History and Government
Licuan during the early times was called "Basakal". The word Licuan came from the name Licuanan, a woman of extraordinary size and strength who once ruled the place. Licuanan, with her extraordinary characteristics, became a legend and a heroine. She was said to be bigger than anybody else in her time and had the strength of five men combined. Because the community was frequently bothered by headhunters from neighboring tribes living in the eastern mountains, Licuanan was the perfect choice to rule the place.
The word Baay on the other hand came from the phrase "awan ti paay", which means useless in Ilocano. The phrase came about when a long time ago, a goddess of beauty named Ayo visited the place now known as Baay. Ayo in her visit left a gift to the people, a musical instrument made of bamboo called "balimbing" by the inhabitants. Because of their joy in receiving the gift, the people held a feast. During their celebration, the people sang and danced, eager to hear the sound of the balimbing. The people expected that the instrument would produce a sweet sound, as sweet as its source. When the balimbing was played, the people were disgusted because it produced a harsh and unmelodious tone far from what they expected. Hearing the balimbing's sound, one of the disgusted guests commented "awan ti paay".
From its creation in 1960, Baay-Licuan's mayors are the following: Manuel Purugganan (1960-1964), Daguio Valera (1964-1968), Lunes Colet (1968-1972), Johnny Guinaban (1972-1976), Daguio Valera (1976-1985), Paterno Bersamin (1985-1986) and Nestor Castillo (1986-1998). At present, the mayor is a lady in the person of Aunnielyne Castillo.
Baay-Licuan has 11 barangays as follows: Licuan, Bonglo, Bulbulala, Caoayan, Domenglay, Tumalip, Lenneng, Mapisla, Mogao, Nalbuan and Subagan.
Baay-Licuan is 52.10 kms. away from the capital town of Bangued. It has a total land area of 26,609 has. distributed as follows: pasture land - 5,620.45 has., open grassland - 5,608 has., agricultural land - 1,087.89 has., brush land - 6,745 has., forest land - 2889.50 has. and alienable and disposable land - 4,301 has.
In 1990, Baay-Licuan had a population of 3,697, a total number of households of 637 with an average household size of 5.7 and a population growth rate of 1.8%. In the 1995 Census of Population, population and the total number of households increased. In comparison to 1990 data, 1995 population increased to 3,866 while the total number of households increased to 691. The average household size is at 5.42 while the population growth decreased to 0.84%.
Baay-Licuan is agricultural with palay as its main crop. With a total agricultural land area of 1,957.47, 1,087.89 has. is classified as farmland, 354.58 arable land and 515 has. pasture land. Livestock production is also one of the industries though limited only to backyard raising and for home consumption. Among the livestocks being raised include carabao, cattle, goat, swine, horse, chicken, duck and dogs. Other than agriculture, the sources of livelihood are fishing and engaging in cottage industries. Fishponds in the municipality have a total land area of 1.57 has. Cottage industries are usually children's wear. Other cottage industries also exist using raw materials such as bamboo, buho, wood, rattan, tiger grass, gold and silver.