Brief HistoryMany names (Samal, Ibabao, Tandaya) were given to Samar Island prior to the coming of the Spaniards in 1596. The name Samar was derived from the local dialect "samad", meaning wound or cut, which aptly describes the rough physical features of the island that is rugged and deeply dissected by streams.During the early days of Spanish occupation, Samar was under the jurisdiction of Cebu. In 1735, Samar and Leyte were united into one province with Carigara, Leyte as the capital town and again Samar became a separate province in 1768.Samar (Western Samar)Western Samar, formerly Samar, is a province of the Philippines located in the Eastern Visayas Region. It is 802 kilometers from Manila and occupies the westernmost section of the Samar Island. It is bounded on the north by the province of Northern Samar, on the east by Eastern Samar, on the west by Samar Sea and on the south by Leyte Gulf.Prior to the coming of the Spaniards in 1596, many names were given to Samar Island such as Samal, Ibabao and Tandaya. The name Samar was derived from the local dialect "samad" which means wound or cut. This term appropriately describes the rough physical features of the island that is rugged and directly cut apart by streams. The province was once part of the Samar province which comprised the whole island of Samar. It became a separate province through the approval of Republic Act 4221 on June 19, 1965. Under this act, Samar Island was divided into three provinces: Northern Samar, Eastern Samar and Western Samar. Presently, the province is composed of 2 congressional districts, 24 municipalities and 2 cities. Catbalogan City is the provincial capital. Relative to its location, Western Samar serves as a reference point for tropical cyclone occurrences as it is within the typhoon belt of the country. But this does not mean that it is frequently hit by tropical cyclone. Rainfall is evenly distributed throughout the year and the province has no distinct dry and wet season. The major industries in Western Samar are agriculture, cattle raising, fishery, forestry, mining and tourism. Hematite and magnetite chromate, nickel and manganese are the major ores which can be found in the province. It is the main supplier of fishes in the country due to its relatively long coastline in the western side extending over 300 kilometers. Western Samar has two existing airports namely, the Calbayog Airport and the Catbalogan Airport. Calbayog Airport, considered as a secondary airport, can accommodate aircraft for general aviation. Flights from and to Manila are available in this airport. On the other hand, there are no commercial flights available at the Catbalogan Airport. Western Samar has its share of nature's beautiful spots. Among its jewels which attracts tourists and local folks include unexplored mountains and caves with exotic wildlife, unspoiled shores with coral reefs, beautiful beaches and waterfalls.