: 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. Pancratius. The 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.