Palompon, Leyte

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Palompon church (i).JPG
Map of Leyte with Palompon highlighted
Map of Leyte with Palompon highlighted
Palompon is located in Philippines
Location within the Philippines
Coordinates: 11°03′N 124°23′E / 11.050°N 124.383°E / 11.050; 124.383Coordinates: 11°03′N 124°23′E / 11.050°N 124.383°E / 11.050; 124.383
Country Philippines
Region Eastern Visayas (Region VIII)
Province Leyte
Congr. district 4th district of Leyte
Established 1620
Barangays 50
 • Mayor Ramon c. Oñate
 • Total 126.07 km2 (48.68 sq mi)
Population (2010)[2]
 • Total 54,163
 • Density 430/km2 (1,100/sq mi)
Time zone PST (UTC+8)
ZIP code 6538
Dialing code 53

Palompon is a second class municipality in the province of Leyte, Philippines. According to the 2010 census, it has a population of 54,163 people.[2]


Palompon is politically subdivided into 50 barangays.[1]

  • Baguinbin
  • Belen
  • Buenavista
  • Caduhaan
  • Cambakbak
  • Cambinoy
  • Cangcosme
  • Cangmuya
  • Canipaan
  • Cantandoy
  • Cantuhaon
  • Catigahan
  • Cruz
  • Duljugan
  • Guiwan 1 (Pob.)
  • Guiwan 2 (Pob.)
  • Himarco
  • Hinagbuan
  • Lat-osan
  • Liberty
  • Mazawalo Pob. (Lili-on)
  • Lomonon
  • Mabini
  • Magsaysay
  • Masaba
  • Parrilla
  • Plaridel
  • Poblacion Central 1
  • Poblacion Central 2
  • Poblacion Central 3 (Hinablayan)
  • Rizal
  • Sabang
  • San Guillermo
  • San Isidro
  • San Joaquin
  • San Juan
  • San Miguel
  • San Pablo
  • San Pedro
  • San Roque
  • Santiago
  • Taberna
  • Tabunok
  • Tambis
  • Tinabilan
  • Tinago
  • Tinubdan
  • Pinagdait Pob. (Ypil I)
  • Pinaghi-usa Pob. (Ypil II)
  • Bitaog Pob. (Ypil III)


Along the strip of fertile coast, the community was founded circa 1620 and originally named Hinablayan. Fish, sea shells and other marine products abounded. People fished along the shore with arrows tied to vines. Its abundance attracted not only migrants but also Moro raiders from the south. Legend tells that local defenders used to hang the dead bodies of Moros on tree branches, so that the place come to be known as Hinablayan (from the word sablay which means "to hang").[3]

The legend continues that when the Spaniards came they saw floating at the bay a cluster (pong pong) of mangrove propagules locally known as "Tungki", they decided to change the name of Hinablayan to Paungpung, after the cluster of mangrove propagules to erase the bloody memory of the Moro raiders. Gradually the name evolved to Palompong, then to Palumpun, and its current spelling of Palompon sometime in 1700 or 1800. It is said that cluster later got stuck to the shoal until they grew up as trees, forming an islet which is Tabuk Island today.[3]

In 1737, Jesuit missionaries arrived and built the first chapel which was later burned during a Moro raid. It was rebuilt and, as a refuge from attack, the chapel was enclosed with piled stones, with a "cota" along the frontage. When the people saw Moro vintas coming, the big church bell would ring the alarm and people rushed inside the church, fighting back with bows and arrows and spears.[3]

The place assumed the role of cabeceria of all the municipalities in the northwestern side of Leyte during the Spanish regime. At that time Palompon was under the parish of Hilongos. The parish priest visited the place occasionally for marriage, baptism and masses.

Old cannon of Palompon

The Jesuits, later succeeded by the Augustinians, built the present church with 300 natives, who were forced labor without pay. If one or some of the laborers were unable to work, they were substituted by others just to maintain the quota every day for the next thirty years. The structure soon became a landmark of Palompon, reputed to be the oldest church in Leyte. On November 12, 1784, Palompon obtained its parochial independence from Hilongos.[3]

Sometime in late 17th century, there was a nine-day battle between the Palomponganons and Moro raiders during which the residents rushed to the stone church (newly completed at that time) and took refuge for more than a week. The Moros suffered losses in that encounter and were defeated. A cannon in the town's plaza is a relic of that battle.[4]

Ormoc remained part of Palompon parish from 1784 until 1851, when finally it was declared as an independent parish. Villaba and Matag-ob were both part of the territorial jurisdiction of this town as well before they obtained their municipio (pueblo) status.

In 1957 the barrios of Santo Rosario, Santa Rosa, Balagtas, San Vicente and Mabini were separated from the municipality of Palompon and constituted into Matag-ob.[5]


Population census of Palompon
Year Pop. ±% p.a.
1990 45,745 —    
1995 50,319 +1.80%
2000 50,754 +0.18%
2007 52,530 +0.48%
2010 54,163 +1.12%
Source:pa National Statistics Office[2]


  1. ^ a b "Province: Leyte". PSGC Interactive. Makati City, Philippines: National Statistical Coordination Board. Retrieved 13 June 2013. 
  2. ^ a b c "Total Population by Province, City, Municipality and Barangay: as of May 1, 2010" (PDF). 2010 Census of Population and Housing. National Statistics Office. Retrieved 13 June 2013. 
  3. ^ a b c d Arcadio A. Molon, Jr. (2013). "History". Palompon Municipality. Retrieved 17 June 2013. 
  4. ^ Manuel Artigas de Cuerva “Resena de la Historia de la Provincia de Leyte
  5. ^ "An Act Creating the Municipality of Matag-ob in the Province of Leyte". Retrieved 2011-04-12. 

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