Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Lakbay Jose Rizal @ 150 Trail: Paco Park

by: Mhe-anne L. Ojeda
Date: May 8, 2012
Location: San Marcelino and General Luna Streets , Paco, Manila
Rizal @ 150 Stamp No. 10 - Paco Cemetery 
Rizal's remains were secretly interred in the Paco Cemetery. They were guarded for fifteen days by the Guardia Civil Veterana. His remains were exhumed on August 17, 1898, placed in an urn and deposited in the Rizal Residence in Estrada Street, Manila. 

Paco Park housed a recreational garden  consisting of 4,114.80 square meter and a circular shaped- Roman Catholic chapel dedicated to St. PancratiusThe park is open Monday to Sunday (except on Wednesday) from 8:00AM to 5:00PM and every Friday by sunset and made popular by the weekly evening of classical and traditional Filipino music performances called "Paco Park Presents".
So who would have thought that this park which is now a popular venue for garden-like weddings and receptions, was the original municipal cemetery with the niches placed within its hollow walls? Yes. The Park was built in 1822 as a cemetery for the most wealthy families in the district of Dilao (former name for Paco). It had been the burial ground for several generations and descendants of those who were buried in the park until 1912 when the burial and interment ceased and had the remains of their ancestors transferred. 
On December 30, 1896, Dr. Jose P. Rizal's remains were secretly  interred at Paco Park after his execution at Bagumbayan. They were guarded for fifteen days by the Guardia Civil Veterana. His sister Narcisa discovered the grave and marked it with marble plaque with Rizal's initials in reverse. His remains were retrieved and exhumed on August 17, 1898, placed in an urn and deposited in the Rizal Residence in Estrada Street, Manila.  On December 30, 1912, our national hero's remains were re-interred at the Rizal Monument.
Aside from being a cemetery, Paco Park served also as a central supply and ammunition depot for the Japanese forces during World War II. The high thick adobe walls around the park were ideal for defensive positions of the Japanese against the United States Army and Philippine Commonwealth Army. 
After the war, Paco Park was slowly restored and remained since then as a public park and promenade. In 1966 during the term of President Diosdado Macapagal, it was converted into a national park but only in 1998 that Paco Park Presents concerts commenced as part of the celebration of Philippine-German month.

P.S. Kuya Mike visited Paco Park on May 17, 2012 and got his stamp on May 23, 2012.

18 comments:

  1. A trivia from Rizal. nice to read about his internment at Paco Park

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  2. I love Paco Park! It is just a short distance away from my high school so we always met there when we had group or class activities.

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  3. Paco Park seems like a nice and worth visiting park, and it has history as well.. Nice one!!!

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  4. yes I see some concerts there great place to visit

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  5. Love places with history, it's really worth sharing to younger generations. I'd love to bring my kids here.

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  6. Paco park would be a great place to visit and its in Metro Manila.

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  7. been here before and its freaky, creepy, and pretty :)

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  8. I've been there before, but I didn't know all those things about the place. Thanks for sharing!

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  9. I have been to MNL many times already but I haven't been here pa!

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  10. Never been there but I would love to!

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  11. I've always wanted to go there :( sigh

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  12. where our heroes lies! history at its finest!

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  13. Haven't been there. Hope they preserve the natural and clean look of the place, kasi may chance na masira ang cleanliness and natural view kapag masyado nang dinadayo.

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  14. it's been a very long time since my last visit to paco park. i hope to visit anytime soon :)

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  15. it's bee a long time since my last visit to paco park. i hope to visit anytime soon :)

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  16. its been a long time since Ive been here. would love to visit again :)

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  17. As a natural born Manileno, I am officially ashamed of myself for not even visiting Paco Park. Thanks for the wake up call.

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  18. Never been there. I hope I could visit the place on day

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