History of Dalupaon
Dalupaon is the second largest barangay in the town of Pasacao. It’s a coastal area that lies amid a chain of low-lying mountains and sea of Southern Tagalog provinces. It is easily located among the rest of the barangays in hinterlands.
Inhabitants have different cultural backgrounds, as they have come from the various parts of the Bicol peninsula.
For many decades, their means of transportation has been by riding a motorboat to and from the port of Pasacao. In 2018, the first land transportation with jeepney was observed.
Dalupaon derived from two Bicolano words “ladop” and “paon,” meaning “to dive” and “fish bait,” respectively. The barrio’s source of living is fishing where natives either “ladop” or catch fish using “paon.”
In the early days during the pre-Spanish era, a group of strangers riding Vintas from the Moro land came to the place. They were popularly called “Moros” and wandered from place to place. They were known in the Bicol Peninsula as “Vagabonds of the South.” Their main goal was to search for wealth. The group was led by a “Lakan” or chief. He continuously ordered his troop to dive into the sea and look for undetermined wealth or hidden treasure.
While Moros were diving to look for wealth, the natives were diving to look for food such as crabs and other seafood. They called it “dalup,” a word native to inhabitants of the place, meaning “to dive.” It’s a local variant of “ladop,” the most popular and standard Bicolano word in the Bicol Peninsula. They were also catching fish using baits, which the natives called “paon,” the same word used in other parts of the Bicol Peninsula, meaning “fish bait.”
Moros left then a group of Spaniards arrived. They stepped on the ground and had dialogues with the natives accompanied with gestures. They asked the natives what was the name of the place and the sea while pointing to the sea. Natives misunderstood it, thinking they were asking how to catch fish in the sea. Instead, they told the Spaniards that they would perform “dalup” or use “paon” to catch fish. Spaniards on their end assumed that the place was known as Dalup and Paon or “Dalup y Paon” in Spanish.
Old Spanish books show that the place was also called “Dalupes” by Spaniards.
Hundreds of years later when the Philippines was colonized by the United States, American soldiers learned about a place called Dalupes or Dalup y Paon by Spaniards, but over the years of their stay, they Americanized the name of the place by shortening it to “Dalupaon.”
Spaniards discovered the beauty and wealth of the place, especially its forests in the nearby mountains. The place was rich in Narra and Mahogany trees and bamboos. They reaped these trees and bamboos, and installed a big sawmill in the coast. They built a shipyard, and the coast was later called “Astillero of Dalupaon” by Americans. Spaniards constructed two galleons. It was during the governorship of Juan de Silva (1609-1926), and named them “Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe” and “Ángel de la Guarda.” The two galleons were used in trading between Manila and Acapulco and in defense of the Philippines against Dutch incursion in the naval battle of Playa Honda.
A proof that a Spanish shipyard existed in Dalupaon is seen near the shore within the territory of Dalupaon Elementary School, and these are the remnants of a huge sawmill, which was called “Camarin” by Spaniards. This assertion is backed by historical accounts kept in several repositories in Spain.
Dalupaon played a vital role in the history of the Philippines, Spain, and the United States as well as the Japanese occupation and Dutch incursion. Who would have known that the two of the greatest warships of Spain would have been built along the coast of Dalupaon?