Santa Maria is a 3rd class partially urban municipality in the province of Ilocos Sur, Philippines.
The Municipality of Santa Maria was called a “Purok” in early history. Others called it “Bukang” although “Purok” could be more likely the name given to the place since this means village in Iluko while “Bukang” does not refer to anything in this dialect.
There are conflicting dates regarding the establishment of this town as an independent parish. Sources available at the Rare Books and Manuscript Section. Filipiniana Division of the National Library and national Archives shows that the first Agustinian mission was established in Santa Maria in 1760 which was at that time a “Visita” of Parish since 1587. Others reveal 1765 and 1769 as the town’s foundation dates although it celebrated the 200th year of its christianization in 1767 on the strength of a “Libro de Bautismos” for 1766 still preserved in its parish archives. Santa Maria however, was officially recognized as a ministry in 1765, but later it became once more a visita of Narvacan for lack of priest. It finally became an independent parish in 1769 under the patronage of the Blessed Virgin Mary of the Assumption in whose honor the name of the town was changed from Purok to Santa Maria.