Monday, June 4, 2012

AGAT IN 1827

ARROW : original Agat
X : present-day Agat

The original site of the village of Agat was north of the present-day village.  On the map, the long dark arrow point left shows the spot.  The map is of the 1944 American invasion of Guam.

After the invasion, Agat was so destroyed that the Americans decided to move everyone about a mile south to "New Agat."  It was really called "New Agat," where the present village is, where the big X is seen on the map.  I am old enough to remember some people still calling it "New Agat" in the late 60s and early 70s.  I think the fact that all of Orote Peninsula became a naval base also made it desirable (for the Navy) to move the village a bit farther away.

Manuel Sanz, a Spaniard, tells us what the original Agat (Hågat) looked like in 1827.

  • 230 people lived in Agat in 1827.
  • The village had its own church and casa real, or government building.
  • It had its own alcalde or mayor.
  • The fertile lands around Agat produced a lot of crops.  If these were grown on crown (government) land, the harvests were sent to the royal storehouses in Hagåtña.  The Governor would then dispose of these crops (a nice way of saying he made money selling them).  Those who worked on crown lands were paid by the government.
  • The area also produced a lot of different, valuable woods.
  • There were wild deer and pigs in the hinterlands and hills.

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