About Masbate Province, Philippines

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Masbate Province
is an island province of the Philippines located in the Bicol Region. Its capital is Masbate City and consists of three major islands: Masbate, Ticao and Burias.

Capital: Masbate City
Land Area: 4,151.78 km²
Population: 834,650 (2010)
Cities: Masbate
Munacipalities: 20
Barangays: 550
Districts: 1st to 3rd districts of Masbate
Languages: Bikol, Masbateño, Tagalog, English, Cebuano

The land_______________________________

Physically, Masbate lies exactly in the center of the Philippine archipelago north of the Visayas region. The main island looks like an arrowhead with its tip pointing north. Its southern portion encloses the Asid Gulf, while the Jintotolo Channel separates it from Panay Island. The Masbate Pass separates the two islands of Burias and Ticao from the main island of Masbate.

Ethnically, as well as geographically, the province is part of the Sibuyan Sea group of islands which includes Romblon, Marinduque, Sibuyan and many other small islands. There is an admixture of Visayan and Bicolano cultures in the area, and their language, Masbateño, is a Bisakol blend of Capiznon, Hiligaynon, Bikol, Waray-Waray, Cebuano, Romblomanon and Tagalog. Most of Masbate Island speaks Masbateño, but the peninsula which points towards Cebu speaks Cebuano and the peninsula which points towards Panay speaks Hiligaynon. All of Ticao Island and half of Burias Island speak Masbateño, but northern Burias speaks Central Bikol.

A Brief History___________________________

Pre-Spanish Period

During the pre-Spanish period, the province was part of the province of Sorsogon. The province is administrated by the Diocese of Sorsogon during the Spanish times.

Masbate as an Independent Province

The Second Philippine Commission (the Taft Commission) organized the islands of Masbate, Ticao and Burias into the Province of Masbate during their visit to the region in March 1901. Senor Serrano, a native Masbateno, was appointed Governor of the province. Señor Serrano, a local was appointed Governor; George Landers, a New York soldier, was appointed Supervisor; Lieutenant Snyder of the Twenty-seventh Infantry Regiment was appointed Treasurer. The province had about 40,000 inhabitants at that time.

In 1901, a very strong typhoon hit Masbate badly and seriously crippled its economy when coconut plantations, forests and 90% of the houses were severely devastated. Governor Henry C. Ide issued an Executive Order annexing Masbate to the Province of Sorsogon under the Philippine Commission Act 1413 enacted on November 23, 1905 which took effect on January 1, 1906.

During the year 1917, Masbate became independent of its mother province, Sorsogon. Pio V. Corpuz became its first governor after the American times. The municipality of Pio V. Corpuz is named in his honor

The People______________________________

The people of Masbate were formerly called "Visaya" but when the province was transferred to Bicol region during the regime of President Ferdinand Marcos, they were called "Bicolanos" or "Masbatenos". Many of its people are immigrants from several provinces such as Romblon and Panay Island provinces. The people of Masbate are known as best in agriculture, history, politics and geography means.

Getting There and Away_____________________

The province of Masbate is designated as a first class province.

Map of Masbate Province
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