini an tunay na LP bakong si Fortuno. Dae naman pati yan ma-iriba ki Gurang na Villafuerte nin huli ta bistado na an iwal-mag-ama na sarong pakitang-tao lang tangaring sinda-sinda na sana an maglaban sa eleccion, eh, ngonyan yaon ka dyan Manoy, dikit na sacripisyo na lang, hahalion na an mag-ama asin ma-ibabalik na an Kapitolyo sa mga tao. View Post
  • Winston Cigarettes Website: Very nice article, just what I needed. View Post
  • traqy: Wow! This will bring longterm economic opportunity to Naga City. Thus, the city will be more self-reliant and self-sustainable as power supply will be rarely disrupt even in times of natural disaster. More BPOs might operate in the city as the confidence on power supply is high. Good work Mayor John Bongat! View Post
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