The Municipality of Alimodian

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One of the versions of how Alimodian got its name and perhaps the most popular one tells of how a group of Spanish soldiers called upon a native gathering coconuts from atop the palms, about the name of the place. Ignorant of the Spanish language and impatient that he may hit the soldiers with the heavy fruits, the native shouted back, “Halin kamo diyan”. The Spaniards, in turn, ignorant of the native dialect, took it as the coconut gatherer’s answer and they called the place Halin kamo diyan. The present name evolved from the phrase.

It was in 1753 that Spanish influence and control started to be felt in Alimodian, then a small community and a visita under the jurisdiction of a mother town Ogtong (now the Municipality of Oton). It was in 1754 that Agustin Magtanong initiated moves to separate Alimodian from Ogtong leading to his appointment as the first gobemadorcillo on January 8, 1757, and earning him the distinction of being the founder of Alimodian.

In January 1904, the provincial government legislated the fusion of Alimodian and San Miguel with the Municipality of Leon. However, Executive Order No. 45, signed by Gov.Gen.Francis Burton Harrison and confirmed by the Provincial Board, ordered the separation of Alimodian from Leon effective January 1, 1919. Gregorio Alvior was elected as the first President of Alimodian and it was during his administration that education, economic, and beautification-related projects were carried out making Alimodian famous for bananas and professionals, mostly teachers, some of them were assigned to Mindanao to teach. Civil resistance against the Americans was led by Uto Valentin, a native of Alimodian and better known as the Tiger of Panay.

It was in Alimodian, a day after the surrender of Corregidor, that the first ambush against the Japanese forces was staged in Barangay Balabago on May 7, 1942. Alimodian’s share of war included, among others, victims of the Taban Massacre and heroes, among them Major Jose V. AIvior, a one-time Mayor of Alimodian and one of the planners in the organization of the Panay Free Forces, Lt. Marcelo del Rosario, Lt. Comelio Salarda and Lt. Esperidon Amuan. During the Japanese occupation, Anacleto Amparo assumed office as Mayor because the duly elected Mayor Felix Altura joined the Resistance Movement with Gov. Tomas Defensor.

After the war, on May 15, 1946, the military government appointed Simeon A. Cañonero as Mayor to bring back a semblance of normalcy in the aftermath of the war. With a focus on food production, it was during this time that Alimodian was regarded as the egg basket of Iloilo.

Source: The League of Municipalities (Iloilo Chapter) | “A Testimonial Program” | Pototan, Iloilo | January 8, 1998

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Sheila is a legal editor and a digital marketing enthusiast. She is a kdrama fan, a dog person and a certified foodie!

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