The Manila Cathedral, also known as the minor basilica of the Immaculate Conception, was the seat of the Archbishop of Manila during the Spain Spanish colonial period in the Philippines, and still remains the ecclesiastical seat of the Archdiocese of Manila.
The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Manila, with jurisdiction over all the Philippine Islands and suffrage to the See of Mexico, was erected in 1578.
The first bishop, Domingo de Salazar (born 1512), arrived in Sept., 1581. The magnificent fourth cathedral was constructed in 1654 to 1671 under Archbishop Miguel Poblete.
It was severely damaged in 1863 by a very strong earthquake that even toppled the Palace of the Governor General of the Philippines. In 1880, another earthquake toppled its bell tower and since then until in 1959, the cathedral remained tower less.