25 June 2017

How the Population of Batangas’ Towns and Cities Has Grown from the 1903 to the 2015 Census

Nipa huts in a reconcentrado camp in Batangas circa 1903.  Image credit:  "The Last Holdouts".

In 1902-03, the fledgling American colonial government in the Philippines undertook a population census as approved by the United States Philippine Commission. The census was undertaken by American military forces1. Historians take statistics yielded by this 1903 census with a grain of salt because it was nowhere near as thorough as population surveys are undertaken in the present day. Still, this census was probably so much more accurate than anything that the Spaniards ever undertook.

This article, as dictated by the scope of this web site, is limited to statistics relevant to Batangas. However, the numbers will likely be reflective of population growth elsewhere in the country 114 years after the fact. The growth rates, needless to say, when compared to present day statistics are staggering.

In the context of Batangas, the 1903 census was likely affected by several significant events that preceded it: the Philippine Revolution and the Fil-American War; Gen. J. Franklin Bell’s scorched earth policy in Batangas and the introduction of re-concentration camps; and the outbreaks of diseases such as cholera, smallpox, dysentery and others that were probably abetted because the cramped conditions of these camps2.

All readers please note that the town of Santa Teresita is not included in this article. In 1903, when the census was undertaken, the town did not as yet exist. It only came to be in 1961 with land formerly belonging to the towns of Taal, San Luis and San Nicolas.

Balayan

Balayan’s population in 1903 was 8,493. Curiously, the 1903 Census presented separated statistics for Calatagan, which was part of Balayan until 1912. At any rate, compared to Balayan’s population of 90,699 as per the 2015 Philippine Census, the percentage increase is an amazing 967.93%.

1903
2015
% Inc
Balayan
8,493
90,699
967.93

Batangas

The town of Batangas in 1903 had a population of 33,131. Compared to its 2015 population of 329,874, which makes it the second most populous place in the province, the percentage increase has been 895.67%.

1903
2015
% Inc
Batangas Town
33,131
329,874
895.67

Bauan

Bauan’s population in 1903 was pegged at 39,094. At the time, however, the towns of San Luis, Alitagtag, San Pascual and Mabini were still part of the municipality. Since separate statistics were provided for San Luis in 1903, we take Bauan’s 2015 population of 91,297 and add 2015 statistics for Alitagtag (25,300), San Pascual (65,424) and Mabini (46,211) for a grand total of 228,232. The percentage increase is 483.8%.

1903
2015
% Inc
Bauan + Alitagtag, San Pascual, Mabini
39,094
228,232
483.80

Calaca

The population of Calaca in 1903 was 5,838. By 2015, the town’s population had risen by 1,302.18% to 81.859.

1903
2015
% Inc
Calaca
5,838
81,859
1,302.18

Calatagan

As mentioned, Calatagan in 1903 was still part of Balayan but for some reason, its population statistics were provided separately. The number was 2,654. Compared to the town’s 2015 population of 56,449, the percentage increase is an amazing 2,026.94%.

1903
2015
% Inc
Calatagan
2,654
56,449
2,026.94

Cuenca

Cuenca’s 1903 population was 5,990. By 2015, it had risen to 32,783 for a percentage increase of 447.3%.

1903
2015
% Inc
Cuenca
5,990
32,783
447.30

Ibaan

Ibaan, which separated from Batangas Town in 1832, had a population of 7,178 in 1903. As per the 2015 Census, the town’s population was 52,970 for a percentage increase of 637.95%.

1903
2015
% Inc
Ibaan
7,178
52,970
637.95

Lemery

Lemery’s population in 1903 was placed at 11,150. This number had risen to 93,157 as per the 2015 Census; but we have to add the population of Agoncillo (38,059) because the latter was part of Lemery in 1903. The grand total is 131,216 for a percentage increase of 1,076.83%.

1903
2015
% Inc
Lemery + Agoncillo
11,150
131,216
1,076.83

Lian

Lian or Liang, as stated in the 1903 Census, was still a barrio of Nasugbu and at the time had a population of 2,552. Why this number was not added to that of its mother town is anyone’s guess. By 2015, already a separate town, the population had risen to 52,660 for a percentage increase of 1,963.48%.

1903
2015
% Inc
Lian
2,552
52,660
1,963.48


Lipa Town

The town of Lipa’s population in 1903 was 37,934. At this time, however, Mataasnakahoy, Balete and Malvar were still part of Lipa. By 2015, Lipa, already a city, had become Batangas’ most populous place with 332,386 inhabitants. We now add the 2015 population of Mataasnakahoy (29,187), Balete (22,661) and Malvar (56,270) for a grand total of 440,504 and a percentage increase of 1,061.24%.

1903
2015
% Inc
Lipa + Balete, Malvar, Mataasnakahoy
37,934
440,504
1,061.24

Lobo

The population of Lobo in 1903 was 5,781. By 2015, this had risen to 41,504 for a percentage increase of 617.94%.

1903
2015
% Inc
Lobo
5,781
41,504
617.94

Nasugbu

Nasugbu’s population in 1903 was a mere 6,680 compared to the 2015 count of 134,113 or a percentage increase of 1,907.68%. Nasugbu is in the present day Batangas’ second most populous town.

1903
2015
% Inc
Nasugbu
6,680
134,113
1,907.68

Rosario

The population of Rosario in 1903 was 8,326. This figure, however, included Padre Garcia, which at the time was still a barrio of Rosario. In 2015, Rosario’s inhabitants had risen to 116,764. To this we add Padre Garcia’s 2015 population of 48,302 for a grand total of 165,066 and a percentage increase of 1,882.54%.

1903
2015
% Inc
Rosario + Padre Garcia
8,326
165,066
1,882.54

San Jose

San Jose in 1903 had a population of 8,996. By 2015, the figure had risen to 76,971 for a percentage increase of 755.61%.

1903
2015
% Inc
San Jose
8,996
76,971
755.61

San Juan

San Juan or San Juan de Bocboc as it was known in 1903, had a population of 11,853. This had risen to 108,585 in 2015, for a percentage increase of 816.1%.

1903
2015
% Inc
San Juan
11,853
108,585
816.10

San Luis

The population of San Luis in 1903 was 5,316, which included the inhabitants of the island of Tingloy. At the time, Tingloy was still administered from the town. As per the 2015 Census, San Luis’ population had grown to 33,149. To this we add the population of Tingloy (17,919) for a grand total of 51,068 and a percentage increase from the 1903 figure of 860.65%.

1903
2015
% Inc
San Luis + Tingloy
5,316
51,068
860.65

Santo Tomas

The town of Santo Tomas had a population of just 8,488 in 1903. By 2015, the census reported its population had grown to 179,844 or a percentage increase of 1,795.49%. Santo Tomas has become Batangas’ most populous municipality.

1903
2015
% Inc
Santo Tomas
9,488
179,844
1,795.49

Taal

In 1903, the historic town of Taal had a population of 17,525, including the inhabitants of San Nicolas which at the time was still a barrio of Taal. By 2015, Taal’s population had risen to 56,327. To this, we add the population of San Nicolas (22,653) for a grand total of 51,068 and a percentage increase of 860.65%. Taal’s population growth since 1903 has been the lowest of all the towns and cities of Batangas.

1903
2015
% Inc
Taal + San Nicolas
17,525
78,980
350.67

Talisay

The town of Talisays population in 1903 was 5,657. This figure included the population of Laurel, which at the time was still part of Talisay. By 2015, Talisay’s population had risen to 45,301. To this, we add Laurel’s population of 39,444 for a grand total of 84,745 or a percentage increase of 1,398.06%.

1903
2015
% Inc
Talisay + Laurel
5,657
84,745
1,398.06

Tanauan Town

The town of Tanauan had a population of 18,263 in 1903. By 2015, Tanauan was already a city and fourth most populous geo-political subdivision of Batangas with 173,366. This represents an 849.27% increase from the 1903 figure.

1903
2015
% Inc
Tanauan
5,657
84,745
1,398.06

Taysan

The town of Taysan was still part of Rosario in 1903 but again for some reason, its statistics were separated. The reported population then was just 3,386. This had grown to 38,007 by 2015, representing a percentage increase of 1,022.47%.

1903
2015
% Inc
Taysan
3,386
38,007
1,022.47

Tuy

Finally, there is the small town of Tuy which in 1903 had a population of 2,430. As per the 2015 census, the town’s population had grown to 43,743 or a percentage increase of 1,700.12%.

1903
2015
% Inc
Tuy
2,430
43,743
1,700.12

Notes and references:
1Census in the Philippines,” Wikipedia.
2 “The Zones of Batangas,” by Glen A. May, published in “The Philippine Studies,” 1981.
3 1903 statistics from “Census of the Philippine Islands, Taken under the Direction of the Philippine Commission in the Year 1903,” Volume II, published 1905.
4 2015 Results from the Philippine Population Census of 2015, online at the Philippine Statistics Authority.

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