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Trivia Tours: Pampanga!

The name "La Pampanga" was given by the Spaniards who found the early natives living near the river banks. It also served as the capital of the archipelago for two years from 1762-1764 during the British invasion of Manila. However, history shows evidence of the province of Pampanga itself being a descendant of what was known back then as theKingdom of Tondo, or the Luzon Empire. The word pampang, from which the province's name originates, means river bank. Its creation in 1571 makes it the first Spanish province in the Philippines. The Province of Pampanga is the culinary capital of the Philippines.
Pampanga is served by the Diosdado Macapagal International Airport, which is located at Clark Freeport Zone in Angeles City, some 16 kilometers north of the provincial capital.

Pampanga, one of the richest provinces in the Philippines, was re-organized as a province by the Spaniards on December 11, 1571. For governmental control and taxation purposes, the Spanish authorities subdivided Pampanga into towns (pueblos), which were further subdivided into districts (barrios) and in some cases into royal and private estates (encomiendas).

Due to excessive abuses committed by some grantees of private estates, the King of Spain prohibited in 1574 the awarding of private estates (encomiendas). However, the royal decree was not fully enforced until the year 1620. In a report of Philippine encomiendas on June 20, 1591, Spanish Governor Gomez Perez Dasmarinas reported to the King of Spain that La Pampanga's encomiendas were Bataan, Betis y Lubao, Macabebe, Candava, Apalit, Calumpit, Malolos, Binto, Guiguinto, Caluya, Bulacan and Mecabayan. The encomiendas of La Pampanga at that time had eighteen thousand six hundred and eighty whole tributes.
Pampanga which is about 850 square miles (2,200 km2) in area and presently inhabited by more than 1.5 million people, had its present borders drawn in 1873. During the Spanish regime it was one of the richest Philippine provinces. Manila and its surrounding region were then primarily dependent on Pampangan agricultural, fishery, and forestry products as well as on the supply of skilled workers. As other Luzon provinces were created due to increases in population, some well-established Pampanga towns were lost to new emerging provinces in Central Luzon.
During the 17th century, The Dutch recruited men from Pampanga as mercenaries served the Royal Netherlands East Indies Army, known asPapangers[1] contingent which was a part of the larger Mardijkers community. Their legacy can still be found in North Jakarta[2], however there are no traces of their descendants, except for a small community currently lives in Kampung Tugu.
The historic province of Bataan which was founded in 1754 under the administration of Spanish Governor General Pedro Manuel Arandia, absorbed from the province of Pampanga the municipalities of Abucay, Balanga, Dinalupihan, Llana Hermosa, Orani, Orion, Pilar, and Samal.
The old Pampanga towns of Aliaga, Cabiao, Gapan, San Antonio and San Isidro were ceded to the province of Nueva Ecija in 1848 during the term of Spanish Governor-General Narciso Claveria y Zaldua. The municipality of San Miguel de Mayumo of Pampanga was yielded to the province of Bulacan in the same provincial boundary configuration in 1848.
In 1860, the northern towns of Bamban, Capas, Concepcion, Victoria, Tarlac, Mabalacat, Magalang, Porac and Floridablanca were separated from Pampanga and were placed under the jurisdiction of a military command called Comandancia Militar de Tarlac. However, in 1873, the four latter towns were returned to Pampanga and the other five towns became municipalities of the newly created Province of Tarlac.
On December 8, 1941, Japanese planes bombed Clark Air base marking the beginning of the invasion of Pampanga.
Between 1941 and 1942, occupying Japanese forces began entering Pampanga.

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