The Story of the Lopez Family

The Story of the Lopez Family: A Page from the History of the War in the Philippines

Story of Lopez Family

In 1904 the Boston Anti-Imperialist League published The Story of the Lopez Family: A Page from the History of the War in the Philippines, a book of the collected letters sent between the Lopez family members in the U.S. and the Philippines, several years earlier, when the Lopez brothers were imprisoned by American forces in the Philippines.[i] The book drew primarily from letters between sisters Juliana, and Mariquita Lopez, as well as their brother Mariano, to both Clemencia and Sixto while they were in the U.S.  Their family at that time consisted of six sons, four daughters, and their mother, a widow, Maria Castelo de Lopez.[ii] Initially, some of the letters had been presented as support material for the Hearings before the United States Senate Committee on the Philippines on April 10, 1902, in which Clemencia Lopez participated. In many ways, the focus of this epistolary volume is on Clemencia Lopez (later a founding member of the Philippine Feminist Association), as a sympathetic character representating Filipino womanhood — an important emphasis, for many readers of the book would be liberal American women.

The letters in the book are heavily mediated with commentary by the pseudonymous editor, “Canning Eyot,”[iii] to emphasize the agenda of the American Anti-Imperialist League, which was to tell “the story of the infliction of wrong and injustice” by Americans towards Filipinos,[iv] and also to incur further sympathy for the plight of the Lopez family, as well as the people of Batangas, and the Philippines in general.[v]

This book is available free, online in Google Books or in e-book form: The Story of the Lopez Family


[i] Canning Eyot, The Story of the Lopez Family: a page from the history of the war in the Philippines, (Boston: James H. West Company, 1904).

[ii] The Story, 10.

[iii] According to the book’s “Editorial Review” on Amazon.com, “Canning Eyot” is a pseudonym for a group of the product of a group “Filipinos, Americans, and an Australian,” who edited the volume as a group.

[iv] Canning Eyot, The Story of the Lopez Family, 9.

[v] Martin Joseph Ponce explains that letters “represent epistolary acts, efforts to draw connections and deliver critiques across the sites of…social dispersal. When published in journals and magazines that cater to specific niches within the international labor market, these letters become part of public discourse–a discourse that is thoroughly gendered and sexualized.” Beyond the Nation, 23.