Antonio Ledesma Jayme

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The Most Excellent
Antonio L. Jayme
Antonio l jayme.jpg
Secretary of Justice
Republic of Negros
In office
November 27, 1898 – April 30, 1901
President Aniceto Lacson
Preceded by (office created)
Succeeded by (office abolished)
Governor of Negros Occidental
In office
March 7, 1904 – May 8, 1906 [1]
Preceded by Leandero Locsin Rama
Succeeded by Manuel Lopez
Personal details
Born (1854-07-24)July 24, 1854
Jaro, Iloilo City, Iloilo, Captaincy General of the Philippines
Died October 19, 1937(1937-10-19) (aged 83)
Bacolod City, Negros Occidental, Commonwealth of the Philippines
Occupation Lawyer

Antonio Ledesma Jayme (July 24, 1854 - October 19, 1937) was a Filipino lawyer, revolutionary, Governor of Negros Occidental, and assemblyman, as well as a lawmaker and a revolutionary nation's founding father and a signatory to a state's constitution.

Early years and education[edit]

Antonio L. Jayme was born on July 24, 1854 in what is now the district of Jaro, Iloilo City. He was the eldest of seven children of Aguedo Gamboa Jayme and the former Sabina Lopez Ledesma.[2]

Jayme's family migrated to Silay City, Negros Occidental when he was still young. This occurred during a time when the Chinese mestizos of Jaro and Molo in Panay Island were forced to search for better business opportunities aside from Iloilo's declining textile industry, brought about by cheap imports from mainland China. The promise of great reward afforded by the high price of world sugar constituted this preoccupation among Jaro's businessmen to settle in nearby Negros Island.[3] Like the rest of the wave of immigrants, the Jaymes pursued sugar-based agriculture and transformed a tract of land into an hacienda or plantation.

As was common among the principalia in Negros, Jayme enjoyed an early education by crossing the Guimaras Strait to attend the Seminario de Jaro, the Jaro Seminary. He was easily accommodated as his uncle on the paternal side, Fray Francisco Jayme (who tutored and raised[4] Philippine patriot Graciano Lopez-Jaena), was its first rector.[5] From 1869 to 1871, Jayme studied philosophy and letters at Jaro which was still the most populated, most industrious and most prosperous province in the Philippines at that time.[6]

However, in a spirit of wanderlust and in search of better education, he left for Manila to enroll at the Colegio de San Juan de Letran in 1872. After completing his segunda ensenanza (Spanish, "secondary education"), he entered the University of Santo Tomas, where he earned his licenciado en jurisprudencia (equivalent to a Bachelor of Laws) in October, 1881.

He was to become the first Ilonggo lawyer to practice law in Negros during the Spanish colonial period in the Philippines.[7] He subsequently entered public service as justice of the peace and judge of the Court of First Instance in the province.

The Philippine Revolution and its aftermath[edit]

During the second stage of the Philippine Revolution in 1898, Negros took up arms against Spain. Now known as the Cinco de Noviembre Movement or the November 5 Movement of the Negros Revolution, this historical event saw Jayme witnessing the bloodless surrender of Spanish troops in Bacolod City.[8] For the first time, a Philippine flag fluttered triumphantly in the Spanish garrison of Bacolod, an event that saw the people of Negros break "more than three hundred years of Spanish rule without firing a shot."[8]

Jayme was a signatory to the ratification of a constitution for a new government in the wake of Spanish defeat.[9] Upon the formation of the "Cantonal Republic of Negros" (Spanish: República Cantonal de Negros), renamed the Republic of Negros on July 22, 1899, Jayme occupied the seat of Secretary of Justice under President Aniceto Lacson and acted as general counselor of the provisional government despite internal divisions of leadership.[10] Through tact and careful negotiation, he was able to prevent clashes erupting between one group who favored American sovereignty and another group who rallied against it.[10]

After the Treaty of Paris and the subsequent colonialization[11] of the Philippines by the United States, he was elected as provincial governor in the general elections of 1904, defeating Esteban de la Rama, his strongest rival.[10]

As governor, Jayme invested public funds to construct schools, encourage enrollment, and increase the literacy rate of his constituents. Aside from hastening the pacification of the province, he conducted campaigns against vagrancy, banditry, gambling and other vices.[10] Political and social conditions in Negros Occidental further improved through his advocacy of law reform. The laws at the time were products of the Spanish legal system of the 19th century. A file prepared by the National Historical Institute of the Philippines said that "He sought remedies to problems by suggesting modifications in existing laws and the enactment of new ones."[10]

His performance as governor led to his election as representative of the first district of Negros Occidental to the First Philippine Assembly in 1907.[12][13] It was the first time in history that Filipinos formed their own legislative body. He served as a member of the committees on provincial and municipal governments, the committee on the city of Manila, and the committee on the revision of laws. As chairman of the committee on police powers, he authored a bill which sought the abolition of capital punishment.[10]

He returned to private law practice and the management of his haciendas after his career as assemblyman.


As a young man, he was noted as an author of various articles written in Spanish and Hiligaynon which were published in periodicals like La Libertad (1900) and La Razon (1906).[14] " P. Moral", "Farole", "Mansilingan", "Panagao", and "G.G." were some of his pseudonyms. He was also a founder and a professor of the Instituto Rizal, which was later renamed as the Negros Occidental High School.[15] He provided the first classrooms and dormitories of the school.

He was a director of the Bacolod-Murcia Sugar Central which exists to this day.[16]


Jayme died on October 19, 1937, leaving his wife and children. His eldest daughter, Angela, married the businessman and philanthropist Fernando Figueroa Gonzaga.[17] Another descendant, Vicente R. Jayme, was appointed as president of Philippine National Bank, secretary of finance and secretary of public works and highways during the term of Philippine President Corazon C. Aquino.[18][19][20][21]

On February 10, 1989, President Aquino, through Republic Act. No. 6709,[22][23] declared November 5 as a special non-working holiday in Negros Occidental as a reminder of Illongo heroism during the Philippine Revolutions at the waning years of the 19th century. This was in commemoration of the Cinco de Noviembre Movement, where Antonio Ledesma Jayme played an important role as secretary of justice.[24]

See also[edit]

Further reading[edit]

  • National Historical Institute, Republic of the Philippines [25]
  • Jurisprudence of the Supreme Court, Republic of the Philippines [26]
  • Quirino, Carlos. Who’s who in Philippine History. Manila: Tahanan Books, 1995.
  • Sonza, Demetrio. Illustrious Ilonggos. Iloilo :Iloilo Provincial Historical Committee, 1972.
  • The Tribune, December 22, 1936.
  • Lopez, Oscar (ed.) The Lopez Family. Manila: Eugenio Lopez Foundation, 1982.
  • Republic Act. No. 6709, Republic of the Philippines
  • Don Antonio L. Jayme Elementary School [27]
  • Historical Directory of City Officials, Bacolod [28]
  • Jurisprudence of the Supreme Court, Republic of the Philippines [29]
  • Philippine Supreme Court Decisions On-line [30]
  • Filipino Heroes [31]
  • Gatuslao de Himamaylan [2]
  • Lutz vs. Araneta [32]
  • Cinco de Noviembre: Revolution or Hacienda? By Gil Alfredo Severino [33]
  • The remnants of the great Ilonggo nation By Sebastian Sta. Cruz Serag [34]
  • Historical Calendar [3]
  • Rotary Club of Bacolod North [35]
  • Jayme as writer and journalist [36]
  • Jayme as a famous lawyer [36]
  • Jayme as a founder of Negros Occidental High School [37]
  • National Historical Institute [38]
  • The History of the First Philippine Assembly (1907–1916) [39]

List of court cases[edit]


  1. ^
  2. ^ Manuel, E. Arsenio (1955), Dictionary of Philippine biography, Volume 1, Manila: Filipiniana Publications, 1955, p. 235 
  3. ^ Lopez, Oscar (ed.) The Lopez Family. Manila: Eugenio Lopez Foundation, 1982, pp. xvii-xli.
  4. ^ Salvilla, Rex S. (18 December 2006), "The other side of Graciano Lopez Jaena", The News Today, Iloilo City, Philippines 
  5. ^ Manuel, E. Arsenio (1955), Dictionary of Philippine biography, Volume 1, Manila: Filipiniana Publications, 1955, p. 236 
  6. ^ Lopez, Oscar (ed.) The Lopez Family. Manila: Eugenio Lopez Foundation, 1982, pp. xvii-xxiii.
  7. ^ "West Negros College". West Negros College Website (Please see Trivia). Retrieved 2009-10-23. 
  8. ^ a b Serag, Sebastian Sta. Cruz (1997), The remnants of the great Ilonggo nation, Manila: Rex Bookstore, Inc., p. 267, ISBN 978-971-23-2142-9, retrieved 2009-10-23 
  9. ^ {{cite url | title = Zamboanga: The Greatest Republic in History (Part 10): The Uprising in Negros | publisher = Zamboanga Today Online | date = 2005-08-09 | url = | accessdate = 2009-10-23 }}
  10. ^ a b c d e f "Antonio L. Jayme" (PDF). National Historical Institute. Retrieved 2009-10-23. 
  11. ^ Guevara, Sulpico, ed. (1972), Philippine Declaration of Independence, Ann Arbor, Michigan: University of Michigan Library, pp. 234–235, retrieved 2009-10-23 
  12. ^ War Department, Office of the Secretary (1908), 8th Annual Report of the Philippine Commission to the US Secretary of War (1907), Washington: US Government Printing, p. 61, retrieved 2009-10-23 
  13. ^ Jarnegan, Prescott F. (1913), The Philippine Citizen, Fifth Ed., Manila: Philippine Education Co., p. 80, retrieved 2009-02-11 
  14. ^ Esleyer, Primo (19 October 2009), "Bacolod during its eventful days", The Visayan Daily Star, Bacolod City, Philippines, archived from the original on 22 October 2009 
  15. ^ Samillano, Chrysee (12 May 2003), "Restoration of Rizal elementary gets P4.1 M", The Visayan Daily Star, Bacolod City, Philippines, archived from the original on July 3, 2003 
  16. ^ G.R. No. L-31624, Antonio G. Jayme, et al. vs. Bacolod-Murcia Milling Co., et al., January 28, 1930
  17. ^ "Gonzaga marker at NGC". Sun.Star Bacolod. 2009-10-23. Archived from the original on 25 October 2009. Retrieved 2009-10-30. 
  18. ^ Henares Jr., Hilarion M. (May 15, 2005). "Letran educated more Filipino heroes than any other school". (From articles written in 1987 for the Philippine Daily Inquirer). The Philippine Folio. Archived from the original on June 9, 2010. Retrieved November 5, 2009. 
  19. ^ Halloran, Richard (10 November 1989), "Aquino seeks aid from US business", The New York Times, New York 
  20. ^ Chua-Eoan, Howard G. (28 September 1987), The Philippines: Things Fall Apart, New York: 
  21. ^ Crisostomo, Isabelo T. (1987), Cory: Profile of a President, Boston: Branden Publishing Co., p. 259, retrieved 2009-02-11 
  22. ^ "Negros Occidental to commemorate Al Cinco de Noviembre". Sun.Star Bacolod. 2006-11-03. Archived from the original on 2009-03-05. Retrieved 2009-10-12. 
  23. ^ Ronald Echalas Diaz; Chan Robles; Associates Law Firm (1989-02-10). "Philippine Laws, Statutes And Codes - Chan Robles Virtual Law Library". Retrieved 2010-11-01. 
  24. ^ Severino, Gil Alfredo (4 November 2006), "Cinco de Noviembre: Revolution or Hacienda?", Sun.Star Bacolod, Bacolod City, Philippines, archived from the original on 11 December 2008 
  25. ^
  26. ^ "G.R. No. L-47820". Archived from the original on 2012-03-04. Retrieved 2010-11-01. 
  27. ^ "Don Antonio L. Jayme Elementary School Bacolod City, Negros Occidental". Retrieved 2010-11-01. 
  28. ^
  29. ^
  30. ^ butotoy. "Philippine Supreme Court Decisions - January 1930". Retrieved 2010-11-01. 
  31. ^ "THE FILIPINO HEROES (Online) - Photo Gallery". Retrieved 2010-11-01. 
  32. ^ "Coffeeholic Writes // BlogCatalog". Retrieved 2010-11-01. 
  33. ^ "Static pages for archive | Sun.Star Network Online". 2010-08-31. Archived from the original on 2008-12-11. Retrieved 2010-11-01. 
  34. ^ The remnants of the great Ilonggo nation - Google Books. Retrieved 2010-11-01. 
  35. ^ "E-Kahirupan, Weekly Newsletter - Rotary Club of Bacolod North". Retrieved 2010-11-01. 
  36. ^ a b [1] Archived October 22, 2009, at the Wayback Machine.
  37. ^ "Negros-Occidental-High-School | Institutions-Society | Philippine Trivia - Explore Amazing Philippine Trivia Online". Philippine Trivia. 1904-07-01. Retrieved 2010-11-01. 
  38. ^ APOLINARIO MABINI to Mr. Remontado, November 3, 1899. "National Historical Commission of the Philippines". Retrieved 2010-11-01. 
  39. ^ "National Historical Commission of the Philippines". Retrieved 2010-11-01. 
Political offices
Preceded by
Leandro Locsin Rama
Governor of Negros Occidental
Succeeded by
Manuel Lopez