Last updated on October 24th, 2023 at 06:28 pm2 minutes read
The Manila Central Post Office, a cherished landmark in Manila, Philippines, is a stunning neoclassical masterpiece designed by renowned architects Juan Arellano and Tomas Mapua. This architectural gem has graced the city for nearly a century, serving as a vital part of its postal service. Unfortunately, a recent fire cast a dark shadow on this historic structure. In this blog post, we’ll delve into intriguing facts about the Manila Central Post Office, allowing us to appreciate its magnificent architecture and cultural significance.
1. Architectural Marvel:
In 1926, architects Juan Arellano and Tomas Mapua initiated the construction of the Manila Central Post Office. Their exceptional craftsmanship is evident in the grand neoclassical design with intricate details. They seamlessly incorporated various architectural styles, such as Greco-Roman and Art Deco, resulting in a one-of-a-kind and awe-inspiring building.
2. A Historical Legacy:
For over 90 years, the Manila Central Post Office has been a pivotal hub for Philippine postal services. Beyond its practical role, it holds immeasurable historical importance. It stands as a poignant reminder of the Philippines’ enduring postal tradition, symbolizing the nation’s progress during the American colonial era.
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3. Cost and Construction:
During its construction, the Manila Central Post Office was hailed as an engineering and architectural marvel. Its cost of P1 million at the time reflected its grandeur, signifying a substantial investment. When completed in 1940, it became a prominent fixture in Manila’s architectural landscape, embodying the nation’s aspirations.
4. The Destructive Fire:
JUST IN: Itinaas na sa Task Force Delta ang sunog sa gusali ng Manila Central Post Office sa Lawton, Maynila kung saan hindi bababa sa 36 truck ng bumbero at mga volunteer ang kailangang rumesponde para makontrola ang apoy. | via @_KarenDeGuzmanpic.twitter.com/GfqESM3Z3D— ABS-CBN News (@ABSCBNNews) May 21, 2023
Tragically, on May 21, the Manila Central Post Office fell victim to a devastating fire that engulfed the historic structure. The fire, which started at 11:41 p.m., raged for nearly eight hours before being extinguished at 7:22 a.m. the following day. This incident brought deep grief and sorrow to the Filipino people, mourning the loss of this cultural treasure.
5. Cultural Symbolism:
Beyond its utilitarian role, the Manila Central Post Office serves a profound purpose. It embodies the spirit of communication, connecting people across the archipelago and facilitating the exchange of ideas, news, and emotions. Families and friends gathered there eagerly awaiting letters and packages, especially during significant occasions and holidays. It holds a special place in the cultural memories of generations of Filipinos.
6. Surviving World War II
Remarkably, the Manila Central Post Office endured the ravages of World War II. Despite the widespread destruction in Manila during the war, the building remained relatively intact—a testament to its robust construction and resilient design.
The recent fire that engulfed the Manila Central Post Office serves as a stark reminder of the vulnerability of our historical treasures. This post office carries significant cultural and historical value for the people of the Philippines, and its loss is not just structural but also deeply emotional. Despite the challenges, there is hope. Let us unite to protect and preserve this national treasure so that future generations can appreciate its beauty and historical significance.
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