Republic of the Philippines - Stamps & Postal History

RP Issues of 2016











2016, August 4.  Municipality of Lal-Lo, Cagayan, 435th Anniversary

Litho Offset, Amstar Company, Inc.,  Perf 14

Singles,  Sheets of  40




15p  St. Dominic Parish Church - Singles  (101,000) 




First Day Covers:  Manila & Lal-Lo, Cagayan






Municipality of Lal-Lo, Cagayan - 435th Anniversary


History of Lal-lo.  The Municipality of Lal-lo is one of the first four cities in the Philippines. Others are Cebu (1565); Manila 1571; and Naga (1575). Lal-lo (formerly named Nueva Segovia) for a time enjoyed the lavish gifts of the Papal Throne. It was named Nueva Segovia by Juan Pablo Carreon in 1581. It was visited by Juan Salcedo in 1572 and Luis Perez Dasmariñas in 1592. Because of its navigable river, it was chosen the capital of Cagayan Valley. It was also the seat of the Diocese created by Pope Clement VIII on August 15, 1595 till the seat was transferred to Vigan, Ilocos Sur in 1755. It was the capital of Cagayan up to 1839 when the Provincial Government was moved to Tuguegarao, Miguel Buenavides, O. P., a very famous personage among the missionaries at that time was elected bishop to the diocesan home in Nueva Segovia. He later found the University of Santo Tomas.

There is a widespread belief that Lal-lo town without peer when it comes to mestizos - that racial mixture of Malay, Spanish, Chinese and American - which is the genetic formula for haunting loveliness. It is common place that when you talk about mestizas, you will have a horde of eager listeners. But in Lal-lo, consensus says people will laugh at you. They are so familiar with them that they are taken for granted as household commodities like Kodak and Coca Cola. Like its beautiful women, Lal-lo has a beautiful history.

At first blush, Lal-lo could be easily mistaken for on American mining ghost town. But, tropical growth sparkling in the warm sunshine, seem to vie for the opportunity to tell stories about its happy dead day.

Its early inhabitants were the Ybanags. Most of their women are engaged in weaving clothes. One step in the preparation of the thread before weaving is winding, which was manipulated with the aid of a crude implement. According to Julian Malumbres, O.P. the Spanish historian, the natives subsequently called the town after a piece of thread “hilo”. In Ibanag, the thread is called “il-lo-c”, distorted to Lal-loc. Others, however, said that the name Lal-lo was derived from the big; strong, whirling current of the Cagayan River called in the dialect “mal-lal-lal-lo”, which is found up to this time near the point of a “bato” or stone along the bank of the river.

The early settlers of Lal-lo are the native Ibanags who built their communities along the banks of the Cagayan River. Their main livelihood was fishing and they caught fish in great quantities. The very productive culture of rice was introduced by the migrants who came from the Ilocos provinces. They arrived yearly by big wooden boats called “virays” or “pangco” to sell their native wares composed of clay pots, molasses, salt, onions, garlic and sinamay clothes for barter. Later, finding the rich soil of Lal-lo very productive and satisfying their natural love for agriculture and industry, intermarried with the native Ibanags and begun the opening of wide homesteads which created an exodus of Ilocanos to the municipality.

St. Dominic Parish Church.  In 1595, Pope Clement VIII created the Diocese of Nueva Segovia and in 1596, the Dominicans accepted it as an ecclesiastical mission. Nueva Segovia had three churches: the cathedral that was under the secular clergy, and the parishes of Bagumbayan and Tocolona under the supervision of the Dominicans. But because of its distance from Manila and the constant threat of the Cagayan River’s rampaging waters, the Diocese of Nueva Segovia was transferred to Vigan in Ilocos Sur province in 1758. The diocese’s name went along with the transfer to Vigan and to avoid confusion, Bishop Miguel Garcia requested that Nueva Segovia and its suburbs renamed back to Lal-lo. The seat of the Diocese of Nueva Segovia remains in Vigan till today where is now elevated as the Archdiocese of Nueva Segovia.

The transfer affected the closure of the cathedral and the merging of the three churches into the single parish of Bagumbayan. The two other churches were abandoned and eventually destroyed because of neglect while the church of Bagumbayan, dedicated to Sto. Domingo de Guzman (Saint Dominic) became what is now the present church of Lal-lo.,_Cagayan





  • Towns & Municipalities

  • Religious / Churches



Articles by Dr. Ngo Tiong Tak

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Issues of 2016