Wawa, Batangas (Town), Batangas: Historical Data - Batangas History, Culture and Folklore Wawa, Batangas (Town), Batangas: Historical Data - Batangas History, Culture and Folklore

Wawa, Batangas (Town), Batangas: Historical Data

Full transcription of the so-called “Historical Data” for the barrio of Wawa, Batangas Town, 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]
Historical Data

1. Present official name of the barrio – Wawa.

2. Popular names of the barrio present and past, derivation and meanings of these names (Names of sitios included within the territorial jurisdiction of the barrio):

The present barrio of Wawa is just adjacent to the many barrios along the shores of Batangas Bay. It is recalled that this barrio was popular among the sailors for the simple reason that they frequently sought refuge on one of her rivers during inclement or stormy weather. The aforementioned river is deep, wide, and long in her aquatic appearance. Because the river is a branch of the Calumpang River by way of the seafront, the name Wawa was naturally adopted.

Kanluran, Silangan, and Kaingin are the prominent sitios of this barrio. The first two names refer to the geographical divisions while Kaingin refers to the woody southeastern portion of the barrio now thickly inhabited.

3. Date of establishment:
The authentic date as regards the establishment of the barrio is uncertain. However, as far as the old folks could remember, it is believed that it was established since the middle part of the year 1900 [probably 1800].

4. Original Families:
Old folks strictly adhere to the fact that since 1901, the now late Gregorio Fran was the first settler of the barrio. Since then, many houses have been built and even town residents are inclined to build their own vacation resorts in this place.

5. List of Tenientes del Barrio:
The first “teniente del barrio” or barrio lieutenant was Jose Serrano of Calumpang, who was succeeded by Silbino Alea of the same place. Then Eliseo Fran, Clemente Maranan, Juan Berania, Florentino Parto, Simeon Evangelio, Pedro Atienza who served respectably for such appointive post. The present incumbent is Nazario Berania. Their term of office is usually long and it is said that the first three heads served for as long as ten years each. However, speaking of the present, the barrio heads are usually changed or replaced as frequent as the mayor changes.

[p. 2]

6. Story of old sitios within the barrio’s jurisdiction which are not depopulated or extinct:
It is the consensus belief that there are no sitio’s within the barrio’s jurisdiction which are now depopulated or rather extinct.

7. Date of historical sites, structures, buildings, old ruins, etc.
As far as the barrio of Wawa is concerned, no historical sites, structures, buildings or old ruins can be mentioned for recollection purposes. Only the bridge linking Wawa and the western part of Cuta which was established during the Spanish regime can be mentioned.

8. Important facts, incidents or events that took place during the Spanish Occupation:
A. Educational
Catechism was taught in this barrio as part of the educational treatment given by old folks here. How to read and write Tagalog was taught among children. Roman Serrano was the grand old teacher of this barrio.

B. Religion
The religion adopted and adhered to was the Roman Catholic religion. The barrio people believe this as the most dominant religion in the Philippines.

C. Economics
Fishing is the prime occupation of the people. The “pukot,” “sima” and other primitive ways of fishing were utilized to earn a living.

9. Important facts and events during the American Occupation up to World War II.
A. Politics – Barrio folks did not indulge much on political activities. Only barrio heads were duly appointed by the mayor usually recommended by the councilor assigned to such barrio.

B. Education – In 1931, a one-room school building was erected in this barrio. Since then, pupils learned to read and write and say their prayers. Sometimes, they went to private tutors to understand and memorize the Cartilla. At present, the school building is the result of the remodeling done during 1937.

[p. 3]

C. Religion – Roman Catholic religion is still the need and cry of their soul. However, during the latter part of 1935, Iglesia ni Cristo was mildly introduced in this barrio. Some were converted to this religion.

D. Economics – Fishing and fish retailing are still their means of livelihood. Occasionally, some took interest in farming, others became all-around merchants.

E. Social – The local social gatherings consist of wedding, birthday and baptismal parties. Fiestas call for a jubilation among the barrio folks.

Important events that took place:
1900 – Cholera and dysentery epidemics spread unexpectedly in the barrio.
1926 – During the American administration in the Islands, there was an appalling event that took place in the province of Batangas. Adjoining towns and barrios were likewise greatly damaged by such havoc. Of course, history will tell us that such had been so devastating; and to the Wawa old folks, that natural catastrophe will remain unforgettable. Indeed, that furious flood of 1926 almost left the barrio residents homeless. It took properties and lives in the most exacting manner in human experience. The present Wawa is now occupied again by strongly built houses and happy, prosperous residents.

Important Events and Facts During and After World War II
A. Events
It is recalled that before the outbreak of the second global conflict, coastal reinforcement was made by the Philippine Army soldiers along the coastal shores of Batangas. The barrio of Wawa was one of them that received military protection.

During the incipiency of US liberation, the barrio school of Wawa suffered damages from serial strafing. US PT boats made also shelling along the coastal shores of Wawa in the belief that the enemy troops were concentrated in this barrio.

Destruction of Lives, Properties and Institutions 1896-1900
I. Loss of Lives
a. Caused by epidemic (choldera-dysentery) – 15 persons
b. Caused by flood – 26 persons

[p. 4]

II. Properties lost caused by typhoons and floods – approximately ₱4,000.00
III. Institutions lost – one room schoolhouse made of light materials - ₱50.00

I. In 1941-1945, properties lost especially during July, 1944, the Japanese ransacked the barrio, said loss was approximately ₱1,000.00 in the form of food and property.
Institutions lost – None, except that the barrio schoolhouse suffered material damages.

B. Report on measures, accomplishment toward rehabilitation and construction following World War II.
1946-1953 – Construction of about 50 houses (residential) which amounted to approximately ₱20,000.00.
Proposed measures –
1. Construction of road to Wawa.
2. Installation of water systems.


1. Traditions, customs and practices in domestic life as well as social life; birth, baptism, courtship, marriage, death, burial; visits, festivals, punishments, etc.
2. Myths, legends, beliefs, interpretations, superstitions, origin of the world, land, mountains and caves, seas, lakes, rivers; plants, trees, animals, sun, moon, stars, eclipses, earthquakes, lightning and thunder, clouds, wind, rain, storms, changes of climates, other natural phenomena; first man and woman, birth of twins or more, sickness, witchcraft, magic, divination, etc.
3. Popular songs, games and amusements
4. Puzzles and riddles
5. Proverbs and sayings
6. Methods of measuring time; special calendar
7. Other folktales

Traditions, customs and practices in domestic and social life in Wawa, Batangas

Mga kaugalian at karaniwang gawain sa kabukiran ng tao sa Wawa, Batangas

[p. 5]

I. Birth – Panganganak
1. The services of an unlicensed midwife are hired by an expectant mother.
Kinakailangan ng isang manganganak ang hilot.
2. The whole body of the newly-born child is wrapped in a clean diaper to prevent exposure.
Binabalot ng malinis na lampin ang bagong anak upang mapangalagaan ito sa ano mang sakit.
3. The baby is not given a mild bath until the cord falls of or heals.
Hindi pinapaliguan ang bata hangga’t di napuputol o gumagaling ang pusod.

II. Baptism – Pagbibinyag
1. Baptism that time was quite different from now owing to their original traditions. The newly-born child is immediately baptized and [the] baptismal ceremony is usually done at sunset at the parents’ house.
2. Today, the sponsor buys the baptismal dress, the sponsor having been decided at once by the parents after the birth of the child.
3. The sponsor, if [a] man, should fasten his belt tightly to lengthen the life of the child as this was their old custom.

Ang bagong anak ay pinabibinyagan kaagad at kalimitan ay sa hapon ang binyag.
Ang maghahawak ang siyang bumibili ng damit para sa bata.
Ang maghahawak kung lalaki ay kinakailangang magbagting ng kanyang sinturon upang humaba ang buhay ng bata.

III. Courtship – Panliligaw
1. Courtship that time spelled absolute respect and reverence to the lady’s parents as evidenced by the fact that the imploring suitor had to kneel down on his knees when giving respects to the parents of the girl.
Malabis na paggalang sa mga magulang ng babae ang iginagawad ng mga namimintuho sapagaka’t kinakailangang pang lumuhod ng pantay ang tuhod kung ang mga ito’y dumadalaw o bumibisita sa kanila.
2. The specified time for courtship is usually in the evening.
Sa gabi ang dapat na panahon upang sila’y mamulong.

[p. 6]

IV. Marriage – Pagkakasal
1. Sometimes, the bridegroom presents a dowry to the parents of the prospective bride.
Kalimitan ay nagbibigay ng “bilang” o bigay-kaya ang ikakasal na lalaki sa mga magulang ng babae.
2. The neighboring folks give their due share by offering their help in preparations for the wedding party.
Ang mga kahanggan ay kusang tumutulong sa paghahanda para sa kasal na idaraos.
3. Newlyweds are showered with money publicly by relatives and guests as a part of their gift.
Sinasabugan ng kwarta o pilak ng kamag-anak o bisita sa harap ng maraming tao ang ikinasal.
4. When the marriage rites are terminated, the couple usually rushes to their house to light candles and to witness for themselves which of their candles will burn out first. It was believed that the candle that goes out of light first will mean early death for the owner of that candle.

V. Death – Kamatayan                     Burial – Paglilibing
1. A whole night and even longer than such is spent in watching over the corpse before burial.
Magdamag o matagal pa sa rito ang ginugugol sa pagbabantay sa patay bago ito ilibing.
2. There must be church rites before the burial.
Bago ilibing ang patay ay kinakailangang ito’y dalhin sa simbahan upang mabigyan ng kaukulang pananalangin.
3. The bereaved family or the family of the deceased never file their plates after eating for nine days after the death occurred.
Ang mga pinggan kinakainan ng naulilang mag-anak ay hindi pinapagpatong-patong hangga’t di nakakapagsiyam.

VI. Visits – Pagdalaw
1. The sick is visited by his neighbors.
Ang may sakit ay binibisita o dinadalaw ng mga kahanggan.
2. Cigarettes and/or confectionaries are offered to visitors.
Mga sigarilyo o matamis ang siyang idinudulot ng may bahay sa dumadalaw.

VII. Household – Pamamahay
1. The stairs of houses in this barrio face the east, north or south. Seldom are the stairs

[p. 7]

made to face west.
Ang hagdanan ng mga bahay dito ay nakaharap sa silangan, hilaga, or ibaba. Bihira ang sa kanluran nakaharap.

Superstitions – Pamahiin

Kapag ang ibang layang-layang ay lumilipad ng mababa, iyan ay tanda na may masamang panahon.

It is believed that when swallows fly low, it is a sign of bad weather.

Kapag ang pusa o kuting ay nanghihilamos sa duyo ay tanda ng may darating na bisita o panauhin.

When a cat or kitten washes or scratches its face, it is a sign that visitors will be coming.

Ang manganganak na tao ay hindi dapat umupo sa hagdanan.

It is believed that a conceiving woman must not sit at the stairs.

Hindi dapat sa ikakasal na babae na magsukat ng kakasalang-damit. Yaon ay mangangahulugang di pagkatuloy ng kasal.

It is advised to a prospective bride not to wear or don her bridal gown before the wedding. It may mean postponement of [the] marriage or change of idea.

Favorite songs – Kinatutuwaang mga awit

Leron, Leron, Beloved

Leron, Leron, beloved
Up a tall papaya tree
He climbed with basket gay
That held his love for me
The tip-tip branch he touched
It broke off with a click
Ah, what evil luck
Please choose another, quick!

Leron, Leron, Sinta

Leron, Leron, sinta, umakyat sa papaya,
Dala-dala’y buslo, sisidlan ng sinta,
Pagdating sa dulo, nabakli ang sanga
Kapus kapalaran, humanap ng iba.

[p. 8]

Awit ng Nangingisda

Wala ng mahirap
Kaparis ng mandaragat
Kalaban ay puyat
Sampu ng hanging malakas
Lubha’t amihan
O kaya’y hangin sa silangan
Sa lakas ng pananagwan
Halow mabawi ang baywang.

Amusements common in Wawa – Mga kasayahang karaniwang idinaraos sa Wawa

Kapag may pistang idinaraos sa nayon ng Wawa, sari-saring palarao ang ginaganap ng mga taga nayon upang lalong mapatingkad nila ang kasayahan ng nayon. Isa sa mga palarong ito ay ang tinatawag na “sibatan ng singsing sa dagat.” Ilang bangkang sinasagwan o ginagamit. Ang mga bangkang ito’y daraan sa ilalim ng arkong nakatayo sa dagat. Sa arkong ito nakabitin ang mga singsing na may kabit na nakapulong laso. Paramihan ng makukuhang laso ang mga katimpalak, at ang may pinakamaraming sibat na singsing ang siyang nagkakamit ng gantimpala. Mayroon ding tinatawag na pareha ng bangka. Ang mga bangka ay sabay-sabay na aalis at unahan itong makakarating sa isang hangganan. Mayron pa ring “huego de crubata” na tinatampukan ng pagtatali ng mga dalaga ng kurbata sa binata at kung sinong makakapagtali kaagad ng mahusay at makakarating sa hanggahan ay siyang binibigyan ng gantimpala.

During the barrio fiestas, different games are sponsored by barrio officials. Of the many games that are being held, boat racing, “huego de anillo” on the sea, “huego de anillo” on horseback, and “huego de krubata” are among the best and most interesting.

Mahilig din ang mga tao rito sa mga larong pampalakas tulad ng baseball o softball, volleyball, atbp. Ginagamit nila ang palaruan ng paaralan sa pagsasanay.

School playgrounds are also utilized for sports and games by young men.

Mga bugtong ng Wawa – Common riddles

1. Dalawang magkakapatid, tig-isa ang silid – balintatao.

[p. 9]

There are two brothers.
But they have separate rooms. Retina of the eyes.

2. May binti walang hita
May balbas walang baba
May mata walang mukha. Tubo

It has legs but no thigh
It has [a] moustache without [a] chin
It has eyes without [a] face. Sugarcane.

3. Isang bahay ng mayaman
Napasok ng magnanakaw
Nakuha ang kayamanan
Walang nakibo sa lagay. Aklat.

There was a rich man’s house
That was ransacked by robbers
They have taken the treasures
They have not changed or destroyed its appearance. Book.

4. Ako’y may kasama sa paghingi ng awa.
Ako’y di umiiyak, siya ang lumuluha. Kandila.

I have a companion in my praying
I do not cry but she sheds tears. Candle.

5. Hindi hayop, hindi tao
Kuhang-kuha ang kilos mo. Anino.

It is neither man nor animal
But it takes the resemblance of your acts. Shadow.


1. Ang magandang asal ay kaban ng yaman.
Good manners are a treasure.

2. Ang taong tamad, ginto man ang ulan, ay hindi makakapulot.
A lazy man will get nothing even if it rains with gold.

3. Ang ayaw mong gawin sa iyo, huwag mong gagawin sa kapwa mo.
Do not do unto others what you do not want others to do unto you.

[p. 10]

4. Ang salita ng taong sinungaling ay hindi pinaniniwalaan kahit na totoo.
The word of a liar cannot be relied upon although it is true.

5. Ang madaling hanapin ay madali ring mawala.
Easily earned, easily lost.


Sinasabi ng matatanda sa nayon na ganap na ikalabindalawa ng tanghali kapag ang araw ay tapat sa iyong ulo o sa iyong kinatatayuan. Gayundin, ang manok sa kanilang pagtilaok ay kanilang ginagawang palatandaan.

Most of the old folks here believe that it is exactly 12:00 high noon when the sun is directly overhead. The cock’s crow also signifies time according to them.


Ang “Bristol” kalendaryong ginagamit noong unang panahon ay kahawig na rin ng kasalakuyang kalendaryo natin. It ay ang mga araw o takdang sunod-sunod na kinatitikan ng ngalan ng Santo na kalimitan ay siyang pinagkukunan ng mga pangalan ng bagong silang na anak.

“Bristol,” a form of calendar, was commonly used during the past years. It has little difference from our present calendar. Opposite each date in “Bristol” can be found the day and names of the Saints. People of that time usually consulted this calendar for the name of the newly-born child.

PART III – Other Information

A. Information on books and documents treating of the Philippines and the names of their owners.
1. Political and Cultural History of the Philippines, by Gregorio F. Zaide, Part I; Owner – Mr. Jose Lopez.

2. I Saw Bataan Fall, by Carlos P. Romulo, Owner – Mr. Pedro Atienza.

3. The Saga of Dr. Jose P. Rizal, by Castillo and Castillo. Owner – Mr. Victor Evangelio.

B. Names of Filipino authors born or residing in the community, the titles and subjects of their works, whether printed or in manuscript form, and the names of the persons possessing them. None.

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