The Philippine Republic

Jan. 23, 1899: Inauguration of the First Philippine Republic

Inauguration 1st Philippine republic, Malolos Jan 23 1899

Filipino soldiers at Malolos after Republic Proclamation Jan 23 1899

aguinaldo arrival at malolos jan 23 1899_edited

Aguinaldo in December 1898

On Jan. 23, 1899, the First Philippine Republic, popularly known as the Malolos Republic, was inaugurated amidst colorful ceremonies at the Barasoain Church, Malolos, Bulacan Province. This was also the first republic in Asia. Aguinaldo took his oath of office as President of the Republic. He stated the aspiration of the nation “to live under the democratic regime of the Philippine Republic, free from the yoke of any foreign domination.” In conclusion, he declared: “Great is this day, glorious this date, and forever memorable this moment in which our beloved people are raised to the apotheosis of Independence.”

To make the event more memorable, Aguinaldo issued a decree granting pardon to all Spanish prisoners of war who were not members of the Spanish regular army and at the same time, granting to Spaniards and other aliens the right to engage in business within the limits of the Republic.

Aguinaldo wore a formal attire with top hat, white gloves, and bow tie and carried a tasseled gold-knobbed cane.

The food at the inaugural banquet was European and the menu written in French.

Aguinaldo entourage entering Barasoain Church, Jan 23 1899
Aguinaldo’s entourage enters Barasoain Church
Philippine Army in Malolos Plaza
Philippine army soldiers at the plaza in Malolos
Malolos inauguration of Republic Jan 23 99
The residents of Malolos and guests celebrate the inauguration of the First Philippine Republic

Republic of the Philippines

Republic of Philippines text 1

Republic of Philippines, text 2

Insurgent effrontery TT Jan 23 1899

Insurgent effrontery, text 1

Insurgent effrontery, text 2

Sixto Lopez n Felipe Agoncillo 1898
Jose “Sixto” Lopez (LEFT) and Felipe Agoncillo (RIGHT), Philippine ambassadors to the United States. Agoncillo was commissioned as Minister Plenipotentiary to negotiate treaties with foreign governments. PHOTO was taken in 1898.

Meanwhile, in the United States, Ambassador Felipe Agoncillo appealed to the U.S. Senate where the Philippine question was being debated.

Manila situation serious

Manila situation, text 1

Manila situation, text 2

Agoncillo statement 1,The Scranton Tribune Jan 25, 1899 Page 1

Agoncillo statement 2,The Scranton Tribune Jan 25, 1899 Page 1

Agoncillo statement 3,The Scranton Tribune Jan 25, 1899 Page 1
The Scranton Tribune, Scranton, Pennsylvania, Jan. 25, 1899 Page 1

Agoncillo vain struggle to get recognition, SFC Jan 27 1899
The San Francisco Call, issue of Jan. 27, 1899

Agoncillo the spy, TT Jan 27 1899

Agoncillo the spy text 1

Agoncillo the spy, text 2

Agoncillo the spy, text 3

Agoncillo the spy, text 4

The San Francisco Call, issue of Jan. 29, 1899

Disposition of Philippines, TRU Jan 31 1899

Disposition of Philippines, text 1

Disposition of Philippines, text 2

Agoncillo wrote a memorial addressed to the US Senators on January 30, reminding them to follow the precedents of their own country of recognizing the right of all nations to be free and to create and reform their own political institutions.

Juan Luna Ferdinand Blumentritt Felipe Agoncillo at Litomerice Czech. 1899
Juan Luna (LEFT), the Filipino painter, and Felipe Agoncillo (RIGHT) visiting Ferdinand Blumentritt, the Austrian teacher, historian, and ethnologist and close friend of the Philippine national hero Jose Rizal, at Litomerice, Austria-Hungary, in 1899. [Litomerice is now a part of the Czech Republic].
[When the Philippine-American War broke out on Feb. 4, 1899, which affected the decision of the US Senate to ratify the Paris peace treaty that ceded the Philippines to the Americans, Agoncillo moved to Canada. From there, he sailed to London, where he resumed his diplomatic activities and continued bringing into public knowledge about the newly born Filipino nation in the Far East that was struggling from American domination. When his funds ran out, he sold his wife’s jewelry and resumed his work.]

Malolos Filipino govt capitol 1899
Capitol of the First Philippine Republic at Malolos. Photo taken in 1899.
Stamps of the 1st Philippine republic
Source: The San Francisco Call, Sept. 24, 1899 Page 27
Banknote First Philippine Republic April 1899
A bank note issued by the First Philippine Republic on April 21, 1899. The symbol used for the Peso was the same as for the US dollar.
El Heraldo de la Revolucion Jan 22 1899
Issue dated Jan. 22, 1899. The Voice of the Philippine Revolution (1899). In the wake of Commo. George Dewey’s destruction of Spain’s Pacific Fleet in Manila Bay on May 1, 1898, Emilio Aguinaldo declared the independence of the Philippines on June 12, 1898. El Heraldo de la Revoluci�n began semiweekly publication in September, continuing until fighting broke out between the Americans and Filipino forces on February 4, 1899
A waterway in Malolos 1898 underwood
Original caption: “A Waterway of Aguinaldo’s Capital, Malolos, Philippine Islands”. Photo was taken in 1898.

Tagalo Beauty 1899

School Begins Jan 25 1899 Puck Magazine

[Description from

Caricature showing Uncle Sam lecturing four children labelled Philippines (who appears similar to Philippine leader Emilio Aguinaldo), Hawaii, Porto Rico and Cuba in front of children holding books labelled with various U.S. states. In the background are an American Indian holding a book upside down, a Chinese boy at door, and a black boy cleaning a window. Originally published on p. 8-9 of the January 25, 1899 issue of Puck magazine.

Caption: “School Begins. Uncle Sam (to his new class in Civilization): Now, children, you’ve got to learn these lessons whether you want to or not! But just take a look at the class ahead of you, and remember that, in a little while, you will feel as glad to be here as they are!”

Blackboard: The consent of the governed is a good thing in theory, but very rare in fact. � England has governed her colonies whether they consented or not. By not waiting for their consent she has greatly advanced the world’s civilization. � The U.S. must govern its new territories with or without their consent until they can govern themselves.

Poster: The Confederated States refused their consent to be governed, but the Union was preserved without their consent.

Book: U.S. � First Lessons in Self Government

Note: (on table) The new class � Philippines Cuba Hawaii Porto Rico]

Agoncillo gets saucy
Issue of Feb. 3, 1899

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Agoncillo gets saucy text 2