Thursday, August 13, 2015

Ancestral House of Former President Jose P. Laurel (1515)

Photo of former President Jose P. Laurel

The Jose P. Laurel Ancestral House  is a historic
house in Manila, Philippines. It is one of the three 
houses owned by the President of the Second 
Philippine Republic, José P. Laurel.
It is located in 1515 Peñafrancia Street (corner Santo Sepulcro Street) in Paco District (hence also known as "Villa Peñafrancia"). 

(Front gate of the ancestral house and its address) 

 The ancestral house of Jose P. Laurel (old photo)

President Laurel purchased the house in 1926 and served as his residence, together with his wife Paciencia Hidalgo and their children, for 29 years before he transferred to his retirement home in Mandaluyong.

Originally built in 1861 during the Spanish Colonial Period in the Philippines, this residential structure reflects the architectural style common around that time known as Bahay-na-Bato ("House-of-Stone").

Ancetral house from the back gate (old photo) 
Masonry materials constitute the lower level or the ground floor of the house while wooden materials and capiz-shell windows dominate the upper floor. 

The roofing of the house is made of corrugated galvanized iron while its vented eave ceilings are decorated with simple cut-out floral design.

Ornate grill works also adorn the windows in the ground floor and the ventanillas (small shuttered openings below the windows) of the upper floor. Adjoining the northwest portion of the house is the garage area with an azotea or rooftop.

In March 1998, the ancestral house was designated as a Historic Building (House Type) by the National Historical Commission of the Philippines in which a marker was placed at the front corner of the property.

Jose P Laurel's ancestral house from the front house (present photo)

The house property was inherited by President Laurel's third son Sotero H. Laurel, which he donated to the Jose P. Laurel Memorial Foundation. Restoration efforts led by Sotero Laurel were made to bring back the former grandeur of the structure and to honor his father's dedicated service in the Philippines.

Back side of the ancestral house (present photo)


The best way to make this landmark be known once more is that we must renovate and preserve this ancestral house of our former President Jose P. Laurel, and in that way there will be a great privilage that we Filipinos will always treasure, recall and keep in mind all the memories and historical accomplishments of what have Jose P. Laurel done for us Filipino people. We can also make this as a museum for us educators and especially to those students for us to have a place of knowledge with regards to the biographical history of our former Pres. Jose P. Laurel.