A Prehistoric Burial Site at Sitio Castillo

Note: This is on permanent exhibit at the Museo de Baler. The texts are from the same exhibit and prepared by the National Museum. The burial site excavated was at Sitio Castillo, Brgy. Sabang just on the right side of the road before the entrance to the Carmen T. Valenzuela Elementary School.

Update 2014: The exhibit is no longer on display.

A Prehistoric Burial Site
Sitio Castillo, Brgy. Sabang, Baler, Aurora
(a permanent exhibit at the Museo de Baler by the National Museum)

A Prehistoric Burial Site in Baler
A Prehistoric Burial Site in Baler

In September 1989, then Governor Eunice Cucueco reported the discovery of artifacts and destruction of archeological site by pot hunters at Sitio Castillo to the National Museum (NM), a government agency mandated by law to protect and preserve the cultural properties of the country. Hence, the NM sent a team of archeologist to assess the site and save artifactual materials as well as to conduct an archaeological excavation in the area.

Surrounded by Baler Bay, mountainous areas, and Kinalapan and Castillo rivers, the Julio Site is located on a sand dune at Sitio Castillo about 3 kilometers south of the poblacion of Baler. In this site, the archeological excavation undertaken by the National Museum yielded a primary burial dated back from the 14th to 15th centuries A.D.

A Prehistoric Burial Site in Baler
A Prehistoric Burial Site in Baler

Exposed at the depth of 120 centimeters from the present ground surface underlying a recent garbage pit, a human skeleton was found in an extended position, lying on its back with arms laid parallel to the body and oriented to east to west direction. On top of the skull was a large blue and white porcelain bowl that was used as a head cover. A small stoneware jar with dark brown glaze was found in an upside down position on the left shoulder blade. Both tradeware ceramics are attributed to the Ming Dynasty Period. Other associated artifacts found were glass and shell beads, and shell bracelets. The camelian beads were found in a cluster at the left lower leg. On the other hand, shell bracelets belonging to Conus (Lithoconus) leopardus were found on each wrist rested on the pelvic bones. Other associated materials found on this layer were fish bones and shells.

A Prehistoric Burial Site in Baler
A Prehistoric Burial Site in Baler

Julio Site

The Julio site is the only archeological site ever recorded in the province of Aurora. This is a primary burial site associated with personal belongings and grave goods. This was a tradition among prehistoric Filipinos where they buried their dead with grave goods or funerary offerings, such as earthenware, stoneware, porcelain and stone and metal implements. It was believed that the dead needed food or material possessions as he journeyed from the land of the living to the land of the dead.

Furthermore, the recovery of blue-and-white ceramics, stoneware jars and carnelian beads provided evidences that Baler was a part of trading activities even before the arrival of the Spaniards.

A Prehistoric Burial Site in Baler
A Prehistoric Burial Site in Baler

Primary Burial in Julio Site

There are various burial practices in the Philippines. One is primary burial, wherein corpses are interred directly into the ground in extended and supine or flexed positions.

The human skeletal remains recovered in Julio Site, Baler was in supine position with arms extended on the sides or parallel to the body, and the head facing the east. It was associated with grave goods that can be dated to the Neolithic Period. These were tradeware ceramics, shell bracelet, and glass beads, funerary offerings known locally as pabaon. It has been common practice in the Philippines to bury the dead with objects believed to ease a soul’s journey to the afterlife.

Weekly Wrap-up (1/15/2010 to 1/23/2010)

Note: Some links require you to be a fan of the Batangbaler Facebook Page before you can open them. If you still don’t have a Facebook account, please take time to create one. It will only take 2 minutes. But if you start playing Farmville, it will take most of your time.

These are my two kids GJ and Dylan doing their homework during one of the regular Baler brownouts. There was a 24-hour brownout that happened last Wednesday.
These are my two kids GJ and Dylan doing their homework during one of the regular Baler brownouts. There was a 24-hour brownout that happened last Wednesday.

Lawstude’s Journeys blog posted great pictures of Baler as well as what he thinks are the 5S that makes this town great.

After months of hibernation, Batangbaler is back. This post summarizes what happened in our dear old town last year.

A lookback at the 1968 Casiguran Earthquake that knocked down Ruby Tower in Binondo.

News from Philippine Star: Aseza project to generate 300 jobs.

This week was also the Division Meet Week so traditionally, it’s a rainy week even though PAGASA satellite photos show a clear sky over Baler. Ymay posted some great photos of the opening parade and the cheerdance competition at the Provincial Capitol grounds. We also found out that the “running” theme song that’s being played during the Division Meet was titled Que Sera Mi Vida by the Gibson Brothers.

It was also the feast of the Sto. Niño and Ate Donna posted pictures of the “prusisyon” in honor of the child Jesus.

The list of all the local candidates for the May 2010 election was posted here courtesy of Comelec. A quick browse of the list shows that most of the usual suspects will be running for the election.

The Aurora Surfriders Association, Inc. announces the 4th Aurora Surfing Challenge to be held on February 11-14.

News from philstar.com: 6 Aurora Comelec executives face relief.

From scubajournal.net: The Sport Scuba Divers Association of Aurora was organized.

More Baler pictures from Lawstude’s Journal: Pictures of Digisit. And Pictures of PAGASA which is actually still Digisit.

That’s it folks. See you next week for another wrap-up.

May 2010 Election – List of Aurora Candidates

Here’s the list of all local candidates for the May 2010 elections. Thanks to Comelec for the info.

Update: * – indicates incumbent officials

Congressional and Provincial Positions

For Congressman, Lone District of Aurora
1. Angara, Juan Edgardo Manalang (LDP) *
2. Manalo, Teofilo Belen (Independent)

For Provincial Governor
1. Castillo, Bellaflor-Angara (LDP)*
2. Dela Cruz, Ruben Tud (PDP-Laban)
3. Tangson, Mariano Calderon (NP)

For Provincial Vice Governor
1. Noveras, Gerardo Angala (LP)*
2. Tolentino, Danilo Amansec (LDP) (incumbent Board Member)

For Provincial Board Member – First District (Dingalan, Maria Aurora, Baler, San Luis)
1. Abordo, Oliver Ian Angara (LDP) (incumbent San Luis Councilor)
2. Bautista, Philip Butch Molina (LDP)
3. Dinamling, Aizalea Adangla (PDP-Laban)
4. Gagarin, Jose Lumabao (Independent)
5. Ong, Pedro Jr. Montes (NP)*
6. Padua, Oscar Wenceslao (LDP)*
7. Pimentel, Cesar Bihasa (LDP)
8. Porqueriño, Marietta Galban (NP)

For Provincial Board Member – Second District (Dipaculao, Dinalungan, Casiguran, Dilasag)
1. Alipio, Ruben Jr. Soriano (LDP)
2. Cabauatan, Jose Sr. Blanche (LDP)*
3. Marzan, Honorio Jr. Macanas (NP)
4. Miran, Pablo Galolo (NP)
5.Pascua, Renato Villena (LDP)*
6. Tubera, Tito Castro (LP)
7. Valin, Denia Peña (LDP)*
8. Villar, Dante Cordial (NP)

List of municipal candidates after the jump.
Continue reading May 2010 Election – List of Aurora Candidates

Batangbaler 2009 Yearender

Here’s a summary of some notable Batangbaler posts of 2009. Batangbaler is not the definitive source of everything that happens in Baler or the rest of Aurora Province. These are just the things I managed to post in this blog.

January. The first Philippine surfing calendar was released and three Baler surfer dudes were given their own months – Edmund Medoza, Argie Huga and Wilson Faraon. Under Proclamation 1696, President GMA declared 2009 as the Year of Baler to commemorate the 400 years founding anniversary of Baler. Actually Baler is more than 400 years old and it was not founded 400 years ago, the Catholic Church is more correct in calling it the 400 Year Anniversary of the Evangelization of Baler. DENR freezes permit of lumber dealers in Aurora, thus making it sure that only the legal loggers could profit from our natural resources. Aurora villagers rally vs the planned Aurora Special Econic Zone in Casiguran). the Art Association of the Philippines’ New Art Collective exhibit at the Botong’s Up Restobar and Artspace in Makati features the works of the Gonzales brothers of Baler – Sherwin and Vincent. Aurora diving sites featured on Born to be Wild TV show of GMA 7. The trial on the murder of Dingalan, Aurora publisher Philip Agustin was suspended indefinitely. San Luis, Aurora starts the celebration of it’s 50th founding Anniversary. Baler LGU launced it’s official website www.baleraurora.net.

February. Problem with shortage of sabutan leaves was solved, when it was announced that the Sabutan was successfully cloned – in Aklan.  Dilasag Mayor Victorio Briones and his aides were nabbed in Manila for possession of high-powered firearms and handguns. They were later freed with a promise to return with the documents for the firearms. Sen Edgardo Angara said “The creation of the Aurora Special Economic Zone Authority here will open doors of opportunity for local residents and lift them from four centuries of grinding poverty.” Aurora Day 2009 Celebrations. Ms. Reinalyn Dela Cruz from San Luis crowned at Bb. Aurora 2009. Popular reggae band Brownman Revival performs at Baler Beach as part of the Aurora Day celebration. Aurora Day 2009 was graced by Cong. Gilbert Teodoro who was introduced by Sen. Edgardo Angara as the next president of the Philippines. The people were later entertained by the skimpy-dressed JC Parker. The first Art Gallery in Baler called High Heeled Dumagats was opened in front of the Baler Park. It was eventually closed a few months later. Jeho Bitancor was one of the performance artists featured in a show at Jajo Gallery in Newark, New Jersey.

March. Three years after he was abducted on March 3, 2006, environmental activist and radio broadcaster Joey Estriber is still missing. Karl Winston Cacanindin from Dipaculao, Aurora is the Top PMA Graduate for 2009. 11 Chinese and 2 Filipinos were slapped with criminal charges for alleged illegal mining on the coast of Casiguran. A Jewelry-making exhibit was held for 1 day at the Baler Municipal Plaza. Works of Baler artist Joel Vedad were exhibited at the Artasia Gallery at SM Megamall Artwalk. Rommel Espinosa was one of the Philippine delegates to the 16th Nippon Internationa Performance Art Festival (NIPAF 09) held in Japan.

April. Ate Donna‘s tribute to Baler hit the charts. Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3. Baler: A State of Mind, a painting and photo exhibit was opened at the NCCA Gallery at Intramuros as part of the Baler 400 celebration. The exhibit featured paintings of the Dimalangat Artists Community and photos of the Batang Aurora Camera Club. Also as part of the Baler 400 event, the Aurora Agri-Fisheries Trade Fair was held at the Department of Agriculture in Quezon City on  April 21 to 24, 2009. Aurora province to revive sabutan weaving industry. The Aurora Surfriders Association held the ASRAI Longboard Invitational on April 24 to 26. As part of the Earth Day celebration the Aurora Multi-Sectoral Action Group held the yearly Padyak Para sa Kalikasan on April 25.

Continued after the jump
Continue reading Batangbaler 2009 Yearender