Friday, August 23, 2013


Alupat Island.  Saturday.  January 22, 1910

What is today called Alupang Island was originally Alupat Island.

And the waters around it look placid enough; no one would fear jet skiing in this area.

But we locals know that these waters can get very choppy in the early months of the year and as early as December, when the winds pick up and give that time of year the pleasant coolness but also more dangerous sea conditions.

A boat carrying six persons, including one woman, was traveling back to Hagåtña from the ranch of Mr. Herrero.  As they passed Alupat Island, the boat was swamped by the heavy seas.  The news article isn't clear if the passengers ended up in the water.  What is clear is that the boat was no longer able to sustain the lives of the passengers.

One Vicente Castro, a powerful swimmer and respected man, who had already saved others before from the perils of the sea, started to swim to the shore to call for help, but was instead swept out to the open sea.

The passengers were eventually saved, but Castro's body was never found.  The Governor had sent two boats to look for his remains, but the search was unsuccessful.

It is worthy of note that these ranch hands were returning to Hagåtña on a Saturday.  Many people lived in the ranches during the week, but returned to the capital in time for Sunday Mass.

(Guam News Letter)


  1. Just to clarify, the island was previously used for ranching?

  2. No, the boat ran into trouble around there. The boat was taking people back to Hagatna from Herrero's ranch. Not sure where that is but I wouldn't be surprised if it were in Tamuning or points north.