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Nueva Ecija

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Nueva Ecija
Province of Nueva Ecija
Minalungao National Park Bridge Shot.jpg
Dalton Pass Nueva Ecija.jpg
Pantabangan Dam.jpg
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NE rice paddy.jpg
Upper Tabuating Dam south view.jpg
Flag of Nueva Ecija
Official seal of Nueva Ecija
Nickname(s): 
Rice Bowl of the Philippines
Milk Capital of the Philippines
Heart of Inland Luzon
Anthem: Awit ng Nueva Ecija (Song of Nueva Ecija)
Location in the Philippines
Location in the Philippines
OpenStreetMap
Coordinates: 15°35′N 121°00′E / 15.58°N 121°E / 15.58; 121Coordinates: 15°35′N 121°00′E / 15.58°N 121°E / 15.58; 121
CountryPhilippines
RegionCentral Luzon
Founded25 April 1801[1]
Named forÉcija, Spain
CapitalPalayan
Largest cityCabanatuan
Government
 • TypeSangguniang Panlalawigan
 • GovernorAurelio Umali (Unang Sigaw)
 • Vice GovernorEmmanuel Antonio Umali (Unang Sigaw)
 • LegislatureNueva Ecija Provincial Board
Area
 • Total5,751.33 km2 (2,220.60 sq mi)
 • Rank12th out of 81
Highest elevation
(Mount Kiligantian)
1,673 m (5,489 ft)
Population
 (2020 census) [4]
 • Total2,310,134
 • Estimate 
(2020)
2,355,416[3]
 • Rank10th out of 81
 • Density400/km2 (1,000/sq mi)
  • Rank16th out of 81
Demonym
  • Novo Ecijano, Neoecijano
Divisions
 • Independent cities0
 • Component cities
 • Municipalities
 • Barangays849
 • DistrictsLegislative districts of Nueva Ecija
Demographics
 • Ethnic groups
 • Languages
Time zoneUTC+8 (PHT)
ZIP code
3100–3133
IDD:area code+63 (0)44
ISO 3166 codePH-NUE

Nueva Ecija, officially the Province of Nueva Ecija (Tagalog: Lalawigan ng Nueva Ecija [ˈnwɛba ˈɛsiha], also [ˈnwɛva- ]; Ilocano: Probinsia ti Nueva Ecija; Pangasinan: Luyag/Probinsia na Nueva Ecija; Kapampangan: Lalawigan/Probinsia ning Nueva Ecija), is a landlocked province in the Philippines located in the Central Luzon region. Its capital is the city of Palayan, while Cabanatuan, its former capital, is the largest local government unit (LGU). Nueva Ecija borders, from the south clockwise, Bulacan, Pampanga, Tarlac, Pangasinan, Nueva Vizcaya and Aurora. The province is nationally known as the Rice Granary of the Philippines, producing the largest rice yield in the country.

Discover more about Nueva Ecija related topics

Ilocano language

Ilocano language

Ilocano is an Austronesian language spoken in the Philippines, primarily by Ilocano people and as a lingua franca by the Igorot people. It is the third most-spoken native language in the country.

Pangasinan language

Pangasinan language

Pangasinan (Pangasinense) is an Austronesian language, and one of the eight major languages of the Philippines. It is the primary and predominant language of the entire province of Pangasinan and northern Tarlac, on the northern part of Luzon's central plains geographic region, most of whom belong to the Pangasinan ethnic group. Pangasinan is also spoken in southwestern La Union, as well as in the municipalities of Benguet, Nueva Vizcaya, Nueva Ecija, and Zambales that border Pangasinan. A few Aeta groups in Central Luzon's northern part also understand and even speak Pangasinan as well.

Kapampangan language

Kapampangan language

Kapampangan or Pampangan is an Austronesian language, and one of the eight major languages of the Philippines. It is the primary and predominant language of the entire province of Pampanga and southern Tarlac, on the southern part of Luzon's central plains geographic region, where the Kapampangan ethnic group resides. Kapampangan is also spoken in northeastern Bataan, as well as in the provinces of Bulacan, Nueva Ecija, and Zambales that border Pampanga. It is further spoken as a second language by a few Aeta groups in the southern part of Central Luzon. The language is known honorifically as Amánung Sísuan.

Central Luzon

Central Luzon

Central Luzon, designated as Region III, is an administrative region in the Philippines, primarily serving to organize the 7 provinces of the vast central plains of the island of Luzon, for administrative convenience. The region contains the largest plain in the country and produces most of the country's rice supply, earning itself the nickname "Rice Granary of the Philippines". Its provinces are: Aurora, Bataan, Bulacan, Nueva Ecija, Pampanga, Tarlac and Zambales. Pangasinan was formerly a province of Central Luzon before President Marcos signed Presidential Decree No. 1, 1972, incorporating it into Ilocos Region. Additionally, the province of Aurora was part of the defunct political region Southern Tagalog when the region was divided into Calabarzon and Mimaropa, upon the issuance of Executive Order No. 103, dated May 17, 2002, by then-President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, which transferred Aurora to Central Luzon.

Palayan

Palayan

Palayan, officially the City of Palayan, is a 5th class component city and capital of the province of Nueva Ecija, Philippines. According to the 2020 census, it has a population of 45,383 people,  making it the most sparsely populated city in the Philippines.

Cabanatuan

Cabanatuan

Cabanatuan, officially known as the City of Cabanatuan, is a 1st class component city in the province of Nueva Ecija, Philippines. According to the 2020 census, it has a population of 327,325 people,  making it the most populous city in Nueva Ecija and the fifth-most populous in Central Luzon.

Local government in the Philippines

Local government in the Philippines

The local government in the Philippines is divided into three levels: provinces and independent cities, component cities and municipalities, and barangays, all of which are collectively known as local government units (LGUs). In one area, above provinces and independent cities, is an autonomous region, the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao. Below barangays in some cities and municipalities are sitios and puroks. All of these, with the exception of sitios and puroks, elect their own executives and legislatures. Sitios and puroks are often but not necessarily led by an elected barangay councilor.

Bulacan

Bulacan

Bulacan, officially the Province of Bulacan, is a province in the Philippines located in the Central Luzon region. Its capital is the city of Malolos. Bulacan was established on August 15, 1578, and part of the Metro Luzon Urban Beltway Super Region.

Pampanga

Pampanga

Pampanga, officially the Province of Pampanga, is a province in the Central Luzon region of the Philippines. Lying on the northern shore of Manila Bay, Pampanga is bordered by Tarlac to the north, Nueva Ecija to the northeast, Bulacan to the east, the Manila Bay to the central-south, Bataan to the southwest and Zambales to the west. Its capital is the City of San Fernando. Angeles City is the largest LGU but while geographically within Pampanga, it is classified as a first-class, highly urbanized city and has been governed independently of the province since it received its charter in 1964.

Pangasinan

Pangasinan

Pangasinan, officially the Province of Pangasinan is a coastal province in the Philippines located in the Ilocos Region of Luzon. Its capital is Lingayen. Pangasinan is in the western area of Luzon along the Lingayen Gulf and the South China Sea. It has a total land area of 5,451.01 square kilometres (2,104.65 sq mi). According to the 2020 census it has a population of 3,163,190.  The official number of registered voters in Pangasinan is 1,651,814. The western portion of the province is part of the homeland of the Sambal people, while the central and eastern portions are the homeland of the Pangasinan people. Due to ethnic migration, the Ilocano people settled in the province.

Nueva Vizcaya

Nueva Vizcaya

Nueva Vizcaya, officially the Province of Nueva Vizcaya, is a landlocked province in the Philippines located in the Cagayan Valley region in Luzon. Its capital is Bayombong. It is bordered by Benguet to the west, Ifugao to the north, Isabela to the northeast, Quirino to the east, Aurora to the southeast, Nueva Ecija to the south, and Pangasinan to the southwest. Quirino province was created from Nueva Vizcaya in 1966.

Aurora (province)

Aurora (province)

Aurora is a province in the Philippines located in the eastern part of Central Luzon region, facing the Philippine Sea. Its capital is Baler and borders, clockwise from the south, the provinces of Quezon, Bulacan, Nueva Ecija, Nueva Vizcaya, Quirino, and Isabela.

History

Precolonial era

These first settlers included tribes of Ilongots (Egungot) or Italons, Abaca and Buquids.[6] Settlements were built along the banks following the river's undulations. The Ilongots, meaning people of the forest, were the fierce headhunters and animist tribes who occupied Carranglan and the mountainous terrain of Sierra Madre and Caraballo.[7] The head hunting communities were nestled along the riverbanks of Rio Grande's tributaries in the north. Abaca and Italon were subgroups of Ilongots meaning river settlers. Ilongots survived mainly by fishing and hunting. Food production was a secondary occupation. The agriculture-based community of Caraclans and Buquids[8] were settled in Bongabon and Pantabangan along the riverbanks of Rio Grande's tributaries in the northeast.[9]

When the waves of Tagalog migrations took place between 300 and 200 B.C., intrepid travelers and traders set up settlements along Luzon's western coast. These early settlements formed the nucleus of the Pampango Empire that was consolidated by Balagtas. The flatlands of the southern portion of Upper Pampanga was a hospitable place for these new Tagalog settlers. The indigenous tribes were forced to take to the hills in the face of the Tagalogs' superior technology.[10]

Barter trade flourished among communities that settled along the great river. The constant riverside trading resulted in both a commercial and cultural exchange between the settlements in vast plains upstream of the Rio Grande de Pampanga. Settlements in Carranglan, Pantabangan, and Bongabon and prospered and grew into more stable communities.

Spanish attacks

At the time, the Pampango crown has waned and had little resistance from Spanish invasion. When the Pampango Empire fell into the hands of Spanish forces under the command of Martin de Goiti in 1572, the conquistadores began their long upward trek towards Cagayan Valley and Mountain Province. Their forces passed through the settlement areas of the Upper Pampanga River. They also attacked the Caboloan of Pangasinan, effectively capturing more territories from local kingdoms.

Because of growing territorial domain and evangelical missions, a command outpost or Commandancia in the Upper Pampanga River area was established. Then Governor-General[11] Fausto Cruzat y Góngora (July 25, 1690 to December 8, 1701) had most likely spent much of his time in the northern outpost in Carranglan and Pantabangan and, baking in the fiercely hot climate, probably waxed nostalgic about his hometown in Ecija, Andalusia in Spain. Ecija, Andalusia was also known as la sarten or the frying pan because of its intensely hot summers. Thus the Governor-General hit upon the notion to name the outpost Nueva Ecija. Both the New and Old Ecija were washed by navigable rivers- the former, by Rio Grande de Pampanga and the latter, by the river Genil.

Conversion to Christianity

Consistent with the history of Hispanization in the rest of Philippine archipelago, Nueva Ecija was established by Augustinian missionaries. The first mission was established in Gapan in 1595. The Augustinians abandoned their missionary work in 1636, maintaining only the mission in Bongabon.[12]

At the turn of the 18th century, the missionaries resumed their evangelical work and redirected their efforts to the northeast, towards rough, mountainous terrain inhabited by Ilongots.

On September 1, 1759, King Carlos III of Spain issued a Royal Decree that ended the founding missions of Augustinians and transferred all Augustinian responsibilities in the settlements of Nueva Ecija to Franciscan friars. Through tribute collections and polo y servicio or rendering of force labor, the Franciscans constructed churches, convents, parochial schools and tribunals. They also constructed roads and bridges to connect other settlements. In 1781, a simple irrigation system was constructed in Pantabangan. This new farming technology contributed to the promotion of agriculture in the province.

New province

To make possible the establishments of settlements, military force became necessary to protect the friars and whatever basic settlement structures were beginning to emerge. Thus military outposts were of utmost importance, especially with the friars trying to convert fierce head-hunting tribes with spears and bladed weapons. It was around this time, during the term of Governor General Fausto Cruzat y Gongora (July 25, 1690 to December 8, 1702), that he established the military outpost he named Nueva Ecija. At this time, however, Nueva Ecija was still part of upper Pampanga.

In 2016, researchers of the National Historical Commission of the Philippines (NHCP) and the provincial government found documents showing that in 1799, Carlos IV ordered the separation of towns and parishes of Upper Pampanga, near the Sierra Madre range, as well as coastal towns of Tayabas, along the Pacific Ocean and their organization into a corregimiento (political-military administrative unit). Royal directives were implemented on April 25, 1801, and the corregimiento was named Nueva Ecija after the Spanish hometown of that period's Governor General Rafael Maria de Aguilar, with Baler as its capital.[13]

Since then, the province had undergone numerous changes in territorial composition. The progressive towns of Gapan, San Isidro, Cabiao and Aliaga were all annexed to Nueva Ecija, resulting in an economic as well as population boom for inhabitants. While Nueva Ecija only had a population of 9,165 in 1845,[14] the annexation of new territories three years later pegged the population at 69,135.

Other changes occurred in the following years until, in 1901, Nueva Ecija's northern municipalities of Balungao, Rosales, San Quintin and Umingan were annexed to Pangasinan. Nueva Ecija's shifting political boundaries in fact necessitated transferring its provincial capital four times. Still, these changes proved ultimately beneficial to Nueva Ecija, as they resulted in a territory with rich land resources nourished by an excellent river system composed of the Rio Grande de Pampanga, Talavera and Penaranda rivers. This would help lay the foundation for Nueva Ecija's abundant agricultural economy starting with the American Occupation in the early 20th century.

Cry of Nueva Ecija

The "Cry of Nueva Ecija" is the 1896 revolutionary battle led by General Mariano Llanera, manned and assisted by General Manuel Tinio and Pantaleon Valmonte of Gapan City, Nueva Ecija and Colonel Alipio Tecson of Cabiao, Nueva Ecija who later on became Brigadaire General. The battle was fought in Cabiao, Nueva Ecija. Alipio Tecson would eventually become Gobernadorcillo of Cabiao, Nueva Ecija.[15]

Tobacco monopoly

Maintaining the Philippines as a colony became a challenge for the Spanish Empire. Expenses incurred in running the colony were usually paid for by a yearly subsidy (called real situado) sent from the Philippines' sister colony in Mexico. This financial support from the Spanish royal court was often insufficient, especially with expenditures in the Philippine colony growing each year.

This prompted the royal fiscal assigned in Manila to devise a plan to allow the colony itself to raise revenues on its own and thus be able to supplement the Spanish subsidy. This royal fiscal was Francisco Leandro de Vianna, who first proposed creating a tobacco monopoly. De Vianna reasoned, tobacco was a product widely consumed throughout the islands, with a market of roughly one million. He projected earnings of as much as P400,000 from the venture. The first time the proposal was made, however, both King Carlos III of Spain and colonial officials didn't give the idea much importance.

All that would change during the term of Governor-General Jose Basco y Vargas. Basco had plans to develop and promote Philippine agriculture, and de Vianna's proposal seemed attractive to him. After studying the proposal, Basco sent his plan to establish a large-scale tobacco production in the colony under complete ownership and management by the colonial government of Spain. What probably perked up the ears of the Spanish king about Basco's plan to make the Philippine colony financially self-sufficient, thus removing a huge financial burden from the Spanish crown. The King of Spain issued a royal decree on February 9, 1780, setting in motion Basco's plan.[16]

Almost two years to the date of that royal decree, Basco ordered local officials and military commanders to prevent unnecessary losses of tobacco revenues. By March 2, 1782, tobacco production was established in Luzon, with La Union, Ilocos, Abra, Cagayan Valley and Nueva Ecija (still part of Pampanga at the time) as the centers for planting, growing, harvesting and processing tobacco.

This made a drastic and extreme change in the lives of all Novo Ecijanos. Where farmland used to bear rice, tobacco was now the only crop allowed to grow. These included the towns of Gapan, San Isidro, Jaen, Cabiao, Cabanatuan, Talavera, Santor and Bongabon. Each farming family was given a quota of tobacco plant to grow.

By 1850 the tobacco monopoly was producing immense financial gain for the colonial government. Some reports at the time pegged the earnings by as much as $500,000. One account in 1866 reported a much higher amount, as earnings rose to $38,418,939 that year.

Novo Ecijanos suffered a lot from the system. Nueva Ecija was more often able to meet production quotas compared to the other districts. Despite this, tobacco policy imposed a lower price on tobacco from areas closer to Manila. That meant that first-class tobacco leaf grown and harvested from Nueva Ecija was priced lower by one dollar, compared to those from Ilocos, La Union and Cagayan Valley.

The tobacco monopoly did not spur Novo Ecijanos to revolt, unlike the Ilocanos who staged an uprising over injustices in the system. Some tobacco growers in Nueva Ecija resorted to smuggling their own harvests in order to get some profit. But getting caught entailed harsher fines and penalties. Even sympathetic local officials had no choice but to enforce the unjust policies under pain of arrest and hard labor, once laxity on their part resulted in low production.

The flourishing tobacco industry coupled with the rich agricultural lands in central and northeastern Nueva Ecija also attracted migrants from neighboring Pampanga, Pangasinan, Ilocos and Tagalog areas. This made Nueva Ecija a melting pot of cultures and influences, the results of which are still evident in present-day Novo Ecijano culture.

As the tobacco monopoly fuelled further unrest, Spain finally abolished the monopoly on December 3, 1882. It was only then that they could all once again grow rice for food.[17]

Rebellion against Spain

First prisoners of the Philippine Revolution in 1896
First prisoners of the Philippine Revolution in 1896

One distinct feature of the 1896 revolution against Spain in Nueva Ecija was that it was led by the elite, ruling class instead of the masses. Leaders of the revolt in Nueva Ecija were municipal officials and prominent citizens, who refused to collaborate with the Spanish authorities when armed struggle broke out. Despite being in the ruling class and enjoying positions in the colonial government, these prominent Novo Ecijanos proved their patriotism and love for fellow Filipinos.[18] In fact, one of the founding members of the reform movement La Liga Filipina[19] was lawyer and Novo Ecijano Mamerto Natividad. By the time the Katipunan, the revolutionary movement against Spain, was formed, Novo Ecijanos were actively yet secretly joining it. Even local officials in Nueva Ecija secretly allied with the illustrados and farmers in forming the underground revolutionary society.[20]

Once the Spanish authorities learned of the Katipunan's existence, those perceived as sympathizers of the movement, and even those who were falsely accused of being members of it, were arrested. Mamerto Natividad was among those arrested for sedition, tortured and killed by guardia civil. He was one of the first Novo Ecijano martyrs[21] for freedom. His death, however, would result in bigger problems for the Spanish authorities.

Mamerto Natividad's two sons, Mamerto Jr. and Benito Natividad, later joined the Katipunan. The Spaniards burned their house and sugar mills in Jaen. Mamerto Jr. was later jailed for shooting a Spanish judge who had slapped his younger brother. As the Revolution gained ground, Mamerto Jr. was released and he was able to join the revolutionary army of General Emilio Aguinaldo in Cavite. By August 30, 1896, a state of war was declared by the Spanish colonial government in several Luzon provinces including Nueva Ecija, Bulacan, Pampanga, Tarlac, Batangas, Laguna, Cavite and Manila.[22]

Novo Ecijanos immediately proved themselves worthy of the fight for freedom. On September 2, 1896, Novo Ecijanos led by Gen. Mariano Llanera, capital municipal of Cabiao and Gen. Pantaleon Valmonte, capitan municipal of Gapan attacked San Isidro, the provincial capital. Their 3,000-strong army attacked San Isidro in distinct Novo Ecijano fashion: accompanied by music played by the Banda de Cabiao or Cabiao band.

Wounded American on stretcher in the Philippines, 1899
Wounded American on stretcher in the Philippines, 1899

Novo Ecijanos like Llanera, Valmonte, Mamerto Natividad, Jr. and Manuel Tinio conducted themselves heroically during the revolution. They were allied with Aguinaldo's Magdalo[23] group. Aguinaldo was in fact so impressed, he appointed Natividad and Llanera to the two highest-ranking posts in the revolutionary army. Natividad became General Mamerto Natividad, commanding general of the revolutionary army, while General Llanera was vice-commander with the rank of Lieutenant-General. General Natividad proved himself worthy of the position by scoring victories against the Spanish in Tayug, Pangasinan and San Rafael, Bulacan.

Pact of Biak-na-Bato Filipino negotiators
Pact of Biak-na-Bato Filipino negotiators

On November 11, 1897, Natividad was killed in action in Cabiao, Nueva Ecija. His death precipitated the Pact of Biak-na-Bato,[24] a peace treaty that sought to end hostilities between Spanish authorities and the Filipino rebels. The treaty provided for a payment of P800,000 to the rebels who would then be exiled to Hong Kong. Five Novo Ecijanos would accompany Aguinaldo's exile.[25] They were General Mariano Llanera, Benito Natividad, General Manuel Tinio,[26] and Joaquin Natividad.

Later on, Novo Ecijanos would continue to participate in the drama of war, revolution and the fight for freedom. They would fight when the revolt against Spain continued after the peace treaty broke down and the United States, after declaring war on Spain, promised to help Filipinos fight for freedom. Then, Novo Ecijanos again joined General Emilio Aguinaldo in the Philippine–American War (after it became evident the United States wanted to make the Philippines their own colony).[27]

When the Japanese tried to make the Philippines their own colony[28] at the outbreak of the Second World War in the Pacific, Novo Ecijanos would also make history by participating in guerilla activities. The exploits of the Novo Ecijano guerillas have in fact been made into literature, through the World War II novel Ghost Soldiers by Hampton Sides[29] and in Hollywood cinema, in the war film The Great Raid[30] based on the book.

American period

History records how the Philippine–American War began after American troops killed a Filipino soldier who was crossing the San Juan bridge on February 4, 1899.[31] One could also say, however, that hostilities and mistrust really began as early as August 13 the previous year. On that day, the Spanish colonial government in Intramuros surrendered to American forces instead of the Filipino soldiers that surrounded the Walled City. Thus began the United States own effort to have her own colonies, with the Philippines served, as it were, on a silver platter by the dying Spanish Empire thanks to the Treaty of Paris.[32][33]

When the war between Filipinos and Americans finally began, the fate of the infant Republic of the Philippines again lay in the hands of General Aguinaldo and his most trusted men who included Novo Ecijanos like General Llanera and General Tinio. And, as guerilla warfare became an effective tactic for the Filipinos, Novo Ecijanos were among the most feared guerillas. By the time the war ended on April 1, 1901, with Aguinaldo's surrender to the Americans,[34] Novo Ecijano guerillas who had fought so fiercely and bravely against two sets of foreign invaders reluctantly gave up. Still that was not the end of the association between them and the Americans. The end of the Philippine–American War also signaled a new beginning for Nueva Ecija and its people.

The railway

Commercial, interprovincial trade was carried out using the Rio Grande de Pampanga as main waterway, with trade outposts in San Isidro and Talipapa. Traders from Bulacan, Tondo and Manila regularly came to Nueva Ecija to carry back rice, palay, tobacco, sugar, corn and livestock.

Americans, however, wanted to shift from water-borne trade to a land-based trade system. Their idea for establishing this depended on something they were masters at: building railways. The American colonial government thought a railway could help boost Nueva Ecija's economic growth, in the same way that the US railway system helped unite and develop the economy of the North American continent. What made the railway project attractive was that it was less expensive than building roads. At first run by a private company, the US colonial government took over the ownership and management of the railway system by 1917.

The Americans were soon proven right: trade conducted through the railways boosted Nueva Ecija's income by 25% while transport costs went down by 25% to as much as 75%. With the train able to transport more goods and more people at a cheaper rate, the railway helped spark a rice boom in Gapan, San Isidro, Cabanatuan, Santa Rosa and Penaranda. Farmers could devote more land to growing rice and even secondary crops like onions and watermelons. More rice mills, farmers and farmer settlers came to Nueva Ecija. By 1936, there were 42 rice mills in Nueva Ecija, owned mostly by Chinese.[35]

The agriculture-based economic boom brought about by the train's huge load capacity and greater speed (compared to boats) encouraged waves of migrations to Nueva Ecija from places like Ilocos, Pampanga, Pangasinan, Tarlac and Bulacan.

The railway brought other changes to Nueva Ecija. While trade was still being done by waterways, settlements by necessity had to be established close to the rivers, where people's basic necessities came from. When the trains became the main mode of transporting goods and people, and with the influx of migrants, it became not only possible but crucial to build more communities further inland. This meant roads and irrigation systems were needed.[36]

Roads and irrigation

As communities expanded inward, first along the rivers and then along the railways, the need for roads and irrigation systems leading to communities in the plains became more urgent. These made it possible for the more remote towns—those farther away from both rivers and railroads—to grow crops and participate in trade, ending what was until then a very slow pace of economic development. By 1912 Governor Benito Natividad had appropriated funds to fast-track the building of roads and bridges linking these remote towns and municipalities to then provincial capital Cabanatuan.

The American government also constructed three major irrigation facilities: 1) The Talavera Irrigation System in 1924; 2) Penaranda River Irrigation System in 1930 and 3) Pampanga River Irrigation System in 1939.

By the time these irrigation systems went in full swing, combined with the railway system and the many rice mills, Nueva Ecija had been established as the "Rice Granary of the Philippines". From 1930 to 1939, rice production in Nueva Ecija was averaging more than 9 million cavans of rice.[37]

Homesteading and US-style tenancy

Unlike the American pioneers of the Old West, Filipinos were not so willing to occupy remote, unsettled and undeveloped areas. So when the American colonial government introduced homesteading, there were few takers among Filipinos. Homesteading could be done through a legal process of acquiring a land title, or even without a title at all. In the latter case however, the lack of a title makes the informal homesteader vulnerable to any legal action attempting to take the land away from him.[38]

When the Philippine Bill of 1902 was passed by the US Congress, the US colonial government was formally established in the Philippine islands. This meant the colonial government now had the authority to dispose of public lands on its own, without having to seek the approval of the President of the United States. Based on an earlier survey of public lands by the Philippine Commission, the new American colonial government offered public lands to settlers through homesteading, sale, purchase or lease.[39]

Under the American regime's homesteading system, an individual could get up to 16 hectares of land, while a corporation could get as much as 1,024 hectares. This did not result in a wide settlement of lands throughout the country, however. Nueva Ecija was one exception, as more settlers opted to homestead its lands. A 1928 Statistical Bulletin records nearly 70,000 hectares were given to more than five thousand homestead applicants.[40]

The homesteading efforts under the American regime ultimately failed in succeeding decades due to two major factors. First, the new farmer-settlers did not have enough capital to sustain farming costs. Without any financial assistance available from the government that granted them the land, farmer-settlers accumulated huge debts at very high interest rates from usurious moneylenders. Most of these homesteaders were later forced to sell their land and become tenant farmers instead.

Civil government in the American period

The civil governments established in various provinces in the Philippines under the American Occupation were supposed to teach Filipinos the basic principles of democracy, following US military rule. In general, each provincial government presided over local governments in each town or municipality. In turn, each municipality would have a president, vice-president and municipal councillors. These were elected by a select group of qualified electors for two-year terms.[41]

The second Philippine Commission went to what was then Nueva's provincial capital, San Isidro, on June 8, 1901, to begin proceedings for establishing the local and provincial governments. 16 out of Nueva Ecija's 19 towns were represented in the meeting. Elections of various representatives from the different towns were carried out successfully.

However, there was still the thorny problem of deciding whether or not to move the provincial capital. The dilemma was caused by events related to the Philippine–American War. First, Nueva Ecija had been a hotbed of resistance against the American Occupation, and was therefore in a state of siege. Four of its towns, Balungao, Rosales, San Quentin and Umingan, which were further away from the capital and already considered pacified by US forces, had been annexed to the province of Pangasinan.

The newly elected Nueva Ecija representatives were of the view that since a civil government under the Americans was already being established, it was time to return the four towns to Nueva Ecija. This would benefit the province as the four town were rich in natural resources. The fact that the towns were quite far from the capital, one of the representatives suggested, was no obstacle: the provincial capital could simply be moved to Cabanatuan. Other representatives objected to this proposal, pointing out that Cabanatuan had no infrastructures wherein to house the provincial government. The matter was not resolved until two years later, when the US governor-general signed Act No. 1748,[42] ordering the transfer of the capital to Cabanatuan by 1912.

The civil provincial government of Nueva Ecija was formally established by the Taft Commission[43] on June 11, 1901. The very first governor under this new system was Epifanio de los Santos. The main artery connecting most of Metro Manila, EDSA, is named for Governor de los Santos.

Education during the American period

Americans succeeded in making education widely available to Filipinos. While the Spanish government did, rather belatedly in their rule (in the middle of the 19th century), decide to establish public schools, it was the Americans who were able to improve it.[44]

A report of the United States' Philippine Commission in 1900 showed, only 10 out of 23 municipalities in Nueva Ecija had a public school established during the Spanish times and according to the Philippine Commission figures by 1902, 37 public primary schools were established, and 63 Novo Ecijano teachers supported by 16 American "Thomasites", part of the larger group of some 500 pioneer American teachers who arrived aboard the USAT Thomas in September 1901, to help establish an American public school system in the Philippines. The Education Act No. 74 approved by the Philippine Commission in 1901[45] proved to be the catalyst that made Novo Ecijanos rally behind the local and American teachers to make sure as many children as possible benefitted from the public school system.

People contributed in the form of cash, construction materials or labor, and even vacant lots for the building of schools. Community support for the building of schools was such that by 1906, there were already 99 schools in Nueva Ecija. The public school system was still hampered by problems. Relying only on local support, Nueva Ecija (and other places in the Philippines as well) could simply not meet the increasing needs of a growing number of schools, teachers and students. Given the high premium placed by Novo Ecijanos on education, a legislator from Nueva Ecija took the crucial step to compel the American colonial government to allot funding for public education via a legislative act.

Assemblyman Isauro Gabaldon of Nueva Ecija filed an education bill before the 1907 Philippine Assembly, which would later be approved and known as the Gabaldon Education Act. The bill required government to earmark P1,000,000 for public schools throughout the Philippine islands.[46]

Nueva Ecija benefitted tremendously from the new education law. By 1908 Nueva Ecija had 144 primary schools, 11 non-sectarian private schools, 18 sectarian private schools, nine intermediate schools, one vocational school and one agricultural school, the Central Luzon Agricultural School, which is currently now operating as Central Luzon State University.

World War II

Alamo Scouts in the Raid at Cabanatuan
Alamo Scouts in the Raid at Cabanatuan
Giving a sick man a drink as US POWs of Japanese, Philippine Islands, Cabanatuan prison camp
Giving a sick man a drink as US POWs of Japanese, Philippine Islands, Cabanatuan prison camp

During World War II the Imperial Japanese Army entered the province and Nueva Ecija was taken in 1942. On March 29, 1942, under the leadership of Luis Taruc the Hukbalahap (Hukbo ng Bayan Laban sa Hapon-People's Army Against the Japanese) was organized in Sitio Bawit, Barrio San Julian in the town of Cabiao. It was perceived to be the military arm of the Partido Komunista ng Pilipinas (Communist Party of the Philippines), that brought about the beginning of the early organized resistance of the Filipino people.[47]

During World War II under the Japanese occupation, The Philippine Commonwealth Army has the re-establishment of the Military General Headquarters, Military Bases and Camps here in the province of Nueva Ecija on January 3, 1942, to June 30, 1946, before the engagements of the Anti-Japanese Imperial Military Operations in Central Luzon include Nueva Ecija, Pampanga, Tarlac, Zambales, Bulacan and Northern Tayabas (now Aurora) from 1942 to 1945 and aided the local recognized guerrillas and the Hukbalahap Communist guerrillas against the Japanese Imperial forces since the Japanese Counter-Insurgencies (1942-1944) and the Allied Liberation (1944-1945).

In January to August 1945, combined American and Filipino soldiers liberated Nueva Ecija with the recognized guerrillas continuing to harass the Japanese at every opportunity. When Filipino soldiers of the 2nd, 22nd, 23rd, 25th and 26th Infantry Division of the Philippine Commonwealth Army and the 2nd Constabulary Regiment of the Philippine Constabulary was re-invading launches to entering liberated the province of Nueva Ecija and helping recognized guerrilla resistance fighter units, the Hukbalahap Communist guerrillas and the American troops against the Japanese Imperial forces during the Invasion of Nueva Ecija.

On January 30, 1945, American Army Rangers, Alamo scouts and Filipino guerrillas conducted a raid to liberate Allied civilians and prisoners of war in Cabanatuan, this was successful with over 516 rescued.[48] By January 31, 1945, the liberated civilians and POWs reached Talavera.

Contemporary era

After the war, much rebuilding was made at the urban areas of the province, specifically Cabanatuan and Gapan. This became the focus of the administrations of Quezon, Roxas, Quirino, Magsaysay, Garcia, and Macapagal. The city of Palayan was formally established by law and became the new capital of the province. Much of the rebuilding and establishment of economic centers in the province spiraled down due to the declaration of martial law by Marcos, which was toppled by the EDSA People Power Revolution, where the namesake came from a Novo Ecijano. Repairing the economy was continued by the Aquino and Ramos governments. The Estrada government led to a decline in agriculture in the province. The Arroyo and Aquino governments swayed the losses and regained vitality in the province. The Duterte government accession made wary ups and downs in the provincial economy.

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Carranglan

Carranglan

Carranglan, officially the Municipality of Carranglan, is a 1st class municipality in the province of Nueva Ecija, Philippines. According to the 2020 census, it has a population of 42,420 people. 

Sierra Madre (Philippines)

Sierra Madre (Philippines)

The Sierra Madre is the longest mountain range in the Philippines. Spanning over 540 kilometers (340 mi), it runs from the province of Cagayan down to the province of Quezon, forming a north–south direction on the eastern portion of Luzon, the largest island of the archipelago. It is bordered by the Pacific Ocean to the east, Cagayan Valley to the northwest, Central Luzon to the midwest, and Calabarzon to the southwest. Some communities east of the mountain range, along the coast, are less developed and so remote that they could only be accessed by taking a plane or a boat.

Caraballo

Caraballo

Caraballo is a Spanish surname. Notable people with the surname include:Edward Caraballo, American photojournalist Erwin Caraballo, Venezuelan sport wrestler Francisco Caraballo, Venezuelan baseball player José Caraballo (1930–1992), Puerto Rican painter Ramon Caraballo, Dominican Republic baseball player Wilfredo Caraballo, American politician

Pantabangan

Pantabangan

Pantabangan, officially the Municipality of Pantabangan, is a 1st class municipality in the province of Nueva Ecija, Philippines. According to the 2020 census, it has a population of 31,763 people. 

Bongabon

Bongabon

Bongabon, officially the Municipality of Bongabon, is a 2nd class municipality in the province of Nueva Ecija, Philippines. According to the 2020 census, it has a population of 66,839 people. 

Cagayan Valley

Cagayan Valley

Cagayan Valley, is an administrative region in the Philippines, located in the northeastern section of Luzon Island. It is composed of five Philippine provinces: Batanes, Cagayan, Isabela, Nueva Vizcaya, and Quirino. The region hosts four chartered cities of Cauayan, Ilagan, Santiago, and Tuguegarao.

Mountain Province

Mountain Province

Mountain Province is a landlocked province of the Philippines in the Cordillera Administrative Region in Luzon. Its capital is Bontoc while Bauko is the largest LGU. Mountain Province was formerly referred to as Mountain in some foreign references. The name is usually shortened by locals to Mt. Province.

Pampanga River

Pampanga River

The Pampanga River is the second largest river on the island of Luzon in the Philippines and the country's fifth longest river. It is in the Central Luzon region and traverses the provinces of Pampanga, Bulacan, and Nueva Ecija.

Fausto Cruzat y Góngora

Fausto Cruzat y Góngora

Fausto Cruzat y Góngora was a Spanish Governor-General of the Philippines from 1690 to 1701, therefore the second longest serving governor after Rafael María de Aguilar. He is thought to be one of the most capable of the Spanish colonial officials in his day.

Geography

The province is the largest in Central Luzon, covering a total area of 5,751.33 square kilometres (2,220.60 sq mi)[49]. Its terrain begins with the southwestern marshes near the Pampanga border. It levels off and then gradually increases in elevation to rolling hills as it approaches the mountains of Sierra Madre in the east, and the Caraballo and Cordillera Central ranges in the north.

Nueva Ecija is bordered on the northeast by Nueva Vizcaya, east by Aurora, south by Bulacan, southwest by Pampanga, west by Tarlac, and northwest by Pangasinan. The province has four distinct districts. The first district (northwest) has a mixture of Ilokano, Pangasinense, and Tagalog cultures. The second district (northeast) is the most complex as it has at least 10 different ethnic groups. The third district (central) has a metropolitan culture, coming from a majority of Tagalog culture, as Cabanatuan City is within it. And the fourth district (southwest) has a mixture of Kapampangan and Tagalog cultures.

Flora and fauna

Rafflesia consueloae, smallest raflessia species in the world, is found only in the Pantabangan–Carranglan Watershed Forest Reserve.
Rafflesia consueloae, smallest raflessia species in the world, is found only in the Pantabangan–Carranglan Watershed Forest Reserve.

The species of flora and fauna in the province is diverse on its north and east borders, which exhibit a shared ecosystem with the Caraballo mountains in the north and the Sierra Madre mountains in the east. The southeast areas are also known for its diverse fauna and flora due to the presence of the Minalungao National Park.

The ceratocentron fesselii orchid, which can only be found in the Pantabangan–Carranglan Watershed Forest Reserve in Carranglan, is considered one of the most critically endangered orchid species in the entire Southeast Asian region. It is endangered due to illegal gathering from the wild and due to the illegal black market trade. The forest reserve is also home to the endemic Rafflesia consueloae, which is the smallest rafflesia in the world and is found nowhere else. Philippine deer, Philippine warty pig, and other indigenous mouse species are also present in the province.

In a recent activity, the presence of a Philippine Eagle couple was discovered in the Sierra Madre side of Nueva Ecija. The couple are now protected by the local government units in that area. Snakes, lizards, and various amphibian species are also present, especially in wetter months.

Administrative divisions

The province is divided into four congressional districts comprising 27 municipalities and 5 cities. The province has the most cities in the Central Luzon region.

Political map of Nueva Ecija
Political map of Nueva Ecija
  •  †  Provincial capital and component city
  •  ∗  Component city
  •   Municipality

Climate

Climate data for Nueva Ecija
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) 32.1
(89.8)
32.8
(91.0)
34.4
(93.9)
36.2
(97.2)
35.3
(95.5)
34.0
(93.2)
32.8
(91.0)
32.1
(89.8)
32.4
(90.3)
32.8
(91.0)
32.7
(90.9)
32.0
(89.6)
33.3
(91.9)
Average low °C (°F) 21.1
(70.0)
21.6
(70.9)
22.7
(72.9)
23.8
(74.8)
24.6
(76.3)
24.5
(76.1)
24.2
(75.6)
24.4
(75.9)
24.1
(75.4)
23.7
(74.7)
22.9
(73.2)
21.9
(71.4)
23.3
(73.9)
Average rainy days 1 2 2 3 13 16 22 21 20 10 8 4 122
Source: Storm247 [51]

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Caraballo Mountains

Caraballo Mountains

The Caraballo Mountains is a mountain range in the central part of Luzon island in the Philippines, situated between the Cordillera Central and Sierra Madre mountain ranges. The mountains serve as the location of the headwaters of the Cagayan River, the longest in the country.

Cordillera Central (Luzon)

Cordillera Central (Luzon)

The Cordillera Central or Cordillera Range is a massive mountain range 320 km long north-south and 118 km east-west. The Cordillera mountain range is situated in the north-central part of the island of Luzon, in the Philippines. The mountain range encompasses all provinces of the Cordillera Administrative Region, as well as portions of eastern Ilocos Norte, eastern Ilocos Sur, eastern La Union, northeastern Pangasinan, western Nueva Vizcaya, and western Cagayan.

Nueva Vizcaya

Nueva Vizcaya

Nueva Vizcaya, officially the Province of Nueva Vizcaya, is a landlocked province in the Philippines located in the Cagayan Valley region in Luzon. Its capital is Bayombong. It is bordered by Benguet to the west, Ifugao to the north, Isabela to the northeast, Quirino to the east, Aurora to the southeast, Nueva Ecija to the south, and Pangasinan to the southwest. Quirino province was created from Nueva Vizcaya in 1966.

Aurora (province)

Aurora (province)

Aurora is a province in the Philippines located in the eastern part of Central Luzon region, facing the Philippine Sea. Its capital is Baler and borders, clockwise from the south, the provinces of Quezon, Bulacan, Nueva Ecija, Nueva Vizcaya, Quirino, and Isabela.

Bulacan

Bulacan

Bulacan, officially the Province of Bulacan, is a province in the Philippines located in the Central Luzon region. Its capital is the city of Malolos. Bulacan was established on August 15, 1578, and part of the Metro Luzon Urban Beltway Super Region.

Pampanga

Pampanga

Pampanga, officially the Province of Pampanga, is a province in the Central Luzon region of the Philippines. Lying on the northern shore of Manila Bay, Pampanga is bordered by Tarlac to the north, Nueva Ecija to the northeast, Bulacan to the east, the Manila Bay to the central-south, Bataan to the southwest and Zambales to the west. Its capital is the City of San Fernando. Angeles City is the largest LGU but while geographically within Pampanga, it is classified as a first-class, highly urbanized city and has been governed independently of the province since it received its charter in 1964.

Pangasinan

Pangasinan

Pangasinan, officially the Province of Pangasinan is a coastal province in the Philippines located in the Ilocos Region of Luzon. Its capital is Lingayen. Pangasinan is in the western area of Luzon along the Lingayen Gulf and the South China Sea. It has a total land area of 5,451.01 square kilometres (2,104.65 sq mi). According to the 2020 census it has a population of 3,163,190.  The official number of registered voters in Pangasinan is 1,651,814. The western portion of the province is part of the homeland of the Sambal people, while the central and eastern portions are the homeland of the Pangasinan people. Due to ethnic migration, the Ilocano people settled in the province.

Pantabangan–Carranglan Watershed Forest Reserve

Pantabangan–Carranglan Watershed Forest Reserve

The Pantabangan–Carranglan Watershed Forest Reserve is a conservation area located in the upper reaches of the Pampanga River in Nueva Ecija, Philippines, and borders the Sierra Madre and Caraballo Mountains in Aurora and Nueva Vizcaya. It encompasses 84,500 hectares of the drainage basin surrounding the Pantabangan Lake, an impoundment of the Pampanga River by the Pantabangan Dam. The multi-purpose dam is situated at the confluence of Pampanga River's two headwaters, namely the Pantabangan and Carranglan Rivers in the municipality of Pantabangan. It stretches above the dam site for 21 kilometres (13 mi) to where Carranglan River originates in the Caraballo on the north, and for 18 kilometres (11 mi) to where Pantabangan River originates in the Sierra Madre on the east. It is considered a critical watershed for the agricultural economy and hydroelectric power generation in the region of Central Luzon.

Minalungao National Park

Minalungao National Park

Minalungao National Park is a protected area of the Philippines located in the municipality of General Tinio, Nueva Ecija in Central Luzon. The park covers an area of 2,018 hectares centered along the scenic Peñaranda River bordered on both sides by up to 16-meter high limestone walls in the foothills of the Sierra Madre mountain range. It was established in 1967 by virtue of Republic Act No. 5100.

Philippine deer

Philippine deer

The Philippine deer, also known as the Philippine sambar or Philippine brown deer, is a vulnerable deer species endemic to the Philippines. It was first described from introduced populations in the Mariana Islands, hence the specific name.

Philippine warty pig

Philippine warty pig

The Philippine warty pig is one of four known species in the pig genus (Sus) endemic to the Philippines. The other three endemic species are the Visayan warty pig, Mindoro warty pig and the Palawan bearded pig, also being rare members of the family Suidae. Philippine warty pigs have two pairs of warts, with a tuft of hair extending outwards from the warts closest to the jaw. It has multiple native common names, but it is most widely known as baboy damo in Tagalog.

Legislative districts of Nueva Ecija

Legislative districts of Nueva Ecija

The legislative districts of Nueva Ecija are the representations of the province of Nueva Ecija in the various national legislatures of the Philippines. The province is currently represented in the lower house of the Congress of the Philippines through its first, second, third, and fourth congressional districts.

Demographics

Population census of Nueva Ecija
YearPop.±% p.a.
1903 134,147—    
1918 227,096+3.57%
1939 416,762+2.93%
1948 467,769+1.29%
1960 608,362+2.21%
1970 851,294+3.41%
1975 947,995+2.18%
1980 1,069,409+2.44%
1990 1,312,680+2.07%
1995 1,505,827+2.61%
2000 1,659,883+2.11%
2007 1,843,853+1.46%
2010 1,955,373+2.16%
2015 2,151,461+1.84%
2020 2,310,134+1.41%
Source: Philippine Statistics Authority [50][52][52]

The population of Nueva Ecija in the 2020 census was 2,310,134 people, [4] with a density of 400 inhabitants per square kilometre or 1,000 inhabitants per square mile.

The majority of the population speaks both Tagalog and English fluently. The province primarily speaks Tagalog dialect called Bulacan Tagalog that resembles poetic form of speech, with a Novoecijano flavor, that added loanwords of Ilocano and Kapampangan origin.

Ethnicity

According to the Atlas Filipinas published by the National Commission for Culture and the Arts of the Philippines, 11 local ethnic languages with living ethnic speakers are present in Nueva Ecija, namely Tagalog (in the entire province), Abellan (in a small part in the centre), Kapampangan (in the southwest-most section), Kankanaey (in the east central), Ilokano (in the northern areas and in a small section in the centre, spoken with a Tagalog accent), Alta (in the east central), Ayta Mag-antsi (in the centre and the north-central), Bugkalut (in Carranglan), Ibaloy (in Carranglan), and Kalanguya and Isinay (in Carranglan).[53]

Religion

The province is predominantly Roman Catholic (about 82.43%). Other Christian groups are Iglesia ni Cristo (5.55%), Born-again Christians, Philippine Independent Church (2.50%), Evangelical (1.70%) & Methodists (1.62%).[54] The remaining minorities (6.2%) are the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Jehovah's Witnesses and Seventh-day Adventist & Muslims. Anitists, and animists are also represented in the province practiced by indigenous ethnic groups.[55]

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National Commission for Culture and the Arts

National Commission for Culture and the Arts

The National Commission for Culture and the Arts of the Philippines is the official government agency for culture in the Philippines. It is the overall policy making body, coordinating, and grants giving agency for the preservation, development and promotion of Philippine arts and culture; an executing agency for the policies it formulates; and task to administering the National Endowment Fund for Culture and the Arts (NEFCA) – fund exclusively for the implementation of culture and arts programs and projects.

Iglesia ni Cristo

Iglesia ni Cristo

Iglesia ni Cristo is an independent Nontrinitarian Christian church, founded in 1913 and registered by Felix Y. Manalo in 1914 as a unipersonal religious corporation to the Insular Government of the Philippines.

Philippine Independent Church

Philippine Independent Church

The Philippine Independent Church is an independent Christian denomination, in the form similar to that of a national church, in the Philippines. Its schism from the Catholic Church was proclaimed in 1902 by members of the Unión Obrera Democrática Filipina, due to the mistreatment of the Filipinos by Spanish priests and influenced by the executions of José Rizal and Filipino priests Mariano Gomez, José Burgos, and Jacinto Zamora during Spanish colonial rule.

Evangelicalism

Evangelicalism

Evangelicalism, also called evangelical Christianity or evangelical Protestantism, is a worldwide interdenominational movement within Protestant Christianity that affirms the centrality of being "born again", in which an individual experiences personal conversion; the authority of the Bible as God's revelation to humanity ; and spreading the Christian message. The word evangelical comes from the Greek (euangelion) word for "good news".

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, informally known as the LDS Church or Mormon Church, is a nontrinitarian Christian church that considers itself to be the restoration of the original church founded by Jesus Christ. The church is headquartered in the United States in Salt Lake City, Utah, and has established congregations and built temples worldwide. According to the church, it has over 16.8 million members and 54,539 full-time volunteer missionaries. The church is the fourth-largest Christian denomination in the United States, with over 6.7 million US members as of 2021. It is the largest denomination in the Latter Day Saint movement founded by Joseph Smith during the early 19th-century period of religious revival known as the Second Great Awakening.

Jehovah's Witnesses

Jehovah's Witnesses

Jehovah's Witnesses is a millenarian restorationist Christian denomination with nontrinitarian beliefs distinct from mainstream Christianity. The group reports a worldwide membership of approximately 8.7 million adherents involved in evangelism and an annual Memorial attendance of over 21 million. Jehovah's Witnesses are directed by the Governing Body of Jehovah's Witnesses, a group of elders in Warwick, New York, United States, which establishes all doctrines based on its interpretations of the Bible. They believe that the destruction of the present world system at Armageddon is imminent, and that the establishment of God's kingdom over the earth is the only solution for all problems faced by humanity.

Economy

Nueva Ecija is the biggest rice producer in Central Luzon and in the Philippines, thus, often referred to as the Rice Bowl of the Philippines.
Nueva Ecija is the biggest rice producer in Central Luzon and in the Philippines, thus, often referred to as the Rice Bowl of the Philippines.
Rice fields in Guimba
Rice fields in Guimba

Nueva Ecija is considered the main rice growing province of the Philippines and the leading producer of onions in the country.

Major industries

Nueva Ecija is one of the top producers of agricultural products in the country. Its principal crops is mainly rice but corn and onion are produced in quantity. The province is often referred to as the "Rice Granary of the Philippines".[63][64] Other major crops are mango, calamansi (calamondin orange), banana, garlic, and vegetables. The municipality of Bongabon at the eastern part of the province at the foot of the Sierra Madre mountains and its neighbouring Laur and Rizal are the major producers of onion and garlic. Bongabon is called the "onion capital of the country". A sunflower farm is housed inside the Central Luzon State University campus in Science City of Muñoz.

Education is very well established as a major industry in the province. The leading educational institutions are the Central Luzon State University in Science City of Munoz and Nueva Ecija University of Science and Technology, Wesleyan University-Philippines, the only internationally accredited school in Central Luzon; College of the Immaculate Conception; La Fortuna College and Araullo University in Cabanatuan City. There are 18 tertiary level institutions in Cabanatuan City alone.

Health services is a notable industry. Hospitals cater to patients from Nueva Ecija and some from neighbouring provinces. There are schools of nursing and midwifery, mostly in Cabanatuan City.

There are poultry farms in a number of towns, most notably, the Lorenzo poultry farms in San Isidro which is one of the largest in the country. Duck raising and egg production is an important livelihood. Fishponds are unevenly distributed throughout the province but the largest concentrations are in San Antonio, Santa Rosa, and Cuyapo.

Fabrication of tricycle "sidecars" is widespread in the province, notably in Santa Rosa, where prices are as low as PhP 7,000 which is practically the cheapest in the country.

Several areas have mineral deposits. Copper and manganese have been found in General Tinio, Carranglan, and Pantabangan. The upper reaches of Carranglan and Palayan City are said to contain gold.[65]

In June 2008, it received the title "Milk Capital of the Philippines" because Nueva Ecija gathers more milk from cows and carabaos (water buffaloes) than any other place in the Philippines.[66] The Philippine Carabao Center is in the CLSU compound in Science City of Munoz.

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Philippine Statistics Authority

Philippine Statistics Authority

The Philippine Statistics Authority, abbreviated as PSA, is the central statistical authority of the Philippine government that collects, compiles, analyzes and publishes statistical information on economic, social, demographic, political affairs and general affairs of the people of the Philippines and enforces the civil registration functions in the country.

Central Luzon

Central Luzon

Central Luzon, designated as Region III, is an administrative region in the Philippines, primarily serving to organize the 7 provinces of the vast central plains of the island of Luzon, for administrative convenience. The region contains the largest plain in the country and produces most of the country's rice supply, earning itself the nickname "Rice Granary of the Philippines". Its provinces are: Aurora, Bataan, Bulacan, Nueva Ecija, Pampanga, Tarlac and Zambales. Pangasinan was formerly a province of Central Luzon before President Marcos signed Presidential Decree No. 1, 1972, incorporating it into Ilocos Region. Additionally, the province of Aurora was part of the defunct political region Southern Tagalog when the region was divided into Calabarzon and Mimaropa, upon the issuance of Executive Order No. 103, dated May 17, 2002, by then-President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, which transferred Aurora to Central Luzon.

Philippines

Philippines

The Philippines, officially the Republic of the Philippines, is an archipelagic country in Southeast Asia. It is situated in the western Pacific Ocean and consists of around 7,641 islands that are broadly categorized under three main geographical divisions from north to south: Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao. The Philippines is bounded by the South China Sea to the west, the Philippine Sea to the east, and the Celebes Sea to the southwest. It shares maritime borders with Taiwan to the north, Japan to the northeast, Palau to the east and southeast, Indonesia to the south, Malaysia to the southwest, Vietnam to the west, and China to the northwest. The Philippines covers an area of 300,000 km2 (120,000 sq mi) and, as of 2021, it had a population of around 109 million people, making it the world's thirteenth-most populous country. The Philippines has diverse ethnicities and cultures throughout its islands. Manila is the country's capital, while the largest city is Quezon City; both lie within the urban area of Metro Manila.

Central Luzon State University

Central Luzon State University

Central Luzon State University is a state university on a 658-hectare campus in Muñoz, Nueva Ecija, Philippines. It is the lead agency of the Muñoz Science Community and the seat of the Regional Research and Development Center in Central Luzon. To date, CLSU is one of the premiere institutions for agriculture in the Philippines and in Southeast Asia known for its research in aquaculture, ruminants, crops, orchard, and water management. It has also been placed between the sixth and the twenty-first spot for the most academically-excellent university in the country for various years, surpassing most schools in Metro Manila. It has been placed in the 100 most significant schools in Asia multiple times as well.

Nueva Ecija University of Science and Technology

Nueva Ecija University of Science and Technology

The Nueva Ecija University of Science and Technology (NEUST), is a state university located in the province of Nueva Ecija, Central Luzon, Philippines, with its flagship campus at Cabanatuan City. The university offers graduate and undergraduate courses in many specialized fields as well as vocational training programs.

Immaculate Conception

Immaculate Conception

The Immaculate Conception is the belief that the Virgin Mary was free of original sin from the moment of her conception. First debated by medieval theologians, it proved so controversial that it did not become part of official Catholic teaching until 1854, when Pius IX gave it the status of dogma in the papal bull Ineffabilis Deus.

La Fortuna College

La Fortuna College

La Fortuna College (LFC) is a school located in Nueva Ecija, Philippines, offering education from the pre-school up to the undergraduate level.

Araullo University

Araullo University

Araullo University, also referred to by its acronym "AU " or simply "Araullo", is a private, non-sectarian secondary and higher education institution in Cabanatuan, Nueva Ecija, Philippines. It was established in 1950. The university offers a wide range of secondary, undergraduate and graduate programs in its two campuses.

Cuyapo

Cuyapo

Cuyapo, officially the Municipality of Cuyapo, is a 1st class municipality in the province of Nueva Ecija, Philippines. According to the 2020 census, it has a population of 68,066 people. 

General Tinio

General Tinio

General Tinio, officially the Municipality of General Tinio, is a 1st class municipality in the province of Nueva Ecija, Philippines. According to the 2020 census, it has a population of 55,925 people. 

Carranglan

Carranglan

Carranglan, officially the Municipality of Carranglan, is a 1st class municipality in the province of Nueva Ecija, Philippines. According to the 2020 census, it has a population of 42,420 people. 

Pantabangan

Pantabangan

Pantabangan, officially the Municipality of Pantabangan, is a 1st class municipality in the province of Nueva Ecija, Philippines. According to the 2020 census, it has a population of 31,763 people. 

Tourism

Tourism in Nueva Ecija is focused on gatherings in churches, parks, and festivals. Some of these heritage areas are the Gapan Church, a Byzantine architecture church built from 1856 to 1872 which has been declared as a National Cultural Treasure, the first in the entire province; the Quezon Family Rest House in Bongabon which was also the place of death of former First Lady Aurora Quezon; Centuries-old brick walls of the Tabacalera in San Isidro remain as witness to the Novo Ecijanos' 100-year oppression, from 1782 to 1882, when the province became the center of the tobacco monopoly in Central Luzon and was thus restricted from raising other crops; the statue of Philippine hero General Antonio Luna astride a horse stands at the Cabanatuan plaza in front of the cathedral on the exact spot where the brave general was assassinated in 1899 in the city that adopted him subsequently; Site of the arrest of Philippine hero Apolinario Mabini, known as "the sublime paralytic", by the Americans on December 10, 1899, in Cuyapo; the Triala House of General Manual Tinio, built during the early Commonwealth period, it features ornately designed turn-of-the-century furniture and a life-size figure of esteemed Nove Ecijano Don Kapitan Berong in stained glass; The Grand Sedeco house in San Isidro, which General Emilio Aguinaldo frequented, marks this gallant town that has proven time and again to be cradle of Filipino heroes - it was here that General Frederick Funston planned the capture of Aguinaldo, first President of the Philippine republic, during the Philippine–American War; Wright Institute of San Isidro, of the first high schools established outside Metro Manila during the American period; the Dalton Pass located in Capintalan, Carranglan, the five-hectare area blessed with a cool climate houses the monument of General Dalton and a tower that borders the provinces of Nueva Ecija and Nueva Vizcaya - uphill is a World War II memorial in black marble where a historical account of the war had been etched in English and Japanese; the WWII Concentration Camp in Cabanatuan City; Nampicuan Church; Carranglan Church; Pantabangan Church; the grand Minalungao National Park,[67] known for its high limestone formations sculpted by the Penaranda river; General Luna Fall in Rizal; Mount Olivete in Bongabon, which is frequented by pilgrims due to its holy spring; the Capintalan, which is a reserve known for its WWII tunnels, forests, rivers, and artifacts and has been maintained by the only Ifugao community in Nueva Ecija, located in Carranglan; Palaspas Falls in San Jose City; Gabaldon Falls in Gabaldon which is within the Sabani Estate Agricultural College; Peñaranda Church, which is one of the oldest in the province, built initially in 1887; Diamond Park in San Jose City; Pantabangan Dam, built in 1947, is the first and only rubber dam in Asia; the campus of the Philippine Rice Research Institute in Muñoz which is the main research and experimentation arm of the government for rice and other crops; Central Luzon State University, which is the most academically excellent in the province and the only Novo Ecijano university to be declared a cultural property of the nation; CLSU Agricultural Museum; Living Fish Museum in Muñoz; the Philippine Carabao Center in Muñoz, which is the main arm of the national government on carabao research and development; Mount Mapait in Palayan City; and the Philippine Eagle Exclusive Area in the Nueva Ecija Sierra Madres.

Tourist attractions:

  • Minalungao Park
  • Pantabangan Lake
  • Lupao Pinsal Falls
  • Nabao Lake
  • Fort Magsaysay Dam (Pahingahan)
  • Tanawan

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San Isidro, Nueva Ecija

San Isidro, Nueva Ecija

San Isidro, officially the Municipality of San Isidro,(Tagalog: Bayan ng San Isidro, Kapampangan: Balen ning San Isidro), is a 2nd class municipality in the province of Nueva Ecija, Philippines. According to the 2020 census, it has a population of 54,372 people. 

Central Luzon

Central Luzon

Central Luzon, designated as Region III, is an administrative region in the Philippines, primarily serving to organize the 7 provinces of the vast central plains of the island of Luzon, for administrative convenience. The region contains the largest plain in the country and produces most of the country's rice supply, earning itself the nickname "Rice Granary of the Philippines". Its provinces are: Aurora, Bataan, Bulacan, Nueva Ecija, Pampanga, Tarlac and Zambales. Pangasinan was formerly a province of Central Luzon before President Marcos signed Presidential Decree No. 1, 1972, incorporating it into Ilocos Region. Additionally, the province of Aurora was part of the defunct political region Southern Tagalog when the region was divided into Calabarzon and Mimaropa, upon the issuance of Executive Order No. 103, dated May 17, 2002, by then-President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, which transferred Aurora to Central Luzon.

Apolinario Mabini

Apolinario Mabini

Apolinario Mabini y Maranan was a Filipino revolutionary leader, educator, lawyer, and statesman who served first as a legal and constitutional adviser to the Revolutionary Government, and then as the first Prime Minister of the Philippines upon the establishment of the First Philippine Republic. He is regarded as the "utak ng himagsikan" or "brain of the revolution" and is also considered as a national hero in the Philippines. Mabini's work and thoughts on the government shaped the Philippines' fight for independence over the next century.

Carranglan

Carranglan

Carranglan, officially the Municipality of Carranglan, is a 1st class municipality in the province of Nueva Ecija, Philippines. According to the 2020 census, it has a population of 42,420 people. 

Nueva Vizcaya

Nueva Vizcaya

Nueva Vizcaya, officially the Province of Nueva Vizcaya, is a landlocked province in the Philippines located in the Cagayan Valley region in Luzon. Its capital is Bayombong. It is bordered by Benguet to the west, Ifugao to the north, Isabela to the northeast, Quirino to the east, Aurora to the southeast, Nueva Ecija to the south, and Pangasinan to the southwest. Quirino province was created from Nueva Vizcaya in 1966.

World War II

World War II

World War II or the Second World War, often abbreviated as WWII or WW2, was a world war that lasted from 1939 to 1945. It involved the vast majority of the world's countries—including all of the great powers—forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis powers. World War II was a total war that directly involved more than 100 million personnel from more than 30 countries.

Dalton Pass

Dalton Pass

Dalton Pass, also called Balete Pass, is a zigzag road and mountain pass that joins the provinces of Nueva Ecija and Nueva Vizcaya, in central Luzon island of the Philippines. It is part of Cagayan Valley Road segment of Pan-Philippine Highway.

Central Luzon State University

Central Luzon State University

Central Luzon State University is a state university on a 658-hectare campus in Muñoz, Nueva Ecija, Philippines. It is the lead agency of the Muñoz Science Community and the seat of the Regional Research and Development Center in Central Luzon. To date, CLSU is one of the premiere institutions for agriculture in the Philippines and in Southeast Asia known for its research in aquaculture, ruminants, crops, orchard, and water management. It has also been placed between the sixth and the twenty-first spot for the most academically-excellent university in the country for various years, surpassing most schools in Metro Manila. It has been placed in the 100 most significant schools in Asia multiple times as well.

Politics

The Governor of Nueva Ecija is the highest-ranking official in the province, after the President of the Philippines. The province is divided into five congressional districts, which consists of 27 municipalities and five cities, namely: Cabanatuan, San Jose, Palayan, Gapan and Science City of Muñoz. The provincial capital is Palayan City.

Each district has a specialization, where district 1 is known for its organic agriculture, district 2 is known for its highlands and protected forests, district 3 is known for its urban and economic settings, and district 4 is known for its diverse cultural celebrations. Each district is under a congressperson, whom represents the district at the House of Representatives in Congress.

Political alliances in the province are extremely strong, with the ruling party, the Liberal Party of the Philippines, staying in power since the post-martial law era. Being an agricultural province, the main political agenda for the province is agricultural and aquacultural advancements, along with high level education, health, and job and business generation. The current governor of the province is Aurelio Umali and its vice governor is Anthony Umali.

Capitols of Nueva Ecija
Capitols of Nueva EcijaNew Provincial Capitol (seat of Government) of Nueva Ecija is at Palayan City.The Governor and Provincial Officers still hold office at the Old Provincial Capitol at Cabanatuan City
New Provincial Capitol (seat of Government) of Nueva Ecija is at Palayan City.
Capitols of Nueva EcijaNew Provincial Capitol (seat of Government) of Nueva Ecija is at Palayan City.The Governor and Provincial Officers still hold office at the Old Provincial Capitol at Cabanatuan City
The Governor and Provincial Officers still hold office at the Old Provincial Capitol at Cabanatuan City

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Governor of Nueva Ecija

Governor of Nueva Ecija

The governor of Nueva Ecija is the local chief executive of the Central Luzon province of Nueva Ecija in the Luzon Island, Philippines.

Cabanatuan

Cabanatuan

Cabanatuan, officially known as the City of Cabanatuan, is a 1st class component city in the province of Nueva Ecija, Philippines. According to the 2020 census, it has a population of 327,325 people,  making it the most populous city in Nueva Ecija and the fifth-most populous in Central Luzon.

San Jose, Nueva Ecija

San Jose, Nueva Ecija

San Jose, officially known as the City of San Jose, is a 3rd class component city in the province of Nueva Ecija, Philippines. According to the 2020 census, it has a population of 150,917 people. 

Palayan

Palayan

Palayan, officially the City of Palayan, is a 5th class component city and capital of the province of Nueva Ecija, Philippines. According to the 2020 census, it has a population of 45,383 people,  making it the most sparsely populated city in the Philippines.

Gapan

Gapan

Gapan, officially known as the City of Gapan, is a 4th class component city in the province of Nueva Ecija, Philippines. According to the 2020 census, it has a population of 122,968 people. 

Aurelio Umali

Aurelio Umali

Aurelio Matias Umali is a Filipino politician from the third district of Nueva Ecija, Philippines. Umali is the youngest elected governor in the province since his first government office position. He currently serves as a Governor of Nueva Ecija. He was a governor for three terms from 2007 to 2016 and was re-elected in 2019.

Culture

Novo Ecijano culture is a mixture of Tagalog, Kapampangan, Pangasinense, Ilokano, and other indigenous cultures within the province. A melting pot of culture, the province has a varied of festivals, traditions, and beliefs that constitute Novo Ecijano heritage, along with tangible heritage structures, scenes, and objects.

Cosmopolitanism

Novoecijano architecture is based on indigenous Filipino types, Spanish colonial types, American colonial types, and modernist types. In rural areas, the bahay kubo is still present, but has decreased significantly. Spanish and American colonial architecture, like those in the National Capital Region, have slowly been demolished one after the other, signaling a destruction of colonial heritage. Despite this, there are still colonial structures preserved and conserved such as town churches and some houses surrounding them. The current architectural trend in the province is modernist architecture, signaling an end to colonial architecture in the province.

Music

The music of the Novo Ecijanos is more concentrated on the Tagalog traditional and international music. The province shares the music heritage of other Tagalog provinces such as Rizal, Batangas, Bataan, Bulacan, Quezon, and Laguna.

Visual arts

Many Novo ecijanos have been internationally known for their visual arts. The mediums are diverse, from garlic oil, blood, hair, threads, clays, pastels, leaves, mud, bronze, marble, cotton, pina, and paints which introduced as Indigenous Materials or Indigenouism movement started by Internationally known Hair and Blood Painter of the Philippines.

Values

As a general description, the distinct value system of Filipinos is rooted primarily in personal alliance systems, especially those based in kinship, obligation, friendship, religion, and commercial relationships.

Filipino values are, for the most part, centered around maintaining social harmony, motivated primarily by the desire to be accepted within a group.[496] The main sanction against diverging from these values are the concepts of "Hiya", roughly translated as 'a sense of shame', and "Amor propio" or 'self-esteem'.[496] Social approval, acceptance by a group, and belonging to a group are major concerns. Caring about what others will think, say or do, are strong influences on social behavior among Filipinos.

Other elements of the Filipino value system are optimism about the future, pessimism about present situations and events, concern and care for other people, the existence of friendship and friendliness, the habit of being hospitable, religious nature, respectfulness to self and others, respect for the female members of society, the fear of God, and abhorrence of acts of cheating and thievery.

Dance

A very Tagalog hotpot of culture, the novoecijano dance scheme is ruled by the carinosa, tinikling, and other Tagalog traditional dances.

Cuisine

Novo ecijano cuisine is varied. In its northwest, seafood and vegetable dishes with a lot of salt is prevalent due to its proximity with Pangasinan. In its northwest, highland crops are much prized. In its central and southern areas, food is very diverse due to its proximity with numerous sources of ingredients.

Literature

Novo Ecijano literature is defined by a strong nationalistic approach and a strong ethnically grounded scheme. The literature of the province is honed by the two literature departments of the Central Luzon State University, among others.

The best known Tagalog novelist of the province is Lázaro Francisco. His novels depicted life in an agrarian society that gave rise to the social unrest of his period (1950s and 1960s). One of his novels was serialized by Liwayway Magazine, the most popular Tagalog magazine at that time until the 1970s.[68] But unlike the Partido Komunista ng Pilipinas, Lazaro advocated for the peaceful resolution of the agrarian problem, relying on the benevolence of the government and the landlords.[69]

Lázaro Francisco was from Tarlac. As a child, her parents immigrated to Nueva Ecija. He practically grew up and studied in Cabanatuan. One of the elementary schools in Cabanatuan has been named after him.[69] He was named a National Artist in 2012. He was also a Freemason, and one of the distinguished Master of Masonic Lodge 53 in Cabanatuan City. He was named a National Artist in 2012.

Media

Nueva Ecija has many of its own television channels and radio stations. Almost all towns have their own radio stations.

Sports

The most prevalent sport in the province, like in other provinces in the country, is basketball. Volleyball, badminton, cockfighting, and sepak takraw are the other big sports in the province.

Games

Traditional Novo Ecijano games are mainly Tagalog in nature. These games include luksong baka, patintero, piko, and tumbang preso. The novo ecijano art group "Makasining" is also a main author of "Laro ng Lahi" or Philippine Indigenous Games preservation advocacy.

Festivals

One of the most historic provinces of the Philippines, festivals and fiestas are celebrated in different places in Nueva Ecija. Local history, customs and traditions can be witnessed in the province's festivals of locality.[70][71]

Festival City/Municipality Date Notes
Banatu Cabanatuan City January 29 – February 4 “Banatu Festival,” takes its name from “banatu” which means “vine”
Taong Putik Festival Aliaga June 24 At the crack of dawn, scores of mud-covered, barely dressed devotees make their appearance, asking for alms and candles form the wide awake town folks. This practice mimics a biblical myth about St. John the Baptist
Ragragsak Ti Guimba Guimba, Nueva Ecija February to March -
Holy Week Rituals of Puncan Carranglan Holy Week The unique Holy Week rites of (Puncan)Carranglan one of the oldest towns in Nueva Ecija
Kariton Festival Licab March 28 Celebrated during the annual celebration of the founding anniversary of Licab
Baybayanting Festival Lupao July 25 Honoring the town's patron – Señor Santiago. or Saint James
Araquio Festival Penaranda May The festival dramatized the spread of Christianity in the country and the war between Christians and Muslims
Tanduyong Festival San Jose City fourth Sunday of April The people of San Jose dance through the main street in a colorful, enchanting celebration of the blessing of the harvest of onion. The streets are filled with contingents of dancers outfitted in striking, multi-hued native costumes
Pagibang Damara San Jose City April or May A celebration for a bountiful harvest of the city
Pandawan Festival Pantabangan April The word “Pandaw” means assurance of an abundant fresh-water catch each time the festival is celebrated
Sibuyas Festival Bongabon April 1–10 Celebrated as a form of thanksgiving and a way to show that Bongabon is one of the largest producers of onion in Asia
Tsinelas Festival Gapan August 6–25 Commemorates Gapan's major industry with the Tsinelas Festival on the anniversary of their cityhood.
Paistima Festival Cabiao February 5–11 Commemorate the founding anniversary of the town
Kabyawan Festival Cabiao May 8–16 Thanks giving to the feast of patron's town proper Saint John Nepomocene
Kalamay Festival San Leonardo August 25 Thanksgiving for the abundance of harvest using rice as main ingredients of kalamay is the town's major cultural activity.
Papaya Festival General Tinio March Holy Mass and religious activities are celebrated to honor the town's patron saint, San Isidro de Labrador. Papaya is the town's former name after a fruit tree abundant in the town.

Patimyas Ani Festival - Quezon, Nueva Ecija

• A festival wherein elementary students from each barangay are doing street dancing and showdown in the football field in Quezon, Nueva Ecija. It celebrates every last week of January annually.

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Lázaro Francisco

Lázaro Francisco

Lázaro Francisco y Angeles, also known as Lazaro A. Francisco was a Filipino novelist, essayist and playwright. Francisco was posthumously named a National Artist of the Philippines for Literature in 2009.

Wikivoyage

Wikivoyage

Wikivoyage is a free web-based travel guide for travel destinations and travel topics written by volunteer authors. It is a sister project of Wikipedia and supported and hosted by the same non-profit Wikimedia Foundation (WMF). Wikivoyage has been called the "Wikipedia of travel guides".

Aliaga, Nueva Ecija

Aliaga, Nueva Ecija

Aliaga, officially the Municipality of Aliaga, is a 2nd class municipality in the province of Nueva Ecija, Philippines. According to the 2020 census, it has a population of 70,363 people. 

Carranglan

Carranglan

Carranglan, officially the Municipality of Carranglan, is a 1st class municipality in the province of Nueva Ecija, Philippines. According to the 2020 census, it has a population of 42,420 people. 

Licab

Licab

Licab, officially the Municipality of Licab, is a 4th class municipality in the province of Nueva Ecija, Philippines. According to the 2020 census, it has a population of 29,269 people. 

Lupao

Lupao

Lupao, officially the Municipality of Lupao, is a 3rd class municipality in the province of Nueva Ecija, Philippines. According to the 2020 census, it has a population of 45,917 people. 

Tanduyong Festival

Tanduyong Festival

Nueva Ecija, the largest province in Central Luzon, is a historic province with colorful and remarkable festivals. This province, with 5 cities and 27 municipalities, has diverse cultural traditions that became significant part of Novo Ecijanos culture and tradition.

San Jose, Nueva Ecija

San Jose, Nueva Ecija

San Jose, officially known as the City of San Jose, is a 3rd class component city in the province of Nueva Ecija, Philippines. According to the 2020 census, it has a population of 150,917 people. 

Pagibang Damara

Pagibang Damara

Pagibang Damara is a festival in San Jose City, Nueva Ecija wherein its people celebrates to give thanks for a good harvest in line with their celebration of the City Fiesta on the second or third week of April every year.

Pantabangan

Pantabangan

Pantabangan, officially the Municipality of Pantabangan, is a 1st class municipality in the province of Nueva Ecija, Philippines. According to the 2020 census, it has a population of 31,763 people. 

Bongabon

Bongabon

Bongabon, officially the Municipality of Bongabon, is a 2nd class municipality in the province of Nueva Ecija, Philippines. According to the 2020 census, it has a population of 66,839 people. 

Health

The health issues facing the province are minimal because of the health establishments dotting all over the province. National health issues such as dengue, and malaria are on rise during rainy seasons, while HIV/AIDS is still low, but 2015 annual growth rate is unarguably high.

Education

The level of literacy in the province is very high. The top four universities in the province are Central Luzon State University at Science City of Muñoz, Wesleyan University Philippines, Nueva Ecija University of Science and Technology and Araullo University, all located at Cabanatuan City. The universities offer a diverse range of specializations. Every municipality also has local colleges. Central Luzon State University, a national cultural property, has also been accredited as being the twenty first to the sixth most academically excellent in the entire country. The university has also been cited as one of the 100 most significant educational institutions in Asia, overwhelming most schools in Metro Manila and other metropolitan areas in the country.

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Central Luzon State University

Central Luzon State University

Central Luzon State University is a state university on a 658-hectare campus in Muñoz, Nueva Ecija, Philippines. It is the lead agency of the Muñoz Science Community and the seat of the Regional Research and Development Center in Central Luzon. To date, CLSU is one of the premiere institutions for agriculture in the Philippines and in Southeast Asia known for its research in aquaculture, ruminants, crops, orchard, and water management. It has also been placed between the sixth and the twenty-first spot for the most academically-excellent university in the country for various years, surpassing most schools in Metro Manila. It has been placed in the 100 most significant schools in Asia multiple times as well.

Wesleyan University Philippines

Wesleyan University Philippines

Wesleyan University-Philippines (WU-P) is a private, sectarian, and non-profit higher education institution run by the United Methodist Church (UMC) in Cabanatuan City, Nueva Ecija, Philippines. It was founded in 1946 as the Philippine Wesleyan College. It is named after John Wesley, the founder of Methodism. The university offers preschool, grade school, high school undergraduate, and graduate programs. It also initiated the Support for the Handicapped and their Rehabilitation through Education (SHARE) Program, the first school in Central Luzon to integrate hearing-impaired students into mainstream classes.

Nueva Ecija University of Science and Technology

Nueva Ecija University of Science and Technology

The Nueva Ecija University of Science and Technology (NEUST), is a state university located in the province of Nueva Ecija, Central Luzon, Philippines, with its flagship campus at Cabanatuan City. The university offers graduate and undergraduate courses in many specialized fields as well as vocational training programs.

Araullo University

Araullo University

Araullo University, also referred to by its acronym "AU " or simply "Araullo", is a private, non-sectarian secondary and higher education institution in Cabanatuan, Nueva Ecija, Philippines. It was established in 1950. The university offers a wide range of secondary, undergraduate and graduate programs in its two campuses.

Notable people

  • General Mariano Llanera † (1855–1942) — fought in the provinces of Bulacan, Tarlac, Pampanga, and Nueva Ecija.
  • General Manuel Tinio † (1877 –1924) — the youngest General[72] of the Philippine Revolutionary Army, and was elected Governor[73] of the Province of Nueva Ecija, Republic of the Philippines in 1907.
  • General Benito Natividad † (1874–1964) — military leader, a governor, and a judge who fought in the Philippine–American War and was one of the last to surrender together with Gen. Manuel Tinio, after the capture of Aguinaldo.
  • Engr. Ponciano A. Bernardo † (December 2, 1905 — April 28, 1949) was the second Mayor of Quezon City. Ponciano Bernardo was born in Santa Rosa, Nueva Ecija, whose father immigrated from Pandi, Bulacan to PAPAYA now called General Tinio, Nueva Ecija. Ponciano Bernardo School and Ponciano Bernardo Park in Cubao, Quezon City is a memorial for him. Ponciano was killed in an ambush by Hukbalahap with the Philippine First Lady Aurora Quezon on their route to Aurora. Ponciano was appointed by the second Philippine President Manuel Quezon, prior to being Mayor he was Secretary of Department of Public Works and Highways. Ponciano was a Filipino engineer and politician who served as mayor of Quezon City, holding the position from 1947 until his death in 1949. It was during his tenure that Quezon City was designated as the capital city of the Philippines.
  • Juan Pajota (c.1914 – 1976) was involved in the Raid at Cabanatuan, an action which took place in the Philippines on 30 January 1945 by US Army Rangers and Filipino guerrillas and resulted in the liberation of more than 500 American prisoners of war (POWs) from a Japanese POW camp near Cabanatuan City
  • Epifanio de los Santos † (April 7, 1871 — April 18, 1928) — Epifanio de los Santos y Cristóbal, sometimes known as Don Pañong or Don Panyong he was born in 1871 in Malabon, province of Rizal, (now an independent city) to Escolastico de los Santos of Nueva Ecija and musician Antonina Cristóbal of Malabon. He was a noted Filipino historian, literary critic, art critic, jurist, prosecutor, antiquarian, archivist, scholar, painter, poet, musician, musicologist, philosopher, philologist, bibliographer, translator, journalist, editor, publisher, paleographer, ethnographer, biographer, researcher, civil servant, patriot and hero. He was appointed Director of the Philippine Library and Museum by Governor General Leonard Wood in 1925. He was appointed district attorney of San Isidro, Nueva Ecija. He was later elected as governor of Nueva Ecija in 1902 and 1904. His election victory made him the first democratically elected provincial governor and head of the Federal Party in Nueva Ecija.
  • Ameurfina Melencio-Herrera, Filipino lawyer and jurist who served as Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the Philippines from 1979 to 1992. Herrera is a granddaughter of Emilio Aguinaldo.
  • Felipe Padilla de León a Filipino classical music composer, conductor, and scholar. He was named as National Artist of Philippines for Music.
  • Lázaro Francisco is one of the finest Tagalog novelist. One of his novels has been serialized by Liwayway magazine, the most popular Tagalog magazine in the 1950s-1970s. A Freemason and one of the distinguished Master of Masonic Lodge 53 of Cabanatuan City, he was named National Artist of Philippines for Literature in 2012.
  • Catalino "Lino" Ortiz Brocka, also known as Lino Brocka (April 3, 1939 – May 22, 1991) born in Pilar, Sorsogon but he grew up in San Jose City, Nueva Ecija. He was a Filipino film director, widely regarded as one of the most influential and significant Filipino filmmakers in the history of Philippine cinema. In 1983, he founded the organization Concerned Artists of the Philippines (CAP), dedicated to helping artists address issues confronting the country.
  • Francisco Fronda † (22 December 1896 – 17 February 1986) a Filipino scientist, Father of Poultry Science in the Philippines. He was a National Scientist of the Philippines for Animal Husbandry.
  • E. Arsenio Manuel † (1909 - 2003) a Philippine academic, historian, and anthropologist best known for his contributions to Philippine anthropology, history, literature, and linguistics known as the "Dean of Filipino Anthropology" and "Father of Philippine Folklore
  • Heber Gonzalez Bartolome (born November 4, 1948) — a Filipino folk and folk rock singer, songwriter, composer, poet, guitarist, bandurria player, bluesman, and painter. His music was influenced by the "stylistic tradition" of Philippine folk and religious melodies.
  • Rogelio R. Sikat (Also known as Rogelio Sícat) (1940–1997) — A Filipino fictionist, playwright, translator and educator. He was born to Estanislao Sikat and Crisanta Rodriguez on June 26, 1940, in Alua, San Isidro, Nueva Ecija. He is the sixth of eight children. Sicat graduated with a B.Litt. in Journalism from the University of Santo Tomas and an M.A. in Filipino from the University of the Philippines.
  • Dorothy Acueza Jones, also known as Nida Blanca † (January 6, 1936 – November 7, 2001) — Nida Blanca as popularly known by her stage name, was a Filipina actress. She starred in over 163 movies and 14 television shows and received over 16 awards for movies and six awards for television during her 50-year film career. She was named one of 15 Best Actress of all Time by YES magazine.
  • Néstor de Villa † (July 6, 1928 – February 21, 2004) — was a Filipino actor frequently cast in musical films. He was a gifted dancer often paired with frequent onscreen partner Nida Blanca in both movies and television. His dancing talent led some to call him the "Fred Astaire of the Philippines", though the same moniker had also been given to Bayani Casimiro.
  • Rafael V. Mariano (born October 24, 1956)) — former partylist representative for Anakpawis and former Secretary of Agrarian Reform
  • Jaime de los Santos (born April 1946) — is a retired military general in the Philippines. He joined the Philippine Army in 1969 after graduating from the Philippine Military Academy with a degree Bachelor of Science in Military Engineering. De los Santos later on served as a Brigade Commander, Chief of Staff and Commanding General of an Infantry Division and Superintendent of the Philippine Military Academy.
  • Frankie Evangelista † (July 24, 1934 — February 18, 2004) — A former radio and television broadcaster of ABS-CBN since 1953.
  • Josepina "Josie" Padiermos Fitial (born November 25, 1962) — The current First Lady of the Northern Mariana Islands and the wife of Governor Benigno Fitial. She became First Lady upon the inauguration of her husband as the sixth governor of the Northern Mariana Islands on January 9, 2006.[1]
  • Fred Panopio † (February 2, 1939 — April 22, 2010) — A Filipino singer and actor who rose to fame in the 1970s.
  • Oscar A. Solis (October 13, 1953) — Oscar Azarcon Solis was born in San Jose City, Philippines. He studied at Christ the King Seminary of the Society of the Divine Word in Quezon City, Philippines, and at the Pontifical Royal Seminary, University of Santo Tomas, in Manila. After migrating to the United States in 1984, Father Solis served as associate pastor of St. Rocco's parish, New Jersey, 1984–1988. With permission from his Ordinary in the Philippines, he went to the Diocese of Houma-Thibodaux in 1988 where he was appointed associate pastor of St. Joseph Co-Cathedral. He was incardinated into the Diocese of Houma-Thibodaux in 1992, and was named pastor of St. Joseph Co-Cathedral in 1999. He has been a member of the Diocesan Priests' Council, the Personnel Committee and the College of Consultors. Solis is the first Filipino-American to be consecrated a bishop.[74]
  • Joe Taruc (September 18, 1946 - September 30, 2017) - Born in Gapan City, Jose Malgapo Taruc, Jr. is his full name. He is a longtime radio broadcaster of DZRH and also a host of his radio programs Pangunahing Balita and Damdaming Bayan.
  • Anthony Taberna (January 16, 1975) — Born in San Isidro, Nueva Ecija, Anthony "Tunying" Taberna is a Filipino television news anchor and radio broadcaster. At ABS-CBN, Taberna has hosted television and radio programs covering news and public affairs. He is currently hosting Umagang Kay Ganda (where he gained popularity in the segment "Punto por Punto") and XXX: Exklusibong, Explosibong, Exposé. As a DZMM broadcaster, Taberna is one of the lead anchors for Dos Por Dos, a late afternoon show, along with Gerry Baja.
  • Kathryn Bernardo (March 26, 1996) — Born in Cabanatuan City, Kathryn Chandria Manuel Bernardo is her full name. She is a Filipina actress and her career started in 2003. She is best known for her role as Mara in the primetime Filipino drama, Mara Clara. Kathryn is currently a contract artist of Star Magic and ABS-CBN and most recently starred as Ana Bartolome in the 2011 drama film, Way Back Home. She currently plays the main protagonist, Christina Charlota Tampipi, in the primetime series Got to Believe.
  • Willie Revillame (January 27, 1961) — A Novo Ecijano with roots from Cabanatuan City but he was born in Manila, Philippines. He started his career in 1986. He is a television host, actor, comedian and a recording artist in the Philippines.
  • Jose "Kaka" Balagtas — A film director, writer, and actor. He was the Vice Mayor (2010–2016) of San Antonio, Nueva Ecija.
  • Joanna Cindy Miranda — A Filipina model and host from Rizal, Nueva Ecija, who won the Binibining Pilipinas-Tourism 2013 crown and will represent the country in Miss Tourism Queen International in Lhasa, Tibet in the first week of September, 2013.
  • Paolo Ballesteros — (born November 29, 1982, in Cabanatuan City, is a Filipino actor, TV host and model. He has appeared in films and several TV shows. He has won numerous international awards, all portraying the struggles of the LGBT community.
  • John Paul Lizardo — Also known as Japoy Lizardo, is a Filipino Taekwondo Asian Games Bronze medalist, Actor and commercial model from Cabanatuan City.
  • Yen Santos — A Filipina actress and dancer. Part of ABS-CBN Star Magic. Had appeared in Growing Up and teleserye Pure Love. From Cabanatuan City.
  • Jason Abalos (born Jan. 14, 1985) — An actor, dancer and commercial model; from Pantabangan, Nueva Ecija. In 2022, he was elected member of the provincial board representing the 2nd District.
  • Rommel Padilla (born Jan. 4, 1965) — A politician, businessman, actor and endorser; from Cuyapo, Nueva Ecija. He is the father of Daniel Padilla and the brother of elected Senator Robin Padilla. He was the former member of the provincial board (2007–2010, 2016–2019) representing the 1st District.
  • Ramon Valmonte— A writer and founder of Nueva Ecija Journal. Professor from Wesleyan University Philippines descendant of Pantaleón Valmonte y Rufino, sometimes referred to as Pantaleón Belmonte a capitan municipal (mayor) of Gapan and a general during the Philippine Revolution against Spain.
  • Anselmo Roque— An agricultural columnist. Multiawarded journalist and educator Anselmo Roque. One of the longest-serving provincial writers of the Inquirer, Roque joined the paper in 1986 as its correspondent in Nueva Ecija province.
  • Ryza Cenon — A Filipina actress born on December 21, 1987, in Gapan City, as Rhiza Ann Cenon Simbulan. She is an actress, known for Lovestruck (2005), Mr. & Mrs. Cruz (2018) and Sana ay ikaw na nga (2012).
  • Renato Bautista — He was born in 1980 in Nueva Ecija, Philippines as Renato M. Bautista Jr. He is an assistant director and director, known for 'Di natatapos ang gabi (2010), Palitan (2012) and Expressway (2016).
  • Bert Matias — He was born on July 6, 1937, in Cabanatuan City, Philippines as Lamberto I. Matias. He is an actor, known for Fred Claus (2007), Book of Swords (1996) and Renegade Force (1998).
  • Vic Sotto — Multi-awarded Filipino actor, television host, comedian.
  • Ruel S. Bayani — Filipino film and television director, writer, producer, who is best known for directing movies like One More Try, and No Other Woman and co-directing television shows like Budoy, Kokey, Mula Sa Puso.
  • Samboy de Leon — Filipino professional basketball player who last played for the Star Hotshots of the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA). National Athletic Association of Schools, Colleges and Universities (NAASCU), where he was awarded the league MVP in 2014 played for CEU Scorpions.
  • Coleen Perez — (born Coleen Nicole Perez Borgonia on 26 January 1995 in Gapan City, (Formerly known as Maricris Garcia and also known as Faye Lorenzo) is a Filipina commercial model and actress, known for her roles such as Molly Rivera in GMA Network's More Than Words.
  • Nikki Brianne F. Samonte — better known as Nikki "Nikz" Samonte (born March 1, 2000) in Nueva Ecija is a Filipina child actress, singer and model. She is currently handled and managed by ABS-CBN's talent agency, Star Magic.
  • Manuel Chua (born Oct. 29, 1980) — A model and actor; from Cabanatuan City. He was discovered in the Filipino version of the reality game show Pinoy Fear Factor which was aired on ABS-CBN from 2008 to 2009. In 2022, he was elected member of the city council of San Jose.
  • Fred Panopio — (February 2, 1939 – April 22, 2010) was a Filipino singer and actor who rose to fame in the 1970s. This particular kind of music is evident is many of his hits, such as "Pitong Gatang", "Markado", and "Tatlong Baraha". He was also an occasional actor, and appeared in several movies alongside Jess Lapid and Fernando Poe, Jr. He is also known sing the Poe's movie's theme songs.In 1999, Panopio and Victor Wood released an album and became part of the OPM legends.
  • Kurt Isaiah Perez — (born December 1, 1997) in Cabanatuan City is a Filipino former child actor. He became famous for being the Ultimate Male Survivor of StarStruck Kids, the reality-based talent search show of GMA in the Philippines.

Discover more about Notable people related topics

Mariano Llanera

Mariano Llanera

Mariano Núñez Llanera was a Filipino revolutionary general from Cabiao, Nueva Ecija who fought in his aforementioned home province, and also in the neighboring provinces of Bulacan, Tarlac, and Pampanga. He is considered one of the "three Fathers" of the Cry of Nueva Ecija, along with Pantaleon Valmonte and Manuel Tinio.

Bulacan

Bulacan

Bulacan, officially the Province of Bulacan, is a province in the Philippines located in the Central Luzon region. Its capital is the city of Malolos. Bulacan was established on August 15, 1578, and part of the Metro Luzon Urban Beltway Super Region.

Pampanga

Pampanga

Pampanga, officially the Province of Pampanga, is a province in the Central Luzon region of the Philippines. Lying on the northern shore of Manila Bay, Pampanga is bordered by Tarlac to the north, Nueva Ecija to the northeast, Bulacan to the east, the Manila Bay to the central-south, Bataan to the southwest and Zambales to the west. Its capital is the City of San Fernando. Angeles City is the largest LGU but while geographically within Pampanga, it is classified as a first-class, highly urbanized city and has been governed independently of the province since it received its charter in 1964.

Manuel Tinio

Manuel Tinio

Manuel Tinio y Bundoc was the youngest General of the Philippine Revolutionary Army, and was elected Governor of the Province of Nueva Ecija, Republic of the Philippines in 1907. He is one of those considered to be the three "Fathers of the Cry of Nueva Ecija", along with Pantaleon Valmonte and Mariano Llanera.

Philippine Revolutionary Army

Philippine Revolutionary Army

The Philippine Revolutionary Army, later renamed Philippine Republican Army, was the official armed forces of the First Philippine Republic from its formation in March of 1897 to its dissolution in November of 1899 in favor of guerilla operations in the Philippine–American War.

Benito Natividad

Benito Natividad

General Benito Alejandrino Natividad was a military leader, a governor and a judge. His parents were Gervasia Alejandrino and Mamerto Natividad, Sr. a lawyer and the First Martyr of Nueva Ecija who was executed by the Spanish authorities on Sept. 26, 1896 in San Isidro, Nueva Ecija. He fought in the Philippine Revolution against Spain and was exiled to Hong Kong with Aguinaldo and other revolutionaries in accordance with the Treaty of Biak Na Bato. He also fought in the Philippine–American War and was one of the last to surrender together with Gen. Manuel Tinio, after the capture of Aguinaldo. He was wounded twice in battle.

Philippine–American War

Philippine–American War

The Philippine–American War or the Filipino–American War, previously referred to as the Philippine Insurrection or the Tagalog Insurgency by the United States, was an armed conflict between the First Philippine Republic and the United States that started on February 4, 1899, and ended on July 2, 1902. The conflict arose in 1898 when the United States, rather than acknowledging the Philippines' declaration of independence, annexed the Philippines under the Treaty of Paris at the conclusion of the Spanish–American War. The war can be seen as a continuation of the Philippine struggle for independence that began in 1896 with the Philippine Revolution against Spanish rule.

Ponciano Bernardo

Ponciano Bernardo

Ponciano A. Bernardo was a Filipino engineer and politician who served as mayor of Quezon City, holding the position from 1947 until his death in 1949. It was during his tenure that Quezon City was designated as the capital city of the Philippines.

Pandi, Bulacan

Pandi, Bulacan

Pandi, officially the Municipality of Pandi, is a 2nd class municipality in the province of Bulacan, Philippines. According to the 2020 census, it has a population of 155,115 people. 

Hukbalahap

Hukbalahap

The Hukbong Bayan Laban sa Hapon, better known by the acronym Hukbalahap, was a communist guerrilla movement formed by the farmers of Central Luzon. They were originally formed to fight the Japanese, but extended their fight into a rebellion against the Philippine government, known as the Hukbalahap Rebellion, in 1946. It was put down through a series of reforms and military victories by Defense Secretary, and later President, Ramon Magsaysay.

Aurora Quezon

Aurora Quezon

Aurora Antonia Quezon was the wife of Philippine President Manuel Luis Quezon and the First Lady of the Philippines from 1935 to 1944. Although she is recognized as the second First Lady of the Philippines, she was actually the first spouse of a Philippine president to be addressed as such, the honorific being unknown in the Philippines prior to Manuel Quezon's presidency. Much beloved by Filipinos, Quezon was known for involvement with humanitarian activities and served as the first chairperson of the Philippine National Red Cross.

Aurora (province)

Aurora (province)

Aurora is a province in the Philippines located in the eastern part of Central Luzon region, facing the Philippine Sea. Its capital is Baler and borders, clockwise from the south, the provinces of Quezon, Bulacan, Nueva Ecija, Nueva Vizcaya, Quirino, and Isabela.

Source: "Nueva Ecija", Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, (2022, December 2nd), https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nueva_Ecija.

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