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Philippines: Jose S. Libornio

Research Materials on Jose S. Libornio


Born in Manila on December 5, 1858, Jose Sabas Libornio was an important figure and an unsung hero in Hawaiian history. Libornio, a Filipino composer, headed the Royal Hawaiian Band during the overthrow of the Hawaiian Kingdom in 1893. He was a close and loyal friend of Queen Liliʻuokalani, the last monarch of Hawaiʻi, whose compositions may have included the Hawaiian protest song “Kaulana Nā Pua” (“Famous are the Flowers/Children”). The song was a collaboration with Hawaiian songwriter Eleanor Wright Kekoaohiwaikalani Prendergrast.

Libornio left Honolulu for Peru after the overthrow. While in Peru, Libornio received Peruvian President Nicolas de Pierola's apportionment as Director General de las Bandas de Music's del Ejercito. He wrote Peru's second national anthem, "March de Banderas." 

This section contains resources Jose S. Libornio that are found at UHM, online (open-access) and at the Biblioteca National del Peru. Please note, that this guide lists the basic resources and does not contain all of the materials for research.  


UHM Database - Proquest 

Compoc, K., Fujikane, C., Franklin, C., Gonzalez, V., Goodyear-Ka’opua, N., & Lyons, L. (2017). Emergent Allies: Decolonizing Hawai`i From a Filipin(a) Perspective [ProQuest Dissertations Publishing].

In Kim Compoc’s words, “This dissertation maps a critical terrain of anti-imperialist Filipin@s in Hawai’i from 1990-2015. I investigate those Filipin@ writers, community leaders and activists who take seriously the role of (neo)colonialism in the ongoing fight for self-determination in both Hawai’i and the Philippines.” While Compoc’s dissertation highlights the anti-imperialist Filipin@s of the 1990’s to 2015, she begins her story by reminding readers of Jose Sabas Libornio’s heroic actions in support of Queen Liliuokalani and the Hawaiian Sovereignty in 1893.  


Online (open-access) 

Manalo-Camp, A. K. (2019, August 26). Shared Histories Between Filipinos And Hawaiians. Retrieved from

Manalo-Camp sheds light into the history of the Filipin@s in Hawai’i. He writes, “But Filipinos have a proud heritage in the Philippines and in Hawai’i — a heritage that often runs parallel to the experience of Kanaka Maoli. Like the shame felt by local Filipinos, there was a point too in Kanaka Maoli history where even the term “kanaka” was associated with being backwards (read: brown).”


Republic of the Philippines (2016). Jose Sabas Libornio Ibarra. Philippines: Presidential Broadcast Staff - Radio Television Malacanang. Retrieved from

The Republic of the Philippines acknowledges Libornio's accomplishments. "Jose Sabas Libornio Ibarra was a Filipino composer behind Peru’s “Marcha de Banderas” — considered as the second civic anthem of Peru. However, little is known of its author despite his invaluable contributions to Peru.

Biblioteca National del Peru

Zlatar Stambuk, J. (2015). José Sabas Libornio Ibarra: Autor de la Marcha de Banderas (1st). Lima: Instituto de Estudios Históricos Aerospaciales del Perú.  

Perú. Escuela Naval. Banda. (1975). Himno Nacional del Perú ; Marcha de banderas [grabación sonora] /[compositor], José Bernardo Alcedo, José de la Torre Ugarte; José S. Libornio. [Lima]: Sono Radio. This material is a sound recording.