Today in Philippine History July 2, 1889, the Manila school of Agriculture was established

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Thursday November 27, 2014 ()

On July 2, 1889, the Manila school of Agriculture, created by a Royal decree of November 29, 1887, was established.

The objects of the school were: The theoretical and practical education of skilled farmers; The education of overseers; and The promotion of agricultural development in the Philippines, by means of observation, experiment, and investigation.

In order for a student to enter officially into the study of scientific agriculture, it was necessary to be vouched for by a valid certificate, to be of good health, and to have studied and have passed examinations in some institution of secondary education, or other properly accredited institution.

Today in Philippine History July 2, 1889, the Manila school of Agriculture was established

Agricultural stations were established in Isabela de Luzon, Ilocos, Albay, Cebu, Iloilo, Leyte, Mindanao, and Jolo. Those of Jolo and Leyte were abolished by royal decrees, dated September 10, 1888, and December 7, 1891, respectively.

The course of studies was as follows:

  • First year - Elements of agriculture; mathematical problems; practical work in topography; linear and topographical drawing.
  • Second year - Special methods of cultivation; elements of stockbreeding; agricultural arts; practical work in cultivation and the industries; setting up and management of machines; drawing applied to machines and to plants.
  • Third year - Elements of rural economy; accounts and agricultural legislation; general practical work in cultivation, stockbreeding, and industry; drawing of plans.

The education of the overseers was carried on in the agricultural stations, which have been created for the purpose of doing technical work in analyses of earth, systems of irrigation, studies of seed, acclimatization of vegetables and animals, study and treatment of epizootic, epiphysis, etc.

The professors in the school were agricultural engineers and their assistants skilled farmers. The expenses were defrayed entirely by the government, but the direction was in the hands of the priests. The university of Santo Tomas, both of itself, and through the Ateneo Municipal, issued certificates to skilled farmers and surveyors, for which it required mathematics, physics, chemistry, natural history, agriculture, topography, and linear and topographical drawing.

This government school opened with 82 students, but in the following year there were only 50. It cannot be said to have been a success, for the Filipinos, while inclined to readily adopt the professions, have never shown any marked inclination for agro-industrial pursuits.


  1. School of Agriculture, The Philippine Islands, Emma Helen Blair, James Alexander Robertson, Edward Gaylord Bourne, Volume 45, The A. H. Clark company, Cleveland, Ohio, 1903.
  2. The development and the present status of education in the Philippine Islands, Reverend Vincent Catapang, Boston, The Stratford company, 1926.


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