Andres Bonifacio (1863 - 1897) The father of the Philippine Revolution

Andres Bonifacio was born in Tondo, Manila in 1863, the son of Santiago Bonifacio a boatman who later became teniente mayor (what would now be called vice mayor). His mother, Catalina Bonifacio, died of tuberculosis in 1881, and his father died a year later.

His father's death forced Bonifacio to leave school (his family earned enough money to send him to school), but by that time Bonifacio was educated enough to be literate in Spanish. To support his 3 brothers and two sisters, Bonifacio took the job of a bodegero (warehouse keeper).

In 1892, Andres joined La Liga Filipina, an organization founded by Philippine national hero, Jose Rizal. The organization's objective was to convince Spain to grant full Spanish citizenship to Filipinos. When Rizal was arrested and exiled later in 1892, however, Bonifacio became convinced that independence was the only path for the Philippines.

To achieve this goal, Bonifacio founded the KKK, or Kataastaasan Kagalang-galang na Katipunan nang mga Anak nang Bayan, now more commonly referred to as the Katipunan. The Katipunan's was a secret society who's objective was to begin an armed revolution against Spain.

In 1896, the Katipunan was discovered by a spanish friar. On August 23 of that year Bonifacio gathered the Katipuneros to Pugadlawin, where they tore their cedulas and cried out "Long live the Philippines!" An event now called "The cry of Pugadlawin1." The Philippine Revolution began.

Bonifacio was not an effective general. The Spaniards regularly defeated the troops that Bonifacio led. On the other hand, one of his lieutenants, Emilio Aguinaldo, was winning his side of the war, and was able to capture a few towns. The army led by Bonifacio called Magdiwang and the Magdalo group led by Aguinaldo became bitter rival factions. The disputes among the two factions led to the re-capturing of a few towns by the Spaniards.

In an effort to reunite the two groups, a convention was held at Tejeros in 1897.

The Tejeros convention ultimately resulted with Aguinaldo voted as president. Bonifacio, however, refused to recognize the results of the convention, and declared it void, by his power as the Supremo of the Katipunan. Bonifacio took the men who were still loyal to him to Indang, Cavite. Bonifacio was later captured there by Aguinaldo's troops. In a trial that is largely thought to be unfair, Bonifacio, along with his brother Procopio, were tried for treason, and were sentenced to death.

On May 10, 1897, Andres and Procopio Bonifacio were shot to death, on the orders of Emilio Aguinaldo. Andres was only 34 years old.

reference: also has a short biography.

1 Historians don't agree on this one. Some people think that the event actually happened at Balintawak

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