Long before the said settlers from Manamoc, Cuyo and Agutaya arrived in the place called Malagnang (Poblacion), the barangays of Caruray, Port Barton (Itaytay), Kemdeng, Alimanguan and Binga had already been established as barrios and inhabited by the indigenous people, the Tagbanua tribe.
During the arrival of these ethnic groups, San Vicente was still a part of Puerto Princesa and Taytay, which is located north of San Vicente. The three southern barangays of San Vicente which are Caruray, Port Barton (Itaytay) and Kemdeng were formerly part of the Municipality of Puerto Princesa, while the two barangays in the north, Alimanguan and Binga were formerly barangays of Taytay, Palawan.
Fishermen and loggers from Luzon and Visayas frequented these barangays for fishing and logging and some of them permanently settled in these barangays, most notable of these were the Flores and Garcia in barangay Caruray where they operated a carabao logging during the 40’s and early 60’s aside from logging operations, the Flores and Garcia’s were widely known for and recognized as the Godfather of the Tagbanuas in barrio Caruray, thus, a lot of Tagbanuas’ surnames were given by these two persons.
In 1952, the people of Manamoc, Cuyo and Agutaya, Palawan arrived in a place called Malagnang which means “muddy”, a sitio of Kemdeng, formerly part of Puerto Princesa City. The first to arrive were Dandal brothers (Anastacio, Ricardo and Lauro), Alberto Radam, Domingo Maceda and Marcelino Gadiano, together with their respective families. Later on, relatives of the first settlers followed, forming a small community which gave rise to the election of Anastacio Dandal as the first barrio lieutenant. All the original settlers had held the same position as pre-arranged by themselves upon their arrival.
Accordingly, the Agutaynens and Cuyunons increased in number, and with the increase disputes emerged. A conflict on the choice of patron saint arises, the Cuyunons having their patron saint, Saint Vincent Ferrer, and the Agutaynens, Saint Isidro Labrador. The group decided to resolve the issue by having a raffle for the selection of their patron saint, the highest number of entries will be chosen and therefore will be adopted. It was Saint Vincent that got the highest number of entries and the name Malagnang was changed and San Vicente was adopted as the new name of the place.
In 1969, when Mr. Lauro Dandal became the Barrio Captain, he sought the assistance of the administration of the late Mayor Donato Manga of Puerto Princesa regarding the separation of San Vicente into a municipality. Accordingly, the administration of Mayor Napoleon Ordoñez of Taytay gave its corresponding support to this move. The municipal council of Puerto Princesa then passed a legislation for its separation together with its corresponding territories to be covered. The municipal council of Taytay also passed a legislation and waived some of its territories for San Vicente. Then, it was brought to the care of Congressman Ramon V. Mitra, Jr., then Congressman of Palawan. Mitra presented a bill to congress for the creation of San Vicente into a municipality. Mr. Lauro Dandal lobbied and exerted much effort, his own money and time until the bill was approved by the Senate and the law creating San Vicente into a municipality.
As more settlers arrived, San Vicente was declared a separate municipality in 1969. The town was named after Saint Vincent Ferrer, the town’s patron saint. It was created on June 21, 1969 by virtue of Republic Act 5821 and became one of the municipalities of Palawan. But it took three years before San Vicente could function as a municipality carved out of two neighboring towns. In 1972, the municipality of San Vicente held its first election.
The first mayor elected was Digno Pablico and the first municipal council members were Felix C. Radam (Vice-Mayor), Eleuterio Alfas, Sr., Pablo P. Labrador, Celestino M. Archedera, Epifanio Z. Zabanal, Francisco T. Palao, Jaime H. Janoras, Tito E. Zabalo, Sr., and Victor Isidera. Mayor Pablico served from 1972 to April 21, 1979. On April 22, 1979, he was replaced by Mayor Daniel F. Yayen who was appointed by the President to serve the unexpired term. In January 1980, Mayor Yayen was elected to the post and became the second mayor, appointed and elected.
Worthwhile, there was an abrupt transition after the snap presidential election in February 1986. This catapulted Mrs. Corazon C. Aquino to presidency. Afterwards, a change of leadership from the national to the local level followed. Thus, Mayor Yayen was replaced by OIC Antonio C. Alvarez from April 22, 1986 to November 30, 1987. Local election was to be conducted on January 28, 1988, Mr. Miguel M. Bermejo, Jr., the Municipal Planning and Development Coordinator of the municipality was appointed by the Department of Local Government as OIC Mayor from December 2, 1987 to February 2, 1988 to serve during the preceding local elections. Hon. Antonio C. Alvarez was elected without any opposition from other parties in the local election in 1988 and became the third mayor appointed and elected. In May 11, 1992 synchronized National and Local elections, Mayor Alvarez won again convincingly as Mayor of San Vicente and was re-elected in 1995.
Mayor Alejandro A. Villapando is the fourth elected mayor of the municipality in the May 1998 elections. However, he served for barely one (1) year and eleven (11) months because he was removed from office due to an administrative case filed by the Sangguniang Bayan. By virtue of the decision of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan on February 2, 2000, Hon. Alejandro A. Villapando was found guilty of Abuse of Authority and Culpable Violation of the Constitution thereby ordering his dismissal from the service as Municipal Mayor of San Vicente. It was confirmed by the Office of the President on May 29, 2000, thus, on June 16, 2000, Ramir R. Pablico, elected Vice Mayor, took oath and assumed the vacated position. He served from June 16, 2000 to June 30, 2001. Mayor Antonio V. Gonzales was elected and became the fifth mayor of the municipality. He was reelected to the same post during the May 11, 2004 and in May 2007 elections thereafter. All in all, he served three (3) terms in the mayoralty office. In May 2010, another national and local elections was conducted wherein the sixth mayor, Hon. Maria Carmela E. Alvarez was elected. Hon. Alvarez was the youngest at 22 to be elected to the post in 2010, and re-elected as mayor in 2013 and 2016 serving almost 9 years before she took a leave of absence from September 2018 until the few months left of her term. Hon. Antonio V. Gonzales, elected Municipal Vice Mayor served as the Acting Municipal Mayor during those months until the next election conducted on May 13, 2019 wherein Hon. Amy Roa Alvarez was elected as the 7th Municipal Mayor of San Vicente.