Monday, December 10, 2007

The Bard from Bohol

First | Second | Third | Last

When Boholanos talk about “our President”, there is a big chance we are not talking about the incumbent. More likely, we are talking about the first and only Philippine President who came from our dear province.

Carlos P. Garcia was born on November 4, 1896 in Talibon, Bohol to Policronio Garcia and Ambrosia Polistico. He grew up with politics in his blood, his father having served as Municipal Mayor for four (4) terms. He married pharmacist Leonila “Inday” Dimataga-Garcia and had one daughter named Linda Garcia who later married Fernando Campos.

Garcia had been described as "quiet and serene career politician". He was both an artist - a poet at that - and a politician (in Tagalog, “makata at pulitiko”). He was adoringly referred to as the “Bard from Bohol” or as the “Prince of Visayan Poets”. He was also a school teacher, a legal luminary, and a guerilla leader.

Garcia studied in the Cebu Provincial High School, took up his pre-law degree at Silliman University and earned his Bachelor of Laws degree at the Philippine Law School. In law school, he was holder of the Malcolm Scholarship Award for four (4) consecutive years and was one of the top ten in the bar examinations held in 1923.

After graduating from law school in 1923, Garcia became a school teacher and taught law in Metro Manila colleges. He resigned to join politics in 1925 and was elected for three terms (1925-1931) as representative of the third district of Bohol. Then, he served for three terms (1933-1941) as provincial governor of Bohol.

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