Tuyom and Valladolid

Tuyom and Valladolid

A caveat here. The historical evolution of the concepts of barangay and barrio studied and presented here goes only as far as Carcar is concerned. Other towns, and other provinces, may have had other, and more faithful to the orthodoxy, experiences.  But I would not be surprised if, under closer scrutiny, those places also shared the same general history with regards to the barangay and the barrio as Carcar. Why should Carcar have had it differently?

But Valladolid first. [The origin of the name of the historic Spanish city of Valladolid is not certain.  Speculations range from the origin being Arabic BalladulWallid (City of Wallid) after a great Caliph of Damascus, a Latin combinative of vallis (valley) and tolitum (confluence of waters) to the simple Spanish, valla (fence) de Olid (of Olid).]

Manwhile, 180-year-old records in Carcar refer to a place Daanglungsod.  Some records ca. 1820-30 even also used the Spanish equivalent, Pueblo Antiguo. When I was a boy in Carcar, old folks still called the place Daanglungsod, even if it was really officially barrio Valladolid.  We all know daanglungsod means “old town”, so that area must have been where the old town was located. Of course, Daanglungsod was a reference, not really a name and thus could never have been the name of that old town. You do not establish a town and call it Daanglungsod. So was that town already called Carcar?

While there was still no mention of Buenavista, no Guadalupe, Ocaña, no Perrelos, no Valencia, no other Spanish-named place at the time, Daanglungsod even back then was already referred to also as Valladolid, and that is one of the clues that the old town may indeed have been named Valladolid, that Valladolid was the previous name of the town in Carcar’s history.

Researching just that, Carcar history, for the Cebu Provincial Towns History Project, Jerry Martin Alfafara determined that the Spanish religious authorities had established a town out of the old visita Sialo, and the town was named Valladolid (maybe we can look on this development as Sialo to mean the settlement but Valladolid was the whole town, which meant it was comprised, necessarily, of many such settlements, not just Sialo). The patron saint was Our Lady of the Visitation.

Carcar historical accounts then relate that after the church and center were razed in a pirate raid around 1622, the center was moved further inland and this new town in 1624 was called Carcar. A 1622 map says Kabcar. And with a new patron saint, St. Catherine of Alexandria. That being so, Valladolid was de facto downgraded to just a place name in Carcar, and was simply referred to, or called, by the Visayan Daanglungsod (old town).

If Valladolid be the old name, the renaming of the town to Carcar would be a “demotion” for the town, from the old capital of Spain to an agricultural town in Navarra even smaller in size and population than Carcar, Cebu, itself.  At that time, the Spanish priests would have been cognizant of this, but it is doubtful the native folks already shared the insight.

And so, for a long time, the place was just called Daanglungsod, although in 1849 records, the term Barrio came to be used for a locality. However, with regards to administration, individuals residing or working in barrio de Daanglungsod appeared to have been still registered under various cabezas de barangay, and this may be taken to mean that even by this time, the barangay had nothing to do with the barrio-hood: a barrio was a place, but the barangay was not.

Thus, with the barangay system still in operation, we can surmise that this barrio at this time still had no official functions as far as administration of people went, and the barangay (and their cabezas) was how taxes were still collected and orders handed down. Later on, when the territorial and administrative unit of Barrio was finally instituted, Barrio Valladolid was formed by the merger of surrounding localities, Catadman, Tuyom, Taug and including Daanglungsod, although the name or term Daanglungsod continued to be synonymous with the new Barrio Valladolid.

Well and good, but perhaps with the barrio’s expanded boundary, people also began to forget where the actual older settlement of Daanglungsod was — where, especially, the old town center of Valladolid — Sialo — once was.  Thus, today, what the boundaries of the old Valladolid were, we may now have little means of determining, because perhaps a new center also emerged, as that would have been subject to political considerations. And, finally, with this new administrative barrio — let us say, with the incorporation of the barrio — the barangay went out of business, and the barrios’ ruling officials were now called the tenientes del barrio.

Of the places (now called sitios) in present-day barangay Valadolid, only Taug figures in the 1850-51 parish books. There is, however, also a sitio Tubod although there is another sitio of the same name in Valencia, only I have not determined yet whether the Tubod in the books is the one in Valladolid or Valencia.

A burial ground was once discovered inside Taug but most traces have since then been carted away: potteries, spears. Did somebody even benefit from the human bones?

Tuyom – [(nat.) sea urchin.]  It’s hardly debatable for what the place Tuyom was named after.  But let’s first take a look on this from the barrio-barangay perspective.  Of the many sitios that make up present barangay Tuyom, only the name Tuyom itself was mentioned as a locality name in the 1846-51 records of the parish books.

That is a bit surprising, considering the fact that one of the barangay’s sitios, Bantayan, is so called after the old watchtower there.  What could be older than a watchtower? So how old a place name is this Bantayan?  Many oldtimers mention a Tadman as the old previous name of Bantayan. Maybe that’s it: that the watchtower certainly would be called a bantayan (bantay = to watch) but the whole place was Catadman. Well, Catadman is also found in the old records along with Tuyom. But today the entire sitio is now just Bantayan, even if a few hundred meters inland from the cliff, one could hardly make bantay and stay faithful to the calling of one’s place.

But however faithful, too, I try to stay with the goal of this page — to make modern sense of our old place names — no volunteered answer has been very satisfactory, as to what Catadman meant. It is often interchanged with Catarman but what, too, is that?  For a while, the best reply said it refers to a deep indentation, a sort of deep shelf underwater. Until today, when foremost archaeologist historian in Cebu Jojo Bersales said Cebu locals call a cape Catarman.

Since “-an” may very well be the suffix indicating a general place as well as where to do or get something (ex. honasan, bolinaoan), it would be very interesting for students of ancient bisaya what the etymology of catarm- or catadm- is. Catadman may be a syncope of cataladman, talad being Cebuano for table, and thus, a mesa or bluff overlooking, in this case, the sea. Well, a cape.

Meanwhile, ruins of the original church of the old town of Valladolid were once visible in the area near later place Inayagan, now also a sitio of barangay Tuyom.  It is not unreasonable to presume that the town center of old Valladolid must have been the vicinity of that original church.  People have since carted away the cobbles and stones, for which personal projects we dare not even consider. I aim to visit the area and confirm for myself what people now report: that you can no longer make out any ruins there. And to think that this must have been the even more ancient settlement Sialo, or Salog or Jaro. (Sialo, wâ hinumdum unsa jud ngan?) What heritage could be more precious to Carcar and where are our heritage advocates then?

(Inayagan itself has an added historical significance in once being the old-time center of the pottery-making industry, owing to the enviable clay found in it, which clay is compared only with that in Liloan and in Sibonga, the other pottery centers of the province.)

In the 1846-51 church books, Tuyom, Catadman, Daanglungsod or Valladolid, and Taug are mentioned as place names.  Being referred to separately meant that at that time, each of these places were distinct from each other and already occupied a more or less pre-agreed although possibly loose boundaries.

When the barrio Valladolid was established, annexed to it, along with the place Daanglungsod were those places above, and possibly some other sitios to form the territory of the barrio.

Anyway, a political development in the 1970’s saw important leaders Marcel Navarra (the much-respected writer), Nicolas Lapas and Buenaventura Laorden pushing for the creation of a separate barrio Tuyom. The declaration of Martial law overtook these plans, but under the ML administration, Governor Eduardo Gullas, in a strategic political move to increase the number of local government units, armed with the requisite barangay ordinance by barangay Valladolid (barangay was the new name for barrio, courtesy of President Marcos), as well as the plebiscite of the residents exercised for the purpose, through the Provincial Board then created a separate Barangay Tuyom. Thus, Barangay Tuyom was established.

But what also happened in conjunction with this barangay move was that part of the territory of Valladolid had to be ceded to this new barangay and, as it happened, the oldest historic places in the town, all once belonging to barangay Valladolid — and presumably the daang lungsod itself — got transferred to Tuyom.  The old church ruins, located within what’s now sitio Inayagan, is now part of Tuyom.

And the watchtower, located in what was old place Catadman, now called sitio Bantayan — that, too, went to Tuyom.  Thus, the ancient church and the watchtower are now in barangay Tuyom.

Either the residents and leaders of Barangay Valladolid had other priorities, were not too concerned for history, or were caught napping or just looking the other way, or the proponents and political backers of an independent Tuyom were just more influential. But there it is, Valladolid lost out its part of Carcar ancient history by giving up Tuyom. It can now only claim the linambay zarzuela as its older tradition.

Location, location. Agreed:  the old town center, where the old church ruins are (or were, since after only some years these can no longer be found), near Inayagan. But the present center of Tuyom must not have been the old one of the Tuyom settlement, either. You can’t call a place Tuyom where the echinoderm cannot be found and so that old center/settlement must have been nearer to and by the coastal area. Thus, the Daanglungsod center must have been present sitio Inayagan, and Tuyom nearer the sea.

But an important movement, the arrival of city folks to Daanglungod –Regis, Gantuangco, Avila, Osmeña — saw the development of agricultural areas quite some distance from the old Daanglungsod.  The affluence and influence of these families were such that their very presence simply must have caused a shift of the center of Valladolid from Inayagan to this new area where these families’ landholdings and houses were  located — especially the latter, where they became a mini-community onto themselves. Even a chapel, built in 1905 in this new area, later became the church when the parish of Valladolid was founded in 1975 with San Roque as the patron. This is the new Valladolid.

With this shift of Valladolid to this present area, the center of Tuyom may also have moved more inland to the old Daanglungsod itself.

As it is, the old Valladolid, the daang lungsod, is now no longer in barangay Valladolid, but in barangay Tuyom.

— — — — — — —

=thanks to flora gantuangco-bacus, sesinio villaluz jr., bonifacio alesna, rosveias alesna, jojo bersales


  1. This article is really a nice one because it unfolded some important facts about these places.It might as well be a big help for the people to be concern about their history…..nice try…!!!!!!!!…This article helped me with my assignment….thank you!!!!!!!!!…..

  2. Ang ngalan nga Catadman matod pa sa akong lola nagagikan sa sa pulong nga Kataguman kay dasok ang maong dapit sa tanum nga Tagum kaniadto.

    • salamat kaayo aning bag-ong salmot bahin sa mga karaang pangalan sa atong lungsod. sa ang mga taga didto nga akong gipangutana, nga wala makahinumdum sa ngalan catadman, hinoon tawag nila sa lugar kay catarman. akong i-confirm kining tanum nga tagum.

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