Wednesday, May 28, 2008

HISTORY OF DASMARIÑAS

Like the town of Amadeo, the municipality of Dasmariñas has an ambivalent history. Originally it was part of Imus until the year 1868, when it was converted into an independent municipality and named Perez-Dasmariñas. Then after nearly 37 years of independent existence Dasmariñas was reverted of Imus, remaining a barrio of the latter until it regained its independence after 12 years in 1917.

Historically, Dasmariñas had played an important role as gateway to the Magdalo revolutionary capital of Imus. It was in the strategic Pasong Santol, in barrio Salitran Dasmariñas, where General Emilio Aguinaldo and later his elder brother General Crispulo Agunaldo fought off Spanish General Jose Lachamber’s troops in seesaw battle from March 7 to 24, 1897, when the Spaniards captured it "over the dead body" of the elder Aguinaldo. With the capture of this Dasmariñas salient, the fall of Imus to the Spaniards was a foregone conclusion.

The first settlers to arrive in this former barrio of Imus in 1862 included the families of Gil Tirona, Vicente Guevarra, Eleuterio Ceda and Eustaquio Palume. The influx of settlers must have been so heavy that in few years they petitioned higher authorities for the conversion of the barrio into a separate municipality. When the new town called Perez-Dasmariñas was inaugurated in 1868 it had already its own Catholic parish established the year before by Augustinian Recollect fathers.

The history of Dasmariñas is inextricably linked with the life of one of its outstanding sons, Placido Campos. Kapitang Idong, as he was popularly called, was the son of Valeriano Campos (Kapitan Vale), of Talaba, Bacoor, and Julia Nave, a native of Bayang Luma, Imus. He was the fifth in a family of nine children. Campos was the capitan municipal of Perez-Dasmariñas when the Revolution broke out in August 1896. With the help of his secretary, Francisco Barzage, Campos and his volunteers attacked the Catholics convent and the Spanish garrison, but the Spaniards were able to escape.

The revolutionist pursued the fleeing Spaniards, overtaking them n barrio Sampaloc. In the ensuing skirmish a Spanish sergeant and a priest were killed while the rest were captured.

About seven months later, specifically on February 25, 1897, the Spaniards came back with a vengeance. The massive counter-offensive launched by Spanish General Lachambre rolled back Kapitan Idong and his army of voluntarios. With the exemption of the Church all buildings fought valiantly but no avail. About half of the town’s population of 20,000 perished in battle.

During the Philippined-American War (1899-1901) Kapitan Idong again took up arms on the side of General Aguinaldo and his Revolutionary Government. It was a losing fight from the very beginning. The Americans, superior in men and material, defeated the ill-equipped Filipinos after two years of fighting. Kapitan Idong and his nephew, Guillermo Campos, were captured and imprisoned at the Provost Political Prison on Posting Street, Intramuros, Manila, where they were kept for six months. Kapitan Idong returned to his family in Dasmariñas after his release.

In October 1901 the Americans established the civil government. In the first election held in Perez Dasmariñas Placido Barzaga, was appointed treasurer. The census of 1903, however, showed a tremendous decrease in the population of the towns of Cavite after the revolution of Perez Dasmariñas, for instance, went down from 12,000 to 3,500. Consequently, in 1901 a law was passed reducing the existing 22 municipalities of Cavite to nine. The law took effect in 1905.

In 1917, the situation having long returned to normal, during the administration of Governor-General Francis Burton Harrison, 1913-1921, Perez Dasmariñas was again made an independent municipality. The provincial governor of Cavite, Antero S. Soriano, convened the local leaders including Placido Campos, Francisco Barzaga, and Felipe Tirona, and agreed to delete the word ‘Perez" but retained "Dasmariñas" as the new name of the town. For the second time Placido Campos headed the re-christened town of Dasmariñas, this time in his capacity as the first municipal president under the American regime."

The complete name of barrio Burol is Pansol-Burol. Pansol is a Tagalog word meaning aqueduct, while Burol, also a native word, means mound. Burol is one of the oldest barrios of Dasmirañas as evidenced by the ruins of old sugar mills and stone buildings that may still be found in some parts of the barrio. Another barrio is Langkaan. Its name was derived from Langka, meaning jackfruit. Hence Langkaan means a place abounding in jackfruits. This barrio has many sitios.

The barrio Paliparan was a grassy land with no trees growing on its wide area, providing an excellent place for flying kites during summer. In fact, this was what the place used to be – a paliparan – meaning an airfield for flying kites. During the Spanish regime the Spaniards used to go to this place during weekends to fly kites of different designs and colors. On the other hand, the next barrio, Sabang, got its name from the diversion of the booklet separating it from barrio Malagasang, Imus. The flow of the stream was diverted to irrigate rice fields in the area, and this branching out of the booklet or intersection is called sabang in Tagalog. The barrio was established in 1916.

In the southeastern part of Dasmariñas is barrio Salawag, a Tagalog word meaning studs, to which nipa or cogon is attached for roofing. This place abounds in bamboo’s, which are split into studs for roofing. Another barrio of Dasmariñas called Salitran became famous in history because it was in a strategic pass in this place called Pasong Santol where Filipinos and Spaniards fought what may be considered the bloodiest battle during the Revolution. It was here where Filipino volunteers under General Crispulo Aguinaldo held Lachambre’s forces at bay until the defenders were wiped out almost t the last man. Crispulo Aguinaldo himself was the No. 1 casualty.



TOWN HEADS OF DASMARIÑAS

Except for lack of dates of the terms of the gobernadorcillos (also popularly referred to as captain) during the Spanish regime, the list of town heads of Dasmariñas is complete from its founding to the present. This speaks well of the sense of history of the municipal officials of Dasmariñas. The list follows in full:

GOBERNADORCILLOS FROM 1895: (1) Juan Ramirez (date of incumbency unknown); (2) Adriano Llano, (3) Eduardo Bautista, (4) Anastacio Paulme, (5) Valeriano Campos, (6) Eugenio Ambalada, (7) Ligario Malihan, (8) Leon Mangubat, (9) Lino Alcantara, (10) Fausto Bautista, and (11) Gregorio Bautista.

CAPITAN MUNICIPAL : Placido Campos, 1895-1896

MUNICIPAL PRESIDENT : Francisco Barzaga, 1900 (under the Military Government).

MUNICIPAL MAYORS : (1) Teodorico Sarosario, 1935-1940; (2) Felicisimo Carungcong, 1941-1945; (3) Maximo de la Torre, 1946 (appointed); (4) Gaudencio Geda, 1946, ditto; (5) Fermin de la Cruz, 1947, ditto; (6) Arturo Carungcong, 1948-1950; (7) Emiliano dela Cruz, 1951-1955; (8) Tomas Hembrador, 1956-1963; (9) Remigio Carungcong, 1964-1971; (10) Narciso M. Guevarra, 1972 to his death on December 17, 1982; (11) Recto M. Cantimbuhan, December 1982 (12) Elpidio Barsaga 1986 (13) Recto Cantimbuhan 1988 – 1995 (14) Elpidio Barzaga (1995 – present).

source: Saulo & de Ocampo: Cavite History

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