Malolos is the capital city of the province of Bulacan. It is one of the major suburbs conurbated to Metro Manila, situated in the southwestern part of Bulacan, in the Central Luzon Region (Region 3) in the island of Luzon and part of the Metro Luzon Urban Beltway Super Region. Bordering Malolos are the municipalities of Bulacan, Bulacan (the former capital of the province) to the southeast, Guiguinto to the east, Plaridel to the north, Calumpit to the northwest, and Paombong to the west. Malolos also lies on the north-eastern shore of Manila Bay.
Malolos was the site of the constitutional convention of 1898, known as the Malolos Convention, that led to the establishment of the First Philippine Republic, at the sanctuary of the Barasoain Church. The convent of the Malolos Cathedral served as the presidential palace at that time. Malolos gave birth to the first constitutional republic in Asia.
No other towns in the Philippines can be linked to the great patriots and heroes in the country’s history more than Malolos—capital of the short-lived Philippine Republic. Such name as General Emilio Aguinaldo, Pedro A. Paterno, Dr. Jose P. Rizal and the del Pilars- Marcelo, Pio, and Gregorio, Apolinario Mabini, Antonio Luna, Felipe Calderon, and a host of others are forever engraved in the annals of Philippine History.
The name of Malolos was presumably derived from the Tagalog word “Paluslos”, meaning ” downwards”. The name resulted from a misunderstanding among the first Spanish missionaries who reached the place. Searching for inhabited places along the Calumpit River, these priests came upon some natives of a riverside barrio (now Kanalate). They asked for the name of the place. The natives, not knowing the Spanish tongue, answered that the flow of the river in that part was downstream -“paluslos”-, which the Spaniards pronounced “Malolos“. Corruption of the word through the years led to present “Malolos“.
The town originated from a small settlement started by the Spanish missionaries. Later, after clearing forests and virgin lands, the settlement grew, and the population increased. After the construction of a big church, the place was made into a town. From the very beginning, Tagalog made up the majority of the Malolos populace. They were led by prominent families, among them the Gatsalians (Gatchalian), and the Manahans.
To cite all the historical events that transpired in Malolos, one could very well fill a good-sized book. The major events especially those that revolved around the first Republic, cannot be left unmentioned.
The wealth of Malolos lies not only in its more than four thousand hectares of fertile rice lands and more than two thousand hectares of fishponds, but in the character of its people as well. Its people have long been known for their diligence and ingenuity. In early days, farming and fishing took up most of the poultry, farming, pigeon rising, carpentry and woodwork, and other profitable cottage industries and handicrafts. A major factor in Malolos growth and development was the opening of the Manila-Dagupan railways in 1892. With the advent of the railroad came new ideas from Manila and other places. Another factor is Malolos proximity to industrial and business centers. Only 42 kilometers off from Manila, the town and its people are inevitable subjected to an influx of metropolitan thoughts.
In work methods and tools, it is estranged to find Malolos folk using a combination of the old and the new Ramshackle hops tremble to the whirl of modern electric-powered machines. Fishermen go out to the sea in the same dugouts their grandfathers used. Some of them have outboard motors. And handicraftsmen, woodworkers and weavers still follow the ageless techniques of their forefathers.