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BARANGAY WANGAL

MISSION/VISION/GOALS

Vision

We envision Barangay Wangal to be progressive and self-reliant community, with sustainable environment, where educated, peaceful and God-loving citizens live a healthy atmosphere, enjoying life from ancestral lands and responsively participate in local governance.

Mission

The Barangay officials commits itself in providing quality life to its constituents by finding an immediate and just solution to the needs and concerns.

Goals

  1. Seek assistance from the government agencies as well as the private sector and non-government organizations for additional funds and other resources to support all the projects identified and enhance reliable linkages therein for regular and technical assistance;
  2. Protect, respects and ensure the cleanliness of the environment;
  3. Organize cooperatives and associations to produce good quality of products;
  4. Protect and preserve the barangay watershed and
  5. Ensure security and safety of the citizenry we are serving.

BARANGAY WANGAL

HISTORICAL BACKGROUND

Pre-Spanish Era

During this early period in history, only wild animals mostly inhabited Wangal. Wangal was originally called “Vangal” an Ibaloi term attributed to the river, which its main source is Ampasit, runs down and passing through Lower Wangal going to Gayasi. This river serves as the main water source of living for the early settlers and animals in the community.

The few Ibaloi settlements were found in the area of Gosaran (sub-sitio of Upper Wangal) and their mode of subsistence were focused on hunting and gathering.  By this time, agriculture was already in practice too, with rice and camote as the main crop.

The social and cultural life of the people of Wangal was then, centered on the cañao festivity which lasted for days and weeks. Each nearby settlement was given a specific number of heads of cattle or carabao for the feast. In one festivity, Wangal was allotted only two heads of cattle or carabao due to the small number of people. The festivity was open to all the community people to attend and celebrate.

Spanish Era

During this period, there were at least 80 inhabitants in the five barangays namely Wangal, Pico, Takian, Bineng, and Alno which comprises the municipality of La Trinidad. The survey dated in 1892 that was documented and submitted to the national revealed the record.

The Spaniards established its government by assigning native Igorots as “Capitanes de Barangay”. Mangvel Dosdos, a rich landowner was made Capitanes de Barangay in Wangal.

Through forced labor, the trail leading to Wangal was constructed. Due to this labor and other Spanish cruelties, many people sought safer places and started to inhabit forested areas such as Talinguroy.

Residents also became victims of cholera, referred to by the natives as White Man’s Disease. Since medical facilities were very poor, many people died. Stories tell of Salvadora, Miguel Dosdos’ wife who got puss from the dead and put it to the other sick people and children using thorns to vaccinate them to help cure cholera.

Iron tools were introduced. Coffee, specifically that variety which is known today as Benguet coffee, was planted in a few areas. A remnant of this variety for today is on the hands of the heirs of Feliciano Hidalgo.

American Period

Wangal was spared of the wrath of the war during the revolution between the Americans and the Filipinos right after the Spaniards left. Records tell of American Negroes who came with guns but offering the natives candies and canned goods. This made the entry of the Americans easier as compared to the cruelty of the Spaniards.

The Americans also introduced in many changes; they introduce new kinds of highland vegetables, to meet the needs of the Americans in the city of Baguio. The concept of private property as against communal property began.

Education was also introduced.  Feliciano Hidalgo became the only pupil from Wangal to have enrolled at the American School made out of cogon at what is now Poblacion in 1905. Many lands in Wangal were declared as school reservations for the La Trinidad School farm in the 1920’s. As such, many ancestral lands still remain under the jurisdiction of Benguet State University, which was established by the Americans in 1916.

Japanese Occupation

During the Japanese occupation, many families of Wangal, though secluded in the valley, sought safer and farther places for safety. Japanese atrocities resulted in many deaths. Men from Wangal joined the organization of “bolo men” which became the basic support of the guerilla movement.

After the war, destruction and misery filled the air, while victims awaited unceremonious burial. People started to return to seek out their surviving kin and begin the task of re-building their lives.

Contemporary Period

Memories of folks remember that during the 1950s, logging permits were unregulated and Wangal was one of those logging areas, as well as Beckel, Tawang, Cruz. Most roads that exist up to this day were opened for the purpose of transporting timber. This continued up to the end of the 1960s, until government tried to regulate timber licenses.

On March 28, 1960, the Supervising Surveyor by the name of Rodrigo H. Romea assigned by the Bureau of Lands, surveyed the disputed land in Benguet Province,  particularly La Trinidad, Loakan, Guisad, Ambuklao and Mt. Data. He submitted a report to the Department of Agriculture and Natural Resources which recommended the amendment of Proclamation 209 in favor of the ancestral land claimants. Through this proclamation, some Wangal residents were able to own the land, but for other land owners, 40 years have passed since then and nothing has happened to the case. Up to now, the Mountain National Agricultural School which is now known as Benguet State University still has the jurisdiction over the 1,700 hectares located in different barangays in La Trinidad, and Wangal is one of those.

While many changes occurred in the valley, Wangal continues to display its rustic character. Its greenery and forests have regrown. To this day, agricultural farms are interspersed with agro-forest and forested areas.   But Upper Wangal has become increasingly populated by new residents due to the congestion in the valley floor.

Barangay Wangal

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