Hilaria Aguinaldo

Hilaria Aguinaldo

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Hilaria Aguinaldo

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Hilaria del Rosario (1877 – March 6, 1921) was the first wife of General Emilio Aguinaldo, the first President of the Philippines (1898-1901). Emilio Aguinaldo married her on New Year's Day, 1896, the very same day he joined the Katipunan, the secret society that would initiate the Philippine Revolution. Although the title "first lady" was not used, and did not refer to the wife of the President of the Philippines (being used only with the onset of the American governors-general in reference to their wives) at the time, she is today considered the first First Lady of the Philippines.

Mrs. Aguinaldo complemented Emilio's military campaigns by caring for wounded soldiers and their families. In 1899, as the president's spouse, she established the Hijas de la Revolución (Daughters of the Revolution) that later became Asociación de la Cruz Roja (Red Cross Association), considered a kind of precursor of the present Philippine National Red Cross, and for this she raised funds for medicine and other supplies. She was captured by American troops in 1900 and reunited with her husband after his capture by the Americans in 1901.

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