Sunday, 27 November 2011

Jose P. Laurel House

By: Paolo M. Bustamante

We were under the rule of the Japanese during his term. He was one of the most controversial politician during his time. Was he a war collaborator, a hero or a traitor? He is none other than the former President of the Philippines Jose P. Laurel. When President Manuel Quezon went to the United States during the Japanese occupation, Jose P. Laurel was elected by the National Assembly as President of the Republic. 

It was a difficult time for him. While our country was struggling for independence, he tried to channel a peace treaty between the Philippines and Japan. But when the Japanese surrenered to the Philippines and the United States. General McArthur ordered Laurel to be arrested for treason (collaborating withe the Japanese) but President Roxas granted him amnesty and was pardoned.He ran during 1949 but he lost against President Quirino. 

He eventually retied and had made three residential houses in the Philippines, one is in Paco Manila. The Jose P. Laurel House in Paco was built during 1864 and was bought by Jose P. Laurel during 1926. He stayed here for 29 years with his wife Panciencia Hidalgo and his kids. Sotero Hidalgo inherited the house but now this house is empty and unmaintained. There's a security guard and a caretaker who checks the house for time to time.Before the month of November (month of his death) ends, we will always remember the former President Jose P. Laurel as a president who sacrificed his life for the Filipino People.


  1. i really hope that the ph government will finally come to its senses and set up an efficient organisation that will maintain houses such as this. europe is full of it. of course, sometimes it gets over the top. but all in all it is part of history, Jose P. Laurel was, for example, so it would be nice if the pinoys could get a glimpse of it. the fees should be affordable.
    anyway, i wonder how did you get in there. did you pay, or acquire a certain permit to enter the premises?
    this will be part of my to-do list once i return to manila for a visit.

  2. i was just shooting outside. I wasn't allowed to go in :(

    1. I have seen this house a few times before, during jeepney rides to and from San Andres, Manila. Once, I was with my classmate, who knew my peculiar fondness of antique houses, and told me that she had been able to go inside before, and there was an entrance fee of five pesos or so. People aren't allowed to enter here anymore? Awful.

  3. Can I know where I could find this? .. the address to be exact. Thank you for your answer :D

  4. Follow-up on this: This is where he and his family stayed during the Jap occupation. He referred to it as his "Penafrancia home" No one can enter it yet since it is managed by the laurel foundation and not by Philippine gov't. To go here from the Pandacan area one must ride a jeep going Taft.

  5. houses like this is so awesome for people who are history enthusiast...