Resumen Histórico

200px-Boxer_codexAlthough there is no archeological evidence for such, a tradition claims that Silang was founded by a Bornean couple, Gat Hiniguiw and Gat Kaliwanag. This bond bore seven children: Gat Pandan, Gat Pogpog, Gat Pelayo, Gat Mamagtay, Gat Amatong, Gat Katumala, and Gat Amakit.

Familial quarrel led to the migration of other siblings and left Gat Pandan in Silang. The pre-colonial cultivation and development of the area into a community fit for human habitation was attributed to Gat Pandan.

Such possibility of an early Malay settlement may be supported by facts inferred in the study in the nearby Taal Lake by Thomas Hargrove. These sea-wandering tribe aboard a balangay (large boat) may have reached the area of Silang via a channel (now lost) opening to South China Sea.

The origin of the name Silang has two versions. One version is lexical, the Tagalog word silangan or east denotes Silang’s easterly location in the province. Another version is a myth associated to the birth of a church. According to a legend, “one morning the natives woke up to find a church newly risen (sumilang)…”

Murillo Map

Located in upland Cavite, Silang has a land area of 15,641 hectares or about 12.15% of the province’s total land area making it one the largest towns of Cavite. The town is approximately 45 kilometers from the Philippines’ capital, Manila, and 20 kilometers southeast of the provincial capital, Trece Martires City.

Considefelipe IIred as one of the oldest towns of Cavite, previous researches claimed four foundation dates for Silang. One is 1571 , which was based on the municipal records followed by 1575  claim by the Silang public school teachers study in 1953; the 1585  possibility from the research conducted by a priest of the Diocese of Imus and finally, 1595 . All these dates embrace a period of more than two decades. However lacking in certainty and veracity of these foundation dates, it only shows that the municipality’s existence has been instituted for the past four centuries.

Silang used to be part of an encomienda  or the land rights granted by the kingdom to its Spanish conquistadores and their successors to collect tributes from the locals entailed with responsibilities of protection and spiritual indoctrination. It was then part of the encomienda of Diego Jorge de Villalobos. When a Catholic parish was founded in 1585, the Franciscan order took the spiritual care of this paroquia until 1598 when Philip II gave a royal order of systematic division of the archipelago into separate mission territories benefiting the Holy See under Clement VIII.

clement VIIIHowever, based on the BPS study in 1953 the whole area comprising old Silang was purchased for 2,000 Mexican pesos from the King of Spain on March 9, 1746 to “save it from becoming a friar land” and was executed through the representation of Bernabe Javier Manahan and Gervacio dela Cruz. (more details on Sumilang post). This extensive old Silang territory was comprised of the towns known today as Carmona, Amadeo, Indang and General Trias.

In 1599/1611, the mission was passed to the Jesuits constructing a church in 1645 and had about 2,000 families paying tributes to the colonial government.