In the beginning the name of Manado was Wenang (the name of a tree variety called Macaranga Hispida in Latin) which was located in the bay on the mainland of North Sulawesi. Across from the dwelling place Wenang, in the sea, and in front of it, lay an island by the name of Manarow, originating from the Tontemboan language, meaning "something laying on the other side", that is a stone or mountain island. We know this island today by the name of Manado Tua. Leaders of different villages of islands are called "Kolano", a term from the Moro society culture in Mindanao (South Philippines). Life of the inhabitants of Manarow was not peaceful because of many attacks from outside. Besides troops from the kingdom of Bolaang Mongondow, there were sea pirates from the Filippine islands. The Kolano were at a loss for how to defend themselves and so left and dispersed. Some staid on the Sangir and Talaud islands. To overcome the events the Kolano contacted the Tombulu tribe in Wenang, on the mainland of the Minahasa in order to obtain help to rescue the Manarow inhabitants. The result was that the council of the Tombulu community allowed the inhabitants of Manarow to stay in the area "Sindulang", at the estuary of the Tondano river that today is called the Manado river. Wenang started to develop since the coming of the Spanish and Portuguese wanderers around the middle of the 16th century. When the Spanish, who landed on Manarow in the beginning, started to develop a coffee cultivation programme to overhaul the tea culture on the Chinese mainland, Manado assumed the role of trade center. From then on Wenang received the attention from the "Mountain people" - expression of the inabitants for the original Minahasa people - especially after schools and a church were built by the Portuguese and Spanish Catholic missionaries which were followed up by Protestant churches by the Dutch and Germans. The name Manado started to become attached to the world map in the year 1541 by the Spanish cartographer Nicolas Desliens. In the beginning not as a city but as the island Manarow. Then, in the year 1590, Loco, a Spanish sailor, used the name Manado for a sea name. Later, because the center of trade was on the mainland, in Wenang, Wenang was identified with the name Manado, and the island Manarow became Manado Tua (Old Manado). Note: Manado is sometimes written as Menado.
Mapalus is an institution inherited from the forefathers of the land of Toar and Lumimu'ut (a terminology for the region of the Minahasa), which orientates its activity around the life filosophy of the Minahasa community: Si Tou Timou Tumou Tou. Mapalus as a social capital is a factor to speed up essential development through a system of working together in harmony with the basic assumption that each individual will make a significant contribution towards products of the whole group. Ergo: The community is always ready to help each other.
Mawalak means dividing land according to the number of descendant branches.
The name Minahasa is derived from Mina'esa, meaning "Unification of the Tribes". This unification of the tribes, dating from 670 at Watu Pinawetengan, was necessary to be able to withstand their mutual enemy the Bolaang Mongondow. Only in 1693 were they able to definitely defeat the Bolaang Mongondow.
Muntu-Untu is the highest form of leader. Approximately 1000 years BC the Minahasa had a Malesung culture. The Minahasas at that time already knew a form of government which was organized in the form of a Taranak of one line of descendants, for instance opok Soputan Makaliwe, Mandei, Pinontoan, Mamarimbing. In the 7th century the highest of their leaders had the title of Muntu-Untu, who lead the discussions at Watu Pinawetengan in the 7th century. In the Minahasa legends there are three Dotu Muntu-Untu names known: Muntu-Untu in the 7th century from Toungkimbut (Tontemboan). Muntu-Untu in the 12th century from Tonsea -according to Tonsea terminology, and Muntu-Untu in the 15th century in the time of the Spanish, so there have been 3 big discussions at the Watu Pinawetengan to pledge allegiance.