Name and location
According to Aguinaldo's defunct Angelfire web page, the town "is a daughter of the Municipality of Mayoyao. It was created by Batas Pambansa Blg. 86 sponsored by then Assemblyman Gualberto Lumauig and approved as law by then President Ferdinand Marcos on September 20, 1980." The new town was ratified through a plebiscite on December 6, 1980.
The original idea was for the new town to be named Bunhian, which was the name of a well-known barangay in the area. However, the authors of BP 86 chose the name Aguinaldo in honor of General Emilio Aguinaldo, who had passed through the place and built a stop-over camp at Bunhian in his retreat to Isabela during the Philippine-American War.
Aguinaldo lies on the eastern part of the province, bounded on the north by Mt. Province, on the south by the Magat Dam Reservoir, on the east by the municipality of Alfonso Lista, and on the west by Mayoyao and Lagawe municipalities.
The center (town hall) is located at 16°58'42.83"N and 121°19'35.37"E. It can be reached by road via the Banaue-Mayoyao-Alfonso Lista road.
Aguinaldo has a total land area of 53,806.0006 has. Halag is the largest barangay (12,453.4595 has) while Bunhian is the smallest (389.4404 has).
The town is mountainous. Mt. Angnge, overlooking the Cagayan Valley, is a tourist attraction. The thickly forested areas are rich in timbers and rattans. The cleared and thinly forested portions are planted to coffee and bananas.
The town is traversed by rivers and many tributary creeks. The Talite River has a potential for irrigation and hydroelectric power. The Ampangal waterfalls are a local tourist attraction. There are reports of metallic mineral deposits in the southeastern part particularly at barangay Itab.
The town's climate is montane. Dry season is from February to May, the rainy season is from June to January, and the coolest months are from November to January.
Aguinaldo has the following barangays:
- Maajlong (Majlong)
- Monggayang (Mongayang)
Majority of the local people speak the Ayangan language and trace their roots to the Ayangan tribes of southwestern Mayoyao and southeastern Banaue. About half of the population of eastern barangays, which are near the border with Isabela, speak Ilocano.
Based on the 2015 census, Aguinaldo has a total population of 19,408, compared to 19,830 in 1990. The general trend is for the local population to stagnate and shrink. It suffered a negative growth rate of -8.11 for the 1990-1995 period.
During the 1990-2010 period, the local population tended to concentrate in barangays Ubao, Monggayang and Posnaan. Most other barangays either stagnated at the same population levels or greatly shrunk. Some of the barangays worst hit by negative growth rates are barangays Halag, Itab and Taang.
Aguinaldo is agricultural, with palay as the main crop. Other crops include corn, peanut, banana and coffee. Most of the farmlands are irrigated rice terraces, while some farmlands in the eastern part are rainfed.
The rice terraces are exceptionally panoramic in the following sites: Henalong, Lupong, Bulinit, Jacmal, Ducligan, and Pajpaj.
Livestock raising is found in cogonal areas used as pasturelands. Livestock production is mostly small-scale and for home consumption, even as government veterinary services are available to household livestock owners.
Other local sources of livelihood: handicrafts based on rattan and timbers, and fisheries through fishponds done through the water impounding method (mostly for home consumption); commercial fishing through fish cages is done at the Magat Dam Reservoir.
The town's usual market for products and supplies is in Santiago City, Isabela. Business establishments in the town are mostly limited to sari-sari stores.
Aguinaldo is traversed by the Banaue-Mayoyao-Alfonso Lista-Isabela boundary road. Its northern barangays can also be reached via the Ubao-Taang national road, which connects to the BMALI boundary road at two junctions: at the western end (16°59'21.58"N, 121°18'27.61"E) and at the eastern end (16°57'20.79"N, 121°24'14.06"E).