Museo ng Katipunan (Katipunan Museum) is located in Pinaglabanan Shrine, San Juan City, half a kilometer away from the new San Juan City Hall. This place is solely dedicated to the life and achievements of Andres Bonifacio, the Supremo of Katipunan, and the katipuneros. Museo ng Katipunan is a two-storey building that boasts of historical artifacts, paintings, interactive activities for kids and history buffs and an E-Learning room big enough to accommodate 30 visitors at a time.
For those who are unfamiliar with Katipunan, it is another name of Samahang Kataastaasan, Kagalanggalang Katipunan ng mga Anak ng Bayan (Supreme and Most Honorable Society of the Children of the Nation), a revolutionary group with anti-Spanish sentiments. Founded in 1982, it was an almost anti-thesis of the Reform Movement led by the ilustrados. Andres Bonifacio and the katipuneros wanted freedom from Spain through armed struggle.
For related entries, please read Anting – Anting (Philippine Amulet) Collection of Museo ng Katipunan and Pinaglabanan Shrine (San Juan City).
The façade of Museo ng Katipunan
Logo of National Historical Commission of the Philippines located near the main door of Museo ng Katipunan
Bust of Andres Bonifacio found on the first floor of Museo ng Katipunan. Bonifacio is known as the Supremo ng Katipunan. He and his bolo (blade) were inseparable.
Bust of Gregoria de Jesus, or Oryang, found on the first floor of Museo ng Katipunan. Oryang was the wife of Andres Bonifacio. She was the first woman member of Katipunan and was known as the Lakambini ng Katipunan (Princess of Katipunan).
Andres Bonifacio and Gregoria de Jesus—ang Supremo at ang Lakambini ng Katipunan
Complete content of Tula ni Oryang (Oryang’s Poem) in Tagalog and in English
Bust of Emilio Jacinto found on the first floor of Museo ng Katipunan. Jacinto was tagged as the Brains of the Katipunan as he wrote the Kartilya that served as the Bible of Katipunan.
Complete content of Emilio Jacinto’s Kartilya in Tagalog and in English
This signage is seen on the landing on the way to second floor of Museo ng Katipunan
Opposite the signage is this dedication. In English it says, “This Museum is dedicated to the heroes of the Supreme and Most Honorable (Society) of the Children of the Nation”.
Ang Tondo ni Bonifacio (Bonifacio’s Tondo) shows the places in Tondo and environs connected with Bonifacio. Some of the places are Calle Azcarraga, Iglesia Católica del Niño Jesús, Meisic and Estación Central.
Complete content of Andres Bonifacio’s Ang Dapat Mabatid ng mga Tagalog in Tagalog and in English.
This painting is beside Andres Bonifacio’s Ang Dapat Mabatid ng mga Tagalog
Women in Katipunan. Women members were wives, sisters or daughters of existing katipuneros. They were tasked to keep important documents and to pretend to provide the entertainment in every Katipunan gathering. They sang and danced while meetings were happening to show to the guardia civil that they were only having a party.
One of Katipunan’s flags
The four steps that new recruits experienced before they became full-fledged members of Katipunan. Initiation rites were necessary to test the loyalty and bravery of the interested applicants.
Sanduguan or pacto de sangre or blood compact is the last step in the initation of katipuneros. The skull and bolo on a table were constant presence in the room where initiation occurred.
Katipuneros planning their next move
Unang Sigaw (First Cry/Cry of Balintawak), the event when katipuneros tore their cédula or tax receipts to signal the start of revolution
Bonifacio in the center of the Unang Sigaw (which may or may not be accurate)
Class 9 Cédula Personal. This is a specimen of tax receipt torn by katipuneros. For the economic year 1896-97, the owner of the tax receipt had to pay 2 pesetas 50 céntimos.
Katipunero’s weapon: the bolo (blade) has carabao horn handle, carabao head design loop and leather scabbard and belt
Katipunero’s weapon: bolo with wooden handle and scabbard
The katipuneros, who might have thought that their bolos were not enough to ward off the Spaniards or it might be due to unrelenting belief in paganism, wore anting-anting (amulets). This one is a hand painted cloth vest with all-seeing eye designs among other things.
Katipunero’s anting-anting (amulet): The one on the left is a white cotton handkerchief with the all-seeing eye surrounded by Latin prayers. The one on the right is white cotton handkerchief with Jesus Christ’s image.
Katipunero’s anting-anting (amulet) in counterclockwise direction: bronze fleur-de-lis cross, string necklace with turquoise blue pouch, hollowed wood mounted on bronze, copper scalloped with loop with inverted triangle on both sides to represent “Deus” and bronze, triangular shaped with loop with all-seeing eye.
Maybe the anting-anting worked because there medals given to the katipuneros. From left to right: Ceremonial Sword medal, Katipunan Bolo medal and Open Book Pierced by a Book Medal
Katipunan medals from left to right: Medal of a Sun with a Man’s Face and Eight Rays (worn by Supremo Andres Bonifacio), Quarter Moon Medal (worn by Dr. Pio Valenzuela, Fiscal and Physician) and Crossed Key Medal (worn by Councilor Enrique Enchico)
Busts of Emilio Jacinto, Andres Bonifacio and Pio Valenzuela found near the exit of Museo ng Katipunan. Aside from writing the Kartilya, Emilio Jacinto was Bonifacio’s first adviser, the editor of Kalayaan (Freedom), the official newspaper of Katipunan, and was handy with weapons of war. Andres Bonifacio was the first writer to translate Jose Rizal’s Mi Ultimo Adios in Tagalog. Together with Bonifacio and Jacinto, Dr. Pio Valenzuela was the third of the big three of Katipunan. He was the surgeon-general of Katipunan.
E-Learning Classroom of Museo ng Katipunan
Some of the flags of Katipunan
One of the panels with the names of katipuneros who sacrificed their lives for Philippines’ freedom
For more information about Andres Bonifacio and Katipunan, please read Anting-anting (Philippine Amulet) Collection of Katipunan Museum and Pinaglabanan Shrine – San Juan City.
Where: Pinaglabanan Shrine, San Juan City, Philippines
When: The Museo ng Katipunan is open from Tuesday to Sunday, from 9am to 12pm and from 1pm to 4pm.
How much: No entrance fee but visitors can donate cash.
How: From the Cubao MRT station, ride a jeepney bound to San Juan. Alight the vehicle at the corner of N. Domingo and B. Serrano, walk towards the new San Juan City Hall for 5 minutes. Museo ng Katipunan is near the city hall.
From J. Ruiz LRT Station, ride a tricycle and tell the driver to drop you off to the Museo ng Katipunan. Fare is P30.00 (US $0.68).