Alumni Journal

HISTORICAL, LEGENDARY AND GEOPOLITICAL SKETCH OF THE PROVINCE OF NUEVA VIZCAYA

 On the map of the Philippine Archipelago, the province of NUEVA VIZCAYA (Spanish name, meaning “New West”), is located in Region II in Northern Luzon.  It is a land-locked low valley, originally the 3rd among 3 provinces that comprised the vast Cagayan Valley, the first is Cagayan and the second is Isabela.  It had an original area of 6,961.1 sq. kms., and a population of 501,517.

After the province of Quirino was segregated in 1966, Nueva Vizcaya has now an area of 3,903.4 sq. kms., and a population of 358,823 (1995 census). It is  bounded on the North by the provinces of Ifugao and Isabela, on the East by Quirino, on the South by Aurora and Nueva Ecija and on the West by Benguet and Pangasinan.

Nueva Vizcaya was established on March 10, 1917 with 15 municipalities and 276 barangays. Its municipalities or towns from the north to the south are : Diadi, Bagabag, Tuao, Solano, Bayombong, Bambang, Indiana, Dupax Proper, Dupax Del Norte, Dupax Del Sur, Castaneda, Aritao, Sta. Fe and 2 newly created towns.

On the map, Nueva Vizcaya looks like a paddle, the large part lies on the north and the handle extending south to the border of Aurora.  The majority of the inhabitants are Ilocano settlers who came from the Ilocos regions, such as Ilocos Norte, Ilocos Sur, Abra, La Union and also from Tarlac.  The Tagalogs mostly migrated from Nueva Ecija and some also came from Pampanga, Bulacan, and Pangasinan.

The native inhabitants of Nueva Vizcaya are the nomadic aboriginal tribes of Ilongots that roam the mountains, hills and forests of the remote towns of Kasibu and Kongkong in the northeastern part of Nueva Vizcaya, also the tribes of Ifugaos along the border of Ifugao and Nueva Vizcaya on the north, the Gaddangs occupy the Calecquep Hills (now Vista Alegre) and the district of San Nicolas in Bayombong, the tribes of Isinays and Malaats inhabit the northern part of Bambang, while the Igorots live in the forests and hills of the Caraballo mountains on the west and southwest from Sta. Fe along the border between Nueva Vizcaya and Pangasinan.

In the political scene, when the Philippines became an independent Republic in 1946, Nueva Vizcaya was declared as a lone congressional district and represent in Congress successively by politicians. Such as Congressmen Guillermo E. Bongolan, Leon Cabarruguis, Leonardo Perez, Carlos M. Padilla, who were reelected several times and currently Ma. Luisa “Banti” Cuaresma.

Nueva Vizcaya was also successively governed by Governors Demetrio Quirino, Leon Cabarruguis, Don Domingo Maddela, Don Tomas Maddela, Atty. Manolo Maddela, Atty. Jose A. Madarang, Jose Espino, Corazon M. Espino, Patricio Dumlao (reelected many times), Atty. Rodolfo Q. Agbayani, Ruth Rana Padilla and presently Carlos M. Padilla.

The capital of Nueva Vizcaya is Bayombong, the fifth town on the north.  While the town of Solano, 6 kms. North of Bayombong, is considered the hub of trade and commerce and in Bambang, the big public market, the southern Nueva Vizcaya General Hospital and some colleges and other institutions of learning are found, Bayombong is recognized as the center of academic education, where the prestigious  St. Mary’s University, a Catholic institution of learning is located and the Nueva Vizcaya State University is situated, where agriculture, farming and animal husbandry are taught to thousand of students who want to become agriculturists, farmers, horticulturists and veterinarians.  The Veterans Memorial Regional Hospital is situated on the hillside of Bangan Hill, a few  hundred meters from the south before entering the Bessang Pass, gateway to downtown Bayombong.

The wide, circular CLISOC (1st initials of NV officials Cabarruguis, Light, Inaldo, Silvestre, Olidan, Carray) Field is located between the NV. Gen. Comprehensive High School and the Nueva Vizcaya State Universtiy, where physical education, pre-military training, festival extravaganzas and cultural activities are conducted and performed. Grandstands and bleachers surround the circumference of the CLISOC Field like an amphitheater, where enthusiastic people view the various activities performed on the field.

All the inhabitants of Nueva Vizcaya – the natives as well as the permanent immigrant settlers and those who were born therein – are collectively called VIZCAINOS.  Today, Nueva Vizcaya is the home of the Novo Vizcaino, a man tempered with rich cultural tradition, devoted to the protection of the environment and advancement of social conditions. Through the spirit of people participation handed down as a tiny spark from  his forefathers and grew as a ball of fire towards the present day generation, giving warmth and inspiration to achieve global competitiveness and improved quality of life in an atmosphere of peace and prosperity.

Researched and written by:  Pedro A. Fabroa
(N.B. writer attended SMS from Gr. V to  Gr. VII and 1st yr. in SMHS from 1935 to 1938 then transferred to public high school at NVGen.ComprehensiveHS in 1939-40 2nd &3rd yr. then dropped out due to illness then WWII broke out in 1941)