Sanciangco was widely known and admired in Spain as a writer. He was one of a new breed of reform-seeking Filipinos that began to emerge in the 1880s, that included Marcelo H. del Pilar, Graciano Lopez-Jaena, Mariano Ponce, Jose Rizal, and others.
In 1881 he published the first Treatise on Economics entitled "El Progreso de Filipinas." In his "El Progreso," he drew up ways on how Spain could best administer the Philippines and earn the needed revenue to allow it to become a productive colony.
He returned to the Philippines in 1887 and became a justice of the peace in Cabanatuan. But he had a conflict with the parish priest there, so he resigned and joined a law firm.
In 1889 he was deported to Lingayen for sedition but was subsequently freed for lack of evidence.
He died on November 17, 1897 in Nueva Ecija.
A school in Tonsuya was named the Gregorio G. Sanciangco Elementary School on March 16, 1941. On March 7, 1952, on his 100th year birth anniversary, the Philippine Historical Committee placed a marker on the house where he was born in Tonsuya. The public library of Pasay was also named Gregorio G. Sanciangco Memorial Library in July 1954.
|Sanciangco's birthplace in Barangay Tonsuya c. 1963 (Photo from a newspaper clipping of Arch. Richard Bautista).|
... NOW A SHRINE
The Sanciangco shrine is located on the main street named after him in Barangay Tonsuya. Coming from Rizal Avenue going towards Governor Pascual Avenue, you will hardly notice it, because it's tucked into a small corner of a big lot on your left side, before you reach the San Antonio de Padua Parish Church.
|What's left of Sanciangco's house. A small shrine tucked into a corner of a lot, behind an electric post. It's so inconspicuous, don't blink or you might miss it! The bust and the wall behind it appear to have been given a fresh coat of paint because I recently saw a photo taken in 2008 and there was even graffiti on the wall. I wonder if barangay officials of Tonsuya might consider requesting Meralco to move the electric post to give Sanciangco's shrine more visibility and the respect it deserves. Maybe they could also make the signage a little more prominent.|
1) Information from the shrine marker.
2) Ang Malabon, by Angeles S. Santos, 1975.
3) National Historical Institute (http://www.nhi.gov.ph)