How Old is Your City?
The Philippines is abundant in beautiful places that surpass the usual. It is rich in history that transcends time; it is undeniably timeless. The cities we belong to are but a proof of the past that shaped who we are as Filipinos. Thus, it makes us truly proud to say that we live in a country worthy of adoration.
Here are some of the oldest cities in the Philippines:
Age: 76 years old
President Quezon purchased 1,529 hectares from Diliman Estate of the Tuason Family, in 1938. In October 1939, he signed the Commonwealth Act, also known as Charter of Quezon City, birthing the city. By virtue of Republic Act No. 333 signed in July 1948, QC officially became the capital of the Philippines and the permanent seat of the national government. However, the capital status returned to Manila by virtue of President Decree No. 940 in June 1976.
Age: 152 years old
Pasay became a town upon the recommendation of the Archbishop of Manila, Gregorio Meliton Martinez Santa Cruz in December 1863. The conversion of the town into a city was requested by Ignacio Santos Diaz, the former congressman from the first district of Pasay. It was approved and signed into law by President Roxas in 1947.
Age: 174 years old
Mandaluyong was first known as a barrio of Sta. Ana de Sapa, a part if the district of Paco, Province of Tondo. In honor of the patron saint of Rome, it was named as San Felipe Neri. In 1841, it was separated from Sta. Ana de Sapa.
In 1904, for several months, San Felipe Neri became the capital of Rizal Province. It became an independent municipality in 1907. In November 1975, by virtue of Presidential Decree No. 824 signed by President Marcos, Mandaluyong was formally included in newly-established Metropolitan Manila. He later made the conversion of Mandaluyong from being a municipality into a city.
Age: 253 years old
The proclamation of Las Pinas as a town of Manila province was believed to be either in 1762 or 1797. Agustin de la Cavada, a Spanish historian, and Fr. Juan de Medina placed it at 1762. It became a municipality of Rizal province in 1901.
When the city became a part of the National Capital Region, it still remained as a part of Rizal until 1976. Las Pinas officially achieved its cityhood in 1997.
Age: 345 years old
Makati City is one of Asia’s prominent financial, commercial, and economic centers. It is known for its developed business district. Before it became the outstanding city that it is today, it was just a humble municipality that gained its independence in 1670. It was christened San Pedro de Macati in honor of Saint Peter, the town’s patron.
In 1914, the Philippine Legislature Act No. 2390 was passed shortening reducing the name San Pedro de Macati to just Makati.
Age: 414 years old
In 1601, some 80 years after the discovery of the islands by Ferdinand Magellan, the original lands constituting Muntinlupa could be assumed to have been friar lands governed by the Augustinians, then sold and assigned to the Sanctuary of Guadalupe.
Age: 428 years old
Taguig which used to be a booming fishing community along the shores of Laguna de Bay was recognized and established as a separate town in the then province of Manila in 1587. It was once part of the encomienda of Tondo headed by Alcalde Mayor Captain Vergara. Now, it is an important residential and industrial suburb of Metro Manila.
A bill was passed in Congress pushing for the cityhood of Taguig in 1998 but was only granted on December 8, 2004.
Age: 442 years old
Pasig City has progressively become more commercialized and urbanized over the years since its foundation in July 1573. Through Act No. 137 of the Philippine Commission, the province of Rizal was created on June 11, 1901. Pasig was incorporated into Rizal, designating it as the new capital of the province.
Pasig was removed from Rizal province to become a part of Metro Manila in 1975 when President Marcos through Presidential Decree 824 created the Metro Manila Commission which is now known as Metropolitan Manila Development Authority.
In 1994, through Republic Act 7829, Pasig was converted into a highly urbanized city. President Fidel Ramos signed it on December 1994 and was approved through a plebiscite in January 1995.
Age: 443 years old
Parañaque City was founded in 1572 by Spanish missionaries. However, during the American occupation of the Philippines, it became one of the first municipalities in the Metro Manila region. It was then converted into a chartered city on February 15, 1998.
Paranaque was derived from the phrase “para na aque”, which literally means “stop now, boy”. It was commonly used in the past when people wished to get off from kalesa (horse-drawn carriages).
Age: 444 years old
The City of Manila has long been recognized as an extension city of the Royalty of Spain that claimed Manila back in 1571 when Spanish conquistador Miguel Lopez de Legazpi arrived from New Spain and exercised rule over the land.
Age: 444 years old
Cavite was given the royal land grant in May 1571 by the Spanish conquistador Miguel Lopez de Legazpi. It was then named as Cavite la Punta. It was christened Cavite el Puerto also known as Cavite Nuevo when the Spaniards discovered that it was an appropriate location for the repair and construction of their ships and galleons.
Age: 494 years old
Cebu City is the oldest city in the Philippines. It is where the Portuguese explorer Ferdinand Magellan first landed in 1521. Many people consider it as the oldest city although it was not technically a city yet until its charter and incorporation in 1937.
In July 1565, the Treaty of Cebu was formalized. Lopez de Legazpi’s party named the new city “Villa de San Miguel de Cebu” which was later renamed “Villa del Santisimo Nomber de Jesus”.
It is delightful to live in a property located in a city that is rich in history. History books would tell you what took place during the past, but it is best to personally get a glimpse of them. Relive history when you take up residence in any of these cities.
Do you know any interesting stories about the city where you live in? Share it with us in the comments section.