1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Albay
ALBAY, a city and the capital of the province of Albay, Luzon, Philippine Islands, near an inlet on the W. shore of the Gulf of Albay, 215 m. by wagon-road S.E. of Manila. Pop. (1903) 14,049; in October 1907 the towns of Daraga (pop. 1903, 18,695) and Legaspi (pop. 1903, 9206) were merged with Albay, making its total population, on the basis of the 1903 census, 41,950. Albay is one of the most important cities of the Philippine Islands. It is built on level ground near the S. base of Mount Mayon, a beautiful volcanic peak, 7916 ft. high, from which it is sheltered by the Linguin hills. The surrounding country is one of the most important hemp-producing districts in the Philippines; sinamay is woven here, and large quantities of hemp are shipped from here to Manila. Cocoa, copra, sugar and sweet potatoes are other important products of the district. The language is Bicol. The old town, called Cagsaua, which stood a short distance E.N.E. of the new, was completely destroyed by an eruption of the volcano in 1814 (about 1200 people being killed), and the new town was almost entirely destroyed by the insurgents in February 1900, an ancient stone church of much beauty (in what was formerly Daraga) being left standing on an elevated site commanding a view of the surrounding country. The town was rebuilt on a larger scale by Americans.