Battle of Quingua Monument
Filipinos have shown their patriotism, courage and determination throughout history, and Filipinos have given up their lives in the name of freedom and love of country. One landmark that commemorates such bravery is the Battle of Quingua Monument in Plaridel, Bulacan, and has been a proud legacy throughout the ages.
The Battle of Quingua was fought on April 23, 1899, in Quingua, now Plaridel, Bulacan during the Philippine-American War. The engagement was a two-part battle. The first phase was a brief victory for the young Filipino general Gregorio del Pilar over the American Cavalry led by Major J. Franklin Bell, where Bell's advance was stopped. In the second phase of the battle, Bell was reinforced by the 1st Nebraskan Infantry and the Nebraskans routed the Filipinos, but not before they repelled a cavalry charge that killed Colonel John M. Stotsenburg.
The battle began when Bell and his men, while on a reconnaissance mission, came upon a strong position manned by Filipinos led by Colonel Pablo Ocampo Tecson of San Miguel, Bulacan and under the command of General Gregorio del Pilar. The Filipinos laid down heavy fire which halted Bell's advance. After a short firefight, Bell saw that he was in a badly-exposed position, and that his force risked being annihilated. Bell sent for reinforcements, and the 1st Nebraskans came to his aid under Colonel Stotsenburg.
Once he entered the field, Stotsenburg ordered a charge, and the Nebraskan Infantry—Stotsenburg at their lead with a dozen or so Cavalrymen—rushed the enemy's position. The Filipinos held their ground and opened fire into the charging Cavalrymen. Stotsenberg was one of the first to fall, a bullet in his breast. Several of the Cavalrymen's mounts were also slain. The Filipino soldiers sustained the heavy fire, forcing the 4th Cavalry to retreat.
The Nebraskans, only 200 strong, advanced under the withering fire by the Filipino rifleman, who displayed accuracy never witnessed in previous battles. The fire was heavy and effective, but the Nebraskan line did not waver, and soon the two forces clashed in close combat. After a stiff fight, the Filipinos were driven into their secondary defenses. During the fight, the Nebraskan Infantry lost four killed and 31 wounded.
The Filipinos' secondary defenses seemed extremely formidable, and an American frontal assault might have resulted in extreme casualties. Having seen this, commanding General Irving Hale ordered an artillery bombardment upon the enemy lines. Two artillery pieces were brought up, which fired 20 shots into the Filipino positions. The powerful artillery barrage demoralized the Filipinos, who soon retreated before another attack by the Americans.
Even in the face many odds, Filipinos still bared their courage and patriotism, and the Battle of Quingua Monument is a reminder for generations of Filipinos to come.