Born 16 November 1890, Elpidio Quirino was elected to the Philippine Congress in 1919. He was part of the independence mission to Washington that freed the Philippines from American control in 1934. He then served as vice president under Manuel Roxas, becoming president upon Roxas’ death in 1948. For six years, Quirino oversaw postwar reconstruction, but his administration suffered from corruption.
Elpidio Quirino was born on November 16, 1890, in the small city of Vigan, on Luzon Island in the Philippines. His father, Don Mariano Quirino, was a warden at a provincial jail. His mother was Dona Gregoria Mendoza Rivera Quirino. Young Elpidio graduated from elementary school in nearby Caoayan. Advanced beyond his years, Elpidio became a barrio (rural village) teacher while studying at Vigan High School.
Elpidio Quirino moved to Manila and graduated from Manila High School in 1911 and then passed the civil service exam. He entered law school at the University of the Philippines, graduating in 1915, and served as secretary to Senate President Manuel Quezon, where he began his rise through the Philippine government. In 1919, he was elected to the Philippine House of Representatives. In 1925, he was elected to the Philippine Senate and was quickly given Senate committee appointments.
In 1931 Elpidio Quirino was reelected to the Senate, and in 1934 he served as a member of the Philippine Independence mission to Washington, D.C., helping secure the Tydings-McDuffie Act, which set the timetable for Philippine independence from the United States. Quirino was also one of the drafters of the Philippine constitution, which was approved in May 1935.
Elpidio Quirino ran for reelection in 1953 despite his poor health. Defense Secretary Ramon Magsaysay angrily resigned over Quirino’s alleged corruption and joined the opposition Nationalist Party. He would go on to defeat Quirino in the general election. Elpidio Quirino retired to private life and died of a heart attack in February 29, 1956.
- Elpidio Quirino Biography and Profile (Biography)