Museo ng Katipunan / The Katipunan Museum

The Nakpil-Bautista house honors the revolutionary society called the Katipunan with a permanent exhibit located in two rooms.

Dambana ng mga Bayani/ The Shrine of Heroes

Key figures during the 1896-1897 Revolution against Spain were Andres Bonifacio, Julio Nakpil and Gregoria de Jesus. As the second wife of Andres Bonifacio, she helped organized the women’s chapter in the secret society called the “Katipunan” (literally the Organization). She hid documents, revolvers and the seal under her voluminous skirt and wandered about in a carriage during raids on their house. Later on she joined her husband in the battlefield, alternately cooking for all and aiming a gun from the trenches.

After Bonifacio was executed in Cavite because of a power struggle in the Revolution, she met once again Julio Nakpil, whom she had known in the Katipunan. He was a pianist and composer who had joined the Revolution. Before Bonifacio left the Manila battlefront for Cavite, he appointed Nakpil the Second Presiding Supremo of the Katipunan. After Julio met Gregoria, he offered her his protection. They fell in love and were married at Quiapo church. Later on they were invited to move into this house by the childless couple Dr. Ariston Bautista Lin and his wife, Petrona Nakpil, who was Julio’s sister. They lived in the entresuelo (mezzanine) at the landing of the grand staircase. Their children were Juan (National Artist for Architecture), Julia, Josefina, Francisca, Mercedes and Caridad. Gregoria loved to fish from her window when the stream below was still clean. She became famous because of her prowess in the kitchen. And she loved her coffee. Her pet parrot would tease her every morning, “Goria, kape, kape!” (Gregoria, coffee, coffee!).

Gregoria’s life is commemorated in three paintings by Alfredo Esquillo. On one wall are her ten words of advice to her countrymen. One of them is, “Be afraid of History because it unearths everything.” In front of another wall is a portrait of Julio Nakpil. There are plans to play his music regularly. He composed gracious habaneras such as Recuerdos de Capiz (Souvenirs of Capiz) which Air Vietnam used to play for some years in its promotional. and martial music. He also sought to inspire his fellow revolutionaries with pieces such as Marangal na Dalit ng Katagalugan (The Great Hymn of the Tagalogs). Had Bonifacio won, this would have become the Philippines’ national anthem.

Opposite these paintings are pictures of Andres Bonifacio and Julio Nakpil.

Ang Salas at ang Kwarto ni Dr. Bautista/ The Living Room and Bedroom of Dr. Bautista

Dr. Bautista stayed at the northeast corner of the house overlooking Calle Escaldo, Then there was a pretty little garden park that was owned by the government. For some reason, the park disappeared in the 1970s. Eventually a police station was built on it along with a nursery. The room has now been opened to the public, along with the living room.

A reproduction of Juan Luna’s “Interior of a Parisian café” hangs on the southern wall of the living room. The original now hangs at the GSIS Museum. It used to be located on this exact spot. The three gentlemen are Juan Luna, Jose Rizal and Ariston Bautista-Lin. The painting was done in 1892 a little before Rizal left for the Philippines for good.

After Rizal landed in Manila in 1892, he organized the Liga Filipina (Filipino League), an organization that would work for social reforms in a peaceful manner. At the meeting at the house of Doroteo Ongjungco in Tondo, Manila, present were Apolinario Mabini, Andres Bonifacio and Francisco Nakpil, brother of Julio. Three of the chairs in that house were donated by the Ongjungco to this museum. But Rizal was deported to Mindanao. The road was now open to an armed revolution.

Ang Kartilya ng Katipunan/ The Katipunan’s Charter

Emilio Jacinto was the Katipunan’s thinker. To make the movement’s vision understandable, he wrote fourteen prescriptions. Some of the more notable are:

  1. A life not given to a worthy cause is like a tree with no shade;
  2. Be a person dark or fair, all are equal regardless of wealth, learning or beauty; and
  3. Never regard a woman as an object to amuse yourself with. Regard her rather as a partner and helpmate.

These are dramatized in medallions designed and made by Joey Ong. They are located in two vitrines designed by Mark Mallari Nakpil-De Lange. Oculi over two doors -These commemorate:

  1. The Women in the Katipunan; and
  2. Music in the Revolution. Women cooked and fought. A band played as the warriors went to battle.

Two chests-of-drawers by Patrick Kozelka Nakpil-De Lange – They have pull-out drawers and doors that reveal different aspects of the Katipunan.

  1. The initiation rituals with skull, pen, a knife for drawing blood for a blood-pact and a set of questions;
  2. Bonifacio’s plan to encircle the Walled City of Manila;
  3. His fallback strategy of conducting guerrilla warfare in the heavily forested hills that are now Quezon City, San Juan, Mandaluyong and the mountains of Pasig (like Ugong);
  4. The Cry of Freedom that resulted in the tearing of the cedula or tax receipt;
  5. Protective amulets;
  6. The organizational set-up of the Katipunan which was built around triads;
  7. The leadership of the Katipunan;
  8. The membership which draw in Filipinos from all levels of society;
  9. Tortures inflicted by the authorities on Katipuneros; and
  10. The Katipunan’s vision of a society where all sit together, regardless of race or creed.

The various paintings of Katipuneros were made by the group called Kompas and were donated to the Nakpil-Bautista Museum.

A cabinet situates the pivotal role of the Philippine Revolution of 1896 in universal history. It drew its inspiration from the American Revolution of 1776 and the French Revolution of 1789. Both sought a democratic order where ordinary people could choose their leaders. Also influential were the Latin American Revolutions against Spain during the early 19th century. After the Philippine Revolution came revolutions in Asia which were not only anti-colonial but also pro-democratic. According to the historian, Benito Legarda y Fernandez: “The Philippine Revolution was the last of the Latin American revolutions and the first of the Asian revolutions.”

Related topics: Articles, heroes, katipunan, revolution

2 Responses to “Museo ng Katipunan / The Katipunan Museum”

  1. By patrick javier on Jan 25, 2012

    tnx po sa info we are having field trip on this museum this jan 28 2012 manuel luis quezon hisg school are excited to go to your museum hehe kitakitz

  2. By Danilo V. Donor on Jan 8, 2013

    Dalawang beses na akong makapunta sa Museo.Ito lang ba ang mag-iisang museo na para sa K.K.K.?

    Nangangailangan ang bayan ng mga katulad nito,May bahay si Rizal sa Laguna, Mabini sa Nagtahan at Aguinaldo sa Kawit,Bakit walang malaking Bonifacio-KKK Museum -Library para sa mga tunay na nagpasimula ng Himagsikan ?

    Maigi at may Bahay Nakpil-Bautista na nagwawagayway ng bandila ng Katipunan.

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