By: Erlow Talatala (BukNews.Net)

The original inhabitants of Malaybalay were said to have come from the seashores of Northern Mindanao but were driven inward by marauding pirates and the colonizing Spaniards. Before the final conquest of the hinterlands of Mindanao, Malaybalay together with Kalasungay Sumilao, Linabo, Mailag and Silae, had been known settlements in Bukidnon.

In 1850, the entire village of Kalasungay was burned down during the battle against the Spaniards. All male adults were killed on sight, and all women and children were taken hostage. It was the last recorded resistance by the inhabitants against the conquering Castillan Army. Those who survived battle then fled to Silae.

Twenty seven years later, the villagers slowly came back and settled near the Sacub River under the protection of Datu Mampaalong (Bulawan sa hiruga-an yo).  Sacub is a sacred place (talangdan) of the inhabitants, and the Salobsob, an underground water bed source, was a favored place of livelihood and social activities. The spring bore witness to the founding of what we now know as Malaybalay.

In the desire of the people for peace and unity, Datu Mampaalong and thirty (30) other datus gathered together and came up with a peace pact. This event took place in June 15, 1877 where over 400 inhabitants of Malaybalay and their leaders then accepted Spanish dominion and Christianity. This signaled the establishment of a pueblo (Ereccion del Pueblo) called the Oroquita del Interior. The entire territory covers what is now known as the entire province of Bukidnon.

NOTE from the EDITOR: This piece by Mr. Erlow Talatala was originally published at BukNews.Net, and while his commentary was culled out, the information hereon only went through technical review and editing.