The origin of the name “Jalajala” was derived from a
legend that was passed down through many generations. It was said that in the olden days, Jalajala
was still unknown and mostly uninhabited. During summertime, particularly the
months of April and May, the lake shore along Barrio Punta was covered with a
variety of shells. This was a cause of
wonder, because these type of shells are of the salt water variety, while the
lake is a fresh water body. One day, a Spanish couple riding on a boat with
Filipino boatmen anchored at the shore of Punta. There were many natives bathing then. Upon
arrival, the Spanish asked the natives, “Como se llama este sitio?" or
were asking for the name of their place in Spanish. The natives, unable to
understand the language, thought that the stranger was asking for the name of
the white shells along the shore, to which they answered “Halaan". Thus, the Spanish people began calling the place
“Halaan”. As years passed, the name
evolved to “Jalajala”.
Another version of the origins of the name of the town
was derived from a breed of boar also known as “berkjala.” These boars were
once very abundant in the town’s forests and was a favorite subject for
hunting. One day, as a Spaniard passed by, he heard the Tagalog natives
shouting “hala-hala,” which was a kind of hunting chant. Since then, the
Spaniards called the place “Jalajala”. The berkjala pig can be seen in the
insignia of the municipality.
According to historians, Jalajala was in the heart of
the ancient kingdom of Bai and Mai (Be’it or Ma’it) the Gatmaitan of the noble
Maitans of 1277 A.D. This peninsula was called “a little piece of
paradise.” It has a majestic landscape
which can be from the high portion of Mt. Sembrano as well as from Talim
Island. The lakeshore served as a
resting place for the traders from Laguna de Bay, thus, it became a source of
interesting items for scientific and educational values.
For centuries, Jalajala was a part of Villa de Pila
which in the year 1610 conceded to the Franciscan Orders the right to pasture
cattle in exchange of the support of their hospital at Los Baños. The vegetated area was suitable for raising
livestock. Hence, the natives were
encouraged to engage in the industry to increase the supply of milk and
September 7, 1676, the Superior Govierno - the governing body of the island,
issued an order separating Jalajala from Villa de Pila, both in civil and
ecclesiastical administration. Settlers
of the developing colony began to utilize the place by clearing the wilderness,
cultivating crops, and breeding various livestock. A bamboo church for San Francisco Bailon was
constructed under the leadership of Fr. Lucas Saro. The first mass celebration was held on
October 1, 1678. In the year 1733, a
stone church was constructed.
Jalajala had its first map drawn by Engineer Feliciano
Marquez on September 28, 1767 and was given the title “Islas de Jalajala”. The original map is now in the Archive
General de Indios in Seville, Spain.
Meanwhile, the inhabitants of Jalajala became
determined to be independent from its nearby colonies. In 1786, they finally succeeded in separating
from Pililla. This became possible due
to the influence of a rich and powerful Spaniard named Don Julio Dollar. As a
result, Jalajala became a “pueblo” or town.
However, in 1816, Jalajala was again relegated as one of the barrios of
the town of Pililla.
In 1820, French physician
Paul Proust dela Gironiere of Nantes France, driven by his strong desire to
venture overseas, reached the Bay of Manila though a vessel heading for the East
Indies. In Manila, after witnessing the insurrection of the native Filipinos in
Intramuros and the infamous massacre of foreigners by the Tagalogs in Binondo, he
decided to look for a new home in the Philippines far away from the prevailing
turmoils. Finding Jalajala and liking the place, he thus bought the peninsula
from the Spanish government for a token sum of money. He built there a stone
house where he lived with his wife, the widow of Marquez de las Salinas of
Dela Geroniere was commissioned to subdue the
pirates and bandits during that time. He cared for the victims of
Spanish extortion and ruled a prosperous and orderly
community. Assisted by industrious and loving neighbour named
“Aleli” - once a dreaded chieftain, together they converted the forest and
swamps into a thriving town surrounded by timberland; pasture land - rich folds
of rice, indigo, sugarcane, tobacco and coffee. A rare breed of hog,
a crossed-breed and named Jironiere was found in the place.
Geronierre appears to have been one of the pioneers
in the discipline of scientific agriculture in the country. The Real
Socieded Economica de Amigos del Pais de Filipinas on 27th of
June 1837 gave him a prize of one thousand pesos (P1,000), for being the first
to establish a coffee plantation of more than 60,000 shrubs on its second year
of harvest. With the money he built a church and school as well as
large warehouses and factory.
He experienced two significant events in this
town. First is the capture of the wild buffalo with six feet long
horns now placed in the Museum of Nantes. Second is the encounter
with a ferocious twenty-seven feet cayman along the wide river of Naglabas with
his friend George Robert Russel, an English merchant.
leadership has impressed foreign dignitaries on the vast improvements he has
done in the town. Among them were Rear Admiral M. Laplace, Burmigan, Joachim
Balthazar, Capt. Gabriel Lafond de Lucy, Bermont d’ Urville, Consul Adolphe
Barrot, Hamilton Lindsay, Dr. Enu, Don Jose Fuentes. This transition
was witnessed by his friend George Robert Russel.
Unfortunately, it was also here in Rizal where Gironiere
experienced the death of his offspring and his wife’s killing. These tragic events led him back to France
after he sold his properties. He left Jalajala with a considerable fortune.
Gironiere, in memory of his stay in the country, wrote
a book entitled “Twenty Years in the Philippines”, Vingt Annus Aux Philippines.
Cavada, a Spanish historian, stated that the
development of Jalajala as a pueblo or town started as early as 1823.
In February 23, 1853 Jalajala became part of the newly
created “Distrito delos Montes de San Mateo.” Later on, it became Distrito
Politico- Militar de Morong. After some
time, Jalajala went to the possession of Peter Verdi. But according to
missionaries, he abandoned the town in 1891, after it remained uncultivated for
27, 1898, Filipino revolutionists entered Jalajala to capture Spanish
August 1, 1898, the people of Jalajala joined the revolutionary government of Emilio
Act 946, after the war with the Spanish colonizers, Jalajala and Quisao were
consolidated with the seat of the municipal government of Pililla. By virtue of Act 1626, approved on March 27, 1907,
Jalajala became a chartered municipality and their first election was held on
the first Tuesday of November 1907. Simeon Perez was the first elected
Jalajala, as a government institution, was headed by
local chief executives using different titles over the years, such as Capitan
Municipal, Presidente Municipal, Alcalde Municipal and Municipal Mayor.
Jalajala was publicly auctioned in 1920 due to
non-payment of land taxes. The auction
was won by the brothers Francisco, Bernardo, and Marcelo de Borja of Pateros, who
thus became the first Filipino landowners of the town. In 1925, when the conflict between the tenants and
plantation owners occurred, many people transferred in a site known as
named the place "Barrio Malaya" to signify their freedom. But due to
an epidemic brought about by non-potable water, many settlers went back to
December 1941, Japanese fighter and bomber planes attacked the town of
Jalajala. By 1942, Japanese Imperial forces occupied the Municipality.
1942 to 1945, local Rizaleño resistance fighters under the so-called "Col.
Marking's Guerrillas" and the "Hunters ROTC Guerrillas" fought Japanese
Occupational forces, from the plains and mountains in Jalajala.
1945, with the support of the Filipino troops of the 4th, 41st, 42nd, 43rd,
45th, 46th and 47th Infantry Division of the Philippine Commonwealth Army and
4th Infantry Regiment of the Philippine Constabulary, Jalajala was liberated.
The subsequent events saw the end of World War II and the Japanese Occupation
of the country.
In 1979, the Municipality of Jalajala was assisted by
Japan Int’l Cooperation Agency (JICA) through the construction of major
infrastructure developments such as a 24-kilometer road, irrigation system,
bridges, schools, and a rice mill. These
led to the growth of Jalajala's local transportation, education, agriculture,
Before the implementation of the Comprehensive
Agrarian Reform Law (CARL), Jalajala blossomed with plantations for rice
production. The CARL emancipated the
farmers through its land distribution program, the beneficiaries of which were
the same tenants who used to be employed in the said plantations.
Jalajala is politically subdivided into eleven (11)
barangays namely: Sipsipin, First District, Second District, Third District,
Bayugo, Punta, Palaypalay, Pagkalinawan, Lubo, Bagumbong and Paalaman.
Jalaleños are known to have inherited the traits
of their Tagalog Indian forefathers, who are religious in nature. They
would regularly share their harvests, offer gifts and regularly attend mass
services with deep devotion to the Sto. Niño, from whom they seek divine
Presently, the Municipality of Jalajala is under leadership
and administration of MAYOR ELMER C. PILLAS.