Biography Melchora Aquino
Melchora Aquino de Ramos was a Filipina revolutionary. She was born on January 6, 1812 in Caloocan. She was the daughter of a peasant couple, Juan and Valentina Aquino. She never attended school, but was seemingly literate at a young age and talented as a singer. She performed at the Mass for her church as well as at local events.
Melchora Aquino married Fulgencio Ramos, a village chief and had six children. When their youngest child was seven years old, Ramos died, leaving young Melchora as a single parent.
Melchora Aquino was known for her heroic contributions in the history of the Philippines revolution. The revolution broke out in 1896. She was 84 years at that time. Most of the wounded and sick Filipino revolutionaries sought refuge in her store. She not only gave them medical attention, but also encouraged the revolutionaries with prayers and motherly advice. Many revolutionaries also held secret meetings at her home. She earned the name “Mother of Katipunan (revolution)” and was also known as “Tandang Sora”, where “Tandang” meant old.
The Spaniards learnt about her activities and she was interrogated for the whereabouts of revolutionaries, especially, Andres Bonifacio. She was adamant and refused to provide any information to the Spanish. She was arrested and deported to the Mariana Islands.
In 1898, the United States took control of the Philippines and Aquino and other political exiles returned to Philippines. She died on March 2, 1919, at the age of 107. Today, her remains lie in Himlayang Pilipino Memorial Park in Quezon City. As a token of Filipino gratitude, Melchora Aquino's image is depicted on a 100-peso bill of the English series of banknotes. A Quezon City road and district were named after her.