Obscured by the passing and changing of time is this historic Diego-Gabriela Silang Pass. Built during the time of the Franciscan friars in the 1600’s, this pass was used by Andres Malong in his revolt in 1660. One of the most historic and famous revolts happened in this pass when Diego Silang launched his armed resistance against the Spanish authorities in 1762. He succeeded in liberating Ilocos and declared Vigan as the capital of the Free Ilocos State.

Gabriela Silang Memorial - 01

But their success and freedom was shortlived when he died on May 28, 1763 at the treacherous hands of his friends Miguel Vicos and Pedro Becbec. His wife and close confidante Gabriela, a Spanish-Filipina meztiza born in Caniogan, Santa, Ilocos Sur, then took up the cudgels and continued the struggle. The Ilocano Joan of Arc and other revolutionaries were eventually captured and hanged to death on September 20, 1763 in a spot now known as Plaza Salcedo in Vigan City. Their defeat was a classic example of divide and conquer policy of the Spaniards when they pitted the Kapampangans, Tagalogs and other Ilocanos against the Ilocanos and Tingguians.

Gabriela Silang Memorial - 02

On September 20, 1976, or 2013 years later, a marker was unveiled by Doña Josefa Edralin Marcos to commemorate and honor the heroics of the couple.


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