History Of Pola

Pola is a small and mountainous town which lies on the eastern portion of Province of Oriental Mindoro. It is about 73 kilometers from Calapan City, the provincial capital via the Pola - Soccoro National Road and the Strong Republic Nautical Highway (SRNH). It is bounded in the north by the Municipality of Naujan, in the south by the Municipality of Pinamalayan, in the east by Pola Bay and in the west by the Municipality of Socorro.

The town is now classified as a third class municipality and is composed of 23 barangays namely: Bayanan, Batuhan, Bacungan Buhay na Tubig, Biga, Bacawan, Casiligan, Calubasanhon, Calima, Campamento, Malibago, Misong, Matulatula, Maluanluan, Puting Cacao, Pula, Panikihan, Tagbakin, Tiguihan and Tagumpay. Two of these barangays are urban Zone I and Zone ii.

Its name was derived from the color of the soil in the locality which is reddish clay. In Tagalog, this is termed “pula”. This name remained until the Spaniards came and adopted it as the name of the town. The Poblacion sits at the estuary of the Casiligan River encircled by flourishing green mountain ranges and rocky hills to the west, Thus, the people are provided with a suitable haven for agriculture, fishing and nipa weaving.

The initial settlement was under the supervision of the Recollect missionaries during the 17th century whose main station was Naujan. During the 18th century, at the height of the Spanish-Moro wars, Pola Bay became a convenient stopover and launching area of the Moros for their sporadic attacks in the bigger settlements of Naujan and Calapan, Because of this the population in the settlement never grew since many of them were dispersed deeper into the hills to avoid capture by the Moros. 

In the years during the outbreak of the Philippine Revolution (1898), Pola was one of the towns in Mindoro where agitation against Spanish rule was more manifested. This was because of Esteban de Castro from Taal, Batangas who instigated the unrest.

When the Americans came in 1901, a local government was established that lasted until 1904. On April 28,1904, Pola was reverted back into a barrio by virtue of Act 1135 of the Philippine Commision. The town of Pola was consolidated with Bongabong Pinamalayan with the latter as seat of the municipality. This was in accordance with American administration desire to reduce the 15 municipalities of Mindoro to eight for economic reasons. The leaders of Pola continuously expressed their desire to be reverted back to a town. In 1911, by virtue of Executive Order 51, Pola was separated from Pinamalayan. The order took effect on January 1, 1912.

In 1962, the municipality of Socorro was carved out of Pola, reducing its area to the Present 16,259.20 hectares.

The principal tourist spots are Kabilang Ibayo Municipal Eco- Tourism Park, Bayanan Beach, Tuntong Islet, Calima’s Talon Falls, Enchanted Falls of Tagbakin and the white sand beaches o Tagumpay and Misong along the Pola coast. Interesting inland scenic areas are Sitio Bahid of Barangay Matulatula and Barangay Tagbakin. The latter two provide a commanding view of the surrounding area and are coolly enveloped by calamansi and citrus growths. 

The municipality holds its annual town fiesta with a Fluvial Parade and the Sabuyan Festival every June 24 in honor of their Patron Saint John the Baptist.