This is the third part of the list of 10 tribes in Davao.
The Kagans inhabit pocket settlements scattered around Davao Gulf. Like the Kulaman Manobos and Sangils, the Kagans did not and still do not occupy a contiguous territory that they can claim as their ancestral domain. Most of their settlements are found at the mouth of or along a river. Their more important centers were Padada, Sirawan, Davao (Bankerohan), Tagum (Bingcungan), Madaum, Iho, Matiao, Pantukan, and Sumlug (Lupon).
In 1885, Fr. More estimated their number at around 4,000. Despite this small population, the Kagans lorded over the entire Gulf by controlling the key river systems. Indeed Davao Gulf might be considered a Kagan lake. The Kagans were closely associated with the Magindanao sultanate, with many polities recognizing the Magindanao Sultan as their suzerain.But at the same time, the Kagans exercised a lot of independence.
The most important unifying factor of the Kagans was Islam. By the 1700s, most of them had been converted to this new faith, possibly through the Magindanaons. Samal oral tradition suggests Sharif Kabungsuwan, or perhaps his descendants, also proselytized in Davao. The genealogies of the various Kagan polities indicate some limkage with minor Magindanaw royalty.
Kagan power lay in better weapons and a network of local alliances. Their weapons were obtained from the Magindanaons as well as from Dutch or English traders. The leaders of the important centers were linked by kinship ties. They formed a formidable council that decided on certain matters, demonstrating a unity that allowed them control over the interior tribes from whom they exacted tributes.
The Kagans are in the District of Poblacion, Talomo, Buhangin, Bunawan and Paquibato.
In later Spanish documents, the Gulf Kagans would be identified by the Spaniards as the Davao Moros. Datu Bago of Davao River and Datu Pampang of Madaum were mentioned by the Spaniards in the early 1800s in connection with negotiations defining the boundaries of the Davao Moro realm and the Spaniards realm on the Pacific Coast.