Principal Events From May Until the Arrival of Aguinaldo in Biyak-na-Bato (San Miguel de Mayumo, Bulacan).
—In the beginning of May,1 Andres Bonifacio gathered his adherents and forces in the barrio of Limbon (Indang) preparatory to leaving Cavite province and going to the mountains of San Mateo (Manila province) and Bulacan. While he was awaiting all the Katipuneros and his soldiers who had followed him into Cavite territory, and pending the return of the scouts who had gone ahead to explore the road by which he intended to travel, many of the principal men of Indang, among them Severino de las Alas and Colonel Jose Coronel, presented to Emilio Aguinaldo several complaints against Bonifacio. Among these charges, were the following:
- That Andres Bonifacio had been paid by the friars to organize the Katipunan and to send forth unarmed Filipinos into a struggle against the Spanish government which possessed everything necessary for a harsh campaign.
- That Andres Bonifacio had ordered his men to burn the church and convent of Indang should the Spaniards capture the town.
- That Andres Bonifacio’s men stole carabaos and other work animals by force and killed them for food.
- That Andres Bonifacio had misspent all the funds of the Katipunan.
- That Andres Bonifacio intended to surrender with all his men to the Spaniards.
When the President of the Philippine Republic received these charges, he immediately sent Colonels Agapito Bonson and Jose Ignacio Paua with all their forces to Limbon. On arrival there, they found Andres Bonifacio and asked him where he was going. He replied that he was leaving for Silang on a reconnaissance, and thus they parted and each continued his way, Bonson and Paua being followed by Lieutenant-Colonel Julian Montalan who, on arrival at Banaybanay (Amadeo), returned post haste to Indang. On the following morning, Bonson and Paua returned and began to fire into the troops of the Supremo who were on guard at the end of the Limbon pass. They killed Ciriaco Bonifacio, the eldest brother of Andres, and threw themselves on Bonifacio’s forces, immediately disarming them.
Andres Bonifacio, hearing the shots and followed by his younger brother Procopio, Alejandro Santiago, Francisco Car-reon, Apolinario Sanson, Antonio Guevarra and others,2 ran toward his soldiers. As they approached the place, the forces of Bonson and Paua sprang upon them. Bonson fired his revolver at Bonifacio, wounding him in the left arm, and Paua, with an unsheathed dagger in his hand, also sprang at him, striking him in the left side of the neck. Paua was about to stab Bonifacio again but Alejandro Santiago threw himself upon Paua and grappling with him shouted: “Kill me, not him!” They then placed Andres Bonifacio in a hammock and set out for Indang, taking all the men prisoners, including Procopio, well bound, Francisco Carreon, Arsenio Mauricio and a certain young student named Leon, who afterwards became Vibora’s adjutant, and others whose names I do not remember. All the prisoners, except Procopio and Andres Bonifacio, were enclosed in a dark cell and only fed twice during the three days they were held prisoners. The council appointed to investigate the above charges against Andres Bonifacio and his brother Procopio rendered a decision imposing death upon them.
Some days after what had happened to Andres Bonifacio in Limbon, Naik was taken by the Spaniards in spite of the heroic defense made by the insurgents, who retired toward Maragondon. Indang was also taken with very little resistance for want of ammunition, and the insurgents moved to the barrio of Daim, Indang, which was transformed into a Kati-punan town and called Labong in honor of Mariano Trias Closas, who was known in the Katipunan by that name. From there, they moved to Kayti1>mga Iwhich, also converted into a Katipunan town, was called Mainam, in honor of the president of the provincial council of Magdiwang, known in the Katipunan as Mainam. Many such places that were barrios prior to the Cavite insurrection were converted into towns like the two above-mentioned because they had a large number of inhabitants; thus the barrio of Buenavista (San Francisco de Malabon) was called Katipunan in honor of the Minister of Finance of Magdiwang, Diego Mojica, who used that symbolic name; the barrio of Aliang (Santa Cruz de Malabon) was named in honor of the Minister of War of Magdiwang with his symbolic name Kamputput, and in the same way Binakayan (Cavite Viejo) was called Bacay.
While the government of the Philippine Republic was in Maragondon, Feliciano Jocson arrived. From the plaza of the convent he shouted, “Long live the liberty of the Philippines!” To encourage the people, he said, among other things, that very soon the arms he had purchased in Hongkong would arrive, and that with a little more resistance the triumph of the insurrection was very sure. At his petition, Emilio Aguinaldo gave written authority to establish in the central provinces of Luzon a government known as the “Gobierno Departamental de las Siete Provincias en el Centro de Luzon.” The provinces included in this departmental government were: Tayabas, Laguna de Bay, Morong, Manila, Bulacan, Nueva Ecija, and Bataan.
The departmental government had the same officials as the government of the Philippine Republic and among the persons who occupied important positions therein were:
- Dr. Anastacio Francisco, Vice-President
- Feliciano Jocson, Director of the Interior
- Teodoro Gonzales
- Cipriano Pacheco
- Antonio Montenegro, Governor of the Province of Manila
- Paciano Rizal, Governor of La Laguna
- Severino Taeno, Brigadier General, a detachment of whose forces were under strict orders of a woman.
This woman, Agueda Kahabagan, was known during the revolution as Generala Agueda, as in truth she was given this military commission by Miguel Malvar, commanding general of the forces of the departmental government of Batangas.
Lieutenant-General Mamerto Natividad was appointed by the said departmental government to command all its forces and was known as the Commanding General of Central Luzon. Under his orders were the following Generals:
Mariano Llanera, Lieutenant General, and his son Eduardo, a Colonel; Isidro Torres, Lieutenant General, and Gregorio del Pilar, Lieutenant Colonel; Manuel Tinio, Francisco Macabulos, Simeon Tecson, and one Cabiling, Brigadier Generals. The departmental government, as a consequence of the constitution prepared by Isabelo Artacho, was abolished during the last days of November 1897 and Antonio Montenegro became the Director of State as the result of the death of Jacinto Lum-breras, and from that time Isabelo Artacho occupied the position of Director of the Interior in place of Pascual Alvarez, who became head of the war department of the Philippine Republic.
Toward the end of May, Maragondon was taken by the Spaniards. In its plaza was waged one of the fiercest battles, so much so that had not all the ammunition of the insurgents, who had made a stand in the church square, been used up, the government of the Republic would not have been compelled to flee to the mountains between Maragondon and Looc, Batangas.
A few days after the taking of Maragondon, the towns of Alfonso, Mendez Nunez and Amadeo were retaken by the Spaniards, the rebels offering slight resistance for lack of ammunition. In the last named town, in a short encounter at Barroso Pass, Major Florencio (Enciong) de la Vina was killed.
Execution of the brothers Andres and Procopio Bonifacio.—While the government of the Philippine Republic was established in Buntis, one of the most wooded and rocky mountains between Maragondon and Looc, Emilio Aguinaldo, probably to get rid of his already fallen rival, who was covered with wounds which were almost in a state of putrefaction for lack of medicine and attention, ordered the execution, first of Procopio Bonifacio and then of Andres who, because of his wounds, was carried in a hammock to the place where his brother Procopio, two hours before, had been executed by Colonels Bonson and Paua.3 These two, it will be remembered, were those who had captured the Bonifacios in Limbon, In-dang. Thus ended the life of the man who, scorning dangers, had established the K. K. K. nang mga A. nang B.; the man who had taught the Filipino people the true way to shake off the Spanish yoke; the man from whose mouth, and whenever he spoke with the officials of the forces, always came the following expressions:
“Commit no acts that will cast a stain upon your name.”
“Fear history, for in it none of your acts can be hidden!”
Worthy of mention here also are the names of those who inspired Emilio Aguinaldo to make up his mind to thus execute the two Bonifacios; they were the following: Feliciano Jocson, Antonio Montenegro, Teodoro Gonzales, Clemente Jose Zulueta, Severino de las Alas, Baldomero Aguinaldo, Mariano Trias Closas and many others of the province of Cavite.1 These men had endeavored to win favor with Emilio Aguinaldo who, by means of his spies, had discovered the alliance between Andres Bonifacio and Brigadier-General Santos No-con of Magdiwang, to combat the plot of those of Magdalo against the Supreme President of the Katipunan, expressed very clearly in the Tejeros Assembly and in the Convent of Santa Cruz de Malabon, as a result of which when the Philippine Republic was established in Naik, Emilio Aguinaldo declined to recognize the military rank of Santos Nocon in spite of the brilliant service he had already rendered, nor did he give Nocon any other position despite his ardent patriotism; as happened also to Santiago Alvarez, Diego Mojica, Ariston Villanueva, Antonio Virata, Arcadio Arayata, Nicolas Portilla and many others, all of whom, true to the cause, remained in the forests and mountains, suffering misfortunes of all kinds during the insurrection.
1 This took place during the last week of April.
2 Many of these men became notorious as outlaw leaders.
3 An error; for the unpleasant task fell on Major Lazaro Makapagal.