Vintage Jeepneys of Iloilo

Powerful Essays
Topics: Iloilo City
The Vintage Jeepneys of Iloilo

by: Mikka Ella B. Perlas

Ilonggos are, by nature, artistic. They have shown this by the way they live, build their houses and produce their crafts and products.

I’m writing about the artistic jeepneys of Molo City High and SM City Proper. This topic was initially assigned to me but as I began to research on it, my attraction for the jeepneys grew. I began to see this piece of art in a different way. Its unique design and practical use as transport for Ilonggos make it a part of our everyday lives. Compared to other jeepneys, it is shorter in length. The stainless steel embossments prevail in these types of jeepneys. It is diverse from other forms of jeepneys because its ornaments are intricately done manually.

How did this icon start in the first place? How did the Ilonggos add to its distinct beauty? What are its chances of survival for the future considering the present trend of modernity and advances in technology? Will it still remain to be a part of our Ilonggo life?

I visited jeepneygang.com which gave a historical perspective on the jeepney. A fact is that this vehicle was created right after World War II as a solution to the lack of public transport. This vehicle was a transformation of the surplus “Willy Jeep” used by the Americans during the war. It became an instant success because of its affordability and practicality as a mode of transportation. A sturdy utility jeep used for warfare was turned into a colorful vehicle with metal roofing, decorated with chrome, hood ornaments, loud horns, and flashing multi-colored lights. The body was extended to accommodate more passengers and it turned into a twin-benched minibus, where the passengers had their knees almost touching each other. Theory says that the word jeeney is a conflation of “jeep” or “jitney”, another word for a public utility vehicle, or “jeep” and “knee”, referring to its crowded face-to-face seating.

This mode of

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