Thursday, May 3, 2012

History of Dupax (Part 5): Historical Sites, Structures, Buildings, Old Ruins, etc.

The construction of the town’s Catholic Church, a living monument of the Spanish occupation, began in 1775 under the direction of Father Manuel Corripio, a missionary of the Dominican Order and who came from Pangasinan. It was originally roofed with pan tiles but were replaced with galvanized iron not long.

[NOTE: The mural of the St. Vincent Ferrer Church in one of the buildings of the adjacent St. Mary's Dupax carries a historical account that, among other things, says: The cornerstone of the church and convent commenced in 1771, it was completed 1776. Before that, the sacristy behind the convent was finished in 1771, and the convent was later completed in 1776. The bell tower was built by stages and completed gradually for a span of 15 years: the first in 1773, the second in 1776, the third in 1786, and the fourth in 1788.]

This 1954 vintage photo of the St. Vincent Ferrer Catholic church of Dupax shows the pockmarks created by bullets fired at the church during World War II. (Photo from the Isinay Friends Facebook group, contributed by a member)

The church was badly damaged during the War of Liberation from the Japanese Imperial Forces. It was reconstructed in 1946-1947 by Father Jose Anseew, a Belgian missionary who was able to raise sufficient funds with his initiative and resourcefulness.

Old folks recall the existence of a brick-work school building in town which was exclusively for girls during the later part of the Spanish regime. The building was constructed in 1892 and destroyed by a very strong typhoon in 1926. Before its destruction it housed the Municipal Government of Dupax.

At the town plaza at present is a cylindrical tower-like construction of bricks which used to be the foundation of a very tall flagpole where once the Spanish national color proudly flew.

The Dupax municipal building, a semi-permanent one was constructed during the administration of Don Tranquilino Orden. It was able to survive World War II with little damage but not the Huks’ fire and propaganda on August 27, 1950.


This little known brick structure at the northern corner of the Dupax del Sur plaza was erected in 1878 under the church leadership of Fr. Antonio Xabet. Years before the Philippine Revolution, it  used to hold the flag of Spain, signifying that Dupax was under Spanish rule.

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