The last time you might have heard of the Balangiga Bells was when President Rodrigo Duterte, in his 2017 State of Nation Address, requested that they be returned. Well, the American government finally listened and returned them in time for Simbang Gabi1, which started December 16. Hurray!

But tell me, dearest foreign Senior Citizens, are you aware of these bells and why the Americans got them? Well, no need to stress your senior minds, think no more! Tita S will tell you all the details, blow by blow, taken from various sources.

The Balangiga bells are three church bellstaken by the United States Army from the Church of San Lorenzo de Martir, the town church of Balangiga3, diocese of Borongan4, province of Eastern Samar5, in the Philippines, as war trophiesafter reprisals following the Balangiga massacre in 1901 during the Philippine-American War7.


It took the town folks of Balangiga four years to raise funds to acquire the first campana colgante(hanging bell), with a mouth diameter of 31 ¼ inches, a height of 30 inches, and the inscription: “R. San Francisco Ano El 1853 (R. San Francisco The Year 1853), either named after the parish priest at that time or as a reference to the Franciscan order. It was cast around 1863 and bears what was believed to be the Franciscan coat of arms.

1853 bellThe 1853 Balangiga Bell – photo by Rhk111 – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0,

The town acquired the second bell, cast around 1889, having a mouth diameter of 27 ¾ inches, a height of 27 ½ inches, through the initiative of Fr. Agustin Delgado, with the inscription: “Se RefundioSiendo Cura Parroco El M. R. P. F. Augustin Delgado Ano 1889.

1889 bellThe 1889 Balangiga bell – photo by Rhk111 – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0,

The third and smallest bell was acquired in 1895, through the initiative of Fr. Bernardo Aparecio, with a height of 23-24 inches and a mouth diameter of about 20 inches and bears the Franciscan emblem. It has this inscription: “Se RefundioSiendo Parroco P. Bernardo Aparicio Ano 1895”.

1895 bellThe 1895 Balangiga bell – photo by Rhk111 – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0,

This bell can be considered an esquila (small bell) or campana de vuelo (“flight bell”), a bell used to sound warning for locals to escape or evade in times of peril. This was the bell used to signal the start of the attack by the Filipinos against the American troops (see below).


The smallest Balangiga bell which ended in the possession of the 9th Infantry Regiment10 at Camp Red Cloud11 in South Korea, was said to have been rung to signal the surprise attack by the Filipinos, the townspeople who were allegedly augmented by guerillas12, against the American troops of the Charlie Company of the said infantry regiment, while they were eating breakfast on September 28, 1901, during the Philippine American War7, after the US took possession of the Philippines following the Spanish-American War13.

Valeriano Abanador, the town’s local chief of police, was believed to have been the mastermind behind the attack.14

Waray15 men, dressed as pious women carrying little coffins, purportedly of children who died of cholera, and armed with bolos, staged the attack which was a reaction to the oppressive treatment they got from the American colonizers.

Various historical accounts recounted that the US soldiers, in order to flush out the rebels, cut off the food supplies to the town, and they also assaulted young women. The attack was, therefore, an act to protect the dignity and freedom of the Filipinos, and their bravery against an oppressive power, an act of defiance, courage and heroism.16

The villagers killed 48 and wounded 22 of the 78 men of the unit, with only four escaping unhurt and four missing in action. They were able to capture about 100 rifles and 25,000 rounds of ammunition. An estimated 20 to 25 of the villagers died in the fighting, and a similar number were wounded. It was a massacre of Americans, from the American point of view, but represented a victory for the Filipinos during the Philippine American War, from the Philippine point of view!

It was the US Army’s worst defeat since the Battle of the Little Bighorn17 in 1876. The attack, and the subsequent retaliation, remains to be one of the longest-running and most controversial issues between the Philippines and the US, with conflicting records from both sides of the Pacific confusing the issue. According to historian Teodoro Agoncillo, the “true Balangiga Massacre” was the subsequent retaliation against the Samar population and guerillas when American soldiers, turned arsonists, burned whole towns during the March across Samar18.

An outraged American General Jacob H. Smith deployed 180 soldiers a day after the attack and ordered them to turn the town into a “howling wilderness” where every Filipino male, at least 11 years old and capable of carrying firearms, was killed while communities were burned down.19

The town was recaptured on September 29, 1901 by 55 men of Company G, 9th Infantry. That unit departed the town the same dayand was replaced by 132 men from Companies K and L of the 11th Infantry Regiment20 which garrisoned the town until relieved on October 18, 1901.

The Americans claimed 2,000 Filipinos died but a Filipino historian who was interviewed by ANC said that the figure could have reached 10,000. This US response was so brutal, and they even burned down the town, so should we not consider it a massacre as well, and call it the real Balangiga massacre, from our point of view?


US General Smith and his primary subordinate, Major Littleton Waller of the US Marine Corps, were both court-martialed for illegal vengeance against the civilian population of Samar. Waller was acquitted of the charges, but Smith was found guilty, admonished, and retired from service, but charges were dropped shortly thereafter. He was later hailed as a war hero.


The 11th Infantry regiment took the bells removed from the burnt-out Catholic town church, along with a cannon from the plaza in front of the church. All three bells remained under the charge of the 11th Infantry quartermaster, Captain Robert Alexander, at their Tacloban headquarters.

The 9th US Infantry Regiment10, however, maintained that the single bell in their possession was presented to the regiment by villagers when the unit left Balangiga on April 9, 1902. That bell was given to them by the 11th Infantry Regiment20 which took the three bells when they left Balangiga for Tacloban on October 18, 1901.

But tell me, if the bells were freely given by the villagers, why have the Filipinos been asking for their return for decades?

The smallest church bell was in the possession of the 9th Infantry Regiment10 at Camp Red Cloud11 in South Korea. It is said to be the bell which was rung to signal the attack against the American troops. The bell arrived in San Francisco on June 27, 1902. It was returned to its old Madison Barracks in Sackets Harbor, New York where a brick pedestal was built to display the bell. In 1928, it was moved to Fort Lewis in Tacoma, Washington. The bell was later kept at the 2nd Infantry Division Museum in Camp Red Cloud11, Uijeongbu, South Korea. It had previously been displayed at the unit’s Camp Hovey headquarters.

The 11th Infantry left the Philippines in 1904, taking their trophies with them and redeployed to Fort D. A. Russell (renamed Fort Francis E. Warren in 1927, then Francis E. Warren Air Force Base21 in 1949) in Wyoming, and arrived on March 23, 1904. On May 16, 1905, the Cheyenne Daily Leader newspaper reported that the cannon had been mounted on the parade ground near the flagpole, along with other relics from the Philippines, including the two three-feet tall church bells.

A sign was installed over one of the bells which said: “This bell hung in the church at Balangiga, Samar, PI, and rung the signal for the attack on Company C, 9th US Infantry, Sep 29 [28], 1901. Taken by Company K, 11th Infantry and detachment of Company K, 11th Infantry, the first units to reach the scene after the massacre.” This sign was erroneous, so the text was changed in 1911, giving proper credit to Company G 9th Infantry, for recapturing Balangiga. It eventually became artifacts in the collection of the National Museum of the United States Air Force.

In 1967, Colonel Robert J. Hill, then commander f the 90th Missile Wing, had a curved red brick wall constructed in the F. E. Warren Air Force Base21 trophy park for the bells, with a bronze plaque on the wall between the bells telling the story of the massacre at Balangiga: “Used by Philippinos [sic] to sound signal for massacre of Company C 9th Infantry at Balangiga PI 28th September 1901”.

In 1979, it was discovered that the bronze cannon taken from Balangiga, along with the bells, was in fact British in origin, cast in London in 1557, and bore the monogram of Mary I of England. As of 2001, a glass case housed the bells along with the 400-year old Falcon cannon.


 The recovery of the three Balangiga church bells had been sought by various individuals representing the Catholic Church in the Philippines, the Philippine government, the Veterans of Foreign Wars22, the American Legion23, and the residents of the municipality of Balangiga3 since the late 1950s.24

The earliest record of Filipino interest in the return of the Balangiga bells was on November 1957, when Fr. Horacio de la Costa of the Department of History at the Ateneo de Manila University wrote a letter to the 13th Air Force’s command historian Chip Wards at Clark Air Base, stating that the bells belonged to the Franciscans and that they should be returned to the Philippines.

The following year, a group of American Franciscans based in Guihulngan, Negros Oriental, again wrote Wards stating that the two bells were Franciscan.

In the mid-1990s, during the term of President Fidel Ramos, attempts were initiated by his administration to recover one or more of the bells from US President Bill Clinton. The US government was adamant that the bells were US government property, and that it would take an Act of Congress25 to return them and that the Catholic Church had no say in the matter. The Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines held the position that the bells were inappropriate as war trophies.

In 1998, President Ramos proposed casting two new bells, then having each country keep an original and a duplicate. Philippine Ambassador to the US Raul Rabe visited Cheyenne, Wyoming, twice, trying to win support for this proposal. He was not successful.

In 2002, The Philippine Senate approved Senate Resolution No. 393, authored by Aquilino Pimentel, Jr., urging the Arroyo administration to undertake formal negotiations with the US for the return of the bells.

In 2005, the Bishop of Borongan4, Samar26, Bishop Leonardo Medroso and Balangiga parish priest Saturnino Obzumar wrote an open letter addressed to President George W. Bush, the US Congress and the Helsinki Commission, requesting them to facilitate the return of the bells. That same year, the Wyoming Veterans’ Commission favored the return of the relics, however, Wyoming Governor Dave Freudenthal stated that he disagreed and opposed the return of the bells.

On January 13, 2005, US Congressman Bob Filner introduced H. Res. 313, urging the President to authorize the transfer of ownership of one of the bells to the Filipinos. The resolution died on January 3, 2007, with the sine die adjournment27 of the 109th US Congress.

On September 26, 2006, US Congressman Bob Filner, Congressman Dana Rohrabacher and Congressman Ed Case, co-sponsored House Concurrent Resolution No. 481, urging the president to authorize the return of the church bells. The resolution died on January 3, 2009, with the sine die adjournment27 of the 110th US Congress.

In 2003, Napoleon Abueva, the Philippines’ National Artist for sculpture, made a monument of the Balangiga3 encounter to serve as a reminder of how Filipinos stood up for independence.14 He then wrote the American Ambassador to the Philippines Kristie Kenney, in 2007, asking for her help in the bells’ recovery. On October 25 of the same year, during the 14th Congress of the Philippines, Senator Manny Villar filed Senate Resolution No. 177, “expressing the sense of the Senate for the return to the Philippines of the Balangiga bells”.  He also said: “… the bells were a part of the lives of the Filipinos because despite their poverty, the people and the church raised enough money to have the bells cast …”.16

The townspeople of Balangiga asked the US to return their church bells after receiving relief from the US military, subsequent to Typhoon Haiyan which hit the town in 2013.

In his second State of the Nation Address on July 24, 2017, President Rodrigo Duterte demanded the bells’ return, citing ownership of the Philippines. He said: “They are part of our national heritage. Isauli naman ninyo. Masakit iyon sa amin” (Please return them. It is painful for us.). Presidential Spokesperson Ernesto Abella emphasized that the return of the bells was “important for our national pride … it was a reminder of the gallantry and heroism of our forebearers.”24

In February 2018, two US lawmakers, Randy Hultgren and Jim McGovern, objected to the bells being returned to the Philippines due to the current human rights record established by Duterte’s Philippine Drug War.

Wyoming’s congressional delegation said the church bells should not go back to the Philippines as they serve as memorials to American war dead.28


During the 2017 ASEAN Summits, Philippine Secretary of National Defense Delfin Lorenzana met with his counterpart, US Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis. At this meeting, Lorenzana raised the issue of the bells. In a later meeting with Philippine President Duterte, Mattis made a personal commitment to secure the bells’ return. Mattis then sought legislation to enable the legal repatriation of the bells. Philippine Ambassador to the US Jose Manuel Romualdez, however, disclosed in an interview with CNN Philippines that President Duterte personally told Mattis to return the bells during the ASEAN Summit meeting in Clark, Pampanga, in October 2017.

US Ambassador to the Philippines Sung Kim said the US was committed to return the bells but there was still ongoing discussion.24 In August 2018, US Defense Secretary Jim Mattis notified the US Congress of their intention to return the bells. The US Congress then made a resolution for their return.28

However, prominent Eastern Visayas33 historian Dr. Rolando Borrinaga of the Philippines’ National Commission for Culture and the Arts said that US congressional approval was no longer needed as the return was also provided for in the US’s National Defense Authorization Act of 2018. “The final clincher is the recommendation of the Secretary of Defense to the President for the bells to be returned,” he said.28

On November 2018, Dr. Borrinaga stated that the two bells at the Francis E. Warren Air Force Base21 will be turned over to Philippine representatives on November 15, 2018. The third bell in South Korea was also ready for repatriation.

A military ceremony attended by Philippine Ambassador to the US Jose Manuel Romualdez and US Defense Secretary James Mattis was held on November 15, 2018 at the F.E. Warren Air Force Base in Cheyenne, Wyoming, prior to the two bells’ return to the Philippines.28

Secretary Mattis said: “In returning the bells of Balangiga3 to our ally and our friend, the Philippines, we pick up our generation’s responsibility to deepen the respect between our people.” Ambassador Romualdez added, “The significance of this event is the fact that we honor all of those and the kind of relationship that we have with the US … the return of the Balangiga bells signify closure of the Filipino-American War.”28

The two bells in Wyoming were then shipped to Philadelphia for restoration work before being sent to Japan, where they joined the third bell. All three bells were then on their way back to the Philippines.

On December 10, 2018, all three church bells were in Kadena Air Base in Japan, awaiting repatriation to the Philippines. The morning after, the US Embassy in the Philippines stated that the bells were on board a US Air Force Lockheed C-130 Hercules on the way to Manila. The plane arrived in Villamor Air Base in Pasay City, at 9:00 am.28

Touchdown, after 117 years – December 11, 2018! A simple welcome ceremony was held upon its arrival.19

The bells were put in display at the Philippine Air Force Aerospace Museum until December 14, 2018. They were then airlifted by a Philippine Air Force C130 plane to nearby town of Guiuan, arriving on December 14. These were then delivered to Balangiga3 in a two-hour journey via road.

Considered “sacramental or sacred objects that call the faithful to prayer and worship”, all three bells arrived in the Balangiga Church on December 15, 2018. President Duterte attended the turnover ceremony and said that the credit of the return “goes to the American people and the Filipino people”. A transfer certificate was then given to Mayor Randy Graza.

The Balangiga bells were finally home and were rung, for the first time in 117 years, for the first mass of Simbang Gabi 2018 on December 16, 2018! Great timing! It also symbolizes the closure of a painful episode lasting longer than a century between two countries. The bells will be rung for nine days this Christmas season, not for an attack, but for worship and prayer in observance of Simbang Gabi1.


September 28 was declared a special non-working holiday in the province of Eastern Samar to commemorate the Balangiga encounter, in accordance with Republic Act No. 6692, enacted on February 10, 1989. On this day, the town’s people also re-enact the encounter between the American soldiers and Filipinos so as not to forget history.14

The aforementioned information was obtained from the Wikipedia page “Balangiga bells”29 unless there is a footnote.

So, dearest Seniors, would you like to include a visit to these historical bells as part of your travel bucket list for 2019? I heard the town is asking the help of the Department of Tourism for their town to be declared a tourist attraction, to highlight the Balangiga bells, and to rekindle our love for our country. Let’s all support domestic tourism, ok? See you there some time …

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The following terms are defined for interested readers, especially non-Filipinos, those with “Senior-Moments”, and those too busy to Google such terms:

1Simbang Gabi (“Night Mass”) is a devotional nine-day series of masses practiced by Roman Catholics and Aglipayans in the Philippines, in anticipation of Christmas, and to the honor of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Masses are held daily from December 16-24 and occur at different times ranging from as early as 3:00 to 5:00 am. On the last day, which is Christmas Eve, the service is called Misa de Gallo (“Rooster’s Mass”). It is similar to the Misa de Aguinaldo practiced in Puerto Rico. The information was obtained from the Wikipedia page “Simbang gabi”.30

2A church bell, in the Christian tradition, is a bell rung in a church for a variety of reasons and can be heard outside the building. Examples are: to call worshippers to the church for a communal service, to announce the time of daily prayer, to signify special occasions like wedding or funeral service, and some believe to drive out demons. This cup-shaped metal resonator, hung within a steeple or belltower of a church or religious building, has a pivoted clapper hanging inside which strikes the sides when the bell is swung. All information is from the Wikipedia page “Church bell”.31

3Balangiga is a fourth class municipality32 in the southern coast of the island of Samar facing Leyte Gulf, in the province of Eastern Samar, in Eastern Visayas (Region VIII)33, in the Philippines. It sits at the mouth of the Balangiga River. The information is obtained from the Wikipedia page “Balangiga”.34

4Borongan is a component city35 and the capital of the province of Eastern Samar5, in the Eastern Visayas Region33, Philippines. It was founded on September 8, 1619 and became a city on June 21, 2007, according to the Wikipedia page “Borongan”.36

The Roman Catholic Diocese of Borongan is a diocese of the Catholic Church in Borongan4, Philippines, created on October 22, 1960 by Pope John XXIII, with Bishop Vicente Reyes as its first diocesan bishop, according to the Wikipedia page “Roman Catholic Diocese of Borongan”.37

5Eastern Samar is a province in Eastern Visayas (Region VIII)33, in the Philippines, which occupies the eastern portion of the island of Samar, according to the Wikipedia page “Eastern Samar”.38

6A war trophy is an object or souvenir taken from a battlefield after a victory, and displayed as a cultural object, and becomes the property of the state to which the soldiers responsible for the capture belonged. The information is obtained from the Wikipedia page “War trophy”.39

7The Philippine-American War was an armed conflict between the First Philippine Republic40 (FPR) and the US that lasted from February 4, 1899 to July 2, 1902. Filipino nationalists viewed the conflict as a continuation of the struggle for independence that began in 1896 with the Philippine Revolution41, while the US government regarded it as an insurrection. The conflict arose when the FPR objected to the terms of the Treaty of Paris42 under which the US took possession of the Philippines from Spain, ending the short Spanish-American War (April 21, 1898 – August 13, 1898). The information was obtained from the Wikipedia page “Philippine-American War”.43

8A campana colgante is the Spanish term for a hanging church bell, usually hung from a beam, and rung using a rope attached to the clapper, according to the Wikipedia page “Balangiga bells”.44

9Refundio is the Spanish word which means that the bell was recast from scrap bronze, according to the Wikipedia page “Balangiga bells”.44

10The 9th Infantry Regiment is a parent infantry regiment of the Army, active from 1855 till the present, which got involved in the Balangiga Massacre during the Philippine-American War7 on September 28, 1901. The information was obtained from the Wikipedia page “9th Infantry Regiment (United States)”.45

11Camp Red Cloud (CRC) is a US Army camp located in the city of Uijeongbu, between Seoul and the Korean Demilitarized Zone (DMZ)46, renamed after Corporal Mitchell Red Cloud, Jr., a Medal of Honor recipient, on Armed Forces Day, May 18, 1957, from its earlier name of Camp Jackson. The information was obtained from the Wikipedia page “Camp Red Cloud”.47

12A guerilla is a member of a small group of combatants, like armed civilians, who fights a larger and traditional military, using military tactics like ambushes, hit-and-run tactics, petty warfare, raids, sabotage, and mobility to fight a larger and less-mobile traditional military, according to the Wikipedia page “Guerrilla warfare”.48

13The Spanish-American War was fought between the US and Spain in 1898. Hostilities began in the aftermath of the internal explosion of USS Maine in Havana Harbor in Cuba, leading to US intervention in the Cuban War of Independence. US acquisition of Spain’s Pacific possessions led to its involvement in the Philippine Revolution41 and ultimately in the Philippine-American War7. The information was obtained from the Wikipedia page “Spanish-American War”.49

15The Waray people are a subgroup of the Visayan people who inhabit the whole island of Samar where they are called Samareños/Samarnons. Their primary language is the Waray language, also called Lineyte-Samarnon, an Austronesian language native to the islands of Samar, Leyte, and Biliran, which together comprise the Eastern Visayas Region33 of the Philippines. The information was obtained from theWikipedia page “Waray people”.50

17The Battle of the Little Bighorn, Battle of the Greasy Grass, or Custer’s Last Stand, was an armed engagement between the combined forces of the Lakota, Northern Cheyenne, and Arapaho tribes and the 7th Cavalry Regiment of the US Army on June 25-26,1876, along the Little Bighorn River in the Crow Indian Reservation in southeastern Montana Territory. The battle, which resulted in the defeat of US forces, was the most significant action of the Great Sioux War of 1876. The information was obtained from the Wikipedia page “Battle of the Little Bighorn”.51

18The March across Samar, or Waller’s March across the island of Samar, was an attempt made in 1901 by a US Marine unit commanded by Major Littleton W. T. Waller to traverse the Philippine island of Samar26 from Lanang (now Llorente, Eastern Samar) to Basey, Samar, a distance of about 35 miles (56 km). Waller proposed the expedition in October 1901 to US Brigadier General Jacob H. Smith, commander of the military district as a prelude to the establishment of outposts stretching across the island and thereby stop the flow of supplies to rebels in the north and to isolate rebels in the south. The expedition proved disastrous due to the unexpected harsh conditions as well as a mutiny of many of the Filipino porters. Ten Marines died during the attempt and eleven Filipinos were subsequently executed for their role in the mutiny. The information was obtained from theWikipedia page “March across Samar”.52

20The 11th Infantry Regiment is a regiment in the US Army which came into existence in January 1799 which was sent to the Philippines during the Philippine-American War7 from 1901-1903, to help put down the Moro Rebellion53, where it was in engagements against the Moros of Mindanao and the Visayans. It was disbanded on June 15, 1800. The information was obtained from the Wikipedia page “11th Infantry Regiment”.54

21The F. E. Warren Air Force Base is one of the three strategic missile bases in the USA, named in honor of Francis E. Warren55 in 1930, home of the 90th Missile Wing, assigned to the Twentieth Air Force, Air Force Global Strike Command, and also the home of Twentieth Air Force, which commands all US Air Force Intercontinental Ballistic Missiles (ICBM). The information was obtained from the Wikipedia page “F. E. Warren Air Force Base”.56

22The US Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) is an American war veterans organization headquartered in Kansas City, Missouri, established by James C. Putnam on September 29, 1899. It includes veterans who were soldiers, sailors, marines, airmen, and coast guardsmen who served the US in wars, campaigns, and expeditions on foreign soil or in hostile waters. The information was obtained from the Wikipedia page “Veterans of Foreign Wars”.57

23The American Legion is a US war veteran organization headquartered in Indianapolis, Indiana, made of state, US territory, and overseas departments, and these are in turn made up of local posts. Veterans who served at least one day of active duty during wartime, or are serving now, are potentially eligible for membership. Members must be honorably discharged or are still serving honorably. The information was obtained from the Wikipedia page “American Legion”.58

25An Act of Congress is a statute enacted by the US Congress. It can either be a Public Law, relating to the general public, or a Private Law, relating to specific institutions or individuals. The information was obtained from the Wikipedia page “Act of Congress”.59

26Samar is the third largest island in the Philippines, located in Eastern Visayas33, within central Philippines. It is divided into 3 provinces: Samar26 (the western two-fifths of the island), Northern Samar, and Eastern Samar. These three provinces, along with the provinces of the nearby islands of Leyte and Biliran are part of the Eastern Visayas region. This information was obtained from the Wikipedia page “Samar”.60

27Adjournment sine die (from the Latin “without day”) means “without assigning a day for a further meeting or hearing”. To adjourn an assembly sine die is to adjourn it for an indefinite period. The information was obtained from the Wikipedia page “Adjournment sine die”.61

29“Balangiga bells,” accessed November 2, 2018,

30“Simbang Gabi,” accessed November 2, 2018,

31“Church bells,” accessed November 2, 2018,

32A municipality is a small, single urban administrative division, or local government unit (LGU), in the Philippines which has corporate status and powers of self-government or jurisdiction as granted by law. It is a unit under a province62, subdivided into barangays63, a town, and is locally called “bayan”. In the Philippines, a municipality is headed by a mayor, a vice mayor and members of the Sangguniang Bayan (legislative branch). It can enact local policies and laws, enforce them, and govern its jurisdictions. It can enter into contracts and other transactions through its elected and appointed officials, and can tax as well. It enforces all local and national laws.

There are almost 1,500 municipalities in the Philippines and there are 6 income classes of municipalities in the Philippines: first class municipality (with at least 55 million pesos annual income); second class municipality (between 45-less than 55 million pesos annual income); third class municipality (between 35-less than 45 million pesos annual income); fourth class municipality (between 25-less than 35 million pesos annual income); fifth class municipality (between 15-less than 25 million pesos annual income); and, sixth class municipality (at most 15 million pesos annual income). The information was obtained from the Wikipedia page “Municipalities of the Philippines”.64

33Eastern Visayas, or Region VIII, is an administrative region in the Philippines which consists of 3 main islands: Samar26, Leyte and Biliran. It lies on the east central section of the Philippines and faces the Philippine Sea to the east. The region has 6 provinces (Biliran, Eastern Samar, Leyte, Northern Samar, Samar and Southern Leyte), one independent component city65 (Ormoc), and one highly urbanized city66 (Tacloban). The information was obtained from the Wikipedia page “Eastern Visayas”.67

34“Balangiga,” accessed November 2, 2018,

35A component city in the Philippines, according to the Local Government Code of 1991 (Republic Act 7160), is a city that does not meet the requirements of a highly urbanized city or an independent component city, and deemed part of the province in which it is geographically located. The information was obtained from the Wikipedia page “Cities of the Philippines”.68

36“Borongan,” accessed November 2, 2018,

37“Roman Catholic Diocese of Borongan,” accessed November 2, 2018, _Catholic_Diocese_of_Borongan.

38“Eastern Samar,”accessed November 2, 2018,

39“War trophy,”accessed November 2, 2018,

40The First Philippine Republic, or Malolos Republic, was a nascent revolutionary government in the Philippines, formally established with the proclamation of the Malolos Constitution on January 21, 1899, in the city of Malolos, province of Bulacan. It ended during the capture of President Emilio Aguinaldo by the American forces on March 23, 1901, in Palanan, Isabela. The information was obtained from the Wikipedia page “First Philippine Republic”.69

41The Philippine Revolution was a revolution that began in August 23, 1896 when the Spanish authorities discovered the Katipunan, an anti-colonial secret organization, and ended on August 13, 1898, after Emilio Aguinaldo issued the Philippine Declaration of Independence on June 12. This information was taken from the Wikipedia page “Philippine Revolution”.70

42The Treaty of Paris was an agreement, signed on December 10, 1898, that involved Spain relinquishing nearly all the remaining Spanish Empire, especially Cuba, and ceding Guam, Puerto Rico, and the Philippines to the US, thus ending the Spanish-American War13. It came into effect on April 11, 1899, when the documents of ratification were exchanged. The cessation of the Philippines involved a payment of US$20 million from the US to Spain. The information was obtained from the Wikipedia page “Treaty of Paris (1898)”.71

43“Philippine-Amercian War,” accessed November 2, 2018,

44“Balangiga bells,” accessed November 2, 2018,

45“9th Infantry Regiment (United States),” accessed November 2, 2018,

46The Korean Demilitarized Zone is a strip of land running across the Korean Peninsula, about 250 km (160 miles) long and 4 km (2.5 miles) wide, established by the provisions of the Korean Armistice Agreement to serve as a buffer zone between North Korea and South Korea, created by agreement between North Korea, China and the United Nations in 1953. The information was obtained from Wikipedia page “Korean Demilitarized Zone”.72

47“Camp Red Cloud,” accessed November 2, 2018,

48“Guerilla warfare,” accessed November 2, 2018,

49“Spanish-American War,” accessed November 2, 2018,

50“Waray people,” accessed November 2, 2018,

51“Battle of the Little Bighorn,” accessed November 2, 2018,

52“March across Samar,” accessed November 2, 2018,

53The Moro Rebellion (1899-1913) was an armed conflict between the Moro people (the Muslim population in Southern Philippines) and the US military during the Philippine-American War, according to the Wikipedia page “Moro Rebellion”.73

54“11th Infantry Regiment,” accessed November 2, 2018,

55Francis E. Warren (June 20, 1844 – November 24, 1929) was an American politician of the Republic Party, best known for his years in the US Senate representing Wyoming and being the first Governor of Wyoming. He was the last veteran of the American Civil War (April 12, 1861 – May 9, 1865) to serve in the US Senate. The information was obtained from the Wikipedia page “Francis E. Warren”.74

56“F. E. Warren Air Force Base,” accessed November 2, 2018,

57“Veterans of Foreign Wars,” accessed November 2, 2018,

58“American Legion,” accessed November 2, 2018,

59“Act of Congress,” accessed November 2, 2018,

60“Samar,” accessed November 2, 2018,

61Adjournment sine die,” accessed November 2, 2018,

62A province in the Philippines is divided into cities and municipalities32 (or towns), which in turn, are divided into barangays63, formerly called barrios.

63A barangay is the smallest administrative division in the Philippines and is the native Filipino term for village or ward. It was formerly called a barrio. It is informally subdivided into smaller areas called purok (“zone”), barangay zones consisting of a cluster of houses, and sitios, which are (usually rural) territorial enclaves far from the barangay center. The information was obtained from the Wikipedia page “Barangay”.75

64“Municipalities of the Philippines,” accessed November 2, 2018,

65An independent component city (ICC) is a city in the Philippines which is independent from the province in which it is geographically located. It has a charter that explicitly prohibits its residents to vote for provincial officials. In Eastern Visayas33, it is Ormoc. The information was obtained from the Wikipedia page “Cities of the Philippines”.76

66A highly urbanized city (HUC) is a city in the Philippines with a minimum population of 200,000 people and with at least 50 million pesos latest annual income. There are 33 such cities in the country, 16 of which are located inMetro Manila. In Eastern Visayas33, it is Tacloban. The information was obtained from the Wikipedia page “Cities of the Philippines”.76

67“Eastern Visayas,” accessed November 2, 2018,

68“Cities of the Philippines,” accessed November 2, 2018,

69“First Philippine Republic,” accessed November 2, 2018,

70“Philippine Revolution,” accessed November 2, 2018,

71“Treaty of Paris,” accessed November 2, 2018,

72“Korean Demilitarized Zone,” accessed November 2, 2018,

73“Moro Rebellion,” accessed November 2, 2018,

74“Francis E. Warren,” accessed November 2, 2018,

75“Barangay,” accessed November 2, 2018,

76“Cities of the Philippines,” accessed November 2, 2018,


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