3. Merchandise Trading

Trade appears to be earliest economic base of the municipality. At the turn of the 13th century, inhabitants from neighboring places such as Cervantes to the northwest traded salt, bandala (lowland blankets), jars, and cows for highland wooden pipes, chickens and pigs. The natives in turn brought their bartered goods to the hinterlands of Ahin, Tinok, Hapaw, and Hungduan (now comprising the northwestern territories of Ifugao Province).

Trade resulted in the improvement of living conditions as well as changes in life styles especially in terms of clothing. Relative prosperity brought with its population growth, a trend that steadily continued until the 16th century when an epidemic of chickenpox (bulutong) decimated the population and people moved out of the area to such places as Mankayan, Bakun, Kibungan, Itogon, Ifugao, and other adjoining places.