Brief History of Claveria

The scenic “Claveria”, endowed with rich verdant plains, mountains, rivers, blue seas and biodiverse.

The splendors of the beautiful and fast growing town of Claveria can be traced from its first settlers and some of their roots, who most of them were from the towns of Pasuquin and Vintar in the Province of Ilocos Norte. They blazed their trail north-eastward and crossed the Caraballo Mountain Ranges (popularly known to travelers as Calvario because of the dangers posed by its winding, precipitous and muddy roads) in the quest for better life and greener pasture. The first settlers settled in a vast area of the forest situated beside a river full of fishes and lilies which they called bakungs. They first called the settlement as “Kabakungan” which means, where the bakungs are, until for obvious reasons, the place was renamed as Cabicungan.

There was a move to transfer their community near the seashore, considering that most of them were fishermen. However, the Spanish missionaries who then ruled them were against the move because of the stone church that was constructed as the centre of their faith. The move had never been realized until the coming of the marauding pirates called “Tirongs”, who crossed the South Seas. They plundered the place, burned some dwellings and had some other forms of violent attacks in the area. With the situation, Spanish officials decided to put up a Spanish military fort along Cabicungan River that would provide escorts of defense against attacks and/or springboard of conquest in the mountainous region of Apayao.

Moreover, the putting up of a fort was to help protect the travellers who journeyed both by land and by sea, particularly those from Ilocos to Cagayan, passing through the Lakay-Lakay toward the Cabicungan.

It was during the visit of Don Narciso Claveria, the Governor General of the Philippines when the residents petitioned the sympathetic governor that their village be turned into town or pueblo and be separated from the town Pamplona in order for travellers and/or settlers from Ilocos to Cagayan, who were Ilocanos to have government of their own and a community to develop. Considering the difference in culture, Pamplona, being the land of Ibanag, and seeing the area to the mother municipaity, and the strong desire to develop the area at a faster pace, the “Gobierno Superior Civil” with the affirmative decision and endorsement of the leaders and residents during public consultation, approved for the creation of the then Sitio Cabicungan into a town or “pueblo” and for it to be separated from its mother municipality, Pamplona in the province of Cagayan on April 9, 1864.

And through a Presidential Proclamation issued in March 9, 1865, Cabicungan finally became a town and renamed as “Claveria” in honor of the Governor General of the Philippines Don Narciso Claveria who conquered and stopped violent attacks of the marauding pirates in the area during the Spanish Regime in 1848, through his leadership.

Don Narciso Claveria, the Governor General of the Philippines made trip to the whole Cagayan Valley in 1846 in order to find out and solve problems besetting the area. Through his leadership, he was able to conquer and stop violent attacks and raid south seas wherein he was conferred the “Grand Cross of San Fernando” by the Queen of Spain. His successful campaign sounded the death knell of the marauding pirates in 1848. One day, when his ship docked beside Kabikungan River, in time also with the thanksgiving and celebration in the village, or sitio which named Cabicungan, a former cabecera of the town of Pamplona.

The Municipality of Claveria is bounded on the east Pata River and Sanchez Mira; on the south by the Municipality of Calanasan, Province of Apayao (formerly part of Kalinga Apayao); and on the west by the Municipality of Sta. Praxedes. It has a total land area of 19,480 hectares with 41 barangays (8 urban & 33 rural). It belongs to third class municipality with 29,992 population (PSA, 2015).

Claveria has come a long way in terms of its development since its establishment in 1865. It has grown above expectations because of the visionary stewardship and the remarkable dedication, diligence, perseverance and passion of its leaders. The collective efforts of local and national leaders of the government and private sectors in attaining socio-economic growth have moved Claveria towards greater heights. It has continuously received progressed socially, economically, culturally, morally and spiritual that resulted to an improved quality of life of the community as well as in becoming one of the famous municipalities in the region.

Municipality of Claveria, Cagayan

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