The early settlers of Dagupan City are believed to have come from Flores Islands in Indonesia because of their dialect which has a strong similarity to the Pangasinan dialect. Their main occupation is fishing and salt making, a major source of income among coastal residents of today.

Originally named Bacnotan by the Augustinian missionaries a few years after the establishment of the Spanish encomienda in Pangasinan in 1583, Dagupan was already known to be the biggest entreport (marketplace) not only in the province of Pangasinan but the whole of Region I.

In 1660, Andres Malong, a local chieftain, led a revolt against the Spaniards for imposing forced labor. After the revolt, the people rebuilt the town. To commemorate the gathering forces under Malong, the place was renamed to Nandaragupan, which means, Where people meet.

In 1780, the name of the town was simplified to Dagupan, followed by the end of Spanish rule on July 23, 1898, when the Spanish troops surrendered to the Katipunan leader, General Francisco Makabulos.

The 45th Infantry Batallion under Gen. Douglas MacArthur landed at the shores of Bonuan, then later totally liberated Dagupan from the Spanish rule. The first civil government was established on February 16, 1901 with the holding of the first elections through â viva voce.â

Early on, Dagupan was already the seat of education in the region.

Following the fall of Bataan, the Japanese Army invaded Dagupan. Japanese rule lasted until 1945.

On June 20, 1947, two years after the liberation, Dagupan became a city by virtue of Republic Act 170, a law known as the City Charter of Dagupan.

This charter governs the operations of the city as an independent political entity with its own distinct zeal.