9 comments on “Once upon a time: Sarangany Island

  1. L.S.;
    Interesting history,but a bit mixed up.Datu Buisan was raja of Kendahe ca. 1640-1688.I don’t know principality of sarangani.Maybe onlysemi-independent datuship.Hisfather was Raja Egaliwutang of Kendahe(say reliable Dutch sources),who ruled ca.1600-1644.
    Son of datu Buisan was Raja Syam Syahalam who ruled as Raja f Kendahe ca.1688-1700,who was succeeded by raja Johannes Karambut I,who ruled 1711-ca. 1729.You said he is son of the Sultan of Tabukan.In Tabukan no sultan,but a a raja.
    I know f.i. Raja Don Francesco/Franciscus Maccampo/UdaI(1683-ca. 1700)and his son RajaMatheus Franciscus Macaampo/Mehenkelangki(1700-1718(or22).

    Thank you for your comment.I have many documntation of the dynasties of the Sangir and Talaudislands and I have manycontacts with royalty from there.

    Thank you.
    I am researcher history/present situation principalities of Indonesia.

    Yours sincerelly:
    D.P. Tick gRMK
    secretary Pusat Dokumentasi Kerajaan2 di Indonesia “Pusaka”

  2. TO: D.P. Tick gRMK

    My main source in this article was Ruurdje Laarhoven’s Triumph of Moro Diplomacy: The Maguindanao Sultanate in the 17th century (1989, Quezon City: New Day Publishers). She is a Dutch researcher who used primary sources from the archives of the Dutch East Indies Company. Some of Buisan’s documents are reprinted there.

    Kandahar is such a small place. Datu Buisan couldn’t give much credence to it. He claimed much bigger and more powerful territories – Buayan, Davao and Sarangany (all in Mindnao) – which were even more important than Candahar or the Sangirese Islands put together. But when he was driven out of Mindanao by Maguindanao Sultan Qudarat, he went to Candahar and married into royalty there.

    As I mentioned in the article, his son Kudjammu was the Rajah of Buayan. His other sons, Samsialam and Makabarat lived in Ternate and used the title “co-rulers” of Buayan. Buisan and his sons constantly harangued the Dutch to help them get back their territories in Mindanao and help Kudjammu in his fight against Qudarat.

    According to the document of Sept. 10, 1688, Samsialam used the title Raja Muda of Kandahar. According to Laarhoven, Buisan lived to be an old man. Perhaps when Samsialam was proclaimed Rajah of Candahar, Datu Buisan was still alive. That may have been the reason why Laarhoven wrote that Buisan was succeeded by his grandson Joannes Calambutta.

    Raja Egaliwutang must have been the father-in-law of Buisan. Buisan’s real father is also named Buisan, the powerful Datu Buisan of Davao who was the contemporary of Sultan Qudarat of Maguindanao. When the old Buisan died, Qudarat waged war on the young Buisan to get rid of competition. It is possible that the young Buisan’s mother was from Candahar.

    It is also common practice for royal descendants to hide the true lineage of their ascendants if they come from other lands. Buisan was not a native of Candahar. This is the case in Sulu who once had a Sultana for a ruler. The husband’s identity has been practically wiped out from all sources. All that is known is that he was an Iranun or Maranao. The Taususgs (people of Sulu) did not want any Iranuns/Maranaos to have any claim on the Sultanate. In the 1930s, Sulu had another Sultana whose husband was not a Tausug. When Datu Ombra was proclaimed Sultan, half of the Ruma Bichara declared another Sultan and Sultana.

    Buisan is quite common name for Moro datus. Even Sultan Qudarat’s father was also called Datu Buisan.

    You must not limit your research to the present-day territories of Indonesia. Laarhoven’s research showed how close the Maguindanao, Buayan and Sarangany royals were to Ternate and the Sangirese royals. There are many Sangils in Sarangany and Balut Islands.

    If Rajah Buisan of Candahar was not the son of Datu Buisan of Davao and father of Kudjammu, the Rajah of Buayan, then he would have no right whatsoever to Mindanao territories. And he would not have made all those letters to the Dutch claiming his “rightful inheritance.”

    Thank you for your comments.


    Datu Jamal Abbas

  3. Dear Sir;

    I am sorry to react only now.Better you send reactions right away to my e-mail at pusaka.tick@tiscali.nl , so that we can discuss matters directly.Yes,I know Mrs. R. Laarhoven,who is somewhere living on Hawaii,but she is hard to trace.
    I have the info about then raja2 Kendahe from Dutch sources.Maybe you know,that the Sangir and Talaud principalities were really made principalities,when the Dutch came.before it only ere chietainships.
    The Dutch sources were quite accurate and we can trust on that.When I see Philippines sources about the Sangir/Talaud principalities,it contains info,which is very different from the Dutch sources and also from the local dynastysources.I am sorry,but that is the case.F.i. I once received a booklett by a man,whose wife was descended of the last local raja of Dumalang principality and he also wrote about Kendahe,who was later united with Tahuna to the new principality of Kendahe-Tahuna under the rajas of Tahuna in 1903.He never mentioned that Raja Johannes Karmabut.I never say,that it is not true.But I just wonder.
    Yes,I also do some researches on the principalities of the S-Philippines.I know,that there is a need in Indonesia(the dynasties)to have also contact with the dynasties of the S-Philippines,Brunei,S-Thailand,S-Philippines,
    Singaopre,with whom they have a common history.
    I have much contact into the royalty network of Indonesia and I could accomplish a bit,that f.i. a delegation of the S-Philippines also attended a big royalty meeting in Indonesia at the end of november 2008.F.i. the dynasties of Kabuntalan,Buayan,Baloi i,Bcolod and Ramain were there.The dynasties of Sulu and maguindanao also were interested,but could not come.I saw the website of your brother as a Maranao sultan,but I can not trace his sultanate.I know all the 16 paramount principalities of the Maranao area.
    I also want to put info about the present sultans and prtender-sultans of the Maguindanao-,Maranao- and Sulu area(inclusive the so-called sultanate of the Yakan people of Basilan;on my site.The sultanates and principalities of the Philippines and Indonesia are much neglected.
    Yes,officially Raja Syam Syallam of Kendahe was not an Indonesian.But:…..then there was not question of the states of Indonesia and the Philippines,so he was just a raja from that area.
    Hereby I give you the pedigree,which I have from Dutch sources and from the book by S. Hayase from Kyoto,who published it in 1999.I found however many faults in his book and I told him that.Also from old times the local sources in SE Asia are not always very acurate according to f.i. dates and also sometimes the right place in the list of rulers of certain rulers.I think combining the local and European sources is always a good way to enrich BOTH sides of the info.That I always do,when I do fieldwork in Indonesia.f.i.
    Maybe you have for me pictures and names of Maranao present sultans.
    I am now trying to let(first 74)62 Indonesian kings/dynastychiefs and the like to Europe;f.i. to promote the Indonesian royal culture here.i feel sometimes like a man crying in the desert,but also sometimes;thanks to God;I have very good results.
    I am sorry,to have said,that Raja Johannes Karambut did not exist.I was however looking on my Tahuna dynasty pedigree.
    Hereby the basic pedigree of the raja2 principality of Kendahe.Probably you know,that in 1905 Kendahe was only a principality of a couple of thousand inhabitants.So only a remnant of the formert glory.In 1861 only ca. 1680 people were left in Kendahe and in 1930 ca. 5600 people lived there.
    There is the website the satasconnection.Now in sangir/talaus since short time they have 3 districts:one for the Sangir islands and the areas surrounding it.One for the Siau- and Tagulandang ilands and one for the Talaud islands.
    The Satasconnection have their won site.They said,they want to make a good book about the history of the principalities of the Sangir/Talaud islands.Before a local historian with the present Bupati already made a book about this subject.Maybe you can try to contact them.
    R. Laarhoven is a good historian,but mainly she is specialist in Maguindanao area only.Of course satal area has links with Maguindanao area,but such researchers not always has the correct info.I am member of a group of people and I am now 48 years old.Since more than 30 years I am digging for info about f.i. the history of the Satal principalities via the many Dutch sources weh have here,old books,contacts with all kind of missionaries,
    raja descendants in Holland and Indonesia,local church people,researchers,etc.
    Okay,hereby the promessed pedigree of the rajas of Kendahe:
    A certain Sultan Ahmad of Maguindanao(maybe you know,who he is?Thank you)had f.i. 2 sons.
    One;(1)Wagania became the first raja of Kendahe and ruled ca. 1570-1600.He had his residence at Balut islands in the S-Philippines.He married Tihuwang from Tahuna.

    2)Raja Egaliwutang(ca. 1600-1640).Brother.Married Bembulaeng of of Kendahe.

    3)Datu Buisang(ca. 1640-1688).Son.Became Christian in 1677.Married Liung Sangiang

    4)Raja Syah Syahalam(ca. 1688-1711;recognized as raja by Holland in 1693).Married Sangiang dalang and had a daughter called Nanding Sangiang

    5)Johannes Karambut I(1711-ca. 1729).Brother.Married Ampi and had a daughter,who married a certain Dungo and a son Mangakabumi.
    He had other brothers called Pancallang and Manabung,who was jogugu(sort of prime-minister),

    6)Raja Andries Manabung(Tasensulung).Son of brother(Manabung)of previous raja.(1729-19 may 1769).Married Sompung.

    7)Raja Manuel Manabung(Makaado).Son.(27-7-1771-1793.Died ca. 1795.Married Mikaela.
    He had child(ren-name unknown to me).

    8)Raja Johannes Karambut II(Ansaawuwo).Grandson.
    (1793-1827).Married Doloweli

    9)Raja Frederik Karambut(Umboliwutang).Son.(1827-1845).Married Tuari

    10a)Raja Daniel Petrus Ambat Janis(Bowongsiambat).Son.(1845-1893).Abdicated and died 1903.

    10b)Temporary rule of the jogugu.

    Then there was a rule of the rajas of Tahuna.From 1949-1955 the regent-raja of Kendahe-Tahuna was a nobleman called Afdeeling Karambut.
    The Sangir people had a strong feeling for,who is royal and who is not.Under influence of Protestant religion the feeling for the dynasties has been a bit demociased diminshed.
    Of course,because of the 2 different rival colonila powers the real contacts between the dynasties of your and my country(my father from Indonesia)diminished.

    Okay.I hope to receive any information from you/or reaction in due tume,for which I thank you very much.
    Now a friend of mine is having a trip to Malaysia(royalty)with the Raja and Ratu pf Kupamng and the secretary general of the Forum Silaturahmi Keraton se Nusantara:Pangeran Kusumodiningrat as representatives of the Indonesian royalty.

    Thank you for all.

    We are both dedicated historians,who want to bring good info to the world of the above mentioned neglected areas.maybe we can make each other knowledge more strong.

    I wish you a nice sunday.

    Yours sincerelly/hormat saya:
    D.P. Tick gRMK/Pusaka.

    P.S.:About myself:I am born as a civil Dutchman from mixed Javanase,Jewish,Dutch and German descent.My wife is the direct descendant of the last local recognized sultan of Banjarmasin.He is married with a descendant of a Panembahan of Bangkalan/madura.I am member of the royal court of the Usif(Raja)of Kupang/Timor.

  4. D.P. Tick gelar Raja Muda Kuno


    Thank you for your info. You just might have answered some of my questions regarding Datu Buisan.

    But first let me point out some things. As a member of Moro royalty myself – Maranao, Buayan and Tausug – I know that many published information are only partly true or simply wrong due to many factors.

    The names of the people usually change. Moros use honorifics and titles and these titles and honorifics change during one’s lifetime. When one becomes rajah or sultan, there is also a corresponding name change. The foreigners – Dutch, Portuguese, English and Spanish usually misspell the names. One would not even know that the Dutch and Spanish were referring to the same person because the name was spelled very differently.

    In old US army maps, Kandahar or Kendahe was usually shown as part of “Sangihe” island. In Dutch and Spanish maps, Candahar or Candigar is the name given to Saranggany and Balut Islands.

    It is obvious that Saranggany, Balut, the Sangirese and Talaud Islands were, at one time or another, ruled by same families.

    Also it is very important to know as much as possible the story behind the names of the royals or anyone for that matter. One cannot rely on mere lists.

    The name Buisan must have been an honorific. It means the One Who Gets Tributes. He is the lord whom people pay tribute to. From your list, we now both agree on Datu Buisan, rajah of Candahar, his son Shah Shya Alam and Johannes Colammbutta. Your list described Johannes as Buisan’s son. In Laarhoven’s book, he was Buisan’s grandson. In your list, Padjallang and a jugugu (prime minister) were brothers of Johannes while in Laarhoven’s book, Padjallang was a son of Buisan and was the jugugu of Tabukan.

    Obviously, there is discrepancy between your source and Laarhoven’s. But I am really more interested in Datu Busian, father and son.

    From your list, it seems like Raja Egaliwutang is the man I mentioned as Datu Buisan of Davao. The fact that he was married to a Kendahe royal answers the question why he retreated to Kendahe when Saranggany was invaded by the Maguindanao Sultan Qudarat in 1621.

    It is very probable that one of the titles of the elder Datu Buisan was Rajah of Candahar as well as Datu of Saranggany. As you mentioned, Wagania, the first Rajah of Candahar was residing in Balut Island. Balut is the sister island of Saranggany and was under the rulership of the Rajah of Saranggany. Balut and Saranngany were practically part of Davao (the elder Buisan made his name as a fierce young warrior together with his contemporary Sultan Salehin, Qudarat’s son, in the Davao and Butuan areas.)

    In my article, I wrote: “In 1575, the powerful Sultan Bajang Ullah of Ternate made a mutual defense pact with the Datu of Sarangani / Rajah of Candahar, whose capital was in Balut Island.” This Datu of Saranggani / Rajah of Candahar corresponds to Wagania in your list. It can be surmised that Saranggani, being the residence of the Rajah means that it is a more powerful place than Kendahe proper.

    From all the documents I had seen, it appears that the head of Saranggani used the title Datu to defer to the Rajah of Buayan, who was the titular “head” of the same royal family. Or they simply prefer Datu to the more pompous title of Rajah. The last two powerful Rajahs of Buayan who held court during the waning years of the Spanish and the beginning of the American era — Datu Utto and Datu Ali were popularly known by their title of Datu. Several Maguindanao sultans and Buayan rajahs were popularly known as datu. One does not stop being a datu by being a rajah or sultan.

    It must be noted that the Buisans, both father and son not only belonged to the Saranggany and Kendahe royalty, but more importantly, to the Buayan royalty. Buayan was larger and more powerful than Candahar, Sangir and Saranggany combined. And as you mentioned in your list, they are descended from a Maguindanao sultan.

    As Datu of Saranggani, one had the right to the Maguindanao and Buayan succession. But as Rajah of Candahar, one’s connections and royal prerogatives are on the Sangirese and not Moro royalty. At that time, the Moros of Mindanao and Sulu were clearly the powers of the region.

    All throughout his life, the younger Buisan, together with his sons – Kudjamu, the Rajah of Buayan; Samsialam (Syah Syahalam) and Makabarat — lobbied the Dutch to help them (the Buayan royalty) against Maguindanao and thus regain control over Mindanao and regain all their lost lands in Davao, Butuan and Saranggany. Syah Syahalam and Makabarat even lived in Ternate to be near the Dutch and called themselves “Co-Rulers of Buayan.” The younger Buisan’s brother and later nephew ruled the Butuan area.

    (You mentioned that Datu Buisan converted to Christianity. That is strange because all his sons and daughters were Muslims. One daughter was married to Sultan Barahaman of Maguindanao and another to Kachil Bakal , also of Maguindanao. Padjallang, the jugugu of Tabukan refused to convert to Christianity to the chagrin of the Rajah of Tabukan, a Christian. The Rajah of Tabukan was the husband of Lorolabo, another daughter of Buisan. Accdg. to Laarhoven, Colambutta was the son of Lorolabo. But years later, Colambutta reconverted to Islam and stayed in Maguindanao for some years. Also, once Buisan renounce Islam, he would have renounced his claim to all his Mindanao lands. He formally renounced all his claims on Mindanao and Saranggany in favor of the Dutch only in 1688. Laarhoven’s endnote described Buisan as “the devout Muslim king of Kandahar.”)

    Qudarat downplayed his war with the younger Buisan, the Rajah of Candahar as a fight among family members. There had always been intermarriages between Maguindanao and Buayan royal families, as I mentioned in my article. But if your list is correct that Rajah Egaliwitung (whom I think was Datu Buisan of Davao and Saranggany) was the son of a Sultan Ahmad of Maguindanao, then everything now makes sense.

    There is no known Sultan Ahmad of Maguindanao that corresponds to your timeline. But as I mentioned, the royals were known by many names and titles. The first six Sultans of Maguindanao were popularly known by other honorifics or titles like Datu or Sharif. It was only Qudarat who first became popular using the title Sultan. But that does not mean they never used the title Sultan (usually followed by an Arabic name). But this gives credence to the rights of the Saranggani datus (Candahar rajahs) to the succession of Maguindanao sultans and Buayan rajahs.

    By the way, I am not a professional historian. I am a mere student of history. And since my mother belonged to the Buayan royalty and her birthplace (Malita, Davao) was a stone throw away from Balut and Saranngany islands, I naturally was interested in the case of Datu Buisan. My mother’s family used to own land and cattle in Balut but my grandmother gave them away in the 1920s.

    As to the Maranao royalty, Maranao society is divided into 4 “states” or “pengampong” with 15 principal sultanates or royal houses, as acknowledged by the Philippine government. When the Americans came, the Marawi – Dansalan area (now Marawi City) prospered and saw the ascendancy of the Marawi datus. In early 1930s, my grand-uncle was proclaimed as the “First Sultan of Lanao”. My brother is the present and fourth Sultan of Lanao. We belong to several principal Maranao royal houses.

    There was never a Sultanate in Basilan. There were / are Yakan datus but Basilan was under the Sultanate of Sulu.

  5. I found ur site by accident. I know a lot of history of your country (philippines) since the rediscovery of Philippines by Magellan. How come you called urself a Moro? Is there a moro in the philippines since when Spain called the natives of the philippines ( that was in 15th century) were called Moro when it was rediscovered. Don’t you know that the Real Moors were Black NOT Malays? If you know the history of the real Moors (they were from Mauritania)how come you claimed ursef to be a Moor? Can you explain that? Is there any talented person can question your lies? That’s why you have only 4 who made a comments in your site? Are you a Filipino Mohamedan muslim that was paganized by pagan illiterate mohamed? Do you know who is the real mohamed the self-procliamed Arab bedouin pagan prophet of the arabs of the 7th century?

  6. The Land of the Moors Called ” Mauritania ” Not Mindanao and sulu. The whole Mindanao was NEVER occoupied by the Mohamedans. Therre are other tribes beside Mohamedans. They are Black people NOT Malay. There is NO Moors in the Southern Philippines.Stop lying to the Filipinos.

  7. HUBAL aka Romeo Ramos Salar (nrsalar@racc2000.com)

    From your comments, people can easily see that you are mentally imbalanced. For the information of the readers here, Mr. Salar is a Filipino living in Michigan and married to a Nancy Webster. He is obviously lowly educated, a thoroughly bigoted Muslim-hater and a person who deludes himself as an intellectual even though his English is horrible.

    He sends me hate emails full of anti-Muslim, anti-Moro slogans and propaganda. I forward these emails to his ISP in Michigan.

    There is really no need to answer his comments because they are idiotic. But to keep the record straight, there are 74 comments in this site (excluding his 3) and not 4 as he claims.

  8. Hi!

    It so nice to read this kind of post / article and find it more interesting and entertaining.

    You can also check my ID to find more about philippines destinations like Mindanao.

    or copy this link: mindanao(dot)yetbo4ever(dot)com


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