Sampaloc Population & Death Rate (1860’s to 1880’s)
The “plan de almas”of Sampaloc from the 1860’s to 1880’s provide us a glimpse of the steady population growth of the town during the said three decades. The image below shows Sampaloc’s plan de almas signed by Fr. Ramon Caviedas (the Franciscan parish priest who built the Sampaloc cemetery located in Balic-balic, Sampaloc). Among other things, number of baptisms, marriages, and deaths are recorded.
During the dreaded 1882 cholera, Sampaloc’s death rate increased to 15% from the usual average of 4% to 8%. The death rate hoevered at 10% the year later and returned to the normal levels only by 1894.
While we do not have complete data for the decade of the1890’s, we see a dramatic change in the population growth of Sampalco. By 1891 (the year the funerary chapel of Sampaloc cemetery in Balic-balic was blessed), the population of Sampaloc surged to about 12,245 and by 1897, it reached 16,295. Thus, in a span of a little over three decades, Sampaloc’s population doubled. We can only assume that part of this doubling of population was a result of urban migration.