The spearhead was
found by Elson T. Elizaga of the Heritage Conservation Advocates (HCA) on the
surface of Huluga in June 2003. It was brought
to the National Museum by a student of the UP-Archaeological Studies
Program (UP-ASP) with the expressed agreement that it would be returned
At the National Museum, archaeologist Dr. Eusebio Dizon identified
the item as a whale harpoon head, adding that it was also found in Cebu,
Bohol, Siquijor and Gigantes Island of Panay. Dizon's statement gave national cultural signifance to the Huluga
But Richard Ellis, Associate Researcher of
the American Museum of Natural History, went further. After receiving
a photo of the item from Elizaga, Ellis wrote
in an email that a similar implement is used in Lomblen Island of Indonesia,
a place 2,000 kilometers away from Huluga. Lomblen is part of the Brunei-Indonesia-Malaysia-Philippines
East Asean Growth Area (BIMP-EAGA).
because of the importance of this artifact, it was persistently kept
by a UP-ASP archaeologist (not Dizon) for almost a year, and was given
back only after Elizaga sent a demand letter.
The item is now on display in the Museum of Three Cultures of Capitol University.
Photo of Lomblen Island harpooner courtesy of Richard Ellis. See map of
Published by the Heritage Conservation
Advocates, Cagayan de Oro, Philippines.