Mexico, officially the Municipality of Mexico, is a 1st class municipality in the province of Pampanga, Philippines. According to the 2015 census, it has a population of 154,624 people. It was also formerly known as Nuevo México during the Spanish period.

According to folk etymology, the original pre-Hispanic name of the village was purportedly Masicu or Maca-sicu, which the Spaniards spelled as “México”. It is claimed that this was a reference to an abundance of chico trees. However chico trees are not endemic to the Philippines and were introduced by the Spaniards. Another claim is that it is derived from siku (“elbow”) and was a reference to the elbow-shaped bends of the nearby Abacan and Pampanga Rivers. But there are no records of the town ever being called Masicu. Instead, the origin of the latter name is believed to be simply a common mispronunciation by the locals.

According to the Augustinian records in Libros de Gobierno Eclesiástico, the town was founded as a river trading port at around 1581 and was originally named Novo México (the Old Spanish form of Nuevo México, “New Mexico”) after Mexico City.

The Spanish colonists made México the capital of the newly formed Province of Pampanga. Gaspar de San Agustin wrote that being the capital, México was one of the most “beautiful and charming” centers in the province. A lavish church made of stone and tiles, the Parish of Santa Monica, was built in 1581 with Masangsang and Matúlid serving as its visitas.[citation needed] Mexico also formerly included the city of San Fernando, including parts of Angeles City (formerly the barrio San Angelo).

In 1660, Don Francisco Maniago, a native leader from México, led the Pampanga Revolt against the Spanish. It was caused by the imposition of forced labor (polo) and rice tributes (bandala) by the Spanish colonial government. Maniago also inspired similar revolts in neighboring cities. These were suppressed in 1661 by Governor-General Sabiniano Manrique de Lara.

The Spanish colonial authorities stripped México of its political importance after the Pampanga Revolt by moving the provincial capital further downstream to Bacolor. But it retained its strategic economic importance especially among the Lúsung Chinese and their mestizo descendants. México was still a regular drop off point of forest products from the upper reaches of the Ábacan River. It was also a favored destination by merchants from as far north as Pangasinan. By the 18th century, the Chinese traders and their mestizo de sangley descendants living in México, Guagua and Malabon had formed and maintained business and social alliances with each other. Cascos and sampans maintained the flow of goods along the Malabon-Guagua-México chain. Like the Chinese section of Manila, the commercial center of México became known as the Parián.[citation needed]

In 1898, General Maximino Hizon, rallied Kapampángans to fight the Spaniards under Emilio Aguinaldo’s revolutionary banner and ordered the execution of the Parish priests of México and San Fernando. When the Americans replaced the Spaniards as the new colonists, General Maximino Hizon soon rose up to become supreme commander of all the Philippine Forces in Pampanga. He was captured by the Americans in 1901 and exiled to Guam after refusing to pledge his allegiance to the United States. He died in exile on September 1, 1901.


Mexico is administratively subdivided into 43 barangays.
  • Acli
  • Anao
  • Balas
  • Buenavista
  • Camuning
  • Cawayan
  • Concepcion
  • Culubasa
  • Divisoria
  • Dolores (Piring)
  • Eden
  • Gandus
  • Lagundi
  • Laput
  • Laug
  • Masamat
  • Masangsang
  • Nueva Victoria
  • Pandacaqui
  • Pangatlan
  • Panipuan
  • Parian
  • Sabanilla
  • San Antonio
  • San Carlos
  • San Jose Malino
  • San Jose Matulid
  • San Juan
  • San Lorenzo
  • San Miguel
  • San Nicolas
  • San Pablo
  • San Patricio
  • San Rafael
  • San Roque
  • San Vicente
  • Santa Cruz
  • Santa Maria
  • Santo Domingo
  • Santo Rosario
  • Sapang Maisac
  • Suclaban
  • Tangle