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January 3, 2018

Kapito, Lian, Batangas: Historical Data

Full transcription of the so-called “Historical Data” for the barrio of Kapito in the Municipality of Lian, Batangas, the original scanned documents at the National Library of the Philippines Digital Collections not having OCR or optical character recognition properties. This transcription has been edited for grammar, spelling and punctuation where possible. The original pagination is provided for citation purposes.

[p. 1]

HISTORY AND CULTURAL LIFE OF THE BARRIO

Part One: History

Near the long hill that ranges in the southeastern part of Lian, Batangas is a barrio officially named Kapito.

Ever since its existence, this barrio has been popularly known by that name. How this barrio came to be called “Kapito” is a simple story. Since that time, this barrio was covered with wild forest. Wild trees and grass covered the place. In this place, there were few inhabitants. With the increase of the inhabitants, those trees that grew in the place had been cut down. As the years went on, [the] hills were covered with trees. So it appeared that the long hills seemed to be divided into seven parts. As the inhabitants thought for [the] appreciated name to be given to the place, it was agreed upon to be called “Kapito,” which became its popular and official name to the present. It is obvious that they derived the name from the long hill which seems to be divided into seven parts.

Kapito was established in the year 1912.

There were but very few pioneers in this place. They were Luis Sanchez, Tranquilino Sanchez, Torobio Mendoza, Silvestre Guevarra and Juan Hernandez. These men, together with their families, began the history and cultural life of the barrio.

This is the arrangement chronologically of the barrio tenientes from the date established up to the present.
1.  Alipio Catapang 5.  Felix Urge
2.  Senon Malabanan 6.  Mariano Guevarra
3.  Arcadio Mercado 7.  Cosme Malabanan
4.  Luriano Ilagan 8.  Meliton Hernandez
No old barrio or sitio within the jurisdiction has been depopulated.

There is no historical site, structure and old ruins in the place that could be seen. It was still uninhabited during the pre-Spanish and Spanish regime and by its establishment. So, facts and events could not be gathered from the present inhabitants.

Under the American occupation, from the year 1900 to 1919, there was no progress in the place for there was no school, no chapel for religious purposes and only a portion of the land was cultivated. There was no store at that time. The number of houses of light materials increased.

In the year 1912, a barrio lieutenant was appointed, the first time for Kapito to have a peace officer. The number of houses increased. The wide areas of land were cultivated. The standard of living grew better. There were some stores. What is interesting to note was the rapid increase of the children.

It was only after World War II, in the year 1948, that a primary school was opened.

[p. 2]

A. As stated above, the barrio is still young that no destruction of lives, properties and institutions can be noted from the year 1896 to 1900.

From the year 1941 to 1948, Japanese occupation in the Philippines, Kapito and its sitio, Pinagbanderahan, became one of the temporary camps of the Japanese. The Japanese soldiers wrought [brought?] destruction to properties. They confiscated rice, pigs, chickens, cereals, vegetables and even cattle. There were few [a] inhabitants killed who refused to give up their belongings.

B. Some inhabitants received war damage from the War Damage Commission. Others did not receive. They failed to file claims and received nothing. No other measures and accomplishments toward rehabilitation are being undertaken following World War II.

Part Two: Folkways

Traditions, Customs and Practices in Domestic and Social Life

Birth

Matapos na ilabas ang bata ay isang taong matalino ang naglilipat ng bata sa banig na malinis upang ang bata ay maging matalino. (Immediately after birth, an intelligent person is chosen to transfer the child to a clean mat so as to become an intelligent person.)

Baptism

Kinabihasnang busan ng tubig ang bata bago tuluyang binyagan sa simbahan. Kung tawagin ay buhos tubig. (It is a common practice to pour water on the baby before baptism in the church.)

Ang ninong o ninang ng bata ay palihim na naglalagay ng kuwarta sa kamay ng bata. Ito ay tinatawag na pakimkim. (The godfather or godmother of the child secretly puts on the hand of the child a certain amount of money.)

Courtship

Ang pagsisilbi sa tahanan ng babae upang maibig ang isang binata ay isang kaugalian. (Rendering services to the family of the girl to win her love is a common practice.)

Ang paghingi ng sari-sari tulad ng bahay para sa bagong kasal, tugtugan at handaan sa araw ng kasal at iba pang bagay ay bahagi ng panunuyo ng isang binata. Ang mga kahilingan ng magulang ng babae ay dapat tuparin upang matuloy ang kasalan. (The request for a house, feast, orchestra and others by the parents of the girl is a part of courtship. The suitor has to fulfill the wishes of the girl’s parents to realize the marriage.)

Marriage

Ang pagbibigay ng pasunod sa bagong kasal ng angkan ng bawat panig ay karaniwang ginagawa. (Giving dowry to the newlyweds is a common practice.)

[p. 3]

Ang kaugaliang paghahanda sa araw ng kasal ay hindi pa nalilimot sa ngayon. (Giving a wedding party is customary up to now.)

Death and Burial



Matapos mailibing ang patay ay ipinagdarasal ang kaligtasan ng kanyang kaluluwa. Ito ay ginagawa sa loob ng siyam na gabing sunod-sunod. Sa ika-siyam na araw ay naghahanda para sa nakikiramay. Ang mga gawaing ito ay umaaliw sa naiwan ng namatay. (After the burial, solemn prayers [are said] for nine consecutive nights for the salvation of the dead’s soul. At the ninth day, a feast is given for those who will come. This practice serves as a consolation to the bereaved family.)

Beliefs and Superstitions

Masama ang maligo sa araw ng martes sapagka’t kung dapuan ng sakit ay malubha. (It is bad to take a bath on Tuesday because they will get a serious disease.)

Kapag ang mga bata ay naglalaro ng trumpo, ito ay tanda ng darating na taggutom. (When the children play spin-tops, this is a sign that hunger is to come.)

Kapag ang bata ay tumulog ng taob, ito ay pangitaing ang ama at ina ay hindi na magtatagal. (When the child sleeps upside down, the mother and father will not live long.)

Popular Songs, Games, Amusements

Songs:
Ang Bayan Kong Pilipinas, Ang Puso Kong Wasak, at Pandango.

Games and Amusements – Ballgames, Patentero (Tubigan), Wrestling, Sikio.

Puzzles and Riddles

1. Ano ang pinakamasarap sa isda? (Sagot – lagi siya sa tubig.) (What is best for the fish? Answer – always in the water.)
2. Ano ang tuka ng manok? (Sagot – buto.) (What is the bill of the chicken? Answer – bone.)
3. Ano ang kaunaunahang ginagawa ng babae sa umaga? (Sagot – bumangon.) (What is the very first thing a girl does in the morning? Answer – to wake up.)

Riddles:

1. Sulong-sulongi mama aking ibibika. – (Sagot – gunting.) (Go ahead and I will open it. Answer – scissors.)
2. Dalawang mabilog, malayo ang abot. (Sagot – mata.) (Two round objects can reach far ahead. Answer – eyes.)
3. Puno’y kahoy, gitna’y bakal, dulo’y kamatayan. (Sagot – baril.) (The handle is wood, the middle is iron, the point is death. Answer – gun.)

[p. 4]

Proverbs and Sayings

1. Kapag ang tubig ay malalim, asahan mo at matining. (Still water is deep.)
2. Ang bayaning masugatan ay nag-iibayo ang tapang. (A hero increases his courage when he is wounded.)
3. Mabuti pa ang matakaw kay sa magnanakaw. (It is better to be a glutton than to be a thief.)
4. Lumakad ng matulin, kung matinik ay malalim. (To walk fast, thorn is deep.)
5. Nakikita ang butas ng karayom, ang butas ng palakol ay hindi. (He can see the hole of a needle, but the hole of an axe cannot be seen.)

One method of measuring time by the barrio people is by the position of the sun, a bamboo pole, or by the shadow of a tree. At noon, they could tell the time exactly twelve o’clock because the shadow is centered to the object. Others tell the time by the position of the sun.

Resource person: [Sgd.] Fortunato Guevarra

Part Three: Other Information

No information on books and documents treating of the Philippines could be gathered in view of the fact that the place is devoid of these materials.

It is regrettable to state that no Filipino author was born or residing in Kapito. This is due to the absence of educational institutions that the inhabitants were illiterate that the place was not able to produce an author.

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Notes and references:
Transcribed from “History and Cultural Life of the Barrio (Kapito)” 1953, online at the National Library of the Philippines Digital Collections.

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