Jolo Island
Jolo is a volcanic island
An island or isle is any piece of sub-continental land that is surrounded by water. Very small islands such as emergent land features on atolls can be called islets, cays or keys. An island in a river or lake may be called an eyot , or holm...

 in the southwest Philippines
The Philippines , officially known as the Republic of the Philippines , is a country in Southeast Asia in the western Pacific Ocean. To its north across the Luzon Strait lies Taiwan. West across the South China Sea sits Vietnam...

. It is located in the Sulu Archipelago
Sulu Archipelago
The Sulu Archipelago is a chain of islands in the southwestern Philippines. This archipelago is considered to be part of the Moroland by the local rebel independence movement. This island group forms the northern limit of the Celebes Sea....

, between Borneo
Borneo is the third largest island in the world and is located north of Java Island, Indonesia, at the geographic centre of Maritime Southeast Asia....

 and Mindanao
Mindanao is the second largest and easternmost island in the Philippines. It is also the name of one of the three island groups in the country, which consists of the island of Mindanao and smaller surrounding islands. The other two are Luzon and the Visayas. The island of Mindanao is called The...

, and has a population of approximately 300,000 people.

Jolo, Sulu
Jolo is a municipality on the island of Jolo, and the capital and largest town of the province of Sulu. According to the 2000 census, it has a population of 87,998 people in 12,814 households. Part of its population is of Chinese descent, mainly from Singapore...

 is also the name of the town on the island which serves as the capital of the province of Sulu, within the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao
Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao
The Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao is the region, located in the Mindanao island group of the Philippines, that is composed of predominantly Muslim provinces, namely: Basilan , Lanao del Sur, Maguindanao, Sulu and Tawi-Tawi. It is the only region that has its own government...


About a third of the island's population live in the municipality
Municipalities of the Philippines
A municipality is a local government unit in the Philippines. Municipalities are also called towns . They are distinct from cities, which are a different category of local government unit...

 of Jolo.

The island is part of the Jolo Group
Jolo Group
Jolo Group is an active group of volcanoes in the island of Jolo in Southern Philippines.The Global Volcanism Program list Jolo as one of the active volcanoes in the Philippines while the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology collectively list the group as Bud Dajo, one of the cinder...

 of volcano
2. Bedrock3. Conduit 4. Base5. Sill6. Dike7. Layers of ash emitted by the volcano8. Flank| 9. Layers of lava emitted by the volcano10. Throat11. Parasitic cone12. Lava flow13. Vent14. Crater15...

es, and contains numerous volcanic cones and craters, including the active Bud Dajo
Bud Dajo
Bud Dajo , is one of the cinder cones that make up the island of Jolo and part of the Jolo Volcanic Group in the Republic of the Philippines. The extinct volcano is located southeast from the town of Jolo in Sulu province...

 cinder cone.

After a series of less-than-successful attempts during the centuries of Spanish rule in the Philippines, Spanish forces captured the city of Jolo, the seat of the Sultan of Sulu, in 1876.

On that year, the Spanish launched a massive campaign to occupy Jolo. Spurred by the need to curb slave raiding once and for all and worried about the presence of other Western powers in the south (the British had established trading centers in Jolo by the 19th century and the French were offering to purchase Basilan Island from the cash strapped government in Madrid), the Spanish made a final bid to consolidate their rule in this southern frontier. On 21 February of that year, the Spaniards assembled the largest contingent against Jolo, consisting of 9,000 soldiers, in 11 transports, 11 gunboats, and 11 steamboats. Headed by Admiral Jose Malcampo captured Jolo and established a Spanish settlement with Capt. Pascual Cervera appointed to set up a garrison and serve as military governor; He served from March 1876 to December1876 followed by Brig.Gen. Jose Paulin (December 1876-April 1877), Col Carlos Martinez (Sept 1877-Feb 1880), Col. Rafael de Rivera (1880–1881), Col. Isidro G. Soto (1881–1882), Col. Eduardo Bremon, (1882), Col. Julian Parrrado (1882–1884), Col. Francisco Castilla (1884–1886), Col. Juan Arolas (1886-18930, Col. Caesar Mattos (1893), Gen. Venancio Hernandez (1893–1896) and Col. Luis Huerta (1896–1899).

The Spaniards were never secure in Jolo so by 1878 they had fortified Jolo with a perimeter wall and tower gates, built inner forts called Puerta Blockaus, Puerta España, and Puerta Alfonso XII; and two outer fortifications named Princesa de Asturias and Torre de la Reina. Troops , including a cavalry with its own lieutenant commander, were garrisoned within the protective confine of the walls. From Jolo, in 1880 Col. Rafael Gonzales de Rivera who was appointed the governor dispatched the 6th Regiment to Siasi and Bongao islands. The Spaniards were not secure in their stronghold because it would be sporadically attacked. On 22 July 1883, it is reported that three unnamed juramentado succeeded in penetrating the Jolo town plaza and killed three Spaniards.; The word “Ajuramentado” was coined by Spanish colonel Juan Arolas after witnessing several such acts while serving duty in Jolo garrison.

The Spanish and the Sultan of Sulu signed the Spanish Treaty of Peace on July 22, 1878. The Spanish language version of the Treaty gave Spain complete sovereignty over the Sulu archipelago, this includes Basilan, while the Tausug version described a protectorate instead of an outright dependency.

The Americans arrived in 1899, and by the turn of the century, the Philippine-American War was raging in Luzon. So as not to spread out their forces, the Americans employed the classic divide-and-rule tactic. Maj. Gen. E.S. Otis, commander-in-chief of the US Forces, sent Gen. Bates to negotiate with the Sultan of Sulu. Known as the Bates treaty, the agreement provided for the exercise of American authority over the Sulu archipelago in exchange for the recognition of Muslim culture and religion.

The Bates Treaty of 1899 between Sulu Sultan Jamalul Kiram II and American Brigadier GeneralJohn C. Bates, further acknowledged American administrative control over the Sulu Archipelago, including Basilan.

Initially Sultan Kiram was disappointed by the hand-over of control to the Americans and had expected to regain sovereignty over the Sulu archipelago after the defeat of the Spanish. Bates' main goal though, was to guarantee the Sultanate's neutrality in the Philippine-American War, and to establish order in Mindanao. After some negotiations, the Bates Treaty was signed.

This treaty was based on the earlier Spanish treaty, and it retained the translation discrepancy: the English version described a complete dependency, while the Tausug version described a protectorate. Although the Bates Treaty granted more powers to the Americans than the original Spanish treaty, the treaty was still criticized in America for granting too much autonomy to the Sultan. One particular clause, which recognized the Moro practice of slavery, also raised eyebrows in Washington, D.C. Bates later admitted that the treaty was merely a stop-gap measure, signed only to buy time until the war in the north was ended and more forces could be brought to bear in the south.The peace created by the Bates Treaty did not last, however. This became evident when the Muslims repudiated the Moro province, a politico-military government in Mindanao lasting from 1903 to 1914, and the Moro Rebellion soon broke out. It is important to note that barely two months before the creation of the Moro province, the American colonial government declared and classified all unoccupied lands as public lands. Immediately after the declaration, American investments entered Mindanao and mass migration of Christians was encouraged. (Rodil 1985:4).

Fighting on the island flared up again in February 2005 when between 4,000 and 5,000 Philippine troops clashed with around 800 Islamist
Islamism also , lit., "Political Islam" is set of ideologies holding that Islam is not only a religion but also a political system. Islamism is a controversial term, and definitions of it sometimes vary...

 militants from the Abu Sayyaf
Abu Sayyaf
Abu Sayyaf also known as al-Harakat al-Islamiyya is one of several military Islamist separatist groups based in and around the southern Philippines, in Bangsamoro where for almost 30 years various Muslim groups have been engaged in an insurgency for an independent province in the country...

 group, along with followers of Nur Misuari
Nur Misuari
Nur Misuari is a moro politician and former leader of the Moro National Liberation Front. He completed his education through academic scholarships at the University of the Philippines and became a student activist...

. Up to 12,000 people were thought to have fled the fighting. Fighting is still continuing (2009).

See also

  • Active volcanoes in the Philippines
    Active volcanoes in the Philippines
    Active is commonly termed for volcanoes with historical eruptions. Moreover, the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology classify active volcanoes in the country as having erupted within historical times , with accounts of these eruptions documented by man; or having erupted within the...

  • Potentially active volcanoes in the Philippines
  • Inactive volcanoes of the Philippines
    Inactive volcanoes of the Philippines
    This is a list of inactive volcanoes in the Philippines. The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology currently lists 355 volcanoes in the Philippines as inactive. The Smithsonian Institution's Global Volcanism Program does not list inactive volcanoes...

  • Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology
    Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology
    The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology is a Philippine national institution dedicated to provide information on the activities of volcanoes, earthquakes and tsunamis, as well as other specialized information and services primarily for the protection of life and property and in...

  • Jolo, Sulu
    Jolo, Sulu
    Jolo is a municipality on the island of Jolo, and the capital and largest town of the province of Sulu. According to the 2000 census, it has a population of 87,998 people in 12,814 households. Part of its population is of Chinese descent, mainly from Singapore...

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