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January 1, 2018

Sampaga, Balayan, Batangas: Historical Data

Full transcription of the so-called “Historical Data” for the barrio of Pook, Balayan, 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 OF SAMPAGA

1. The present official name of the barrio is SAMPAGA.

2. As far as could be recollected by the residents of the barrio, Sampaga has always been the name of the barrio. This name was probably derived from the name of a flower (the sampaga which is more popularly known as the sampaguita) of which the place abounds. Under the territorial jurisdiction of this barrio are the sitios of Aplaya, Durungao, Caybunga, and Langangan.

3. No definite date of the establishment is available from the historical records or from the inhabitants of the barrio. This was an indication that the barrio might have been populated on or about the time of the arrival of the Spaniards as an offspring of the main settlement of Balayan.

4. There are no available records which can help shed light on this interesting data. There has been so much immigration and intermarriages that the tracing of the original families if done could only result in confusion.

5. The list of Teniente del Barrios from the earliest time to date:
Vicente Buhay Benito Banaag
Francisco Cabatian Aniano de Padua
Quintin Panganiban Cayetano Mayuga
Mariano Brotonel Modesto Mayuga
Ireno Adove  
6. There is no barrio or sitio within the jurisdiction of Sampaga which is now depopulated or extinct.

7. There are no historical sites, structures, buildings, or old ruins worthy of mention.

8. None

9. There are no available records about the revolution nor are there resources by which persons could recall the destruction caused by the Spaniards during the Revolutionary period, but nearly all the people recall the terrible days of the Japanese occupation.

(a) As a rule, there was little destruction of properties during the Japanese occupation although there were quite a few people killed and wounded by the local Japanese garrison. Among those killed was Mariano Betis of Apalaya (sitio of Sampaga) who was shot and killed just because he shouted “Hapon” and started to run when he met some Japanese soldiers on patrol. Another was one Arcadio who was supposed to carry a letter to the Americans who had just landed at Nasugbu and was shot as he tried to cross the Japanese lines established at the Gimalas River. Julian de Viga, a native of Langangan (sitio of Sampaga) was seized by the Japanese soldiers stationed at nearby Gimalas for refusing to cooperate and whose limbs were severed one by one and otherwise tortured to death.

There were many who were wounded or tortured by the Japanese for suspected guerrilla activities or non-cooperation. Among them were Alfonso Panganiban, one time Chief

[p. 2]

of Police of Balayan, who was shot and wounded by unknown assailants, and Alejandro Dastas, who was bayoneted and left for dead when he refused to give the Japanese what they wanted.

(b) The bridges across the Dacanlao River and the Gimalas River, which were the only public properties destroyed, were rebuilt through the aid of the U. S. War Damage Funds in 1950.

10. Among the simple barrio fold, and even in some homes whose members have known education, there still persists the traditional method of courtship. The young man is required to do some sort of service to the family of the girl he wants to marry. He might bring firewood, or he might fetch water for the family of the girl every day. The young might invite others and hold a “pasaknong” or “bayanihan,” when he helps the girl’s family by preparing their fields for planting. The young man is discouraged to continue this service if he is not sure to win his lady-love, but in the other case, there usually follows the “bulungan” or whispering, when the parents of the young man goes to the girl’s house and ask for the hand of the girl in marriage. Then, they set the date for the wedding, which is usually celebrated with a lavish feast.



An interesting belief of the superstitious people is the belief of the pati-anak, the belief that the spirit of a dead child who was not baptized cannot rest and goes about crying. So a newly-born child will have a buhos-tubig (literarlly, pouring water) which means emergency baptism and can be performed by anybody.

11. There are many legends and beliefs of the simple barrio folk, although most of those beliefs and legends are not original and are shared by the people of other barrios and towns. It [is] believed that when there is a new moon and when the moon crescent is toward the sea, there would be plenty of rain for the month. They try to explain away eclipses by saying that the moon and the sun are fighting for supremacy. Because they do not understand the causes of lightning and thunder, they say that God is angry and is shouting at them. A rainbow after a rain is believed that when a conceiving woman is always eating twin bananas, she would deliver twins also. Some people still believe in the anting-anting or gayuma, but because there are no people who hold these charms, this belief is waning.

12. There are no popular songs, games, or amusements which are peculiar to the barrio of Sampaga. The most popular songs sung by the people are the kundiman. The most popular game and amusement of the people is the playing of softball.

13. Riddles and puzzles:

a. My little dog has its bone cut. (cashew)

b. I bought a slave higher than I am. (hat)

c. What in the forest has branches without roots? (horns)

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d. Giving-giving, house has walls full of holes. (bithay of winnowing basket)

e. The hair of the king could not be parted. (river)

f. Without roots and branches, full of flowers. (stairs)

g. My horse is tied at the tail. (needle)

h. A piece of bamboo, full of death. (gun)

i. What is between heaven and earth? (and)

14. Proverbs and sayings:

a. Ang batong gugulong-gulong ay hindi nagkakalumot.

b. The wounded hero becomes braver.

c. What shall I do with the hay if the horse is already dead?

d. Plant winds and you will harvest storms.

e. You can harvest something if you plant anything.

f. The sleeping shrimp is carried away by the current.

g. The quiet river is deep.

h. The good follower is in the command.

i. There is no unwilling virgin for the patient praying for a lover.

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

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