Established to commemorate the sacrifice of a woman who gave her life for freedom, the Gabriela Silang Monument in Makati is a landmark that helps keep patriotism alive. It is a tribute to the heroine of Gabriela Silang who continued the struggle for freedom from the Spaniards started by her slain husband, Diego Silang.
Located in the heart of Ayala Avenue in Makati City, the business district of the Philippines, lays the Gabriela Silang Monument. This monument was created by Jose M. Mendoza in 1971 and was placed by the Zobel de Ayala Family and inaugurated by Gabriela Silang's great-granddaughter Gloria Cariño and her great-grandson Mario Cariño Merritt.
The Heroism of Gabriela Silang
Gabriela Silang was the first Filipino woman to lead a revolt during the Spanish colonization of the Philippines. An active member of the insurgent forces of Diego Silang, her husband, and led the group for four months after his death before she was captured and executed.
María Josefa Gabriela Cariño Silang was a mestiza of Spanish and Ilocano descent. She was adopted by a wealthy businessman who later married her at the age of 20, but left after three years. In 1757, she married again, this time to 27-year-old indigenous Ilocano rebel leader, Diego Silang. She became one of his closest advisors, a major figure in her husband's collaboration with the British and the brief expulsion of Spanish officials in Vigan, Ilocos Sur.
Her ferocity and death became a symbol for Filipino women, their pre-colonial importance in Filipino society and their struggle for liberation during colonization.
Other Legacies and Recognitions
- In honor of Gabriela Silang as a Philippine heroine, Ilocos Sur's provincial hospital was named Gabriela Silang General Hospital.
- As an inspiration to heroism, a Filipino organization that advocates women's issues was founded in April 1984 and named GABRIELA, or the General Assembly Binding Women for Reforms, Integrity, Equality, Leadership, and Action.
- A monument stands at the town plaza of Pidigan, Abra to remind every one of the gallant stand and the ideals she and her husband fought and died for.
- The Tangadan Welcome Tunnel in Abra now has the Gabriela Silang Memorial Park with the Monument of the great heroine.
- Her unique policy of harassment was so successful that the name generala, which was given to her by the masses, struck terror to the Spanish troops and to Ilocanos who collaborated with Spain.
Getting around Makati
The Epifanio De los Santos Avenue (EDSA) pass along the southeast part of Makati and connects the city with Mandaluyong City and Pasay City. The South Luzon Expressway (SLEX) runs through the western part of Makati and connects the city with Manila to the north and with southern Metro Manila. The Skyway, an elevated highway built on top of SLEX, provides residents coming from southern Metro Manila a fast way to reach Makati.
Buses plying the Epifanio de los Santos Avenue (EDSA/C-4) route from Baclaran in Parañaque to Quezon City and Caloocan City pass through the central business/financial district daily. Jeepneys ply Makati's inner roads and connect the city to its surrounding towns and cities. The Metro Rail Transit (MRT-3) on EDSA has four stations located in Makati: Guadalupe, Buendia, Ayala and Magallanes. The Philippine National Railways meanwhile has three stations: Buendia, Pasay Road and EDSA.