The City began as a barangay called Sawangan (now Legazpi Port) whose inhabitants were mostly fishermen and farmers. From 1587 to 1616, the spiritual administration of the town was under the Franciscan friars of the DOCTRINA OF CAGSAWA (now Daraga). Officially, the name LEGAZPI was given to the ancient village of Sawangan by Royal Decree dated September 22, 1856, to perpetuate the memory of the Adelantado Don Miguel Lopez de Legazpi. Don Lorenzo Hao was the first elected Gobernadorcillo. Rev. Camilo Abainza was acting Parish Priest. First a city under the Becerra Law of 1892, it was dissolved into a municipality during the American occupation. A city for the second time by virtue of Republic Act No. 306 dated July 18, 1948 which included the Municipality of Daraga. On June 8, 1954, it was once more re-created as a municipality. Finally, on June 12, 1959, per Republic Act No. 2234, as amended by Republic Act 5525, Legazpi became a city for the third time. Presidential Decree No. 125, issued on 1973, declares the Municipality as part of Legazpi City.



Franciscan Friars began conversion of Sawangan to Christianity


Franciscan Friars transferred the settlement into a separate “pueblo” called “Albay”.  The first parish priest built a small chapel and established the “Mission de San Gregorio Magno de Sawangan.”

Feb. 1, 1814

Eruption of Mayon Volcano destroyed half of the village.   The people evacuated to Makalaya (now Taysan).


Sawangan, then known as the town of Albay, was segregated from Cagsawa and made the capital of Partido de Ibalon, the old name of  Albay Province.

Oct. 1, 1829

The “Gobierno Superior” issued a Decree prohibiting the founding of another town. The people formally settled in Taytay (now Bagumbayan), Albay District.


St. Raphael, the Archangel, church in Legazpi Port District, was built through the generosity of Pedro Romero.

Sep. 22, 1856

The name “Legazpi” was given  the ancient village of Sawangan by Royal Decree.

Oct. 23, 1856

Inaugurated Legazpi as independent town constituting the visitas of Lamba, Rawis, & Bigaa.

May 18, 1872

Legazpi was opened to world trade by Royal Cedula.


Legazpi first became a City under the Becerra Law, constituting a Municipalities of  Legazpi (now Legazpi Port), Albay Nuevo (now Albay District), & Daraga into “Ayutamiento de Albay”.


First set of officials took office.


American occupation dissolved the Ayutamiento.



Legazpi Port, together with Albay District and Daraga became one “Municipality of Albay”, the provincial capital.

July 12, 1912

Academia de Sta. Ines (now St. Agnes Academy), was founded by the Missionary Benedictine Sisters.


The town of Daraga was separated from the capital.

July 18, 1948

Legazpi became a City for the second time.  Daraga and Legazpi were re-combined to constitute its territory under R.A. No. 306.

June 8, 1954

The City was dissolved for the second time with the re-creation of Legazpi and Daraga into municipalities.

June 12, 1959

Legazpi became a City for a third time with the new charter under Republic Act No. 2234.

Feb. 5, 1973

Presidential Decree No. 125 issued then Pres. Ferdinand E. Ramos, declared Legazpi City anew to include Municipality of Daraga. Under the decree, Legazpi is to be divided into three districts: Daraga, Albay, and Legazpi Port districts.  PD 125 is held in abeyance with the full implementation of the Integrated Reorganization Plan, which also involves restructuring of local government units.

PD No. 1

Legazpi City is declared as Regional Administrative Center for the Bicol Region.

Aug. 10, 1988

Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Department Order No. 81, created the Task Force on Bicol Regional Industrial Center.

Jan. 23

“Battle of Legazpi”

Sept. 2-3

“Feast of St. Gregory the Great” (Albay District Fiesta)

October (2nd Week)

Ibalong Festival (the Continuing Event)

October 23-24

“Feast of St. Raphael the Archangel” (Legazpi Port District Fiesta)

June 1993

The Bicol Regional Development Summit has agreed to establish the Legazpi-Iriga-Naga-Daet Growth Corridor (LINDGC) and incorporating the same in the Regional Medium Physical Development Plan.


SP Res. No. 32-94, House Res. No. 54-94 and RDC Res. No. 13-93: Resolutions of the Sanggunian Panglunsod; Sangguniang Panlalawigan and Regional Development Council (RDC V) identifying 57 hectares in Barangay Homapon, Legazpi City as site for the Bicol Regional Agri-Industrial Center (BRAIC).


SP Res. No. 95-025, as amended by SP Res. 96-094 and PEZA Board Res. No. 96-366 establishing the Legazpi Special Economic Zone (SEZ) at Barangay Banquerohan, Legazpi City.

June 9, 1998

Presidential Proclamation 1249 declaring the identified 33 hectare lot at Barangay Banquerohan as Special Economic zone (SEZ).

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