During the early settlement days, the present Barangay of Palnab, now divided into Palnab del Norte and Palnab del Sur was a vacant graze land used by the well to do families living now in the Poblacion of Virac for their Herd of cows, carabao and goats. The place was then grassland with trees and that thorny vining plant called “Binnit”. Early settlers in the place where the families of Policarpio “Ampoy” that occupied a part of the present district of Salvacion; families of Cayetano David that occupied the district of Sta. Cruz; families of Sebastian Zafe that occupied the present district of San Pedro Alcantara. They were the original settlers of the Barrio of Palnab.
On the Eastern side of the Barrio, is a narrow body of water emptying at the mouth of Sto. Domingo River at the Southern end of the barrio called Sabang. This narrow strip water leads to its source at calosing and other small tributaries passing down below the Gogon Bridge, near the present market place of Virac.
Because there was no road yet connecting Virac and Calolbon at the time, the Sto. Domingo River which was till deep and navigable by bancas and other small crafts was used to carry in land product of Virac to Poblacion, thus for many years this Sto. Domingo River and this narrow strip of water on the eastern part of Palnab were through the fare or passage way to the Poblacion.
In this narrow strip of water, there were shallow portions so that at low tides, people of the poblacion had to wait for the high tide for some hours before their bancas loaded with products could pass through this narrow shallow strips right on time for the high tide. For those who did not knew would pass day time they wanted to, had really to wait even until in the evening for the high tide.
When they reached the anchor place near the Gogon Bridge, and the present market place which was before thickly vegetated with bamboos and trees along its banks they sometimes were asked what delayed them and where delayed. The usual answer was, we waited for the high tide at “Palanaban” which was understood to be that shallow portion of the narrow strip on the eastern part of Palnab. The term was used by most of those who were regular users of the passage way, which they refer to that place where they had to wait for the high tide.
As time went on people had to call the place “Palanaban” and expanded its reference not only to the place near the shallow portions but also to the surrounding places, now constituting the present barrio Palnab.
The term “PALANABAN” has undergone evolution through a long period of usage for the reason perhaps that the nature of people is to make easy anything that comes to their use and it is easier to pronounce PALNAB than Palanaban or Palanab.