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The famous house of the family of Doña Maria Josefa Gabriela Cariño Silang (also known Gabriela Silang) in Barangay San Antonio was restored and converted as the Candon City Museum.

Led by the Department of Tourism (DOT) secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat, Ilocos Sur 2nd District Congressman Eric D. Singson, and Executive Director Ludovico Badoy of the National Historical Commission (NHC), the ancestral house, called Cariño family house, was formally opened on May 23, Thursday.

“Given this historical background, this edifice stands as a reminder of Ilocano pa­triotism and reflects as Spanish influence on every facet of Filipino life-from our national identity, culture, traditions, religion, and, of course, cuisine,” said Secretary Romulo-Puyat in a press interview.

The Cariño family house was one of the 20 old houses in Candon City that survived during the World War II. These houses were earlier documented as city’s heritage houses and treasures.

Historian Larry Cariño, one of the descendants of the Cariño family, theorized that the house was built 400 years ago.

“My belief is that the house was built at the same time when the Candon’s San Juan de Sahagun Church was built in 1591,” Cariño said. “There were evidences to have shown that our ancestral house was built at the same time with our centuries-old San Juan de Sahagun Church.”

He also shared that the house has a rich cultural history as the house was used to be owned by the father of Gabriela Silang, first Filipino woman revolutionist also known as the “Joan of Arc in Ilokandia.”

“I heard from our ancestors that this house was also said to be the place where Gabriela Silang and husband Diego Silang plotted their revolt against the Spaniards,” Cariño added.

The museum features Candon’s antique artifacts, collections, old paintings, and designs that represent the heritage and culture not only of Candon City but also the entire Ilocos provinces.

Cariño family’s descendants donated the house to the city govern­ment to make it as museum. NHC spent at least P20 million for the full restoration of the ancestral house.

Photos from Department of Tourism | Facebook

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