|19 April 1866 – 17 October 1917|
|Place of birth:||Bayanbayanan, Marikina|
|Parents:||Isidro Bautista and Ines de los Santos|
Hermogenes Bautista (1866 – 1917) was a revolutionary general of the Katipunan who was known to be a nationalist and a defender of women’s rights. He was also called Heneral Menes.
Early Life and Education
Bautista was the fifth among twelve children of Isidro Bautista and Ines de los Santos. He was born on 19 April 1866 in Bayanbayanan, Marikina which was then part of the province of Rizal. His father was a farmer who tended the Tuazon hacienda and his mother maintained a store in the barrio. Bautista was initially enrolled in a public school in Marikina but his teachers found him too dull and difficult to teach. He eventually lost interest in studying and focused instead on working. In addition to working on the farm, he found a job as a cochero (coachman) and went around the towns of Marikina, San Mateo, and Pasig to find passengers.
At eighteen years old, Bautista was conscripted for the Spanish infantry of the Spanish army. He served for three years in the troops sent to Lanao to fight the Moros. When this assignment ended, he went back to Manila and became part of the Veterana, the police force of the city. However, he was imprisoned for defending native women from Balintawak from Spanish artillerymen trying to abuse them. He was then assigned as a civil guard after two years of serving in the police force. His service ended in March 1896 in Plaridel, Bulacan.
As a Katipunero
Bautista organized the local chapter of the Katipunan in Marikina. When the Revolution started, the Katipunan members in his chapter met at the plain of Pantayanan and elected him their Military Commander. His army gained strength when some revolutionaries, including Andres Eustaquio, Leoncio Bautista, Jose Eustaquio, Arcadio Sanvictores, and Tomas Medina, agreed to be under his command after a meeting at the Masuyod headquarters.
His election to the post of Military Commander of the Marikina chapter was duly recognized by Andres Bonifacio, who mentioned it in his letter to the High Military Council in the Northern District which was dated 12 December 1896.
According to Artemio Ricarte’s account of the attack at San Mateo, Bautista’s group were among those who joined Andres Bonifacio’s men, who were then hiding in the mountains surrounding Marikina, San Mateo, and Montalban in the province of Rizal. Their forces were able to drive the Spanish army away from San Mateo and Montalban but the Spaniards were able to seek retreat in Marikina.
Bautista was made brigadier general when Atilano Sta. Ana and his men from Manila suburbs and Morong assembled in November at Masuyod. During an encounter at Bakero against a detachment of the Spanish Infantry No. 73, he was shot in the breast. He fought side by side with General Pio del Pilar at Rawang, at Nangka, Morong, and at San Antonio de Padua (now Paete). In June 1897 he led the family of President Emilio Aguinaldo into safety from Talanay to the Puray stronghold.
Bautista almost retired from the Revolutionary forces when he heard rumors that Aguinaldo planned to put uneducated generals in the reserve army. He was eventually recalled, however, and he fought in the battle of Marikina on Holy Friday. He was also one of the commanders in the encounter at Balara, where he charged his soldiers saying, “Sulong ang mga buhay, iwanan ang mga patay” (“advance, the living, leave the dead”). Along with Francisco Sanchez, Julian Santos, and Julian Cruz, he was among the last revolutionaries to surrender and cooperate with the Americans.
After surrendering to the Americans, Bautista busied himself by clearing the forest land he was able to acquire in Marikina. He engaged in the buy-and-sell business of horses, going as far as the provinces of Tayabas (now Quezon), Batangas, and Laguna and bringing them to Manila. The business was so profitable that he was able to put up a carromata (wagon) garage in Sta. Ana and San Juan.
Bautista had three brothers, Leoncio, Felix, and Pedro, who also served in the Revolution. He was married to Cornelia Eustaquio in December 1897. They did not have any children, and when he died on 17 October 1917, his wife continued his carromata business.
- Documents of the Katipunan.Accessed 26 October 2009).
- Manuel,E. Arsenio (1955). Dictionary of Philippine Biography, Volume 1. Quezon City: Filipiniana Publications.
- “History.” Marikina City Official Website. (Accessed 26 October 2009).