Manila North Cemetery

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Manila North Cemetery
Manila North Cemetery 2.jpg
Entrance of the Manila North Cemetery
Location Santa Cruz, Manila
Country Philippines
Coordinates 14°37′59″N120°59′20″E / 14.633°N 120.989°E / 14.633; 120.989 Coordinates: 14°37′59″N120°59′20″E / 14.633°N 120.989°E / 14.633; 120.989
Owned by Manila City Government
Size54 ha (130 acres)
Find a Grave Manila North Cemetery

The Manila North Cemetery is one of the oldest cemeteries in Metro Manila, the Philippines. The cemetery is owned by the City of Manila, the national capital, and is one of the largest in the metropolis at 54 hectares. It is located alongside Andrés Bonifacio Avenue, bordering it are two other important cemeteries: the La Loma Cemetery and the Manila Chinese Cemetery. Numerous impoverished families notably inhabit some of the mausoleums. [1]

Metro Manila Metropolis and Region in Metropolitan Manila Development Authority, Philippines

Metropolitan Manila, officially the National Capital Region (NCR), is the seat of government and one of the three defined metropolitan areas of the Philippines. It is composed of 16 cities namely: the City of Manila, Quezon City, Caloocan, Las Piñas, Makati, Malabon, Mandaluyong, Marikina, Muntinlupa, Navotas, Parañaque, Pasay, Pasig, San Juan, Taguig, and Valenzuela, as well as the municipality of Pateros.

Philippines Republic in Southeast Asia

The Philippines, officially the Republic of the Philippines, is an archipelagic country in Southeast Asia. Situated in the western Pacific Ocean, it consists of about 7,641 islands that are categorized broadly under three main geographical divisions from north to south: Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao. The capital city of the Philippines is Manila and the most populous city is Quezon City, both part of Metro Manila. Bounded by the South China Sea on the west, the Philippine Sea on the east and the Celebes Sea on the southwest, the Philippines shares maritime borders with Taiwan to the north, Vietnam to the west, Palau to the east, and Malaysia and Indonesia to the south.

La Loma Cemetery

The La Loma Catholic Cemetery was opened in 1884 and is located in Caloocan City, Metro Manila. A portion of the southern part of the cemetery is located in Manila.



Aerial view of Cementerio del Norte (1928) Del Norte Cemetery (15164139030).jpg
Aerial view of Cementerio del Norte (1928)

The Manila North Cemetery was formerly part of La Loma Cemetery, but was separated as an exclusively Catholic burial ground. [2] The cemetery formerly known as Cemeterio del Norte [3] was laid out in 1904. [4]

During the Japanese occupation of the Philippines in World War II the cemetery became the site of atrocities. There are accounts that Imperial Japanese forces led by General Tomoyuki Yamashita brutally killed more than 2,000 unarmed noncombatants in the cemetery from October to November 1944. [3]

Japanese occupation of the Philippines

The Japanese occupation of the Philippines occurred between 1942 and 1945, when Imperial Japan occupied the Commonwealth of the Philippines during World War II.

World War II 1939–1945 global war

World War II, also known as the Second World War, was a global war that lasted from 1939 to 1945. The vast majority of the world's countries—including all the great powers—eventually formed two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis. A state of total war emerged, directly involving more than 100 million people from over 30 countries. The major participants threw their entire economic, industrial, and scientific capabilities behind the war effort, blurring the distinction between civilian and military resources. World War II was the deadliest conflict in human history, marked by 50 to 85 million fatalities, most of whom were civilians in the Soviet Union and China. It included massacres, the genocide of the Holocaust, strategic bombing, premeditated death from starvation and disease, and the only use of nuclear weapons in war.

Tomoyuki Yamashita general in the Imperial Japanese Army

Tomoyuki Yamashita was a Japanese general of the Imperial Japanese Army during World War II. Yamashita led Japanese forces during the invasion of Malaya and Battle of Singapore, with his accomplishment of conquering Malaya and Singapore in 70 days earning him the sobriquet The Tiger of Malaya and led to the British Prime Minister, Winston Churchill, calling the ignominious fall of Singapore to Japan the "worst disaster" and "largest capitulation" in British military history. Yamashita was assigned to defend the Philippines from the advancing Allied forces later in the war, and while unable to stop the Allied advance, he was able to hold on to part of Luzon until after the formal Surrender of Japan in August 1945.

The cemetery's being one of the oldest cemeteries in the metropolis is evident on the different designs of mausoleums that reflect the prevailing architectural styles in the Philippines. The styles range from simple, plain-painted with a patch of greenery, to very complex designs that contain reliefs that are difficult to carve while also having different colors.

Informal settlement

Many people already live inside the cemetery and some of them serve as caretakers of the mausoleums where they also stay to survive. When the families or owners of the mausoleums come, especially during and after All Soul's Day, the families transfer to other places. In addition, the informal settlers often serve as informal tour guides, bringing visitors to tombs of famous people and discussing the oral history of the area. [4] Others take advantage of the quantity of visitors during the Allhallowtide holiday, setting up stalls to sell drinks and snacks, and providing visitors other services like renting out their toilets. [5]

Allhallowtide triduum encompassing the Western Christian observances of All Hallows Eve, All Saints Day, and All Souls Day

Allhallowtide, Hallowtide, Allsaintstide, or the Hallowmas season, is the triduum encompassing the Western Christian observances of All Saints' Eve (Halloween), All Saints' Day and All Souls' Day, which last from 31 October to 2 November annually. Allhallowtide is a "time to remember the dead, including martyrs, saints, and all faithful departed Christians." The present date of Hallowmas and thus also of its vigil (Hallowe'en) was established for Rome perhaps by Pope Gregory III (731–741) and was made of obligation throughout the Frankish Empire by Louis the Pious in 835. Elsewhere, other dates were observed even later, with the date in Ireland being 20 April. In the early 11th century, the modern date of All Souls' Day was popularized, after Abbot Odilo established it as a day for the monks of Cluny and associated monasteries to pray for the dead.

The Manila city government is now trying to find solutions on the issue of squatting.

Heritage Structures

Bautista-Nakpil Pylon

The Bautista-Nakpil Pylon at the North Cemetery was designed by Juan Nakpil as a tribute to both Bautista and Nakpil families, including his uncle and benefactor, Dr. Ariston Bautista. The funerary pylon is a tall, square podium which has four human figures on the top corners that form a gesture of prayer capping off the tall columns. The frontal side is embellished by geometricized flowers, spiraling foliage, and nautilus shells in low-relief concrete panels which has a highly decorized stoup on the lower portion. [6] An octagonal lantern-like form sits on top of the podium with miniature columns buttressing on all sides and crowned by a rigid dome.

Juan Felipe de Jesus Nakpil, known as Juan F. Nakpil, was a Filipino architect, teacher and a community leader. In 1973, he was named one of the National Artists for architecture. He was regarded as the Dean of Filipino Architects.

Mausoleum of the Veterans of the Revolution

The Mausoleum of the Veterans of the Revolution is a memorial dedicated to Filipino revolutionaries of the Philippine Revolution and the Philippine-American War.

Notable burials

The remains of key figures in Philippine history such as former Presidents Sergio Osmeña, Ramón Magsaysay and Manuel Roxas; historian Epifanio de los Santos; and celebrities as actor Fernando Poe Jr. are buried in the cemetery. [7]

Most of the people have their tombs on the main avenue of the cemetery while other notable people are located near the main entrance. [4]

Mausoleo de los Veteranos de la Revolucion Norte01.jpg
Mausoleo de los Veteranos de la Revolución
Magsaysay Memorial NorthCem-A.JPG
Magsaysay Memorial
Juan Nakpil Memorial NorthCem-B.JPG
Juan Nakpil Memorial
Poe Family Mausoleum NorthCem-G.JPG
Poe Family Mausoleum

Group plots

See also

Related Research Articles

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Elpidio Quirino 6th President of the Philippines

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Mausoleum of the Veterans of the Revolution

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  1. James Chance (2010). "Living with the dead: Manila's North Cemetery". Pictures of the Year International. Donald W Reynolds Journalism Institute. Retrieved 5 April 2013.
  2. Republic of the Philippines: Presidential Museum and Library."Our Heritage and the Departed: A Cemeteries Tour Archived 2015-09-28 at the Wayback Machine .".
  3. 1 2 Palafox, Quennie Ann (4 September 2012). "Cemeteries of Memories, Where Journey to Eternity Begins". National Historical Commission of the Philippines. Retrieved 4 November 2018.
  4. 1 2 3 Vintage Philippines. December 2, 2010. "Manila North Cemetery: A Time Capsule of Philippine History Archived 2014-05-03 at the Wayback Machine .".
  5. Sauler, Erik. November 2, 2012. Philippine Daily Inquirer. "From buko shakes to portalets, entrepreneurs thrive at Manila North Cemetery".
  6. Lico, Gerard (2008). Arkitekturang Filipino: A History of Architecture and Urbanism in the Philippines. Quezon City: The University of the Philippines Press. pp. 331–332, 339. ISBN   978-971-542-579-7.
  7. Philippine Daily Inquirer. November 2, 2012. "Did You Know: Manila North Cemetery".
  8. CWGC Casualty record.
  9. Walter Ang. October 28, 2013. "8 Trivia About Manila Cemeteries".