Friday, January 18, 2013

Filipino Martyr: MAXIMO S. GREGORIO

(1856 – 1896)
One of the 13 Martyrs of Cavite
Maximo Gregorio, called Nol Chimo by his neighbors and friends, was one of the “Thirteen
Martyrs of Cavite.” He was born on November 18, 1956 in Pasay, then Rizal province, and the
second of the three children of Francisco Gregorio, who hailed from Badoc, Ilocos Sur, and the
former Celedonia Santiago, who was a native of Pasay.
He studied at the Colegio de San Juan de Letran, but never failed to finish his schooling, as
he was drafted in the Spanish army. After undergoing training in San Antonio, Cavite, he joined
Regiment No. 72, which was sent on an expedition to Jolo to fight and pacify the Moros. Upon his
discharge, he secured an appointment as an encargado in the commissary of the Spanish army in
Cavite, a job he held for 20 years.
He was initiated into Masonry in April 1892, and later joined the Katipunan. He was
active in both societies. He supported the work of Filipino propagandists in the Philippines as well
as abroad.
Gregorio was a civic – minded person who never tolerated abuses by the authorities.
Upon his admission into the Katipunan, he became busy organizing its branches in Cavite.
Under him, two local groups were established. Balangay No. 1 “Marikit,” was formed in Barrio San
Antonio around 1894. When its membership reached 25, Balangay No. 2, named “Lintik,” was
formed in Barrio San Rafael. Both barrios were in the town of San Roque. The activities of the
Katipunan reached the provincial capital due to the membership of Eugenio Cabezas, a
watchmaker, and Eulalio Raymundo, a tailor – their shops were located in the capital – in
Balangay Marikit. Its other members included Severino Lapidario, the provincial warden,
Feliciano Cabuco, and Jose Lallana, another tailor. Gregorio thus became the principal organizer
of the Katipunan in Cavite, there being no single supreme leader named for the entire province of
The uprising in Cavite was planned for September 1, 1896, but Gregorio wanted concerted
action among all the revolutionists, so its was moved to September 3 – 4. However, the so-called
secret was unraveled by the discovery of the plan by Victorina Crespo from her dressmaker.
Likewise, Judge Pedro Solano sensed something was a foot when he suspected his cochero and his
brother of stealing some cartridges and a knife from his house. Henceforth, the authorities
arrested Severino Lapidario, his assistant Alfonso de Ocampo, and Luis Aguado. They were taken
to the boat Ulloa, where they were forced to confess to the charges brought against them after
doing three hours of continuous labor. All this happened on September 3, thus frustrating the
revolutionists’ second plan.
From the declarations of Ocampo, the authorities learned that among the cabecillas, or
little leaders, of the local revolutionists were Victoriano Luciano, Hugo Perez, Agapito Conchu,
Pablo Jose, Marcos Jose, and Juan Castaneda of Imus, and that above them were Maximo
Inocencio, Francisco Osorio and Inocencio were charged with procuring arms and munitions. The
authorities also learned that the revolutionary unit’s secretary was Feliciano Cabuco, and that
plans for the uprising were perfected in the house of Maximo Gregorio.
From the declaration of Lapidario, it was learned that the incitement to take arms came
from Eugenio Cabezas, who, on August 31, was sent by Aguinaldo. From Aguado it was learned
that the houses of Antonio San Agustin and Jose Lallana, besides that of Gregorio, were used by
the revolutionists as meeting places. As a result of these declarations, the authorities affected mass
On that fateful day of September 12, 1896, the 13 doomed men were taken by fours out of
their cells, escorted to the Plaza de Armas of Fort San Felipe, and shot at 12:45, noontime. Ocampo
had to be carried bodily to the execution site due to a wound he had incurred. The dead bodies of
Conchu, Gregorio, Cabuco, Cabezas, Lapidario, and Ocampo were placed on a carabao – drawn
cart and covered with bangkuwang mats, and then taken to the Catholic cemetery of Caridad,
where they were dumped in a common hole. Other martyrs were allowed to be taken by their well
– to – do families, who buried them in separate graves.
On September 12, 1906, 10 years after the mass execution, the bodies of six of the victims
were exhumed and deposited in a vault in a monument erected in honor and memory of all the 13
Cavite martyrs to freedom.
Gregorio’s known hobby was that of wine – making. He made it out of basi, which came
from Badoc in tibor jars. His product was enjoyed as a placer de la reunion and as a delicia de la
He was married to the former Esperanza Legaspi – who died in 1899 – and they had nine
children. Only four of them reached maturity – Agripina, Francisco, Pilar, and Josefa.

Saulo, Alfredo and Esteban A. de Ocampo. History of Cavite : The Mother Ground of the
Philippine Revolution, Independence Flag and National Anthem. Trece Martires : Provincial
Government of Cavite, 1985.
Calairo, Emmanuel Franco V. Cavite el Viejo: Kasaysayan, Lipunan at Kultura. Cavite:
Cavite Studies Center, 1998.

No comments:

Post a Comment