Information about San Fernando Railway Station Museum
San Fernando Railway Station Museum
The San Fernando Railway Station Museum is located in the San Fernando City Station, a defunct railway station of the Philippine National Railways (PNR) Northrail line passing through Northern and Central Luzon. The station is of historical significance as it used to be a stopping place for Filipino and American prisoners of war in 1942.
A Station of History
The Himpilang Daan Bakal ng San Fernando, the local name of the station, formed part of the Manila-Dagupan line of the old PNR and was inaugurated by Governor-General Eulogio Despujol and Archbishop of Manila Bernardino Nozaleda in 1892.
It is in this station that Jose P. Rizal, Philippine’s national hero, disembarked to meet the new members and recruits of La Liga Filipina, a civic organization he founded to establish reforms from then Spanish colonizers, also in 1892.
50 years after, in 1942, it became the final stop of almost 80,000 Filipino, American, and European soldiers and prisoners of war from their 102-kilometer Death March from Bataan. From San Fernando, they were transferred to Camp O’Donnell in Tarlac. The official operations of the railway station ceased in 1988.
Presently, the San Fernando Railway Station serves a museum housing significant memorabilia, war remnants, and photos and posters depicting historical events and important people that took place in the very station. Government efforts and concerned private individuals seek to maintain the museum to preserve its historical and cultural significance to the town of San Fernando.
In 2017, talks of a 17-station Manila-Clark Railway Station begun which could potentially revive the operations of the San Fernando Railway Station. The museum management stressed that the historical landmark will be preserved and its development will further open tourism potential.