Caloocan City History, Philippines
The residents of Caloocan must have been proud of its city. Other than a thriving past, the city had somehow dramatic toss with times then. Now, it continues to set ground-breaking achievements for its people and visitors.
Caloocan had its famous episode in 1896 when Filipino troops fought against Spanish tyrants and advocates. The world was stirred by it. The city’s name derivation has a story behind. It’s said to have come from the Tagalog term “lo-ok”, which means “bay”, as Caloocan is just close to the Manila Bay. Others followed another version that “lo-ok” referred to “corner” because the town was concretely located “at the corner” in early days.
Historical accounts tell us that Chinese and Indians were the first settlers of Caloocan. Their features are mostly dull-colored with slim beard, flat nose and black eyes. Most dwellers in the past worked as fishermen especially those residing in Dagat-Dagatan, Navotas and Manila Bay areas. Those huge rural areas like Maysilo Estate were possessed by the Jesuits while Piedad was owned by Don Pedro de Galarraga. Cruz and Naligas Estates were possessed by the friars. The first terrain of Caloocan stretched up to the foothills of Marikina, Tala Rivers, San Francisco del Monte, Sampalok, Sta. Cruz, Tondo and Tanza.
The first Catholic Church in Caloocan was erected in 1765 by the Spanish Augustinian scholars who made it to “lo-ok” in 1762, but in 1814, religious governance was assumed by the Recollects. Caloocan started to grow in 1802 that led to its becoming a municipality in 1815. The door for economic progress opened when the railroad project connecting Manila and Dagupan was fulfilled in 1892. It made business transactions quicker and brought Caloocan closer to the bustling Metro Manila. In 1896, however, the people of Caloocan with the leadership of Andres Bonifacio rebelled against the Spaniards. It resulted in numerous revolutions one after another in all provinces of the Philippines.
Eventually, Spain ceded the nation in 1898, but the Americans arrived. It was another test for Caloocan to get through. Periods of reconstruction were experienced. New roads, public schools and railways were erected. Later, Caloocan had to endure three years of Japanese invasion. When Philippine Independence was proclaimed in 1946, Caloocan gained its authentic freedom after all.
It’s also important to note that the galleon trade history in Caloocan contributed to its growth. The export and import of products resulted to the coming in of Mexican money. It mutually improved the economies of Manila and Acapulco. Export products generated by Caloocan businessmen were in great demand for this trade. This growth continued as years went by, and now, Caloocan is harvesting the fruits of its labor.
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