San Isidro is one of forty (40) municipalities (along with three cities) that comprise the province of Leyte in the Eastern Visayas. The town is politically subdivided into (19) barangays, and is a part of the 2nd Congressional District of Leyte.
San Isidro is politically subdivided into 19 barangays.
HISTORY OF SAN ISIDRO
On the western part of the Leyte mainland, facing the northern tip of Cebu and the Visayan Sea is the agricultural town of San Isidro. It has a total land area of 11,125 hectares and is bounded by Calubi-an in the north, Leyte in the east, Tabango in the south and on the west by the West Visayan barangays. The main occupation of the municipality is farming and its principal products are rice, corn, root crops, hogs, cattle, chicken, copra, tobacco and peanuts.
In the beginning, San Isidro was a visita (sitio) of the municipality of Leyte. It is believed that the first settlers came from Bohol, Cebu and Panay. It was originally called “Pongong” after a nearby river, presently called Butak Barrio, north of the present town of San Isidro. The land of Ponong was very fertile and could grow any kind of plant. Its sea was rich in marine life.
By virtue of an “Orden Real” dated September 30, 1884, the Ponong settlement was officially recognized. In 1905, a rich Tagalog agriculturist by the name of Don Pascual Antonio together with Oscar Perez de Tagle and the Galza family, renamed the town San Isidro Labrador, the patron saint of farmers. In the beginning, this town was a barrio of Villaba. It was on December 31, 1909 when the town was completely separated from Villaba.
When moro piracy was still rampant, the town was ravaged thrice by the marauders. The settlement was always defended by Mariano Maisug, Martin Lagat Montajes, Torino Alogi and Mariano Abut, noted brave warriors. In 1909, the town was burned by “pulahanes” from Ormoc.
The first public school was established in 1890, with Numeriano Macariola, a famous professor from Tacloban as head.
Among the prominent men in the town’s history are: Pascual Antonio, Oscar Perez de Tagle, Esteban Bismonte, Mariano Antonio and Marciano Penaranda.
The literacy rate in the town is high at 80%. The religious organizations existing are the Roman Catholic Church with Fr. Romeo Mazo, parish priest, United Church of Christ, Iglesia ni Kristo and the Jehovah’s Witnesses.
San Isidro can boast of its cottage industries which are giving the people additionally income. These include mat-weaving, nipa-thatch-making, hollow-block making, basketry and fishnet making.