BATANGAS | Marcela Agoncillo House
Taal Heritage Town Photowalk
Like the other Heritage Houses we visited in Taal, The Marcela Agoncillo House is another Casa de Agoncillo. Could be said as the 2nd Agoncillo house because of the most prominent resident this house had ever had. The Marcela Agoncillo house was actually built by Marcela's grandfather Andres Marino. By any means, this is the ancestral house she grew up. Built in the late 1700's and known today to be one of the oldest house in the town of Taal. Heirs of the family had donated this property to the government and is now being maintained by The Department Of Tourism.
The house was turned to a museum and monument commemorating the making of the Philippine Flag, as was Dona Marcela Marino Agoncillo's legacy to our nation as the weaver of the first Philippine Flag, gaining her the title of The Mother Philippine National Flag as its principal seamstress, its the same flag that was hoisted from the window of Emilio Aguinaldo's House in Kawit, Cavite. Check this link to know more about the making of The First Philippine Flag from the National Historical Commission.
On the entrance, one had to walk through a walkway that looks like a parking lot in the ground floor. Before taking the staircase is the commemorative tableau of 3 women sewing the flag. The three women are Dona Marcela herself as the central figure, flanking at her sides the little girl is her eldest daughter Lorenza and other girl is Delfina Herbosa de Natividad, a niece of Jose Rizal. Before we were to mount the staircase to where the grand salon of the house is place like any Spanish inspired houses, we first went through the small library and museum just a couple of flat forms from the ground floor. We were briefed by a guide of the house with the brief history of the prominent historical figure that had called this home. On this library is the hired weaver showing us how weaving is done. Taal may have a lot of Heritage houses, but only a select number of Historical Landmark, this is what makes this house apart from a lot of Kastillan houses in Taal.
Its a grand house, reminiscent of the glory and richness that adorned its halls. Exquisitely sculpted wooden boxes (Bauls), Chinese and Edwardian furniture's, the all too familiar Capiz Shell windows, four poster beds, and the everlasting feel of old wood.
Impersonal and otherworldly, these are but some of the impressions I got from this house. Spacious and open aired, though the family was Illustrado in rank and the children's of Felipe and Marcela Agoncillo all grew up to be highly educated and religious, their old rosary beads left not an impression of themselves. Their old crumbling books fall in decay on the shelves. As was, I wandered in the house swimming in my own imagination, enraptured by the creepy rooms and the baby grand piano by the door, the full length mirrors so clear I can only assume that silver adorned the back of this heavy glass. It's hot, its forlorn and may even be a grave of rich memories, of ages long past whose legacy continues.
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